My response to Edward Forchion
“In 1998 at the NORML conference in DC I asked Hagar (sic) to help me with a Cannabis church and he and Keith Stroup laughed at me. ( Never did Hightimes cover this topic back then except to laugh.) Now he’s claiming this – he’s a minister.” Edward Forchion on Facebook
It’s sad how the cannabis movement is filled with factionalism and jealousies. It only takes is a smidgen of media coverage to bring out the worst in some. My project to explore cannabis in ritual and ceremony began in 1987 and I’ve been pursuing the path rigorously ever since. Obviously, Forchion never read my article “The Big Bhang,” or any of the excerpts from Cannabis Spirituality by Stephen Gaskin, a book I commissioned and edited. Or any of the groundbreaking articles by Chris Bennett I published while editing a national magazine.
A few months ago, I put out a call on social media for all cannabis ministries to gather in Colorado and form a federation. Forchion did not respond, so I can only surmise he’s not interested in meeting other like-minded individuals.
I’d like to clear up his misconceptions, however. There are no “ministers” in the Pot Illuminati as we consider ourselves equals and none have any special access to spirituality. We take turns wearing the big hat during ceremonies and pass the energy around as much as possible. We have no dogma nor rules beyond: “Don’t hurt anyone.”
I’m not seeking funds, nor trying to construct a personality cult, and if you read my free ebook The New Pot Enlightenment you’ll discover my concept is for people to band together and create their own democratic, non-dogmatic cannabis ministries. You can use some of my concepts or feel free to ignore them, but there is no need to bash me.
Religion is not something written in stone, but something constantly evolving, and we have had precious little evolution over the last 2,000 years to the point religion has become a secret monopoly ruled by oligarchies and fraudsters as a tax shelter and to help foment war for profit. In order to level the playing field, we need to create democratic forms of religion that reject dogma and pyramidal structures employing fear-based mind-control formulas.