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ALTERED STATE OR CONCIOUSNESSMartin McHaleThe green industry is now as busy as a one legged man in a butt kicking competition. And about time too, because for a long time, that “shoe” was literally on the other foot.What has attributed to this growth path? Was it an awakening or consciousness? Or are we finally being honest about our love for an altered state of awareness?Either way, natural products, and cannabis in particular, are forming an increasingly important role in our wellbeing.
To understand how society’s renewed embrace of the flowering herb came about, you just need to dig.
Ya dig?LOVE (IS) THE DRUGMany species, given the chance, will take advantage of mind altering chemicals. From the wallabies in Tasmania getting high on opium from the local poppy fields, to the African elephant getting drunk on the fermented fruit of the Marula tree. Reindeers favour magic mushrooms, while horses are loco for locoweed. And this desire for an altered state of consciousness is also found in us homo sapiens.
Today, in our society, we favour alcohol and nicotine as our primary source of “feeling groovy”. But this wasn’t always the case. You could find Opium Dens in London just 100 years ago.
Cocoa leaves (cocaine) were used as a stimulant for many thousands of years by the indigenous people of the Andes. And our favourite “weed” has been used by humans for millennia. WallabyAfrican ElephantReindeerHorseThen 50 years ago it all became illegal and we were left with booze and fags. SO WHAT HAPPENED?Politicians and Religious leaders that’s what. Or as Wikipedia so delicately puts it “The prohibition of drugs through sumptuary legislation or religious law is a common means of attempting to prevent the recreational use of certain intoxicating substances.” The problem with this, is that prohibition is illogical, and doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. A situation all South Africans understand all too well, having recently endured irrational lockdown regulations during the COVID 19 pandemic.
One could even argue that certain leaders relished the new draconian framework, and the stricter social controls that limited our freedom and choices.
Our society was complaint for some time too. But then came the push back, and this societal awakening is the key that unlocks acceptability. I digress, back to the 1970’s and the asshole that makes NDZ look like a choir angel. His name was Harry Anslinger. He was America’s first drug czar and his plan was so devilish, you could put a tail on it and call it Beelzebub. He wrote a book called “Marijuana — Assassin of Youth”, in which he claimed the suicide of a young girl in Chicago, who leapt from a window to her death, was the work of marijuana. And two boys high on marijuana had killed a cop, while another had chopped up his whole family with an axe. Anslinger pointed to two culprits: The devil weed itself, and the Black jazz musicians he was sure were responsible for its widespread use.
It was sold as a “war on drugs” but it was the enforcement of control though judicial mechanisms.
Only when we challenge this control, and expose it for what it is, can we reclaim our freedom. Harry Anslinger (Source: NY Times)(Sobering fact - Almost 50% of Federal prisoners are serving time for drug offences in the US).A LONG AND WINDING ROADNow, before you do-gooders, you finger snappers and toe tappers crucify me on the cross of promoting the widespread use and legalisation of drugs. That’s not the case. But we are, and should be reviewing cannabis.
The anti-marijuana campaign has been built on opposition for its recreational use, not on its medicinal properties. And it’s these healing attributes that form the thin end of the wedge for the questioning and social acceptance of the green industry we see rising today. And, in the same way we challenged NDZ about buying a pie during lockdown level 4, we, as society, should be contesting illogical and archaic legislation around marijuana.
This social “push back” has equally been enabled by the separation and isolation of CBD. Remove the recreational angle, and there is no basis for any objection or restriction. Basically, you get to stick it to The Man.
And it doesn’t just end here. This week a researcher at John Hopkins University School of Medicine made an important step toward medical approval for MDMA, the illegal drug popularly known as Ecstasy or Molly. It has shown to bring relief to those suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder when paired with talk therapy.
We certainly live in interesting times, and as such, we have a responsibility to THINK. To challenge what we think we know. A rise in consciousness will balance this equation we call life. It opens the door for a happy, healthier you. So, go and get that CDB health tonic or that cannabis face wash. Be part of the awakening that’s happening on a global scale.References: Wikipedia, The NY Times & Alexandra Chasin (Assassin of Youth: A Kaleidoscopic History of Harry J. Anslinger’s War on Drugs)