Actor, Comedian, Ufc Host, Podcaster

“The sensory deprivation chamber has been the most important tool that i've ever used for developing my mind - for thinking, for evolving.” - Joe Rogan

In episode #40 of the Joe Rogan Experience, Rogan is joined by Tyler Knight, pornographic actor, blogger and novelist. In this cut, Rogan breaks in detail down how floating in his Sensory Deprivation Tank has changed his life.

 

[audio transcribe]

The sensory deprivation chamber has been the most important tool that i've ever used for developing my mind - for thinking, for evolving.

The (sensory deprivation) tank is filled with water, the water is heated to the same temperature as your body and there’s 800 pounds of salt in the water. So you just float there and relax and because the water’s the same temperature as your body you don't really feel it after a while.

It's like layers of an onion and when you first start doing the isolation tank you can only get a couple of layers of the onion in, a couple skins loose. You can’t really go to the core, it’s too hard. It’s too hard to completely let go of who you are. But as you get better at it and as you get more and more comfortable with the experience you get better at actually letting go, really letting go.

Letting go from letting go, letting go from the feeling of letting go, letting go from that point. Okay I’ve let go, no you haven’t, let go more. And then you become gone - you disappear. While you’re disappearing, this is what happens, you start thinking, I can believe I’m disappearing. Fuck, then you’re back again, you’ve gotta start from square one.

You’ve got to let go, you’ve got to let go, you’ve got to let go, and you’ve got to get to the point where you literally completely relax, and your body, it gives you amazing energy. Your body, the tension release that you have in your body from a couple of hours in the (sensory deprivation) tank is incredible. You feel lighter, you feel like more oxygen is in your body, you feel more vibrant, and it’s just because you’ve somehow or another calmed the tension. It’s fucking incredible man.

The first twenty minutes or so for me at least, it's like, sort of a seminar of my life. It shows me all the different issues in my life that i don’t like and that i need to fix, and things that are bothering me, and things about my own behaviour that could have been better, and things where I’m disappointed in myself. And then it will show me some things where I’m on the right track. This is good, continue here, continue doing this, continue thinking like this, continue exploring these ideas. But then once it gets me done, its like, lets clear out all this bullshit in your live, then, let’s think about the big picture.

And then it goes from that to like this sort of relaxing position, my whole body is just settled into the experience, and then it’s like, it’s just pure thought. It’s like the mind completely untethered from the body, and then i start contemplating everything. I start contemplating the universe, contemplating the role of human beings and each individual's actions all accumulating together to one specific event. I start thinking all kinds of crazy crazy shit. But without the body in the way.

You know, even us having this cool conversation here. We’re sitting here on a couch, we’re looking at each other, we’re looking at computers, and there’s sounds and noises and there’s a lot of distractions. You know, just your body is a distraction. You’ve got some crazy fucking environment that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the world and it’s fairly inexpensive to achieve.

If the (sensory deprivation) tank was something where it was a machine, and you would have to strap yourself in, and they would take you through a course where you would learn how to get to the centre of consciousness where your body and your mind didn’t exist, it would be like a ride at disneyland and the line would be seven hours long. But because it’s this weird sort of an organic method of doing it and it seems strange, like you’re going to get into this big coffin filled with water and you close the lid...

And people start coming up with reasons why they don’t want to do it.

It’s so important, everybody should do the tank. you will learn more about yourself than any other way, and if you have an aversion to drugs, which totally makes sense, if you think that drugs are dangerous, you get addicted to things, that’s true, you can. If you don’t trust yourself, you don’t like the idea, you can have very introspective, psychedelic experiences naturally in the tank. Everybody should be doing it, it’s a fucking amazing way to think!

I have concept or something that I’m working on, two things I’ll do. One, I’ll sit down, I’ll flesh it out, I’ll write what I think about things just kind of off the top of my head, and then, once I’ve done that, once I’ve really kind of explored it, then I get in the tank and I rethink the whole thing. And then when I rethink the whole thing, sometimes in the tank I consider other places, or other points of view, I consider other ways of looking at it where I may not have been as sensitive to another person’s opinion coming from another position and I look at the whole thing almost like outside of myself.

There’s so much thinking that goes on in that (sensory deprivation) tank, there’s so much evolution that goes on in there that it seems like it’s almost impossible to do outside of there, because there’s no distractions in there, nothing at all. It’s just the thought. It’s an amazing environment. It really should be taught in schools, all universities should have them, they should have them and they should make them available to all of their students. It’s one of the greatest tools ever for exploring thinking, exploring the way you think, and sort of, making an audit of all your own personal thoughts and ideas. Which one’s you’re hanging onto because of your ego, which one’s you’re hanging on to because they’re beneficial to you, which one’s you’re hanging onto because you hate your Dad, you know, he put these in your head and so, they’re stuck in there.

It’s so fascinating man, and so few people do it!