Yoga and cannabis: Ganjasana melds plant science and an ancient tradition
Cannabis and yoga are very trendy at the moment and it’s not hard to find a yoga class in marijuana-legal states that in some way incorporates cannabis use. But the tradition of cannabis and yoga actually goes back centuries, according to Rachael Carlevale, founder of the Colorado-based Ganjasana yoga system.
“If we look at the roots of yoga practice you can see that ganja was a part of that,” she says during a telephone interview with The Cannabist. “In India you see the Sadhus (Hindu holy men) sitting in meditation; they are smoking ganja. And if you look at the ancient Vedic texts there is evidence that they used a (cannabis) drink called bhang, for example.”
Ganjasana is a combination of ganja, a word with Sanskrit roots that’s now universally used for cannabis, with asana, another Sanskrit word that describes yoga postures. Carlevale describes her system as a blending as well; what she calls a “conscious pairing of regenerative cannabis plant medicine with the practices of yoga, meditation and mindfulness.”