Cacao Ceremony Time Guide
6:30pm Arrive and find your space
7:00pm Call in the Directions
Cacao Ceremony with Guided Meditation
Drum and Dance
8:30pm Regroup and Reconnect
9:00pm Closing Circle
Enjoy each other's company and food offerings.
10:30pm Good night, y'all.
Weather permitting, this will be an outdoor event set around the fire.
What to bring:
• 2 litre bottle for drinking water and a personal mug for liquid cacao
• Paper plates etc will be provided, though we encourage you to bring your own plate and spork
• Wear soft, comfortable, layered clothing which allows you to move (leggings, soft trousers, etc)
• Meditation cushion, zafu, folding chair if sitting on the floor/ground is uncomfortable
• Pillow and blanket for comfort during inner journey work + resting (optional)
• Any significant personal item(s) that you’d like to place on the group altar (returnable!)
• Drums, flutes, rattles and shakers, and any other musical contribution you are willing to make to the evening
• A snack to contribute (vegetarian please and easy to serve)
• Your openness and willingness to connect authentically and honestly with your Self and the non-linear, spontaneous wisdom of the Cacao Deva.
Flavor Enhancements Include:
cayenne, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, raw honey, maple syrup, pink salt, coconut milk
We will provide some of these. If you want any in particular, please mention that in the comments.
To learn more about cacao and how to prepare yourself for the ceremony, read on:
During a sacred cacao ceremony, you will be invited to let go of what is not serving your life, to call in what you would like to manifest for personal growth, and to deeply open your full capacity for love. A cacao ceremony is an opportunity to connect to yourself and open your heart, literally and figuratively. Cacao aids in any transformational shift, whether you are looking to deepen your understanding of your unique purpose, release old patterns and past traumas, move into a more self-assured awareness, and awaken a sense of wonderment and joy. Whatever your path, the intention is yours to cultivate. The cacao enhances your intuitive insight and conscious awareness, thus moving you closer to your goals. Sound healing and meditation are tools we use to support your process. Together, we are committed to creating a kind atmosphere of sharing. We climax our experience with drumming and dance, during which the cacao activates within the body and the chakras, allowing a truly transformative and ecstatic process to unfold. Before we close the circle, we offer a chance to share anything that wants a voice through our experience. Then, we eat our shared meal, exchange contact information with new friends, and have ourselves a good night's rest.
The body-mind can become flooded with the many emotions stored in the heart, some of which can be painful. It is not always an easy experience. I have seen many tears shed as people peel away old layers of hurt. It is not only okay to cry, it is CELEBRATED. Tears are healing. A wise native once said, "The tears of the body are the blood of the earth." When you heal yourself, you give others permission to heal. When humanity heals, the earth heals. As the cacao facilitates a deep sense of self-love, tears are followed by smiles of deep gratitude. Flow with it.
There is a two-week period following a fire ceremony in which “instances of opportunity” appear. These instances provide the opportunity to translate your intent for healing into reality. You are advised to think of the ceremony not as an instantaneous magical change, but rather an opening for healing distinctive habits and patterns. Recognize this opening and seize the opportunity to change your behavior in the real world. Let the universe take care of the details; listen for the signals and follow your inner guidance.
Post-cacao residuals can be noticed a myriad of powerful and subtle ways. Enhanced dreaming, physical detoxification and purging, and random emotional releases, are some signs you are working through energetic blockages. It is possible to support this process by being kind with yourself. Nourishing the body through whole foods nutrition, meditation and rest, practicing embodied movement, spending time in nature and silence, bathing in Epsom salt, and receiving bodywork can be helpful tools to move through the discomfort. Very occasionally, there may be an experience of headache or nausea, which energetically is an indicator of resistance. For discomfort lasting more than a day, you are welcome to contact any of your facilitators for support.
Cacao was known as the food of the Gods by the ancient peoples of Mexico, Central, and South America. It was prized as being of more value than gold and was traded as currency. Kings used it to enhance their libido so they could satisfy their harems. In common practice, it was known to activate sources of love and energy within body and mind, leading to its aphrodisiac status. Signifying both life and fertility, it was ingested by royalty in ceremonial deity worship and in sacrificial ritual. This sought-after plant medicine has had it’s beneficial effects altered and diminished through cooking and processing with sugar and milk, turning it into what we know as "chocolate". When cacao is prepared in it’s raw form and imbibed in sacred ceremony, we can experience the full benefit of this miraculous “Food of the Gods.”
One of the main active ingredients is Theobromine. Theo-broma literally translates as God-Food, and potentiates the release of dopamine, the "pleasure hormone". This, alongside phenethylamine, which is known to help relieve stress and depression and is released in the body during emotional euphoria, creates a heightened sensation of connectivity and empathy. The high amount of nutrients in the cacao support detoxification of the liver, spleen, and kidneys.
A quote from Drugs.com: “N-acylethanolamines are compounds found in chocolate that are structurally similar to anandamine, which is similar to the cannabinoid responsible for euphoria from cannabis. These compounds may not exert their effect by binding with the tetrahydrocannabinol receptors, but by inhibiting breakdown of endogenously produced anandamine, thus prolonging a “natural high.”
You may feel it providing extra circulation to the body within 30 minutes of ingestion. As the brain receives more oxygen, you feel the buzz of its activity. Those with an empty stomach will notice a more rapid assimilation, so if you are ready for that level of medicine, eat a good sized lunch and fast for 6-8 hours before the ceremony. First-timers are encouraged to have a light vegetable-based snack around 3:30-4pm, or 2-3 hours before partaking. Noticeable effects of cacao typically last 4-5 hours. Costa Rican, or Central American, cacao has less caffeine than South American varieties. It is ideal for inner work, lucid dreaming, and shamanic journeys. Whereas the South American varieties are often used in a similar manner to the way North Americans use coffee. To be certain you get adequate sleep, drink more water than your usual habit.
Please avoid all caffeine, alcohol, sugar stimulants, and bovine dairy products on the day, or at least 5 hours prior to event, as they do not mix well with cacao.
The theobromine in cacao is diuretic. Again, drink as much water as you can manage. This will help you avoid physically induced headaches and nausea. Those who need dietetic detox, especially if undergoing chemotherapy, may become nauseous 5-6 hours after a large dose, as the bitters stimulate the liver. Lower doses may also be needed for people with lower body weight or those who regard themselves as sensitive to drugs or energies. Note: many antidepressants do NOT mix with the tryptophan and MAO (Monoamine Oxidase) inhibitors in cacao. Research your medication before partaking. Cacao is a vasodilator, opening blood vessels, increasing their flow, and reducing blood pressure. If you get migraines from coffee, you may experience that effect from cacao, but it is not likely with the Costa Rican variety. A larger or full ceremonial amount of cacao combined with intense aerobic activity or a high-heat hot spring/ tub/ sweat/ sauna could make anyone nauseous.
Although cacao is classed as a stimulant, many find they go deeper and quieter into meditation and contemplation with the help of cacao. Same for most babies through the breastmilk. The variety we are using, lower in caffeine, is considered safe for pregnant women and for small children. The dosage should be based on their body weight.
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