A Story of Chocolate ©
Once upon a time in a rainforest hidden from the outside a world, a curious tree grew beneath the lush canopy. It was adorned with delicate flowers and painted vibrant with mysterious pods.
The tiny flowers were lovely, like angels floating on the bark of the tree. They grew by the thousands and held their breath, were shy. They had no perfume, no flashy colors, nothing to intrigue a suitor. The bees flew right passed; the butterflies didn’t look twice, only the wind noticed. It directed the midge flies into the flowers. The midge flies jumped off the flowers and carried pollen with them. Periodically one of the midges was blown into another flower. With this process, it was amazing that even 3 flowers were pollinated for every thousand, but they were, and they grew.
Soon the tree was bursting with beautiful green, yellow, orange, red, and purple pods. The pods resembled the skin of an old woman, as though a thousand ancient stories rippled deeply upon its surface. The animals were drawn to the curious tree and plucked the pods to taste the tales. Inside purple or ivory beans were wrapped in a thick pulp that tasted like a fragrant lemon sorbet. The more they started to tasted it the more the desire for it grew. They’d suck on the pulp and throw the beans aside. But the beans didn’t mind. The earth felt good. Blankets of leaves wrapped them and they listened to the melody of life and sprouted.
The legend of people’s first encounter happened just north of the equator 1900 BC when the Indigenous people happened upon the little grove of curious trees. They watched the animals savor the tastes and joined in. It opened their palate with a sweet and sour sensation. It made them smile. Below the trees, music abounded through the untouched pods that were hardened like wood with rattling beans within.
When the pods went untouched the pulp inside began to melt and ferment, the acids broke through the cellular walls of the beans, killing them. Rendering them useless. Then the hull absorbed the liquid pulp and it petrified its self, falling to the ground.
It seems people can feel this way too. Worthless, unwanted, or hurt, and their shells harden. They often try to put on a smile and pretend all is well all the while their hearts rattle within.
One day as the people were in ceremony one of the petrified pods broke and the useless beans fell out. An alchemist stepped forward and gathered them. He placed them in a mortar and pestle and ground them into paste. With a touch of sweet water, he brought the paste to his lips and a world opened before him.
The gods sent a message through the life of the curious tree and opened the minds and souls of those who drank. For the only way the power of cocoa is released into the body is if it goes through the fermentation process and the releasing of its cellular walls.
From what looked and seemed as something practically worthless, the inside of that petrified pod ended up holding one of the most coveted substances of all time.
The gift of chocolate is the gift the gift of life. It shares the importance of touch. Without touch, the flowers fall. Without touch and desire, the pods don’t open, and the beans don’t grow. But the most important lesson is even though someone or something is rendered useless look again. Because, beneath what may look ugly or dumb or undesired, there is a spirit that resides holding the most special thing of all. You.
Somewhere along the path less traveled, my heart it led, for directions baffled. Should we meet before the end, the gift of chocolate for you, my friend.
With the Kindest Regards,