Posts Tagged Chocolate Shaman

Sacred Cacao Ceremony

Sacred Cacao Ceremony. An invitation to tend to your sacred heart.

Sacred Cacao Ceremony

I’ve just come from guiding a sacred cacao ceremony. I playfully call it the Chocolate Temple Journey.  It was an intimate gathering.  Each individual came for their own personal reason. We each sat, sipping a cup of warm, rich chocolate made with sacred cacao from Guatemala. We shared what called us to explore our inner landscape during this particular gathering. And then, each of us gently opened ourselves to the see what aspect of life wanted to join our collective playtime for the evening.

Chocolate Temple Journal, reflections on sacred cacao and the inner templeCT Blog Line Page SeparatorThis Chocolate Temple Journal is a collection of my personal reflections on sacred cacao and the inner sanctuary of Self and Source.  I share some of my thoughts here to give you an idea of where the spirit of cacao can take us when we invite it to partner with us on a journey of self-inquire and self-discovery.

Excerpts from the Chocolate Temple Journal

The chocolate elixir was especially creamy tonight…and the cayenne pepper gave it a good kick! I remember thinking that it was as rich and silky as the deep ah-ha’s the group shared with me.  I remember thinking the circle of my cup felt like a tiny representation of the Universe…the Universe I live in and the Universe that exists inside of me.

Sacred Cacao Ceremony with Rachel Payne of Creativity Tribe

Big ideas often come after drinking cacao, and this sacred cacao ceremony was no different.

I felt clumsy in the beginning.  But in all actuality, that was perfect.  The group was small, made up half of cacao ceremony regulars and half of those new to the plant and the process.

I could sense excitement and a bit of discomfort in the group.  I think the discomfort was simply coming from walking into a new experience.  Even those who had come many times to sit with cacao had never come to a group soley guided by me.  I spontaneously found myself talking about this place we found ourselves in….this Unknowing. I felt Spirit guiding my sharing.

I dove in….

I confessed to feeling clumsy.  I confessed to feeling starkly aware that we were all moving into uncharted territory….especially those of us who were used to drinking cacao together for years in a circle guided by another who we all respected dearly and had gotten into a comfortable groove with.  I confessed to feeling nervous about showing off my own personal groove.

I felt naked….but calling myself out, transparently claiming my vulnerability felt empowering.  I laughed and boldly stated that my intention for the night was to lean into my experience and courageously be as clumsy and awkward as I needed to do what I felt guided to do for the group.

They all laughed with me.  I gave myself permission to showed up flawed and authentic, and as I did, I felt the group shift.  They leaned into the Mystery of the evening with me.

And the Mystery was beautiful.

Sacred Cacao CeremonySacred Cacao Ceremony

Would you like to join me for a cup of Sacred Cacao?  Would you like to explore the Chocolate Temple…that space where Self and Sacred meet?

Let’s craft a sacred cacao ceremony together.  I am happy to work one-on-one and in small groups.  This can be a powerful way to connect with your spiritual self and dive into creativity.  Simply contact me for details.

Contact Rachél Payne

Rachel Payne Sacred Creative Life CoachRachel Payne life creativity coach

Sacred Cacao Highlights: First Time


Sacred Cacao Circles

I am excited to begin offering face-to-face personal development work with ceremonial grade cacao.  My first public gathering will be in conjunction with a Red Tent Event at the end of August.  As a lead up to event, I want to share stories of my cacao journey with you.  

My first time to sit with cacao was during a time just before Creativity Tribe was fleshed out as a website, so I am starting us off with a look back to July 2012. Originally posted at Art of Collecting Yourself, my first blog.

Please look for a series of posts following this one that are designed to get us all in the mood for a bit of chocolate, spiritual loveliness.

Details for my first public ceremony and the Red Tent Event associated can be found in the EVENTS section in the menu above.

Sacred Cacao Highlights: First Time

July 23, 2012:  A Band of Gypsies

This weekend a load of traveling creatives crashed in various corners of my house: couch, floor, studio. (I want to give credit to my dear friend Irene Jaan for coining the phase Travel Creatives which so appropriately describes this Band of Gypsies I call my friends.)


Left side: Milena Worsham and Aaron El Leon
Running Buffalo Journeys
Right Side:  Irene Carranza Jaan
Travel Creatives 

We had all just come from a Sacred Cacoa Ceremony. Yep, I am letting my freak flag fly a bit here. Being a creative, you have to go where your creativity leads you, and lately mine has been expressing itself through my spiritual life.

We met in a little chapel I have passed by a thousand times but had never been in. The Chapel of Spiritual Light is on a triangular strip of land nestled between two busy streets , as if the city had grown up around it but it was courageously standing its ground. With a wooden frame reminiscent of old country churches, I found it quaint and unpretentious environment.

Take off your shoes and come on in….that was the way we were greeted, my sweetheart and I.  But we couldn’t get our shoes off quick enough. One after the next, we were taking in hugs and glowing smiles. One foot half way out of the first shoe, hug and smile. Hop on that foot to release the next shoe, hug and smile. Barefoot, hug and smile.

I walk through the door to the meeting area, a sanctuary with thick pile carpet that reached up to cradle each step. A circle of people, there, some long-time friends, some new and dear, others familiar faces, and even a few strangers…not strangers for long.

As we looked across the room at the symbol in a stained glass work, we recognized it as the symbol Eric and I had created for our wedding ceremony. For some, it is considered the Medicine Wheel or Odin’s Cross, for others, they might associate it with the astronomical symbol Earth. It had several layers of meaning for us. All more personal than religious. With three days left til we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary (which actually happens to be today….July 23, 2012), we felt it was an affirmation that we were in the right place.

Once we got settled in, I looked over and realized there was a huge stock pot filled with a warm chocolate drink. That’s when the smell hit me. Mmmmmm, yes, chocolate.

Keith, The Chocolate Shaman, invited us to get our cup and add as much or as little honey as we wanted. The chocolate looked like glistening fudge in the cup, thicker and much darker than the hot chocolate most of us are accustomed to drinking. The honey was beautiful. I had been off sweeteners other than whole fruit for a week which made the addition of honey to the super dark chocolate taste like a little bit of heaven.

Soon after that, The Chocolate Shaman shared the kind of strength and intensity this pure cacao harnessed.  The chocolate most of the world consumes (you know, the big names like Hersey’s, Cadbury and Lindt), according to the Chocolate Shaman, are missing 80-99% of the beneficial compounds that can be found in the older varieties of chocolate. Processing and hybridizing depletes the cacao of so much of its essential goodness.

Keith brings the chocolate from Guatemala where he has made his home for around 17 years. He has a special relationship with the cacao plant and has connected with some of the indigenous tribes in Guatemala who remember how to use the plant for medicine of the spirit.

We began drinking the mixture. I listened to my body for how much it wanted. It was delicious. Darker than any I had ever tasted. Sweet and bitter blended with a kind of warm, silkiness that feels like love. Okay, so perhaps that sounds like I am exaggerating or using poetic license, but the fact is the evening felt loving. Self-loving and other loving.

I can’t help but think that it might have something to do with the jolt of energy that your heart and mind get from both the intense chocolate and the meditation Keith shares. It’s a rush… subtle and substantial all in the same breath. As he talked, I could feel my heart beat increase. My body wanted to move. I began to rock back and forth slightly. The kind of rocking that comes from your chest when you hear a groovy beat. I wasn’t tripping. I wasn’t on some crazy drug induced high.  But my mind felt clear and I felt high on life.

Keith explained that the cacao will encourage spiritual growth. It invites you to look at where you might grow and then helps assists you as you choose to go there.  That might sound very far off or far out for some. It comes from the belief that certain things have a spirit to them. Plants, stones, animals, the Earth. I decide to play along. I decided to act as if….and see where that led.


I chose to cultivate my curiosity, one of the freedoms I enjoy with being a Creative Spirit.

I am glad I did.

As for my Band of Gypsies {Keith, Brendan, Milena and Aaron} they are each on their own adventure now.  Some headed back to Guatemala, others spending time with family.  I am grateful to have their energy floating around the house. Feels good. Oh, and I nabbed a bit of that yummy chocolate waiting for the next ceremony….Creativity Tribe style.

For more information about ceremonial grade cacao and/or to order your own, visit Keith’s on-line home Chocolate Shaman and his FB page Cacao Tribe.

 Rachel Payne life creativity coach

Hello Summer


For the last several months, I have been attending a local Wednesday night meditation group that is exploring the use of cacao as a partner in our personal work.  The group is hosted by Rev. Shar of Lucid Waking, a show on  Cacao is the plant that chocolate comes from.  Yep, I indulge in the yumminess of chocolate every week.  You know that feel-good thing that happens when you have a piece of chocolate?  Well, the kind of chocolate we use is very pure and has the qualities you would find in chocolate from heritage breed plants.  Even taking a little makes you feel a lot good.

We also practice taking that feeling the comes from smiling…that little glow you can detect all over….and amplifying it.  So we will be gathering on this first day after Summer Solstice to have some chocolate while we grow our smiles…. or perhaps I should say GLOW our smiles.

I have made a video to explore the light and the dark.  Let it be an invitation to you to connect more with the light that lives within you.

(Note: The images used in this video are taken using kinetic photography at night. They are of the Harbor Bridge in Corpus Christi, Texas. It is lit with lights that put on a show every night.  Enjoy!)

Curious About Cacao?
For more information about Ceremonial Cacao and Going to Glow, please visit Keith….lovingly known as the Chocolate Shaman.  His site has lots of great information…. and while you are there, make sure to check out the quality of his smile.  When you look at someone and can sense the peace in their heart the way I believe I can with Keith, you know they have something worth listening to.



Rachel Payne Life Coach

The Chocolate Eaters

cacao chocolate eaters

Sometimes it pays to walk along the fringe, out on that edge where the lay of the land isn’t quite known to you, where adventure is the word for the day.  That is where I roamed Sunday morning.  My journey there began quite awhile ago, with a whisper from deep inside about a path that might some day be mine.

This card is my AEDM offering for day #9. It is inspired by a phrase I have been hearing a lot recently…. Get out of your own way!

Several years ago I started hearing a rumble in my community, even saw part of a preview, about a movie, Chocolat,  in which a woman used an ancient blend of cacao (the plant chocolate comes from) and chili to bring transformation to those she met on her travels.  Everyone who saw it told me I would love it.  They were right.

I watched the movie and inside, my heart yearned to know that kind of metamorphosis.  My spirit yearned to know something about the elixir the woman in the movie crafted.  Was it just a fairy tale?  The story resonated with me probably more powerfully than any other movie I had ever watched.  What was it about that chocolate?  Was it for real?  Could chocolate transform?

As a woman, I have had a connection with chocolate.  When my moontime comes close, chocolate always seems to be part of the equation for relief.  It is my dessert of choice, and although I don’t cook much, if I do, you can bet there is some chocolate in it.

When I got married, about 7 years ago, I came close to that Chocolat experience.  We received several packages that included special blends of very dark chocolate that was mixed with a variety of other herbs to create an aphrodisiac response.  I thought at first that it must be hype.  But one night, my new honey and I watched our movie and indulged in our own elixir and needless to say, we didn’t quite make it through the movie before the love drug kicked in.  I was impressed with its potency but instead of satisfying my curiosity about the effects of cacao, it only served to pique them.

So when my friends, Irene and Milena, took a trip to Guatemala and began talking about Sacred Cacao Ceremonies with the Chocolate Shaman, I wanted to know more.  They each talked to me about experiencing the cacao together, but the time never seemed right. Then, in the middle of this past Summer, I got a call. The Chocolate Shaman was touring the U.S. and would be stopping to stay here in my hometown for a bit. I couldn’t help but imagine that I had manifested that, brought him to me.  What a grand synchronicity!

Just days later, I went to my first ceremony.  I wondered if there would be in strange feelings, anything happening inside. I wondered if it would change my life like it had done to the people in my movie.  I wondered what a Chocolate Shaman was.  My mind conjured up all kinds of images, all kinds of possibilities.  Then I met him, Keith.

Keith is probably one of the happiest, most gentle people I have ever met.  His heart feels like it has very pure intentions that are based on honoring the path that those in the ceremony want for themselves.  I felt very safe with him.  Some of the words I wondered about like shaman and ceremony were a lot less important in the end.  Keith was, above all, a good-hearted guy sharing a very special herbal drink with us that had the possibility of helping our meditations to have more meaning and who helped us to understand some of workings of the human condition.  It was really as simple as that…..and yet, also that powerful.

After the ceremony that night (the first ceremony I did with him), Keith and his group of helpers (or Band of Gypsies as I call them in the blog post I wrote about that night) came over to my house to stay over until they would be flying out the next day.  As I sat in bed, just before turning in, my mind drifted off.  I was thinking about the movie and how the work Keith was doing just might have the potential Chocolat hinted at.

Over the last several months, I have come back to those thoughts over and over again.  In my work as a life coach, I have found that some of the issues Keith focused on during our sharing were finding their way into conversations with the Creatives I work with.  In particular is the idea of being an Empath, a person who has a strong connection with other people’s feelings and emotions.

The first time I heard the word, I thought maybe they were meaning it in a psychic way. But more and more, I am understanding that it means some of that very natural cluing in that so many of us do.

***How you just know how another person is feeling.
***How you might actually feel another person’s physical pain or sense it.
***How so many of us are sensitive to the hurts of the world and take all of that into us.

Keith teaches a lot about this and then using the cacao walked us through how not to hold onto that hurt, pain, drama, and trauma.

And these last several months, I have earnestly worked on putting those exercises into action.  The more I do that, the stronger my inclination to share about what being an Empath is, how it can be helpful, and especially how it can be helpful for others without hurting the one who is picking up on all the feelings.

This work is especially important to me because I know what it means to love helping others but having to stop because it all becomes too much to handle.  Understanding the work of an Empath and how to manage it feels like a big piece of the puzzle for one of my coaching emphasis.

That brings me back to the fringe.  Keith has just finished his tour of the U.S. and will soon be headed back to Guatemala where he will continue his work with the cacao plant.  Before leaving, he stopped back in town for a farewell Sacred Cacao Ceremony, and that is where I spent a good portion of my day.

I was a lady on a mission.  I wanted to check in once and for all with myself because I am feeling called to work with chocolate and with Empaths.  The ceremony was just what I needed.  I felt like I worked on several issues that I let hold me back and have further locked in some of the tools Keith introduced us to in the original session.  I could feel how my reaction to other’s pain and discomfort was different this time around. I was more at peace and got hooked up in their trauma less often.  I was more grounded and more centered.  All of that would have been enough, but I got something even more satisfying from the ceremony.

In the end, as we were all cleaning up, Keith stopped what he was doing and walked over to me.  He made a point to tell me that he wanted to validate the work I feel called to do with cacao.  I shared with him some of my ideas and explained that they would be different than his work.  And as Keith is apt to do, he smiled his contagious, glowing grin and told me that one of cacao’s gifts is to make itself available in a variety of ways and that all those ways were right, that I just needed to listen for the way that was right for me.

And so, I will be listening, eating more sacred chocolate, and maybe watching my movie.


For more of the story about my first Sacred Cacao Story, make sure to connect with these posts…

Band of Gypsies and Lucid Waking Radio {big dream alert}

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