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Cannabis is a comedic mystery, but only as long as it's a forbidden fruit

14 2 0
14.09.2019

“Being intolerant of intolerances
And allergic to allergies
He spent his time entangling himself
In reflexive infinities.

A skeptic of skepticism
Negating double negatives
He hoped in the depth of consciousness
That infinity forgives”
From Khadi Boli to Hyperbole by Bachchoo

Mumbai, where I am for a few weeks, has been declared by statistical institutes as the city which consumes the sixth most tonnage of “pot” — cannabis sativa.

I am disappointed, feeling what cricket fans would if their team came sixth in the World Cup. I console myself by contending that the abstainers of the vast population of this, my metropolitan island, can’t be counted as “my team”.

Cannabis takes three known forms. There is the crushed fresh leaf, known as bhang, and in my childhood indulgences in Pune, among the rude culture of the streets, as “banta”. When the leaves are dried and smoked, they are known as ganja or grass, and when the resin is extracted in liquid form and solidified, much as the juice of sugarcane turns into jaggery (goodd), it’s sold as “pot”.

Human ingenuity has dealt with this gift of the gods — notably Shiva, to whom we wish victory after we pull on a chillum full of ganja by pronouncing “Jai Shambho” — in very many forms and recipes. At Holi, Indians of all religions and ranks including, I expect, top politicians and Cabinet members, ignore the law of the land which bans the drug and........

© The Asian Age