Biblical References To Cannabis

Discussion in 'Religion' started by Mamabudz, Dec 1, 2001.

  1. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    Biblical references to Canabbis

    had some fun last night working out the word history of our favorite herb: cannabis.

    Many folks know that cannabis is referenced in the bible and that is some world religions its use is sacred. I was reading in the Tanakh (the 5 books Genisis Exodus Deut. Leviticus & Numbers) in the original Hebrew and actually tripped over the word.

    First time I read it in it's original That was fun.

    kaneh-bos'm -- reed or cane like aromatic plants (mistranslated in the Greek Septuagent to calamus which is a marsh plant of little value -- calamus was carried over in mistranslation into the King James version of the Bible)

    kaneh is the root word from which we get the English word cane (sugar cane etc.)

    bos'm is the plural of the word spice or aromatic. in Hebrew the plural is supplied by the sound of "m" so the singular is bos (or bis).

    kaneh-bos or kaneh-bis is singular...doesn't take a lot to hear cannibis.

    Exodus 30:23 is where you will find it. in the description of the annointing oil used in the tabernacle.

    I love this stuff...

    ~ I'm having a cookie to celebrate ;)
  2. HappyMan

    HappyMan Subscriber

    Interesting, was the plant growing wild in the biblical world? Also along this topic, I ordered a book that examins drug use and religous development. : The Mystery of Manna: The Psychedelic Sacrament of the Bible by Daniel Merkur. I'll let everyone know if it contains anything interesting.
  3. Shaman

    Shaman Seasoned Activist

    The Terrence McKenna theory that manna is a certian little mushroom (that wee're not going to talk about here) is pretty compelling...
    Mama = COOL! Mazeltov!
    Heh and then there's Genesis 1:29 which gives us authority to use this plant...
  4. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    Genisis 1:29 is ..."they shall be yours for food"... while cannabis can be used for food, the first reference to it by name is in Exodus.

    Was a specific plant known for its properties and collected or traded for purposes of creating the oil and I'm sure a supply was used for other purposes.

    Manna is the sap of a cactus indigeonous tot eh Sinai, where it still grows today. When the cactus is pierced by the ants that live off it, its sap runs out ans in the chill before dawn will harden into a small wafer like substance about the size of a large seed. it very sweet and must be harvested prior to dawn otherwsie the sun melts it and the ants eat it. For more information read: Werner Keller "The Bible As History"

    The miracle of manna was not that it comes from an indigeonous plant but rather that there was enough of it to sustain a population of over 2 million!

    G_d never breaks his own rules in order to perform a miracle.
  5. tziporah

    tziporah Guest

    A closer look at the Hebrew


    I pulled out my Tanakh to look at Exodus 30:22-23 to check out the reference....the text says (forgive the transliteration- i don't have Hebrew fonts!): "v'atah kach l'cha...kinman be'sem...u'kneh-bosem." The plural isn't used here (the masculine plural ends with "im")'sem/bosem means "fragrant", and the translation is then "and you will take for yourself...fragrant cinammon and fragrant cane." The word fragrant is connected to the word "samim" which means spices. Interestingly, this is the word in modern Hebrew for drugs. I'm all for looking for bud in the Torah, but I don't think the kaneh-bosem is very telling, at least from this passage. I'm going to look in my Biblical concordance and find other contexts in which the word appears to shed a little more light on this...

    Peace and Lehitraot :wave:
  6. SmokedupSouth

    SmokedupSouth New Member

    "In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yeilded her fruit every month: and the ;eaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations" -Revelations 22:2

    I suppose that if the tree of life is our friend pot, then more power to us.

    ps~anybody with a Bible program on their computer, or who is a Bible major, look up as many references to the "tree of life" as you can find, it might be interesting.

    heres the link, what I did was just run a search for "tree of life" in the King James version
    Tree od Life verses
  7. techno_trancer

    techno_trancer New Member

    wow, bud in the bible, sweet, tobad i dont believe in a greater power :)
  8. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    Tziporah...shalom shalom!

    Of course I left the Hebrew Tanakh at the in-laws so I'm sitting here with the English racking my brain trying to remeber if it was a "yud" "mem" ending giving the plural possesive(masculine plural?) But now that I'm thinking it through, bosm (besm) would be singular, bosm'im (besm'im) would be plural.

    Now my search is for the etymology of the bosm or besm especially as you point out the use of the term s'mim to mean "any drug" as opposed to any spice! Interesting that it is a word specific to the intoxicant effect of the subject, not it's sweet smell.

    I found this in my research. Etymologist Sara Benetowa of the Institute of Anthropological Sciences in Warsaw discovered in 1936, the connection between kaneh bosm in the Old Testament as the original Semitic Hebrew origins of the word cannabis. That was in Poland right before WWII -- I'm curious to see if Sara survived the Shoah/Holocasut. Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 1980 confirmed this information as correct. The five passages that experienced the "missing" are Exodus 30:23; Song of Solomon 4:14; Isaiah 43:24; Jeremiah 6:20; & Ezekiel 27:19.

    At the conclusion of Shabbat on Saturday at sundown an intimate ritual is held in the home dividing the sabbath day from the rest of the week, and in that ceremony a Spice Box is brought out and it's fragrance inhaled to sense the sweetness of the Sabbath and prepare for the coming of a fresh new week. The box is referred to this day as a Besmim Box... and a prayer is said that basically translates to:

    Blessed art Thou oh Lord, King of the Universe who has granted us the "full enjoyment" of besmim, Amen

    ...Papa and I use Kaneh-besmim -- and everything old is new again :p

    For a wonderful reference to this material the following link
    is great. Kaneh Bosm

    This conversation is so cool :cool:

    And as we say here in the south ...shavuah tov (Good Week) :wave:

    ~ have a cookie ;)

    Mama Budz
  9. Xzoomd

    Xzoomd Guest

    u may not post often...but respect is in-line when you do....
  10. Bongzilla

    Bongzilla Seasoned Activist

    Found these ones interesting - maybe the bible promotes legalization? :D every herb of the land (Exodus 10:12).

    He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man. ...(Psalm 104:14).
  11. Hey my herb smoking homies! Haven't talked to you guys in a few milleniums. Anyway, right on bongzila, those are great passages. The Bible totally promotes legalization of a plant that was created by God, as opposed to the synthetics that man tries to exalt above his own creation.

    The bible I think also hints toward zen meditation. In psalms, I don't have the verse, but I know it says something like "Be still, and know that I'm God". That verse rules. I've felt that indescribable virtue flow within me while smoking the good herb. I know Jesus would be cool with Christians toking, but not how most of you guys use it. I don't think God would be cool with daily smoking, but for occasional use its all good. Like the good Aristotle said, "Everything in moderation". I recently decided to take a break from the herb, and I don't know when I'm coming back, but I'm just going with what God wants me to do. I think I'm at a stage where I think God is trying to prepare me for bigger things, and weed probably wouldn't benefit me too much right now. But I know I'll be back, but first, I think I need to take care of some stuff, but I know it'll all be worth the break when I take that first toke. Peace out.
  12. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest


    Good to see you man!

    All the Love and Joy of the Season be with you now and throughout the New Year ...and may we enjoy it with Peace and Prosperity and the Liberty of Freedom for All Humankind

    ~ have a cookie ;)


    CLUBFOOT Guest


    for me this is the most powerful aspect of the marijuana issue. i hope i can shed some light. i would like to ask Mama budz if she has read Green Gold the tree of life . Marijuana in Magic & Chris Bennet Lynn Osburn Judy Osburn.?( google it) it documents all the biblical references to marijuana. if you are interested in the subject, i advise you to get a copy. here are a few of the references metioned :

    exudos 30: 23
    jeremiah 6:20
    ezekial 27:19
    1 kings 14:23
    2 chon 24: 4,5
    song 4: 8, 14
    isaiah 43: 23-24
    isaiah 6 : 4-7
    like you said the terms were improperly translated so you can gt any king james or english bible that hs an index and look up sweet cane or calamus and when you read those references realize that they are actually referring to marijuana. to the doubters( i see one on this board), the term calamus cant be accurate theplant is nearly worthles and does not emit an aromaitc odor like incense. truth be told the bible has been mistranslated on many subjects.
  14. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest


    Yes I am familiar with the Bennet book, but prefer to go further back to the source of the etymology and that takes you right back to the Hebrew and to the Tanakh (what is referred to in Christianity as the Old Testemant).

    Exodus 30:23 is the first exact reference tot he plant by name and you are correct that it was "mis-translated" into the extant versions of the King James and other popular bibles as calamus.

    Of more interest to me is the pre-biblical use of the plant as well, and the cults of Ashera/Ishtar/Ashtarte which are the Goddess cults and survive to this day in various and fascinating incarnations.

    As cannabis was early on recognized as a being a plant of a female and male nature (there are female and male plants) it has been used in fertility rituals since, well, fertilitiy rituals were ritualized :)

    A parallel can be drawn between the timelines of the biblical restrictions of Goddess worship and the manner in which the use of caanibis has fallen out of favor over the past 2500 years.

    Now that I find fascinating...of course, I've been known to smoke pot :p

    ~ have a cookie

    CLUBFOOT Guest

    why is this interesting?

    the pre-biblical use of the drug is a topic almost completely separate and on to itself. but as this topic relates to the western attitudes towards drugs, this information is earth shattering. I can not think of any church which does not say that using drugs is immoral. yet it is pretty much documented that drugs have been an integral part of every major religion in the world. and how many times have you heard a politician say that using drugs is wrong? Donna shalala said it. and many others have too. and if you said that marijuana use isendorsed in the bible most people would scoff in disbelief. if this information was at the center of nation wide debate it could change the way many peope feel about drug use. it would be hard for them to say that its immoral when thier bibles say it is not. then the absurdity of locking drug users up would seem even more extreme because before this revelation they were viewed as sinners but afterward they can be seen as people involved in an activity endorsed by the bible.
  16. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    Re: why is this interesting?

    I didn't state drug use was endorsed by the bible. I stated that cannibis is mentioned in the bible for the first time specifically by name in Exodus 30:23.

    It's use is not endorsed for the common people. In fact it's use in in the recipe for annointing oil is strictly limited.

    This is in contrast to its more wide use in the religions of the Asian Steppes and its use in the Goddess centered and Fertility centered religions that predate the bible in the Fertile Crescent and Ethopia (Africa)

    If we were to say the biblical era and it's predating historical mythos on which it is based are roughly 5,000 years in the past, what occured in mankind that created a situation where the use of cannabis -- one highly prized mind expanding, highly useful pharmeceutical, fibrous, edible plant -- went from being widely used to it's use being tightly governed six millenia ago?

    CLUBFOOT Guest

    ordinary people?

    It may or may not be endorsed for common people. I dont own a copy of green gold so i cant check. I think your incorrect though. I dont know what you mean by ordinary people. please define this term. isnt jacob, in Isaiah 43:23-24 , an ordinary person? they used it for religious purposes so the people in question are hebrews . but are you saying that hebrews we not ordinary people? when i see a jew today or any religious person i think of them as ordinary people. their not automatically kings, presidents royalty,etc. their just ordiny people who believe in religion. and part of that religiopus status, if i understand correctly, was to go to a special struture, which was on every hebrew property, and participate in annointing with oil and burnt offerings. i dont know whether it falls into burnt offerings but one of the things burned was incense . marijuana was one of the things they used as incense. the smoke from the marijuana filled the room and common sense tells you that if smoke fills a room you will breath it.that was the purpose of burning it.most people refer to the result as a contact high. so itswas not just used for annointing. aside from that, the bible endorses the use of alcohol for ordinary people on an everyday bases. not just for religious purposes.the point of green gold is that people from all major religions ingested drugs aspart of their religious rituals. peyote for the indians, wine for christians,etc.
  18. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    The oil was used to annoint the ark of the covenant and the Kohanic Priests and later the High Priests and the Temple in Jerusalem. It was used to annoint the Kings of the Davidic line but was not used to annoint the Kings outside the Davidic line.

    To my knowledge it was not used in common homes as incense

    CLUBFOOT Guest

    need more info

    Well i will have to check on whether ordinary people used it but you do admit that someone in the hebrew community did use it as incense in which it was burned and inhaled? if so thats ingestion. no different from someone smoking a joint. ingestion is ingestion.
  20. Mamabudz

    Mamabudz Guest

    Re: need more info

    No, that's not what I stated. Refrain from misquotation.

    ~ have a cookie

Share This Page