“ Go inside the cave
of your own heart.
When you can bear and
be your own emptiness,
you are free 


Limitless space

I am here, nothing left to do, 
nothing to look at if only within. Dive into the unknown,
no more excuses.  
Who is the one that 
and replies to itself?
Silence held by the infinite darkness.

Pitch black

The domes become alive
Myriads of lights in motion
Crispy subtle sounds
Fullness of presence
Emptiness of being


There are healing benefits you naturally receive by staying in complete darkness. From the Thaoism to Ayurveda, neurology, the secretion of melatonin and DMT.

The effects of staying in the dark are unique and powerful. An opening of the third eye takes place. It enhances perception and leads to vast mindscapes, astral lights and sounds, deep states, profound realisations.

However, after all my retreats in the domes, this is what makes the dark retreat so special:

The Dark Retreat offers a supportive space for truth seekers who want to face themselves.

What do I mean by that?

Regardless of the background of practice, there is a stage where genuine seekers know they have done and learn enough for now.

They feel ready to rely on inner truth to guide them to freedom.

It comes a time when they feel the pull to try out their practice without the physical presence and support from a teacher or the supportive energy of a group.

It's rare to find such a place, its a standard format with retreats or workshops to rest on the teacher/student relationship.

I have nothing against this format; I have much gratitude for many teachers alive now or who left their body long ago. They helped me and still support me with their presence and teachings.

All right teachers point to the truth but can not carry you there.

It's all about offering a space to go inside, to trust the heart guidance, silence and to accept where you are at entirely.

It's a time that reveals hidden identifications, shadows and reset, readjust you to a deeper sense of you.

Are you up for that?

A yes without second thoughts means that the fire of wanting to sit alone in the dark is hot enough to burns all doubts and hesitations. Hindrances come up, but the fire doesn't give them a chance to grow.

It's radical to seek the truth. Nothing more radical than truth itself.

If you feel some hesitations to jump in a solo retreat but feel the attraction, check our meditation group retreats to prepare you.

The Ayurvedic approach

In India, the retreats in darkness are usually called Kaya Kalpa retreats. The term kaya means "body" and kalpa means "ageless," or "immortal." Kaya Kalpa literally means "ageless body" or “body fashioning”.
 It is an Ayurvedic treatment for rejuvenating the body, calling for seclusion in darkness, meditation, along with the application of various herbal concoctions. 

It is even seen as a form of Yoga and Ayurvedic medicine that was developed in South India at about the same time that Hatha Yoga was being developed. Kaya Kalpa has three main objectives: 

1. Slowing the aging process
2. Maintaining excellent physical health and youthful vitality
3. Delaying physical death

Brain biochemistry

According to Taoist master Mantak Chia (in the book Darkness Technology):
“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)

“Melatonin, the ‘sleep molecule’, is produced in the pineal gland, in response to the darkness of night, and to the circadian rhythms of light and dark that are programmed into the hypothalamus, an endocrine gland located deep within the brain. Melatonin affects major organ systems, quieting the sympathetic nervous system and allowing daily rejuvenation of mind and body".

The Hermetic perspective

The Dark Retreat has great correspondences with the Alchemical work.
Alchemical preparations begins with Nigredo, or blackness.

This first phase is putrefaction or decomposition in the pathway to the philosopher stone. All alchemical ingredients are cleansed and cooked extensively to a uniform black matter. This is the return to formless chaos.

The white phase follows and finally the red phase of Spiritual freedom.

The journey into Darkness is the essence of the spiritual alchemical work, without it, the individual will remain only at the superficial level of mere rational thinking and social existence, dominated by beliefs.

"Visita Interiora, Terrae Rectificando, Occultum Lapidem"  
Visit the interior of the earth,
Rectify what you find there,
You will discover the hidden stone..

Yogic Tradition

The yogis associate the fluid of eternal life, Soma, with the energy of the moon. Soma is charging the human being during the night. Soma is burn by the inner sun during the day providing the energy manifested during wakefulness. 
In this case, the day is the symbol of all dualisms and of the personal domain of action, while the night is the symbol of eternity, contemplation, regeneration and centeredness.

Dark Retreat is an advanced practice in the Dzogchen lineages of the Nyingmapa, Bönpo, and other schools of Tibetan Buddhism. The time period dedicated to dark retreat varies from a few hours to decades. 

Dark retreat in the Himalayan tradition is a restricted practice only to be engaged by the senior spiritual practitioner under appropriate spiritual guidance. This practice is considered conducive for navigating the bardo at the time of death and for realising the rainbow body. 

The traditional dark retreat requires stability in the natural state and is only suitable for advanced practitioners.