There is a plant spirit you probably already work with every day. Coffee!
Coffee is prepared from varieties of the Coffea species (that’s not a typo, it is spelled Coff“ea”). These plants are native to North-East Africa, Madagascar, and a number of islands off the east cost of Africa. The two most commonly cultivated varieties are C. Arabica and C. Robusta.
Upon ripening, the berries of the plant are picked and dried. The seeds are removed from the dried berry husks, and these are thereafter referred to as “coffee beans”. The beans are roasted and ground before being brewed.
Coffee acts as a stimulant for humans and animals. An old bit of folklore says that the coffea plant was first discovered when a shepherd noticed his goats were acting incredibly energetic and frisky, and staying up all night. He investigated, and found that they had been eating the berries of a particular bush. He gave these berries a try, and became a lifelong customer!
When we drink coffee without recognizing that we are working with a plant spirit, we are taking the plant and its sacrifice for granted. However, you can turn your daily consumption of coffee into a spiritual experience!
Step one: Approach the plant with love. As you work with the beans or coffee grounds, be thankful for the plant and its support and involvement in your life. Thank the coffea plant for its sacrifice and for the benefits it has, and is about to, bestow upon you. You can give these words of thanks out loud, or think them. Give the plant your love and reverence for the gifts it is about to bestow.
Step two: Brew the coffee.
Step three: Drink with mindfulness. Be fully aware of the flavors of the coffee. You are experiencing the alchemical spirit and soul of the plant as you drink it. The essential oils of the coffea seeds speak to you through their flavours. Be there and be present with the soul of the coffea plant as you drink. And think thoughts of gratitude as you enjoy time with your old friend!