How to Create and Facilitate Your Own Cacao Ceremony.

Posted by Shannon Beard on

The following blog post outlines a basic structure for a personal Cacao Ceremony - meaning that this is something you can follow for yourself when you make a cup of Cacao at home.

Firstly I’d like to note that in my opinion there is no ‘right or wrong’ way to construct and conduct a cacao ceremony. Lean on your intuition here and connect with this beautiful and powerful plant medicine in a way that feels aligned to your truth.

The most important element of any cacao ceremony is holding the intention of deepening your relationship to the spirit of Cacao. This is a relationship that will be developed and deepened over time; the more frequently you sit with Cacao and drink it, the deeper your connection will become. It’s important to remember that Ceremonial Grade Cacao is an ancient plant medicine and whilst it may taste similar to a generic hot chocolate, the spiritual and energetic properties of Ceremonial Grade Cacao are wildly different to store-bought cacao powder. Read more about this here.

Below is a structure that I generally recommend as it involves steps that honour the plant medicine, its history and the ancestors of Cacao. I also believe that this ceremony structure provides you with the ability to establish a moment of peace and connection; no matter where you are or how you're feeling. 

1. Set a sacred space:
Follow your intuition here (you’ll hear me say this a lot!) and set up a sacred space that feels beautiful to you. You can use candles, dim the lighting, light some incense, diffuse some oils - whatever feels sacred to you.

There are many practices that partner well with Cacao that you can incorporate into a cacao ceremony such as tarot / oracle cards, journaling, breath-work, nature walks, painting, dancing, chanting and meditation. Again, use your intuition here as you’ll find that this changes over time.

2. Open with a statement of gratitude, a prayer or a blessing:
Begin by expressing your gratitude for all that you experience in life and for this moment of ritual you are experiencing with Cacao. Also offer your blessings to Cacao, the families and farmers who have provided it, the Mayan ancestors, Mother Earth and anyone else you’d like to express gratitude for.

3. Set an intention:
If you’ve ever attended one of my group or private cacao ceremonies, you would’ve heard me express the importance of setting an intention before consuming your cup of Cacao. There is no right or wrong here but just know that there is absolutely no rush; the more specific you are with your intention, the better. The longer you take to allow your intention to find you (an expression I like to use as the moment you allow your intuition and heart to land on an intention, rather than trying to use your mind), the more enhanced the outcome will be.

If you’ve never done this before I encourage you to sit, close your eyes, hold the cup of Cacao up to your heart and take some deep breaths. Ask yourself what brought you to this moment; what inclination did you feel to sit with Cacao and how do you desire to feel after your personal cacao ceremony? Focusing on how you’d like to feel is always a great place to start.

You can set one intention or you can set a few - it doesn’t matter. The important thing here is to go slow, take your time and be intentional. Experience your senses by connecting with your breath and the luscious smell of Cacao; there’s no rush to take your first sip, make your experience as potent as possible!

4. Open your heart to Cacao:
As mentioned above, Ceremonial Grade Cacao is considered a plant medicine (with no psychedelic effects) and therefore has a spirit of its own. It’s a spirit with a feminine energy (yin, soft, nurturing, creative, inward, loving) and works in a subtle but potent manner and whilst Cacao is considered a plant medicine, it isn’t a psychedelic but it does have neurocognitive effects that enhance your mood, focus and creativity. In order to experience these beautiful effects of Cacao, it’s important to open your heart and let her spirit in; I have always referred to Cacao as a medicine of the heart.

If you open your heart to Cacao, she will remove anything that is preventing you from living from your heart space. Emotions or joy may arise and after you’ve finished your cup of Cacao, you may notice that you feel more connected to yourself and / or to those around you (it can be beautiful to share a cup with a loved one).

To invite Cacao into your heart, you can state something similar to “Spirit of Cacao, I welcome you into my heart”, followed by your intention. Envision this like talking to a trusted friend, get vulnerable if you need to and know that you will always be held, guided and protected. 

5. Hold space:
Once you have finished your cup of Cacao, hold space for yourself in whatever way that looks. Each ceremony that you engage in will be different and therefore will invoke different sensations, feelings and emotions each time.

By holding space, I mean allowing yourself to truly bask in the experience of your personal cacao ceremony; allow any emotions, ideas and feelings to work through you and be physically, emotionally and spiritually present with yourself and your experience. I believe that the “effects” of Ceremonial Grade Cacao enter our bloodstream around 30 mins - 1 hour after we’ve consumed it. Enjoy this experience and as much as possible, release any self-judgement and criticism - give yourself permission to truly enjoy this experience.

A daily cacao ceremony is a very powerful way to connect with your true self - the deeper you surrender, the more potent your experience will be.

To experience the potency of our Ceremonial Grade Cacao, please click here.
Enjoy the magic x x

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