When travelers arrived after a long trip, or when there was an emotional issue between people, a hot cup of chocolate was served to the guest so they could speak and connect from the heart. Cacao is a seed used and valued since millenia because of it's tonifying properties. The most important active ingredient is Theobromine (By which the tree was named Theobroma "Food of God"). It acts specially on the cardiovascular system by raising the heart rate and dilating our capillaries and so increasing the blood flow and thus the oxygenation, exchange of nutrients and body temperature. It's also the biggest vegetal source of magnesium and contains big amounts of iron, among other nutrients like polyphenols. It helps create serotonin, giving a sense of wellbeing and joy in a natural and safe way. Even though it's commonly used in a dynamic way (like exercise) to take advantage of the energy it provides, experimenting its effects in an introspective, meditative state allows us to bring that physical energy into the emotional level.
The cacao ceremony has the intention of accompanying the participants through a personal process, one which can be light and ephimeral or profound and transformational. The context creates the experience. It's done in a circle, everyone drinking the same therapeutical dose of pure cacao (the traditional recipe: A little bit of chili for a better absorption of theobromine and optional honey). We focus on the breath and mindstate during the 2 hours that theobromine has the most effect, while a meditation is guided to work on the personal intention. Live music helps to become sensitive and transport us to the inside. That way we can observe what we need to heal, connecting us with nature and our own potential as unique human beings.
Different from other native sacred plant medicines, cacao is not a psychoactive and doesn't push us to an experience, rather it accompanies us in our process opening doorways of feeling and perception in a sutle, loving way.
At the beggining each participant recieves an energetic cleanse with copal and other healing plants. A rapé blowing is offered optionally, which is a traditional medicine preparation made out of tobacco and other ashes of plants and barks. Called the "medicine of presence", it's function, among others, is to free and clean the sinuses and clear the mind. During the ceremony other essences are used to continue cleansing the space. Medicine songs from different traditions are chanted, some in which everyone can join their voice. Through this process, we enter a sensitive conscious state, in which we are available to transform experiences of pain, solitude, abandonment, resentment and what we put our intention into. We can then achieve gratitude and recover power through forgiveness.
Our true essence acts through the purity of love, acceptance and compassion. Cacao reminds us this.
Based on the Mexican Traditional Medicine, different herbs/resin are used to purify the 4 bodies. Rapé (a traditional special preparation of tobacco and other ashes) is offered to prepare the body and mind beforehand. The ceremony is based on ancient ways, integrating modern tools.
Led by Michelle Mayoora (mayooralab.com), we incorporate a healing method called Danzawá, which seeks to liberate the self by finding the own authentic movement and through contact with others in a loving way.
It is adviced not to take stumulants or depressives during the day (alcohol, coffee, tea, tobacco, etc.) at least 24 hours before, and preferably not ingesting food 4 hours before, specially meat or dairy. Bring your intention and comfortable clothes to sit down. If you can, bring a personal tea light/candle. Be well hydrated during the day and after the ceremony.