"Legalize Pot on Religious Grounds" by Goscicki

Pardon me if I banter Christians more than the other organized religionists; I’m a product of the Catholic school system from grammar school to Boston College. The other religions are equally as farfetched. It’s just that I’m better acquainted with the doctrines of the church than the conventions and convictions of Judaism or Islam.

I rejected religious ideas at a very early age. The fables were too unbelievable, even to a seven year old: Jonah living in the belly of a whale; Adam and Eve chatting with that slimy, duplicitous snake; Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego hopping out of the furnace and scaring the piss out of mean King Nebuchadnezzar. Jesus thrashing the money changers for doing business in the temple was another one; He should at least have been as non-violent as Confucius or Buddha, methinks. What a tragic example he set by condoning violence when morally offended. How many fanatical soldiers lost their lives fighting while morally vexed —even in foreign lands where they didn’t belong?

In high school the fundamental concepts of Christianity perplexed and irritated me: An omnipotent being creates a peculiar ape that disobeys and offends him. He is angry and his feelings are hurt. So He wills that his only son transmogrifies into a peculiar ape and gets tortured by His brutish, bloodthirsty creation. All so God could appease himself.

So my first argument for legalized pot is to appeal to the country’s sense of fair play. Weed is to my religion what Holy Communion is to Catholicism. Communicants are told to believe bread and wine are the actual body and blood of Christ—no symbolism, we’re talking about real meat you can chew on. That’s okay. If they want to make believe they are sanctified and blessed by carrying the lord around in their bodies, that’s fine. It’s far out but à chaqu’un son gout. It’s a free country.

But grass has a tangible, perceivable effect on my brain at the molecular level. Neurotransmitters get stimulated and turned on. The basal ganglia and the limbic system in all of us— including other mammals—are rich in CBI receptors. These receptors are essentially absent in the medulla oblongata, the part of the brain stem that is responsible for respiratory and cardiovascular functions. There is no risk of respiratory or cardiovascular dysfunction as there is with many other drugs. CBI receptors appear to be responsible for the euphoric and anticonvulsive effects of cannabis.

The high’s quite real and I feel euphoric. Tetrahydrocanabinol is a euphoriant. At this very moment I’m as high as a GPS satellite, observing and enjoying earthly phenomena with godlike fancy. I’m listening to the glorious Camille Saint-Saens Organ Symphony, and at the organ’s grand entrance in the third movement, I feel I’m standing at the portals of heaven. Order, peace, harmony, reason. Art is the human intellect at its most sublime. The high leads me to believe that heaven on Earth is possible for all human beings once we shirk the stultifying effects of mine-controlling ideolgy and we resume evolving. Unlike Holy Communion, where the communicants feel a self-delusionary, make-believe high, there is an actual change of consciousness on grass.

I’ll never forget the first time a smoked some good weed. It was the time of Woodstock Nation, John Lennon, Allan Ginsberg and Bob Dylan. A psych major from NYU’s class of ’66 marched to the beat of different drummer, that’s for sure. When I witnessed how people acted on TV commercials—deranged by consumerism—I felt like I was from another planet.

Twenty-six years old, standing on the banks of Lake Willoughby in the lovely, rolling Green Mountains of northern Vermont. A kaleidoscope of chlorophylls and carotenes tickled my retina with shimmering light—earthy colors of rust and yellow, brown and beige, every shade of red that sunrays could irradiate. The leaves on the far embankment seemed to sparkle in the midday sun. The glinting crests of tiny wavelets on the lake blended with the leaves so as to present a panorama of continuous light—like a Monet or Cezanne.

As a NYC boy, the amorphous lake was the most beautiful natural beauty I had ever seen. Before that day, Central Park was the most beautiful nature I had ever experienced. The rise in consciousness was palpable.

On a nearby white birch tree, a lazy squirrel hung by his hind claws. Dangling upside down, propped up on his elbows, he confidently held an acorn like a kid with a bag of popcorn in front of a TV. He wasn’t afraid but with my delightful high I could absolutely determine he was wondering what I was doing there emitting such a peculiar ropy smell. I felt a holy communion all right, but with the living— mammal to mammal, each enjoying life in our own way.

Grass increases one’s connection with nature. I hesitate to make a blanket statement but it sure does for me and many people I know. The image of the squirrel stayed with me nearly fifty years.

Along Foliage Road on the other side of the lake, a dump truck intruded into my personal heaven. It hissed, growled and devoured the sleepy country road. The sounds were threatening and a conspicuous intrusion into the peacefulness of the lake. Over the tops of the tree, I could make out in the back of the truck plastic pipes and rubber tubing, flailing and whirling in all directions like the snakes of Hydra’s hair. The monster was undoubtedly headed for some construction site to devastate scenery as lovely as this.

Poor Earth.

With grass, the indoctrination and conditioning of school melt away like chains of ice. I didn’t passively accept that the driver had to earn a living. I viewed the lake and thought of Henry David Thoreau. What would he say about the dump truck meeting up with bull dozers and other earth movers? What misguided powers have preordained the truck to invade my idyllic reverie? Powers far-away, in glass and aluminum, cubical skyscraper offices. They have no idea what they are doing because they forfeited feeling for Lake Willoughby. Their religions have numbed their sensibilities and ability to empathize with nature and the biodiversity of life. Love and respect that belongs to Nature are diverted to a hallucinatory Moloch.

“Religion,” an interesting etymology. “Re,” of course, “again” or “back.” But “lig” refers to a tying, as in “ligature.” We’re talking about a reconnect, but unfortunately for humanity the retying has been to human organizations with bank accounts, presidents, boards of directors, real property and an army of working professionals. The Mother Church has usurped love and devotion that belongs to nature.

I felt like grabbing the truck driver (the logger, construction worker, land surveyor) and getting in his/er face: “Look, man, with all due respect, you don’t know what you’re doing. Think of how unfeeling and robotic you have to be to mutilate the land itself. What kind of people would devastate our nation’s ineffable natural beauty in favor of strip malls and shopping malls, chemical plants and plastic factories? You need to reconnect. Hop out of your mental cage and smell the wildflowers—the bars of the cage are all in your head.”

As I stared across the shimmering lake, a chilly New England breeze made me feel the hair on my arms and blood streaming faster down my legs. A dappled rock bass jumped a few yards away.

How wrong and sad it is that the truck driver pays respect, homage and love to a non-existent g
od rather than Nature. If he weren’t sidetracked by mythological, conditioned beliefs, he’d probably be getting high, enjoying the beauty of nature and art, striving to be a good person and caring about generations to follow. We grew out of the planet; there’s no doubt about it to a bio teacher. The wellbeing of all future life depends powerfully on how well we understand the cosmos and planet from which we arose abiogenetically (without parents) and evolved.

Now nearly fifty years after Lake Willoughby, Carl Sagan urges a new religion based on our perception of the cosmos as revealed by science. Instead of the writings of ancient goat-herders and fishermen, we need a religion based on information revealed by telescopes and microscopes, computers and spacecraft sent to the outer reaches of the solar system.

I dreamed of a new religion when I fantasized about scolding the truck driver. Weed can be our holy eucharist. Instead of each person mutely receiving a sterile wafer, people of a New Age religion will pass around a joint thumb to thumb and rap about philosophy, science and art, instead of maintaining humiliating silence with simulated piety. They’ll actively participate; they’ll be the religion because they are real. Instead of making sacrifices, they’ll share a peace pipe and have fun listening to music, perhaps enjoying views of nature by a pristine mountain lake.

How about John Lennon for the hippie religion’s first martyr and saint?

James Dean could be John the Baptist, urging the young not to repent but rebel. How wrong it is for professional clerics to teach kids that they are born in sin; how ungrateful to the serendipity of evolution to inculcate students with the belief that sex and their naked bodies are shameful and dirty.

Bob Dylan could be the first prophet.

Okay, maybe Dean shouldn’t be John the Baptist and John Lennon the first voice in the wilderness. Imagine there’s no religion at all. What difference does it make? It’ll be a disorganized religion. Some days we’ll meet on Wednesdays at 10 am, some nights on Tuesday at 11 pm. Who needs dogma and rituals? A disorganized religion belongs in a free country.

Churches and synagogues could be converted into community centers where lovers of the human condition congregate to have fun and get to know one another. Let’s produce plays and bring back poetry instead of watching TV. Let’s play our own game of baseball instead watching overpaid cheaters. Enjoying educational and humanistic activities is more beneficial to the community than listening to the same tiresome sermon week after week. Education makes you a better person.

(Please note: I’m not talking of any seizure of property. I’m speaking about the legal sale of church property due to lack of interest by the public—or when the churches are asked to pay their fair share of taxes.)

A 1960s song title: They called for a war and nobody volunteered. They called for a mass and nobody was interested.

Visionaries don’t care how unpopular or farfetched their ideas. I know humanity can not go on worshipping plastic idols forever: we are reproducing exponentially as millions starve every year. Every religion exhorts its following to spawn as many babies as possible. The planet is at its carrying capacity right now. It’s certain Gaia eventually will have enough of this nonsense and refuse to take any more abuse from the apish bipeds. If unbridled reproduction continues, Gaia will punish mankind’s imagined self importance and contemptible arrogance. Most of the world’s religionists have the delusion that we have some privilege in this vast cosmos other than our humble and limited consciousness.

As far as the slippery-slope argument goes, people don’t become homeless winos from a sip of burgundy. THC isn’t chemically related to the hard drugs. It’s not even close in composition. Legal oxycodone and its derivatives like Oxycortin and Percocet are chemically closer to heroin than marijuana. They are addictive and scientifically- documented depressants to the central nervous system. Plus there are terrible side effects like constipation and lethargy. With grass you can’t even overdose because you’ll pass out and wake up in the morning without even a hangover.

Denis Miller asserts in one of his gigs, “If Prozac and marijuana went head to head as the drug of choice, Prozac would lose.” Pot is illegal because Big Pharma wants it that way and wastes millions on bogus organizations like Partnership for a Drug-free America and DARE. Money that could have been used fixing up inner city schools or sheltering the homeless.

To present evidence that marijuana is not a source of disease, I end this post with a link to an interview last year with my friends Dr. Lester Grinspoon of Harvard and radio host, Lynn Thompson of Living on Purpose.com.


As far as psychological addiction goes, I’m reminded of the late comedian Bill Hicks’ comment about Art Linkletter’s kid who jumped out the window. “Dork, why did she have to ruin it for everybody?” (Ironically, toxicology tests confirmed there was no evidence of LSD usage.) Just because something is good doesn’t mean you have the right to abuse it. We recommend responsible use. I’ve been smoking nearly 50 years but only on special occasions like parties or an opera. I don’t even like the sight of needles.

Perhaps President Obama at the 2012 Democratic Convention will repeat the words of FDR in ’32: “This convention wants repeal. Your candidate wants repeal.And I am confident that the United States of America wants repeal.”

But he’ll be talking about grass instead of booze. Just ask the eighty million of our citizens who have tried grass with zesty inhales.

32 Responses to “"Legalize Pot on Religious Grounds" by Goscicki”

  1. Paul says:

    I do not have to discuss the history of marijuana with you. You know our current laws are out of date and I believe it is against what most of us believe in, God. You see we live in a world where over 90% of the people in it believe in some form of God. The argument is simple: god created cannabis and man made alcohol, who do you trust? The evidence is in our own genetic traits. As I am sure you already know, both man and animal have THC receptors. I believe this plant – NOT a chemical made, once again, made by man – is the reason for our advanced society we know today however we only know a fraction of our true history on earth. Evolution – a contradiction to religion or proof of its existence? Why can’t god be behind evolution too? He just made man earlier than we think. I believe the first to get high were the animals thousands of years before man ever stood up. How do they seem to live in such harmony and we live in such chaos? We are smarter and more advanced right? The naturally growing plant had to be around for the animals to develop the THC receptors. How did the monkeys hit a bong? They didn’t, but that didn’t mean God didn’t let them smoke it. Doesn’t lightening start fires all the time? Is it not possible that these strikes sometimes set a blaze the naturally growing marijuana in the area? Marijuana is also edible so its more likely they ate it. It is no secret that marijuana makes you think “outside the box” so our ancestors must have experienced these same feelings. Our own American history began on a canvas paper. Do you think Ben Franklin would have made such an impact if he didn’t smoke marijuana? In fact, didn’t man first create fire? I wonder what he was trying to light. The “not your father’s marijuana” argument helps argue the evolution factor. Yes, we are better at cultivating it, which has made it cleaner and healthier to enjoy. Now we can focus on the medicinal capabilities of marijuana. I have seen videos of uncontrollable turrets be cured in less than 5 minutes of smoking a joint. From violent shakes to calm and collective – modern medicine and science can not beat that. Who knows what we could cure from cross-pollinating different strains.

    So why do I smoke marijuana? Because I believe in God. I believe God created marijuana or else it would not be on earth. I believe it has helped every civilization grow and expand by technological advances that have come from the effects of marijuana. I believe we owe everything to marijuana. It is time to end these laws that restrict the greatest gift God has ever given us. Imagine, a plant that makes you feel euphoric and peaceful? Harmony defines nature’s structure and the genius behind God’s work. Marijuana is the proof of God and his intentions. God wants you to be peaceful and happy. We need to change our laws and end this war on God. Marijuana has hundreds of byproducts but the bud that makes you high is the only one of these that is ever discussed. Most people just simply do not know enough about marijuana.

    I will never stop smoking marijuana and will someday encourage my own children to use it as responsibly as I do. It has relieved nausea brought on from painkillers from my several sports injury surgeries. It has relaxed me after a hard workout. It brings people together in ways no other thing on earth can. It is the reason I started a business and the drive behind a lot of my creativity. Most of my success has come from ideas created in a group setting smoking marijuana and talking about whatever comes up. You can easily prove this in an experiment. Take two groups of the most unlikely people to get along and put them in a room. Separate the two groups and provide them with only food, water and bathroom. Give one group marijuana and the other nothing and see what happens. I can guarantee the group that gets to smoke marijuana will not fight and may possibly invent the next light bulb in their discussions. The group with no form of entertainment other than the other people in the room will eventually have some quarreling.

    So you see man has always smoked marijuana, I will always smoke marijuana, and we will continue to smoke marijuana. Changing our laws could have a positive effect on the world’s opinion of the greatest thing to happen to man; besides the fire we invented to smoke it.

  2. Aristopus says:

    I don’t believe God has evolved yet, but I certainly agree with the outcome of your experiment. I’d like to see the Arabs and Jews get together, smoke a little herb, and enjoy the fun of this life for the little time that they have. MJ makes people less aggressive; I’m pretty sure of that.

    The American Indians and other primitive peoples certainly made the grass-God connection as you describe. They were animists, however, much different from our modern monotheistic religionsists.

    The point of my essay is that the primitive tribes aren’t the ones devastating the rain forect. Modern religions have separated them from nature

  3. NewOldSalt says:

    At the risk of sounding like I’m a contrarian to what you wrote:
    “god created cannabis and man made alcohol”

    This is not entirely true. Yeast makes alcohol. I have seen a number of shows on TV that show animals getting drunk under various trees because they are eating fermented fruit. All natural. No doubt early humans found out about it too, liked it, figured out the process, and “domesticated” it.

    “Slimy snake.” Hm… I can’t say I’ve ever heard of a slimy snake. 🙂

    “Grass increases one’s connection with nature. I hesitate to make a blanket statement but it sure does for me and many people I know. “

    Perhaps it’s more of an “enabler” or something that helps one find patterns. As the first commenter noted it makes him/her think more about God, as it does with me. Clearly it does not have that effect on you. This is not to imply that I don’t feel my connection with nature increase, it does that too.

    Frankly, mushrooms are much better, imho, than marijuana with regard to making patterns.

    “Every religion exhorts its following to spawn as many babies as possible. “

    This is not true. Have you heard of the Shakers? In fact they have nearly gone out of existence because they promote the concept of not having babies.

    However, I fully agree with the notion the Roman Catholic church has gone overboard with promoting reproduction. I have long been at odds with them over this.

    A related essay: Earth to Moon

    And certainly there is evidence that other religions are trying to wipe out other civilizations by baby production. I heard a statistic recently that 40% of a population in the news is recently, is under 14 years old! They all have something similar to “Octomom” (really 14 kids) syndrome.

    – Fellow Saint-Saëns fan.

  4. TetrisHydraCanOfBeanOil says:

    This is depressing as fuck… how can you be a stoner and such a downer at the same time? I don’t get it… I mean, I respect your viewpoints and philosophies (I’m a Roman Catholic anarchist, nobody agrees with me haha) but it’s so sad to see someone so down because they’ve ditched God for bud. I mean I smoke because I love God. Hell if I wasn’t a Christian I probably wouldn’t even be smoking pot.

    I don’t know, it’s just my two cents.

  5. Aristopus says:

    Tetris, I don’t know what precisely you find distressing, but it’s probably the call for a new religion. If it’s the part about runaway construction and urban sprawl, I don’t think you’re seeing the big picture.

    We are raping the planet and causing the extinction of the other life forms to the tune of 8,000 per year.

    The Amazon rain forest is less than half of what it was at the turn of the last century. It’s got nothing to do with mj. It would be a sad situation no matter what I did.

  6. CBD says:

    To paul, although i do agree booze and nicotine laws are hypocritical, saying man made booze is a poor argument. Most mammals crave booze, why?, because it is a sign of high nutritional value. (also perhaps a neat dif feeling) Arent those peaches or kiwis that are just about to turn to rotten bubbling mush the best??

    Anyways, thanks Dr. Grinspoon, heaven is on earth. I agree with pretty much all you say, but (at least for me) to not be a hypocritical, your comments about plastics and cities being bad should be changed. I say this because as im sure you know societies great accomplishments that you have repeatedly stated you enjoy such as opera and art, can and would not be if there was not these things. Its a fairly accepted fact that art and other things did not really happen until established civilization with large farms that could feed multiple people came about. Myself i would not reject medical advancements from IV to nano tech killing cancers because i didnt think plastics are good as i am sure most would agree. That being said i do think there is a happy medium but have no idea how or if it is really possible to accomplish. I agree we all do need to be more connected to nature and our food, this perhaps will reduce over usage and create a strong fulfilled feeling that we try to get from toys and soda pop.

  7. aerodarts says:

    Very interesting content. DNA secrets were found by a man on LSD. Anyone know about that?

  8. Darald A. says:

    I am a Disabled Veteran that was injured by a road side bomb in Iraq in 2005. The Army originally put me on Vicoden, Percaset, Valium, and Gabapentin, for my extensive and constant pain due to nerve damage and spinal damage. With these medicines my body build up a tolerance and I needed more and more over time. I almost overdosed, luckily my wife saved me. The Army’s fix for this was to prescribe me Morphine. At first 15mg of Morphine was ok but it got to the point of where I needed 150mg a day and I had VIOLENT moments when the morphine would wear out. After my wife helped me withdraw from it, we decided to try something more natural if you will. After discussing this with my doctor who agreed with me but given his profession, could not prescribe or recommend the use of medical grade Cannabis, I smoked for my first time and for the first time in YEARS I hardly had pain, and my nightmares were gone. It was a whole new outlook on life! I felt normal for the first time in a very long time and I had some type of quality of life. I could sleep through the night. My nerve pain was almost gone. To this day I still do not need to smoke more than I did the first time I smoked and best part is that I no longer run the risk of overdosing. I feel calm and happy, but most importantly the violent reactions over being pain free via morphine are gone! As a Veteran this is the best drug I could have ever been prescribed for not just pain but quality of life. I just wish sometimes people that make all these laws against Cannabis could experience the pain and low quality of life I have experienced due to my combat injury day after day. It is just too bad that certain states do not allow it due to the political point of views, and ignorance that has surrounded this plant, because it is a plant, for such a long time. I am being told that because some politician says this is a gateway drug, or an illegal drug, I have to live my life in misery and take prescribed narcotics which have severe side effects, and furthermore detrimental effects on my internal organs! I should have the right to choose what form of pain relief I should be prescribed, within reason, and is best for me. So far medical Cannabis is the best. The worst side effect I have with Cannabis are the munchies! Why do politicians and the drug companies have the right to tell me that I have to be miserable and endanger my health, just because they choose not to acknowledge a plant for its medicinal qualities, while they line their pockets with money?

  9. aerodarts says:

    To Darald,

    how did you get off the opiates? any tips?

  10. rodney platt says:

    Many people argue the fact of marjiuna being legal or illegal, but the fact remains it’s here, and eventually may the goverment will realize the good from marjiuna and stop being hypocrites and legalize it. It is said that over 80 percent of Americans today have smoked (or still smoke) marijuana… but how many accidents a year do you hear about – teenagers or adults – where was marijuana was involved? People need to view both sides for fairness before they should reach an opinion. If everyone can band together and perform marches and rallies and stay within the law, we can make this happen. So everyone interested, I’m working on organizing a march – but no smoking during the march and we have to keep it civil – please write back and we can plan together and work on getting it legalized, one march at a time!

  11. Carly says:

    Ok, I know I am at risk for attack by commenting on this but I don’t smoke weed. I did when I was in my early teens and I never liked it. I never liked the “buzz” that it gave me. I felt “out of control” of myself. I didn’t just do it once. I did it all of the time because my friends were doing it all of the time. Most of the time I just couldn’t WAIT for the “high” to wear off. I would have to completely disagree that this drug makes you more focused and alert. I found myself more forgetful and less reactive in most instances. Maybe that’s just me and it’s different for EVERYONE else, I don’t know. Now I’m 29 years old and I live with someone that is a habitual user. It drives me NUTS. I would agree that there are certain benefits in using marijuana for industrial and medicinal purposes, HOWEVER, can ANYONE tell me the benefits of recreational use? I see all of these pot users constantly argue about the benefits of every day use for all of these reasons that have nothing to do with their own situation. My husband isn’t terminally ill. He isn’t in constant pain. He is a very healthy and active 28 year old man. However, he smokes weed CONSTANTLY! And when he doesn’t have it around, he spends all of his time trying to find it! Who has it, where can he get it… I think it’s very addicting.. If he doesn’t have it, he’s a BEAR until he does. He can’t think right when he’s not using. He’s aggrivated, tired and mean. Once he gets it in his hands however, he’s instantly better. However, he’s very forgetful right after he goes outside and hits his bowl a few times. I hate that I tell him something and then later he has no idea what I’m talking about! Marijuana consumes his entire existence. If it comes down to a point where we’re broke because of extra expenses we didn’t anticipate, he will go out and try to borrow money to buy weed over buying things like MILK and other necessities in the house. Aside from this, he hacks up a lung EVERY MORNING! It’s disgusting. Everyone around him that smokes the way he does is exactly the same way. Now, I choose not to smoke because I don’t like the way it makes me feel. But I’m starting to HATE marijuana because of what it’s doing to our family! My husband was fine before he started smoking weed. He was an occasional user before hand but then he started doing a lot of physical labor at work, which caused him to smoke more. I would agree that taking things like Oxys and Percocets are dangerous and highly addictive so I’d rather him hit a joint every now and then, then to take pills on a daily basis, HOWEVER, he’s no longer doing the physical work, he’s no longer in any pain, he’s just using it to use. Tell me the benefits of that? I can’t even have a conversation with him anymore! He’s become so freakin STUPID and he talks over you, and in circles… when he’s sober, aside from being edgy and aggravated because he’s not high, at least I can have a conversation with him and he’ll remember what the hell we were talking about during the whole conversation! He argues with me all of the time that marijuana had NEVER killed ANYONE. He says that people don’t have car accidents because of it, they don’t die from over-use, it doesn’t cause cancer, NOTHING. Now before anyone comes back with “alcohol is this… and prescription meds are that…” I agree! I think alcohol should be illegal! But keep in mind, I’m not asking about those things. I’m asking about recreational use of marijuana. Not medicinal use, not industrial use.. recreational use. NO ONE has been able to give me a good argument in that instance! NO ONE! I’m hoping that one of you might be able to! So please, someone give me the benefits of what he’s doing! And can anyone HONESTLY say that it can’t cause things like lung cancer or that it can’t affect your body in ANY negative way? If you take something that alters your mind, good or bad, that’s not natural! I love how everyone says that God put weed here for us to smoke it! How do you know he wanted us to smoke it? Is smoking a natural thing that just happens with our bodies? Do we need to smoke something to survive? Maybe he wanted us to eat it.. but only in certain circumstances. How do you know that he didn’t just intend for us to use it to make clothing, shelter, and medicines rather than for recreational use? Now please understand that I’m merely asking these questions because of my PERSONAL experiences with marijuana. I’m not attacking any of you for using, I’m trying to understand. I believe everyone has their own experiences. But I would really like to know the actual TRUE BENEFITS of REC USE.

  12. Tyler says:

    Hey Carly. Sorry to hear about your unpleasant situation. If you don’t like your relationship, leave it. The man knows what he likes and what is good.

    If I was with someone like you, I would have to smoke double what I am now.
    There are no documented cases of cannabis causing cancer. None.
    No overdoses. Ever.
    Cannabis is safer than driving a car or eating at a fast food joint.

    Benefits of recreational use? Recreation!
    If you can’t identify the value of enjoying personal time, then you are too caught up in all this capitalistic malarky.
    Benefits: social lubrication, heightened senses, laughter, contentment, curiosity.

    You have never heard someone say, “Remember when we were all smoking blunts and then fucked each other up?”

  13. amanda says:

    carly,it sounds like your husband has some sort of mental issues & i agree you should probably tell him to get the hell out because he sounds like a total tool. as far as i know, the only kind of addiction you can get from marijuana is a mental one, which only constitutes a weak mind. i smoke for health reasons & recreational. as for the rec use, it just makes everyone a lot less of an asshole, at least it makes the assholes easier to deal with. i think if it was mandatory for everyone to get high, this would be a much nicer world to live in. i dont think anyone should have to answer for a damn thing they do that isnt bothering anyone else.

  14. Nita says:

    Hi Carly, my ex-husband was like that. He was a miserable jerk if he wasn’t high. I used to just pray he would go downstairs and get high so he would chill out. I didn’t smoke, but I noticed that when he did he was much more pleasant to be around, and was nicer to the kids. We were married for 22 years. We have been divorced for about 8 years now, and because we have kids we keep in touch, and are on friendly terms. Basically I think he was unhappy. Just an unhappy person. With a temper. Pot made him feel better. I used to think he was addicted to pot. Now I look back and think he was depressed and had some social anxiety. Smoking pot helped him. He would never go to a doctor. Never. I guess he could have taken anti-depressants and it could have helped him. I know someone who has taken them for years. Every time she tries to stop, she can’t stop crying. She just goes right back into depression. Did the anti-depressants cause the depression? Is she addicted to the anti-depressants? I don’t know. I don’t think so. I think people self-medicate. Some use alcohol, some use marijuana, some use prescription drugs. If I had the choice of who to be around, a drinker or a smoker, I’d take the smoker…hands down. To get right to the point, I think your hubby is self medicating. The key is to find out what is making him so unhappy, and try to fix it. Ultimately you have to decide if you want to live with this person. Have a real heart-to-heart with him (and yourself). Looking back at my own marriage, the marijuana wasn’t the problem, just a symptom. In my case, I’m happy living on my own without the stress and having to depend on a person who didn’t want to be depended on.

  15. Nita says:

    Hi Darald! I sure do relate to what you are saying. I live with chronic pain and was lucky enough to live in a state with access to Medical marijuana. Now I don’t, and I to am seeing the number of narcotic pain relievers increase in order to find relief. I own a house in a state without compassionate care, and I’m seriously thinking of moving. Not a good time to sell my house, but I do like my liver, and I know with medical marijuana I wouldn’t have to take nearly as many pain meds. I wish there was a federal law protecting patients civil rights to choose the least harmful medicine, and the right to use it in the privacy of your own home. I can’t smoke it because I get urine tested an my pain doctor. So I just have to do what I have to do. It is a bitter pill to swallow knowing there is an alternative, but not here, and not legally.

  16. Amy P. says:

    Hello, I agree with the legalization of marijuana in most of our states, but I think it should not be smoked for recreational purposes, if you actually need it to stay “low” or get rid of anger issues, let me assure you there are other medications for that.

    I want to legalize it for prescriptions, for the people with pain, anorexia, and other disorders/diseases that marijuana could be that last and or the best solution for their predicament. I think people have grown a “cannabiphobia” against it, because of stoners. We need to get rid of that. Natural marijuana has virtually no side effects except for munchies, and it’s great.

  17. K says:

    This sounds so wonderful, I only wish I could find someone to help me in the uk with medical use. I just cannot understand why this is not legal in the uk for pain relief. If this plant can help so much I hope one day it will be legal to use if only to take away peoples pain.

  18. Michael says:

    All i know is this like so many of us… I smoke to feel better from the nausea that comes after taking some of the strongest drugs on the planet. Nothing works better than cannabis to relieve that kind of pain, that can make you insane. I, like so many others, have tried all the prescribed meds for nausea, and they do not work for me. Cannabis helps me live while taking these strong chemicals that help me live longer, and cannabis assists me to fight against all the pain of extreme nausea. regards, me.

  19. Michael says:

    excuse the spelling

  20. That Dude says:

    Can anyone tell me the name of a MM doctor in south Jersey. Ty

  21. Noelani says:

    Darald, I am very happy that you have found something that helps with the pain that came from being wounded while serving our country! I am the daughter of a retired marine, who served for 35 years. During his second tour of Vietnam, in 1969-70, we lived in a small college town. I was a sophomore in high school, at the time. There were several times during that year that I had a joint offered to me, while I was with friends. I turned it down each time. Not that I wasn’t tempted, but the last thing I wanted was for my father to hear that I had been caught doing something illegal.

    My dad had received a different assignment halfway through that deployment, to study the effects of drug abuse by young marines in Vietnam, which had become a very prevalent concern, by then. His opinion, after studying a great deal about it, was that marijuana should be legal. He said that the only way marijuana could lead people to addictive drugs was in the fact that the people selling the marijuana also sold those drugs. He said that many young marines in Vietnam had become addicted to opiates because the pushers would spike the marijuana with them. My dad and I, like millions of others, would have thought it would have become legal, long ago.

    I have severe fibromyalgia, which I have had for about 35 years. I take lots of strong pain meds, just to get through the day. If marijuana was legal, I think it is very likely that I would never have had to take prescription narcotics. I’d also bet that my youngest son would not have started smoking heroin. He started out with marijuana. His supplier got him started on the heroin, which he is now in treatment for.

    I think the benefits of legalizing marijuana would be tremendous and that it is totally insane that it is not only illegal, but classed as a level one drug, along with heroin! How on earth can the FDA say that marijuana has no recognized medical benefit and is more dangerous than cocaine, methamphetamine, and methadone, which my oldest son died from?

    If marijuana ever becomes legal, during my lifetime, I will plant some in the herb garden in my back yard. I appreciate those who are working to bring that about.

  22. Kabirvaani says:

    I write a blog on my experiences, voyages in search of altered states of consciousness with the hope of finding a deeper meaning in life. I consider myself, for a want of a better word, a spiritual seeker. I have been reading books, listening to a few self-styled new-age Gurus, and have been doing some thinking of my own. I am not a junkie. I consider myself a normal person with a normal job and a faimily to look after. I had heard and read about people getting deep insights into great metaphysical truths while taking psychedelic drugs like LSD and cannabis. After a lot of initial hesitation I decided to try cannabis. I take it once in two or three months, which , you will agree, does not make me an addict. I take it orally, one flat spoon with any non-alcoholic liquid. I also practice meditation occasionally. I take cannabis , not for pleasure or to get a high, but to re-discover myself.

  23. Kandis Patao says:

    Ack I knew you were gonna ask, lol. I went looking then got called away. If I recall, it was one of his videos, if you can find his youtube channel, it might be among them.

  24. Jim Geesman says:

    There have been many interesting comments regarding this plant, but until you’re willing to live and experiment things yourself, you don’t really know what marijuana might be for you. I’m what some people would consider an addict. I’m certainly committed to smoking it every day, which I’ve been doing since discovering it has anti-convulsant qualities over three and a half years ago. I’m also surviving brain cancer, so I’m going to keep smoking it like I do so long as my federal government doesn’t decide my adherence to my state laws is worth assaulting my personal freedoms over. I’m not hurting anyone by my smoking and I don’t sell or distribute any. Leave me alone, DEA. It’s a drug. It can turn some losers into bigger losers. We should all recognize that everyone is different. If you’re the type that doesn’t find any benefit to the use of this plant, that’s your problem. There are anxious, paranoid people whose weakened mental condition makes them hate cannabis and anyone who believes in its beneficial potential. They’ve fallen victim to decades of government deceit, propaganda and a mob mentality, and now deny scientific evidence. End this Prohibition. By all means, stop supporting any politician who supports the Drug War.

  25. punch1118 says:

    what is the current plan to have cannabis removed from schedule I classification? the DEA has a mob boss mentality and the pharmaceutical industry stuck so far up their ass they make al capone look good… this travesty must be end now so vote out anyone who wants to keep cannabis away from the people who choose to grow and use cannabis medicine

  26. John E says:

    hmm god and bud. one and the same. much as the tree of life and the ecsn are one in the same. 1998 it was anounced the return of the tree of life, each year has passed acordingly. how will we grow the tree in dark caves with the light of god? 🙂 on each side of the street… and they say christianity is nonsense.

  27. “At this very moment I’m as high as a GPS satellite, observing and enjoying earthly phenomena with godlike fancy.” Ha! You have a great way with words man!

  28. Mac says:

    Dr Grinspoon. Your argument is clear. I accept it. However, I am concerned that we do not mistake irrational opposition to the marijuana entheogen/medicine for an entirely rational reaction that is predicted by social-psychological theories.
    The authoritarian spectrum is a clear predictor of opposition to all entheogens, not least those that acquire widespread acceptance during times of conservative political dominance. The very notion of people mediating their own consciousness and physical symptoms of key vectors of social malaise – anxiety, stress, and God forbid the ability to rediscover intrinsic elation – this causes facial spasms in those with deep authoritarian impulses. Hopefully here I made my point.
    But if not, can you imagine the response to marijuana during the rise of the Nazis? It would have been viciously authoritarian.
    And the whole vendetta, the mania against cannabis, since the nineteen sixties, and some failed earlier risings, has been characterised by authoritarian tendencies.
    Show any inclination to explore and own your mind, your body, their deeply revelatory processes, and to an authoritarian this becomes a red rag.
    It is not a mania but a predictable response of the authoritarian personality.
    See Prof R Altemeyer
    Dr Alastair McGowan

  29. Looks like your ruffled a few feathers judging by the comments! Having grown up in a similar christian environment I feel like we had very similar thoughts from a young age. I too felt more connected to the earth after my first experience with good weed. I swear we could bring about world peace if we could get all the leaders of the world’s main religions to come together and smoke a little weed!

  30. Ramachandran Gopalan says:

    I really like this post. Highly recommend to everyone. Thank you.
    cannabis doctors

  31. Daniel S Lennox says:

    Hi All, I just want to ask if anyone ever tried using medical cannabis as an alternative meds? I have read many articles about medical marijuana and how it can help you in terms of chronic pain, glaucoma, eating disorder/anorexia, anxiety disorders and panic attacks, inflammation, even cancer and a lot more. Like this article about a marijuana strain called Nuken from:http://www.ilovegrowingmarijuana.com/nuken/ . Cbd and thc are also new to me and I don’t even smoke. If this is true I cant find any solid conclusive evidence that speaks to its efficacy. Any personal experience or testimonial would be highly appreciated. Thanks

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