Benny Shanon, professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, has argued that the miraculous sights and sounds in the Exodus account of God’s giving of the Torah to Moses may have been drug-induced.
And how do you think he deduced that?
Shanon, who published his theory in the scholarly journal “Time and Mind”, said the Mount Sinai spectacle recalled a “trip” he experienced after drinking psychotropic drugs of a kind that can be found in some desert plants.
“I experienced visions that had spiritual-religious connotations,” Haaretz quoted him as saying. “It seems logical that something was altered in people’s consciousness. There are other stories in the Bible that mention the use of plants: for example, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the Garden of Eden.”
And here’s the kicker:
But he added: “I have no direct proof of this interpretation.”
According to Shanon, the drug theory is more feasible than other explanations for the Mount Sinai story — that indeed the Israelites communicated with God, or that it is all just a fairy tale.