London, Mar 5 (UNI) Moses was hallucinating under the influence of a mind-altering drug at the time of his biblical achievements, a top Israeli academic has said.
Psychology professor of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Benny Shanon, said, ''It was likely Moses was hallucinating when he received the Ten Commandments.'' The professor, who came up with his theory after experiencing firsthand the effects of a hallucinogenic brew used in religious rituals in Brazil, said the story of Moses and the burning bush had the hallmarks of a psychedelic experience.
He said the acacia tree, mentioned in the Bible, contains one of the most psychedelic substances known to man.
According to the professor, the account in the Book of Exodus of the bush's ability to burn without being ''consumed'', which is generally attributed to the presence and power of God, is evidence of the power of drugs, the Daily Mail reported.
Writing in the journal Time And Mind, he said the telltale signs of drug-induced visions included a loss of sense of time, seeing bright lights or fire, the blurring of the senses and profound religious and spiritual feelings.
According to the professor, the assembled Children of Israel were likely to have been in ''an altered state of awareness'' when Moses brought the Ten Commandments down from Mount Sinai.
He said, ''As far as Moses on Mount Sinai is concerned, it was either a supernatural cosmic event, which I don't believe, or a legend, which I don't believe either, or finally, and probable, an event that joined Moses and the people of Israel under the effect of narcotics.'' UNI XC SKB ND1542