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About Psychic Matters Podcasts

Ann Théato, International Psychic Medium and Spiritual Tutor, investigates psychic development, mediumship techniques, and paranormal science, so that you can come to understand your own innate psychic ability and expand your knowledge, whilst learning to develop a curious mind.

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This Week’s Episode

“Isn’t it sad that we all don’t feel safe enough, that society will hold us if we grieve? That instead of people looking at me as though I’m mad, people will come and hold me and sit with me and grieve with me. I think the word abiding is a really powerful word when we talk about love.  Just to be alongside, to abide with someone in something and not have to do anything but just be with them in that grief or praise or tears, whatever it is.” – Matt Hopwood

 

PM 060
A HUMAN LOVE STORY

This episode is everything you need to know about love.  Matt Hopwood, of www.ahumanlovestory.com  discusses how he experiences meeting people exactly where they are in life, how he helps people to understand that they are loved and how important it is that we all hold safe space for anyone to be deeply heard without judgement; to enable them to share the story of who they are, how they feel, and how they experience connection and love in this world. 

 

You’ll Learn

 

  • How to hold, love and honour another person
  • The importance of giving people an opportunity to be heard
  • How to be present for other people
  • Why listening without judgement is a powerful tool for holding others
  • The importance of being still & being present in the moment
  • Why judgement is the antithesis of love
  • Why it is important to express our grief
  • How we can help others to express their grief
  • The importance of Elders in a society
  • Why the most profound life is extraordinarily hard
  • Why energy gets stuck in the body when we go through trauma

Episode 60 Resources

Here are some resources referred to in Episode 059, which you may find helpful.

Matt Hopwood Website – A Human Love Story

Matt Hopwood Book – And The Girl Called To The Moon What Is Love?

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ahumanlovestory/

Twitter @ahumanlovestory

Sacred Hoop – Journey Into Consciousness

Island of Harris 

Angel Kyodo Williams 

Alastair McIntosh

Mayan Civilisation

 

Thanks for listening.

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Or ask a question over on Psychic Matters! Podcast Facebook page

TRANSCRIPT

Ann 

Hello, everybody, my name is Ann Theato, and welcome to episode 60 of the Psychic Matters podcast.  Today is the 24th of March, and for me, it’s an incredibly significant day, it’s a day that will never come again, thank goodness.  But I wanted to mark it in some way. Those of you who’ve been following along with this podcast since it first began two years ago, will follow some of my journey, weaved throughout those episodes and one of the things that happened to my family, was that my beautiful brother Paul, passed away last year at the age of 57. And obviously, that devastated our family. As, as it does devastate families when, when our loved ones pass away, and today, on the 24th of March, I am exactly the same age that Paul was, when he died. He never lived to be any older than I am today. And tomorrow, I will be older than him for the first time ever. And I have, I found it really difficult to get my head around. And it’s been something that’s just been making me pace the floor and not sleep at night. And, I don’t know, it’s funny, isn’t it? Isn’t it funny that we can still be so devastated about somebody passing over a year on and how grief can really affect us? And so, what I wanted to do with this podcast, is create an episode that celebrates the love we have for people, because that’s what makes the world go round. I want to celebrate the love I have for Paul; I want to celebrate the life that he lived here and the love that he had for his wife, and his son and the rest of our family and his friends, and everybody who came in contact with him on a daily basis. And what better way to do that than to create an episode all about love, and as divinely inspired by the universe, that is just so intelligent and wonderful, I was brought into contact with my guest today, Matt Hopwood, Matt is the most incredible person you could ever wish to meet. He has a website called a human love story.com. And he’s an expert in meeting people exactly where they are. He’s an expert in helping people understand that they are loved. And he is an expert in holding safe space for anyone to be deeply heard without judgement, to share the story of who they are, how they feel, and how they have experienced connection and love. Matt is with me in the studio today. I really hope you enjoy this episode. Do let me know do leave a review if you if it moves you in some way. I really hope it does. I know it will. Matt Hopwood joins us in the Psychic Matters studio today and Matt is here to talk about the wonderful work that he’s doing out in the world. And it’s all based on love. And that is what this episode is all about. Matt, welcome to Psychic Matters.

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Matt 

Thank you. It’s lovely to be here.

 

Ann 

Matt, tell us all about yourself. What is this love-based work that you’re doing out in the world?

 

Matt 

Wow. That’s a big question. But a good one. Yeah, it’s funny enough, this is the 10th anniversary, right now, of when this sort of project and this work started.  The project called A Human Love Story and essentially, it came out of a desire of my own, to try and understand, to try and feel and to try and understand why I couldn’t particularly feel or express emotions or communicate or connect with people in very deep and very, very profound ways. And I was brought up in a beautiful, loving, caring family, but I think like many families in England anyway, we didn’t really have an ability to talk about things that really mattered or how we really felt. And so, I grew up in that way. And, and when I got to my sort of mid 30s, well 33, actually, which is an interesting moment for people in their life, isn’t it, as, in these life cycles of initiation, and I got to 33. And in many ways, I just took to my bed, and I couldn’t, I couldn’t process, I couldn’t cope with the world. If you’d asked me how I felt, I would have said, I feel fine. I just feel fine. But I couldn’t have given you any other words around that. And what what happened in, in those months, I experienced, being loved by someone in a very deep, and a very profound way, in a way that didn’t hold any judgement, but just held me in a space. And that allowed me to be able to be still. And that allowed me to sit with myself and begin for the first time to see myself a little bit and understand myself a little bit. And love was, became less about being needed, and being wanted, and being desired by something or someone. And it became much more about being held. And being able to come with everything that I was or nothing that I was, and not having to have have anything right. And, and being able to be a complete failure in that space and be held and loved and honoured. And it was such a profound experience, that I just wanted to try and find a way of being able to provide these small spaces for people in the world. And I didn’t know how to do that. But at the time I was a musician. So, I thought, well, I’ll just walk. And I’ll take my guitar, and I’ll sing songs. And I’ll try and make spaces for people in the countryside. And very, very quickly I ditched the guitar, because that’s a crazy thing to do, walk hundreds and thousands of miles with a guitar on your back. But I just started walking through through England. And this, this extended and expanded around the world, but essentially just to be and to find people on the path and to sit with people, quietly sit with people and to give people opportunities to, to be seen and to be heard, and to be loved and to give myself those opportunities too and, and that and that’s how it started. That’s how the journey started. The process started. Yeah.

 

Ann 

That’s extraordinary. And you’ve met all these different people and you’ve recorded their stories.

 

Matt 

Yeah, I get, I guess what happened was to start with I was, you know, it would just be, it took me a lot of courage to come into a space of being present for other people. I used to get so hung up about where I was going and where I was walking to, that I’d miss nearly everyone that probably needed to be seen and heard and and held. But eventually I came to this this place where I would offer, if people wanted, for me to record our conversation. And that became a really beautiful thing because I could record it. And then I could take it home and I could, I edited myself out, and then I would give it back to them as a gift. And often people would give it to their family, or they would give it to the people that they had been speaking to or speaking of. Or they just hold it for themselves as a reflection. It’s really powerful to hear your own voice, isn’t it and to hear yourself say these things. And then some people just sort of said, why don’t you begin to share these things? Why don’t you begin to…?  And so, I began to make a sort of archive and an audio collection that was online. I’m just gonna pause there for a moment because my dog is squeaking …

 

Ann 

I can hear him. He is so welcome in our podcast.

 

Matt 

She’s my love story at the moment.

 

Ann 

Oh she, she …

 

Matt 

She needs 100% attention because …

 

Ann 

Oh, well bring her in. She’s more than welcome.

 

Matt 

Okay, let me just, let me just wrap her up a little bit.  Come here Pepper, you sit in here please. Sorry about that.

 

Ann 

Oh it’s, it’s fine. We had two cats in our in our last episode, and they were contributing. So, it’s beautiful.

 

Matt 

Yes, she does like to contribute, she’s very vocal. Just like me. Yeah, we, I got to this space of having these stories that I just began to share around the world and, and people began to listen and there was something very powerful about people sharing their their love stories. I called them love stories, but essentially they’re just stories about life. About people talking about those really powerful, visceral moments where they feel. And they may not know what it is they’re feeling, but they’re, they’re feeling a more expansive experience of life. And love just became a word that, that, that was wrapped around that. But what happened is, people shared that. And then as people began to listen to these stories, they built these amazing, these bridges of communication and connection, you know, essentially strangers from all different parts of the world could begin to relate to each other. And so, the love story itself became a love story. You know, it became an evolving experience of love as people came into understanding and mutual expression, it was very beautiful and sort of surprising, and nothing that was planned. So …

 

Ann 

It sounds just incredible, and I’ve listened to one or two of the recordings that you’ve got on your website, ahumanlovestory.com. But for people listening, perhaps you could explain or maybe give a little indication of what sort of things people have shared, what sort of stories do they have? What are they talking about when they, when you’re connecting?

 

Matt 

Yeah.  So, I think what, what seems to happen is people talk about always right where they are, at that moment. It’s how, it’s like how the world is meeting them, right then. So, I’ve met with women on the, on the towpath, I met a woman on the towpath in Birmingham in one of my first walks. And she was she was talking about this sort of trauma she was having, because her, her son had left home. And it was the first moment that he had left that sort of spacious family place, and he’d gone, and she was literally at that moment dealing with that loss. You know, she was holding this great grief. And they were these cords had been cut, these Mother Son cords. And, and that’s where she was. I went and met with some guys. I’ve been to some strange and some unusual places, I’ve been to some prisons in my time, meeting with people in those spaces, trying to understand how love might be expressed there. And I met with a group of guys, about eight or nine of them. And they’re exactly as you might expect prisoners to be, they’re really tough. And they had a lot of defenses up to protect themselves. But I talked about love. And one guy in the middle just just pointed at the guy over the table. And he said, well, well, he’s my love story. He said, because in the morning, he smiles at me. And he looks at me and he sees me. So, these love stories can be really powerful moments. Or they can be these stories of a lifetime, you know, these, these endless sort of emerging, romantic stories of love and being held. So, it’s everything. It’s absolutely everything.  I’ve spoken with, with people in America talking about coming into a motherhood, a mothering for an adopted child and how she is at that place in her life where she’s trying to teach her, her young girl, how to be a free woman. Love as she was finding it at that moment, was how can I teach my child to be truly free? As a woman in a world that doesn’t want her to be free most of the time?

 

Ann 

Wow.

 

Matt 

Yeah. So, it’s everything you might expect what love is, but but really, it’s more about how we meet the world, how the world is meeting us, and how we’re responding to those experiences, that, that feels like, where they mostly are.

 

Ann 

And when people are heard, that’s when we feel so loved, isn’t it?

 

Matt 

Yeah, I wrote a lot about this. And I experienced a lot about this in the beginning, this, this idea of listening, as a really powerful tool of of holding others. And what it is when we’re actually heard, with no, without any judgement, because I think most of the time, we’re either being judged, or we expect judgement. Just to sit down in a space where there isn’t any, I think is a powerful thing. And for me that is love. That is, that is love being articulated in the world.  To be able to sit with someone and and not want to control it.

 

Ann 

Yeah.

 

Matt 

You know, not needing to control it, or not needing to hold it because of our own fears.

 

Ann 

But it’s, it’s so interesting. You say that because I’ve just literally gone around the corner and dropped my daughter off at a friend’s house. And I was driving home and there was a guy on a scooter, an electric scooter on the wrong side of the road coming towards my car, and he was looking at his mobile phone. And so, I beeped him like, what are you doing?  And I said it out loud. What are you doing?! And as I went past, I said out loud, Annie, what are you doing? There’s a guy, you’ve just beeped him on a Sunday morning in the sunshine, he’s in his own world doing his thing. I’m trying to control his, his life by beeping at him and being rude. And I was so sorry that I’d done it, that I put that out into the world to cause a ripple where none needed to be, you know.

 

Matt 

Yeah, but that’s understandable as well, isn’t it because I think we, all of us, we, we are programmed, and mostly everything that is coming towards us in a day is teaching us to, to look at ourselves constantly, to be interior, to divide ourselves, to separate ourselves, to see ourselves with these small units coping with the world, you know, and to have narratives that’s asking you to be more expensive, and to see yourself in relation to all things. You know, that’s harder to come by, it’s harder to be in those vibrations. And I think, you know, we all have those sorts of instances in the world. But I think we have to come to these places. And this is, I feel like this is our work now as people who are wanting to be conscious, people who are wanting to shift and change and transform our lives into something else. Our job now is to give ourselves the opportunity and the tools to be still enough, so that we can be present, and really hear in each moment, so that we can see things clearly, like you saw that experience. So that we can respond to things clearly and in a loving way. And I feel personally that love is is essentially that presence. That’s how I experience love. When I feel loved and when I feel in a loving dialogue. It’s, it’s, it’s the ability to hold, to hold space and to surrender into it.  There is a beautiful teacher I love in America called the angel, Angel Kyodo Williams, she’s a Zen Buddhist monk. And she’s trans everything. That’s sort of how she described herself. But she talks about thresholds, you know, and when we come into the world, we come to rooms, we come to places, communities, we come to a threshold, and we have to decide what we’ll leave behind ourselves so that we may enter. And so that we may be loved, what do we have, what do we have to leave of ourselves behind? And all of the work I’m trying to do, is to love people enough, that there’s nothing they have to leave behind, that they can come with everything. You know, and whether those are stories picked up on the path, whether these are sacred men’s groups that we that we work with, whether it’s the books that are written, it’s all about my liberation is tied up with yours. My love is tied up with yours. My joy with yours, if you’re not liberated, neither am I. If you have to hold something back to come into a space, then so am I undone. You know, and I think this is, this is love as we have to find it in the world now.

 

Ann 

That is beautiful. And you said something earlier that makes me want to cry almost. And it was something in passing. But you said we expect judgement. And I think we do, I’m always looking over my shoulder or wondering if I’m doing something right, doing something wrong.  I don’t worry about what people think of me too much. But I do ex… Yeah, we do. I walk through life expecting judgement and, and that’s why this morning when I, when that man came towards me and I judged him for his error, what I saw as being on the wrong side of the road, looking at his phone being dangerous. I didn’t want to be in that space, I should have just let him live his life and not interfere and and try to put my stamp on something.

 

Matt 

Yeah, I’d really hear that. I think I think these are such challenging times, aren’t they? Because I feel like for all of us, we need to have a voice, you know, and particularly for us, particularly for like, perhaps gentler people, who haven’t spent our lives shouting or needing to be heard, you know, who aren’t extremes, but who just sit in this gentle place in the middle perhaps. These, this is our time to have our voice. But it’s how can we, how can we have our voice in a way that allows others to also have their voice?  Someone told me a beautiful, it was Alistair McIntosh. He’s one of my great heroes. He’s a Scottish liberation, theologian and a Land Campaigner, he is a magnificent man and he always talks about how, when you when you come into places that might be conflictual, you know, or there might be judgement around, what we have to do is, it’s like we have to have one hand holding up, holding ourselves saying this is my voice, and pushing with force and love. But the other hand has to be behind the person to hold them as they, as they are. So, you’re holding, but you’re also asserting. And I think judgement is judgement is the antithesis of love, right? I think, I think it is. The inability, just to allow, just to allow people to be, and to be, and to not to need to put our stuff on them. Because of our own fear and it is fear, it is fear, mostly, you know.  That’s my life, my life has been a life of fear, worry about failure, where I’m, how I’m perceived, I was an actor,  I trained to be an actor when I was 18, you know, that was my first thing, because I, it was so hard for me to be myself, it was much easier to spend, you know, years and years training to pretend to be other people.

 

Ann 

Yeah, I hear you.

 

Matt 

But this journey now, right, the journey of love is to is firstly to love ourselves.

 

Ann 

It’s amazing. You were an actor. I was an actress.

 

Matt 

Were you?

 

Ann 

Yeah. I like to say that I still am. I don’t actively pursue the career, although voice work. I, you know, I’d like to pick up some voice work now and again, but yeah, that that acting and that hiding behind a persona that is not yours. Yeah, it’s liberating, very liberating. Whereas why are we not liberating ourselves, which you spoke of earlier?

 

Matt 

Well do you, see, I thought about this a lot. And I think the acting was liberating because I could control every single moment in what I did. I could control where I walked. And where I stood, what I said, how I said it. So that at every single moment I was showing this version of myself in the way I wanted to do. So, I used to act, and at the same time, I was in a band. So, I had this super controlled, acted environment, and then I’d be in a band, which was just horror to me, I’d have to stand in front of people and sing stuff. Apparently, from my heart, that meant something that was true, you know that there was some truth in the thing. And that was just terrifying for me. So, I’d just get absolutely hammered. So, there’d be the one where I could control everything, then the one where I was out of my mind. To be able to be in, in public with people, yeah. Isn’t it fascinating?

 

Ann 

Yeah, it’s really fascinating. And it takes me back to once upon a time I played Shirley Valentine, I was lucky enough to play her on stage.

 

Matt 

You’d be amazing at that.

 

Ann 

That’s so nice of you. I played 18 different characters with different voices, different personalities, in this one woman show.  I was on stage for two hours. And it was beautiful, I got lovely responses, you know, I got standing ovations at the end of the shows. But the point I’m mentioning it for is because I, through playing all those characters, and playing the feelings of Shirley Valentine, I could feel the energy coming from the audience, and I could take them with me on the journey. I could manipulate the energy of me and them, bring them down, bring them up, make them laugh, and make them cry with me, while I was feeling those awful feelings that Shirley Valentine speaks of. And that was very powerful, to be the controller of all those emotions. And yet, we don’t want to, in reality, show our ugly crying or show the, that vulnerability in our true life, it would be mortifying, and I just find that really interesting that we, we hide so much of our emotion as a human being.

 

Matt 

We do here, we do here, but there are, you know, there are communities, a lot of the work I do, and a lot of the inspiration I get is from a very small, indigenous community called the Tutu Hele Mayan in Guatemala. And they’re a beautiful, beautiful community and the example of how embodied their life is, and a huge aspect of their life is grief. It’s really important to grieve and to show your emotion and to allow your emotion to be expressed. And in fact, it’s one of the most important things within the community. You know, so we don’t hold it. We have to let it flow because in in expressing our grief, we’re showing how much we love the thing that we missed. You know, and if we don’t grieve, then we haven’t fully loved it anyway. So, grief is this amazing process. And if you can’t grieve, they have people that they bring in who are professional grievers, that can bring the community to this place of grief. And everyone comes together. And if that doesn’t work, you’re taken to the sea. Because the sea is an energetic body can hold our grief and cleanse our grief. And if you can’t do it with the people, then they I think they used to like, give you a bottle of tequila, to come to this place where you can really grieve. And proper grieving is messy. And it looks ugly. You know, they say you grieve well, when you look terrible, when you look at yourself at the end, and you look terrible, but it is so important for them, so important that you have that ability to be open with your emotion. So, it’s not something that’s embodied and held in, you know, so energetically there is there is movement. You know, it’s not a, it’s not a repressive thing. It’s an expansive thing, you know.

 

Ann 

That is absolutely beautiful, because we don’t show, we don’t, we do hold on to our grief here. We really do hold on to our grief.

 

Matt 

Yeah, and I think it’s, you know, it’s, again, it, maybe it comes down to judgement, how are we going to be seen if we grieve fully? You know, and there’s a great sadness to that isn’t there? Isn’t it sad that we all don’t feel safe enough, that society will hold us if we grieve? If I’m walking out in the street, and I’m going through something, isn’t it a sadness that I can’t collapse in grief? And that instead of people looking at me as though I’m mad, people will come and hold me and sit with me and grieve with me. When you look at it in that simple way, there’s such sadness around, that that’s where we are. But that is where we are. So, all of this, all of this work, all of this process, all of this journey I feel we’re all coming on, is we’re trying to find our way to this loving, holding space, where we can grieve, and it’s okay. And people will be alongside you. I think the word abiding is a really powerful word when we talk about love. Just to be alongside, to abide with someone in something, not have to do anything, but just be with them in that grief, or praise or tears, whatever it is. I love that. I think that’s really beautiful. To help each other to grieve, I think that’s really important.

 

Ann 

So, what are you saying here, that we should, if we have a friend who is grieving, that we just sit with them, just be with them?

 

Matt 

I think so. I think to see the grief for what it is, which is the one of the most important things that someone can be expressing. And we don’t have to shut it up. You know, I think often we we sort of push aside grief because it makes us feel uncomfortable. It’s not about them, it’s about us. Gosh, this is this is uncomfortable. This is this you know, because grief is a powerful energy, right? You work with with energy and how we transform and transmute energy and grief is a powerful energy, it is like anger, there’s great force for movement that can transmute things. And I think it’s important to get ourselves out of the way, you know, and if someone needs to grieve, then just be with them. Be with them. Be with them. I wish I could grieve; I can’t cry like I wish I could.

 

Ann 

Why is that do you think?

 

Matt 

I think it is a long journey to being free. And to be fully in an experience of love is to be free. Like I can talk a lot more now about how I feel. I could tell you how I love, and I could tell you about vulnerabilities, I could tell you about where I am and I know I have no fear of those things anymore, which is lovely. But I think grief is a very physical thing as well. And I think where you will have learned like, when we train, and when we train to act, we often taught, you know, you learn the physical first because it’s easier to remember, right? The body inhabits and holds these things. We hold this all so tight in this tiny little body all these experiences, and I think that’s a longer journey. So, I often cry, which quite rightly, I cry with joy. Because there’s such sadness in grief, you know, that’s why they talk about grief and praise. You grieve because of the joy and the love of what you’re missing. And when you praise that’s so close to grief, because you’re praising this wonderful thing that you know, at some point you will do without.  So, I can cry it with joy a lot.

 

Ann 

Yeah, that’s beautiful. That reminds me of photographs I was shown when I was eighteen, I think was studying psychology. And they had these photographs of people who were crying and people who were crying with laughter. And we were asked to see if we could tell the difference. And you couldn’t really tell the difference. They all looked the same.

 

Matt 

Oh well they are, they are, exactly they are, when it’s good, when it’s true, I think it is the same. It’s exactly the same thing. That’s why we watch movies, right? That can make us cry with joy. Because we, it’s a way to grieve. But it’s a way to praise and express and all those things, too.

 

Ann 

Yeah, it’s a valve. And so, you talked about men’s groups, what do you do for, for groups, and I know your partner works with women as well. So, talk a little bit about the work that you do there.

 

Matt 

Yeah, I started, I wanted to find spaces for men, I wanted to create spaces for men to come into circle together, I call them Sacred Hoop. So, it’s like, it’s a spiritual, sacred circle, where men have the opportunity just to talk about what’s going on with them. That’s how it started. And I didn’t really know it would sort of transform to anything, but what seemed to happen was, as we came into these circles, these very beautiful relationships started.  People having the space to, I think, to, to be on, on like this equal place, you know, because we’re all journeying, myself as well. So, it’s just an opportunity to be together and, and try and express and try and meet people in emotional spaces where you can be vulnerable, and be heard, much like all the work we do. But that gradually evolved, so it becomes now a year or year’s process. And we lead towards this moment of, I call it initiation. And it is, it’s, we call it The Initiation Road. So, as we come towards Autumn Equinox, we we travel to the Hebrides, and we stay in this place on the island of Harris, very beautiful place.  There are more sacred spaces on the island of Harris and Lewis in the Outer Hebrides per square metre, and anywhere on the earth, sacred springs, sacred temples, old stone circles, standing stands, it is an extraordinary place. So, anyway, we go to this, this this place, which is sort of imbued with spirituality and elemental kind of communion with water and earth and wind. And then at one point, we build, we build, we have a fire ceremony where people let go of things through their experience that they would like to let go of, and we burn them in the fire. And then the next day, in the evening, they took, we take the ashes, and we bring the ashes around the wrists, and around the ankles. And they walk out across the island on what was the old Death Road that used to carry the coffins from the west to the east, sorry, from the east to the west. And they walk out barefoot if they like. However, they want to go, they walk out to the sea. And they go and they wash, they wash away all these things that hold them and they draw in new energy and cleansing. And then they walk back through the dark. And it takes about eight hours or nine hours but it’s it’s it’s something I think our communities here have lost, you know, I was never taken at 13 to go walkabout by my grandfather. I was never initiated through something to come into, to manhood. You know, I never had to and so you get left with these emotions. There’s this need to.  Why is it we all watch Tom Cruise films?  We vicariously initiate through other people, you know.  So, this is an opportunity for men to let go of things they might want to let go of but also to go through something that’s difficult and to be welcomed back and when they’re welcomed back, I make a feast and I drum them in and you can hear them coming down the road at midnight and they’ve been walking for eight hours and it’s just, to see the beauty in those men as they return.  To, to see that they have gone through a fear, that they have moved through something. It’s just, it’s just the most beautiful thing. So, and and the work keeps evolving. So, at the moment we’re doing this 40 Day purification and cleansing, that is, we’re using nutrition and we’re using sacred sound, I’m a sound healer. So, using sound and vibration to bring people to places where they can be very present. And they can be merged into this experience, not transcending, not leaving their body, but being really imminent. And really, here. Yeah. So that’s that’s sort of where it is.

 

Ann 

Wow, it sounds incredible. How can people join if they’re interested in coming along?

 

Matt 

Well, everything is on ahumanlovestory.com. So, if anyone is, if it resonates, and it will resonate, I think, that’s the thing. That’s the half of these lessons, and half of the work is about how do we sit in our heart? How do we begin to listen to our intuition as opposed to our mind?

 

Ann 

Yeah.

 

Matt 

So, if it does resonate, and then, just send me an email, and there’s always kind of these things?

 

Ann 

Yeah, it’s absolutely beautiful. Because we don’t have that we don’t have elders, to to teach us, to hold us in many ways, do we, a lot of people have, I don’t know their mum’s gone or dad’s gone on and they’re sort of, you know, we, a lot of us drag ourselves up, so.

 

Matt 

Yeah, and we and we are finding elders in different places like, there’s been a lot of talk that, you know, for people who are, who work with plant spirit medicine, so maybe cacao or, or tobacco, these sacred plants, a lot of people, obviously, they travel now and do I Ayahuasca but but whichever that experience is, some people use, call celery, one of the greatest plant spirit medicines because of what it can bring us. And it’s almost held, that these are our teachers, these are filling these voids of eldership. And bringing us to experiences where we can learn these sorts of, the perhaps these more profound truths, and bring us to these more expansive connections with all things. Yeah, yeah.

 

Ann 

Yeah, it’s absolutely beautiful. And I know, let’s just go back to that age 33, when you took to your bed that time.

 

Matt 

Yeah.

 

Ann 

What, what, there must have been a trigger for that.

 

Matt 

Yeah, I, I think what had happened probably, is that over the years, I had just very, very slowly, at every opportunity where there was an opportunity to grow and expand, I couldn’t, I couldn’t. The fear of failure, the fear of whatever baggage had been left with me, whether it’s, you know, through this, this experience, or through past life experience, karmic experience, whatever it was, that held me, didn’t allow me to walk through those, over those thresholds, you know, like we spoke. And so gradually, my whole life became a contraction, slowly, you know, through the years, through the years, and I think, I came to 33. And I think I was so far away from my soul, or the essence of the essential part of who this spiritual being was, I was so far away from that. I, I think I just shut down. And I think I just in a very old-fashioned way, I shut down, you know, and I ended up ill, you know, some kind of flu ill, but I also just ended up I didn’t want to be I just was in bed, and I had no energy, I had no ability to, to move. Everything was, had overwhelmed me. And I think that’s really interesting that that happened for me, because I think that is essentially what is happening for so many people all over the place now.

 

Ann 

Yes,

 

Matt 

Living in this day where it is so overwhelming and we don’t have the tools to hold us in that anxiety and that depression or however, it’s manifesting for us. And that’s how it was for me.

 

Ann 

And how can you advise those listening who maybe can’t come on a retreat with you? Or, you know, how can we address this anxiety that we all have?

 

Matt 

My goodness, I feel completely under qualified to give advice.

 

Ann 

You just seem so calm, and so zen, I’m like, you must have the secret.

 

Matt 

Do you know what, I think that maybe, it’s not a secret, but I think like, maybe the, the truth of it is, is its really hard work. It’s like to and to embrace that, you know, life is I think we expect, or we’ve been taught that, that love is the thing. That when we get it, it makes everything okay and different.

 

Ann 

Yeah.

 

Matt 

Maybe life is that thing as well, that when we, you know, we get to that place, when we get there, then everything changes. But the truth, the truth is, that that the sort of the most profound love, the most profound life is extraordinarily hard. From all the experiences that people have told me through my… it’s painful. It is painful, because you are living and you’re experiencing and you’re not numb to the world, you’re open to it. And so, I guess, the first thing is to acknowledge, I think, that life is really extremely hard to live in a really beautiful way. And just to know that it’s the journey that counts. And so, it is a journey, what do we do on that journey to help alleviate? How can we? How can we love ourselves more, more fully? And I think the first question is that, you know, do we really love ourselves? Do we really honour our body? Do we honour through what we do? And can we give ourselves space to sit and just look at that and say, well, I don’t think I do. I don’t think most people do. I don’t think they do. You know, we are the most perfect, beautiful things. But to know that and to sit with it, and then to say, well, how can I? How can I love this being? How can I love myself? And I think there’s that’s the beginning of the journey. And you have to have tools. You know, I do cold water swimming. If I told you how long it takes me to get up in the morning, and do the things I do, just to try and be well in this world at the moment.

 

Ann 

Where do you, where do you go cold water swimming? And how often do you do that?

 

Matt 

 In the sea? Well, mostly in the sea. But if I can’t get in the sea, I have a cold shower. Or I might have a bathroom the night before that I leave and then I open the window. So, by the time it’s the morning, it’s, it’s freezing.

 

Ann 

And you just get in a cold shower every day?

 

Matt 

Yeah, yeah, for three minutes. But so like, cold-water showers, or cold-water swimming is even better because you’re immersed in the mother, in that grey ocean of, like you’re shaking.  Shaking is an amazing practice, for stimulating our, for calming down our nervous system, to regulating ourselves. Within two minutes of shaking, you can regulate your whole system and bring it into a state of rest.

 

Ann 

Talk to us about shaking, what is shaking?

 

Matt 

Shaking is just…

 

Ann 

Well, I know what I know it shaking is, you know, I can shake!

 

Matt 

Well, that’s the point, right? So, all over the world, every community, every indigenous community, pretty much, they shake. Every mammal on earth shakes when they go through trauma, it’s our natural response. Going through trauma, we can’t, but we get it out of the body. So instead of holding it, we shake it. But here and in most Western culture, it’s like, it’s the last taboo. If you’re seeing as shaking, you’re seen as mad.

 

Ann 

Yes, you are,

 

Matt 

You know, I was shaking down on the beach in a storm the other day just you know, shaking, shaking all over. And, you know, within 20 minutes three policeman came down to, to sort of talk to me, because they’d had reports of someone who is crazy on the sea.

 

Ann 

Right.

 

Matt 

But shaking is the most natural gift our body has. We do it anyway when we, but, but to to intentionally shake, you can very, very, very quickly you can calm your whole, you can   regulate your whole system. Give your system a chance to release what you’re holding.

 

Ann 

This is very interesting, because so what do you do? Just start anywhere, just shake your whole body for how long? Two or three minutes?

 

Matt 

You can do … Yes, I mean, I do it for 15 minutes, if not 30 minutes, sometimes 45 minutes. But on a very simple level, you just plant your feet on the ground, and just bending your knees, just shaking, so you keep your feet planted. But just shaking from that, from that place, shaking your legs, shaking your hips, shaking everything, moving your head side to side, that’s stimulating the vagus nerve, the longest nerve down the back of the body. So, just these amazing health benefits and you just just allow yourself to breathe whilst you’re doing that. Breathing into your belly. And, and what and what you’re doing is you’re just drawing everything into this rest place. You’re drawing everything. So, you’re coming out of fight and flight mode very, very quickly. It can just take a couple of minutes yeah.

 

Ann 

It fascinates me because I did a big exam, maybe a week ago. And what happened before that exam, was something that happens to me when I get under a lot of stress, which is my right hand starts shaking like crazy and I can’t stop it.  It goes like this. And it started, this shake started when I, after I had my second child.  I had postpartum psychosis. I went psychotic. It was awful. I was very, very sick. And this shake started then, and I had it for several months at that time, and then of course, I recovered, and I and I got very well. But at times of great stress, it comes back. And there must be something trapped within me that just, it’s, and if I shake like that, it starts to calm me down. And that’s why I think my body naturally does it, because it, it starts to almost feel like I get back in balance by having this kind of strange shake.

 

Matt 

Yeah, well, you do. It’s really interesting this because when I was acting, if I would be in a, like a stressful position, the only thing that I couldn’t really control was this finger in my right hand.

 

Ann 

Right, your index finger.

 

Matt 

And someone was acting, they could just see I was just slightly tapping the finger against my my leg. And I, so I work with, with sound, doing sound as a form of healing, you know, and the process of that is that it’s an understanding that everything is vibration, that everything is is energy, we’re just light, and sound. Everything is just waves and waves of energy. So, when you look at yourself in that way, then, then all we’re, all we’re doing all the time, through all these processes, is we’re moving energy. And energy gets stuck in our body when we go through trauma. And because we haven’t been taught how to remove that, it remains in the body. So, you know, and we find ways to release it. And obviously, you’ve, this way that was coming for you was this was your response to trauma.

 

Ann 

 Yes.

 

Matt 

And your body had found a way to try and relieve that, trying to relieve that sort of.

 

Ann 

So, I must start my morning shaking them, that might be a better way to do it. So, it doesn’t build up to a crescendo.

 

Matt 

Absolutely. I mean, it’s just a beautiful thing, or just just throughout the day, just you could do it two or three times a day, it can happen very quickly. Yeah.

 

Ann 

So, you get up, you have your cold shower, you do your shaking, what else do you do?

 

Matt 

Oh, I feel really embarrassed talking about it. I don’t well, so I, I brush my teeth and my tongue in an ayervedic way, which is just, you don’t need to know about that. Then I have the cold shower, I do dry brushing. So, to stimulate all the movement of the blood and the energy meridians, then I have a cold shower, then I do, often I do sound, so I’ll do like a sound, a sounding. So, I use a Shruti box. Which is a small drone instrument, and I will sound through various intervals. And intervals are very powerful because they, they correlate with different, different parts of our body. So, as we go through interval sounding, we balance our body, we clear our energy system, so it just allows us to, to process everything. And then at the moment, I’m doing this purification. So, I drink a pint of water, it’s half an hour, then a pint of celery juice, then half an hour then another pint of water. It’s all about detoxing, allowing the liver a chance to process, which often we don’t. Because we’re too busy eating in the morning, so the liver never gets to clear its system.

 

Ann 

Gosh, it sounds so beautiful, like real self-care, and self-love.

 

Matt 

Yeah, well, I try. But I mean, again, like COVID. So, I just recently had COVID. And it was such a lesson for me. Because there I was thinking look how much hard work I do to look after myself and then, from that other people. And yet the reason I got COVID was, was my inability to look after myself fully. Like I knew if I went where I went, that there was a chance that I might pick up COVID because the people there had it, my family. And yet, I still went, even though I knew that that wasn’t looking after myself.

 

Ann 

Yeah.

 

Matt 

And in the month, in the last month leading up to that I haven’t looked after myself as well as I should and that, that allowed, I’m not as strong as I should have been, so that when, when we receive these energies, these illnesses, our body can just work with them gently, because there’s, there’s, there’s flow. There’s energetic flow, so things can calm and pass and move without too much pain. Too much struggle. So, I’ve got so much work to do. Self-love. That’s the journey.

 

Ann 

So, what’s next for you, Matt? In terms of A Human Love Story.? You write songs as well on there. I know there’s beautiful music.

 

Matt 

Yeah, a long time ago, I haven’t written songs, funnily enough, since the project started. The love I experienced and the loving relationship I came into meant it’s almost like I had nothing to write about. I only seem to be able to write songs if they’re melancholy and sad. So, so music, music sort of, I do this sound healing music, like compositions and emergence but not really songs I guess anymore. I recently finished a book which is called And The Girl Called To The Moon What Is Love and that’s been a really big thing for me. And that’s part of all of my work at the moment. It’s how, it’s about a girl standing on the shore, asking what love is because she’s never felt it. And she doesn’t know what it is. And it’s a, it’s an allegory, or it’s a fable really about how we can come into loving communion with all things. So, it’s seeing love as an expression of how I meet the world. The wind, the air, the earth, the sea, everything, food, how can we come to these experiences in ways that are honouring you know, like a prayer? Like, how do we meet the water that’s like a prayer. So how do we give love and receive love to all things? Not just these these human moments, but to all that is? So, a lot of my work is in that at the moment, and

 

Ann 

That sounds so beautiful Matt, can we buy this book? Where would we purchase your book?

 

Matt 

Yeah, so very deliberately, it’s not on Amazon. So, it’s, it’s in Independents, but you can come to me probably is easiest come to www.ahumanlovestory.com. It’s a it’s a small novella. It’s a, it’s a fable. And it came out of really people asking me, you know, you must understand a little bit about love. How do you experience love, or people telling me very sadly, that they don’t think they know what love is? And it’s like, I always wanted to tell them that they are loved.

 

Ann 

Yeah.

 

Matt 

And trying to explain to them how they are loved by never quite had the courage. I never could quite articulate it, so the book is, in a way I was trying to talk to all of us, you know, who struggle to love, which is everyone.

 

Ann 

Yeah. It’s beautiful. Matt, it has been so lovely talking to you, especially on this subject.

 

Matt 

Yeah, it’s been so lovely. Thanks for having me. It’s lovely to be, it’s lovely to have the chance to talk about it. And it’s, it’s lovely to be with people. And just to hear how it reflects for them and hear where they are and part of their story. It’s just, it’s just a joy. So, thank you. Oh, it’s a pleasure. So, your your website, ahumanlovestory. If people go over there, they’ll be able to hear some of these extraordinary ordinary people who come and speak of their stories of love. So do go over there, everybody. Matt, thank you so very much.  Thank you.

 

Ann 

Well, that was Matt Hopwood of www.ahumanlovestory.com. Please do go and have a look at his beautiful website and check out all the work that he’s doing in the world. And while you’re there, buy a copy of his beautiful book, which is called And The Girl Called To The Moon, What Is Love? Thank you so much for joining us on this podcast today. And with all my episodes there are show notes available for you, which contain a full transcript of everything that’s been said. Plus, URL links for things that have been referred to in this episode. So, to pick those up, please go to my website, which is www.anntheato.com. And if you’ve enjoyed this episode, or indeed any other episode, please tell your friends and get them to listen. Do subscribe, press the subscribe button so you don’t miss any upcoming episodes. They come out every two weeks. And what else do I want to tell you? Oh, yeah, write a written review. That would be amazing. That’d be just so amazing, because it helps the podcast to move up the podcast charts. And I’m trying to get to number one at some point this year, as you all know, so try and help make that happen. Oh, we got to number seven in Ireland last week. Yay! Thank you so much to last week’s guest, Karen Francis McCarthy, for giving us a very special episode about the Thin Places in Ireland. It was a fascinating episode, so do check that out if you haven’t listened to it yet, but that episode took us up to number seven in the Irish podcast charts. So that was really brilliant. So, to help the number one slot become ever closer, please leave your written review on Apple podcasts or www.podchaser.com And you can go to my website onto the podcast page, and you’ll see that there is a link there, that will take you straight to podchaser.com. Have a great couple of weeks everyone and once again, my name is Ann Théato and thank you for listening to Psychic Matters.

CREDITS

Reach by Christopher Lloyd Clarke. Licensed by Enlightened Audio.

 

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