Mantak Chia is one of the biggest proponents of Darkroom retreats. Chia’s darkroom facility in Thailand is a block of condos with the windows blocked out, air conditioning and no lights. The Tao Gardens Darkroom Retreat staff serve guests by wearing infrared goggles.
Chia has much information on his site about the science of using a darkroom to raise consciousness and promote healing.
He also has a newsletter, The Darkness Review. You will find free issues to download on this link.
Be sure to download the PDF Darkroom Technology Manual. In it, he explains about the chemical DMT that is released after a certain time in darkness, the biology of the pineal gland and the spiritual implications. Right-Click here to download the free Darkroom book.
Here’s an excerpt from the site:
The neurotransmitter 5-MeO-DMT (‘akashon’) is normally only active when we are in the womb and in the first months of our lives. It is now reactivated in the darkroom. 5-MeO-DMT switches on 40% more of the cerebral cortex and awakens the nervous system to become aware of itself; ‘beingness’ results. It is the empathogenic neurotransmitter that expands the emotional body between ‘infinity and zero’. It gives rise to telepathy in the emotional and intuitive bodies. It engages the awakening of the ‘Flower Of Life’, the spine, which begins to glow in a state of beingness and peace.
Jasmuheen is another one who first experienced a darkroom retreat with Chia and now gives her own retreats at his facilities. She also has a free PDF book download, Darkroom Diary Downloads & The Freedom of the Immortal’s Way with Jasmuheen. Right-Click here to Download.
Q: Over the last few years you have begun the practice of darkroom therapy, why is that?
A: According to Mantak Chia, “The darkness actualizes successively higher states of divine consciousness, correlating with the synthesis and accumulation of psychedelic chemicals in the brain. Melatonin, a regulatory hormone, quiets the body and mind in preparation for the finer and subtler realities of higher consciousness (Days 1 to 3). Pinoline, affecting the neuro-transmitters of the brain, permits visions and dream-states to emerge in our conscious awareness (Days 3 to 5). Eventually, the brain synthesizes the “spirit molecules” 5-methoxy-dimethyltryptamine (5-MeO-DMT) and dimethyltryptamine (DMT), facilitating the transcendental experiences of universal love and compassion (Days 6 to 12).” So during a darkroom retreat we can experience the benefits of different brain functions.
In Jasmuheen’s Darkroom Diary, she shares how she worked with Chia’s practices and found many of her practices are simplified versions of the ancient Tao practices. She feels some practices were much more involved in ancient times to weed out the serious practitioners. She was also working with her programming towards living without liquid (she already doesn’t need food).
So to quote Bill, it seems the big deal about a darkroom retreat is that the “Darkness itself is brilliant!…. It’s a brilliant experience to stop the sensory input to the eyes and have all these other senses come up, which is many more than we think we have…. There’s information coming at you like its a fountain… The darkness really accelerates the process.”