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Mindful Living and Sustainable Enlightenment with Johann Urb on the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast #62

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00:00:00 Johann Urb
We give ourselves permission and each other permission to go 110%, meaning we scream, we cry, we shake. We would give the body, the unconscious mind, a way to express without the limiting factor of our conscious mind or the the critical brain. Why am I feeling this way? You know, why am I making these sounds? This is still this is inappropriate. What other people thinking right? We take this away out of the way so the rest of our being, which is the 95%, can express whatever stress has been holding and release it for transformation.

00:00:42 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Welcome to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. I’m your host, Matt Kuehlhorn, and I’m excited to have you join me as I interview community members and business leaders from the communities in which I live, work and serve through my business, Kooler Garage Doors. We’re going to bring you highlights on characters in our communities. Why? Because community matters, and I want to know more about who is behind our business and leadership in order to understand and support the community fabric that our relationships make up. And collectively, we can build stronger communities that support our lifestyles, our youth and our health. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast, I’m Your host, Matt Kuehlhorn. Today I’m sitting down with a new friend, Johann Herb, who is the founder of the Pyramid Breath Method and Spiritual Guide and teacher in beaming in from across the globe. Johann, welcome.

00:01:42 Johann Urb
Thank you so much, Matt. It’s such a joy to be here.

00:01:45 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Oh my gosh, thank you. In preparation for this, you know, I just sat down. Quietly in this office and getting really centered, I felt like our conversation, you know, could go in so many different directions. I’ve practiced your pyramid breath method and have gone through with my wife the the Tantra course that that you were part of and I just really, really appreciate it. What I love about it is the focus on the internal game and. I’d like to start out by just getting a little bit of a synopsis of your story. Where did you grow up?

00:02:25 Johann Urb
So I was born in the good old Soviet Union. You know, some of your listeners might be young enough to not know what that was, but it was a place that sucks a lot. And at the fresh edge of 10, my mom and I were able to leave the country. And I’m Finland. My mom and I lived there for the next seven years and then I moved to the States when I was 17. And part of the reason what I do now is because when I was living in Finland, so in the Soviet Union, basically it was like a giant prison, like once you left to like you were cut off, right? This is pre Internet everything. And so I was very tight with my family, but when I moved to Finland, I felt really alone and to the Fins at the time, you know, bless them, but I was like the enemy, right. Even though I was Estonian, they they were like, oh, you’re just a Soviet, you know, even though the Russians had taken our country and our freedom. And so there was a lot of struggle and strife and loneliness and depression and difficulty and how it happened on the past of of spirituality was because I was literally subtitle and depressed and I began to meditate by myself at the age of 14 as sort of a the only thing that I could afford to do. And just you know by going in within and I started to have these wild experiences where you know I felt like my problems became to dissipate or my perspective became different and began to change. And I had an out of body experience when I was 15 that completely like shattered my reality of what is real and what isn’t and what we can and can’t perceive. And and so it got me really, really curious what what is there, what more is there that I’m not aware of currently. And that got me into reading the bug of Akita, the Doctor, Ching the Mapata, and really got into Easter philosophy and mistresses. And because I felt like they kind of spoke to it, you know, to the unseen, much more so than so the Western religions. I wasn’t aware of the mystical aspects of the Western religions at the time. And so that was sort of my my, my portal into this life that I now fully embody and live and.

00:04:53 Matthew Kuehlhorn
What do you think the mission for you is?

00:04:56 Johann Urb
How would you define that my mission on this planet? Yeah, you know that’s a great question. And to me as I see it today, as I feel into today, is to to share with folks out there practices that are practical and fun and easy and addictive in the best possible way. How to create a state change how to how to change our belief systems. How to not just go and, you know, because you can go and have these peak life experiences where you go and to eat mushrooms at Uayawaska or go to a men’s retreat or women’s retreat or whatever else, right? But you going somewhere to do something. And then the question is how can you bring that back into your life and live from that place. And for so many folks their daytoday, mundane reality versus this peak event are very different. And so my mission is how can I share with you and not how. But I want to share with the world what I have found for myself which is sustained practical fun mysticism and ritual and and practices that each day you’re you’re getting that hit you’re remembering you know because what I might just says like it’s easy to get enlightened. It’s difficult to remain enlightened you know because and the lightened it’s it’s a loaded word anyway. But really, it’s like it’s it’s easy to remember when you do certain practices or we’re taking certain rituals that we are by, but it’s also just as easy to forget. So for me, it’s like every day going back to the source, connecting with the source, remembering who I truly am, where I come from, what I’m here to do. And through that then sustainably sort of living from that place of joy and love, even though sometimes things are difficult and challenging, how can we layer in gratitude, awareness, ritual appreciation, and alchemize that energy into creative energy, into, you know, another expansion and so forth and so forth. So that’s what I believe.

00:07:04 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Beautiful, man. You know, I’m still a little bit unclear as to who the real listeners are for Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. I’m always surprised when people let me know that they are actually listening. Yeah, it’s fascinating to me, but the conversations that I engage in, our lifestyle focus, it’s Better Business, it’s living longer and it’s community connection and you’re speaking to all of these. I want to just dive into breath work specific for a moment because my understanding and my experiences that this is a potential portal to. What you’re referencing as far as enlightenment, as far as connecting, as far as remembering who I am and there’s a lot of power in there. So like probably many, you know, I used to numb out with cannabis and alcohol and when I really started engaging breath work and this is relatively recent where this gives me the state change that I was ultimately potentially seeking and just ultimately numbing, right. So I’ve actually. Increased my capacity of feeling, which is feeling the real peaks and the real lows. So you know your your narrative on your website. I encourage everybody listening to go to Johann’s site. We’ll have links in here. There’s there’s a really good description, You’re talking about these peak experiences and then you in. In the way I’m I’m reading this and extracting from it. It’s almost a maturation and you kind of get this rhythm. And so you’ve been doing this daily for decades and I guess from your experience, because breath is like popular, right? We’ve got Wim, Hoff and we’ve got all these different methodologies. Can you explain? The Pyramid breath just a little bit in and talk about some of the mechanics as to why it works. Why is it effective.

00:09:18 Johann Urb
Yeah, great question. And you know there’s so many different breath work techniques out there actually like to call pyramid breath breath play and it’s just, you know, we all work hard in our world. It’s like you got to work hard to achieve things and you know, and so even just adding in the thing of it, being playful and joyful or it can be like kids again in a way, right. And then And when we, especially for the masculine, you know, we somehow have forgotten how to play, how to be playful because it’s considered like more feminine or weak or, you know, we created all these stories around it. But if you guys have ever done Pyramid Breath, you know, it’s like wild and crazy and we’re sounding and screaming and shaking and loaning and having all these experiences. And So what are the ways it differs from other practices out there? And there’s many, many, many, many wonderful practices which I’m all grateful for. And you know, to each there’s a value and a time and a place and how a pyramid breath is different is you don’t need an hour to do it. You don’t need to lay down to do it. You it’s done. Seated it’s you can do it in, you know 3 minutes, 5 minutes. So it’s very very very practical for most folks who are like you know I’m a dad and I got a job or you know I don’t have time is the is the biggest thing for a lot of people. And so when you start building that new habit, if your story is, I don’t have time for a longer practice and I will only get the effect, you know, at 40 minute mark, then you’re likely not going to do it unless you’re super disciplined and you know and you’re really like going for it and have time. But if you don’t, you’re going to want something that’s going to give you that state change, you know, going from feeling down or tired or depressed to feeling energized and joyful and hopeful and remembering in that moment, Oh my gosh, like there’s so many possibilities and amazing things and life is happening for me, not to me. Then pyramid breast is really for you. And if you want to go deeper into it and do a 10 or 15 or 20 or 30 or 40 minute practice, you can really tap into a deeper sense of sensuality and shamanic States and you know, get really, really wild. And also in the short practices, full permission and get wild and free. And one of the things I love about Pyramid Breath is we give ourselves permission and each other permission to go 110%. Meaning we scream, we cry, we shake. We would give the body, the unconscious mind, a way to express without the limiting factor of our conscious mind or the the critical brain. Why am I feeling this way? You know, why am I making these sounds? This is stupid, this is inappropriate. What other people thinking right? We take this away, out of the way so the rest of our being, which is the 95%, can express whatever stress has been holding and release it for transformation. And then within Pyramid, breath is the component of alchemizing this energy into creative force. And now it’s not just like we’re not getting rid of the anger, frustration, and anxiety. Whatever else we’ve been experienced it. Rather, we are chemically transforming it to useful energy. So now I can go and do my job better, or be better at my relationship or my art or whatever else I want to do right? Because energy doesn’t get destroyed. Energy gets transformed. And the other thing I would say is the way that the the pyramid breath method is designed is we kind of start by shaking things up kind of like almost a little bit like strongly or aggressively if that’s the approach that you take to it. And then we get really embodied and central and into our feelings and then express it all. And then the final part is the, the creation part, what I call creation meditation, where again, we take all this energy, right. So there’s this arc where you don’t just like lead your body and have this big experience. You don’t, you come back, you’re like, wow, that was awesome. But how to reply this, right. Rather we stay in the body, we stay seated and stay in the body. The idea is that incorporate all of our self and expand our container and then create from that place.

00:13:41 Luke Hylton
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00:14:22 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Okay. So let me play a little devil’s advocate here. And, you know, I’m thinking that there’s some listeners who may have never experienced any of this. And I think in our society, the West specifically, we do so good at not being in our body. We try to project, we tie it, stay out external, bring in substances, whatever it might be. Have you seen Well before I get real devil’s advocate, have you seen? A progression or I would imagine just people would have just a wide variety of experiences. But when people do start, you know, dipping toes into this, what’s it like for them? What have you experienced from from your students? And yeah, is there a progression?

00:15:11 Johann Urb
Yes, there is. There absolutely is. And one of the we just are are finishing our first teacher training program right now and that’s one of the best examples of really you know people that show up for that or people that are really really committed. And we had a bunch of folks that are just done a little bit of Jeremy Brass and you know dabbled and other things as well. And I think they didn’t even know if necessarily they wanted to be teachers. They were just attracted to the commitment and the discipline that they knew they had to basically take on. And some of the most profound transformations I’ve seen in our teacher training or, you know, folks who have felt really like held back in their life, like life is happening to me. I’m a victim. These are all words that they’re using. You know, I don’t. I don’t. I’ve never expressed my rage. I’ve never had the courage to say what I really mean. You know, I’ve played small. It held back. I’ve been passive aggressive, You know, like all these things that so many of us do, myself included, that that was me. And to see them, you know, at first it’s like weird. I’m having to make these sounds and these noises and shake my body and and at first, like the the identity really, really Sharples with it because this is identity death. Like this is a way to let go of the previous version of who we’ve been and create a new version of who we get to become a moment to moment. And again, identity is fluid. It’s not the static thing that we’re told that we are. And so to see the identity deaths, right? And you were held in a container, especially in this teacher training container where we are all holding each other through these transformations and transmutations and ego deaths. And to see we’ve just had a bunch of people graduate and to see like who they are now versus who they were several months ago, Rachel and I literally cry. We just cry because it’s so profound and so beautiful to see these folks that have been so shut down, so shamed around their sexuality, sensuality, their voice, their body, whatever else. And now it’s like this beautiful expression of the lightness of freedom, of boldness and courage. You know there’s this woman who was a just got she’s got three kids. One of her babies has been with her basically the whole time and she’s just blossomed into this powerhouse of a teacher and like this embodied sensual, beautiful, responsible, feminine who is not holding any part of her chill back. And it’s just that’s what I, I feel like I’ve come here to do go back to the mission like that is what I want more of. Right. Because I’m just like goosebumps like Oh my God like yes. So that’s that’s that’s what I I’ve seen and experienced and that’s why I do this, you know, for myself as well As for my students. And that’s a great question. You know, I believe that everything happens from inside out. And that’s one of the biggest sort of misbeliefs in our sort of materialistic world that we’ve been told is, you know, because it’s like if you spend a lot of time inside, you’re not buying a lot of things or surfing the Internet or you’re not clicking, you know, and that the advertising dollars aren’t coming in. So we’re really programmed to look outwards all the time, and what we’re really seeking is not out there as we know. And you know, success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure. You can be the richest, wealthiest person in the world, have all the cars, the houses, and still be the most miserable, lonely, sad person in the world. Because fulfillment doesn’t come from without, it comes from within. And so if you’re just looking outwards to define that feeling of love and connection and peace, you’re sadly going to fail. And so and now I’m not the other way, by the way, if you just go inside, inside, inside, which used to be the very sort of, you know, old traditions that we know of, you go to The Cave and meditate, you, you know, isolate, like I don’t think it’s there either. I think it’s the balance of the two. And unfortunately in our, especially in our Western society and sort of just the current society around the world right now, again we have these amazing devices that we’re using right now doing this thing and then they’re awesome. But we’ve forgotten about the inner practices and if there isn’t a balance like with anything, you’re going to get lost in it. And that’s why, you know if you’re constantly in comparison mode like oh I’m not good enough, I’m not pretty enough, I’m not smart enough, I’m not rich enough, I’m not this enough and that enough. And you don’t know that person that you’re following is likely having all sorts of self esteem issues because they. You know, follow somebody who has more followers of more money or let alone they don’t know that that person actually is also looking for the thing outside and it’s this thing that it, it just leads to nowhere. And so if we don’t look within and again we don’t make these practices fine, make them attainable, sustainable and and and addictive in the best possible way. So you get that state change, you’re not going to do them because the outside is so interesting. So it’s so important to find a practice that makes it inside just as interesting or more interesting as the outside is. So you can balance the two. And through that you will find a beautiful spot in the center where it’s just like life is just magic.

00:21:02 Matthew Kuehlhorn
I love the perspective of the internal, the external. I mean, it’s almost bringing 2 paradoxes together. The masculine, the feminine. They play both within us and. To heal and to marry both of those internally is a is a powerful component to life. The one, the one question as far as breath work goes, What makes breath work?

00:21:28 Johann Urb
Whether it’s the Pyramid method or Wimhoff or any of the other magical methods out there, different than hyperventilating because you’re doing it with intention, right? There is A and I never start a practice or recommend anyone begin a practice of any sort without intention. One thing that we found during COVID, you know, when everything shut down and we couldn’t see each other, I couldn’t be in the same room, was how powerful intention and prayer is. And when we have these ways of connecting now from all over the world, right, we people can TuneIn from Japan, from Africa, from the US and Europe, from Australia. Wherever you are from space. When we align our our intentions, magic happens. I always say it’s Better Together. Like if you can get more people to practice with you, whatever your practices, whatever your ritual is that you’re doing, the energy is so potent, even though you’re thousands of miles apart. We are energetically connected. And so these practices, especially if you are not just practicing alone, if you have the the gift that you are practicing with more people, even online, it’s so potent for a magic and state change. It’s like, you know, when you’re just being like I’m just going to just breathe for no reason, you’re going to feel something. But it’s very different when you add in the prayer, the intention, the why am I doing right. Knowing your why, you know it is maybe it’s to make more money or to feel better in your body or have more self esteem or to be better communicator. Always give it a reason and a lie and then you know what you’re moving towards. We are meaning making machines literally. Yes. I think life is just kind of happening right. We’re the ones that give it meaning and so that’s why having adding the intention and is so powerful. I love that.

00:23:33 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Well said, scientific question. Yeah you you had mentioned the devices and I see that I can I can observe my own self like getting a kick off of likes and and different posts and I understand that it be as being a a dopamine kick and through breath work is that engaging you know one of those hormones I would imagine it’s not necessarily dopamine it could be serotonin oxytocin do you have scientific knowledge and.

00:24:05 Johann Urb
What that’s really bringing up physio. I think that the best one of the best people to sort of look to for that information is Andrew Huberman. He’s he’s done a bunch of podcasts on that. I’m not never been like the science guy And even though you know even in our teacher training and like guys like if this is the way, the modality that really turns you on, like these are the resources, right. And one of which is for me is Andrew Huberman. He’s amazing at it. If you guys don’t know him, he’s got an amazing podcast. He’s you know a neuroscientist and and so I believe in in in just in my experience, personal experience and seeing you know the experience of my students, whatever those chemicals are are named whether it’s still put me in a serotonin or or anything else that gets activated. You will feel a state change just on a level of like alkalinity and Wimhof talks about this a lot. It’s like we go from the civic state which is like stressed out state to an alkaline state which is it’s a more expansive state right. And and going from like not breathing properly. You know most of us adults are like shallow breathers, right? Especially if we’re stressed out and anxious, we’re up here unless we’re like super anxious and hyperventilating. But you still like stress hormones and so when we deep breathe, we’re just like using all the receptors in our lungs and our brain clears out of our blood oxygen goes up like so many good things are happening when we were doing it. But I wouldn’t be able to right now name the the specific like molecules or or hormones that get activated except like I just call it the happiness hormone. Like you will feel better, yes.

00:25:52 Matthew Kuehlhorn
I love that. And it’s it’s absolutely a state change, no doubt about it. Yeah. And it can be a healthy habit for sure.

00:26:04 Johann Urb
Yeah. And it’s guys, It’s, it’s, it’s once you learn the tool, it’s free, right? Which almost like in our modern world is like, oh, it’s free and must not be valuable because I’m a price on it, right? Well, hey, join my program and join another program and pay a monthly thing. So feel like you know you’re you’re paying for it and maybe that adds value to it or whatever. But it’s truly one of the most powerful, scientifically proven practices. To stay healthy, to upliver your life, to heal yourself, cure yourself. Like the the benefits are basically endless. And you know, when you look at whim off who’s you know, a masterful modern day, you already super down to earth dude. But it was has like cities, which it is a such great word for, like powers do those magical powers, like those are the things that you can achieve when you do these practices. Just know that you know by simply practicing and being staying committed, you will activate parts of yourself that you didn’t even know that we’re there. We’re such magical beings and there’s so much to us that we’re not even aware of. And you will be able to access those parts and bring them online. Time. When we do that, our life gets so much better, so much more interesting and so much more fun.

00:27:24 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Yeah, what I love is the, you know, again, I’m just hearing it come through is, is the focus on play, right. Like when we’re engaging with our bodies through this breath work, we actually can tap in. I’ve seen this to where this body, this little bag of. Water is like fun and it is magical and it’s something to be curious about because it’s endless.

00:27:52 Johann Urb
It’s endless, yeah. So one of my mantras that I learned not so long ago, and I can’t believe I didn’t know it before, and it completely, radically shifted my perspective on everything is life can get better and better forever and ever. And when I heard that, I was like, that’s an option what you know. And when we do these practices, rituals. And that again is the matter of the focus and the desire. And that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be happy now. No, you should absolutely be happy now. I’m grateful for for the moment, however, to know that we can forever expand, right? That we have infinite capability to expand makes life so freaking amazing and exciting. Because every moment, every new moment is an opportunity for that whether you choose to take it or not. You know that the option is that and so each time that I do my practice which is at least once a day, I often also teach and so I do it more often is man, it’s like a whole new expansion point. I let a part of me die, you know, and another part of me be born. And I’m like, looking at the world through these new eyes. And. And so it’s this forever process of renewal which keeps life so interesting because so many folks are bored or they’re just like, life sucks. And so you’re looking again at the TV or somewhere else. Where is that thing to get right, that dopamine hit? You’re still the one that’s producing the dopamine. It’s inside of you. So when you do these practices, things get way, way, way better. Yeah.

00:29:40 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Great mantra.

00:29:40 Johann Urb
Thank you for sharing that, Yeah.

00:29:43 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Johann, how can listeners find you? Learn from you? Work with you.

00:29:50 Johann Urb
So easiest thing is to either go to Instagram @urbjohann or go to my website and that’s how you can reach out to me and and find me. And it’s my greatest honor. Enjoy to to guide folks you know to a better, finding a better version of themselves, creating empowering habits. One of my favorite things. And this has been really, really tough pass for me. But because of it, I have a certain mastery in it now, which is communication and what my wife and I call code emotional communication. Because so often we don’t know how to communicate with ourselves and with others without, you know, shaming, blaming, guilting and shutting down. And so we just don’t what we do and it’s just horrible, bad and you know things blow up and so we don’t. And and and my whole mission like we’re discovering here is how can we truly make this life the most profound, beautiful, magnificent experience, sustainable experience. How can we be sober and how can we be kind and loving and remember that at our essence we are divine love and bodied. We have chosen this experience as a divine come here experience, their own magnificence. So if you want to experience that, give me a call the guy.

00:31:17 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Well, I have to give it another plug. You know, we didn’t talk a lot about relationships, masculine, feminine. You know, my wife has had our own journey. We’ve been together for a couple of decades now and it’s been beautiful all in congratulations and yeah, man. The the course that you and Rachel put together, Tantra of Life is very powerful. And I just wanted to mention that I know we could probably go another hour in that alone because there’s so much depth there. And in my journey there’s been a lot of healing with the feminine and I’m constantly working on the integration and the communication and life gets better and better forever and ever, man like that is. Just such a cool course. So I just wanted to make sure listeners knew that there was a resource out there to help develop and strengthen relationships.

00:32:12 Johann Urb
And it’s really about the relationship internally that then gets, yeah, heartburned. Yeah. I think that in my experience, our Tantra Life course is some of the best bang for the buck out there. There’s so much in there and it’s great. It’s it’s we’re so proud of it and we’re actually writing a book about it right now. So you look out for that. That’s come into and we have found, as you just spoke to so beautifully, Matt is like when you master code, emotional communication, when you master the way that you, you become a master of your own energy and the energetic of the dynamic of your relationship. And it is literally for me, like experiencing the divine every single day in this orgasmic, beautiful expression of that again gets better and better forever and ever. Like my wife and I have been together for 10 years now and sex is the best it’s ever been. Our connection, our communication. We’re obsessed with each other in the best possible way like not get enough of each other. You know instead of what I had in my mind before and what I saw in the world is like goes the other way. You know sex goes away and kind of put up with each other and you’re this grumpy and you’re and and to be able to hold that new paradigm or that different paradigm and it’s not just like magic or actual tools and ways to cultivate that and and so it doesn’t become this like oh it’s just your perfect match. Like there’s no such thing. Your shadows will come out. Your shit will come out. Your darkness will come out when you find a person who is willing to look at it with you. And then it’s like, how do you speak to it? How are you able to actually not run away or just shut it down and learn from it and grow from it and again die of death who you thought you were and then become something completely beyond belief? You know, marvelous and beautiful in your expression and your awareness. And it’s just fasting. Ever.

00:34:19 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Oh man, so good. We will have all of your links in our show notes. And for the listeners, I really, really encourage you to go check out Johan and his work and engage with him. This is not the last time you and I will be speaking. Johan. I really appreciate our conversation. And so thank you so much for today. Thank you so much for the gifts that you bring into the world. I just. I really appreciate you, ma’am.

00:34:46 Johann Urb
Likewise, brother. It’s it’s beautiful to feel your heart. Thank you for you and I’m excited to continue this conversation and my friends better and better, forever and ever. Let’s do it.

00:34:58 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Forever and ever love it. Thank you, brother.

00:35:00 Johann Urb
Thank you.

00:35:03 Matthew Kuehlhorn
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you so much for listening to the Kooler Lifestyle Podcast. We count on your subscriptions, your likes, your shares, and I encourage you to do that. Now, if you’re watching on YouTube, Go ahead and subscribe. Lower right hand button. If you’re on audio, download this, share it, and we look forward to having you on the next one.