Learning How to Love Chocolate (continued)

The first part of this story is about my realization that chocolate really isn’t so bad. For as long as I can remember I didn’t like chocolate. But things are starting to change. Read Part 1 here.

The second cacao ceremony was a complete heart-opener.

Before the ceremony started, I was having a great day at the Mystical Yoga Farm, the spiritual community in Guatemala where I spent the winter. I woke up and stayed in bed to write myself a love poem (read that here). Then I fasted for the ceremony. Fasting is supposed to intensify the experience.

Cacao, or chocolate before it’s processed, has been used ceremonially for centuries in Latin America.

In its purest form cacao comes in beans and is very bitter. For the ceremony each person drank 1.5 ounces of cacao. The cacao is added to water to create a drink. In the United States this drink would be similar to a hot chocolate but with unprocessed cacao.

Since there were only seven of us in the second ceremony, the ceremony was more personal. Keith, the cacao shaman, spent more one-on-one time with everyone.

The ceremony was once again held in Jaguar Hall, a building with floor to ceiling glass windows that overlooks Lake Atitlan and some volcanoes.

Inside of Jaguar Hall Cacao Ceremony 2

Inside of Jaguar Hall Cacao Ceremony 2

Preparing our cacao

Preparing our cacao

Adding sugar and spice

Adding sugar and spice

Before I gulped the last bit of my cacao, I held the cup with both hands and asked the cacao spirit to show me what I need to see, to teach me what is right for me right now and to help me understand the love and partner I’ve been trying to manifest into my life.

I finished the cacao, and I could barely sit still. I kept swaying and reaching for my notebook to write everything down. As I was doing this, I realized how often I’m pulled out of the moment to try to capture the moment. As much as I try to be present, my need to capture everything distracts me. I often write because I want to share my experiences with others.

“What is it inside of me that longs for this connection with others so deeply,” I asked myself as I was realizing all this. Then my thoughts started cycling to the perfect romantic love, something that’s been on my mind for many months. Around this time Keith came up to me and read my mind. I told him how my body was buzzing and how I couldn’t relax.

“I bet you like plants, don’t you. You’re interested in the garden,” he said. I told him how I’m interested in different ways plants interact with each other, how much soil and sunlight they need, what their medicinal properties are, etc.

He said something like, “Why are you disguising this connection with plants for your need for connection with humans? I bet you’re the kind of person who makes lists. And then you create lists within those lists. You’ve spent so much time creating ideas that you’ve forgotten to follow what you feel. You’re trying to manifest a boyfriend. Look at him. Look at every piece of him and pretend he’s your boyfriend. Think about how that makes you feel.” Keith pointed to Christian, and we all couldn’t help but laugh. Christian and I are always playing and being silly together. The girl volunteers have joked to me, “You’d think you two have been dating for years.”

At this point in the ceremony I was also crying. Keith had brought up the way I’ve taken in people’s pain throughout the years and how this has made me strong, but has prevented me from living through feeling. Keith asked me where I felt the energy in my body moving. I felt surges in my fingertips and put my hands over my heart.

“This girl is a healer. She knows it, but she’s just not sure what to do with it yet,” he said about me. And then looking at me he said, “Do you want to spend your life making lists or have lightning bulbs come out of your fingers?” “Lightning bolts!” I giggled through tears.

Then Keith moved on to Yashua, the man sitting next to me. Keith talked to Yashua about his life, and Yashua started to cry. Keith beckoned for me to move closer. Then he pointed at Yashua like I already knew what to do. With both my hands I clasped Yashua’s right hand. I sat with him as he cried and expressed his pain. I felt how deeply he feels things, how powerful of a being he is, how he is an angel. It was a very powerful experience. I’m not even sure how to explain it, but it’s something I’ll never forget. It was my first time intentionally acknowledging and realizing healing work I was a part of.

The whole experience was a very heart-opening, beautiful, bonding experience to engage in with the other Karma Yogi’s. After the ceremony we all had so much energy and just wanted to play. We were completely blissed out. We did some acro yoga and had a dance party in the grass for hours.

Sometimes I didn't want to let go of Christian...

Sometimes I didn’t want to let go of Christian…

Yay! Fun!

Yay! Fun!

Before we started to play Christian held out a deck of Tarot Cards: Healing With The Angels Oracle Cards by Doreen Virtue.

I hugged Christian as he read the card I picked,

“Signs: Pay careful attention to the messages the angels give you now. You have asked for a sign and they deliver it. Notice and trust these signs. You’ve asked for heaven to help you. Now it’s up to you to pay attention to the evidence of their help. This card signifies that your angels are trying to get your attention with signs. They might ask a butterfly or bird to fly near you. Or they might compel you to hear a song several times. They might put an object in your path so that you have to notice it. Drawing this card is also a sign from your angels. They are trying to get through – please notice! You can ask your angels to give you a sign whenever you have a question or a decision to make. Usually it’s not a good idea to specify what type of sign you’d like. Leave that up to the angels. They are very good at making their presence known.”

All the other Karma Yogi’s picked the same card. Sweet synchronicity kept on flowing.

Later that night we had a letting go ceremony around the fire.

“I’m letting go of associating love with pain,” I said as I threw in an offering to the fire. During the cacao ceremony I realized how often in romantic relationships I’ve fallen for abusers whom I’ve tried to save. I realized certain patterns I’ve associated with love from the love that’s been given and taken from me my whole life. I realized that I want to break free from all those associations and let feeling guide me. I want to be the love that I want in my life.

After the fire ceremony I crawled into bed fuzzy with warmth and happiness from the day. As I fell asleep I heard people still singing around the fire, “Oh darling, darling, stand by me” and then, “Don’t worry about a thing because every little thing is gonna be all right.” I fell asleep with a huge smile on my face.

If you’re interested in participating in a cacao ceremony check out Keith’s website. He hosts ceremonies in Guatemala and travels the world to host ceremonies. You can also purchase cacao on Keith’s website. Before I left Guatemala I bought five pounds of cacao. I guess you can say I learned to love chocolate.

It was hard not to smile when I was around these folks daily.

Post Cacao Ceremony: It was hard not to smile when I was around these folks daily.

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One thought on “Learning How to Love Chocolate (continued)

  1. Love it – keep writing my lovely daughter!

    April – you have a gr8 way with words! Feelings thru words – I love it!

    Luv, Dad

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