Watch as Martin Glanert, (Bharati’s husband and a Darkness Retreat Counsellor himself) talks about spiritual practices, and the kind of spiritual experiences people might have during their Darkness Retreat. Enjoy!
(However, if you prefer, there is also a summary of what Martin talks about below the video)
Martin has just finished a 10-day Darkness Retreat, and he shares all that can happen within one (not, not all of this happened to him in his Retreat – his summary is based both on his own experience and that of other Retreat guests who have shared their what happened for them with us). Your personal experience can depend on how long you are in the Darkness Retreat for, how much meditation you have done before, and how intensively you are present in the Darkness Retreat; what your aim is for doing one.
Some people just want to get away from their busy lives and relax in the darkness, and that’s OK. Even they can still have spiritual experiences during their Retreat. However, there are also those who really long to experience the Divine and want deeper spiritual experiences. So in those cases, we chant mantras with our guests and meditate together, which increases the speed of everything happening.
So what can happen? After a few days, you start to recognise that even in absolute darkness, it’s not completely dark. As your eyes start to adjust, the black turns to grey and you begin to see material things and non-material things. That’s the idea of Darkness Retreats – normally you rely on your visual senses throughout your daily life – 80% of information comes through your visual senses, and so when you block that, you have no way of looking at life how you usually do. So then astral dimensions start to emerge, because the gap between the two realities gets smaller the longer you are in the Retreat. Then you may start to see lights, sense energy and even potentially hear astral sounds.
Our guests are actually given the option of having a mirror in their room, as it can act as a gateway to other dimensions, so it’s much easier to see the light and hear the sounds with one. Though some people can be a little scared by that thought, which is why it is optional. So as mentioned, within a few days, the ‘astral disco’ often begins – lights of different colours, shapes and intensity. In that way, the darkness goes away. Every brain interprets things differently, because the astral dimension is very different from our human one, so each of us makes our own interpretation.
A big goal for many participants is to have an astral being come and give Darshan in physical form, and most guests who have stayed for a longer period of time (at least 6-7 days) have that experience. One such time was with a guest who rang the bell for someone to come (all guests have a bell to ring, to access support and/or to share their experiences at any time of day or night) and as Bharati arrived, she saw a purple light shining out from under the door of the guest’s Darkness Retreat room. Apparently he had seen a short man with a white scarf around his head, and a very soft face. Later, we showed him a painting of Vallala Ramalinga, and he confirmed it had been him. This can be a very beautiful and heart-opening experience.
Why do these spiritual experiences happen in the darkness? Because once we let go of the visual sense, we also let go of the concept of the outer world. We come back to what is within us, that Divine source of information and knowledge. We understand things more clearly, have insights about ourselves and our heart opens, because it is easier for other souls to connect with us when we are in that state, and share their wisdom.
We are happy to connect you with other people who have completed a Retreat with us, even those who had no spiritual background, to share details of their experiences with you. However, the only true way is to experience it for yourself, because belief about certain things can only take you so far. So if you would like to know more about doing a Darkness Retreat for yourself, please contact us, we are more than happy to answer all of your questions.