The year 2000 was a watershed in Shai’s life. Prior to this shift, Shai had been a journalist, working for Israel’s major newspapers, as well as an award-winning young author. But in 2000, two days before his twenty-third birthday and after three years of fervent spiritual searching, he had a direct realization of the illusion of the personal self and underwent a blissful dissolution of his individuality into the ocean of universal consciousness. This inaugurated a long process of inner transformation, which kept him quiet and secluded for one year.
Ever since, this ecstatic realization has been his uninterrupted state, supported by both living and dead masters. His living teachers have included Tyohar and Dr. Gabriel Cousens, who lovingly initiated him into the Hindu Nityananda tradition. To both, he feels great respect and eternal gratitude. In addition, he has always felt that his greatest inspiration derived from the twentieth-century philosopher and mystic Jiddu Krishnamurti (although he did not have the privilege of meeting him in person).
Privately, Shai leads a solitary, quiet life, and mainly spends his days writing and developing his philosophy, devoted as ever to his hope of constructing the most lucid and comprehensive enlightenment teaching that can serve those interested in transforming their lives. He enjoys spending the remainder of his time meditating, being with his daughter and friends, and immersing himself in one of his greatest passions—the art of cinema. He is a strict vegan and an ardent promoter of a healthy lifestyle.
Shai is also a dedicated postgraduate researcher in philosophy at the University of Leeds, UK, where he studies the unique dialogue of Jiddu Krishnamurti and its relation to the ancient dialogue form of ancient Greece and ancient India. His Master of Research dissertation, entitled Cosmos and Camus: Science Fiction Film and the Absurd, has been published by the academic publisher Peter Lang.
It has taken Shai many years to come to recognize that his teachings and methods—in fact, everything he does—are completely consistent with the tantric vision. This exhilarating recognition came soon after he had dedicated much time to researching the Inner Fire (Tummo) meditation of the Tilopa lineage. The meditation proved to be a gateway, leading him to the glorious world of ancient tantra, and finally to the understanding that he was, in actuality, a communicator and an expander of the principles of tantra.
Shai came to realize that he clearly shared with tantra the passion for the subtle body, kundalini, and chakras as a gateway to liberation and to fully realized human life. Like tantra, he has always been keen to work directly with, and transform, so-called nonspiritual dimensions of our being, such as will, desire, negative emotions, and traumas. Similarly, he has always been interested in merging opposites, like male and female, human and divine, heaven and earth, and matter and spirit. And he has always strongly believed that all the different layers of life are spiritually potent and sacred.
At this point, he finally recognizes that what he has done all these years has been a radical form of tantra, a rich and complex body of work dedicated to the revelation and activation of all the spiritualizing forces of human life. Every book and every seminar developed by Shai is an invitation to the transformation of certain dimensions of your extraordinary-ordinary human experience.
Shai’s dream is to create an elementary school founded on the principles of his all-inclusive approach and methods. More generally, he strongly believes that everything he does in life is to fill the gap that has remained in us due to humanity’s extremely limited notion of education. Because our schools fail to teach us what life is all about and do not equip us with the much-needed skills and abilities that could actually enable us to cope constructively with life, we are compelled to seek out complementary knowledge. However, by the time we reach this type of knowledge, too often our personalities have crystallized to a degree that is quite hard to change. This is why one should start learning how to live much earlier!
Shai’s other great dream is, in a way, similar: he hopes to establish a community life and a retreat center, steeped in extraordinary nature, to manifest and embody this comprehensive teaching of Heart of Tantra.