I am Indian and Nepali and have always been drawn to the blessing that is marijuana. As a child, I was told drugs were bad and poisons. In reality, ganja and charas have long been intrinsically linked with Hinduism. My grandparents drank bhang on Shivratri, and Indian sadhus and the working classes regularly use ganja. The government of India even has stores that sell ganja and bhang in selected locations in India, and a week's worth of ganja costs virtually nothing anywhere in India. Ganja is to be respected as it is powerful and can be detrimental if used to excess, but it can definitely be used as a spiritual tool if looked at in that way (and not as an intoxicant, as many of today's young people look at it, particularly in the US where I have spent much of my life). It should not be used for wild parties, but for introspection, meditation and deep thought, and it should be used in this manner sparingly. Those who use ganja know it will not make you act stupid like alcohol will, but those who have used it to excess will know it is powerful and can make one extremely uncomfortable. Treated with respect, it is a beautiful thing and can truly help one grow.