I have a very positive response to this book. I agree with other reviewers that the same information can be found elsewhere, however I do not recall another book that did such an excellent and concise job of organizing and presenting it coherently. There are, of course, some gaps in the history presented.
I do not agree with other reviewers that the author focuses on "marijuana" instead of "hemp:" as both are the same species biologically, the difference is a tedious legal/ political word-game. His presentation is supportive of a liberal policy toward marijuana use and legislation, but he also describes the many potential and poorlyrecognized uses of this valuable and versatile cultivated plant.
I am particularly interested in the idea that any product made from wood or non-renewable fossil oil could be made
from renewable and readily available hemp (Cannabis Sativa and/or C. Indica). further reading shows cannabis can be used to make plastics, paper, textiles, fuel oil, composite wood-substitute building materials, and even concrete. Its seeds yield a balanced protein for human and animal food as well as an edible oil for use in cooking, etc. Medical applications for its complex resins are only beginning to be explored.
I remain reserved about medical applications of hemp/ marijuana. Accepting marijuana products as a panacea may be faddish and premature, though certainly worth continuing research.
I am concerned about the potential cumulative effects of frequent or regular marijuana use. Marijuana is attractive as a "recreational drug" because it temporarily relieves stress and anxiety. While its chemicals are surprisingly non-toxic, they are psychoactive: there is no question that consumption man acutely impair performance of complex tasks, attention, and social judgment Marijuana chemicals are oil-based and slowly metabolized. Rregular consumption may result in absorbing marijuana chemicals ,more rapidly than they are eliminated. Consider the author's example of the wandering Hindu "holy man" who has continually consumed marijuana for years and whose behavior would meet modern medical criteria for psychosis.
Published in 1996, its information is somewhat dated and should not by considered currently definitive. I especially enjoyed our author's concluding parable about a hemp-based ecological utopian America in the year 2020.
In summary, I highly recommend this book to general readers and encourage them to continue considering and investigating the concerns it presents.
- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Inner Traditions Bear and Company; Original ed. edition (1 November 1995)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780892815418
- ISBN-13: 978-0892815418
- ASIN: 0892815418
- Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 1.8 x 25.4 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 599 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 88,930 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)