Do a Mitzvah

Posted on 16 July 2017

Vireo Health, one of five companies awarded a license by the State of New York to sell and grow marijuana announced last week that all of its products received kosher certification from the Orthodox Union.


I first learned of the word mitzvah, many years ago when I married into a Jewish family. I loved this word and all it came to represent. As I had children and they began attending nursery school at our Temple, I volunteered for mitzvah days with them. Hearing that using medical cannabis had been declared a mitzvah by the Orthodox Union, just made me smile. (ok – I cracked up a little).


Merriam Webster defines the word Mitzvah as follows:

  1. a commandment of the Jewish law; 2. A meritorious or charitable act.


Rabbi Menachem Genack, the CEO of OU Kosher said: “Judaism prioritizes health and encourages the use of medicine designed to improve one’s health or reduce pain. Using medical cannabis products recommended by a physician should not be regarded as a chet, a sinful act, but rather as a mitzvah, an imperative, a commandment.”


With recent articles on how Cannabis is helping not just the symptoms of cancer but the cancer itself; to all of the vets and non vets who have PTSD and need relief (and a call on their behalf to our NY Senators), we must have more groups, spiritual leaders, and advocates making these types of statements so people come out of the dark ages and see the light.


Thank you, thank you Rabbi Genack for this bold step. We need more leaders to acknowledge the importance of the medicinal value of cannabis, so people are not stigmatized about a beautiful choice that they can make for themselves and their bodies. So go ahead, do a mitzvah and help your body enjoy it’s journey.

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