Hey, we know about cannabis as a medicine and as a recreational substance, but what about cannabis as a spiritual sacrament?
—Obi Juan Tadoobie
Good question. Cannabis has been used as a religious sacrament for thousands of years. Of course, everyone knows about the Rastafarians, the Jamaican religion that believes cannabis to be the “tree of life” and uses cannabis in their religious ceremonies. But did you also know that the Hindu religion also uses cannabis? During the Holi Festival, adherents drink bhang (it’s like a cannabis-infused yogurt) to cleanse the body and soul. Taoists, the ancient Norse religion and many other sects and cults also promote cannabis as a way to let go of earthly worries while guiding the spirit toward salvation or enlightenment. I have even attended a canna-centric Passover Seder. But just because your religion allows you to use marijuana doesn’t mean that the federal government is going to let you open a church and smoke all day. Reverend Eddy Lepp tried a religious defense for his pot farm in Lake County and got 10 years in prison. So, enjoy your cannabis and your religion, but be careful with the feds if you are trying to open a church. Selah!
I heard that once legalization becomes a thing, if you have a recommendation, you won’t have to pay a tax at dispensaries? Is that true?
Yes it is. As I understand it, California medical cannabis patients can avoid having to pay state tax on medical cannabis purchases. However, said patient will need to get a county-issued medical cannabis card. Getting a card is simple, but a little expensive. But if you are purchasing large amounts of cannabis for your medical condition, it could be worth it.
With legalization on the horizon, will we see more pot-related events like we see with alcohol? Pot pairings or wine and painting, but now with pot instead?
—Sosh L. N. Tercorse
It’s already happening. I’m throwing a fancy-pants cannabis tasting party on September 16. Groupon and Eventbrite send me notices about upscale cannabis-infused dinner parties all the time. And specific to your question, there’s already a thing called Puff Pass and Paint (https://puffpassandpaint.com), which will allow you to get in touch with you inner Bob Ross. Happy trees, indeed. Just like booze, weed is a social drug. Folks like to get together not just to smoke, but to smoke and then do something. I can see a future where cannabis-themed dinner parties (or “bluntch” for the early risers), bowling leagues, softball teams (really, really slow pitch), drum circles (OK, drum circles are already cannabis-heavy) or whatever are all the rage. Cannabis makes activities just a little more fun. And stoners usually bring good snacks.