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Is Cannabis Kosher

Updated: Aug 24, 2022


Cannabis in Israel is allowed for specified medical usage. Recreational use is illegal but essentially decriminalized for the user. Prosecution for home use and possession of 15 grams or less is not enforced by the authorities. According to Cannabis Magazine, despite the announcement on Monday, June 20, 2022 of the dissolution of the Knesset and the expected election in October 2022, a bill to legalize cannabis in Israel is expected to be approved by the Ministerial Committee on Legislation this coming Sunday.


Cannabis use is not new. While many faiths across the world use, or have used, psychotropic drugs to induce states of ecstasy, hallucinations or other effects, the practice by ancient Israelites in their religious rituals was a surprise. Most recently archaeologists were stunned to learn, by analyzing charred residues on a 2,700-year-old altar, that traces of the weed were in the temple at Tel Arad, in Israel’s Negev desert. The cannabinoid substance was likely burned to deliberately get worshippers high on the drug’s psychoactive compounds.

So, is Cannabis kosher? Hagai Bar Giora, an Israeli rabbi and member of the Kashrut Department, stated in an interview with Israel's Cannabis magazine that “if you smoke it, there is no problem whatsoever". Bar Giora noted that hempseed, being a legume, is not kosher for Passover for Ashkenazi Jews, but is for Sephardi Jews who permit eating legumes on Passover.

If you need to know when Cannabis usage becomes legal for recreational use, drop me a line at dov@glazers.net and I will gladly share what I know on the subject.


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