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REALLY RICH: Balancing Wealth with Health


A Conversation with Russell Simmons by Bill Van Arsdale


R


ussell Simmons is a rare combination of self-made multi-millionaire and spiri- tual guru. Co-founder of Def Jam records, the Phat Farm fashion label and several other business and philanthropic ventures, Rus- sell has just released his second bestselling book, Super Rich: A Guide to Having It All. His idea of “having it all” is not what one might imagine.


While you have achieved extraordinary financial success, instead of becoming completely swept up in ego and material things, you have evolved from being the “Godfather of Rap” into a guru. What set you on the path to writing Super Rich?


Courtesy of Gerald Janssen


As we grow, we experience proofs that what our parents, preach- ers, prophets and scriptures told us as a child is true: The process of living in the cycle of giving is the thing that makes us happy. We also learn that the outside world separates us from the God inside of us, and if we take that Godlikeness and exude it, spreading it out, then the world gives it back to us. These truths are right in front of us, but we are not taught them enough, or else we forget to remember them. So, the purpose of this book is simply to help us remember.


You present many lessons on how to move toward higher consciousness, while simultaneously allowing for financial success. How can we use our creativity to apply ourselves to something we really believe in without worrying about accolades or financial reward?


In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says you have control of the action alone, and never the fruit. The work we do is our prayer. Going to work every day is God’s work. Finding an entrepre- neurial business or another endeavor that you are proud of and inspired to use to give—that’s God’s work. You have to be


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