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Founder Thoughts

I know from personal experience. I don't see "Chai" as stuff anymore; I'm not complicated by that. I see spirit, I see energy, I see movement, and I see change through it.

Tea is also popularly known as Chai. Other than being vaguely aware of its medicinal powers and high-end varieties, there was little more that I knew and I certainly wouldn’t have equated Chai with being "the great human connector". Chai connects us back to nature, to each other, and to ourselves opened my heart to more than a different way of starting my day.

The Buddha said that we find a path, we must cultivate it to the extent that we would find that path again…make the roots deep enough so when the storm of death comes, they still hold.

I want to convey a frequency of presence and loving kindness based in non-sectarianism and freedom from conceptualization or belief or agreement or disagreement. I believe that Chai is a powerful carrier of that message.

And I've seen as I've traveled around, people translate the wisdom of chai into whatever tradition they come from…because the sharing and drinking of chai is a nonverbal transmission.

"Tea / Chai sutras" were written by nature in the veins of the leaf and they're timeless and nonverbal. When I offer you a cup of chai, you can't say that you don't believe in it or disagree with it because there is nothing to disagree with. It's just an act of loving kindness and an act of presence.

How does chai creates connections?

When "tea" it is grown and produced and shared properly, it connects us in three essential ways.

First of all, tea connects us to nature. We haven't lost our connection to nature; we've lost the feeling of our connection to nature. Our ancestors grew their own food, their clothes and homes were made of plants, and there weren’t any hospitals so the medicine was either plants or magic. Nowadays, we live in concrete houses and wear synthetic clothes and eat chemical medicine and processed food. So that feeling and connection to nature is gone but the connection itself is still there.

Every breath you take is created by trees and tea helps us to realize that and connect with it. It's a very magical plant; each leaf holds herbs and minerals, sunshine and moonshine. There is an old saying in China that goes, "Tea brings nature to society".

Second, Chai connects us to ourselves. Nowadays we're so distracted, we're constantly barraged with information and it’s so obvious that a cup of tea leads inward, it's moving inward, your attention is going into your mouth and into the flavors and aromas and then into the sensations as it goes into your stomach and body.

Finally, Chai also connects us to each other. Chai allows for a space of equality.

One of the oldest Chinese texts on tea says that, "In the morning when I take my tea, it's the only time of day that I can be rest assured that at that time of the day what I’m doing is the exact same thing that the Emperor himself is doing".

So there's this sense that when you get in a chai space and you share some chai, people become present and they set down their masks and their roles and their egos and their gender and connect and that’s something that even we all Indians and the Britishers have always understood. Chai not only acts as a medicine, but it's also a time. It's a time for setting down the world and the day and connecting to people on a meaningful level. If you have any experience drinking chai with people, you can quickly realize that conversations automatically turn to what's meaningful. It just facilitates that, that's one of its healing powers.

Chai create an invitation to connection by saying, "Here I am to anybody that walks by. I will look at you and see you and connect with you and greet you and it doesn’t matter where you come from. I’m here and I see you and my heart is open and we can be friends if you want and we can connect right now".