More coming soon. If you have any questions, please email us so we can share the answers here.
How did you get into Chocolate Yoga™?
Actually it’s quite a funny, accidental story. My husband and I were planning to go to England to live for a while, but I was literally refused entry at Heathrow Immigration for not having the right visa. (It’s a long story, but in a nutshell my husband’s from the UK originally and was travelling on his British passport, while I was on my Aussie passport. At immigration, he innocently mentioned we were looking into the possibility of settling there, so they refused to give me the standard tourist visa and wouldn’t let me come in without a settlement visa). Having all our plans shattered in an instant, we weren’t quite ready to head back to Australia so soon, with our tail between our legs, so we thought where to next….? On a whim we decided Guatemala. Why not? We had both separately visited there ten years prior and stayed in the same small village as each other, within the same month or two, without actually having met. We’d often joked about going back there together some day. So when I was refused entry and we didn’t have the heart to go home, we thought, why not?
While we were in Guatemala we met Keith the “Chocolate Shaman” who we spent many mornings with, on his front porch, drinking Cacao and doing ‘Chocolate Ceremonies’. Although he is not a traditional Mayan Shaman, he’s not even Guatemalan, after working with him extensively and experiencing his profound wisdom and deep understanding of the Cacao, we used to joke that for a ‘gringo’ to know so much about the medicine and magic of Cacao he must be a reincarnated Mayan elder!
At the time of working with the Chocolate Shaman we were renting a house on the Lago de Atitlan & I was teaching yoga in the afternoons, at a local hostel. It was at Keith, the Chocolate Shaman’s, bidding that I tried my first Chocolate Yoga class. He’d been insisting how well the cacao works with creative and meditation practices, how it enhances the experience etc. Finally I tried it myself and loved it. But I still wasn’t too sure how other people would like it, so I tried it with my husband and he also loved it. Ok so finally I thought, what could go wrong? What’s the harm in trying it for 1 class? So I put a flyer up and it was the biggest yoga class I had the whole time I was there! The yoga shala was full; we were bursting out the sides. The response was overwhelmingly positive and encouraging.
Before running them in Australia, we had the ultimate opportunity to trial our ceremonial Cacao on an Aussie audience – at our wedding! We brought back as much ceremonial cacao as we could, and served the cacao to 85 people as a “Love Potion” at our ‘Big Day of Love’ and it was a hit all round.
So finally, we started running Chocolate Yoga™ classes here in Byron Bay and the response has again been incredibly encouraging. People are lapping them up and asking for more! Each class has doubled in size and now we are looking for a bigger venue…
What’s the difference between regular chocolate and “Ceremonial Grade Cacao/Chocolate”?
A lot! In our experience we’ve found there’s a huge irreconcilable difference between the two.
With every class being a journey, the difference when using regular chocolate (even the best organic, 70-80% cacao variety) is like going on a journey in economy class, knowing that your plane has a broken engine; the ride is rough, you’re adrenalin is going crazy and you know you will crash land – There’s no room for bliss in that! Compared to the journey with Ceremonial Cacao; which gives you the silky smooth experience of your own private jet plane direct to the yummiest destination!
Unfortunately the regular chocolate, even the expensive ‘quality’ chocolate you buy from supermarkets has very little, if any, of the medicinal properties left. The processing of cacao into chocolate blocks, (particularly the adding of dairy & refined sugars) seriously impairs all health & spiritual benefits.
How do you take the cacao?
For traditional Cacao Ceremonies, the Ancient Mayans never had their cacao raw. They used to drink the ground cacao in water as a Hot Chocolate (Pure Cacao Liquor). To this they added chilli (the spiritual accelerator) and vanilla, and sweetened it with Pamella (organic evaporated sugar cane juice). We serve this same medicinal drink that they used in ceremony and as offerings to the Gods. We recommend you experience the cacao the way the Ancient Mayans did. However if you are attending a workshop with us and would like yours without any natural sweetener or chilli added please let us know, we can put some aside for you, without it.
How much cacao do you recommend taking at home and how often?
There are no hard and fast rules, as every body is different, with their own sensitivities. Yes cacao is a potent superfood, so we think we should have loads of it, but at the same time it’s a powerful stimulant. So it may be useful to be slightly more cautious while you are first getting to know the cacao spirit. It’s like any new relationship, it makes sense to go slow at first. In those early days of getting to know one another, you want to test out how well you get along and get a sense for how much intimacy you can handle… Similarly with cacao, you want to check how sensitive you are to it’s stimulating effects. So enjoy the cacao, but no more than a yoga dose (just under 1.2 ounces), once or twice a week. Anything above this dosage level, we recommend you only work with a facilitator. If you are taking cacao in much smaller doses than it may feel fine for you to take it every other day.