Today, people tend to associate cannabis plants with Mexico, for good reason. For decades, Narcos smuggled crops into the United States and Europe. Together with California, Mexico is known for producing some of the best cannabis in the world. Sinaloa, Nayarit, Jalisco, Michoacan, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Chihuahua, Sonora and Durango, where the largest farms are located, all have the best climate for cannabis cultivation. Annual temperatures range from 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Cool, long nights and low humidity.
However, long before cannabis was introduced into the New World and became synonymous with it, cannabis was cultivated on land in Central Asia. However, initially, cannabis and hemp plants were grown on stems rather than leaves and could be processed into strong and durable ropes.
According to excavations, humans have been using hemp rope since the Neolithic period. On the other hand, the earliest evidence of cannabis burning dates back to 3500 BC and is attributed to modern Romanian Kurgan. This Proto-Indo-European tribe probably burned plants as part of rituals and rituals. This is a practice that has spread eastward as practitioners migrate. It’s hard to say why Kurgan burned cannabis. They may have accidentally discovered the psychoactive properties of plants, but they have only discovered that smoke has increased their connection to all spiritual things.
The earliest evidence of smoking Cannabis comes from the Pamir Mountains in western China. There, at a 2500-year-old tomb, researchers found THC residues in a burner of a burnt pipe that was believed to have been used for a funeral. (A similar pipe dating back to the 12th century BC was later discovered in Ethiopia and left there by another culture). These devices produce much more powerful overvalues compared to pies. However, given that it is located in the basement, it is no exaggeration to say that it was used only for ceremonies, not for entertainment.
Some scholars claim that cannabis is an important ingredient in Soma, a ceremonial drink made by the Indo-Aryans of the Vedas in northern India. Soma was made by extracting juice from an unknown plant, as described in Rigveda, a collection of ancient Sanskrit hymns. It has been reported that Soma induces a feeling of euphoria when taken in small doses. At high doses, it hallucinated people and lost their sense of time. All three of these effects are due to cannabis, but even if cannabis isn’t the main ingredient in Soma, it could have been combined with psychedelics, also known as magic mushrooms.
With the exception of ropes, cannabis was mostly processed into medicine. When Hindus in India collapsed in the “hot breath of the gods,” healers treated the disease with cannabis smoke. The logic behind this treatment was not exactly scientific. Cannabis was thought to have healing powers because it was the favorite food of the best stoner Shiva, also known as the “lord of the van.” In fact, cannabis should have been able to reduce fever because THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, acts on the hypothalamus to lower body temperature.
The Assyrians used cannabis in religious rather than medical contexts, burning cannabis in the temple and giving off a scent that seemed to soothe the gods. Sources in the region call cannabis Knubu, which suggests the possible origin of the language we use today. The Assyrian Empire was conceived in the 21st century BC and lasted until the 7th century. During this time, it swallowed much of modern Iraq and parts of Iran, Kuwait, Syria and Turkey. Through trade and conquest, the Assyrian tradition has spread to neighboring societies, including Dacians, Thracians, and Scythians. The latter was clearly one of the first to consume cannabis in an entertaining way.
The Scythians were part of the nomadic culture of Central Asia that flourished between 900 BC and about 200 BC. Originating in northern Siberia, the Scythian tribes settled on the Black Sea coast, where they came into contact with the ancient Greeks. When the Scythians died, their friends and family burned hemp in a tent to commemorate their death. While Kurgans and Assyrians burn cannabis outdoors or in large indoor spaces, Scythians basically put themselves in hotboxes at all funerals. At least it’s an image received from the historian Herodotus. He writes: [the hemp smoke] They are so happy to bark. Therefore, the main purpose of this ritual was to send out the dead, which obviously also helped to entertain the livelihood.
Herodotus did not live among the Scythians, but his observations appear to have been confirmed by archaeological excavations. Archaeologists have discovered fossilized cannabis seeds left between the 5th and 2nd centuries BC in the Scythian camp in western Mongolia.
The Romans also consumed cannabis for their own enjoyment, but not the way you expected. Like many societies in classical antiquity, they harvested plants for seeds rather than leaves that were discarded as waste. When ground, the seeds were used in medicine. When fried, it was served as a delicacy at a gorgeous dinner party. Roman chefs mentioned cannabis seeds in the same breath as caviar and cakes. Garen, a well-known Roman doctor, writes that it was consumed “to stimulate the desire to drink.” Today, it is the seeds, not the leaves, that are considered useless. However, the Romans believed that they also had an intoxicating nature. Garen adds that when consumed in large quantities, seeds will send people into “warm and toxic steam.”
Cannabis was so widely consumed in classical antiquity that people raised the same questions and concerns that we are discussing today. For example, Greek doctor Pedanius Dioscorides wrote that the spherical seeds of a plant “overeat can reduce sexual performance.” Modern cannabis users are too aware of the connection, even if they don’t eat the seeds. As Healthline states, cannabis “is often associated with side effects that can affect sexual health, such as erectile dysfunction.” Like some psychedelics, the general euphoria produced by cannabis can counteract or negate the acceptance of sexual stimuli.
Let’s skip a little ahead. Amusement smoking has been particularly popular since the 9th century AD. In the Middle East and West Asia, Islamic believers have become accustomed to their scriptures, the Koran, for the simple but somewhat interesting reason that they ban the consumption of alcohol and various other addictive substances. Fortunately for the Islamic Stoner, the Koran said nothing about weeds. Of course, they smoked not only weeds, but also hashish.
Skip again, this time in the 16th century, the century when cannabis arrived in the New World, and for the sole purpose of making ropes. In fact, Americans didn’t start weeding until about 100 years ago, when Mexican immigrants arrived in search of evacuation from the Mexican Revolution. For decades, the US government has been blind to this harmless, multicultural, and ancient practice. But this changed when Washington turned the wrath of the unemployed toward their Mexican brothers during the Great Depression. After thousands of years of peaceful consumption, cannabis was suddenly accused of being an “evil weed,” and in 1937 the United States became the first country in the world to criminalize cannabis at the national level.
The rest is still in history at this point.