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Ancient Israelites burned cannabis to 'stimulate ecstasy'

Frontal view of shine's cella - a small room containing cult objects - at Arad, as rebuilt in the Israel Museum from the original archaeological find
 

Worshippers at a Jewish temple dating back more than 2,700 years likely smoked cannabis during cultic ceremonies, ancient Israeli limestone reveals.

Analysis of material on two Iron Age altars, discovered at the entrance to a shrine in Israel, were found to contain cannabis, as well as frankincense. 

Renowned as one of the gifts brought by the Three Wise Men, the aromatic resin was regularly burned by priests during ancient ceremonial rituals. 

But the presence of cannabis suggests the use of a deliberate psychoactive, to stimulate ecstasy as part of esoteric ceremonies. 

Tel Arad is one of the most important archaeological sites in Israel, on which remains of a fortified city was found. It's located west of the Dead Sea, about six miles from the modern Israeli city of Arad

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