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Meet JC Das of Good Luck Yogi in West LA

Today we’d like to introduce you to JC Das.

JC, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, I grew up on Tupac Shakur. My parents constantly took me to India and introduced me to soul music, which inspired me to fuse together my Indian culture and love for hip hop.

I started working in the music industry after attending sound engineering school. During this time, I was producing beats for underground artists. After touring with rapper KRS ONE, I developed an interest in conscious hip hop music and also began my journey to acquire more spiritual knowledge.

Coming off tour, a well-known radio artist wanted to work with one of my beats. I was initially excited because they could elevate my music career, but when I heard the lyrics talking about drugs, I realized I wasn’t comfortable promoting this lifestyle in my art. I took a step back to focus on more uplifting projects and started providing music therapy for autistic children, which really opened my eyes to children’s needs.

During this time, I was experiencing a lot of anxiety and was looking for answers so I started working with a doctor who taught me breathing techniques. This experience was so transformative that, as a result, I fully committed myself to the practice of meditation by living with Bhakti-yoga monks in India and the U.S. from 2013 to 2019.

Having experienced the benefits of deep breathing, I wanted to bring meditation into kids’ lives. I knew that to make meditation appealing to kids it had to be something fun, innovative, and family-friendly; I teamed up with a former behavioral therapist and mother of three to create an interactive meditation device named Good Luck Yogi to encourage and teach children to find inner peace and happiness.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I don’t think any road I’ve taken has been smooth. But I’m grateful for it. We’ve had countless struggles, but it’s the hurdles that make us stronger and allow us to add depth to our story. I’m thankful for every single challenge.

One particularly recent struggle of ours has been effectively pivoting during the current global pandemic. Children and families are under incredible amounts of stress and anxiety right now, and we’ve had to alter some of our approaches. For one, the school visits we lined up for the spring have been postponed indefinitely, and the VC firms we’ve been in conversation with stopped taking on new investments. So in a time when kids and families need GLY the most, our ability to reach them has been significantly disrupted. In response, we’ve been hosting online sessions to work with kids, releasing free content, and we’re launching a crowdfunding campaign to make GLY fly.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Good Luck Yogi – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
Good Luck Yogi is on a mission to raise generations of mindful children. If we want to change the world, we have to start with the future of our world – the kids. We want kids to not only discover the world around them but also the world inside themselves. We’re trying to teach every child that they are special, and give them tools to unlock the natural gifts that they hold buried within. That’s what we’re about.

Good Luck Yogi doesn’t look like any other meditation solution for children on the market. For one, GLY is an inner peace superhero and a physical toy that children can bond and play with. GLY’s presence in the home is a daily reminder to breathe, to come together as a family, and grow deeper in mindfulness. GLY is voiced by a child making the experience even more relatable. We’re trying to make meditation fun, and GLY does that extremely well.

What’s your favorite memory from childhood?
Traveling to India and witnessing majestic lands, holy rivers, sacred temples, and an out-of-this-world culture. Coincidentally, these trips were also the starting point for my spiritual journey: the juxtaposition of beauty with 3rd-world poverty, slum villages, leper colonies and homelessness changed my life forever. When I returned home, I found myself asking deeper questions, like “who am I,” and “what is my purpose?”

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