The culture that we have right now has made deep connections between masculinity and patriarchy. But cultures change with time so men need to see themselves in the man’s world. Kevin Oroszlan describes the rise of the awakened masculine as a journey of a man in man’s world, realizing that the myth of the masculine is dying. And when a myth dies, it means that life breathes anew in this awakening. Kevin shares that spiritual practice, like meditation, not only leads to peace and focus but also presence and attention.
117: Rise of the Awakened Masculine with Kevin Oroszlan
I am with my new friend Kevin Orosz, who I saw on Facebook Live. He has a very popular over-800,000 views Facebook Live where he starts off deadpanned and says, “Masculinity is dead,” which was very charged and caught my interest. We invited him on the show and talk about men relating and the importance of presence. We then have Gil. He asked some questions. We gave him our viewpoints and sent him on his way. For more shows, please visit us at TuffLove.Live. If you love the show, please visit your favorite podcast app and send us some loving by giving us a review. Thank you so much.
I’m with a new friend and a guest, Kevin Orosz, who will be talking about The Rise of The Awakened Masculine. How this happened with Kevin was I was going through my Facebook feed as I normally do, coach this, product that, a funny pet animal video this, and all of a sudden this handsome guy showed up on my feed. He was staring at the screen like he wanted to pick a fight with me. I played the video and it starts off with this stare and the first thing he says is, “Masculinity is dead,” or something like that. I was like, “I got to watch this. This is my kind of guy.”He has this seven-minute Facebook Live video that is one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. It not only describes something that I agree with but also offer some solutions in term of it. A lot of times we just bitch and complain about what’s not working and then what do you do? He really just showed some alternative viewpoints, gave credit to his teachers. All in all, I was intrigued by him so I contacted him. We got connected and I invited me on the show. I’m pleased to have him on the show. Hi, Kevin, how’s it going?
Hi, Rob. Hola. Como estas y Costa Rica. Thank you so much for that beautiful love and analysis. It’s awesome to hear how you found the video and I’m stoked to be joining you.
Kevin does many things. He’s a (r)Evolutionary Coach, freestyle MC, and yoga teacher. He went for the school, quit the corporate and traveled. One of the most interesting parts is he comes from Texas and now runs workshops. He has his own private coaching and works with a group called the Mystic Misfit. They run coaching programs in itself. Welcome to the show, Kevin.
Thank you, Rob.
What part of Texas did you come from?
I was actually born in Midland, West Texas, out in the oil fields. I spent most of my childhood in Houston, growing up there. I’m still technically a cowboy although I do live in California now.
I’m a New Yorker and that New Yorker definitely shows up from time to time. You grew up in Texas. You were educated and formed of what it means to be a man in Texas. What was your journey from that that boy who grew up to be a cowboy, a Texan, to just give a synopsis of how you got to where you are now?
I was raised in Houston, a typical suburb, two working parents scenario. The masculine role models in Texas are very rough and tough, armored cowboy, football types. I never really resonated with that even as a boy. I attended the University of Texas in Austin. Once I moved to Austin, I was exposed to a lot more liberal philosophy, sex, drugs, rock and roll, and things like that. I began to expand my mind. It was the year after graduating my undergrad and applying for a PhD program that I realized I needed to go West. That’s when I moved to California which began the whole journey into the conscious community, into communication and expanding my perception of what it means to be a man.
The main viewpoint I had to move through was women were weak, lazy, and less than. I was a first born New York Jew, so I had all the trappings of what it meant to be a man. I had to move through that viewpoint. What are some of the viewpoints that you found yourself moving through?
Much like you just said, the inferiority of women was a big one, like the second-class citizenship and second-class communication I experienced with a lot of the women in my life, including women in positions of power, like my teachers. It didn’t stick with me because as a boy, I was very shy, very sensitive, more of a heady intellectual type. I myself label myself a late bloomer in school. It was really the inability of men to express their emotions and playing football and soccer and growing up in the sport culture. It was all about holding that in. That for me was the biggest paradigm that I’m still overcoming.
What do you see in terms of relationship with men, as a teacher and as a coach, how does that same view point show up with your students?
I had a video a few weeks ago on de-armoring. The idea of musculature is that there are a lot of holding patterns in the muscles themselves and the tissues as well as the emotional body and our language. This is often something that I find clients and the attendees at events will be breaking through, especially men, is these held the patterns that have formed this crust over their reality, over their language. Often it takes a shot to the system to breakthrough the scar tissue or some crisis for them to realize that it might be valuable to move these types of things.
In your video, you start off with the concept that masculinity is dead and this is a rallying cry for you. Can you describe again what you meant by that? What’s your viewpoint around this term, “Masculinity is dead.”
It just dropped in. I was in a very high energy state, focused, and it just came to me. At that moment I was thinking of Nietzsche’s claim that God is dead and what that meant for Western philosophy. It was also, to be honest, my playing the art of titles because that’s a big part of the internet game. I don’t know. A lot of people were upset by it because I didn’t say, “The old masculinity is dead,” I said, “Masculinity is dead.”I say that the current paradigm, the machismo and the emotionally unavailable lone soldier, capitalist, white CIS male has been my experience of what masculinity is. The most general sense as men, I feel like that’s been dead and decaying for some time. I was trying to hit a punch line and grab people’s intention to share my perspective on my own journey as a man. When a myth is dying, it means it’s time to breathe a new life and regenerate or renew it. That was my intention of that cycle.
When you were describing masculinity, I heard you were describing the patriarchy and the way you described it as male and white and cisgender and those things. Is it your impression that the version of masculinity is connected to the patriarchy?
They’re intimately connected. The patriarchy as the empire, as Moby Dick called it, is largely based around this model of masculinity because of the male rulership and these constructs. They are intimately tied together, although patriarchy itself and the resistance to it that we saw in the 20th Century is more organizational for me from my perspective, whereas masculinity goes a bit deeper because both men and women have this concept of masculinity. The concept of masculinity is also dead and dying within women. That maybe the reason why we’re seeing this shift now.
Say more about what you mean by dying inside of women.
Polly Young, one of my favorite mentors and authors, speaks about in the subconscious mind of a woman is the image of a man, the animus, and likewise vice versa. In the subconscious of man is the image of a woman, the anima. The dominant model or understanding of what masculinity means as it’s embodied and manifested in men is also intimately tied to conceptions held by women, little girls, grown women, women in positions of power, about what a man is. They also have both poles. I deal a lot in polarity and tantra in the relating work I do. We operate in these two poles, the Yin and Yang, the masculine and feminine, the creative and receptive energy types. The masculinity mask that has been worn and it’s still being worn in much of the world by man is also reflected in how women view men. This is what the awakened masculine and the divine masculine is all about. It’s leveling up that perception.
Let’s bring this down to a more pragmatic, practical level. It’s challenging to be a man in today’s world and it’s challenging to relate to men in a man’s world. A man finds himself questioning his masculinity, questioning who he should be and how he should be in the world. What are some of the steps you take in your coaching and your programs to help them be as you described, a more evolved man in today’s world?
The really brass tacks steps for me is a deep practice that cultivates presence. What I mean by that is, for me, in martial arts sports, can you accomplish this as can an arts or a spiritual practice like meditation or yoga, whatever that means to you? The quality of a man in particular is the quality of his presence. The presence is his focus and attention, which then will lead into his purpose or the creative gifts he is offering to the world. I found in my life, the most powerful way to root into this awakened mask on is viewing my entire life as an opportunity to serve my gifts in the highest capacity to the world. The more I can align with that, and that’s through cultivating these practices, the more I can embody that kind of man I want to be.
Presence is the buzzword. It is the main word that most women want from men that’s most confusing to men. I do agree with you that to build a practice, to be engaged with a body, to be embodied, to know our impact when it comes to how we interact with women and how we interact with the world is something that most men don’t quite know. To have the physical practice of a martial arts like, “If I do this, it’ll happen, this is a big piece of the puzzle. Do you find men are receiving this feedback or do you feel him resisting? How do you work through their resistance to get from point A to point B?
There’s a large portion of the community, especially in the conscious community, where they’re very receptive to it and understanding that this is a big shift that’s happening. Being more receptive and present and cultivating these mind and body practices in whatever form they take isn’t necessarily feminine, which I believe maybe in the past was viewed as threatening. The clients I’ve seen and the people I’ve worked with that really have resistance to it, I often find that they’re in A to B paradigm. They’re on a very producer mindset where they’ve shunned off maybe other aspects of their life, their relationships, the communication, emotional maturity and IQ have ceased development. They’ve gone so all in on a job initially or a career to produce money and produce resources because that’s what a man does. I’ve seen this as maybe the biggest impediment to cultivating this essence of presence. That can be, in essence, her. I fully sympathize with people that are maybe thinking, “What are you talking about? What does that even mean?”
Let’s talk about Mystic Misfit. Tell us about that group, what the goal is and the mission, and what your coaching program is.
The Mystic Misfit is myself, Ryan Bowditch and Jordan Bowditch, my two brothers and business partners. We are a lifestyle brand specializing and MCing international retreats and also putting on musical MC as hip hop performances that are all centered on authentic relating. It’s all about radical embodiment. We have training in the Osho lineage with Osho meditations and also Wilhelm Reich’s bioenergetics. It’s very physical, lots of breath work and we combine that with an NLP and non-violent communication and the work of Brad Blanton, Radical Honesty to cultivate a sacred space to a breakthrough program. That’s what the mysticism is all about, it’s a direct connection to the divine or something larger than yourself. Then the misfit aspect is a bit of the counterculture but in a fun and comfortable way. The customary quote is really a rallying cry. It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted so profoundly in a sick society. That’s where the misfit comes in.
When people come to work with you, you said you’re a lifestyle brand, can you explain to us what a lifestyle brand means?
That’s really our main ,and we do this at retreats, workshops and immersions, and at our home in San Diego, is our lifestyle. Life is lived on purpose. It’s all by design. We’re combining every personal development, bio-hacking, nutrition, fitness and mindset hack all at once in our home, and extrapolated out to retreats and containers that we create for people. We broadcast our lifestyle show with that free content and we help specialize in tweaking, tuning people’s lifestyles.
What’s one place you see men need tweaking? Did you see a pattern or something that happens more often than not?
The biggest tweak and the most present one lately for me is the EQ. Coming from a heady, IQ intellectual paradigm where I wanted to be a research psychologist and a psychotherapist, I’ve been cultivating my empathy more. Women in my life recently, friends, business partners and lovers, have really been leveling up my ability to feel. Unlike the realm of the mind, I think each year a lot of the men and get hung up because they want to analyze and problem solve. They want to left brain it, but the realm of the heart’s a bit more wild, the energy is faster moving. Not only does it not explanation, but it doesn’t need your permission to manifest. The emotional roller coaster is that men see women go on, and they freak out or shut down. I found for myself, I wasn’t aware that I had the same emotional roller coasters in myself, very strong feelings that if I didn’t know how to express. They’re finding their way into a negative expression and manifestation. The biggest tweak is men showing up in their career and showing up in love to just fully feel. That maybe the most vulnerable and terrifying thing of all for the armored masculine.
It is a new skill. It’s an uncontrollable skill. It’s being in touch with that feminine side. It’s the unwieldiness of our emotions and how sometimes they’re just so inappropriate and powerful. My journey has been really to find the marriage between my emotions and my intellect. Not to forego either, but to increase the capacity and the connection between the two because then I’m playing with extra tools. I have an extra tool of feeling something and seeing something and the connection between the two. How was your private coaching different from the misfits? What do you do with your private coaching?
In the Mystic Misfit, we’ve launched the Misfit Academy, which is a group coaching program that’s all about social magnetism and daily challenges and a very powerful journey. For my private coaching, I specialize more on radical communication relating upgrades. My clients may come to me making a poor or average transition, ending a relationship, stepping into a new zone of power on their life path. Although I’m officially trained as a transformative approach through an organization and I’ve studied these language modalities, I allow that fast-moving energy of my emotions and intuition to zero in on people and perform something of a psychic surgery. My one-on-one clients are a lot more intense, a lot more radical programs, 30-day programs designed to run a clinic of mental and heart come through in their life and identify blockages and dissolve them with haste.
Thank you for doing the work in the world. Are you ready to do some live coaching?
Yeah. Let’s do it.
I’m going to bring my friend Gil. Hello, Gil.
How are you?
Thank you so much for coming on the show.
Always happy to see you, Robert.
If you’d like to bring an issue or a conversation, how can we make this time most optimized for you?
I’ve been through a lot of changes in the last few months. I begin purpose-driven projects, connections that unfolded and opened up the space for me. What I’m actually working with is purpose and desire. There is that experience or understanding that the masculine purpose is very important and it’s an energetic life-force and focus direction discipline, versus more of the feminine, female desire body space. Most of my life, it’s very strong into purpose. It’s very competitive in business and sports. I served in combat units. It’s been very much that. In the last three years, I started to dive into the inquiry of more of the feminine connection relating and now that something opened up to me, my feeling is I want to follow desire more than purpose. I’m curious how to work with both and if it makes sense. I was just fortunate to go through two very intensive retreats with two of the largest organizations that deal with those inquiries. I’m coming back from San Francisco and Costa Rica pretty energized. I would love to get your perspective.
What I’m hearing the question really is, we’re men. We’re trained to have purpose and now we want to feel more of desire and heart and love. I think it’s a perfect question for Kevin to take. What are the first steps to integrate these two on your journey?
For me, it’s a dynamic balancing act. When I hear that you have really delved deep into focus and purpose direction in the past, and that you also served in a combat unit, this is often the journey for the modern man as the need for those desires and that authenticity to emerge comes up, it’s quite natural that you would come from this cycle very purpose-driven and drifting into the cycle of wanting to follow desire more. I would say really lean into that. That was my journey after being very focused generally into sports and the academia and shifting fully into yoga, viewing dance as these more a bodily and desire-based modalities that can be feminine. Maybe just your ratio should shift80% following that desire, still staying grounded in the purpose, but allowing yourself to really go to that other edge and find the polarity there, the extremes.
I want to throw an “and” on there. What came to me was look at your judgments around feelings and emotions in the feminine. You might have a lot of overt, covert conscious judgments around that, just like we talked about men seeing women’s emotions and having judgments. You might have judgments about your own heart and feeling. Look whether those judgments, conscious and unconscious, are blocking you from actually connecting to them.
Would you consider fear the judgment?
Fear is quite natural and it doesn’t necessarily reflect as judgment. There’s that type of fear that maybe mental that I might label as a judgment. If it’s fear of the unknown, you could gain a lot of value by overcoming that fear. If it’s more grounded in reality and it’s not appropriate for a life situation and there’s a fear there that’s more sociological than biological, I might have more sympathy for it.
Fear is not a judgment, but we often have judgments on top of our fear, and then we’ll have a judgment on top of our judgment about the fear and they’ll have a judgment about judgments. Then we’ll worry about other people’s judgments. Fear is awesome and informative and power. If we have a judgment around it, then we can’t analyze it. If we can’t analyze it, we can’t see what’s happening underneath it. It’s not so much fear is a judgment. To me, it’s what your response is to the fear.
The first thing that came when you said judgments was there’s a fear of losing that identity that, that part of me that was so secured by purpose and goals. Who am I going to be without that? How vulnerable am I going to be? You’re right, it’s the fear of the unknown, the uncertainty. At the end, it’s the mystery that I still feel edgy. There are a lot of sensations in my body around the mystery. That’s how I perceive it, the desire from a much more in the present moment, much more spontaneous, much more responsive to hurt and feelings and the longer term goals. It’s not so much on the space of responsibility. I feel pretty grounded in my responsibilities. I’m more of that now stepping into that, “What am I going to be? How’s it going to look like? How vulnerable can I be?”
I was a straight-laced yuppie when I was 28. Tried and true. I don’t know if I exactly fit with Kevin’s description in the beginning, but I was pretty damn close. Luckily, I wasn’t as aggressive as lot of my corporate brothers. I went to Burning Man and I saw this other side and I was just like, “There’s a whole the world inside of me that’s not spreadsheets and it’s not following the rules. I was like, “I want to break the rules. I don’t want to make out. I want to like expand everything and in the hangover of that, the relationship with my parents were for sure got skewed was challenging and so I want to give you credence that that is a proper fear and something to pay attention to. Of not letting these parts of you out, that’s where I think the cancer comes from because I think you’ve heard the call. There’s an expansion of Gil coming. To live in the fear of keeping your identity could stop that from happening.
That fear is well-founded because the vulnerability, you really release a sense of it and the more I align with it, the more astray I become because it’s so unpredictable, you being in the realm of the rational. If you want the predictability to be, if you want the vouch-safe life that is the stuff of the mind but are very limited, then the vulnerability can be a wakeup call. On the other side of it is that freedom. It’s that freedom to live your purpose in order to expand that we really are seeking. It lies on the other side. It’s a dynamic practice. How uncomfortable can you become where you’re still growing but you’re not so uncomfortable that you know you’re in danger?
I’m curious about the word “seeking” because you said we’re seeking what’s on the other side while knowing that it’s the mystery on the other side that actually drives that energy. I felt like in the past few years, I was very much in a seeker of truth mode. I got into a situation that that became my limitation because I was still coming out from an ideology of seeking something. I’m curious about that space of not even having that ideology.
It’s still operating from somewhat of a duality. It may be a different kind of seeking, a life in the mind, which I was living in my mind until about 21 or 22 fully wanting to be an academic, the duality is always a spectrum. It’s seeking to get to the other side, seeking to get from A to B. It’s all about these linear modalities. This seeking is more like a yearning, something I’ve experienced, that yearning to be fully expressed, fully authentically embody. That lies in this deep emotional work and authenticity and a real honesty in my language and my life. It almost is like a seeking, but it’s not. It’s a non-duality. It’s a bit of a paradox.
Seeker of truth. My teacher likes to say the opposite of the truth is another truth. It’s like, “This is true, but this is my truth.” It’s not a falsehood. I can’t speak for you because I don’t know you that well, but I know that what I thought my life was going to be like is nothing like it is now. I’ve gone through so many cycles and so much adventure and so much change, but all of it started off with me saying yes to letting go of the reins of the facade and the stability that I had co-created. You can make a small change if you want. You have a family and you have responsibilities. I’m not saying grow your hair like Kevin’s and go to Costa Rica and lived down there, that’s an option. The point is you can find that balance between keeping your responsibilities but also expanding your life and taking risks and challenges.
I’ve been realizing lately that if I’m not attending to that and I’m not providing the needs of others around me, then my needs also cannot be met. I need to give what the world needs from me, too. That’s where it goes balance. I’m curious, Robert, in your experience, you went from completely purpose masculine to free. How was it the balance that helps you and what helped you to find that?
That wasn’t exactly my experience. I sometimes might present that, but what happened was I went to Burning Man in 1998 and saw this whole other world and then spent five years transitioning. I was still a computer programmer. I was still having clients. I taught at the University of Phoenix. I had a house and then rent. It was slow transition but this is the important point, even when the door was opened for me to really let go of the past, when OneTaste started and that whole world opened up, I still resisted. I know this now. I was so afraid of letting go of my identity that I had to make a slow transition, which had its pros and cons. I know my journey was slow in the beginning until I finally let go. The point is there’s no set way to do it. The only thing I hope for you that I didn’t have was a consciousness of where you’re putting on the brakes, where I’m saying no out of fear, and how to optimize the journey to make this most pleasurable for me and the people around me. In other words, I was a little whiny around it, like, “You’re offering me this huge adventure and I’m not sure. What will my dad say?” I was whiny for awhile. That was just who I was.
It’s typical for the hero to refuse the call to adventure. On the archetypal class, this is very common. It’s a great point about making the transition with ease and grace, not to rip the Band-Aid all off at once. There’s a lot of accumulated feeling and repression that we all carry from our parents. It’s actually quite healthy to make a very graduated or titrated transition.
Anything else we can serve you with, Gil?
Thank you. I felt the scene. I appreciate the opportunity to have a conversation with things like this.
Thank you so much for coming out. I really appreciate it.
Thanks too. Con mucho gusto.
Any last thoughts or things you want to share with the audience?
Thank you for inviting me. I feel so honored to be on this show with you. I’m sending my love to Gil and his transition to the new paradigm. I feel like we’re in this adolescent stage. It’s very experimental. Western culture, with crypto currency and Trump’s still being in office, it’s reaching the stage where the old way of things not only doesn’t work anymore, but it’s becoming hilariously so that it doesn’t work. The experimentation must continue and it must be grounded. The more authentic and heartfelt it can be, the more powerful we can step into our power. I see that for our individual lives and also in our collectives, the new breed of startups, the new breed of visionaries that are out in the world, people like you that are spreading this message and keeping the dialogue and the conversation going. This is going to become more and more important as we go into even more chaos and uncertainty and these old patterns dying away.
I’m really honored of everything that you just said. Thank you. How do people find you? How do people connect with the Mystic Misfit and yourself and your coaching?
For me, it’s KevinOrosz.com. Online, I go by Oroszlan which means lion in Hungarian, so Facebook.com/KevinOroszlan, @Kev_Oroszlan on Instagram. To see the work that me and my brothers and the retreats we throw, that’s going to be MysticMisfit.com.
Thank you so much for coming on the show.
Thank you for having me. I’m wishing you all good blessings there in California.
Thank you so much everyone. Thank you for the regulars. Thank you so much, Gil, for being transparent and honest and sparking a conversation. If you’d like more shows, please visit us at TuffLove.Live. As always, if you get turned on by the show and you want to give us a little rating, please head to iTunes, Stitcher, or wherever you listen to your podcast and give us a little loving with a five star and some nice words. I will be much grateful for that. We are constantly looking for guests to be coached, coachees. If you want to come on the show and get some wisdom by myself and/or our guest, please email Summer at Summer@KandellConsulting.com. Thanks so much. Thanks to my muse, Morgan, for her bright lights. Take care.
Thank you so much for joining us for tough love. Thank you Gil, for coming on the line and being vulnerable and asking you questions. Thank you so much Kevin, for your viewpoint, your work in the world and everything. I’m grateful. I love you. Go forth. Get married. Get some nookie. Take care.
- Kevin Orosz
- Mystic Misfit
- @Kev_Oroszlan – Instagram
- Polly Young
About Kevin Oroszlan
Kevin is a (r)Evolutionary Coach, Freestyle MC, and Yoga Teacher. After forgoing a PhD in Psychology, he quit corporate America and backpacked through Thailand, India, and Nepal on a quest to understand Eastern & Western mysticism as it related to his personal myth. Kevin is a student of modern psychology and ancient philosophy, utilizing the yogic science of mind and a “weaponized” intuition with his clients to facilitate transformation. He lives in Encinitas, California when he is not traveling facilitating retreats, workshops, and MCing international events.