Celebrating Passover With Cannabis

Passover is here - and one group has Jews incorporating cannabis into the traditional Passover Seder, where families and friends gather to read and discuss the text of the Haggadah, drink four (or more) ritual cups of wine and partake of symbolic foods.

The idea of introducing marijuana into Passover started with Roy and Claire Kaufmann of Portland, Oregon.

"This year the issue of medical and adult use marijuana will be on the ballot in states all across the country," the Kaufmanns said in a press release. "This Seder is a lot of fun but it serves a "higher" purpose. It's aim is to bring intentionality back into the experience of cannabis consumption."

The Kaufmanns encourage people to download the Haggadah and invite their friends and family to what they call "a kinder Seder table." As they explain, "the goal of hosting a Cannabis Seder is to provide a familiar and fun venue to have a new, often-uncomfortable conversation about marijuana prohibition, race and justice. Why is Passover a time to tell this story? Because the story of mass incarceration and the oppressions of prohibition parallel the Exodus story."

Cannabis on the Seder plate is, for them, a natural addition: marror, or "bitter herbs," are already eaten on Passover in keeping with the biblical commandment in Exodus 12:8 ("with bitter herbs they shall eat it.").

Whether you're observant, or merely an observant - the cannabis Haggadah "contains all the traditional elements of a full Passover Seder [...] while "sparking up" lively conversations around your dinner table."


Few other entrepreneurs in the cannabis space have their hands in quite as many ventures as Lorne Gertner. Currently dubbed the "godfather of the Canadian cannabis industry," Gertner told Civilized, "If we could live through normalization, we could change the world." Hailing from the fashion industry, this Toronto native says he's on a mission to "make the world a better place through cannabis and design excellence." The only catch is, well, normalizing cannabis — and that's where Gertner's keen eye for style comes in. "In the old days, you were going to be different or you were going to be normal," said Thom Antonio, Gertner's friend, creative director, and collaborator of 35 years.

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