Friday, April 1, 2011

Adventures in Hope and Chocolate

The electric green hues of the spring are reminders of coming into life for all of us. I hope that no matter what is at the forefront for you, this can be a time of growth to inhale and appreciate. As I embark on my annual trip to Peru to check on our incredible work and stir up possibility, a beautiful teacher of mine reminded me to remember back to 2003 when the “still small voice” asked me to “go see with other eyes”, and therein, the eventual birth of DiscoverHope. It was that damn still small voice in my head. The one that doesn’t go away if you ignore it. The one that likes to plant possibilities and ideas. The one that causes you to wonder your whole life long if you just let it go. Maybe it can be called God, Spirit, Universe, or any of the things that I comfortably believe all are the same great thing. What I did know was that this small voice came to me for months in 2003 everyday amidst my silent mornings: “Go see con otros ojos.” And yes, the voice was half Spanish, which I figured was slightly comical inspiration. I remember the first time I heard it. The phrase meant nothing to me: Go see with other eyes? I’m leaving the country to see with other eyes! It certainly didn’t sound like a slick business plan. So I kept asking for more. For months, images and thoughts started to form in my head until I finally had the answer: I needed to leave the boundaries of the United States to see myself from a different perspective, to see with “other eyes.” But I knew what I wanted and what I had been directed to do: I wanted to explore the change-agent in me. I wanted to know about myself from a framework of newness that didn’t include the comforts of my own culture. I wanted to see myself as a person who could truly seize the opportunity to affect change in the world. And so…the seeds for DiscoverHope were planted. Many years later…I can’t even begin to describe what I have gotten from this experience. The most important thing I’ve learned from all of this is that we all share a common connection—a desire to realize potential…in ourselves, in each other, and in the world around us. DiscoverHope is founded upon the belief that one of the most powerful things you can do for another human being is to honor the potential in that person. When we do this, we awaken hope in their hearts. With hope, opportunity is born. The journey to Peru begins April 4-April 19 and I can feel it in my heart, this one is special. I’ll begin for a week in the amazing communities of the Northern Andes near Cajamarca and check out our work which is well and alive with hundreds of women. The second half of the adventure will bring me to the high sub-tropics of the Peruvian northern border area to vet our next possible sight. My mentors Brian and Dan (who dropped me in the Andes back in 2003) have developed a beautiful chocolate project with the local communities, Marañon Chocolate. The pure white chocolate beans they have found in this region means perfection in the confection world, and there is a lot of energy around their work from chocolate buyers around the world. They want to give back to the communities and knowing all we’ve created together, this is another chance to ignite possibility. Join me here as I’ll try to write everyday on the Adventures in Hope and Chocolate. There is nothing that Love cannot accomplish. Let’s face it…the world needs us to shine its Light. As me. As you. Grateful. Maggie

No comments: