Cannabis grows all around the globe, mostly on areas with mild to moderate climates. It is an upright, longitudinal, one-year plant that can grow up to several meters high in just six months, providing it grows in suitable circumstances. Its longitudinal, sharp edged leaves, numbering 3 to 11 per branch, do remind us of wild chestnut leaves, yet it belongs to a family of its own, the cannabaceae. During its growth, male and female plants begin to show their key characteristics, the latter growing more into its width than the former. It is the buds on the female plants that extrude a sticky substance we tend to extract for personal use, since it is richly potent with cannabinoids – CBG (cannabigerol), CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) to name only a few. The latter cannabinoid is present at much lower levels in industrial hemp grown for its other properties (under 1%, 10 times lower from the average cannabis plant).


With the help of certain procedures, long, prone and strong fibers can be extracted from the plant. They have always been used to produce ropes, sponges, canvases and fabric. Its seeds can be used for extracting cannabis oil, found in many cleaning substances and is mostly being used for creating certain kinds of paint and as food for birds. Cannabis could replace most products generated from wood, oil and cotton and is already used in the production of paper, fuel, food, medicine and building materials. Since it is one of the prime renewable sources, growing rapidly, its use in the production of paper generates four times the income created from classic paper made from wood, without the deforestation – trees, growing for centuries can be replaced by cannabis plants growing meters tall in just one hundred days. Cannabis paper is also more durable and uses less effort to produce, comparing to standard everyday paper.


Sources tell us of Cannabis’ use in China in the 3rd millennium B.C.E., yet its arrival to the Mediterranean seems to be in the early years of Christianity. Its early use ought not surprise us, since Cannabis must have provided important Omega-3 ‘fatty acids’ even to the ‘protohuman’, which might have also used it to broaden its spiritual horizons. In the early Christian days, cannabis was used for baptisms and anointments, but we mustn’t look that far back to recall its frequent use in everyday life. Its products were a part of every medic’s equipment throughout the entire 19th century, due to it being prescribed for easing pain during labor, menstrual spasms, arthritis and nervous system disfunctions and for treating insomnia (even with babies) and asthma, as was written in many contemporary articles. Unfortunately, the times of everyday use of cannabis have come to a bitter end with the beginning of the 20th century. It was being replaced with modern, chemically developed medicine, generating an industry that stands no competition. Thus, cannabis was criminalized in the USA, despite disagreements coming from some of the states’ key medicinal institutions.

Due to the ban on alcohol being lifted, the bureaucratic pressure of the prohibition became focused on cannabis, mostly at the fault of Harry Anslinger, member of many governments from the times of Roosevelt on. His campaign against cannabis was mostly based on his personal prejudice and his insufficient understanding of the contemporary black community. The consequences of his conservative actions were felt even in the 90es; it was in 1996 when medicinal cannabis was legalized in the state of California, marking the first big step towards the total decriminalization of cannabis we are witnessing in certain states the last few years. Many theories on its negative effects on the lungs and mental health were scientifically dismissed recently. There were also many studies, dedicated to observing cannabis’ psychoactive component, THC, all of them proving the same thing – one cannot overdose with cannabis.

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