So Moses was a drug fiend?

Posted: March 5, 2008 in Atheism, News, Religion

The following news story caught my eye in my daily perusal of main media headlines.  It speaks how Moses was quite possibly under the effects of psychedelic drugs when he, if he existed, was on Mt Sinai and saw other strange effects like the supposed burning bush.

Moses high on Mt Sinai: Israeli study

Moses was on psychedelic drugs when he heard God deliver the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, an Israeli researcher claimed in a study published this week.

Such mind-altering substances formed an integral part of the religious rites of Israelites in biblical times, Benny Shanon, a professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem wrote in the Time and Mind journal of philosophy.

“As far as Moses on Mount Sinai is concerned, it was either a supernatural cosmic event, which I don’t believe, or a legend, which I don’t believe either, or finally, and this is very probable, an event that joined Moses and the people of Israel under the effect of narcotics,” Dr Shanon told Israeli public radio.

Dr Shanon, who says he himself has dabbled with such substances, says Moses was probably also on drugs when he saw the “burning bush”.

“The Bible says people see sounds, and that is a classic phenomenon,” he said, citing the example of religious ceremonies in the Amazon in which drugs are used that induce people to “see music.”

He mentioned his own experience when he used ayahuasca, a powerful psychotropic plant, during a religious ceremony in Brazil’s Amazon forest in 1991.

“I experienced visions that had spiritual-religious connotations,” he said.

He said the psychedelic effects of ayahuasca were comparable to those produced by concoctions based on bark of the acacia tree, that is frequently mentioned in the Bible.

I would have to indulge in a hearty chuckle if this was ever confirmed, imagine how much more interesting your average snooze fest church service would get if everybody could literally see angels floating about and colourful rainbows erupting from the church organ as it played…!

And in an unrelated comment, the WordPress people really need to work on making this thing much more compatible with Firefox.  Really, there is no good reason to use Internet Explorer any more – smart people go with Firefox.

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Comments
  1. ozatheist says:

    I always thought those biblical people were on drugs.

  2. chefchrisb says:

    That is very interesting…I think if the church promoted this a little more, they may have a few more people in the pews 🙂

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