“Comply with your individual gentle,” Carlos Santana tells Leafly readers
We dare to find a more authentic front man running a well-known cannabis brand in 2020 than Carlos Santana.
Cannabis has been part of the music icon's life – from birth in Autlan, Jalisco, Mexico, to childhood in Tijuana, to high school in San Francisco, where Woodstock is played, to travel the world to today at the age of 73 the island of Kauai, where Carlos rode the pandemic.
Santana aficionados across California are available now at pharmacies in the Bay Area and Southern California and can share their herbal frequency with Santana's new Mirayo weed brand. Three types of pre-rolls or 7-gram flower jars – Radiance, Symmetry, and Centered – span the spectrum from Sativa to Indica.
Ten-time Grammy-winning Santana has teamed up with the same Santa Rosa, CA company that runs the Mind Your Head weed brand owned by Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart and Marley Naturals of Bob Marley's family.
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Mirayo means "my ray" or "my light" in honor of Santana's Mexican heritage and hippie ethos. In this lightly edited interview, Jerry Garcia's protégé and San Francisco-based rock promoter Bill Graham challenges Leafly readers to realize that "Heaven is a choice" and "listen to your own light".
Leafly: Congratulations on starting your cannabis brand.
Santana: Yes, I am very grateful to be with my brother Bob Marley and Mickey Hart.
Your history with cannabis dates back to when you were a kid and your mother was doing topics in Tijuana? This is so crazy.
Santana: Yes, the drug has always been used by Indians from Canada to Brazil. They always knew that there was “medicine” and “drugs”. Medicine – Mother Nature makes with the help of photosynthesis, the sun. Medicines are made by a man in a laboratory. So there are drugs and then there are drugs. And my mother always knew about herbs for tea and ointment and all sorts of things.
Basically, it's about healing and correcting the molecular structure.
Leafly: Arthritis cannabis packs are thousands of years old and nobody knows about it. Mexican folk chemistry and folk pharmacology pegged this stuff down because it sounds like that right after Columbus.
Santana: Right, you have two dimensions of consciousness or lack of consciousness on this planet. You have the ones who believe that there is no light in you, you are a wretched sinner. And people like shamans, Indians, from Timbuktu to Siberia, who know that there is another way to become aware of your own healing powers.
And once you know these ingredients and nutrients that the earth makes, you are an adversary for the people who make big bucks selling opioids. Every single commercial on television. So you have these medicines, people who make a lot of money selling opioids, and things that a lot goes wrong with if you want to cure something. (And they tell you, "If you do that, this other stuff is going to happen.") But people who have wisdom – not smart fools, wisdom – know that it's something to heal and correct, not a little To start band. Help, but you never really fix it.
If you bring a cure to the pain, not with a pill, but with something that the earth makes – both affect the molecular structure. And both depend on the word "belief".
At 73, Carlos Santana remains a true hippie and "consciousness revolutionary" from Haight-Ashbury. (Courtesy Mirayo)
When I found out what I had learned from my mother and what I had learned from the hippies at Haight-Ashbury, I found that there were two different frequencies on this planet: the frequency of self-deception; and the frequency of self-discovery.
Leafly: San Francisco in 65, Mission High School, can you describe what cannabis culture was like back then? Do you remember your formative experiences in middle and high school?
Santana: I remember San Francisco at that particular time being the zero point for the consciousness revolution. The pot used to be sold in matchboxes.
And I remember those who smoked it, they specifically listened to The Doors or John Lee Hooker, or of course Jimi Hendrix and The Beatles.
As soon as the Beatles met Bob Dylan, the square stuff went out the window. The whole boy band went out the window and they became more conscious of the music, the writing.
That's because they discovered what Bob Dylan discovered, which is weeds and mushrooms or whatever. And then suddenly you saw the Beatles with really long hair and the music became different.
Mirayo comes in 0.5 gram pre-roll packs of 5 and 7 gram flower jars. (Courtesy Mirayo)
Much of San Francisco pervaded the whole world in the Midwest and universities, and the consciousness revolution makes you question authority if it is not enlightened by God. They don't just get high, they turn on, turn on, and fall off. Quit being a droid. An idiot. A robot that is only programmed by religious officials to follow a certain system. That's why hippies were a threat to the institution.
When you have taken a token, something else has opened in your perception, like the doors of perception. That's why we loved The Doors and The Grateful Dead. Because they helped people in the Midwest get to San Francisco – don't come here and get a fake wig or mustache. Come here with real, real principles: "How do we influence this planet with benevolence and for the greatest good?"
Hippies were different to me than to many people. I am still a hippie. I will always be a hippie. Because hippies want a different form of principles and ideologies that benefit everyone; not just the few who are greedy.
Leafly: Do you feel like your life path was set when you left San Francisco to go to Woodstock and play?
Santana: Yes, the two main characters in my life at the time were (pioneer rock promoter) Bill Graham and Jerry Garcia. It was they who looked at me with the eyes that they saw in me, something I didn't see in myself.
Somehow Bill Graham, Jerry Garcia and Michael Bloomfield, Tito Fuente, BB King, some others saw in me something worth caring for.
When they saw me they had a certain smile and Jerry grabbed the guitar and said, "Hey, did you try that?" And he put his fingers on the guitar's neck and gave me a specific passage.
Jerry wasn't unsure about sharing. People who are unsure don't want to share it. They give you your back. They turn their backs on you because they don't want you to steal their things. Jerry was the opposite. And the same with Bill Graham.
“Heaven is a choice. No condition or goal. A decision."
– Carlos Santana
I was really, really blessed. Here I am still with Mickey Hart, part of something that still extends goodwill to all of humanity.
Leafly: We're into 2020, 11 states have legalization, more than 30 have medical uses, the MORE bill is in the House of Representatives, and 11 years ago you told Obama we should legalize. How does it feel when the arc of cannabis policy reform in America bends in these decades? How does it feel to a person who has seen it all?
Santana: It feels like justification. It feels like the older people who were square and they drank whiskey and scotch and whatever, and they see anyone who smokes pot and long hair as communist and dirty – it feels good that they either turned a leaf or you died. And they took that negativity with them.
Your children and the children of their children realized what we knew: We must expand our minds beyond the Bible and the Constitution. We have to listen to our own light.
Someone who tells you "It's a delusion", "Only Jesus is light" and you are chopped liver? That's what the hippies were about – like: "No! The consciousness of Christ is for everyone!"
And they didn't want you to think that way because they make money like pimps who exploit you. take advantage of your faith. In Kauai alone there are about 20.26 channels of ministers selling you lies and illusions about what you should be doing or what you should be to get to Heaven.
And so it is here, and I'll say it again: Heaven is a choice. No condition or goal. A decision.
Leafly: Has cannabis played a role in your spirituality?
Santana: Yeah. They go hand in hand symbiotically. When you hear Sgt. Peppers or anything with Jimi Hendrix the first three albums, Santanas Abraxas – you know that there is certain music, you know that spirituality and smoking the herb – Bob Marley's & # 39; One Love & # 39 ;, I mean, look You: No matter how hip you think you are, if you're not for the good of all – and if you don't groove at a Grateful Dead concert or a Santana concert – you could be the king of the bunch or what Anyway – just because you smoke weed or use drugs doesn't make you hip.
(John) Coltrane didn't do that. Herbie (Hancock) doesn't do that.
What makes you really, really hip and wise is when you listen to your own light and come high with your own spirit.
It helps me get to a place where I had to learn to distance and step back. From everything I've been taught and programmed like a computer laptop.
Because when you are born, you are born with the same knowledge that Tesla and Einstein have, but they fail you. They convert you to a wretched sinner who is good for nothing, only Jesus has the toilet paper and you are full of shit. Like "What ?!"
And we love Jesus. We love Buddha, Krishna, Allah, Rama – we love the consciousness of Christ. What we don't like is someone pimping you with negative programming about who you should be instead of what God has permeated you.
So, yes, for me both belong together like a peppermint pencil: you have turned red and white, and you have consciousness and spirituality. You are aware When you take a token, something happens to your peripheral vision. Suddenly you are using all the mirrors around you. Because you have options.
"… when you take a token, you stop time and step into eternal moments."
A square is when you can only see through a window. A conscious person sees through all the windows that you are. Not just one. All windows should be put in a place where you can heal.
That's why Jerry Garcia and I and whoever play – we play music to heal people of fear and disharmony. Grateful Dead concerts – they would say it's about "oneness, harmony and the celebration of the spirit in life". It's all about this. It's not complicated and you feel good.
Leafly: You're 73 – do you still smoke weed or is it more tinctures, if at all?
Santana: I'm in a place where I recently knew that I was very flattered and honored that people had come to me and given me this opportunity to be part of Mickey Hart and Bob Marley.
I have no problem pledging whatever we would do financially to the Indian reservations. I have no problem because by the grace of God according to Abraxas, I don't have fancy, strange things to have. I'm not in the mood for materialistic things. I am grateful that on this planet I can serve India, Africa, South America and especially the Indian reservations – Navajo, Apaches, Hopi.
I promise my sisters and brothers whatever I get in this company – because it's a company, an adventure – to have pure, fresh and clean water and possibly the potential to go to universities and get further training and lawyers too so that we can fight for our own rights in a spiritual way. I have no problem promising anything, and I mean anything to help my sisters and brothers. That's what I'm talking about here.
Leafly: Do you get free samples?
Santana: I have some of these. I've lived in Kauai since March and they couldn't send it to Kauai because it's still illegal to send it from one state to another. I like the way it looks, I like the way it feels, and at some point I'll be able to take part in creating a new narrative with them. I am going to do something that introduces saying "cool" or "cool meditation". Maybe the herb has a little bit minty, minty fresh – you take a token and it's like Mentos and you say "heyyy".
Leafly: Was there ever a time when cannabis wasn't a friend in your life?
Santana: From the beginning it was always around me. I made up my mind between 72 and 82 not to do anything. I became like a West Point military man by moving on a spiritual path. All I did was drink water and grilled cheese sandwiches and salads. No meat. No smoking herb. Nothing. No wine. No nothing. And it helped me. It helped me become more of who I am now.
Now I know what to appreciate. If I take a token now, I can really appreciate Jimi Hendrix and The Grateful Dead and Miles Davis, Coltrane. Because when you take a token you stop time and step into eternal moments. There is a difference between time and eternity moments, like spiritual moments, sacred moments.
And so, with all due respect, we would say: "A square does not immediately know the value of eternity." William Blake did. He wrote poems about it. Bob Dylan was the pied piper for a long time, like it or not. Everyone was watching what Bob Dylan said or did, including Jimi Hendrix.
Because Bob Dylan's consciousness, poetry, and just music had something that made us believe that we were precious, unique individuals with authenticity. That's why we love Bob Dylan, including the Beatles. When they saw Bob Dylan, they weren't the Beatles anymore. They became conscious musicians.
Leafly: Thanks Carlos.
Santana: Thank you very much and be of value and thank you for helping transmit the frequency of benevolence. Peace.
David Downs directs news and lifestyle coverage as chief of the California Bureau for Leafly.com. He has written for WIRED, Rolling Stone, and Billboard, and is the former cannabis editor of the San Francisco Chronicle and author of several cannabis books including & # 39; Marijuana Harvest & # 39; by Ed Rosenthal and David Downs. He is the co-host of the Hash podcast. TW: @davidrdowns | IG @daviddowns