Ingesting Cannabis

Are there any issues a Torah observant Jew should be aware of with ingesting cannabis (assuming the local law permits it)? Does it make a difference if one’s purpose in doing so is for the sake of bringing his mind to a place where he believes he can serve Hashem and learn Torah better?

1 Like

This same question was asked of Reb Moshe years ago. He said no

1 Like

That was when it was illegal everywhere, it isn’t applicable today where many states and the District of Columbia have legalized it.

It is something that must be addressed within the current reality and not outdated opinions from 30 years ago.

Gay marriage is now legal in the United States. That does not make Gay marriage any less forbidden according to the Torah.

I take offense to this language. The Torah is timeless. The teachings of our Rabbi’s are timeless.

What you meant to ask was probably now that we have more information does the ruling of previous Rabbi’s still apply or have the circumstances changes and the Rabbis were not discussing this circumstance.

So here’s the thing, the reason why Rav Moshe prohibited cannabis was not because it was illegal. So that fact that today it become legal in many states doesn’t change the ruling of Rav Moshe.

And that was the meaning of my comparison to Gay marriage or other things forbidden by the Torah but now legal in America. Abortion would be the same. According to the Torah, abortion is prohibited and the fact that it’s legal in America doesn’t change that.

And to add to the original question, getting drunk to be able to serve Hashem better doesn’t make getting drunk permitted according to Halachah. Learn how to serve Hashem in your current state of mind and do not alter your mind with chemicals or alcohol. If you are compelled to alter your mind to be able to function please seek professional help. And I say that from the bottom of my heart.

1 Like

Apples to oranges comparison, no Poskim who permit medical cannabis say that it is at all the same.

Do you see any mention of medical cannabis in the original question? I don’t.

with all due respect, perhaps the original question was asked at a time when the medicinal value of cannabis was less established.

i know of an individual who suffers from anxiety and has an extremely difficult personality when in a state of anxiousness. he obtained a prescription for cannabis, and the transformation in him is astounding. it seems as though you are implying that medicinal cannabis would be forbidden, or that cannabis which is recreationally legal would be forbidden as a relaxant even though alcohol is permitted. can you please clarify both questions? (if prescription cannabis is forbidden, and if/why legal cannabis would be forbidden when alcohol is not)?

Again, have you seen any mention of medical cannabis in the original question or our responses. I don’t.

Medical situations may be different and it needs to be discussed in a case by case situation.

Rabbi, I apologize if what I said offended you but I stand by my point.

Also, I am sober and do not use Cannabis. I am simply addressing the issue of legality and not personal preference.

Also, the petition to seek help is incredibly condescending. Again, I am not a drug user and simply think the issue needs to be reassessed in today’s context.

Rabbinic teshuvot are not always evergreen.

1 Like

Ok I was not accusing anyone of being a drug dealer or even a drug abuser. I am merely responding to the question asked. The question asked was very clear. They want to chemically alter their mind in the name of serving Hashem better. Anyone who feels the need to chemically alter their mind to live normally should absolutely seek professional help, whatever that maybe. That is not condescending at all. It’s what need to be done if one wants to live a happy and healthy life. People go through extremely difficult situations in their life and people struggle with many challenges where they feel like they don’t have the tools to cope with everything. Seeking help is the absolute best think one can do in this situation. Turning to medicator like alcohol or cannabis is not healthy at all. There is no argument here.

Please read the questions asked and tell me how my response was inappropriate.

Now back to your point, we agree that as situations in the world and circumstances change the application of the Halachah many change as well. That is why in every generation Rabbis have written thousands of volumes of seforim on topics that earlier Rabbi’s already wrote about. Circumstances change and therefore the halachic application may change as well.

This conversation went off track really quickly because there has been confusion between the different forms and applications of cannabis in society today.

So to clarify this topic for everyone why don’t we compile an comprehensive list of the forms of cannabis and their uses and their effect on peoples ability to function one way or another. Then I can review all the details with the Rav again and get you clear answers so we can put this topic to rest.

Anyone willing to help compile this information?

I can do so, I’ll look at: 1) Different forms of cannabis and products; and 2) applications.

1 Like