Lost in Translation


 Kaneh-Bosm or Cannabis

Kaneh-Bosm or Cannabis is mentioned 5 times in the Old Testament. The first occurrence appears in the Holy Anointing Oil as Calamus, (Exodus 30:23).  It has been argued that the translation of Calamus was a mistranslation which occurred in the oldest Bible the “Septuagint” and the mistranslation was copied in later versions.”


Was it Calamus or Cannabis

“If you actually accept the Calamus translation for the Holy Oil, then you assume that God specified in Exodus 30:23 a drug commonly known as herbal Ecstasy.  Calamus contains an ingredient called asarone.  This is a hallucinogen which is metabolized in the liver as trimethoxyamphetamine which is known as herbal ecstasy.  Here is why that is not possible though, the Middle Eastern version of this plant is far more toxic than its North American Cousin.  Not only is deadly to flies and other insects for the amount that is called out in the recipe, in all likelyhood it would be toxic to humans too. That's not likely to be very successful for use in healing if your killing the patient. Plus the fact that in other places in the bible they say this was used in making textiles and as a food. Hemp or cannabis on the other hand has been used for thousands of years in making cloth, paper, oil and used as a food. Hemp seeds in fact are one of the healthiest things you can eat.

The Exodus 30:23 reference refers to sweet Calamus.  If you look at this in the Strong’s concordance where they spell this as qaneh rather than kaneh, they pronounce this as Kaw-Naw, a reed, calamus, and cane are listed as possible translations.  The term sweet used in Exodus 30:23 in Hebrew is Bosem.  According to the Webster’s New World Hebrew Dictionary, Bosem is perfume; scent.  The Concordance: the Hebrew is Bosem #1314, fragrance, by impl. spicery; also the balsam plant:—-smell, spice, sweet (odour).

In some Bibles sweet calamus is translated as aromatic or fragrant Cane.  It is where the bosem is fused to the word kaneh or qaneh that the cannabis translation becomes apparent.  So then to pronounce this we have kaw-naw-bosem, and is spelled in English qaneh-bosem or kaneh-bosem.

Timothy Tuck
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Saturday, 22 July 2017 06:25
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Last modified on Tuesday, 15 August 2017 10:45
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Holy Christ Oil

"Cannabis has a very rich history of medicinal use that dates back thousands of years and across many cultures.."