Tag Archives: Marijuana

Many Faces Many Names (Official Music Video)

Backstory: We wrote and released this song over 11 years ago.. it became and continues to be one of our fans and friends favorites. Recently, B-Still and I were together in Bloomington, Indiana where we met and originally wrote and recorded the song.. and decided to shoot a video for our underground classic. We selected several spiritual destinations in “Btown” and Gabriel Lantz shot the footage. Yamily Creative Company edited the video and Chip Reardin, the original producer of the song, Re-Mastered the track as well. Enjoy! Namaste!


I am the One with Many Faces & Many Many Names,

God & Goddess in the hearts that flame,

The rain, the sun, the stars and the moon,

The earth and universe, the song and the tune.

(Verse 1 – Sakshi Zion)

I Am That I Am, the light, shining bright tonight

Like the fire of Yahweh before Moses at Sinai

The burning bush, Ganja, Holy Marijuana

There’s a natural mystic blowing thru the air, Oh Jah

Heartbeats of freedom, Buddha, Bodhisattva Zen,

I’mma climbin Jacob’s ladder to the highest heaven,

to the palace within, I sip the chalice again,

on my flyin carpet Iyah soar Himalayan Mountains

(Chorus)

(Verse 2 – B-Still)

They call me Buddha when they know that money isn’t true worth,

they call me the Great Spirit when they can feel me from the earth,

they call me Apollo when they follow me to the west,

call me Jesus in the Middle East, that’s where you know me best,

call me the effect of drugs, when they only feel me shroomin,

call me their soulmate when they see me in a human,

call me the Self of all things when you see things clearly..

It don’t matter what you call me, as long as you can hear me.

(Verse 3 – Sakshi Zion)

I am the one in Kailash, where I smoke ganja

With my coiled dreadlocks dat dem call Jata

They call me Shiva, in Meditation,

I have been that I Am from Creation,

to the zenith of the One, all my relations,

Aho Mitakyasin to all the nations

They call me Krishna Kokopeli with the magic flute

The Kabbalic Tree of Life, with everlasting fruits

They call me Bacchus, Dionysus, got the wine of bliss,

intoxicated circle dance with the flower goddesses,

they call me Isis, Mother Mary, the Magdalene,

the Queen, Triple Goddess, Gaia Earth so Green,

they call me Allah, the Great and Powerful Source,

Kundalini Shakti coiling serpent force,

they call me Rastafari, the King of Kings

Bhakti Yoga is the path, see me dance and sing ahhh

(Chorus & instrumental solo)

(Verse 4 – B-Still)

If I came as a blind man, would you hold my hand?

If I came as animal, would you protect my land?

If I came as the tree, would you cut me down?

And if I came as the rain, would you thank me now?

I come in Rainbows, not jus one single color

So when I come in another race, will you still see me as your brother?

If I said it was you, would you stop searching for me?

I’m what you close your eyes and feel, not what you think you see

They call me 99 names cause you can only describe me,

said I had 1000 yes, Infinity you’ll find me,

call me Keeli-Ana-Kulu-Kulu if you a Zulu

Under the Bodhi tree, like the Buddha I school you

(Verse 5 – Sakshi Zion)

I Am the Omkar, The Primordial Sound

Look Around, I Surround, You’re on Holy Ground

They call me Shanti, Shalom, Pax & Peace

Zion Temple of Love, I Am the High Priest

Emmanuel, Melchizedek, Avilokateshwar

Medicine Buddha and the Green Tara

I Am the whisper of the wind and the ocean’s wave

Jah Redemption call, knowledge of Self that saves

Yeshua Kristos, Haile Selassie I

I Am the Way, the Truth, the Life.

Baraka Kirtan – The Art of Spirituality

Baraka Kirtan – The Art of Spirituality (revised)

by Antonya Wallace (Anth-E200) 12/7/2010

Introduction: Baraka: a blessing, the essence of life, soul power. It’s a Thursday night, and while most people are headed out to the bars, I’m making my way across town to Sakshi’s house to sit in during a Baraka Kirtan performance. Kirtan is an ancient Indian tradition based on Bhakti Yoga, which uses music and chanting as an avenue to spiritual enlightenment. As I enter the house the smell of roasting vegetables, marijuana, and halava fills my nose. I later learned that food is almost always present and sanctified so that it can be offered to God. They believe that when one eats sanctified food, that the food purifies the soul. Since Kirtan has roots in India there isn’t any beef (or any meat for that matter) being served, due to their animals sacred role in India. Yet, not all Kirtankars (one who practices/performs Kirtan) are vegetarian. It just happened that everyone in attendance tonight was. Another thing that everyone shares is the use of marijuana, which is smiled upon, as it is believed to promote enlightenment, drive the music, and as an added benefit, make the food taste even more divine. Smoking was also used socially to bring everyone together to prepare for the beginning of the ceremony. I was only there to observe so I did not enhance my chances of enlightenment.

I thought it was important to note that as I entered the room; warm faces, hugs, and a plate of food greeted me. That hospitality was due in part because Sakshi used to be my neighbor and he was the first person I met when I moved to Bloomington. But the royal treatment wasn’t reserved just for ex-neighbors. As I sat watching I noticed that the Kirtan community is open and loving to everyone. As each person entered Sakshi’s house they were greeted by first name, a hug, food, and an offer to play music. I decided that I would not participate in the event so that I could have an etic point of view. I pulled up a chair slightly to the side of the group and began my observations. The heavy smell of incense being burned drowned out the colorful smells of food and ganja.

I really enjoyed the scent of the incense so after the event I asked what it was. To my astonishment it was part of another practice that I was completely oblivious to. “Agnihotra is a Vedic yajna and involves the burning of cow dung and ghee butter in an inverted copper pyramid at dusk and dawn precisely, while chanting Vedic mantras. Properly performed, this ritual according to the Vedic tradition brings about enormous healing and purification of the environment. The Agnihotra is a powerful yajna that in my experience brings about a deep sense of peace. This 5-minute process feels like coming out of an hour of meditation. It’s a grounding practices and assists in uncovering the real Self, hidden underneath all of the mental chatter. The fact that the dung of the cow is such an important part of this process is really significant given the way this culture brutalizes and tortures these sacred creatures” (ecovillage.wordpress.com). It seems that this practice speaks to the Kirtan community’s “love-all” mentality.

I learned that it was a good practice to do the Agnihotra before the real ceremony began, so that everything is cleansed. I learned, “The rites of the Morning-Agnihotra are almost the same as the rites of the Evening-Agnithotra; but, in many instances, the formulas uttered by the Adhvaryu or the Sacrificer are different” (Paul-Emile Dumont). I was only there for the evening Agnihotra so I cannot compare the differences with the morning ritual.

As the musicians began to take their seats, they ditched their shoes and sat in a semi-circle. The audience comprised the other half of the circle, therefore creating an atmosphere for the call and response style of the music. The simple act of sitting on the ground in a circle is an example of universal primitive behavior. Speaking generally, almost all ancient human groups have sat communally in circles during gatherings. Circular shaped atmospheres bring the listeners directly into the experience. They stop being just listeners, and become participants. The circle encourages each person to look into another’s eyes as they are beckoned to respond to the singer’s calls.

Each “Baba” grabbed their respective instrument; Sakshi Gopal Das on the harmonium, Arun Baba on the bansuri (a type of wooden flute), Zen-G on the guitar, and Ras D Hanubaba on percussion instruments, including the tabla, mridanga, djembe, and kartals. Kirtan events can be played in any musical style with any instrumentation. Baraka Kirtan chooses to stick with more traditional instrumentation on most nights. They also perform many different styles on their CD. Some of those styles include non-traditional instruments such as, electric guitars, bass, drums sets, and digital voice alterations. The style that they choose for each performance is generally based off of their mood that day.

The music begins and the first song (always) is Hare Krishna. Hare is the feminine energy of God, and Krishna means “all attractive one”. During the opening song, “a simple melody is repeated many times at continuously faster tempos and greater volumes until a climax is reached, at which point the whole process may begin again with either the same or a new melody…commonly a line of melody was first sung responsorily four times – leader, chorus, leader, chorus – before proceeding to the next line of the melody… [then] the whole procedure would start over…but at an increased tempo” (Slawek 80). Tonight’s leader, Sakshi sang,

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna

Krishna Krishna Hare Hare

Hare Rama Hare Rama

Rama Rama Hare Hare

The, the audience, some with eyes closed, some staring, some praying, would all participate on during the response. Everyone was completely indulged in their own self-awareness and spiritual being. The sound of all the voices in unison had a surprisingly rich tone. It was nice to be at a ceremony where everyone felt the freedom of creativity and experimented with harmonies, and adding their own flares to each response. The allowance of creativity offers everyone a unique personal experience for his or her spirituality. In some instances if the audience is really enjoying the performance, “The chorus of talkaris (kirtan) often interrupts the kirtankar’s sermon with the singing of a topically relevant abhanga and may take over the performance of a song that a kirtankar has begun. In fact, a warkari kirtankar can easily deliver an entire kirtan and only sing a few solo lines of the song” (Shultz 309). Since Indiana doesn’t have a very large Hare Krishna movement going on underground…Sakshi was more than welcome to solo until the cows (who weren’t eaten J) came home.

Main Argument: While I sat there watching everyone divulge all their energy into devotion through song, I found myself wondering why a genre of music that provides so much peace to people is not more mainstream. In fact, I can’t recall a time that I’ve ever heard Kirtan music on the radio, except when Sakshi would call me and tell me to tune it to Bloomington’s public radio station when Baraka Kirtan was playing.

Sakshi said that Kirtan is actually becoming a new genre in popular music, whereas before it was seated in the world music category. It seems that Kirtan’s growing popularity is due to its message of love, peace, and self-awareness; which can be contrasted by the mind numbingly idiotic music blaring on B97.7 day and day out.

I don’t want to come across as a racist person but I did notice that everyone in attendance (with the exception of me) was Caucasian, and none of us were from India. So my research question would have to be, How did an Indian tradition that’s not very well known, become a subculture in the United States? What makes this music more popular than other forms of world music?

Theory: Those who practice Kirtan disregard arbitrary attributes such as gender, race, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or religion. Kirtan is a catalyst to deeper spiritual awakening. People are instantly drawn to the ideology of togetherness that Kirtan offers. While most religions in our society offer a “Get Saved or Burn for Eternity” methodology, Kirtan’s job is to improve each person’s relationship with their own spiritual power.

Unlike most organized religions in the world, which ask you to abandon any other religious beliefs that may conflict with their doctrines, Kirtan lets you keep any, and all your beliefs. The point of Kirtan is to deepen your own spiritual awareness, in order to facilitate a deeper understanding of the spirit, self, and even other religions. It seems that since Kirtan offers such a contrast to more popular well-known religions like Christianity, Catholicism, Judaism, etc…that people are also attracted just to get a taste of something new. Kirtan differs from other world religions in that they have never gone on some “convert or die” crusade. Instead of seeking out new members, they let the members seek them out, and then welcome them into their community with open arms. This method of gaining followers actually appears to have gained more devoted participants because each person is expected to find their own path into the Kirtan realm. If you want to become a part of the Kirtan community you have to make an effort to do so, unlike getting saved at a Baptist church which could be likened to going through a “McSalvation” drive through. Literally, anyone could walk into a church at any time and get saved, as many times as they want…without any real impact on their spiritual receptiveness.

Kirtan offers a tailored experience to each person. The natural feel of Kirtan takes away the hierarchal feel of organized religion. For example, the musicians take off their shoes before they play, everyone sits on the floor together, and shares food. It seems that those actions level the playing field between audience and performer, devotee and sit in, old and young, etc. Other factors that attract people to Kirtan are their love of the environment and preservation of ancient practices.

In the days when going to church has become “the thing to do” and if you don’t then you’re damned, people miss out on a real and physical connection with their spirit. From what I’ve seen many people just go to church to maintain their reputation, or they go but don’t practice what is preached. Churches have become kind of like fast food chains, in that they cater to the masses instead of the individual. The strength of major world religions seems to lie solely in the number of followers as opposed to the devotional strength of said followers. To see devoted followers, head over to a Kirtan event. Before going to the event I had no clue why it was growing, but now I understand that the personalized feel and unique musical styles is driving it to become a more prevalent part of our society (and most likely, many others).

Methodology: Being in such a laid back atmosphere, I thought it most appropriate to just jot down a few notes here and there, and casually start conversations. I began by asking Sakshi what Kirtan means to him. I used the genealogical method in a very loose sense so that I could get a grasp on which he learned from, since he was not born into the community. He actually mentioned that he thought it was a bit funny that here are four Caucasian men observing an Indian tradition, and really using it as a way of life. They have at times been misunderstood, but they simply just want to respect and enjoy the aspects of another culture.

I only observed during the event so as to remain neutral to my experience. We also met at Laughing Planet one day so that he could clarify the words of the songs for me. After talking to an insider, I thought I would interview someone who had no previous knowledge of Kirtan. I talked to Samy Estrada, who gave me her brief thoughts on the atmosphere and preaching of Kirtan. Since she was unable to actually attend the event with me, I asked her to watch one of Baraka Kirtan’s online performances. Since she is also a dancer I asked her to describe the music. She said, “the instrumentation was really unique, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I thought that it might be kind of lame because it was just acoustic instruments; but toward the end when they picked up the tempo it really got funky! They have a really cool message too” (Estrada)!

The rest of my research was done on www.BarakaVision.com, the band’s official website. I used this page to access the band member’s bios, mission statement, and preferred instruments. I also read a few articles on www.jstor.org so that I could read about Kirtan from an Ethnomusicologist’s and Ethnographer’s point of view. These pages gave me insight into more of the cultural implications and history than I could have gained in personal interviews. I couldn’t find much information about Agnihotra so I used www.google.com which led me to a brief review on ecovillage.wordpress.com about the book “How to Save the World”, by Peter Proctor, a biodynamic farmer.

Data Analysis: First, I needed to satisfy my curiosity about how Sakshi even got involved with the Hare Krishna movement. He said, “I was attracted to it years ago due to its instrumentation; especially the sound of the harmonium (which looks like a Dr. Seuss instrument), the message, and the ancient prayers which made me feel in tune with my ancestors” (Sakshi). I accessed his biography on his webpage for more insight on his background. “he lived and studied with many Elders and Mystics (including Ras Pidow, Dr. James E Mumford, Srila Turiya Das Mahasaya and more). Lived and studied at several Ashrams, Temples, and Binghi Camps across North America, Jamaica, Hawaii, and India. In the summers of 2002 and 2003 he traveled across N. America with a traveling cultural festival called “The Festival of India” in which he was a main contributor of set-up and break-down, cultural plays, food distribution, chariot-parading, and sacred chanting. He has been in several musical projects, including: Baraka Kirtan, Santos and the Saints, The Nyahbinghi Livity Choir, Indiana University African American Choral Ensemble, Kuru Dynasty, La Onda, Roots Groundation Family, Parrhesia and more” (BarakaVision.com). I thought that his eclectic musical diversity alone spoke to his openness to new cultures and creativity. If we use Sakshi as an example of the average practitioner of Kirtan, we can see how interesting and appealing the community is. As a side note, he also told me that he does not adhere to any organized religion. But he also does not judge or discriminate anyone based on his or her personal religious choices. His opinion is that people have their own path to embark on to find spiritual peace.

What Sakshi and the Kirtan movement do not do is tell people that they need to submit to their code or way of life. Their message is one of understanding and compassion. In Kirtan, God appears in many forms and usually his/her appearance is different to each person, because God can have an infinite amount of forms. In Kirtan, God can manifest as any deity such as, Krishna, Ram, Shiva, Ganesha, Kali, and many more. These deities share similarities with, and are usually connected to Catholic Saints. To communicate with the deities, they use music, which can be in any genre, just like God can appear in any shape. The musical style creates an openness, connectedness, and receptiveness, among each person’s spirit as they sit in the circle. Just like the participants, each song as a different flavor and mood. To connect with the gods they try to achieve spiritual awakening. Though the Kirtan spiritual awakening may be called different things, spirit of devotion, divine connection, right brained experience, or spiritual openness, these things seem to be held as a common intention to the band members.

Another common intention among the band members is to maintain old practices, like call and response. Samy’s reaction to the call and response aspect of the event was that it was reminiscent of tribal chanting (the band’s desired affect). She also thought the music was calming and soft, until the tempo picked up and it got intense. But this particular event that she saw was calmer than others because it did not use any electric instruments, which are more stimulating to the listener than acoustic ones. She also noticed that each person seemed to be in their own world, yet at the same time connected to everyone in the room. It was almost like Sakshi’s calls put everyone in to a trance, and they could only come out of it by singing the response.

I found that their website was extremely useful for bios and band info. I chose to focus primarily on Sakshi because he is my closest friend out of all the band members. But I did make sure to look at everyone else’s bio and they proved to each have completely different yet extraordinarily interesting backgrounds. It’s compelling to see that people from such different roads can all meet in the middle and work toward a common goal of harmony. Some of the ways that the band members spread peace when they’re not performing is Story Time Yoga, a group started by Sakshi, which incorporates yoga into fairy tales. Ras D likes to change the environment by teaching sustainable farming to Bloomington’s Community. With Kirtan the sky is the limit on creatively spreading the word of peace, harmony, and love.

Conclusion: Unlike other world religions Kirtan offers more than just a guide for living which can be summed up by the golden rule. The Hare Krishna movement brings entire communities of varied people together to function as one spritual entity. Kirtan allows each person to find their own path and use Kirtan as a means to help them spread love and harmony in whatever way they choose. For example, Sakshi’s yoga, and Ras D’s farming; they are each doing what they love to do, while weaving in Kirtan to spread a message.

The beauty of Kirtan is that while it is a deeply personal experience it is also very communal. The participation of the person sitting next to you, chanting, and playing music will directly affect your experience, and vice versa. The “primitiveness” of it makes the participants feel as though they have just relived something that their ancestors probably did long ago. As the tempo speeds up, so does the heart beato f all those involved. The music literally seems to pull your body toward the instruments. Everyone in the room seems to into a spiritual trance, as they slowly forget all the hardships in life outside the Kirtan room. When I was there, I wasn’t even participating but I found that instead of thinking about my bills, homework, exams, or life drama, I was just focused on the rhythm of the drums pulsating through my body. It was as if my brain turned off, and I didn’t have a choice, it was time to meditate.

Kirtan offers an authentic feeling of togethness that people usually do not get from day to day living. After the event eveyone kind of looks around smiling, like “now what?”. In such a short time they ate, smoked, chanted, blessed, meditated, and laughed together. I can truly say that I understand now why Kirtan is becoming so popular. It is a message that can virtually be played with any instruments, in and setting, and any time. Most importantly I found out that it can be played by anyone of any color or creed, etc…as long as they embody the message of love.

Since Kirtan is so musically amorphous it appeals to a broad audience of musical tastes and can easily become a tool for social change. “[It] is an especially effective meduim for the propegation of nationalist ideas because of its devotionalized context and Kirtan music’s potential for group participation, experiences of emboiment, and multiple interpretive possibilites” (Shultz 307).

After doing this Project I think that I have learned that Kirtan has the potential to create strong and loving leaders, who don’t adhere to social convictions of discrimination. In Kirtan you can come from any background because the importance rests in the spiritual world instead of the physical. Hopefully the Hare Kirshna movement will continue to spread, and add much needed harmony to the crazy world we’re all living in.

Works Cited :

Hindu Nationalism, Music, and Embodiment in Marathi Rāshṭrīya Kīrtan

Anna Schultz

Ethnomusicology

Vol. 46, No. 2 (Spring – Summer, 2002), pp. 307-322

Published by: University of Illinois Press on behalf of Society for Ethnomusicology

Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/852784

Moi. “Cow Dung and It’s Many Wonderful Properties « EARTHKEEPIN.” EARTHKEEPIN. 27 Sept. 2007. Web. 02 Dec. 2010. <http://ecovillagelife.wordpress.com/2007/09/27/cow-dung-and-its-many-wonderful-properties/>.

The Agnihotra (Or Fire-God Oblation) in the Taittirīya-Brāhmaṇa: The First Prapāṭhaka of the Second Kāṇḍa of the Taittirīya-Brāhmaṇa with Translation

Paul-Emile Dumont

Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society

Vol. 108, No. 4 (Aug. 27, 1964), pp. 337-353

Published by: American Philosophical Society

Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/985912

Popular Kīrtan in Benares: Some ‘Great’ Aspects of a Little Tradition

Stephen M. Slawek

Ethnomusicology

Vol. 32, No. 2 (Spring – Summer, 1988), pp. 77-92

Published by: University of Illinois Press on behalf of Society for Ethnomusicology

Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/852037

Wind, Arun B., Sakshi G. Das, Ras D. Hanubaba, and Zen G. “Divine Music”. Baraka Kirtan – Divine Music. DigitalNature, 1 Jan. 2010. Web. 04 Nov. 2010.

Ganja Mantras & Cannabis History in Religion

In India, Shiva is invoked before taking the first puff of Ganja by shouting one of many chilam-mantras :

Alakh! Bam Bam Bholanath! Bom Shiva!

Hara Hara Mahadev Shambo! Hara Hara Ganja!

In India, a significant section of Shaivite Tantrics and Devotees of Shiva ritually partake of marijuana as part of their sadhana (spiritual exercise).

“With the first drag, Shiva (a Hindu deity) made the sky. With the second, he made the earth and with the third he made this world.”

This, according to Dr Molly Kaushal, research officer at the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts in New Delhi, is how the Gaddi tribals of the northern Indian hill state of Himachal Pradesh describe the act of Creation. The ‘drag’ here, of course, refers to a puff of cannabis.

As she tells me this, an excited Madhusudan Baul, a folk singer from the eastern Indian state of West Bengal, chips in: “These three puffs are extremely important. There is a proper ritual involved in taking them. There should be a gap of at least 90 seconds between each puff. And the high that you reach after three puffs is the climax. No further smoking will make any difference.”

And what does he feel when he is on such a high? Madhusudan closes his eyes in bliss as he recalls: “We all know that God resides everywhere. But we see Him in bits and pieces. Cannabis makes me see God in His entirety. It is a sight of such unalloyed joy that tears well up in my eyes.”

Neem Karoli Baba forwarded a similar view when he was asked by one of his disciples whether taking hashish helps spiritual development. “You should smoke hashish like Lord Shiva,” he said, “only to be with God. But smoking hashish is not necessary to reach God. The effect only lasts a short while. Devotion to God is an addiction that lasts all the time.”

Excerpt from Sadhus: India’s Mystic Holy Men, by Dolf Hartsuiker Inner Traditions, Int’l. (1993), p. 97-98 :

A common ritual [for devotees of the God Shiva] is the smoking of a mixture of tobacco and charas (hashish) in a chillam (pipe). Although this undoubtedly serves the more earthly purpose of socializing with Sadhu-brothers and devotees, the smoking of charas is nonetheless regarded as a sacred act. Intoxication as a ‘respected’ — amongst Babas anyway — method for self-realization is related to the drinking of soma, the nectar of the gods, which is recommended in the Vedas as a sure means of attaining divine wisdom.

Mythologically charas is intimately connected with Shiva: he smokes it, he is perpetually intoxicated by it, he is the Lord of Charas. He is invoked before taking the first puff by shouting one of many chilam-mantras: Alakh! Bam Bam Bholanath! Bom Shiva!

Babas offer the smoke to him; they want to take part in his ecstasy, his higher vision of Reality. As a final gesture of devotion, a Sadhu may mark his forehead with the chilam-ashes, or even eat them, as prasad from Shiva. Charas may be used by Shaivas (Shiva worshipers) and Vaishnavas (Vishnu worshipers).

Lord Balarama & Ganja
Worshipers of Shiva traditionally offer their ganja to Shiva before smoking, but what about followers of Krishna? Krishna generally does not accept ganja offerings, although He clearly states that He is the healing essence of all herbs. In ancient India, the temple incense was infused with hashish so worshipers could inhale the sacred smoke and experience love of God. Although hash incense is no longer available, Krishna worshipers offer ganja smoke to Krishna’s brother, Balarama, and receive the Lord’s blessings. Mantra for offering ganja to Balarama: Baladev Baladev Hara Hara Ganja.

She brought out a heavy auburn cone of clay which had an inner rod that fit snugly inside the hollow cone. She ripped a tattered fragment off of her orange sarong and tied it around the thinner end of the cone, brought out a small cup made from an immature ash-blackened coconut in which she crumbled up a 1:2 mix of charas and rare ganja which she tightly packed into the wide end of the chillum.

Om Shiva Shankara Hara Hara Ganga!

Ditto. I mimicked her mantra and we began. “I got this pipe from a baba who resides in the Shiva Temple at Hampi.”

My first goal was to find the Baba who taught Eleanor the art of chillum smoking. Before we slept she gave me the full story of the Baba, how he dosed her whole body with blue ash, dabbled salt on her eye lids, blew incense on meridian points of her body and quivered with joy when she told him that she was to pack a chillum of only cannabis as opposed to partitioning it with tobacco. “It will please Shiva most!” she said.

The Sumerians of the Ancient Near East each developed their own`personal deity’ whom they would worship each day by burning cannabis. The Sumerians believed that the daily worship of their personal deity assisted them in earning a living and being courageous in battle. Creighton asserts that over the years the Hebrew words `yagarah hadebash’ have been translated incorrectly into `honey comb.’ He says that, “The earlier [translations], however obscure, show that the`honey’ was of a peculiar kind” and that the Syrian version of the text is actually a better account. The Syrian account says that Jonathan dipped his rod in a field of flower-stalks with resinous exudation, which would be produced in times of heat similar to the behavior of cannabis resin.

The word `kaneh bosm’ appears several times in the Old Testament “both as incense, which was an integral part of religious celebration, and as an intoxicant,” but a specific example sees Moses using it in Exodus 30:23 when God commanded him to make “holy anointing oil of myrrh, sweet cinnamon, kaneh bosm, and kassia.” Benet explains that in this passage the Hebrew definition of kaneh bosm is `aromatic reed,’ kan meaning `reed’ or `hemp,’ while bosm means `aromatic.’ The linguistic resemblance of the word `kaneh bosm’ to the Scythian word cannabis, and the Hebrew definition of kaneh bosm provide Benet and Bentowa with enough evidence to assert that the intoxicating properties of cannabis were probably first used by the peoples of the Near East and then spread through contact with the Scythians.

Today, there are groups such as The Ethiopian Zion Coptic Church who fully believe in the teachings of the Bible and that “marijuana is a godly creation from the beginning of the world. Its purpose in creation is as a fiery sacrifice to be offered to our Redeemer during obligations. Ganja (cannabis) is the sacramental right of every man worldwide.” As further confirmation of this belief, they point to the Encyclopedia Brittanica’s section on Pharmacological Cults, which states: “the ceremonial use of incense in contemporary ritual is most likely a relic of the time when the psychoactive properties of incense brought the ancient worshipper into touch with supernatural forces.”

An Indian god named Siva is described as The Lord of `Bhang,’ the drink made of cannabis leaves, milk, sugar and spices. Historically and continuing today, “bhang is to India what alcohol is to the West.” Orthodox Hindu rules have traditionally prohibited the use of alcohol except for the warrior Rajput caste who, despite the rules, indulge in alcohol. For Members of the Brahmin caste, cannabis was unequivocally sanctioned for social use in order to help achieve the contemplative spiritual life they strive to lead. According to one historian of cannabis, even in the 1940’s bhang was integral to social activities including special festivities and in the home.

In special festivities such as weddings, it was said that a father must bring bhang to the ceremonies to prevent evil spirits from hanging over the bride and groom. Bhang was also a symbol of hospitality. “A host would offer a cup of bhang to a guest as casually as we would offer someone in our home a glass of beer. A host who failed to make such a gesture was despised as being miserly and misanthropic.”

Cannabis is also renowned in India for its use in the Tantric religious yoga sex acts. About an hour before carrying out the yoga ritual, the devotee would put a bowl of bhang before him and after reciting a mantra to the goddess Kali, the devotee would drink the bhang potion. “The goal of the Tantra initiate was to achieve unity of mind, body, and spirit through yoga and marathon sexual episodes. This was fueled by bhang, which heightens the experience.”

The most potent Indian preparation of cannabis called `charas’ has the same religious importance to many Hindus that wine has to Christians celebrating the Eucharist. The Hindu mystics who smoked charas in the prayer ceremony called Puja especially favored charas. As well, the holy men called `fakirs’ who were famous for walking on hot coals and sleeping on beds of nails, believed that charas put them in closer communion with their gods.

Among the main deities worshiped in India is Shiva, god of destruction. He is said to have been a shaman who lived before 1000 b.c.e. and brought cannabis down from a mountain. A popular form of worshipping Shiva is to smoke charas in a chillum, a straight pipe smoked through the hands (to prevent contagion). The chillum is first touched to the forehead with the mantra, “Boom Shiva”.

Within a few hundred years, the Hindu reformer, Buddha, is alleged to have lived for six years on nothing but cannabis before attaining illumination. Many Buddhists venerate the plant and have ceremonial uses for it. Cannabis use spread to Japan as well and was used as a blessing in Shinto marriage ceremonies and to drive away evil spirits.

Before this time, cannabis use spread to the Middle East. At around 550 b.c.e., the Zend-Avesta — the holy book of the Zoroastrian faiths — listed hemp first among its 10,000 medicinal plants. There is also evidence of earlier use by the Hebrew priestcraft. In 1936, an etymologist named Sula Bennet found that the Hebrew word “kaneh-bosm” really means cannabis and had been mistranslated in the past.
According to his theory, the word appears throughout the Bible, for example,in Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. According to him, there are references to cannabis as both an incense used in religious ceremonies as well as an intoxicant.

By 800 e.v., when Mohammed established his religion, cannabis use was still allowed, though other intoxicants were forbidden. The lack of religious and social restraints led to cannabis being produced for a number of products (like paper, medicine and rope). As well, hashish (called Khaneh) was being widely produced and used by Sufis and other Islamic holy men and women for religious experiences and communion with God. Hashish production is still high in many Islamic countries.

We know from the Roman historian Herodotus writing at about 450 b.c.e. that the Sythians used cannabis in their sacred rituals (such as the funeral rites). He stated that they placed the seeds (probably not separated from the buds) on hot coals under small tents and breathed in the smoke. They then “transported by the vapor, shout aloud”. There is also evidence from several grave sites that the Sythians smoked cannabis for pleasure.

The Sythians were nomadic tribes from central Asia that spread across Europe starting near 1000 b.c.e., which is about the earliest reference we can find for the drug cultivation of cannabis. The Greek Thracians were closely tied to the Sythians and are alleged to have used cannabis as well, mostly in connection with the ecstatic worship of Dionysus. The noted historian M. Eliade claimed that they maintained a shamanic ritual of divination involving placing dried herbs, including cannabis, on hot coals and breathing in the smoke. Their shaman or “those who walk in smoke” were called “Kapnobatai”.

Horseback riding first appeared on the Ukrainian Steppes of Central Asia at around 4000 b.c.e. and led to numerous nomadic groups spreading out into the world. Many of these brought cannabis with them. Around 1500 b.c.e., nomadic Aryan tribes moved into India and integrated with the existing culture. Cannabis quickly became popular there. It’s common to find three main preparations of cannabis in India: bhang, ganja, and charas. Bhang is a beverage made from the dried leaves and is often very mild. Ganja is the flowering tops of female plants (buds) and charas is a form of hashish made by rubbing off the resin.

There are numerous “Dagga” (cannabis) religions in Africa, and some tribes claim that it was brought by the sacred star Sirius. When Africans were enslaved in Jamaica they brought their sacramental use of cannabis with them and, combining it with Indian use and mythology, created the religion of Rastafari. Many Rastafarians smoke cannabis religiously and use it to help them communicate with “Jah” (god). In Egypt and Ethiopia, a Christian group arose, the Copts, that considered cannabis to be a sacred herb, incense, and oil. The Coptic Christians used references in the Old Testament to back up their claims.

I think it is pretty clear that cannabis is a very sacred plant and has been used as such amongst various ancient cultures through-out history! Free the Herb! Legalize It! Don’t Criticize It! And I Will Advertise It! Boom Shiva! Jah Rastafari!

Thanks for visiting my blog! I hope you got lots of VALUE from this post! Questions or Comments always welcome!! Thank you!


~Sakshi Zion

Ps. Get Access Now to my FREE Ebook! How I use the Law of Attraction to travel the world and live my dreams!!

Chalwa – Illuminati Congo – Official Video (Big Ganja Tune)

Blaze the Chalwa!!!

I LOVE THIS SONG & VIDEO! Illuminati Congo came so hard on this one! The video is so dope and the song is just bangin! This is how we do as Rastafari! We bless up the Chalice and Praise Jah! Much Raspect to Jahn Illuminati Congo for keepin tha Fiyah Blazing and Blessing us with great music!!

Be sure to check out my other posts about Illuminati Congo featuring his songs “Still got my Sinse” and “Sacred Smoking of Cannabis & the Tree of Life”

And also go to the Illuminati Congo website and buy his music!

If you enjoyed this post, please “Like and Share” for more!

I hope you got lots of VALUE from this post! If you have questions or comments, please share your comments below! Thanks for visiting my blog!

~Sakshi Zion

Ps. Get Access Now to my FREE Ebook! How I use Law of Attraction to Travel the World and Live my Dreams!

 

Sacred Smoking of Cannabis & The Tree of Life

I have to share this excellent video made by Jahn Illuminati Congo. He gives some of his perspectives on the origin and usage of Sacred Marijuana. I have always loved to study the parallels in different cultures and mystical traditions in their use of symbols, stories, and use of sacraments. Ganja has always been used in mystical tradition all over the ancient world. Jahn really breaks down and elaborates very clearly and concisely the similarities and mystical overstandings of the Sacred Ganja in its holy use for mankind. I know you will gain so much value from this informative video.

Sacred Smoking of Cannabis & The Tree of Life

Be sure to check out my other posts about Illuminati Congo featuring his songs “Still got my Sinse” and “Chalwa”

And also go to the Illuminati Congo website and buy his music!

If you enjoyed this post, please “Like and Share” for more!

I hope you got lots of VALUE from this post! If you have questions or comments, please share your comments below! Thanks for visiting my blog!

~Sakshi Zion

Ps. Get Access Now to my FREE Ebook! How I use Law of Attraction to Travel the World and Live my Dreams!

Illuminati Congo – Still Got My Sinse – Official Video

You must definitely watch this new music video by Illuminati Congo “Still got my Sinse”. Illuminati Congo is a friend of mine and “my personal favorite” underground artist! Me and him have done a couple tracks together on a Krishna Conscious hiphop project called Age of Gaura and also Mix of the Mystics

I enjoy this new song a lot because he raps about how his girlfriend left him, and how the ganja, the sinse, is there to comfort him, to help blanket the pain possibly or to just give a broader perspective. I connect to this song because I lost my woman too. She is my daughter’s mother and she broke my heart. And there have been plenty of times where I’ve used the holy herb to comfort my heart and help me see beyond my present pains and see a greater perspective on the situation. Ganja doesn’t solve the problem but it definitely can be used as a tool towards transformation. Besides all that, the song is just really fun and dope! lol

Marijuana and Hemp are so beneficial to the planet and human beings in countless ways, stay tuned for another post about that. Ganja truly is the Healing Herb, and by the way, this video is really well done and cool too! Illuminati Congo is lookin smooth in his hat, the girl in video is hot and the special effects are neat too! And also check out my other posts about Illuminati Congo’s other song “Chalawa” and his educational video about “Sacred Smoking of Cannabis & the Tree of Life”. So, until next time, Fiyah Blaze & Enjoy!

ILLUMINATI CONGO – STILL GOT MY SINSE (Big Ganja Tune!)

Be sure to check his website & support Illuminati Congo
If you enjoyed this post, Please “Like and Share” for more!

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I hope you got lots of VALUE from this post! If you have questions or comments, please share your comments below! Thanks for visiting my blog!

~Sakshi Zion

Ps. Get Access Now to my FREE Ebook! How I use Law of Attraction to Travel the World and Live my Dreams!

New Artist Spotlight: Naâman (Good Music!)

I just came across this new artist Naâman by recommendation of a friend, and I was pleasantly surprised! He has a Reggae Ragga style with a RnB flava and if you know me then you know that’s my kinda music!! Below I’ve posted two of his songs, “Smoke Tricks” and “House of Love”. I like them both! I first heard him through “House of Love”, but I think “Smoke Tricks” is my favorite so far. Check out these songs by Naâman and enjoy!

Naâman – Smoke Tricks (Fatbabs Prod.)

Naâman – House Of Love – Official Video

Thats some good new music, right?!

wunlife copy

I hope you got lots of VALUE from this post! If you have questions or comments, please share your comments below! Thanks for visiting my blog!

~Sakshi Zion

Ps. Get Access Now to my FREE Ebook! How I use Law of Attraction to Travel the World and Live my Dreams!