When we smell a nice plant, we make a blessing on it -- either בורא מיני בשמים, or בורא עשבי בשמים, depending on what kind of plant it is. (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 216)

Ignoring, for the moment, the question of marijuana's permissibility (spoiler: it's forbidden, according to most opinions); would one inhaling vaporized marijuana make that bracha (presumably בורא מיני בשמים)? Marijuana doesn't smell good, by itself, but it can make a person feel good.

I guess the question can be boiled down to: is the bracha on smell triggered by an olfactory sensation, or by a הנאה (enjoyment) that comes through the sense of smell?

  • 1
    A Rov in Denver said he gets asked this question (since it's legal there). If I knew what he answered, I'd have an answer for you! Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 3:55
  • 3
    One other thing we need to clarify: I'm not thinking about doing this -- this is a purely theoretical question.
    – MTL
    Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 4:05
  • 2
    sure it is, sure it is Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 4:05
  • 2
    @ClintEastwood what does matter is that smelling marijuana is actually not enjoyable in the slightest. Besides for the fact that it stinks, smelling the plant itself would be almost completely non-psychoactive (unless it was dehydrated sufficiently but even then, I'm not sure) Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 5:26
  • 1
    "Marijuana doesn't smell good, by itself" - you might've been smelling skunkweed...
    – Gary
    Commented Jan 15, 2015 at 6:43

1 Answer 1


As far as I know, your making an incorrect assumption about marijuana.

However, assuming that you're correct in saying that smelling marijuana makes one feel good, then it should have the same rule as smelling 'tabak', a longstanding Jewish custom, which does not require a bracha. The Aruch Hashulchan (216:4) explains that smelling something for an enjoyment that isn't due to the actual smell is not sufficient to make a bracha. This is true even of scented tabak, and therefore presumably true of scented marijuana as well (no matter how it might be inhaled).

  • Do you have anything on this question?
    – MTL
    Commented Jan 20, 2015 at 3:13

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .