Posted by YerbaJon on February 08, 2014
There is a saying that the "thought of doing something is usually more painful than the act of doing it". Maybe we could just call this being lazy? Well, call me guilty. I have these moments where I somehow get to thinking that the whole act of preparing a yerba mate is just too much to manage. I have to heat up water? Pour some yerba mate into a gourd? Add some water and wait a minute? A whole minute?! Can't I just stay in my chair or keep staring at the stars? I guess when I am in these lazy moods, everything starts to seem like it is too much. Clean up? Really? I would have to move! Do my work? Ugh. Now? No thanks.
When I am able to overcome these lazy thoughts and actually prepare a yerba mate, I am always so happy I did. Should I be surprised? No. After all, this is what it is supposed to do. In Germany, the doctor's actually prescribe yerba mate to improve mood. And it does just this for me. It lifts off the lazies, flips my mind, pumps me full of energy, helps me to focus, and generally changes my entire attitude.
Yerba mate is so much better for my body than coffee or cola. Imagine that! My body likes vitamins B-1, B-2, and A. And the iron, magnesium minerals, and potassium certainly are welcome. The medical community is correct; yerba mate's riboflavin, colin, caroene, insitol, and pantothenic acid truly are required for good health. Plus the 15 types of amino acids are just icing on the cake. And there are still more benefits for the body! One example is that yerba mate increases the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the heart during physical activity - even during resting state! The Argentinian national soccer team benefited from this as they wisely drank yerba mate before every match the year they went on to win the World Cup. The Paris Scientific Society explained that it "is difficult to find a plant in any area of the world equal to Mate in nutritional value.” All that adds up to one really happy, satiated body and mind after I drink my yerba mate.
Once I get started preparing the yerba mate, I might find myself chuckling at my original laziness. Truth be told, preparing yerba mate is the perfect sport for the lazy! Heat up water on the stove. Pause, rest, and relax. Pour some yerba mate into a gourd. Pause, rest, and relax. Add some of the heating water into the gourd. Pause, rest, and relax. Insert the bombilla and begin to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Well...maybe it's not fair to call it actual labor.
There is not really much labor to making the yerba mate, especially when compared to making coffee. Ok, ok, ok, I admit it, I sometimes drink coffee. So. Very. Addictive. Still, I usually drink yerba mate. Yet, there are times when guests are visiting that I find myself preparing yerba mate for myself and others to share, while also preparing some coffee for those that are seeking that intense jolt. The yerba mate is so quick to prepare, that I am already enjoying it before the first cup of coffee is ready to be poured. As the coffee drinkers stare at the slow drips falling from the machine, the rest of us are already enjoying the yerba mate. Those of us sharing the yerba mate are usually done drinking and already feeling wonderful, awake, and fully present long before those with a coffee cup have gotten past the first sip of dangerously hot coffee. As the yerba mate drinkers are relaxed and fully focused on the conversation, those holding the hot coffee are left with a deep craving as their pursed lips blow to try and cool down the coffee to a temperature that will allow them to finally imbibe its contents.
The act of preparing yerba mate is the perfect ritual to gently carry me away from the weight of my worries - a confused state - and into the world of action and being. Robert Frost once described this power of ritual as, “one more stay against confusion.” Those who enjoy the ritual of having tea can relate to this grounding process of preparation. Now imagine if that tea is at least 10 times more nutritious, and the process more unique. The preparation is so simple, yet the final act is so profound. There you are, taking in nutrients through an ancient vessel that is filled with one of earth's most nutritious plants. Ahhhhh...
The question may not be a fair one, as it implies an unreasonable expectation that somehow I need to be drinking yerba mate. In reality, it is simply the wisest option. Coffee, colas, and other stimulants just don't have the same harmonious relationship with body and spirit as yerba mate. When I make a good choice, and choose yerba mate, things become right again. When all is said and done, and I have had my mate, I end up with an entirely different viewpoint of the world than the one I started with. Basically I move from my lazy low energy place to a new thought of "I could have had this mate sooner...what took me so long?!"
Anyone have a similar experience?