Currently in Japan, there is a strong perception that marijuana is an illegal drug, but in fact, the relationship between Japanese and marijuana has a long history. In this article, I will tell you more about the regulations on marijuana in Japan, the history of its use in Shinto rituals, and the current situation.
Regulations and Laws on Cannabis in Japan
In Japan, there is the Cannabis Control Law, which has strict regulations on its use in the country.
This history is based on the directive by the GOQ (General Headquarters of the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers) enacted by the United States after World War II.
So, the current Japanese laws against marijuana have not been changed at all since World War II.
In Japan, not only the possession of marijuana, but also its use, research, importation, sale, and almost everything else is prohibited. Cultivation is also strictly regulated and requires a “Marijuana Handler’s License” granted by the prefectural governor.
As medical marijuana is gaining market share around the world, Japan is completely behind the curve.
Marijuana plants have been used in Japanese Shinto rituals
The shimenawa used in Japanese Shinto rituals is made of hemp grass. In Japan, this plant is also called “Asa” (hemp). Cannabis is rich in strong fibers.
In Shinto rituals, these fibers are thought to wipe away impurities and bad luck, and the plant is said to have the meaning of “cleanliness and purification. It is for this reason that shimenawa are used to decorate the front door and gates at New Year’s.
Most of the cannabis plants grown in Japan are intended for fiber use.
In addition to shimenawa, it is also used for clothing and basketry.
What are the facts about cannabis in Japan?
The popularity of CBD products in the United States has triggered a change in the prejudice against cannabis plants in Japan. The CBD contained in cannabis plants is a natural ingredient that is good for your health and beauty, and the number of users is growing rapidly.
In addition, the legalization of medical marijuana in countries close to home, such as the neighboring country of South Korea and Thailand, also in Asia, may have been a factor in overturning the prejudices of the Japanese. In addition, many states in the U.S. have legalized the use of marijuana plants for recreational purposes.
In fact, in recent years, Japan has been considering the first clinical trial of a CBD-based drug for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Although it is currently a free treatment, more and more clinics in Japan are adopting it.
As a result, Japanese websites that used to advocate that “Cannabis plants are absolutely harmful to the body” are now presenting its effects and benefits, and explaining its ingredients in more detail.
Although it is still difficult to completely eliminate prejudice, it can be said that the current situation in Japan is changing, especially among the younger generation.
The relationship between Japan and cannabis plants – Summary
In this article, I have introduced the relationship between Japan and marijuana plants.
The regulations on marijuana have remained unchanged since the end of World War II, but they are expected to change in the future, and we need to continue to update our information.