Why a Cannabis Ritual?
People engage in all kinds of different, personal rituals every day. Even the smallest rituals are paramount to how we function. If we didn’t practice a daily personal hygiene ritual, we’d probably offend others. Likewise, if we chose to ignore the ritual of waking up at a decent hour and getting dressed, we’d feel uncomfortable and exposed.
Recent research shows that rituals, in all their forms, may be more rational than they appear. Combine this with Cannabis (known for its stress-relieving and anti-anxiety effects) and you can enjoy the benefits of both as part of your wellness routine.
Setting Your Intentions
So let’s consider using cannabis as a ritual act. Allow the ritual act of consuming cannabis with intention help bring meaning to everyday life. In the moment it takes to reflect and re-centre yourself before meditating, or smoking a bowl, give yourself a positive intention. Let go of what no longer serves you on an exhale and on the next inhale, hold it and know that you’re bringing happiness to yourself.
The Vedic priests believed consuming bhang (a marijuana infused almond milk drink) without intent was foolish. If you enjoy enjoying the ‘wake and bake’ ritual, then set an intention that will resonate with you for the rest of the day. A quick simple one from A Course in Miracles is, “What will you have me do, what will you have me say and to whom?” Cannabis is known to allow you to see things from a different perspective, and this can set a positive and receptive tone for you to enjoy the rest of your day. At the end of the day, take time to let go and better understand any problems or emotions that you felt. Why not think about the intent of your action and manifest some good, while you’re loading up your evening bowl? For some, this is the only action or time to reflect.
Rituals help us stay grounded. A practice that is repeated over and over becomes easier as time passes and gives us normality. When everything seems to go wrong and off kilter, a ritual helps you pull back into yourself and become centred as you give your focus to one action and nothing else. There are plenty of times when I forget my practices and have to start over. I often have to refocus and remind myself that these seemingly silly rituals will bring me balance. Rituals take time, that’s the point, but during that time you’re able to reset and recenter. While they make take time to get used to and time out of our already busy lives, rituals bring us a brief moment of simplicity and allow a shift to occur within ourselves when needed.
Sativa or Indica?
There are many cannabis strains you can use in your ritual. In small doses, indicas won’t be overwhelmingly sleepy. Indicas are best for night reflections and for those who suffer from high levels of anxiety. Sativas are more for creative or outdoor activities during the day but be warned that some strains can be overly energetic and racy. Hybrids are a perfect combination, some leaning more sativa or indica heavy, so ask your budtender what they’d recommend for you specifically. I enjoy high CBD strains because they elevate pain but for some it makes them tired. Everyone is different, ask questions and research what consumption methods are right for you.
I have a simple ritual I use for very bad days, or days when I’m overwhelmed and need to get my head straight. As someone who is very accustomed to the depths of my subconscious, I’ve had to learn a few tricks over the years to stop myself from sinking, but it may take some time to get used to.
First, I intentionally load my pipe or vaporizer while I think about what I’m doing and why. Why am I smoking? How can cannabis help me? Do I need to let go of something that’s holding me back from my fullest potential? Then, I focus on the question as I inhale and exhale.
Remember, not everything is going to go away after you finish. Acknowledge any feelings that come up even if they’re tears, pain or a soft sense of peace. There’s no one to judge you on your response because it’s needed in order to move past what’s pulling you down. A ritual has many components, so feel free to incorporate this quick ritual into your own practice.