Our logo and what it means (part two)
Welcome to part two of our logo and what it means to us. In part one last week, we took a quick tour of logo design, language, aesthetics, technology, security, privacy and responsibility. This week our journey continues with prohibition, legality, and the long human history associated with this celebrated plant. Plus, we explain why we designed our logo around the Simplified Chinese character for cannabis.
According to 'Marijuana - The First Twelve Thousand Years' by Ernest L. Abel (1980),
'The earliest record of man's use of cannabis comes from the island of Taiwan located off the coast of mainland China. In this densely populated part of the world, archaeologists have unearthed an ancient village site dating back over 10,000 years to the Stone Age.'
Hemp was revered by ancient Chinese for its versatility to provide tough fibre for fabric, string, and paper production. Since the 1st century A.D. without the thread of hemp, the ancient Chinese, Arabs and Europeans would have struggled to spread religion and scientific knowledge using bamboo and papyrus scrolls. They often cost and weighed more and were far less durable than hemp paper.
Hemp was not only useful to the ancient Chinese for just its fibres. Emperor Shen Nong is thought to have discovered the healing effects of cannabis around 2,800BC. He is often credited as the father of traditional Chinese medicine and for teaching the Chinese how to farm.
The earliest Chinese pharmacopoeia has recognised Cannabis as one of the 50 'fundamental' herbs in traditional Chinese medicine.
Every part of the hemp plant is used in medicine ... The flowers are recommended in the 120 different forms of (風 feng) mental disease, in menstrual disorders, and in wounds. The achenia (fruit), which are considered to be poisonous, stimulate the nervous system, and if used in excess, will produce hallucinations and staggering gait. They are prescribed in nervous disorders, especially those marked by local anaesthesia. The seeds ... are considered to be tonic, demulcent, alternative [restorative], laxative, emmenagogue, diuretic, anthelmintic, and corrective. ... They are prescribed internally in fluxes, post-partum difficulties, aconite poisoning, vermillion poisoning, constipation, and obstinate vomiting. Externally they are used for eruptions, ulcers, favus, wounds, and falling of the hair. The oil is used for falling hair, sulfur poisoning, and dryness of the throat. The leaves are considered to be poisonous, and the freshly expressed juice is used as an anthelmintic, in scorpion stings, to stop the hair from falling out and to prevent it from turning gray. ... The stalk, or its bark, is considered to be diuretic ... The juice of the root is ... thought to have a beneficial action in retained placenta and post-partum hemorrhage. An infusion of hemp ... is used as a demulcent drink for quenching thirst and relieving fluxes.
Even 1st century Daoists priests 'interested in magic and alchemy' experimented with and were recommending the addition of cannabis seeds to their incense burners as a way of achieving immortality. Recent archaeological evidence now confirms the earliest cannabis smoking occurred in China least 2,500 years ago. Possibly 'associated with ritual or religious activities' of the earliest human spirit.
For ten millenniums this plant has been at the heart of all social and economic transformation. Prohibition was an attempt by politicians and industrialists who wanted to erase the legal history of this plant's incredible natural utility and value. For them, by changing the legal definition, this would further their interests.
What is the result of this change? Chronic pain, mental health crisis, addictions to drugs, lack of productivity, sedentary lifestyle, the destruction of our community, our environment, loss of consciousness, loss of freedoms, and a rollercoaster ride into oblivion. For the vested interests, the prohibition experiment of the last century was a success. For everyone else, it's been a disaster.
We all have a limited amount of time on Earth. We want to discover ourselves, run free with joy, and heal from pain, live a life well-lived. So when designing our icon, we needed something that demonstrated our accessibility, utility, and common value. Because in the end, we are just like you. We are all created from the same magical dust that sparked life into our 4.543 billion years old planet.
'During the course of its long history in China, hemp found its way into almost every nook and cranny of Chinese life. It clothed the Chinese from their heads to their feet, it gave them material to write on, and it became a symbol of power over evil.' Marijuana - The First Twelve Thousand Years by Ernest L. Abel (1980).
Thanks to computer scientists working for the CIA, and a communist New York banker returning to China, with our inspirational team of legends across history, we have the opportunity to be with you on our mission to deliver legal cannabis to you.
Choosing the simplified Chinese character for cannabis, hemp, we take lessons from history and the knowledge discovered to form our roots. By creating 麻.app®, we hope to expand our collective consciousness through authentic products, reliable service and continue to honour the symbol of hemp as a tradition of power over evil.