Connecting to My Inner Child
Mark [0:00] I’d like to welcome Theo Demetriou to the World Heart of Connection Podcast today. Theo’s a metal artist who showed me at the World Heart of Connection Day his beautiful sacred geometry. On the day we connected and as we men aren’t known for our connection it was just really lovely to have that connection beyond self with Theo. Today Theo is here to share his story have a conversation on his connection to Self, Others and ‘All That Is’ – welcome Theo.
Theo [0:31] Thank you.
Mark [0:32] Theo just by way of starting, how do you as a male, what’s your method, process of connecting to yourself? How do you do it? What do you do?
Learning to Connect ~ Listening to my Children
Theo [0:46] I think it’s been a fairly long process for me. Over the last few years, I’ve been searching for ways to connect. I feel as if one of my easiest ways to connect is when I look at my children and I speak to my children. As hard as it may be to understand that. We have a lot to learn from our children. The more you listen to them the more you actually listening to yourself. So, I believe that the connection that I’ve discovered is by opening up myself, allow myself to see my child within and not block it out. Allow ego to sort of overtake that. So, that’s one of my best one of the biggest ways I’ve found it’s helped me a lot.
Mark [1:52] When you notice that child within, what do you do for that child within do you care for it? Do you notice it? Do you recognise it? Give it loving-kindness and compassion?
Theo [2:04] Well, I think actually, I’m always aware of it and I never let it go. So, one of the things I explain, and I talk about this on many occasions. Especially with the kids and that is, I tell them to remember things in the past. When they were children, like small children, I asked them how far back you can remember. They’ll say to me like my son will say to me, well I can remember till I was about five years old? I’d say, “well what do you remember about that time when you’re five years old? He’ll say, well, you know, I have images of this happening, or you and I do this, and I felt like this. I’d say to him okay so never forget that. Always remind yourself about when you were five. I found that that’s the way that I’ve kept in touch with my child within, is by never forgetting about my past when I was a child. The good things that happened when I was a child. They actually help you open up your heart and remember your child. I think that a lot of people, they forget everything about the child.
Disconnecting from our Childhood
Mark [3:29] Is that more so for men?
Theo [3:33] To be honest with you or think no. I think that’s across the board. I think men and women forget. I think that a lot of people may be, and I’m speculating that maybe people don’t want to remember some things about their childhood. Also as you get older we’re conditioned and told, it’s time to grow up. You know, you’re 20 years old now, you should be married or you’re 25 years old, you should be doing this by now or you should be doing that by now. I think that a lot of us just block out our childhood because we’re grown up now and we’re going to do what everyone else is doing.
Mark [4:27] When we block that child out, do you notice any reaction from that inner child when it’s been blocked out?
Theo [4:35] Well, I think that the reactions are not intentional. I think that the reactions are sometimes may seem like there a natural reaction, and we don’t even know that there’s a reaction. I’d say that some reactions are where we lash out at someone. We try and dominate someone and that goes again, men and women. So there’s is I think it’s just a natural thing that happens that we can’t help. I again, I think it’s purely because we’ve forgotten who we were and we’ve lost our way.
Disconnecting from our Wounds – Down the Rabbit-Hole
Mark [5:19] There is a concept that we’ve pushed a lot of those wounds down the old rabbit holes. I’m wondering whether that’s metaphor down the “rabbit hole” and we push the child down into that rabbit-hole into the subconscious and hope it goes away and never comes back ever again. If it was a not so great a childhood.
Theo [5:38] Oh definitely if it wasn’t such a great childhood I think that’s an absolute yeah that’s definitely true. I think even if you had a great childhood, I think that we actually just purely forget. It was almost like our memory banks can’t hold all these memories. Because we don’t remind ourselves about that special time that Mum brought me that ice cream. I was crying and when I held the ice cream my hand I tasted the ice cream, I felt so good. All that time Mum cuddled me or Dad held my hand and made me feel special or for something. So I think we forget those moments and because we forget the moments, we forget our child, we forget who we are. Or who we were or how we felt or the love true love or pure – purity the pureness of what we were as a child.
Connecting to the Inner Child
Mark [6:33] When you stay connected to that inner child within yourself, what do you notice happens to your connection to Self and Others?
Theo [6:44] Well, that’s a difficult one. That’s probably more difficult than some of the hard times when I was a child, or when I remember myself as a child. The reason behind that is if you stay connected with your child then you’re vulnerable. You’re vulnerable to a lot of people that can’t help themselves. Because again comes down to conditioning of us in society. That we get attacked, or we get squashed basically, we get put down because you’re in touch with a child and you’re vulnerable. I wouldn’t say weak but there’s definitely – you’re definitely leaving yourself open to the ego – ego-driven.
Mark [7:43] Have we men disconnected from that vulnerability because of ego or it’s unsafe to be vulnerable?.
Men’s Vulnerability an Unsafe Space?
Theo [7:49] It’s unsafe to be vulnerable. It’s definitely unsafe to be vulnerable. I think when we – like we say being in touch with your child or showing your child within. It can give you that the possibility of being attacked I guess. That’s one way of saying it.
Mark [8:18] When we’re attacked like that, can that then be quite painful?
Pain within our Vulnerability
Theo [8:24] I think if you’re not ready for it, it can be painful. If you’re aware of it, you can – I don’t know if you can use it to your advantage. I think you can use it to your advantage because basically it shows – It can help you see that you are in touch. Do you know what I mean? Like, instead of letting it just bring you down, it’s almost like it can also bring you back. It can bring you up, like you can use it to your advantage in that way and say, well, hang on, it’s okay. It’s okay that person said that to me – that’s because they are lost they’re conditioned. I’m not conditioned so I know where I am, I know who I am.
Mark [9:20] The vulnerability? How the word that sits in my mind around vulnerability? It’s quite sacred, it’s a very fragile space and when we’re not coping in the world, we can be quite vulnerable. How do we give compassion and loving-kindness to that vulnerability within ourselves?
Connecting Lovingly to our Vulnerability
Theo [9:52] Well actually that’s something I haven’t really thought about much. How to give compassion to that vulnerability. I think, again, just being aware of your vulnerability is almost like self-respect I would say. Maybe that’s one way of looking at it. I don’t how – compassion is yes, self-respect I’d say – give yourself that self-respect.
Mark [10:28] How do you then – when you connected to that vulnerability, you’re connected to the inner child? Do you notice that it has an impact on your connections to children? Does it have a connection to your partner? Does it have a connection to others?
Theo [10:42] Absolutely. Yeah. I think, especially for your children. If you’re in touch with your vulnerability and your child within. Your children connect with you better. I find for myself that keeping myself open and vulnerable when I’m with my children, it just helps them connect with their children and stay in tune with themselves. I get a lot more what’s the word? I get a lot more out of it. I get a lot more not respect – I’m not looking for respect, I’m just looking for a reality.
Connecting to our Loving Flow-State
Mark [11:40] As I’m sitting here with you is – what was sitting in my mind in that connection to children, to others, there’s like a flow of love – Is there an energetic flow? We can’t put words to it, but there’s just that a flow of connection to them and it’s at an energetically level?
Theo [12:00] Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, that’s exactly right.
Mark [12:05] In that flow is there a sense of closeness?
Theo [12:08] Oh yeah. Deep closeness. A deep closeness.
Mark [12:14] Beyond words?
Theo [12:15] Beyond words
Losing Ego in Love Flow-State
Mark [12:17] Beyond ego?
Theo [12:19] Ego is not even there. I think and truly believe that the ego is really affecting a lot of us. It’s just a blocker. Ego blocks, a lot of things. This is where we were saying about being vulnerable and being attacked. That’s just ego. The ego is definitely the blocker in those situations.
Mark [12:52] I’m wondering for men’s connection to Self and Others, whether the Alpha male ego is a massive blocker and impinges on the connections to Self and Others?
Theo [13:07] Yeah, absolutely.
Mark [13:11] As we men aren’t well known for our greatest connections. We, what’s stopping us men from making better connections do you think?
What prevents Men & our Connections?
Theo [13:31] I believe that other men are stopping us. Other men, other women, you know, I’m going to keep it open-ended there, especially nowadays that we’re more aware of equality. So both sides are stopping us. But especially for men, I think its other men. Even though we live in a world where we are aware of equality, and we’re really careful nowadays about equality and what you say. I still think that men don’t care about that, especially when it comes to each other. I think they really are aware of not saying the wrong things to women. But when it comes to saying the wrong things to each other to men, I think that still – we’re in the dark ages still for that.
Men disconnecting from our Hearts at an early age (Emotional Brain)
Mark [14:35] It’s like if we look back over the development as men in from zero to five through two primary schools, we were very connected as young children because that’s the inner child. As the ego is developing, but it’s not fully developed. We were emotional beings and we were very connected. Look at young boys around a primary school they’d be walking around arm and arm and bestie’s. Then over time that male ego kicks in and I’m wondering whether as social conditioning has then told us that no, stop crying. Learn to cut off that inner child, that vulnerability that you’re talking about before and we’re then taught to block it out. Yeah. I’m wondering how much that then impacts our disconnection?
Theo [15:41] Oh, yeah, that’s a major impact.
Mark [15:45] With that, disconnection, I’m wondering whether we then take that the learning of that disconnection into intimate relationships? Because we’ve been taught to disconnect however in intimate relationships – it is about connection Physically, Mentally, Emotionally and spiritually. Are we sort of at lost with that?
Taking our disconnection into Relationships
Theo [16:13] Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. I think that’s a major flaw that we have developed, especially going into relationships.
Theo [16:28] The men are meant to be doing this. Women are meant to be doing that and there’s – there’s almost like a line drawn between the two. Again, I think that’s because the conditioning of you know, when we were all kids in school, we all equal, we are pretty much all the same. But as soon as we start looking at our parents. So we were a reflection of our parents at the end of the day. So the more we look at their parents as we grow, that’s when things start to change. I think the new generation has got a chance because if we can – if some of us can actually change some of our kids like to let go of the ego. Then I think the new generation that comes through, will actually hold on to that vulnerability a little bit. I think that’s what will help society I guess to evolve.
Learning from the Pain of our Disconnections
Mark [17:50] As you’ve journeyed through life, and you’ve learned through the connection and disconnection. As you’ve grown and learned more about connection – As you’re letting that unfold and practice the learnings from the pain of disconnection to get back into connection. Are you noticing a difference with your connections now through the learning?
Theo [18:16] Oh, yes absolutely.
Mark [18:18] How do would you describe a connection – when your connection to others is flowing? What do you experience – physically mentally, emotionally and spiritually?
The Flow of our Connection to Others
Theo [18:29] I think once when you’re connecting you feel an almost like a weight being lifted off you. It’s almost like an enlightened. Some sort of enlightenment, enlightening. It’s almost like you’re again, almost like you’re learning or you’re teaching – it’s a teaching feeling. It’s almost like someone’s taking that from you and they’re absorbing that fully. It’s not like I’m trying to teach someone how to speak English or someone how to read. It’s a connection that goes inside – it sort of data is absorbed.
Mark [19:32] Can I ask whereabouts in the body is it taken from you or absorbed? Describe where in your body it is?
Theo [19:40] Well I haven’t really thought of that but now, thinking of it, I would have to say it’s almost like an entire body connection. It’s almost like your whole body is just resonating and it just takes it in from everywhere. Your fingers, your toes, top of your head all over
Connecting to our Aliveness
Mark [20:11] Is there an aliveness that comes into your body as you hit into that space?
Theo [20:16] Oh absolutely. There is an aliveness, absolutely there’s aliveness. There’s energy and the energy is not the really unexplainable type of energy. Maybe the type of energy you have when you see your first your child born with that energy, you know what, if you can explain it that way maybe
Mark [20:49] It’s just interesting watching your body you really lightened up and it’s like you became alive as you were connecting to that energy – your whole body was resonating in it. What do you notice happens to others when you’re in that energy? How do you notice other people responding to you?
Theo [21:08] Well, that’s interesting because some people respond badly whereas others respond really well they draw from that energy. Some people use their energy against me and some use the energy for their own and take it on board and use it for themselves. So, it’s a hard one, I don’t really take that much notice of it until I see how it’s reacted with the person. So normally, it’s a 50-50 chance it will go either way.
Mark [21:49] When you’re in that energy that you’re sharing with me just before do you put that energy into your sacred geometry?
Theo [22:00] Yeah, I think the when the sacred geometry, that’s only a new thing for me. I’ve definitely used it in a way to help myself in some way to actually become more in touch with my inner self. I truly believe it does do something, whether it’s on a subconscious level or on an actual physical level. I’m not 100% sure on again, but I do project that. I think what it is it’s mainly a projection of – what’s the word I was trying to find there? It’s a projection of energy, positive energy – but yeah, I’m still playing around with it like different things – I’m trying different things out.
Connecting to our Deep ‘All That Is’
Mark [23:10] When you’re connecting into that energy do you go beyond yourself and connect to ‘All That Is’?
Theo [23:20] Well the ‘All That Is’ I think unfortunately for me, I have something stuck in my head with the ‘All That Is’ at the moment and I’m struggling to connect with the ‘All That Is.’ I haven’t really taught myself how to block out other energies around me. I haven’t really learned that and I’m a little bit stuck in the way of say – I feel as if I need to be in a big open space to connect with the ‘All That Is.’ When I’m not in a big open space and I’m with lots and lots of people, and I’m in a building or I’m in – I don’t find myself able to connect with the ‘All That Is’ – I struggle.
Mark [24:20] Do you allow yourself to get out to those open spaces to connect – to allow yourself to connect to the ‘All That Is’?
Theo [24:28] I find myself sometimes just by accident being out there not deliberately being out there. I’m working on actually deliberately being out there. So that’s my focus in life at the moment. One of my biggest focus in life is to be out there and be fully connected with the ‘All That Is.’
Nature a Connection to the ‘All That Is’
Mark [24:54] When you do find yourself out there in those open spaces and connected to the ‘All That Is’ what do you notice happens to yourself – to your body, to mind, to your heart, to your spirit?
Theo [25:09] Well, it has been a little while since that’s happened for me, actually. I’ve actually had to think back to when I was a child to actually get that connection. And because I haven’t really been able to break free at this stage. I’ve had a lot of time over the last five, six years, seven years that it’s been a lot of ego-driven, wants and needs and society. The sort of conditioning that’s not allowed me to do these things that I should be doing.
Ego Constraints to Connecting to our ‘All That Is’
Mark [26:00] Now that you’re noticing those constraints, when you notice them, what happens to you?
Theo [26:10] Well, a number of things happen. Anxiety, stress, a feeling a sense of feeling of being trapped, almost caged in. All these feelings are there.
Mark [26:34] There really good feeling for our mental health ain’t they (Laughter) Not!
Theo [26:38] Not, not good at all.
Mark [26:41] I’m wondering whether that’s – this is a difficulty for men is because we’ve not been conditioned in that way. We’re starting to recognise it the trapped feeling, the anxiety, and the more awareness that men get around this I’m wondering whether that would help them learn how to connect to themselves better. Once they’ve connected to themselves better that they can then connect better to others and to the ‘All That Is’ that exists?
The flow-on effect of Men Connecting to Themselves
Theo [27:17] Yeah, definitely. I mean that is definitely a possibility that could happen but I have this still have this like an unfortunate feeling. The unfortunate feeling I have is that – that’s going to be a big struggle to actually try and connect to get a lot of us guys and girls right to actually be able to disconnect from that and find reconnect with our ‘All That Is.’ I think it’s very, very hard thing to do, to try and do on a big scale
Mark [27:59] In working with men, some of the ‘All That Is’ or how I described the ‘All That Is’ – is the serenity in Bonnie Doon the old movie the ‘Castle.’ He’s talking about the serenity and Bonnie Doon, or the other clique I use is sitting at the back of the boat. We are bringing in the line, the fishing line. In those processes in that space, I’m wondering whether are physically connecting, physically, emotionally, spiritually connecting to the ‘All That Is’ in a doing way.
Theo [28:35] Yes, yeah, I see that.
Men’s connecting to different forms of Mindfulness
Mark [28:37] That in itself is a form of mindfulness. It’s a form of connecting to the ‘All That Is’ and a lot of guys say, “yeah, it’s just, they’re there, they’re connected”. They may just not have the language, they’ve physically doing it. They may just not necessarily have the mindfulness language. It is being – that’s being mindful. It’s great for their well-being to just – when they’re stressing about life on land, just go back to the back of the boat to the rod and start touching the line. That to me is a connection to the ‘All That Is’ – it doesn’t have to be cross-legged in you know.
Theo [29:25] No true absolutely. You just reminded me actually of how I do connect sometimes and funnily enough, my connection sometimes is just gardening and touching the earth. This is something I forget sometimes and that is to ground yourself, it’s a type of grounding. Doing is a type of grounding and putting your fingers in the dirt really makes you connect with the earth. Something that goes into talking about Earth. The earth – I think Earth is something that we forgetting about a lot. We don’t talk about the planet or the earth. Being connected to the earth sometimes can help us connect with our inner-child and ourselves fully. This is where our disconnection can be sometimes – a lot of times, that’s why men also do-the do, the doers.
Connecting & Grounding to Mother Earth
Mark [30:42] When you connect to that Earth, your hands are in the earth – what happens that caged feeling, that trapped feeling, that stress, that anxiety?
Theo [30:52] It’s freedom.
Mark [30:52] Freedom?
Theo [30:55] It’s a type of freedom?
Mark [30:56] What a gift?
Theo [30:58] And it’s right there.
Mark [31:00] In that freedom and the gift of that freedom what happens to your well-being?
Theo [31:06] Everything just benefits from it. It’s ridiculous.
Mark [31:11] How would you describe your connection to yourself, others and ‘All That Is’ in that space?
Theo [31:17] I think it’s an absolute connection, absolute connection entirely with everything, the universe. Once you’re in the earth, and once you’re in it and your hands are in it, I mean, look, whether you’re thinking about planting that rose bush or you’re thinking about planting that lettuce or what have you doing at the time. I think subconsciously you may not even realise it’s happening to you but you are actually connecting on multi-levels. You’re not aware of it but it just enlightens – it lifts you up. It picks you up and I think there’s a lot there to be remembered, we need to remember that.
Mark [32:01] So as men, what messages could we be giving men to help them connect to themselves? Just like you described?
Connecting to Positive Childhood Memories
Theo [32:16] Hmm, well, I think Yeah, just number one I think is to try and remember some highlights of your childhood – within it will have a good childhood. We definitely had some times where we laughed when we were happy where we were with our mates in primary school, arm in arm or holding hands or whatever. Those moments will help you – help bring you back down, ground you. When you’re digging in the garden will do a job where you are digging holes to the fence post in or doing something there. I think anything we do on the earth will help ground us as well. Just simply like, sometimes it’s as simple as this may sound, take your shoes and socks off, stand on the grass, look at the sun or do the things when you were a kid. Go back to the things we’re doing when we’re kids, sometimes not all the time. Those small little things barefoot on the grass or at the beach, or wherever is nice for you.
Mark [33:36] As men develop these forms of deeper forms of connection to themselves. What impact do you think that would have on men’s relationships to themselves, their relationships to others and their relationships to the ‘All That Is’?
Theo [33:56] Oh, yeah, I think it would definitely impact in a positive way. It can only impact in a positive way. I think. I mean, look we are talking on a broad level and I know a lot of guys that won’t take that on board but it will definitely impact them in a positive way.
Mark [34:24] Is there anything – I’m just mindful of the time – anything further that you want to share about a connection to draw to a close. To draw our wonderful conversation to a close?
Listen to your Children connects Our Inner Child
Theo [34:37] Yeah, just remember when you talk to your children, if you have children, if you talk to your children listen to them. Truly listen to them with no biased or no ego and take it on. Take it on and just open up your heart and, and that’ll help you find your inner self, your inner-child, and your inner peace.
Mark [35:14] Thank you for the lovely opportunity to sit here with another male talking and opening up the conversation that men’s connections to Self, Others and ‘All That Is’ I really appreciate your time and I appreciate your vulnerability for sharing your inner story.
Theo [35:34] You’re welcome.