When it comes to organized religion, most people don’t think about bong rips or all day transcendental meditation ceremonies fueled by psychedelic drugs. But religious drug use has been a thing for as long as religion has been around. Shamans in South America and Africa have used psychedelics like ayahuasca and daime to put themselves into a trance since at least the 16th century, and the practice continues to this day in modern temples in places like Washington and New Mexico. To find out about churches that are okay with drugs, keep reading this list, make sure you remember to breathe, and maybe put on some soothing music.
Some of the spiritual drugs on this list are incredibly hard to get your hands on, and in a lot of cases the only way to experience them is by taking part in religious ceremonies led by someone who’s legally authorized to administer the substance. On this list of religions that condone drugs you’ll find religions that have been around for centuries sitting next to churches created as recently as the 60s that may or may not be an excuse to get super stoned. Despite their differences, the one thing that all of these religions have in common is their dedication to using drugs to find a higher plane of existence.
Read about these religions that actually ENCOURAGE people to use drugs, and if you’re inspired to run away and join one of these churches make sure to leave a comment so everyone will know which dimension they can find you in.
According to the loose tenets of Rastafariansm, Rastas believe that their bodies are the true temples of God, although there are three different "Mansions" of Rasta: Bobo Ashanti, the Niyabinghi, and the Twelve Tribes of Israel that have splintered into different versions of the religions. The Rastafarian way of life involves smoking cannabis and rejecting materialism.
In 2015 Bill Levin created the First Church of Cannabis as a means of achieving non-profit tax-exempt status. Levin claims that he and his members worship marijuana as a "a health supplement." In order to prove his religious status Levin even created his own version of the Ten Commandments called "The New Deity Dozen."
In Elbe, WA a group of shamans (shaymen? shami?) started The Ayahuasca Healings Retreat in order to help ease psychological issues like depression, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder with ayahuasca, a tea derived from hallucinogenic plants. For now, the retreat is a legal church that you can visit and get your hallucination on.
In order to avoid jail time in the '60s, Judith Miller created the Neo-American church and published the Boo Hoo Bible. Miller claimed that her use of LSD was protected under America's religious freedom act. Despite now being defunct, the church at one time boasted 20,000 members.