MembersIs Cannabis Kosher?

Rabbis have for centuries been debating recreational drug use and biblical views on the topic

By David Lazarus | | Topics: Jewish Wisdom for the Everyday Man
Photo: Hadas Parush / Flash90

Part 3 in Jewish Wisdom for the Everyday Man: a “guide for the perplexed” through the modern maze of morality from ancient Jewish Sages.

Drug abuse may seem to be a modern problem for which our young people need answers, but you may be surprised to learn that the rabbis have been addressing this issue for centuries. 

It is written in the Talmud that if you look hard enough you can find anything in the Torah. In a Talmudic commentary on the Torah written about 1,700 years ago, Rabbi Chiya tells his son not to use drugs. The medieval Talmudist Rashbam gives two reasons for the rabbi’s concern: 

  1. If you take drugs you will become addicted; 
  2. You are wasting your money. 

The rabbis explain that addictions harm not only the user but also damage the person’s relationships, family, social group and business.

Based on Deut. 4:9,...

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