Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons

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Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons

Post by Welles » Fri Jul 04, 2014 8:47 pm

Success Through Stillness
By Russell Simmons with Chris Morris

Success Through Stillness is an important book in no small measure because Russell Simmons has street cred. He has been enormously successful in business having co-founded the hip hop music label Def Jam and created the clothing fashion lines Phat Farm, Argyleculture, and American Classics among other ventures. He continues to inspire and work with the Hip-Hop community and is able to talk an entire generation.

His message is simple. Inner stillness achieved through meditation is the foundation of all his creative success. He’s right. It is the first giant step toward a creative life, a spiritual life or a life of love. The message is simply presented and extremely well written by Chris Morris. There are enough different points of view to expand his thesis well beyond materialistic attainment to success in many different aspects of life.

The book is divided into five parts.

Part One asks “Why Meditate?” The answer, to be happy, is explained through anecdotes from Russell’s own experience with a particular focus on Yoga as the pathway through which he personally was introduced to stillness.

Part Two, “Why You Think You Can’t Meditate”, addresses the major emotional blocks that people put up to avoid the practice. No time, no place and the feeling of incompetence are all addressed with understanding. My favorite part was his dismissal of the idea that “God doesn’t want me meditating.”

Part Three explores some of the scientific findings about the valuable changes meditation creates in your material being. It helps your body. This is a valuable section in particular for those concerned with physical health. I loved the part on mindful eating!

Part Four is “Living Up to Your Potential”. I came away feeling that this was the heart of the book. Living in the present, the ability to focus, success and failure, inner peace, creativity, life without judgment and compassion were some of the subjects addressed. In short all of the qualities that one comes to exhibit with real spiritual growth were described in detail.

Part Five provides a strategy on “How to Meditate”. It is of course drawn from all of Russell’s prior experience so his technique a composite of Yoga, mantra use, mindfulness and his own discoveries.

The reason this book is so important in my estimation is that many people who might not otherwise be introduced to meditation will heed his voice. In acting on his advice they will be taking a significant step forward in their own spiritual growth. For it is the truth that in inner stillness we begin to approach God. Russell’s provided a practical path.

Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons with Chris Morris (on Amazon.com)

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Re: Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons

Post by Sandy » Sat Jul 05, 2014 6:23 am

Thanks Welles... I'd like to read this one...myself. I hope it does have the "umph" to attract a whole new generation to meditation. :finger:

I wonder if the thing with meditation is that we all think someone else will have the" magic silver bullet" to help us to control it, to weld it and enjoy it. By this I mean control our own mind and ability to achieve an inner quiet. I don't think any human person can provide that as it is the experience in itself of working through our own meditation path that makes it our own. I know from my own experience that sometimes it feels like everything including the kitchen sink is running interference and this can be one of the biggest frustrations! But in reality, often times these interferences tell us something, teaching us about ourselves, our ways of being etc...that might even be digging quietly at us unobtrusively. Well, not sure what I am saying and why, but I read some of the 1 star reviews of this book :roll: ( there were over a hundred 5 star reviews :D ) and after awhile chuckled as some stated they had read many meditations books... and this was short on "how to." Perhaps it was, as I cannot judge not having read it yet... But I am also thinking that no meditation book is going to meditate for you. We can read book after meditation book and learn hundreds of techniques but at the end of the day it is our job to find the way and what inside us that makes it all flow. We make excuses for ourselves and why we don't take the time to meditate or why our mind refuses to shut up till the cows come home... but for many of us this is part of the experience in the beginning as truly we need to pay attention to the thoughts and what is repeatedly returning...solve whatever issue rises to the surface, regardless of how small or large, and let it go... reducing the need for the thought to return and building "brick by brick" that "calm platform" we work from. Perhaps we would do well to ask ourselves, do we need to forgive someone?... ourselves? Or do we need to love someone?... once again, ourselves? Surprisingly, there can easily be a number of things, often well hidden, that niggle at us until they rise to the surface but once the worst of the work is done...it is easier after that... not that we will never have to examine and even re-examine things ever again. It would be nice but no, life is constantly providing us with a wealth of new experiences that we ingest and scrutinize and pass through. But at least the "traffic jam of retention" has been cleared and "the ride" is less "bumpy" after that initial start-up! It is safe to say that it becomes a little easier as we pursue a long standing practice of daily meditation.
I guess my long winded point is this... "That we cannot find success in meditation in any book without doing the daily work and strengthening our meditation muscle. We will do good to lighten up on ourselves and cease to blame life for the lack of quality meditative time. And we will do even better to remember that beyond a shadow of a doubt, on the backside of all this there are indescribable joys inherent in reaching the first step, and the second and the third and so on and so on... Meditation is well worth every scrap of effort we put into it and there is nothing more beneficial that we can do for our bodies, minds, and most of all, our souls.

And lastly, we do not work through any of this alone even if we feel we are stiff, sore and without the eye, ear and "pity" of any celestial in the far flung universe... Well, we may very well be stiff and sore...( in the beginning ..I suggest plenty of comfy pillows under the ole backside ;) ) but we aren't alone and if we stick with it even a little bit of the time we will start to know the lovely truth in that statement.

Our meditations are uniquely personal and maybe that is why we put up barriers in the first place. ;) A part of us, on a subconscious level, doesn't want us to know about or remember the painful stuff we have tucked away more securely then Fort Knox in our innards. But please let's work through those barriers preventing access to the quiet and peace that is our right in stillness. Know that it is a given!... and that without reading even one meditation book ever in our lives...we will be successful!

Okay enough out of me... LOL Not sure why I said all that...but I really don't understand people who think they can give a review when in the review themselves they say the book is sitting unfinished on their shelf. LOL ;) :roll: :)

I have a ton to learn... but I am eternally grateful to those people who take the time to inspire me with their own life efforts...good and bad that lead to progress on every level.

Thank you, Welles, for bringing this book to our attention!
Love,
Sandy
Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.

~ Chief Seattle ~

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Re: Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons

Post by Welles » Sat Jul 05, 2014 3:37 pm

Hi Sandy,

I wouldn't necessarily endorse Russell's book for you or anybody who has been on their own spiritual path for a while. His 'how to' section was tiny, very narrowly focused on his particular technique and if people are inclined to be critical there are lots of reasons. He expressed a lot of ego in going on about his friends (Oprah etc.) and telling a bit about some of the dissolute aspects of his life. Yawn. Celebrity egotistical nonsense. OK I could have concentrated on those aspects and written a negative review but that would have missed the point entirely.

Here’s a guy who helped create one of the seminal cultural expressions of an entire generation, rap music. Yes he went for wealth and fame, at the very least they were by-products of his actions but... he is opening up the starting gates to spiritual searching for a generation who will listen to him. This is huge! It is the real meaning and substance of the book. In that light it deserves a five star rating.

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Re: Success Through Stillness — by Russell Simmons

Post by Sandy » Sun Jul 06, 2014 4:17 am

Yes he went for wealth and fame, at the very least they were by-products of his actions but... he is opening up the starting gates to spiritual searching for a generation who will listen to him. This is huge! It is the real meaning and substance of the book. In that light it deserves a five star rating.
:cheers:
Do you think sometimes, especially with so many self publishers these days, that the introduction or the part of a book that details what the author wishes to convey is too often found lacking? A good detailed introduction might help alleviate any misconceptions from the buyer about the books content which is so important these days with many people downloading books and buying books online. I can see where disappointments in content can occur. And when I went back and read the introduction bit about this book, Yes, I could see where some might have been mislead. Still it was encouraging that well over a hundred derived the underlying intent and felt inspired. :sunflower:
:loves
Sandy
Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.

~ Chief Seattle ~

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