The History of Cannabis
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24th April 2020

The History of Cannabis

Abigayle Miranda
The History of Cannabis

Cannabis is a popular drug mostly used for recreation, medical and spiritual purposes. It is cultivated and used all over the world, although in most parts it is considered illegal. Its history is adverse and dates way back before civilizations ever existed and was one of the first plants to be cultivated in history. There are a couple of theories about the existence, history and spread of cannabis up to the present times.

It was first cultivated around 30,000

According to scientific research, about 2 million, 3 hundred years ago in the Hindu Kush Mountain ranges, South-Central Asia Region was where the first plants of cannabis indigenously originated. Over thousands of years, cannabis spread to South-Eastern Asia favored by natural factors like wild animals migration, adverse weather changes, etc. Cannabis then grew wildly throughout the Indian sub-continent and Siberia at around 500 BC.

It was first cultivated around 30,000 years ago and initially, cannabis fiber was used to make ropes and sails, clothing, fabrics for making clothes, etc. Ancient cultures mostly grew cannabis not for recreation but for sacred spiritual purposes and for medicine. It was considered a holy plant and was highly valued also by the Ancient Greeks and Romans. During child-birth, it was used to make the pain bearable for the mother and was also burned during burials for instance by the Ancient Japanese.

Oldest recorded cannabis use is from

Ancient cultures used cannabis seeds as food and also extracted oil from them. There are many documented medical uses of cannabis by ancient cultures, for instance, Ancient Indians used it to treat leprosy and fever. Ancient Egyptians used it to treat inflammation and glaucoma. It was also used to treat general body pain, anxiety, earache by the Ancient Romans and was also believed to connect the user to the supreme being and to prolong life.

Oldest recorded cannabis use is from a Japanese spiritual tomb on Oki Islands at approximately 8000 BC. At around 4500 BC, cannabis was heavily acknowledged in Ancient Mainland China medically and spiritually. Due to its influence, it earned a place on the Yang-Zhao Culture. In 2727 BC, a Chinese emperor Shen-Nung, also known as the Father of Chinese Medicine wrote about cannabis referring to it as the staple crop of Asian culture.

The History of Cannabis

At around 3000 BC, cannabis was an important part of Ancient Korean Culture as well. Evidence of cannabis fiber was discovered in traditional clothes and they also used cannabis seeds for medical purposes. In 3500 BC, archaeological evidence of the burning of cannabis was found from the Romanian Kurgans. The fiber found in the cannabis plant helped during warfare as well, as it was used to make strong bow-strings which threw arrows further than those made from bamboo.

Ancient Indians recognized cannabis as a source of happiness and liberator which helped them to lose fear, have wisdom and be free of anxiety. Shiva, an Indian god, is described by legend as the Lord of Bhang. This is because he was the one who discovered cannabis which was called bhang by the Ancient Indians. He had a quarrel with his family and he decided to leave for a while. He got tired and decided to take a nap under a leafy tree when he woke up, he decided to eat the leaves of that tree and felt happy, calm and unanxious.

In the US, cannabis can be dated back during the settlement period in the 17th century. It was grown alongside other crops and was used to make fiber products like clothing. Also, it was used as a medicine and a law was passed requiring all farmers to grow cannabis. It was not until Mexican Immigrants introduced cannabis for recreational purposes that people started disapproving of it. Early 20th century, laws prohibiting cannabis started being passed and executed.

Cannabis has had an adverse and interesting history and evolution into different species from a long time ago before mankind got civilized. During ancient times, cannabis had many uses and benefits to people as seen above. Civilizations started interacting, slaves were being traded and as time passed, cannabis continued to spread all over the earth. In the Bible, cannabis is also mentioned in the old testament for instance in Psalms chapter 104 verse 14. It is evident that cannabis is a special plant that exists to help mankind in different ways.

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