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September 27th - 29th

Retreat: The Spirituality of Sacred Cacao

Join us for an immersive experience into the world of sacred cacao at our upcoming retreat!


Today, cacao has gained significant importance in various aspects of our lives, from nutrition and medicine to its integration into holistic practices like meditation, sound healing, and ceremonial rituals. 


Guided by esteemed elders, elder Efrén and elder Chonita, you will learn how to work with the medicine of cacao, its ancient uses during ceremonies and rituals, and its role in healing and spiritual practices. Receive teachings from these knowledgeable figures—a 10th generation Maya priest, traditional healer, and a midwife and cacao gatekeeper, respectively. 


Intended Audience

  • The retreat welcomes everyone who is seeking healing and wish to gather around the profound wisdom of Mayan elders, their spiritual beliefs, practices, and the sacredness of cacao. 

  • Those who share an interest in cacao, including its medicinal and ritual applications, and wish to deepen their understanding and proficiency with this potent plant. 

  • Individuals enganged in holistic therapies, psychology, medicine, anthropology, educators, and who are curious about exploring alternative approach in their daily interactions. 



  • To learn about the origins and tradition of Sacred cacao through the narratives of indigenous wisdom keepers who will lead us on this journey of discovery. 

  • To understand Maya cosmos and the ritual of setting up the Maya cacao altar.

  • To learn about midwifery and early childhood practices in the Maya culture interwined with cacao.

  • To learn the spirituality of cacao and ancient ceremonial use: Gain insights into cacao's sacredness, healing properties, and traditional ceremonial practices.  

  • To learn the importance of cacao in daily life: Cacao plays a significant role in nutrition, medicine, and the holistic movement. For the Mayan peoples, it serves as food, medicine, symbol of family, community, biodiversity, and spirituality. 

  • To understand the wisdom of cacao as it connects with nature: Cacao embodies simple yet profound wisdom, linking people with the Earth, elements, and each other's hearts. 

  • Delve into the world of cacao in the retreat: Participants will engage in the artisanal production of cacao.  

  • Learn about the thirteen sacred Mayan cacao beverages.


Elders' Biography


A'x Mein, Spiritual guide of the Maya community of Yocot'an, Mexico

Abuelo Efrén Hernández Maldonado lives in Mexico and belongs to the Mayan Yokot’an community from the lands of Miahuatlán, in Tabasco. He is the tenth generation of his family taking care of 20 hectares of sacred cacao groves for over 100 years. Guardian and keeper of Mayan ancestral wisdom, Mayan priest, and traditional healer. He is a member of the regional indigenous council ik'nhas'kin'jha. He also participates in the Circles of Wisdom of the elders at the national level. He is a member of the Mesoamerican Coordination of Mayan spirituality. 

Abuela and midwife Maya Yokot'an, Mexico

Abuela Chonita, Asunción Morillo Lozano, from Chiapas, is a midwife who heals with herbs and medicinal plants. She is a caretaker of cacao in her community.

Mayan Elders: Meet our retreat guides

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