Hemp Is a Radical – A Journey To Past

Hemp oil in two glass jars and sauceboat with grain in the bag, leaves and stalks of cannabis, a spoon with flour on the background of wooden boards

The history of cannabis and its usage by human dates back to at least the third millennium BC in written history, and possibly further back by the archaeological evidence.  For millennia plant has been valued for its use for fiber and rope, as food and medicine, and for its psychoactive properties used for religious and recreational uses.  The earliest restrictions on cannabis were reported in the Islamic world by 14th century. In the 19th century it began to be restricted in colonial countries, often associated with racial and class stresses. In the middle of the 20th century, international coordination led to sweeping restrictions on cannabis throughout most of the globe. Entering the 21st century, some nations begun to change their approaches to cannabis, with measures taken to decriminalize cannabis; the Netherlands became the first nation to legalize cannabis and in 2015 Uruguay became the first to legalize recreational cannabis with Canada following in 2018 and South Africa for personal use only.

ANCIENT USES:

Hemp is possibly one the earliest plants to be cultivated. Cannabis have been cultivated in Japan since the pre-Neolithic period for its fibers and as a food source and possibly as a psychoactive materials. An archaeological site in the OKI Islands near Japan contained cannabis achenes from about 8000 BC, probably signifying use of the plant. Hemp use archaeologically dates back to the Neolithic age in china, with hemp fiber imprints found yangshao culture pottery dating from the 5th millennium BC.  The Chinese later used hemp to make clothes, shoes, ropes, and an early form of paper.

Cannabis was an important crop in ancient korea, samples of hempen fabric discovered dating back as early as 3000 BCE.

Hemp is called ganja in Sanskrit and other modern indo Aryan language. Cannabis has an ancient history of ritual use and is found in pharmacological cults around the world.

LEGALIZING:

In 1972, the Dutch government divided drugs into more and less dangerous category. Accordingly possessions of 30gms or less was made a misdemeanor. Cannabis has been available for recreational use in coffee shops in 1976. Cannabis products are only sold openly in certain local “coffeeshops” and possession up to 5gms for personal use is decriminalized. Other type of sales and transportation are not permitted, although the general approach towards cannabis was lenient even before official decriminalization. Cannabis begun to attract renewed interest as medicine, in the 1970s and 1980s. in particular due to its use by cancer and AIDS patients who reported relief from the effects of chemotherapy and wasting syndrome. In 1996, California became the 1st U.S state to legalize medical cannabis in defiance of federal law. In 2001, Canada became the 1st  country to adopt a system regulating the medical use of cannabis. Subsequently a number of European and Latin American countries decriminalized cannabis such as, Belgium(2003), Chile(2005), Brazil(2006) and so on. In December 2013, the president of Uruguay legalize the cannabis in the modern era

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