While I was travelling in Costa Rica I was lucky enough to meet a wonderful family who were sharing organic, unroasted cacao with beautiful heart intention. Cacao Magic Costa Rica invited me to live with them while I completed an apprenticeship in cacao. During this time, I established a deep connection with myself and the spirit of cacao and knew I was destined to share this wonderful plant medicine with others. Noa supported me on a fascinating journey to find my soul purpose with cacao, EMF balancing technique and kinesiology.
Aligning with my soul purpose “To create a healing space for people on their journey. I facilitate education on nutrition and health and help people still their minds while providing food, cacao, music, and movement”
“What you love is a sign from your higher self of what you are to do.” Sanaya Roman
On my travels coming home from Costa Rica I attended 2 movement retreats, one in Danyasa Eco Retreat led by the amazing dance and movement therapist Aliza Rivka and the other one at The Phoenix Retreat with The School of Movement Medicine, which is a shamanic journey designed to catalyse you into a new level of awareness, enabling you to assume responsibility for and commitment to living your life in alignment with your deepest purpose.
“When you dance, you can enjoy the luxury of being you.” Paulo Coelho
What is Cacao?
Cacao is native to tropical America, an evergreen species growing in the lower belts of the rainforest. It dates back to the Mayans and Aztecs. Cacao was so precious to them. To have cacao beans in your pocket was like having a wallet full of cash. The beans grow in beautiful pods cushioned by a delicious sweet white fruit pulp. The wonderful unroasted organic cacao I serve is made by a cooperative of indigenous Bri-Bri women in the Talamanca Mountains of Costa Rica. Most cacao is commercially used to make chocolate, although unfortunately most of its benefits are lost with the high temperatures and the processing it undergoes to make the chocolate. Because the Cacao Magic Costa Rica is 100% pure cacao and in its most original and natural form, we can reap all the benefits cacao has to offer.
Cacao boasts 700 compounds known to us. Not only does it boast a very high nutrient content it also triggers the body to release neurotransmitters which can help us to open our hearts to feel more love and a sense of euphoria. It has life enhancing and disease preventing properties. Of all foods in the world, cacao has the highest levels of antioxidants. Cacao also helps to lower blood pressure and inflammation in the body, thus helping to protect the body from cardiovascular disease and many others. There are many more benefits, but the last one I will mention is the ability of cacao to increase the flow of oxygen to the brain by 30-40%, thus supporting cognitive activity and lucidity.
What to expect at a cacao ceremony?
True creation is not the modern world, true creation is what lives and grows around us in nature. When we open up to receive the gifts of the cacao spirit it allows us to see and feel the world differently. It helps to open our hearts and lets us remember that we are unique, divine, and full of joy and shows us how to have unconditional love for ourselves and others. It helps us feel free to expand our creativity and self-expression and connects us to ourselves and any activity we choose to go deep with. Cacao is a subtle yet powerful plant medicine. It creates bounding inspiration inside and many have huge life realisations at cacao ceremonies. Some people may report not feeling much at all. Cacao will help you to the door, but it is then up to you to walk through that door.
While in Costa Rica I was granted an incredible amount of inspiration while attending many different cacao ceremonies. I enjoyed ceremonies paired with ecstatic dance, music improvisation, singing circles, nature walks, meditation, sound therapy and art therapy. At the moment I am focusing on music, dance and meditation. Dancing has always been an amazing tool for me to jump out of my thinking mind, let go with the music and move the body in any way that feels good. The work I have done with Movement Medicine has given me a new connection to dance, like never before. As the cacao helps with creativity and self-expression, dance is such a powerful pairing. I always begin and end with a meditation to help us to drop into the heart space, and let go of the chatter we all have from our busy lives. My aim is to relax people to a state where they can reduce their stress levels and feel more love and gratitude for themselves, others and life.
About the Author
Author: Nicky Halliday
Nicky grew up in Dublin. Her father helped spark her interest in cooking with his creative skills in the kitchen. She went on to study Culinary Arts in a holistic nutrition school in California. This professional training focused on cooking delicious nourishing food for optimum health. As Nicky is also a qualified nutritional therapist with the Irish Institute of Nutrition and Health, she dedicates her time to preparing dishes that can be adapted to everybody’s health requirements. Her food is not only bursting with nutrients, it tastes delicious too. Nicky started the fresh food deli in The Hopsack Health Store and worked as the head chef there for 3.5 years.
Since then she decided to go on an adventure to Central America where she has gained so much experience working as head chef at Farm of Life healing retreat centre in Costa Rica. Nicky learned a new way to live & heal, connecting to nature and practising meditation. She experienced wonderful openings working with plant medicine, including cacao. As she has spent many years DJing in Dublin, she naturally took a big interest in cacao ceremonies with chakra dancing. She believes this is a powerful tool to help open the heart and still the mind aided by cacao, music and movement.
Nicky has held successful workshops & retreats around Ireland and loves to share her knowledge with people. Her creative energy, passion for her work & her heart intention shines through to create beautiful gatherings for people to enjoy and leave bursting with inspiration.
My next cacao ceremony will be 7 Sept 2019 in The Chapel of Ease, Irishtown, Dublin 4. We will be celebrating life with a gratitude dance. I will have more information on this shortly. If you are interested in booking in, drop a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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I will also be hosting a Irish food and culture retreat in October with cacao included 😊