Hashish (pronounced /hæˈʃiːʃ/ or /ˈhæʃiːʃ/) (from Arabic: حشيش ḥashīsh, lit. "grass", from hashisha "to become dry"; also hash) is a preparation of cannabis composed of the compressed stalked resin glands called trichomes, collected from the cannabis plant. It contains the same active ingredients but in higher concentrations than other parts of the plant such as the buds or the leaves. Psychoactive effects are the same as those of other cannabis preparations such as marijuana. It is sometimes believed that the effects are different, but those perceptions usually stem from the increased potency of hashish, as well as variations between regionally different Cannabis specimens that are typically processed into hashish.
Hashish is often a solid or paste-like substance of varying hardness and pliability, and will soften under heat. Its color can vary from green, yellow, black, reddish brown, or most commonly light to dark brown.
It is consumed in much the same way as cannabis buds, combusted or heated by itself in a screened miniature smoking pipe, hookah, bong bubbler, vaporizer, hot knife, or smoked in joints mixed with tobacco, cannabis buds, or other herbs. It can also be eaten.
It is believed that hash first originated from Middle East, as this region was among the first to be populated by the cannabis plant. More reliably, it may have originated in Northern India which also has a very long social tradition in the production of Hashish which is locally known as Charas. It is hypothesized by UCLA's Abu Usaybia that this Charas is the same plant resin burned in the ceremonial "booz rooz" of ancient Persia. (see Usaybia's "Notes on Uyunu al-Anba fi Tabaquat al-Atibba", Berkeley: University of California Press, 1965.) Cannabis sativa subsp. indica grows wild almost everywhere in the Indian sub-continent and special strains have been particularly cultivated for production of 'ganja' and 'hashish' particularly in Kerala, Rajasthan and the Himalayas. The earliest hashish was created without the use of sieves. The ancients would gently rub their palms and fingers on cannabis buds for hours while resin accumulated on their hands and then scrape that resin off. This sort of primitive harvesting is undertaken even today in the Cannabis growing farms of Manali, Naggar and Upper Himachal Pradesh.
Consumption of hashish saw an increase in the 20th century, in Europe and America, associated with the hippie scene which promoted pacifism and introspection. Hashish use declined significantly in the United States starting in the 1980s for several reasons, including U.S. political pressures against Afghanistan and the ensuing Soviet invasion, the Reagan-escalated War on Drugs, a huge jump in price, and the success of marijuana cultivators in North America with new growing methods for increasing THC production, such as growing marijuana indoors.
No reports of a statistical linkage between hashish and violent crime have been published in known scientific literature, instead it has been found to generally inhibit aggressive impulses.
Hashish is made from cannabinoid-rich glandular hairs known as trichomes, as well as varying amounts of cannabis flower and leaf fragments. The flowers of a mature female plant contain the most trichomes, though trichomes are found on other parts of the plant. Certain strains of cannabis are cultivated specifically for their ability to produce large amounts of trichomes. The resin reservoirs of the trichomes, sometimes erroneously called pollen (vendors often use the euphemism "pollen catchers" to describe grinders with screens to catch kief), are separated from the plant through various methods. The resulting powder is compressed into blocks of hashish aided by heat, which can be easily stored and transported. Alternatively, the powder consisting of uncompressed, dry trichomes is often referred to as 'kief' instead of 'hashish'.
Mechanical separation methods use physical action to remove the trichomes from the plant. Sieving through a fine screen is a vital part of most methods. The plants may be sifted by hand or in motorized tumblers. Hash made in this way is sometimes called 'dry sift'. 'Finger hash' is produced by rolling the ripe trichome-covered flowers of the plant between the fingers, rupturing the trichomes, and collecting the freed resin that sticks to the fingers.
Ice water separation is a more modern mechanical separation method which submerges the plant's leaves in ice and water and agitates the mixture, sometimes in a Washing machine. The low temperature solidifies the resinous trichomes. They become brittle, and the mechanical agitation breaks them off the leaves. The waste plant matter, detached trichomes, and water are separated by filtering through a series of increasingly fine screens or bags (with pore sizes ranging from 220 to 25 microns). The trichomes of various sizes are then dried and pressed into solid blocks of hash. Kits are commercially available which provide a series of filter bags meant to fit inside standard bucket sizes. Hash made in this way is sometimes called 'ice hash', or 'bubble hash'. This method produces valuable product from leaf matter that would otherwise be discarded (after the plant's "buds" are trimmed for sale). The advent of this process has made hashish much more readily available in North America.
Chemical separation methods generally use a solvent such as ethanol or hexane to dissolve the lipophilic desirable resin. The remaining plant material is then filtered out of the solution and sent to the compost. The solvent is then evaporated, leaving behind the desirable resins, called honey oil, "hash oil", or just "oil". Honey oil still contains waxes and essential oils and can be further purified by vacuum distillation to yield "red oil". The product of chemical separations is more commonly referred to as "honey oil".
The main factors affecting quality are potency and purity. Different cannabis plants will produce resins with unique chemical profiles that vary in potency. Some forms of hashish are described as producing a "body stone" while others are more of a "head high". This is usually due to whether it was extracted from an indica or a sativa plant.
Tiny pieces of leaf matter or even purposefully added adulterants introduced when the hash is being produced will reduce the purity of the material. The tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content of hashish comes in wide ranges from 15–40%, and that of hash oil from 30–90%.
Hash is generally said to be black, brown or blonde. There is also hashish of greenish or reddish hue. A green tinge may indicate that the hashish contains a large amount of leaf material. Hashish color usually reflects the methods of harvesting, manufacturing, and storage.
Hashish is traditionally produced in warm conditions. It is traditionally found in a belt extending from North Africa, Egypt to North India and into Central Asia. The primary hash-producing countries are Iran, India, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nepal, Morocco, Lebanon and Egypt.
Charas is the name of hashish that has been hand-rubbed directly from the cannabis plant. It is primarily produced in Afghanistan and Pakistan and to a smaller extent the rest of the subcontinent. Today, the word charas is common word for hash in a majority of the subcontinent, despite the fact that different methods may be used other than the hand-rubbed method.
The most popular and sought after form of charas is produced in the tribal areas of Pakistan bordering Afghanistan. Popular destinations include the tribal areas themselves as well as adjacent Pakistani states such as Peshawar.
A visitor to the Rif Mountains and the town of Ketama in Morocco in December 1976 described the production of hashish. In unheated huts, each worker placed his hands and arms inside a fertilizer sack. The depths of the bag was filled with leaves of the cannabis plant. In the mouth of the bag was a plastic washing-up bowl, over which was stretched a sheet of "zero-zero" grade muslin. The worker rubbed the leaves of the cannabis plant against the muslin, resulting in a fine powder falling into the bowl. 100 grams of the powder would be wrapped in more of the same fine muslin, put onto a heated metal plate, and rolled down with a bottle. This process produces a slightly sticky solid brown mass in the form of a rectangular slab, quite a bit smaller than a paperback book and 5 mm thick. The block was then wrapped in cellophane. Sellers of this Moroccan hashish pointed to the imprint of the muslin on the surface of the block, and declared it proof that the product was "zero-zero", top quality.
In Afghanistan there is a method of making hash that resembles charas. First, cannabis resin is placed on a heated mortar about the size of a box, then the resin is threshed with a heavy object. The result is a very gooey, sticky black hash. This method is mostly used in villages around the Hindu Kush mountain region.
During the late 1930's during WWII around small villages in Turkmenistan, it was popular to extract "golden oil" from cannabis plants and mix it with crushed marijuana buds and leaves (usually pounds). Out of a cannabis plant they would take roughly half of the flowers/leaves and rinse it with rubbing alcohol to get a sort of sticky oil, the other half was ground into a very fine powder (each person would usually use a different ratio of each, or even just an extraction of the THC crystals and resins soaked in the golden oil). Both were then mixed with boiling water and blended to form a paste which they would flat to dry in the hot afternoon sun. They used it as a sort of "enhanced marijuana" medicinally for all sorts of things. It eventually became too much work to manufacture, the little villages consumed as much marijuana (in weight) in a month as some medium sized cities in the United States today. It is estimated, that in for every gram of cannabis, 10-20% was oil and 30% was hashish powder, and this is what they would combine. This is what they would call Turkmenistanian hash, and it was far superior to anything else.
Hashish is also produced in the deserts of northern Mexico, and throughout the western United States and Canada, in various simple forms of compressed THC crystals usually.
Like ordinary cannabis preparations, hashish is usually smoked, though it can also be eaten (more commonly than cannabis plant) or vaporised.
Hash is sometimes prepared for smoking by heating it with a flame, sometimes producing bubbling or sizzling as moisture and essential oils boil. It then softens and can be sliced with a sharp knife, crumbled into tiny pieces obtain maximum surface area when burning. The resulting lower burning temperature permits more THC to be released in its active form.
Used with hashish as with any cannabis, tobacco or other herb material, a vaporizer can volatize cannabinoids at temperatures as low as 140 °C, protecting against loss of this ingredient which occurs in burning, and eliminating carbon monoxide and other toxic combustion gases. Since hashish is solid, its surface area may be enlarged by cutting slices or breaking into small crumbs to achieve maximum cannabinoid vaporization.
Hashish may be smoked through a pipe, either alone or mixed with loose herb to aid igniting, with a screen to prevent small parts of burning hashish rushing in to clog the inner channel (colloquially 'shooters'). A hookah pipe or a bong provides water filtration, cooling the smoke for a smoother inhalation.
When using a screened long-stemmed glass or metal utensil, vaporization is achieved by holding a moderate (2-cm.) lighter flame for several seconds below the crater opening to heat the contents inside to around 385° F. but delay setting them on fire (410° F.), all the while continually sucking slowly through the drawtube.
Herbs may be burned alongside to assist vaporizing hashish. Hops (Humulus lupulus) flowers, previously ground to a fine particle size in a mesh-16 screen strainer, have a low combustion point, are delicate and mild, and interfere least with perceiving the taste of the hashish. Eucalyptus leaf adds a strong flavor, as does oregano. Mild species include basil, catnip (Nepeta cataria), damiana, dandelion, ginseng (leaf), lemon balm (melissa), marjoram, parsley, savory, tarragon, thyme, uva ursi (kinnickinnick), and various flowers.
A piece of hash may be ignited by cigarette coals or other means and placed inside a container, such as a plastic bottle. The smoke that collects inside can then be inhaled. "Dabous" or "Khabour", but most commonly "shisha" (glass in Arabic) is a North African technique. This technique is commonly referred to as "Bots" or "BTs" ("Bottle-Tokes") or simply "Ts/Tees" in Canada. "Hash under glass" is for smoking with minimal equipment. A small ball of hash can be stuck onto a safety pin opened and inserted through paper. The ball is ignited and then covered by a drinking glass. Smoke collects in the glass and can then be inhaled by tipping the glass slightly.
Hash may also be smoked in a method in which a magnifying lens is used to ignite the product with the power of the sun and the smoke is inhaled with a straw. This method works best in conditions in which the air is still.
HASHISH, or Hasheesh, the Arabic name, meaning literall "dried herb," for the various preparations of the Indian hem plant (Cannabis indica), used as a narcotic or intoxicant in th East, and either smoked, chewed or drunk (see Hemp and Bhang) From the Arabic hashishin, i.e. " hemp-eaters," comes the Englis "assassin" (see Assassin).
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Hashish is a sticky, thick, dark-colored resin (like sap) which is made from the cannabis plant. The cannabis plant's leaves and flowers contain a chemical or drug known as THC which gives a person who smokes or eats parts of the cannabis plant a feeling of euphoria (makes the user feel good or happy).
The two main drugs made from the cannabis plant are marijuana and hashish. Hashish has much more of the chemical THC (which makes users feel good or happy) than marijuana. Hashish is an illegal drug in the United States, Canada, and many other countries. It is controversial, since some people think it should be legal, some think it should be legal only for medical purposes, and some think it should not be legal at all.
To make hashish, workers rub cannabis blossoms with their hands to get the resin to stick to their hands, and then the resin is collected. Another way to make hashish is to sift the ground-up, dried leaves through a screen and compress the powder resin to make a "brick".
A more modern method of producing hashish is through alcohol extraction. In this method cannabis plants are ground up and covered in isopropyl alcohol or butane and left to sit. The resulting mixture is then evaporated of the alcohol leaving the active terpenoid and terpene compounds which can be used immediately or cooked into bricks.
When a person wants to use hashish, they usually smoke it by putting a small piece of hashish in a joint with tobacco or marijuana. Then the person lights the paper roll with a flame and inhales the smoke that comes out.
Another way that people use hashish is by putting a small piece of hashish in a pipe or bong then lighting it with a flame, inhaling the smoke. Some people also eat hashish, usually by mixing it into food or baked goods.
It is illegal (against the law) for people to have cannabis in most countries. If you live in the U.S.A (United States of America) it is illegal and you could be put in prison.
Hashish is not legal in the Netherlands, but there are no criminal laws against having a small amount of cannabis (marijuana or hashish), because the Netherlands has decided that having cannabis should not be a crime. Some other countries are starting to "decriminalize" marijuana as well (make using it or having it no longer be a crime).
In some countries, such as Canada and America, sick people with serious diseases can legally use marijuana if they have a prescription (a written note) from a medical doctor. When people with serious diseases such as AIDS or Multiple Sclerosis smoke marijuana, it helps them to have a good appetite for eating food. As well, when these sick people smoke marijuana, it makes them feel happy.
Hashish has much more of the chemical THC (which is a short form for "delta-9-tetra-hydro-cannabinol") than marijuana. THC is the chemical (or drug) which causes people who take hashish or marijuana to feel euphoria (happy). Hashish is a much stronger drug than marijuana.
When people smoke hashish (in a cigarette, a tin or glass pipe, or other forms of smoking apparatus like a bong) or eat hashish, certain sensations come about. One can start feeling any of the following depending on the strain or origin: happy, relaxed, feeling silly, cloudy (not able to think clearly) which can be descriptive of the type of high experienced. The term of "getting high" could mean that the effects are a more mental stimulation while other types that are for "getting stoned" tend to render the user in a relaxed and observational state. The two types of this "High", are called 1.) a heady high or 2.) couchlock. A heady high does exactly what it sounds like by creating mental stimluation that sometimes leads to exaggerated imagination and potential over analysis on simple subjects. When one "over does it", the stimulation can lead to various degrees of diziness, euphoria and a sensation of feeling uncoordinated. In a "couchlock" state, one becomes extremely focused on a singular action or topic, sometimes leading to an unproductive state. The latter is achieved depending on the strain of marijuana or hashish, and also depends on the amount of the drug taken.
Since hashish is much stronger than marijuana, people who take a very large amount of hashish may also see imaginary (not really there) colors or patterns, or see strange visions or thoughts which are not actually there (these visions are called hallucinations). Some people who take a large amount of hashish may start feeling scared, strange, or paranoid (worried that something bad is going to happen).
Hashish is less dangerous than many other illegal drugs that are commonly used. It is impossible for a person to die from an overdose of hashish. But a person who had a very large amount of hashish could start feeling sick, or feeling strange.
One of the dangers of using hashish is that a person is often less capable than when sober. This increases the risk of normal accidents slightly, but more importantly it changes the way you receive and process an emergency situation, which could be dangerous in activities like driving a car or motorcycle.
Smoking any drugs such as marijuana, hashish, or tobacco is bad for the lungs. Smoke hurts the lungs and the throat because the smoke has tar in it and contains chemicals that can cause cancer in the lungs or mouth if the person smokes over a long time period. A person who only eats hashish will not hurt their lungs or throat, but may take too much without noticing in time to avoid side-effects. A relatively newer process of inhalation which is much safer than smoking is vaporizing the Hashish. This method is based on increasing the temperature of the Hashish to about 190-195 degrees Celsius which is about the temperature THC vaporizes at but is far below the point when "carbons" begin being burned. The end result is the THC cells being breathed in combined with air rather than the THC cells being breathed in with smoke.
Most other illegal drugs, such as heroin, crack, and cocaine are very addictive. This means that if a person starts taking heroin, crack, or cocaine, the person will want to keep taking more of the drug, even if it is making them sick (ill).
Hashish and marijuana are not addictive like heroin, crack, and cocaine. Most people are able to use hashish as a recreational (for fun) drug, and stop taking it when they want to. However, some people who use hashish over several months or several years do get a type of addiction called a psychological ("in your mind") addiction. This means that the person is addicted to the high.
As well, people who use a lot of hashish every day may start feeling less motivated about life. A person who uses a lot of hashish every day may have less interest in going to school or going to work. They may also have less interest in seeing their friends or family, or doing activities or hobbies that they used to enjoy.
Hashish is often just called "hash". Slang terms vary from one country to country. A pipe used for smoking hashish is often called a "bowl". A water pipe for smoking hashish is called a "bong". There are also many slang terms for hashish smoking, such as "puffing" or "blazing". Many slang terms for cannabis intoxication, such as "getting high" and "getting stoned" are shared for hashish as the effects of cannabis / marijuana and hashish are the same.