Cacao ceremony

I want to share my journey of connecting with the Cacao consciousness and how it has affected my life. 

My journey with Cacao started when I came to Peru. I was a complete noob when I did my very first cacao ceremony at home – I didn’t know how to prepare it, I didn’t know what to add, I pretty much made all the mistakes you could possibly make with preparing cacao. I over-boiled it to the point that the cacao mass separated from the oil and floated on top. It was disgusting. I hadn’t added any spices – just some sugar and milk. Nevertheless, I still drunk it. I felt sick after drinking it from the lack of spice and deliciousness. After my first time at home, I started to go to Cacao ceremonies – mainly at a local retreat center in Pisac – where we drank Cacao with intention, and did Kirtan (singing and chanting mantras) for the majority of the ceremony. And that’s when I truly discovered the power of Cacao. 

First of all, I’m not a singer and I usually feel very shy singing in public, but the Cacao really helped me to open my heart and I would feel so grounded in my body. Even my voice would somehow open up. So I was really enjoying it. After some time, I dared to ask the organizer of these ceremonies how he prepared the cacao, and the recipe below is what he answered in response. 

Once I was able to prepare it properly, I started making it more at home and having Cacao ceremonies on Sundays by myself. Early on Sunday mornings, I would drink it on an empty stomach, and have this time for myself to journal, listen to music, sing, play a shamanic drum, meditate (also guided meditations), and connect more with my body. It has been such an amazing and healing journey with Mother Cacao, because in some ways the Cacao would also allow me to feel my emotions more and have less resistance to releasing through crying. I felt more okay to cry with the Cacao supporting me. I felt less resistant to my own emotions. 

Suffice to say, Cacao definitely played a role in my healing journey in this way. While I was writing/journaling, it was simultaneously giving me this clarity in my head and my brain was suddenly super clear. I was more able to have insights and realizations in ways I wouldn’t have been able to, had I not taken the Cacao. Having this clarity helped me to process different situations, and if I had any questions, I could easily get answers with a little bit of meditation. Things would click for me and I would just intuitively know the answers. For me personally, Cacao opens my heart, clears brain fog and even connects me to the Spirit World and my Higher Self. It also makes it more possible to have and get in touch with my psychic abilities. I would say it improves the link to intuition as well. 

Cacao is a powerful medicine. And by cacao, I mean the kind of cacao that’s pure and unchanged, without artificial additives and prepared ceremonially. Note that there’s no such thing as raw cacao – as in it being uncooked! It has to be fermented for it to acquire that taste of bitterness and during that fermentation process, the temperature goes above 48°C, which makes the cacao “cooked”. Most often when you see the word “raw”, what it means is that it is like a raw material, without additives and ready to be used to create whatever you want with it – chocolate bars, cacao drinks, mousses or anything else. I love Cacao. I freaking love Cacao!

Recipe for ceremonial cacao (for 1 person)

You will need: 40-50 g of chopped up pure cacao paste, 1/3 cup of coconut cream and 2/3 cups of water (or 1 cup of coconut milk instead of cream and water), spices of your choice, sweetener of your choice, a pinch of salt.

Mix the cacao with 2/3 cups of water (or milk if you are not using cream) in a small pan, heat it up on low heat. Make sure to constantly stir with a wooden spoon or a whisker. It should melt long before it boils. Switch off the heat and add 1/3 of cup of coconut cream. (If you use coconut milk or other milk just use that instead of water!). Check how hot the mixture is. Let it cool down a bit if needed before putting everything into a blender and blend for 10-20 seconds. You’ll see the mixture becoming very smooth. Pour it back into the pan and heat slowly for over an hour, removing it from the heat if it starts getting too hot. It should never boil! This is the time to make it delicious and this is the time when you communicate with the medicine by putting your intentions as a facilitator into it and asking questions. You can have incense sticks burning as well, playing binaural beats or any favorite music you like with good vibes. This is also the time to draw tarot cards if you want, or write down any downloads and inspiring ideas/visions that come up. This is a very powerful time! To make the cacao delicious, add as much sweetener, cinnamon, cayenne, salt, ginger as you like. Keep tasting the cacao as you continue to add ingredients…. it is a way to communicate with it!

Ceremony 

I recommend fasting for 6-8 hours before the ceremony and having some fruit after 3-4 hours of the start and according to hunger levels after that. The best time to start the ceremony is before noon as to not disrupt the sleep cycle. 

Once the drink is ready, it’s time for a ceremony. Light a candle if you haven’t done so yet. Say a prayer and ask other participants to do so as well. Prayer is simply expressing gratitude to the medicine, the invocation of spirit guides, setting a safe space/container and asking any questions you want to be answered/setting personal intentions for the ceremony. Drink the medicine over the next 30-60 minutes. Making sure to not rush it and savor every sip. Also, make sure to drink a lot of water over the next 2-3 hours (prepare 1-2 liters of water for each participant and gently remind everyone to stay hydrated every 10-15 minutes or so). During the ceremony it’s good to let go of any expectations and go with the flow. It’s an amazing energy to meditate, do a vision quest, do a tarot reading, connect with a body part you want to improve relationship with, draw a vision board, manifest anything that you want in your life, masturbate with intention, hike in nature, create/make art, sing, dance, play instruments, etc. The effects of cacao are usually there for 4-6 hours. Keep drinking water throughout the day. Have a proper meal towards the evening. 

How has your experience with Cacao been?  Are you curious to have a ceremony if you haven’t yet had one? What does the medicine show you in your ceremonies? I’m curious to hear about your journey (or your curiosity!) with Cacao.