Relaxation and Torture

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I decided to try Restricted Environmental Stimuli Therapy, also known as sensory deprivation or floatation therapy. For those of you who aren’t familiar, it’s an easy way to trick you brain into a meditative theta wave state; or a cruel form of torture.

It was invented in 1954 by John C. Lilly to test the effects of sensory deprivation. He had some pretty interesting ideas and also seemed to be a little weird.

“In neurophysiology, there had been an open question as to what keeps the brain going and the origin of its energy sources. One hypothesis was that the energy sources are biological and internal and do not depend upon the outside environment. It was argued that if all stimuli are cut off to the brain then the brain would go to sleep. Lilly decided to test this hypothesis and, with this in mind, created an environment which totally isolated an individual from external stimulation. From here, he studied the origin of consciousness and its relation to the brain” –Wikipedia

Not really surprising he progressed into ripping high doses of ketamine and LSD before floating to try and connect his mind with the heart of the universe.

I have no desire to try either of those drugs, especially while floating in a dark, coffin-like vessel. Something about that screams potentially terrifying experience.

I started reading reviews on the subject and found a whole range of hilarious testimonials. They ranged from really interesting to the totally deranged. A large proportion of the testimonials seemed to come from people who smoke dandelions and post daily updates regarding the crisis at Fukashima. Not all the reviews were positive; I even found one person who didn’t seem to enjoy themselves at all.

“The second I switched off that glowing blue light, my pleasant flying feeling vanished and my mind turned to thoughts of snakes. Hundreds of tiny snakes writhing under and around me. I wasn’t on drugs and I’ve never before had a pronounced phobia of snakes, but there I was, trapped in a bathtub filled with snake fear, tepid water, and the sound of my own terrified panting.” – Stranger

Other reviews seemed to be more sincere and thought provoking.

“It’s like a million annoying voices whinging inside your head 24/7 finally shut the fuck up. And for the first time you realise that those voices existed at all, because you had never heard the sound of them not being there. You realise that noise that fills your head are not your thoughts. It’s just the echo of the shitty outside world seeping inside your head making you believe the things it wants you think.” – Reddit

All of them made me want to try even more.

I remember hearing Joe Rogan rant about how awesome these tanks were a couple years ago but forgot about the topic due to the scarcity of float clinics in Canada.

I came across my first float clinic while on my daily pilgrimage to find the best sandwich in Seattle. From the outside it looked like a cross between a sensual massage parlour and a yoga studio.

Although I had heard about these things before, I fucking lost it when I looked at the pricing. For a 45 minute float, you pay them $95. Yes, you pay almost a hundred dollars to sit in a glorified, enclosed bathtub for less than an hour.

So instead of getting some ol’ fashion cock work at the rub-n-tizzug, you can have a salty bath. My favourite part on their promotional brochure was that they are open late on weekends. That means if timed properly, and set up in advance, you would be able to hit the tank at 2am and release all the toxic liquor sludge out of your skin and meditate for a good part of an hour. To me it sounded like a potentially good way to stay healthy while offering a rare opportunity to reflect on your poor decisions before passing out.

I walk away laughing, trying to picture myself telling da boys I scheduled a salty bath for the way home.

I got back to my office and found a different float centre near my house that offers a $40 first time package for a 1hr float. I checked their schedule and lo and behold, an opening for 9pm. Before I had a chance to think rationally, I booked the slot and paid for it in advance.

I have to admit, the concept of tossing 1000lbs of salt into a little pool of water to simulate the sensation of floating in space is a pretty cool idea. Especially if you are doing so wearing earplugs, in complete darkness, in a giant sound proof coffin, in water set to the same temperature as your body.

I was led into a small room with a shower and a large meat freezer looking tank by a friendly attendant who gave the impression he works full time at a float clinic. He explained all the things I was supposed to do. You have to shower before and after the tank. He explained what shampoo and soap were along with some kind of wax you can place on open cuts and a small vile of an alcohol and vinegar solution which I can only assume you are supposed to drink.  He said a bunch of other stuff too but I was too excited to pay attention properly.

I wish I was better at listening.

I peeled off my clothes and had quick shower before getting ready to get in the tank. I shut off the lights in the room and opened the door to the chamber. Soft blue LEDs illuminate an interior of what looked like garbage bags glued to the walls. As I try to ignore the dexter-esqe potential of the murder chamber I’m entering, I gracefully slip in and flip onto my back.

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When I say graceful I mean flop on back like a fucking Nestea commercial. I took the plunge like a damn boss. As I smashed my head off the hard ground, I wondered why my friendly attendant didn’t mention the bathtub was only 10 inches deep. Perhaps this was his revenge for my clearly inattentive blank stare during his opening spiel.

I immediately shut off the lights to try and maximize my time in the coffin.

As promised, I am suddenly overpowered with powerful emotions. Unfortunately for me, it’s in the form of severe pain. I quickly noticed that I forgot to put the wax on my freshly skinned knuckle. I spent the first few minutes trying to block out the acute stinging before deciding I should probably get out. I felt like such a pussy having to get out after 3 minutes. I shit you not, those three minutes of pain were spent deciding whether or not anyone could tell I had to get out early. A small cut on my finger wasn’t about to ruin it for me. I turn on the lights in the tank and opened my eyes. The cut quickly became the least of my worries. After blasting my head off the ground, my face had become covered in super saturated salt water

Much like an open wound, I quickly learned how much your eyeballs dislike salty substances (sorry ladies). Blinded, I frantically waved my limbs around under the outside hatch looking for the emergency water sprayer. I sprayed the cold water directly in my pupils.

I still had the vision of an elderly dog with salty cataracts so I was barely able to stumble over to the wound wax. Blind and retarded, I obviously put way too much goop on my cut. I end up with it all over both my hands. I then remembered I didn’t have any way to clean it off other than my clean towel.

Naturally I say fuck it, and hop back in the tank. I slide back in carefully this time to avoid repeat concussions.

I finally got to relax for a bit and let my mind wander. I try and stretch out to find a good position where I am not using any effort to keep my eyes out of the water.

The first thing I notice as I lay there weightless is that my body has never felt that useless. It was a new frontier for my mangled up frame. My body seemed more eager to twitch and spasm than it did to relax. I also had a strange sensation of feeling the weight of the air above my body more than the pressure from below.

Next I decided to try and do some of the weird poses that my helpful attendant mentioned beforehand. He suggested I put my hands above my head and throw my back into one of those gold medal Chinese gymnast poses.

“You’ll never forget that first time when you’re looking behind you like that man. I swear it never gets old”

He was right!

As I arch my back and cock my neck back, my forehead dips into the water and I experienced some weird form of meditative vertigo that was akin to lying on the ground after receiving a hard blow to the head. I mean that in the best way possible.

The unforgettable part came after when I remembered reading a testimonial before my float.

“The most amazing part comes when you are able to open your eyes in complete darkness. Powerful, emotional hallucinations overpower your body and mind as you float in peaceful serenity.”

I obviously had to try this.

I slowly open my eyes, wary of the potential salt bombardment I faced early, and quickly found this review to be slightly embellished.

For the first 2 seconds I start to see some pulsating pockets of light not unlike the after effects of staring into a laser pointer or the sun. Much like staring at the sun, my eyes quickly erupted into a salty blaze once again. This time it felt as though there was rock salt being rammed into my tear ducts.

I knew the light wouldn’t help me this time. I sat up and blindly started reaching up for escape hatch. I was incredibly disorientated and managed to ram both hands into the burning hot space heater above.

Here I was, lucky enough to have all my fingertips burnt while Satan chucked loads of fire jizz into my eyeballs; truly an unforgettable experience.

I made my way out of the tank for the second time and attempted to clean out my eyeballs once again. This time the damage was done and I could feel the inflammation growing in and around my eyes. I decided to just keep my eyes closed the rest of the time.

I flopped back in the tank and got water directly in my nose. Like an idiot, I sniffed the water in further instead of blowing out. Don’t ask me why I did this, I have no idea. Regardless, the salt water was so potent it slowly rendered my nasal passages useless.

I was actually able to get reasonably relaxed listening and focussing on my breathing before the pulsating sensation of oxygen deprivation kicked in from not being able to breathe properly.

I got to spend the last bit of my float panting like a dog, enjoying my severely inflamed tear ducts with saltwater dripping into the back of my throat through my nearly fully constricted nasal passages.

The weird part was that once I got out and showered, I felt extremely relaxed and fresh.  I felt content with the world around me. It feels like walking around in post coital bliss. I can only imagine this effect would be even more pronounced if the time inside the tank didn’t resemble a sadistic torture chamber experience.

Trying again soon

Creationism, Evolution and Bestiality

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My Theory of Life

There is clearly life in the universe. I am alive… you are alive… things are alive. This life came from somewhere, or maybe it is just a thing. Human beings were probably not the first forms of life in the universe. We were not even the first forms of life on this earth.

People are conscious, self-aware, intelligent creatures. Most of the other shitty animals around us do not really have anything figured out in comparison to us. They all have different skill sets, but for the most part they stick to instinctual acts like eating, sleeping and banging.

Some animals are widely known to be smarter and craftier than the rest, mostly the ones at the top of the food chain. You have animals like dolphins, bears, big cats, wolves, horses, elephants and monkeys who are clearly smarter than the other animals that surround them.

This begs the question… Which one would you rather bang?

Seriously… from a logical, bio-evolutionary point of view, if you had to make a new species with any animal, which one would you choose?

Bears are terrifying, if you could inseminate a bear, your baby would look like a demon. I can imagine trying to poke a bear is generally a poor idea.

Cougars, lions and tigers are all really fast. You would make a fast cat-child.  The drawback is cats can’t carry anything heavy. They can’t because they have weak little spines and shitty hands, also, probably scary to bang.

Wolves, again, shitty hands, scary to bang, kind of creepy.

Dolphins are supposedly smart but who really gives a fuck about some kind of fat little ocean snake with teeth and no arms. A dolphin is absolutely useless out of the water. I am going to go ahead and say I would rather live on land than in the water.

Although mullets are cool and people are already having sex with horses out there; I would not want my offspring to have a gangly-ass neck and permanent uncomfortable shoes.

Half elephant children might be cool. I’m sure its fun to have a face dick that can grab stuff but whatever. I’m also going to assume that inseminating an elephant would not be a one man job.

Monkeys have hands. Monkeys are smart. Monkeys can climb shit. A monkey would not be overly challenging to bang.

If you ask me, I would hypothetically choose to bang a monkey.

If your still reading you must be wondering what the fuck I’m talking about at this point. Stay with me, I’ll get to the point soon.

There are two predominant theories on the origin of man; Darwin’s Theory of Evolution and Jesus’ Theory of Creationism.

Both are a little fucked up if you ask me.

It’s too bad the majority of creationists I read about are such close-minded, arrogant assholes. They are pretty close to explaining the origins of man but just have to believe god created the world in seven days, 10000 years ago. This could or would never happen. Why would anyone be so hasty in the creation of a damn planet. If you were god, wouldn’t you take your sweet time? The earth is billions of years old, not thousands. Ignoring that fact, their story on the creation of man goes as follows. God is hanging out getting all bored with the stupid animals he created a while back. He decides it might be a good idea to get some brains down there on earth. In comes Adam and Eve. God looked in the mirror, made himself, then made a hot babe he would want to bang and blew some life into the both of them. I see this as the most plausible way this would happen if god is a cool as people say. It also seems completely unrealistic based on the established laws of science. I do not disagree that there is some higher form of energy out there. I just have trouble believing anyone could build a human, even god. We are astoundingly complex machines.

The other theory out there is evolution. I feel like evolution generally makes a lot of sense. It does not really explain how life came to earth in the first place, but you can fill in the blanks. Considering we know that life does exist, it’s logical to assume that some sort of single celled organism was attached to some asteroid frozen temporarily in the icy rock core. When it smashed into earth, he probably just crawled out and started his new life on earth. It could have just ended up on earth randomly in the creation of our planet. Regardless how that little guy ended up here is irrelevant, the point is he lived on.

Continually faced with new challenges on his new home, he was forced to grow and adapt. In doing so, his offspring gradually changed and became more comfortable in their surroundings. This is evolution. This mostly explains the current mix of animals and bugs when you consider it happening over a billion years or so.

Why are we the only ones to evolve so far and beyond our surrounding peers? Humans have effectively gained control of the earth. Never in history has there been such a dominant form of life that literally has the power to fuck over everything else. Historically, creatures on top of the  food chain left each other alone because the meat wasn’t worth the chase.

You can point to evolution to explain how we came from monkeys and gradually got smarter to adapt to our changing environments. It would make a lot more sense if all the other types of animals did the same.

One theory is that monkeys stumbled upon psilocybin mushrooms in the jungle. The monkey which ate the mushroom mostly likely freaked the fuck out. He would have hallucinated a whole bunch and had some crazy thoughts. It would have forced monkeys to think about things that are not real and also developed an abstract world view. This powerful moment was likely the catalyst for ‘human’ evolution.

I still do not see monkeys being the only animals trying out mushrooms. As soon as Mr. Tiger saw Mr. Monkey chow down, I’m assuming he would follow suit, strictly because that’s how life works.

There is a better explanation for all of this. The evolution of intelligent life did not happen on Earth. It seems too weird that everything else is so stupid. I think that on some other world, intelligent life forms developed over billions of years.

I believe that consciousness was a gift to us from aliens.

I imagine when they developed technology they would have done the same thing as what we are trying to do now. Find hospitable planets. Next, when possible, they would attempt to travel to said planets.

They probably started off living on a world like ours. Like us they would have made discoveries along the way about how to extract more energy from the world they live in. Inevitably they sucked all the life out their planet in the thirst for higher technology. The saving grace for them is that high technology gave them the capability to leave.

Their bodies would’ve evolved to adjust to their surroundings. I suspect they these aliens lived in controlled environments, augmented by technology that did all the work for them. This would leave them hairless, weak and incredibly smart.

They would have known their world was ending.

It seems feasible that they would have detected earth and traveled to it, without knowing what to expect. I imagine they arrived thousands of years ago and stumbled upon a natural habitat not unlike the one we currently live in. There would have been a shit load more nature, less destruction, and no humans. The wildlife would have been more diverse, but generally the same is what we have now.

I think these hairless, googly-eyed, smart-ass aliens looked around and quickly realized they did not have the body to survive in our harsh climate. On a strange new world, they lacked the tools to industrialize and develop all the abundant resources. They needed to get stronger.

Obviously the aliens had a complete understanding of genetics. If we know as much as we do now, imagine what we would know in 10000 years if we don’t fuck up.

This brings us back to the “which animal would you rather bang” scenario.

I think the aliens chose the monkey and cloned it with themselves. Their aim would have been to preserve their own consciousness but host it within a more capable, primitive body.

They created Adam and Eve.

Who knows if they are still here. I feel like if I had a cool project like making a new race, I would have some sort on invested interest to help it out along the way. Or maybe it’s their consciousness that lives inside of us to this day.

I think that periodically throughout history, humans have been nudged in the right direction through the development of new technology. I doubt they do this directly, otherwise I think we would know more about them.

If our own consciousness was a gift from them, could it not seem plausible that they could affect it how they see fit?

You never know though, that world changing invention could have just been a random thought.