Interview by Ty Mopkins (@teamMOPKINS)
We recently had the opportunity to talk to Russell Simmons about his new book Success Through Stillness. Most of the interview below is about his new book but we did get manage to get some sneakers involved. This was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up as Russell Simmons is such a great person and icon. For all the old school guys who remember the movie Krush Groove then you should appreciate the answer to the question below.
First Russell I gotta thank you for taking time out and kicking it with me today. New York Times best selling author once again, congrats on that. So I have to ask what brought about the new book “Success through stillness”?
Thank you. I wanted to write this book because meditation has been such a blessing in my own life, such a useful tool. I’ve experienced how it can transform not only your mind, but your relationship with the world, and I wanted other people to experience that too.
Touching on Chapter 3 of the book which is called “I don’t have time”. Now I know you have been a meditator for over 15 years now. So when was that moment if you can remember that you finally decided to start making time for meditation?
Honestly, I don’t remember having an “ah hah!” moment. It was just that after I had been practicing for a few weeks I began to notice how much more at ease I was moving through the world. But at the same time having much sharper focus. I liked feeling that way, instead of cloudy or high strung. So I stuck with it. And today I couldn’t imagine going without it.
The Washington Post is quoted saying that “Like logic philosophy, hip-hop is all about the power of vibration, the power of the word and Simmons (yourself) emerges as the first influential voice to make that connection for a “new generation” so with that being said, what is the age group of this new generation that they speak of and with the easy distraction of social media these days how can meditation compete with Instagram?
I don’t know if the “new generation” has a specific age. I know that there are hip-hop fans in their 40’s or even 50’s who probably feel like they represent something different than what their parents did. Just as someone in their teens or 20’s might feel the same way.
And I think once people try meditation, especially young people who spend so much time on social media, they’re going to see the benefits instantly. Look, I think social media is incredible. It’s about connecting people, which something I’ve dedicated my whole life too. But at some people we need to let go of the distractions and let our minds settle. A teenager might not even be able to articulate that need, but they feel it in their gut. And if they get exposed to meditation, they’ll realize it’s what they’ve been searching for…
We all know meditation is about silence and stillness so how about if a person gets too comfortable and falls asleep while meditating plus how much time should be dedicated to meditating?
If you fall asleep during meditation, don’t sweat it. It just means your body is tired and needed that extra rest. When you wake up, just gently return to your mantra and continue your practice. But the key word is “gently.” Don’t begin thinking, “Shit, I just feel asleep, this session is ruined.” No, everything is fine. Just gently return to the mantra and settle into that stillness inside you.
Before I let you go you know this is a sneaker blog and we all know the one sneaker that you have made famous over the years, and ironically next year (2015) will mark the 30th anniversary of my all time favorite movie “Krush Groove” so we need to get with adidas and come up with a “Krush Groove” collection. Which will of course feature a adidas superstar (shelltoe) and matching apparel. I know we can make that happen Russ, what do you say? Because we all know that movie was filled with adidas… it was almost like an hour and 45 minute commercial for adidas.
Wow, its been 30 years, hell yeah lets get them to do a sneaker. You should design it Ty, lets call Herman in Germany and get it going.
In closing Russell I want to once again thank you for your time and always showing me so much love whenever you and Myorr come to Detroit. So I will let you finish this interview by telling our followers what they can expect and will get out of purchasing the already best selling book “Success through stillness”?
When you pick up this book, you will be picking up the most straight forward guide to meditation that is out there. Oprah even just told me that herself. And really, there’s no need to complicate it. Meditation is about tapping into the power and peace that’s already inside of you. I’m not asking you to go out and get something that you’re currently lacking. This only about looking inside and finding peace.
Needless to say we have already reached out to adidas about the possibility of making the collection happen.
Special Thanks to @teamMOPKINS, @UncleRUSH