The simultaneous opposing action of marijuana is akin to balancing our entire system. Such balance in the ANS can be
understood as a charged equilibrium, which is defined as “well-being” experienced as physiological expansion and
psychological contentment and responsible for health.
The net effect is a highly functioning,
yet relaxed, system with better fuel. This is why, with marijuana, the feeling is both relaxed and alert, which explains,
in part, the experience of being “stoned.” Normally the body vacillates between the two opposing modes of being.
The effects of the complicated marijuana molecule somehow actually integrate these two modes, simultaneously, as absolutely
nothing else does.
Although specific effects of marijuana in the body
are well known, each has been taken in isolation without noting that both sides of the Autonomic Nervous System are conjoined.
Instead of a perspective that sees the whole person and the simple holistic effect of marijuana, a myopic and reductionistic
method of measurement has been employed, and marijuana’s profound meaning for health has been lost.
Marijuana, by its effect on the ANS,
enhances both sides of the brain. Through increased Sympathetic action, left brain perception is heightened, while, at the
same time, right brain reception is enhanced. This is a physiological fact. More blood, and cleaner blood, is sent to the
brain, as in the “fight or flight” reaction. And because of Parasympathetic dilation of capillaries, which signifies
relaxation, the blood supply to the entire brain is increased. More blood means more oxygen and consequently clearer and broader
thinking. Since marijuana works on both sides of the brain, the most noticeable effect, in our fast-paced mind set, is one
of slowing down, which blends the thrusting competitive attitude with the contrasting viewpoint of nurturance to arrive at
a more cooperative balance. This experience is, however, not innate to marijuana, but to the mental set of the subject. When
we are mellow, tired, and relaxed, marijuana is energizing and affords alertness, determination, and even strength. This variation
in the physiological effects has caused great confusion from an either/or framework. And the balancing nature of marijuana
(both/and) has not been understood. It both stimulates and relaxes, simultaneously, which equates to an unpredictable variation
in effect that is solely dependent on the state of its subject. When the system is sluggish, as with natives in warm climates
(Africa, India, South America), marijuana has been used extensively and for centuries to energize it:
A common practice among laborers... have a puff of a ganja (marijuana) pipe to produce well-being,
relieve fatigue, stimulate appetite. (Chopra and Chopra, 1939, p.3)
When the system is hyper-aroused, as in today’s lifestyle, marijuana calms. The significance
of this fact cannot be ignored. It explains the increased creativity reported as a part of the marijuana experience, because
when both sides of brain processes are heightened, both types of brain activity are greater. The left brain notices more,
while the right brain receives more. This is the unification of logic and intuition. The term “expansion of consciousness”
is explained physiologically as a “shifting of brain emphasis from one-sidedness to balance” (Sugarmena and Tarter,
1978), which fits precisely with the feeling called “high.”
Marijuana ingestion has been shown
to change the worried state by producing alpha waves, experienced as well being.
When we ingest marijuana, the heart
swells through capillary enhancement and is fueled more by more fully oxygenated blood, while, at the same time, its contractions
and expansions are greater, allowing for stronger pumping action to the rest of the body
As rigidity in the body is released
or reduced by the action of marijuana, there is a corresponding reduction of mental tension that translates into a feeling
of expansion and well being and explains the reverential attitude commonly expressed by marijuana lovers.
As the body’s workings can become
more harmonious with marijuana, the functioning of the five senses can be noticeably improved ....In our discussion, the trigger
to the high experience is marijuana, but many other activities can also produce it, such as jogging, chanting, fasting, isolation,
meditation, and prayer.
The marijuana experience itself does
not miraculously cure. Instead, it allows the body a respite from the tensions of imbalance, while exposing the mental confusion
of the mind. The marijuana experience of balance becomes a learned and, over time, somewhat permanent response as the essential
human tendency to homeostasis is reawakened and the natural healing process restored.
For a serious psychosomatic disease
such as cancer, the benefits to be derived from marijuana cannot be overstated:
1. The causal element of unconscious (repressed) pain can be ferreted out.
2. The breath can be restored to fullness, thereby eliminating directly the built up toxicity and, at the same time, enjoining
balance throughout the whole organism. A depressed system is a weakened system, and since it works holistically, marijuana
gives strength where weakness exists, and expansion and relaxation where there is contraction and nervousness.
3. The more richly oxygenated blood that is in effect with marijuana can help to cleanse the poisons at the cellular level.
4. And a broader perspective through activation of the entire brain
leads to positive feelings and thus eliminates the usual and debilitating attitudes so common in cancerhelplessness, depression,
fear, resignation, and dread.
Application of Marijuana:
In a Costa Rican study, it was found
that chronic marijuana smokers who also smoked cigarettes were less likely to develop cancer than cigarette smokers who didn’t
use marijuana. Since marijuana (smoking, as well as ingestion by other methods) dilates the alveoli, toxins are more easily
eliminated with cannabis use regardless of its method of application. Nicotine, on the other hand, constricts the alveoli,
so it is likely that the use of cannabis neutralizes, or even overwhelms the constriction, by its own tendency to dilation
...As an aid for all psychosomatic disease, marijuana can benefit the participant, generally because of its health-restoring
effects... The fear of marijuana... stems from its limitless potential for treating illness, in that both the pharmaceutical
industry and the medical monopoly would lose billions of dollars if marijuana became the non-drug of choice.