Glamour

Date Published: February 2 2021

Written By: Virág Vida

Glamour

Date published: February 2 2021

Written by: Virág Vida

At my favorite coffee shop in Venice, CA, a handsome, tall, athletic guy was lining up for coffee. From his sun-bleached blonde hair, and tanned skin, I knew right away that he must be a true California surfer boy, just like the ones you see in magazines and lifestyle commercials. The only thing missing from him was a board tucked under his arm. I was making some phone calls to my Hungarian friends, when the “surfer guy” walked up to me and said, “Hi, I heard you speaking Hungarian. I’m Csaba. Csaba Lucas. ”

As I took all of him in, the title of the classic movie The Tall Blonde Man with One Black Shoe, popped into my mind immediately.
However, Csaba wasn’t wearing only one shoe; he wasn’t wearing any shoes. “My feet don’t sense the proper stimuli if I wear shoes”,
explained the former canoeist from the small Hungarian city of Győr, when he noticed that I was staring at his feet. “Shoes kill the sensory mechanism of the foot, so the feet and brain can’t communicate properly.”
I soon learned that Csaba also runs marathon randomly, barefoot,
which he said was not a “big deal”.  He claimed that it was only part of the whole, complex system in which he strives to live in harmony with nature. I didn’t question his authenticity when he told me that this is his job, too. With his firm, MAW (Modern Age Warriors),
Csaba – as a well-known coach in Los Angeles – represents and passes on this ideology and the related techniques to his clients, who are some of the world’s most influential businessmen and athletes. But what exactly do these training techniques mean?
The answer is not simple. Csaba himself has created a complex system and an adaptable therapy together with it, which radically changes the way his clients relate to themselves. He offers a kind of inner, spiritual, and physical, self-knowledge journey – but not
by way of a luxury cruise, but by intense, white water rafting – on the most awesome, inner waters. “We set the limits to what we are capable of. My job is to try to show my clients how they can push further and expand their own boundaries that the family, culture, workplace and social environment have created around them. When you live your life in a given culture, in your own environment, these limitations surround your whole life and it’s pretty hard to break out of them. ”

These trips are not meant to be only metaphoric. Csaba takes his clients – with their consent, of course – on life-altering (some may jokingly say “threatening”, however, all necessary precautions are in place at the start of every journey to ensure the utmost safety of everyone) journeys into the deepest depths of mother nature. He has been to the middle of the rainforests in South America, to an African prairie, and to a part of the Death Valley desert where very few care (or dare) to go. “When I’m planning a trip with a client, regardless if they are leaders of a giant company, national team captains, or a stay-at-home mother, the journeys are always about tearing them out of their usual environment, i.e. out of their comfort zone – and removing them from the limitations they have created for themselves physically, socially, and mentally”.
  “Have you ever been in a life-threatening situation?” I asked. “Many times. There was a memorable case in Africa. I took one of my clients to the jungle and we followed lion footprints. We stopped to talk, as we got caught up in a conversation about environmental politics.  The monkeys above us started shouting and carrying on, because they were bothered by us lingering around, so we continued on.  Our plan was to cut around and take a short cut to get ahead of the lions, only to realize that at this point the lions were tracking us.  We came to a clearing and were met with two male lions, approximately 100 meters away from us.  In retrospect we realize that curiosity got the best of the lions, and they were on their way back to see why the monkeys were causing such a ruckus. This is the moment when you have to know how to behave like an apex predator”- he declared confidently. “I imagine your adrenaline level shot up…” I declared, gob smacked. “I could describe it as a situation when you are definitely not thinking about what you are going to eat for dinner later… or whether you’ll arrive at the airport on time or not…” he added with a smirk.  But Csaba and his companions survived the situation. “It’s very important to believe in yourself. We had to make the lions feel as if we were controlling the situation. In this type of situation, you can’t run away or move back slowly. You need to communicate to make the lions feel that you are the predator who is above them. In any given life-threatening situation with my clients, it is quite useful that I’ve gone through similar situations before and that I’m an expert at what I’m doing. I can’t be in the same mental condition as they are. I have to set an example. ”  
Then, for a moment, I imagined an executive- running their business from an all-glass office in a skyscraper- as they face an African lion, unshaven, in dirty, sweaty clothes. I ask Csaba to tell me some names, but he refuses my request. “I can’t mention names, but I can say teams. For example, in the past I worked with Borussia Dortmund players, with the Los Angeles Lakers and with Canada’s world champion women’s softball team.” I ask him immediately if it’s different to work with women. “that’s an interesting question,” – he stops to think for a moment – “What technique I choose doesn’t depend on whether I’m working with a woman or a man. The technique always depends on the client, regardless if they are individual people or they belong to a team, and I always feel that I need to re-discover the wheel again and again. I need to find the key to the person, I need to develop personal strategies so that we can work together successfully ”.

In the course of his work, Csaba not only passes on his empirical experiences of self-knowledge journeys to his clients, but he also rediscovers his own boundaries and hidden treasures again and again. When I ask him where his boundaries are, he gives me an interesting answer. “For the past twenty years, I have had the opportunity to work with shamans in the rainforests. Their knowledge comes from an unbroken culture where knowledge passes from father to son, and this knowledge goes back hundreds or even thousands of years. These people are sensitive to vibrations, energy waves and they can show you everything. I was shown my boundaries by them. If they lead you, you can go to the other side as well. You die in every way, also physically. It is difficult to explain this because such a state does not exist in our civilized, modern world. You can’t search for it on Google. It feels as if you looked at your childhood photos of yourself in your old age, then your youth photos, middle age, and old age. Every time you would say it’s you. The interesting thing is that something connects these four stages of life, despite of the fact that all your cells you had in your early ages already died by the time the next photo was taken of you. And yet you feel that there is something that connects those cells, which existed, but no longer exist. So then, who can say that when you die at the age of a hundred, you will completely cease to exist, just because the cells that formed your physical reality earlier are dead …? So this is what can be experienced through a ritual of a traditional shaman. And when you experience it, you are released. Because you realize that your boundaries don’t end where your cells end. But there is something else … ” his words resonated heavily in the light California sunshine and for a moment I found myself in the endless space of the interpretation of existence. Csaba carried on explaining.

“The abilities that are in every person’s genetics are far bigger than we can imagine, at first. For example, if I ask a few people if they could run a half Marathon, there will always be some who will say: “No way!”. Others will say: “Maybe”, and again others will say that “Sure”. When I ask the same question about a full Marathon, nearly everybody will say that they would be exerting themselves in extreme ways to do that. But I know a man who ran 170 Marathons in 115 days in the Sahara … ”

Csaba’s company wasn’t really shaken by the pandemic either, although a trip to Africa and South America had to be canceled.
“The pandemic didn’t change the format of my company or my work much because I work a lot on video with my clients. We traveled with my clients inside the US the same way as we did in other countries and continents before the pandemic. We’ve been to the off-the-beaten tracks of Yosemite National Park several times, the Redwoods National
park, and also in some remote, challenging spots in Death Valley”.  I couldn’t miss this charming iron man sharing his own advice with me on fighting the epidemic. “People think they can protect themselves with face masks, rubber gloves, and sanitisers. Obviously these are important because the only thing we can do now is ’put out the fire’, but we don’t know much about this virus itself, we can’t really control it. What we can control in our lives, however, is that we need to build a very strong immune system. People think that it’s normal if we sometimes get a cold, if we get sick at times. But this is not normal. A healthy person never gets sick. In nature you can’t find a lion, which has been sick for a week because it has a cold. I think that we have to take care of ourselves not with modern tools, but we have to follow the word of nature, as we are part of it. We don’t have to look back far, it was only some decades ago when we lived in much greater harmony with nature and we weren’t so far away from it as we are today. My childhood memory in Hungary, for example, is that we ate seasonal fruit. Or the winter ’pig killing’, to provide a substantial amount of meat, is still a tradition there. Here in Los Angeles, people can no longer really remember when fruit has a season, because for half a century, everything has been available in supermarkets, no matter the season. This is the paved way to get further and further away from nature.”

But Csaba was not always a child of nature; he had also been discovered by Hollywood; between 2001 and 2013, he starred in several American productions, e.g. in I Spy with Eddie Murphy and Owen Wilson, or in The Gossip Girl series. He also met with his wife, the successful serial actress, Winter Ave Zoli, in the film industry. The beautiful American actress and Csaba have two children. Luckily, the popular coach, the happy husband and father of four never draws the long bow; he always knows ‘where his limits’ are. He reassured me, “You know, if I spend the night with my friends, I’d rather miss the morning run …” he said laughing. “We should never exploit our body and afflict ourselves just because of a maniac sense of duty. It is also among the rules of nature.”