Evangelical Marajuana - Why?

I’d like to begin by saying that I am not asking “why?” in the exclamatory sense, as in “why do you people do this?!?!?!?!?!” (ears blowing steam, face red). I am actually looking for explanations, that is really what I’m here for.

A friend of mine, C, just spent an hour and a half in an IM conversation trying to convince me to smoke marijuana. He wrote impromptu poetry about the spiritual and personal tranquility and understanding that weed brings you. Let me repeat that in case you missed it.

He wrote impromptu poetry about the spiritual and personal tranquility and understanding that weed brings you.

He talked about my “fear” of marijuana and repeatedly asked me for “arguments” against his “case”. It was as though I had to present logical reasons to not use marijuana. I repeatedly countered his “arguments” with the most rational argument I could, this argument being that I don’t feel like smoking marijuana. He told me that all the world’s cultures have found that marijuana brings relaxation and that it would be good for me. Oh, and of course, he wanted me to use marijuana for my sake.

He had done this before, trying to convince me to smoke marijuana for an hour. I could go on and on describing his statements, since, after all, he went on for an hour and a half. There’s a lot that you can say about pot in that length of time. He told me that all the people he knew who tried it thought it improved their life and that he knows how I feel and that he was “once like me” (I doubt it…) and…you get the picture.


Why do these people do this? I don’t understand. Other people have gotten insistent about marijuana before with me, though not to such an extreme extent. I am searching for an explanation: what are the psychological forces that cause an evangelical pot advocate to act the way that he/she does?

I have no answer to this question, but I definitely want to add that I have experienced this before. The last time, I was talking to a friend and made a somewhat offhand comment about bogus shamanic practices. She spent the next 90 minutes trying to convince me that I absolutely need to experience ayahuasca. And that the only people who throw up violently from it do so because they are afraid of the experience.

My friend does have many beliefs that are not compatible with my somewhat Stoic and physicalist ones, but this one really takes the cake. I was interested in her point of view, but damn it, she knows me. The world could be ending and I still would not drink that shit.

I’ve been told that pot smokers would rather not smoke alone. And, if you’re in a group situation where almost everyone is smoking but not quite everyone, even if the non-smoking folks are cool it’s still a bummer.

I got this answer when I asked a pot smoking friend how to deal with a pot smoking boyfriend who would ditch me to go smoke, even though I let him smoke in my house. Basically, even though I was fine with it I was still a buzzkill because I didn’t want to do it myself.

Because he’s an asshole?

Maybe he was high

I wonder if it’s so he can validate his own choice.

Marijuana is a very mild hallucinogen. As with most hallucinogens, some people have experiences with pot that they interpret as being profound or mystical. They want to share these experiences with their friends. Some people are reasonable about this and will quickly accept that you’re not interested. Other people get really enthusiastic about their trips and can’t understand why someone wouldn’t want to experience such a mind-blowing enlightening thing. So they’ll get obnoxious and pushy when you decline.

It’s analogous to movies. Some people are unable to accept that the movie that changed their life just isn’t your cup of tea. They will just be gobsmacked that you don’t even want to give Pulp Fiction a shot, despite your repeatedly telling them that you just don’t like violent movies.

Often these people can be reasonable in every other area but their obsession.

What Larry said, but also: how old is this person and for how long has he been smoking weed? I have noticed that kind of fervor in young, new smokers. They’ve just discovered it, and isn’t it awesome?! That kind of thing.

It is because he seemed to get some ‘spiritual’ revelation that helped him and wants you to experience it. Trouble with that line is spiritual revelation is a personal thing and the timing in one’s life is also important. Perhaps letting him know that in your life’s journey you don’t feel the time is right to smoke pot.

Sounds like it’s something he really likes and would like to share it with friends. People get pushy with all kinds of stuff.

why does everyone with any belief feel they need to preach to others about it? this problem is not limited to pot smokers. I have actually found that they tend to be more able to get past it than other preachy types.

Maybe he was one the Jesus Weed*.

*New Dope Band Name

I’m not sure it has all that much to do with pot being an hallucinogen. I’ve done the same with cigarettes. No, I never tried to get someone to start smoking. But I’ve sometimes gotten upset when someone close to me decided to quit. I’m not quite sure why that was. Maybe it was like losing a bonding ritual, and therefore losing part of the friendship. Irrational, I know, but it was a curiously strong emotion.

So maybe to answer this question, we have to forget what the object of conversation is and focus more on the social aspects.

Has anyone else tried to talk a friend into starting up a habit or hobby that you have, or resented them for quitting the same? What was the emotion you had around it?

It can be very different with pot than with booze or coke or whatnot. With booze or coke it’s more like “Hey, let’s go out and party! come on man, it’ll be fun.” With pot it’s much more “You have to try this, it will change your life. You’ll see the world in a different way.” Some pot evangelists won’t even care if you go off and try pot by yourself, as long as you try it. Of course this is even more extreme with more powerful hallucinogens. It’s much more like religion than a hobby, and it’s a different attitude than you get with party drugs. Especially if the enthusiast is young, like filling pages says. Most older pot smokers realize it just isn’t that profound an experience.

It can be, but I’m not sure it has to be. I think it can be either or both.

But I think at the root of it there is an element of “My world is awesome, you need to be in it.”

I vote for this. Pushing intoxicants on someone who declines is just rude. If someone is in my home, I’ll offer them a beer or whatever I’m having, but if they decline, I’ll respect their choice and offer whatever non-intoxicating refreshments I may have–cola, water, tea, etc. I often decline intoxicants at other people’s homes, usually because I’m driving.

Well, that’s the flavor I’m getting from the OP. Very few people who want you to go to the bar with them and get loaded are going to spend and hour and half sharing their impromptu poetry about the spiritual and personal tranquility and understanding that Jack Daniels and Bud light brings. It’s just my experience but your evangalical pothead of the type the OP mentions isn’t about going out and having a good time. It’s about transforming the way you look at the world, sometimes even about directly perceiving God.

My experience on the receiving end of both kinds of evangelists has been “if you don’t do (my drug of choice), you’re a party pooper!” and “you can’t be having fun, you aren’t drinking/smoking!” Well, with those and also other users of recreational drugs.

I haven’t gotten that from people who should have known better since High School, perhaps because most of the people I’ve met later had already made up their minds about what to use and what not to use, and either they were cool with non-users or they jumped on me at the first chance (when possible, this meant “no second chance for you”).

I’ve shocked non-evangelic users by doing things like enjoy The Wall while sober, which apparently these particular friends had previously thought was an impossibility. As another friend put it “she doesn’t need to do drugs, she comes up with crazy ideas just fine being sober.” So I guess that’s another reason people who know me well aren’t going to try and psychedelize my world.

I’m fine with people who say “want some?”, it’s just the ones who can’t take “no” for an answer that are a pain in the ass. But these vocabulary-challenged ones are a PITA whether they’re trying to get you to smoke pot, drive faster, drive slower, bed them, or join their online guild.

It’s a spectrum. Some pot smokers are like the one in the OP, some are clandestine tokers on the other end of the spectrum. Some just do it like smoking tobacco, very casually.

Joe

Because solitary runs to Taco Bell late at night are not as fun as when you have a friend in the car that is just as high as you.