Bio-engineered foods like the so-called “purple tomato” promise a future where you can you add a gene from one food - in this case a Snapdragon - to a simple tomato to create an ultra-potent anti-oxidant superfood. For those of you that are squeamish about eating the laboratory-generated fruits of a geneticist’s brainstorm, be assured that foods can also be nutritionally enhanced in a multitude of ways. Chocolates, for example, have the ability to not only promote physical well-being, but spiritual contentment and a profoundly good energy flow. All you need is cocoa, the right herbs, the right spices and some good vibrations. Literally.
To do this, start with already anti-oxidant rich dark chocolate, says Lisa Reinhardt, CEO of Phoenix-based Wei of Chocolate; make it Fair Trade and organic; add (flavorless) medicinal herbs and beneficial spices; a little “love, mantra and pure intention”; infuse with the “vibrational essences” of flowers and gems to simultaneously calm and energize, and you’ve got yourself a chocolate that no scientist would claim ownership of, but might enjoy.
The goal of all this actual, spiritual and vibrational goodness, according to Reinhardt, is to make the act of eating chocolate into a metaphysical experience. “Our chocolates let you savor the space between two thoughts. They bring you into the present,” she says.
Wei’s outré confections are the result of combining ancient herb-based healing traditions with a non-industrial, holistic one: vibrational medicine. It’s an alternative therapy that balances the body’s dynamic energy fields (i.e. makes you feel better) with healing currents that adherents believe can be collected from plants, gemstones, crystals, water and sunlight.
It’s transferring energy, explains organic alchemist Katie Hess of Lotus Wei Organics who supplies Reinhardt’s essences. She harvests flowers biodynamically, using astronomy to determine a flower’s peak energy, and transfers their vibrational currents - their energy - to water via solar infusions. She creates essences by diluting the energy-infused water with alcohol using homeopathic techniques. “They’re not extracts, essential oils or tinctures. They have no flavor. They’re pure flower energy,” she says. It’s flower power made literal.
That a walk in a garden or a field of flowers can refresh and revitalize a person is evidence of flowers’ inherent energy, she says. That’s the energy she harnesses. Skeptics scoff but Hess says physics back her up. “It’s the concept of sympathetic resonance,” she says. If you strike one of two tuning forks in the same room, the struck fork’s energy will be transferred to the other, making it vibrate as well. “That’s the same way flower energy is transferred into water,” she says. Once ingested, these vibrational currents flow into your acupuncture meridians, rebalancing your energy,” says Hess.
Besides essences and familiar spices like cardamom, cloves and cinnamon in Wei Gratitude and chile in Wei Love, and Italian espresso in Café Wei, Reinhardt adds herbs including rhodiola, maca, eleuthero and astragalus for adrenal and immune support. “Like the essences, you don’t taste them but they’re in there and they work,” says Reinhardt.
“People drop all extraneous thought when they taste the Wei and find themselves nowhere else but fully in the present moment,” say Reinhardt. Translation: The exotic spices, healing herbs and floral vibrations taste so good and are so good for you that it makes you stop in your tracks and take a moment for yourself.
“It’s the opposite of the M & M effect,” she says. It’s the mindful consumption of empowering chocolate. Just one or two pieces create, “a pathway to meditation that allows body and mind to synchronize and connect.”
Using Katmandu as a base, Reinhardt spent eleven years exploring and experiencing the spiritual traditions of India, Tibet and Nepal. She lived for a while in a cave in northern India with a single light bulb as her only amenity but spent most of her time meditating in monasteries. What affected her the most were the realizations that “the whole fabric of the monks’ lives was to benefit others” and the contentment it brought them. She wanted to incorporate that kind of spiritual fulfillment into her life and work and impart it to others when she returned to the States. She didn’t find in a series of publishing and marketing jobs. She found it in chocolate.
“So much of our lives is spent thinking about the future and the past. We’re trained to multi-task and live with distraction” she says, “but insight, compassion and wisdom exist in the present.” She needed a “language” to explain this concept of bringing people into the present and “found the language in chocolate.” Eating chocolate is the perfect medium for taking time for yourself, she says. “Let it melt. Don’t get your teeth involved. Chewing is a distraction,” she suggests.
“People have no clue that the herbs and essences are in there, but their bodies give them immediate feedback,” says Hess. If a fatigued person loves a chocolate that’s infused with an adrenal-supporting essence “what that person interprets as ‘loving the flavor’ is the body is reacting to the flower’s frequencies and recorrecting the body’s energy field,” she says.
Don’t fret if you can’t make the leap of faith to actually believe in the chocolate. It will still do a body good. “You don’t have to believe in essences for them to work,” says Hess, who also collects vibrational essences from gemstones. She points out that there are other energy transfer and balancing techniques, like acupuncture, which work and which science can’t explain. “Essences are subtle, gentle, powerful and impactful. The best way to see if they work is to try them,” she says.
To that end, Reinhardt and Hess are making chocolates infused with sleep-inducing essences for a double-blind study with a sleep specialist in Tucson. They’re confident the study will prove their claims. And if some still don’t believe, that’s just fine by them.
Flowers and chocolate have always been an ideal way of telling your loved one how much you love her. Wei’s vibrationally-enhanced chocolate lets you give her both in the very same box. No batteries required.