Whoever decided to post this story at JTA must have been smokin’ something hoochy:
Benny Shanon, a 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.
Apparently, it occured to Shanon while under the influence of, um, a psychotropic desert flora that there are lots of stories about life-changing plants in the Bible – The Tree of Life, the fruit on the Tree of Knowledge (which you know tasted nasty and gave Eve a wicked hangover) and that crazyass bush that talked to Moses. “It seems logical that something was altered in people’s consciousness.”
Shanon figures his drug theory is at least as feasible than the traditional explanation that indeed the Israelites communicated with God. (And if they’re really good ‘shrooms, they can both be true at the same time!)