What is elevationism?
Elevationism started in Denver, Colorado with a small group of individuals unsatisfied with the outdated, organized religions currently available to them.
Church members are called Elevationists and our lifestance is that an individual’s spiritual journey, and search for meaning, is one of self-discovery that can be accelerated and deepened with ritual cannabis use. We use the sacred flower to reveal the best version of self, discover a creative voice and enrich our community with the fruits of that creativity.
As a group Elevationists demand the right to congregate and partake of their sacrament together. They do not believe it is just that they be thought of as criminals for carrying out their deeply held religious traditions, no matter how new those traditions may appear to be.
Is the International Church of Cannabis connected to the Church of Cannabis in Indiana?
Our church has no connection to the organization with a similar name in Indiana. We organically evolved along independent branches of thought and spiritual practice.
What’s up with the whole 420 thing?
The Christian religion took symbols of fertility like eggs and rabbits and just made them part of their celebrations. Rebirth is the message of the Christian Easter. So those pagan symbols of the cycle of life still reinforce the basic message.
We are doing a similar thing with 420. It is already a symbol of cannabis culture. So, in the spirit of the age, i.e. cultural appropriation, all we have done is decided to make it an important time, date, and number in our religion. It’s still yours, but it’s ours too now.
Isn’t this just an excuse to smoke weed?
This is Denver. We can all legally consume cannabis here already. No, all we are doing is claiming our Constitutional Right to freely practice our religion.
How is using cannabis spiritual? How is it different from just getting high? How does one become an Elevationist?
There are as many paths to Elevationism as there are Elevationists. The Elevationist is awakened at the time that her cannabis experience becomes transcendental in nature.
No two people have the same Elevated experience. Therefore, no one person can tell another how to achieve her personal spiritual goals.
What is the point of the International Church of Cannabis?
The church is a focal point for people all around the world who wish to be a part of an organization that is accepting of cannabis use in one’s personal journey and search for meaning.
It is a meeting place for people to find support in their spiritual quest. There is no judgement in the church. Everyone is welcome to follow their own path as long as they remember to live by the Golden Rule. What’s the Golden Rule? Essentially, to treat others as you wish to be treated.
What’s with all the art toys, and all the bright colors and paint?
It’s true, our chapel is bright and colorful, however it is also a quiet space of contemplation and reflection. And yes, our meeting room is a wonderland, but why should places of spiritual growth be dull and uninviting?
Why should anybody take you seriously?
Should we be taken as seriously as the folks who believe that Jonah lived in the belly of a giant fish or that the wife of Lot turned into a pillar of salt?
What do the paintings and murals mean on the front of the building and the ceiling?
The meaning of the murals is not to be dictated to or by us as Elevationists. When one takes the sacrament and meditates on the meaning of the murals, one may have what feels like a transcendental experience. In those moments, one receives the meaning one requires at that time.
I can tell you this much, both Okuda San Miguel who painted the chapel and Kenny Scharf who painted the church facade, are modern day masters and we are grateful to have gotten them both to create unique works for the church.
What is the meaning of life?
I have no idea what the meaning of your life is. But, I would guess it is to find your own happiness.
As an Elevationist, I would say that your spiritual journey to find your meaning may be accelerated by using the sacrament of cannabis.
Life has no ultimate meaning that can be understood outside of our own terribly short time on this planet. We can only live the best that we can, enjoy the most, love the most, be the most - because, when we die, we exist only in memory.
What about Volunteering/Good Works?
By breaking down our delusions we have noted that volunteering is better than praying. Therefore, Elevationists think that taking action, not wishful thinking will make the world a better place.
We have obviously been working very hard on getting the church ready to open, but we will be volunteering in the community and making this building a center for good works in the community once we are done with the renovations.
Why do you say that cannabis is a sacrament?
Our lifestance is that when we ritually take cannabis our minds are elevated and we become a better version of ourself. And, to the Elevationist, the cannabis flower is a gift from the universal creative force.
Why do you think cannabis is illegal?
Cannabis enables church members to tear down the false realities created by most organized religions and the machinators of state. Cannabis gives us access to the source code of our mind, while breaking down our delusion and elevating us to reality. This is a dangerous situation for the traditional institutions that wish to control our lives.
What’s the worst thing about being an Elevationist?
Everybody thinks you are a Cheech & Chong or Harold & Kumar stereotype. So, we are also trying to redraw the ‘stoner stereotype’. Elevationists are serious, committed, and talented members of the community and, as such, deserve to be seen not as stoner stereotypes, but as vibrant artists and professionals.
Do you believe in God?
Elevationists are on their own spiritual journey. Some believe in the God of Abraham, some do not. Generally, as a group, we refer to a Universal Creative Force and leave it up to the individual to decide what that means.
Can a Jew or a Muslim or a Christian or whatever be an Elevationist?
Unlike other systems of spirituality, there is no need to convert to Elevationism. It claims no divine law, no unquestionable doctrine, and no authoritarian organizational structure. So, yes, anyone can become an Elevationist.
Further, Elevationism isn’t necessarily a replacement to existing faith, but a supplement to it. The Elevationist community is not bound together by the singular god or dogma one believes in, but rather by a flower that has positively influenced our lives and our spiritual growth.
Is this just a Denver thing?
Not at all. Although, Elevationists in Denver are able to stop by the church in person, Elevationists worldwide can take part in much of what is going and, and will be able to stream the programming live. We see this as the start of a worldwide movement.
Do You Allow Kids in the Church?
No, we do not allow anyone under 21 into the church when the sacrament is being burned.
There is significant scientific evidence to suggest that cannabis is not appropriate for the adolescent mind. And, the law says that 21 is the minimum age for the consumption of alcohol and cannabis, which we consider to be appropriate.