Last year in August 2018 I went on a little shamanic retreat to Avebury with Brooke Medicine Eagle, Genevieve Boast & Rebekah Shaman, these 3 awesome Medicine women introduced me to a plant teacher and healer called Theobroma cacao – yes you may have heard of it! It is essentially chocolate in its raw form. You have taken it yourself many times. You will have experienced a mild euphoria perhaps from ingesting it, alongside other ingredients such as sugar, vanilla, milk – mmmm yummy! But these ingredients negate its medicinal qualities, as you will notice when taking it in its pure ceremonial form.
The 3 medicine women held a cacao ceremony, giving us an experience called a shamanic journey, a type of vision quest, a kind of deep meditation that takes you into a spiritual state to commune with the beings that we don’t normally speak to – like plant spirits, the stone people, the sun and the moon. Everything has consciousness in shamanic philosophy, its all just about connecting and opening your heart and mind to hear their voice in whatever way they can commune with us. We can use this altered state of consciousness like hypnosis to heal, to answer questions on a subconscious level, to transform, to connect and sometimes if you are really ready to become enlightened and experience the oneness of the universe that the gurus speak of so highly!
During this shamanic journey we drank a large bowl of Ceremonial Cacao, I couldn’t finish mine it was so big! But I did my best, then we were advised to lie down, relax and the 3 medicine women held space for us, drumming, rattling, softly singing to us, healing us. I closed my eyes and started to dream my shamanic vision. I disappeared down the rabbit hole, a little like Alice in Wonderland, I came out the other side into a landscape I have been to many times before as I have been journeying into spirit for 20 years, I know my way a little more clearly now. Waiting for me there was Mama Cacao, appearing as a beautiful wisp of purple smoke, kind of like you might imagine a genie as it leaves a magic lamp. She danced with me, she worked her way inside of me, she melted away my muscle tension like a dose of opiates. I have since learnt the Cacao causes the body to release endorphins and enkephalins into the blood, which are 500 times stronger than morphine! She opened my heart, I felt a few feelings of suppressed raw grief and sadness rise up from my heart, leave as tears from my eyes, fall back to the earth and be absorbed by the great mother earth goddess beneath me. Cacao also aids the release of Oxytocin – the bliss, love and connection hormone we feel at orgasm, or more simply hugging someone we love or when stroking a pet! Mama cacao and I danced for a long time together that day and we have been dancing together every day since.
For about a year before this ceremonial transformation I had been asking my spirit guides how I can combine my herbal medicine and my shamanism. I had begun to develop the plant spirit medicine teachings I had received into a workshop I could share. During this Cacao ceremony I realised I now had a new path – as a Cacaoista – to share this magical medicine and Cacao ceremony with as many of my human family as I could. Because this was the combination of shaman and plant healing I wanted to experience and I wanted to share!
For the past 20 years I have noticed we all have something in common – our pain is caused in may respects by a perceived lack of love, we are too often expecting other broken humans to fill us up with love, and we don’t know how to love ourselves either! Mama Cacao is perfect for our present situation, she gently opens the heart chakra to aid the receiving and giving of love. She allows us to grieve, release emotional pain, making room for the bliss and love vibration that is also available to us. Cacao can assist us to open up to be more kind, caring, considerate to others, yet also more self-loving. In my own heart I feel it has been healing the holes in my heart left over from childhood abuse, trauma and neglect. Once I felt I a little empty all the time. Now after 6 months of Cacao ceremony and sharing this amazing gift I feel like a fountain of love!
I believe I have been chosen by Mama cacao for this role as Cacaoista because of my experience with plant spirit medicine. And with the permission and guidance of my 3 medicine women mentors I have been running cacao ceremonies for over 6 months. We now hold them every New Moon at the chamomile clinic for groups of 10. I invite you to come to a ceremony and see for yourself what this amazing teacher plant has to offer you, which in my experience is visions, healing and love in abundance! I will not tell you want to see, just where to look. Have you ever wondered what Mother Earth would say to you if she could talk? Well she can – you just need to learn to rest and be open to listen in her language of symbols and stories, energy and vision.
So now comes the second part of the vision – I wish to collaborate with other visionaries, artists, writers, poets, film makers, chefs, potters, actors, dancers, creators, makers of all kinds! I want to share the messages of Mother earth and mama cacao with the world.
This vision, I need you to help me with, I am calling “Visions from Mama Cacao and the Earth Goddess”.
So far the concept is simple, we have invited a group of my friends and neighbours – Margate artists, visionaries, creators and makers go on a vision quest together, using the Cacao ceremony as our sacred vessel to receive visions from mother earth and mama cacao. Then to share these visions with the world, first as a local art exhibition, and journey with it much further if we want to.
This cacao inspired exhibition will be shown at Summer Solstice. I have Urchins as our space to exhibit already organised. I have 3 dates for a Cacao ceremony over Spring Equinox to invite artists to.
So in a little more detail…the plan is – we go on a shamanic vision quest together, we use the Cacao ceremony to awaken our connection to the spirit of the Earth – The Great Earth Goddess. Mama Cacao to be our spirit guide. I will be shaman – holding space, opening the door to the spirit world for you to pass safely there and home again – bringing back visions, vibrations, and messages from the Earth to share with others through the medium of art, dance, music, film, photography, food, whatever excites you most!
Mama Cacao not only brings strong visions, she connects us, she opens our Hearts and minds, nourishes our womb centre (often called the dan tien in men), and brings a rush of gorgeous hormones such as oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine that make us feel seriously good, with no hangover at all! I have been running ceremonies for 6 months now and it just gets better!
I have been sharing this idea to a select few and have much support already, I hope that you have the time and desire to join in this idea. As I said earlier, I have booked an exhibition space for Summer Solstice at Urchins. In 4 weeks time, it will be spring equinox and the full moon – so on the 21st & 22nd of march I will be running 3 cacao ceremonies for free – and wish to invite you to join in on one of them.
The first is on 21st at 10am-1pm, the 2nd at 1pm-4pm. The last session will be the 22nd – Friday night 7pm – 10pm.
The exhibition dates are: 27th June to 10th July. Separately but intrinsically linked I will also be running a large event on solstice itself on the beach – with gong and an all night drumming vision quest and Earth healing ceremony – feel free to join us for that too!
I have no desire to extract money from this project – the work is yours, and I am providing all my shamanic skills and the Cacao for free for the purpose of creating this exhibition. I would of course appreciate the visions you manifest to be present at the exhibition space for Solstice.
Link to Cacao Ceremony on my website for more info’ about the Cacao and Ceremony:
So if you are a local or just very excited about this project, and artist or maker, please give me a call/text or email to discuss this anytime. I will get us organised for a really awesome Cacao ceremony you will want to share with the world!
Cacao Cuddles, Sorrell Robbins