I was first introduced to Fehreen by my dear friend Shakti, The Holistic Chef (you can check out her profile here). After trying Fehreen's Ayurvedic teas which she only blends on a full moon at Shakti's house I was hooked! I have never experienced something  so delicate & beautiful as well giving me an instant overall sense of calm and happiness.  I just had to meet this tea lady and when I finally made it to Brisbane (timed it on a full moon of course so we could capture the blending process) I met Fehreen and her beautiful family who were so warm and welcoming and contagiously happy. Thanks so much for having us and sharing your passion ! x

You are a student of Ayurveda – tell us how you found this path? 

I was fortunate to have been born into a culture where Ayurvedic principles especially regarding food and home remedies were incorporated in everyday living. 

It was in my late teens that I was consciously drawn to research more into Ayurveda. My Google research was the years sitting and listening to my grandmother's stories that ignited my thirst of this ancient knowledge in the first place.  I remember she used to tell me how she made ghee, yoghurt, seasonal masala and 50 rotis all in a days work.  I somehow found inspiration from these stories!

 My formal education in Ayurvedic Science began 14 years ago, when Dr Ajit of AIAS first started teaching this course here in Australia. I think I will always be a student of Ayurveda as one cannot fully obtain all that it has to offer in one lifetime! 

For those who are unfamiliar with Ayurveda can you please tell us the simple principals of the system? 

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian system of holistic medicine. When translated from Sanskrit, Ayurveda means “the science of life”. 

 Ayurveda is a dynamic and interdependent combination of body, mind and soul. A complete philosophy of life that teaches us how to live, maintain, protect and improve health. The vital energies in the body known as doshas - Vata, Pitta, Kapha are responsible for all physiological and psychological function.  It is the well-being of these doshas that provides optimal health and balance in life.

Do you still practice Ayurvedic treatments & what are some of your favourite treatments and why? 

My favourite Ayurvedic treatment would have to be Shirodhara. It comes close to the experience of meditation and is a beautiful way to bring the body and mind back to equilibrium!  Often given after a head massage, a stream of warm medicated oil flows soothingly from a copper pot on to the third eye area (centre of forehead). Both the giver and receiver of this powerful treatment gain a tranquil state of mind.  

As a mother of a teenage daughter I tend to practice weekly Ayurvedic beauty spa treatments and I also have a teenage son who plays a lot of sports hence Ayurvedic massages are pretty popular in our household. 

How did the journey develop into blending Ayurvedic-balanced teas? 

When I was working as an Ayurvedic Therapist I prepared herbal concoctions for my clients to aid them though their detoxification program. It became quite popular and so when I decided to open my own clinic I wanted herbal teas and tisanes to work as part of my treatment plan. I didn’t ever imagine that after a year the teas would overtake my Ayurvedic practice!

Tell us about your tea blending process

 I formulate new blends on a new moon and do the majority of my blending at the time of the full moon. There was never any intention to blend on a particular day or night. It just happened that every time I was blending, the moon light would shine brightly through my window.  I'm not sure how to say this in words! It's like the lyrics of Bob Marley's song ... “There’s a natural mystic blowing through the air; if you listen carefully now you will hear.”  It is said that there is a feminine energy during full moon, it's a time to celebrate, nurture and beautify yourself. 

How do you come up with the blend concoctions? 

All my tea blends start with a story, inspiration or memory. Sometimes a client is looking for a particular blend but most times it’s my creativity accompanied by my knowledge of Ayurveda that creates a blend.  

Do you do personalised blends for different ailments? 

The six signature blends that I have created are for overall balance and well-being of the drinker.  However in creating these teas and tisanes the intention was always to balance the doshas as well as aiding the discomforts that may appear during a particular season. 

What would be some easy blends people could make at home for certain things? Eg. And instantly relaxing tea made from things you might have at home or feeling like a sore throat etc? 

For a sore throat or runny nose in early spring, mix together:

·      2 pinches of black pepper

·      2 pinches of dry ginger

·      2 pinches of powered Turmeric with 1 tbsp. of honey

·      1 cup of hot water.

Ayurvedic detox tea

Boil 4 cups of water.

Add 1/2 teaspoon of the following seeds to the water and continue to let it boil for about 5 minutes with the lid on.

·    Whole cumin seeds

·    Whole coriander seeds

·    Whole fennel seeds

Strain out the seeds and pour the liquid into a thermos. The key is to make the tea fresh every morning, place it in a thermos and take small sips of it throughout the day. It is best to drink it warm or hot. If the tea is too strong, reduce the amount of seeds to 1/4 teaspoon for 2 weeks, and then increase it back to 1/2 teaspoon.

You are one of the most infectiously happy people I have ever met – where does your happiness radiate from? 

Wow this is a funny question! I’ll take that as a complement :-)

I think it’s in my DNA!  I come from Fiji where people are always happy and relaxed. We don’t know any other way to be.  When growing up in Melbourne, my friends used to refer to our family as “The Cosbys.”  Both my parents are very happy and positive people and have passed on that happy song to my siblings and me.     

How does one be as happy as Fehreen? 

I am happy as well sensitive! There is a balance! The simple rules I live by are:

1. Dream, believe and follow your passion

2. Focus on the positive things in life.  Be present.

3. I have great siblings and childhood friendships that ground me as well as give me joy and laughter.

 4. Have compassion for others and be grateful for your daily blessings.

 5. As a student and a lifelong learner of Ayurveda and Tea (both which are 4500 year old) I’m always reading and researching.

6. I enjoy the simple life with my loving children and very patient husband!

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Photos + interview produced by thebharanieffect - our talented photographer is Maclay Heriot.