TRIPPING IN A SENSORY ISOLATION BOX

A box of sensory isolation causes a journey into the depths of emptiness, dissipating the waves of perpetual agitation of the mind. Add psychedelic substances and … get ready for a real trip.

A box of sensory isolation causes a journey into the depths of emptiness, dissipating the waves of perpetual agitation of the mind. Add psychedelic substances and … get ready for a real trip.

A sensory isolation box, also known as a floating bath, is a light and sound-tight box that contains a bath of salt water solution that is highly concentrated at body temperature. The concentration of salt is so high that it can float on the water: the user has no contact with the walls or the ground. Floating slowly dissolves the boundaries of consciousness, between the inside and the outside.

They were originally created and used by  John C Lilly  to test the effects of sensory deprivation in the exploration of consciousness. The feeling of relaxation they offer has quickly become very popular, and sensory isolation boxes can be found in every major city.

SENSORY PRIVACY

Flotation therapy is about floating in a totally enclosed environment where you can not see, hear or feel any external stimulation. This has a calming effect on the brain and causes it to transition to a meditative state. The brain goes from using alpha or beta brain waves to theta waves. Theta brainwaves are commonly associated with the period just before waking up naturally, that of the rapid or paradoxical sleep phase, where dreams are most alive. The difference with a sensory isolation chamber is that there is no loss of consciousness. This allows you to enjoy long periods of time when theta waves are used for creativity, problem solving or deep relaxation.

In general, sensory Isolation tank sessions in Melbourne are used for either passive or active brain activity. A passive activity is simply to use the box to enter a meditative state, calming for the mind. An active state is, as previously noted, a state where brain relaxation is used for other purposes.

Just by themselves, the deep provoked meditative states can be strongly altering for consciousness, but John Lily has gone further: he has added psychedelic substances.

PSYCHEDELIC SUBSTANCES IN A SENSORY INSULATION BOX

The discovery of the sensory isolation boxes took place just before the psychedelic rebirth of the 1960s. But it was only ten years after inventing these boxes that Lily was introduced to LSD and magic mushrooms. In his quest to explore the nature of the mind, he consumed LSD and Ketamine in combination with the use of his cribs. He described his first experience with these substances in a box as the entrance into a “deeply altered state”, in which he traveled in the universe, communicated with beings from other worlds and even gave birth to him.