Biet Simkin wants to connect to part of your soul.
As the daughter of an awakened shaman, she has literally been exploring meditation since she was a toddler. Early adulthood proved turbulent and rife with tragedy. That struggle finally led her into sobriety and on a course to her future as a spiritual teacher and writer, beginning with teaching meditation to private clients.
A rare understanding and connection permeates everything she does, from her immersive Center of the Cyclone events—which weave meditation, self-inquiry, art, music and fashion into an explosive experience—to her music, including her most recent album, The Lunar. She has created events with everyone from MoMA to 1 Hotels and has had her work featured in magazines from ELLE to Vogue. This fall, her new book, Don’t Just Sit There!, will be published with Simon & Schuster.
Here, Simkin reminds us why there’s a distinction between embodiment and belief:
Live The Process: Did you take to mediation right away, when you were first introduced to the practice?
Biet Simkin: Well, my father was an awakened shaman and he taught me how to meditate when I was in diapers. To say I took to it right away would be to imply that any baby wouldn’t love meditating. The truth is children are born meditating, and we meditate all the time until we are around 7 years old. My father would remind me daily that I was the awakened one in our relationship. I knew he was right, but, sadly, didn’t fully grasp how true it was until I myself fell asleep and then had to use the tools of meditation and prayer to reawaken. My sleep lasted for an extended time, as most of our sleep does, but I began to awaken after my father’s death when I was 28 years old.
LTP: You interweave all manner of culture, meditation and self-inquiry. Do you have a background in the arts? Why is it beneficial to integrate these factors?
BS: Yes, I am an artist. As an 18-year-old, I was signed to Sony Music and toured and created. Today, I score my meditations with music from my own record, “Biet, The Lunar.”
Why is it important? I believe beauty and art awaken the soul way faster than sitting around acting spiritual. To be truly spiritual, one has to burn and see truth; to be spiritual one has to feel so deeply that they weep with gratitude. When I think about the times in my life where that level of feeling was present, art, culture and, generally, music were always somehow involved. I awaken people not just by talking at them, but by connecting to a part of their soul that yearns to reawaken. I do this through this fusion. It also keeps it down-to-earth and easy to relate to for anyone cause we all understand music and art—it is our native tongue. It is the language of the spirit.
LTP: What is The Center of the Cyclone?
BS: The Cyclone is simply society, materialism, imminent death, finances, vanity etc.—life of earth, basically. The concept behind The Center Of The Cyclone is that, to have access to life, one must have access to a place that is “non-life.” One must have access to “being,” and “being” is always happening in two places at once: one, in life and, two, in a space in the center where there is nothing. This silent space is where all things are born. This silent space is where God lives. I am not religious, and I do not mean a bearded man when I say, “God.” But our truth can only be found in this space deep within. That is the “center of the cyclone.”
LTP: Tell us about your book, please!
BS: My book is all about putting meditating into perspective for the modern human. It explains that meditation is not alone enough and that there will be 44 laws that try to stop you from enlightenment once you begin meditating. This book unravels what will be necessary to stand strong in the face of these 44 laws and grow the practice, grow your life and grow your being. I also tell many parts of my story in it. All the work I teach is based on 30 plus years of study of an ancient system, and so it’s not me pulling theories out of my ass. Instead, it’s me bringing ancient wisdom back for the people in a new and relatable way.
LTP: Are there any products or rituals (aside from your meditation itself) that keep you feeling balanced and healthy?
BS: I mean, all the things. For me, it’s journaling, affirmations, world travel, a commitment to pursuing the divine’s will for me on the three-dimensional plane, which means actively creating epic results here on Earth. Sex with my husband, laughter, a deep circle of friends, candles, flowers, long stretches of silence and daily breath work. I suppose the list can go on and on.
LTP: What does happiness look like to you?
BS: Remembering who I am. Fully. Feeling it in every part of my brain, gut, body and soul. Being in agony and ecstasy at the same exact moment.
LTP: What does it mean to you to “Live The Process” and how can we all do that more each day?
BS: Embodiment isn’t about belief; it is about love. To actively love life, to actively love one’s soul, to actively love others—that is where we experience grace. To “Live The Process” is to be a mother fucking bad ass. It means to go above and beyond your comfort zone to be witness to your own greatness! To be shocked by what you are capable of.