Voodoo and Entrepreneurship

Avthar's Weekly Wisdom #29 (11/15/2020)

Hello fellow learners, doers and curious people!

Welcome to edition #29 of Avthar's Weekly Wisdom. And a special welcome to everyone who signed up this week who are reading for the first time.

🔥This newsletter is where I share practical wisdom about self-mastery, startups, health and happiness, all to help you live better. My goal is for you to discover one thing that can change your life, in a big or small way, every week. You can read all previous editions of Avthar's Weekly Wisdom here and find more useful writing on my website.

🆕 After publishing for 29 weeks straight, I'm experimenting with a new format for this newsletter. My goal is to make each edition shorter but filled with content covering a wider range of topics (see Life-changing Links below), while still allowing me to share my deep dives on specific topics I'm currently curious about with you. Do let me know if you like it or if I should go back to previous formats. I'm keen to hear what you think!

👨‍💻 This week I worked on my Startup Founder Resources series, gathering my best resources on finding product-market founder fit, building a product, as well as marketing and growth. I'm excited to share it with you in the coming weeks. (If you missed it, check out Part 1: What to read before starting a startup.) I'm also working on new podcast episodes about filmmaking and entrepreneurship, elite college education and real estate investing.

💥 Finally, Happy Diwali to all those celebrating! Wishing you all peace, good health and prosperity! Unfortunately, it's another one for me away from my family, but I'm celebrating and giving thanks in my own small way 🙂.

What's in this week's newsletter?

Here's what I want to share with you this week:

🎧 New Podcast with Sena Voncujovi: A conversation about African spirituality, connecting Africa and Asia, and lessons from founding not one but two organizations, with my good friend, the Ghanaian-Japanese entrepreneur and African spiritual practitioner, Sena Voncujovi.

📚 Life-changing links: In this new recurring segment, I'll be sharing the best podcasts, videos and books I’ve been enjoying on the topics of self-mastery, startups, health and happiness.

Please Enjoy!

Voodoo and Entrepreneurship

In this episode of Learn with Avthar, I talk with Ghanaian-Japanese entrepreneur and African spiritual practitioner (Bokor), Sena Voncujovi.

I first met Sena in 2012 in Costa Rica. Since then we've shared countless hours of insightful conversation. This podcast is one of the most interesting talks we've ever had.

I learned so much about African spirituality, how Sena connects Africa and Asia through his work, as well as the lessons Sena learned as a founder of ReVodution: Voodoo Education, which aims to educate the world about African spiritual traditions, and Jaspora, which aims to build a community for the African diaspora in Japan.

Listen Now

🎧 Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Online

If you can't listen to the whole episode, listen to these 3-5 minute highlights:

You can find these + 8 more highlights + more info about Sena here.

Life-changing Links

Here's some of the best videos, podcasts, and books I've found recently that just might change your life (for the better):

🏆 On Self-Mastery —

What does pressure really mean?: After loosing a group stage match to New Zealand in the 2019 Rugby World Cup, journalists criticized the South African national rugby team for not being able to handle pressure. In this clip, coach of the Springboks, Rassie Erasmus, talks about what pressure really means, after they won the final:

"In South Africa, pressure is not having a job, pressure is one of your close relatives being murdered, there's a lot of problems which are real pressure. Rugby shouldn't be something that creates pressure, it should be something that creates hope...we've got a privilege of giving people hope, not a burden."

🚀 On Startups —

Twitch founder's advice to new founders: Justin Kan is the co-founder of Twitch. I deeply resonated with his advice to a friend who just started a company.

"Work on yourself: Meditation, therapy, exercise, get good mentors, find a network of founders at your level. Every hour you put into yourself will pay huge dividends in the long run.

Don’t worry about goals or outcomes, only worry about building a framework for directional progress You don’t control the outputs, you only control the inputs"

💪 On Health —

Selfish Brain Theory: How does the human body prioritize energy consumption? And what can this tell us about the epidemic of obesity and metabolic syndrome in society? Enter the Selfish brain theory. A team of German researchers coined this term, which explains why the body isn't able to use its own fat stores as energy, which leads to overeating and more fat gain.

"An interruption of the signal pathways of the cerebral energy request is critical for the development of adiposity: If the brain can request energy only insufficiently from the body periphery, then it compensates for this insufficient supply with an increased eating, and thereby leaves a surplus to the body: in the long run obesity arises."

🙏 On Happiness —

Say Thank You: I've been listening to this wonderful video on the importance of gratitude at the end of every day for the past 2 weeks. As someone who's very focused on achieving goals and doing as much as I can, this video has helped me end each day with gratitude, recognizing the abundance in my life. That way I can internalize gratitude while I sleep, rather than internalizing the scarcity of seemingly not doing enough.

"Say thank you. Thank you for grace, thank you for mercy, thank you for understanding, thank you wisdom, thank you for parents, thank you for love, thank you for kindness, thank you for humility, thank you for peace, thank you for prosperity. Say thank you in advance for what is already yours."

Parting Shot

I'll leave you with a question which I've been pondering since watching the What is pressure? clip linked above:

Where in life are you focusing on the burden instead of the privilege?

It could be your job, it could be growing your business, it could be in your family or relationships. What would focusing on the privledge create for you in your life?

Hoping you have a week filled with growth, gratitude and greatness,


If you found this online or someone forwarded it to you, please take a moment to subscribe:

Let me know which parts spoke to you by reaching out on Twitter @avthars, replying to this email or hitting the comment button below:

Leave a comment

🎉 If you enjoyed this letter or any of my previous letters, please do share it with friends, family and coworkers who would enjoy it too: