Past the Hindu deities, past walls painted the color of the seven chakras and adorned with framed images of bearded gurus, is a heated room vibrating with positive energy as Solange plays softly in the background. This classroom is the epicenter of Russell Simmons' 8,000-square-foot yoga fortress, Tantris, where regulars return every Friday for transcendental meditation sessions paired with an end-of-the-work-week moment of reflection that is led by the meditation swag master himself: Simmons. Here, a post-yoga, blissed-out Simmons leads talks about the magic that comes from stilling your mind and how to “light that shit up” and become more present by developing a meditation practice. His enthusiasm, which is peppered with thoughts on how meditation makes you better at work — and in bed — is infectious. At a recent session he ended the evening with the words: “Go out and focus on the infinite.” Then he looked at his Friday night guests, many of whom looked as if they'd just stepped off a runway or out of a boardroom meeting, and said with a joking smile: “Now go out and do some cocaine!” Sure, it's a mixed message, but for Simmons, life is a party at its most metaphysical.
Credit: Courtesy Tantris