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What is Cantheism? The Religious Use of Cannabis. How to get ordained for free.
By Admins (from 25/04/2014 @ 06:03:03, in en - Global Observatory, read 1535 times)

There are many reasons why people smoke marijuana. Some do it recreationally, some for medical purposes, and even some who consider it a part of their religion or spirituality.

In ancient times, cannabis was used in India by Hindu saints. Herodotus, an ancient Greek historian, wrote about its use in ceremonial practices by the Scythians, who were an Iranian tribe known for their use of horses.

In more recent times, the Rastafari movement that began in Jamaica promotes the spiritual use of marijuana. They use it as a way to worship their messiah, Haile Selassie, and as an aid to meditation. Rastafaris believe cannabis was the tree of life as described in the book of Genesis. Its use is sacramental and deeply religious, and it is believed smoking brings one closer to God. However, it is not necessary to smoke marijuana to be a Rastafari.

The Rastafari are not the only ones who hold this view of marijuana. In the year 2000 Roger Christie founded what is now known as the THC Ministry. In this religion, cannabis is considered to be a sacrament, not unlike communion. Members practice their religion with an emphasis on cannabis' healing and enlightening properties.

The cornerstone of the THC Ministry's belief is that the cultivation and use of marijuana is a human right provided by God and protected by the constitution. They believe cannabis was the original sacrament of almost every major world religion, and that the plant has the ability to satisfy our every desire.

The church's mission involves promoting use of the hemp plant and opening people's eyes to its benefits, and it is active in the legal and social issues surrounding its use in the Unites States. However, they ran into trouble with the law in 2010, when the founder and a few others associated with the ministry were accused of marijuana possession and trafficking. Since then, Christie has been in and out of court defending his beliefs.

Religions like Rastafari and the THC Ministry fall under an umbrella term called Cantheism. This is a modern term used for religions who base their beliefs on how awesome the cannabis plant is, while neither endorsing or condemning other religions or faiths that do not agree. Adherents to these religions can be known as cantheists, or cannabists. A treatise describing all the beliefs associated with Cantheism can be found here.

My favorite part about Cantheism is how seriously it approaches the matter. For example, the very first creed states: "I believe that Cannabis sativa is the useful cane and the true hemp." Part of the Cantheist code also states that followers  "will share (their) faith, but not be obnoxious about it."  In this kind of situation, I think it's important that religions centered around marijuana appear serious and professional, lest they be judged as a religion of pot heads.

Other churches, like the Universal Life Church, are welcoming to people who would consider themselves cantheists. Those who feel strongly about such matters and want to take it to the next level can even get ordained for free. The only requirement is that one's beliefs and practices may not discriminate or infringe on the rights of others.

While I personally have a more conservative approach, and would disagree with the notion of uniting cannabis and religion or spirituality, I understand why some choose to follow this path. Those who do should take it seriously, though, because faith and spirituality are serious things. With the way things are changing in the United States regarding marijuana laws, it seems logical to assume Cantheism will become more prevalent.

Source: weedist

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