Skip to main content

As we know, marijuana has been around for centuries, going back at least 5,000 years in India and China. It was used as medicine to treat everything from pain to anxiety to inflammation. In fact, there are many theories about how it originated where local tribes would grow it naturally and combine it with other plants or substances to create their own hybrids.

In modern times, cannabis oil is again making headlines for its potential health benefits. Many people have reported significant success using cannabis treatments for epilepsy, cancer, and arthritis, just to name a few.

But what most people don’t realize is that our tradition goes even farther back than those initial uses. When some hippies got together decades later and decided to celebrate the legalization of this plant by sticking the year “420” next to it, they were actually referencing an ancient Hindu festival.

The history of marijuana

Before there was smoking weed, people used cannabis in all sorts of ways to benefit their health. Certain parts of the plant were consumed as medicine or food. Some tribes would use it in rituals, celebrating its sacred nature.

Certain plants have special qualities that make them good for your overall health. For example, red clover leaves are full of vitamin C which help keep your immune system strong.

Some say that drinking green tea is more effective than taking supplements due to the tea’s compound chemicals. Many people enjoy green tea because of this potential boost.

Given how popular both red clover and green tea are, it makes sense to add either one to your daily routine as an easy way to improve your health.

When you smoke dried red clover leaves, you can easily consume two tablespoons (5 grams) every day.

Early marijuana use

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

Before people started referring to marijuana as weed or even cannabis, it was known only as “Indian hemp” or “Spanish moss.” These terms referred to parts of the plant that were used for medicinal purposes or in making clothing.

The word cannabis comes from the greek term kannabis, which means “hemp.” Kana refers to the kanji (Chinese character) for this word and biens fits the definition closer than hippie does today!

Early Europeans and Americans believed Indian Hemp had special powers. Some said smoking it could make you strong and help cure diseases. In fact, the earliest recorded uses of marijuana are medical ones. It was sometimes mixed into drinks or oils to aid digestion and relieve pain and inflammation.

People also dried and burned parts of the plant to release chemicals suchas THC. When they did so, they called these new compounds hashish or heroin.

In India, there is an old legend about how the princess Indira gained immortality by eating some of this plant. Many other cultures have similar stories, but no one can be sure if they are true. What we do know is that ancient Indians smoked lots of different plants with psychoactive effects.

The history of 420

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

Before there was an official start to the day, before it had a time and place, cannabis had a use and appreciation that went beyond just getting high. People have used cannabis for medicine since at least 2,000 BC in China, where cannabis pills are believed to be over 1,500 years old!

There were several theories as to why marijuana has been used for medicinal purposes for so long. Some say that it acts as a natural pain reliever or cures nausea. Others believe that it helps increase appetite or stimulates sleep.

Whatever the reasons, smoking or ingesting CBD (the non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis) is a popular way to use cannabis for medical benefits.

Many people also enjoy the relaxing effects that THC (the psychoactive component of cannabis) provides. Because cannabis can pack a powerful punch, however, extreme care must be taken when using for health issues.

Did you know? 420 is a slang term for marijuana

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

Before 1970, most Americans considered smoking weed to be very wrong. People were imprisoned for doing it or at least severely punished.

However, in October 1967, just one year before Colorado officially legalized cannabis, an annual celebration took place that was intended to honor all things marijuana-related. This event became known as “Four Twenty Day” or simply “four twenty day.”

The reason this occurred every April 20th has nothing to do with celebrating weed but instead refers to when 4:20 pm marks four years since California voted to legalize medicinal use of pot!

Since then, many people have referred to the time between 3:30pm and 5:30pm as “4:20” due to the timing of the cannabis legalization vote back in 2016.

This gave us the popular phrase “the green after 2 o’clock.” So why not celebrate by having some cannabis during those hours? That’s what people did in 2017 and now we refer to the afternoon of April 20th as “cannabis history.

Popular 420 dates

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

People get very passionate about cannabis, which is totally fine! But where did this popular holiday comes from? Before we dive into that, let’s take a look at some fun facts about marijuana.
Amp up your day by watching these twenty cool weed trivia videos.

While many people enjoy smoking pot, it is important to know what kind of effects it can have. Because marijuana contains THC, the main compound in cannabis, it can make you feel sleepy, dizzy, or hungry. It also depends on how much you use and what type of plant source you ingest whether it is healthy for you.

Some studies show that marijuana may help treat anxiety and depression, but there are other types of medication that work better than marijuana. More information here: What Is Marijuana Used For?

This article will talk more about the origins of the beloved 4:20 smoke-and-wait ritual.

Important 420 facts

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

While many people associate the term ‘four twenty-one’ with cannabis, it was actually coined in honor of a very special day back in 1941. On October 16th, an American serviceman stationed at Fort Hood near Austin, Texas received his honorable discharge after two years of service.

He decided to celebrate by smoking some marijuana and having one of the best days of his life. He then took to calling this afternoon “Four Twenty-One” because that’s how long it took him to get out of work (forty-two minutes).

The rest is history! Since then, the term has become synonymous with all things cannabis. Many use it as an occasion or reminder for a smoke break, while others connect it with a yearly celebration or festival.

There are even famous stories linked to 4/20 including one about rapper Jay Z who credits it with helping launch his career. But none of those are true! Ha ha!

While there’s no definitive proof whether John Williams intended to name his holiday after cannabis, it’s pretty obvious he liked it a lot. So much so that he made sure everyone knew about it by spreading the word and sharing his own personal connection with it.

420 culture

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

Since the early 2000s, people have been celebrating cannabis with the rise of what has come to be known as “420 Culture.” This term was coined in 2005 when two separate events took place within one week of each other. In Washington D.C., an individual lit up a joint in his car and rolled down his window for no apparent reason; he then called himself a “four-twenty person.”

A few days later, while smoking out at the beach, someone noticed that there were four twenty pep talks going on simultaneously — and they all featured the same speaker! So these individuals decided to meet up somewhere together, which led to the founding of the very first unofficial celebration of marijuana ––the yearly 4/20 Festival.

Since then, Weed Week (an annual event during April 20th)has grown into a worldwide phenomenon. People travel from all over to partake in the festivities, meeting others who celebrate this holiday every year and forming communities around it. Celebrities even get involved, most notably by offering their favorite smoke tip or funny statement about weed use.

These celebrations typically include some sort of giveaway or sale, like giving away free joints or buying them back to taste test. Some hold competitions to see how many times you can say either “hooray for pot!” or “marijuana!”

Many organize tours where participants learn about different types of medical marijuana and recreational uses.

Popular cannabis strains

The Origin of 420: A Cannabis History Guide

Some people may know what kind of products contain THC, but not much else. These individuals are sometimes referred to as ‘high-THC’ smokers because most of the cannabinoids in weed come from tetrahydrocannabinol.

However, there is another compound called cannabidiol (or CBD) that many people enjoy smoking or ingesting directly. Many refer to users who smoke or take CBD oil for this reason as being “cannabis friendly” or even “medical marijuana.”

There are several reasons why some people like either one of these substances alone or both at once. Some find it more relaxing than regular cannabis, while others believe it has health benefits such as pain relief and anti-inflammatory effects.

Many people use CBD to treat medical conditions such as epilepsy, chronic pain, arthritis, and inflammation. Because CBD does not cause intoxication, it can be used together with other medications without experiencing any unwanted side effects.

Leave a Reply