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Sensory Deprivation Tanks and Psychedelics Explained With Christian Dockstader of True North Float

Woman floating on water

Have you ever wondered what lies beyond the confines of everyday waking perception? Many view sensory deprivation tanks as more than just a relaxation tool. Christian Dockstader describes it as, "the float tank's kind of a portal that you can use to kind of go into the inner realm or in the inner landscape, the inner frontier, the terra incognita, the unexplored frontier of the human mind and our consciousness." Through his personal journey in these flotation tanks, Dockstader found resolution from past traumas, (re)discovered life's purpose, and gained clarity on realities transcending ordinary limits.

In a recent interview on the Portier Psychedelic Podcast, Dockstader shares illuminating insights into floatation's capacity for growth, healing, and insight. Having guided his own exploration to establish True North Float Center, he now facilitates similar voyages for others seeking relief from suffering. Within his dedicated float rooms, minimal distractions allow concentrated focus on interior landscapes oft-neglected. Repeated sessions cultivate an increasingly lucid presence within what Dockstader evocatively termed the "inner frontier."

Floating as a Portal for Self-Discovery

Floating, also known as sensory deprivation or flotation therapy, has gained popularity in recent years as a tool for relaxation and stress relief. However, it is much more than just a way to unwind. It can be a powerful portal for exploring the mind and consciousness.

The concept of floating involves entering a float tank, which is a container or room filled with salt water. The high salt concentration allows the body to effortlessly float on the surface, creating a sensation of weightlessness. The water is heated to match the temperature of the skin, further enhancing the feeling of being in a state of complete relaxation.

Christian Dockstader, the founder of True North Float in Utah, describes floating as a physical and psychological healing experience. It provides an opportunity to disconnect from the external world and turn inward, focusing on the body and mind. This inward focus allows for deep introspection and self-reflection.

The Floating Frequency

Every individual's relationship with floating is unique. Christian's observations reflect the diverse patterns of floaters. Some are drawn to the tank every week, seeking regular moments of tranquility. Others reserve the experience for special occasions or when they feel the pressing need for introspection. Budget, personal preferences, and objectives dictate this rhythm.

Combining Floating with Psychedelics

There's a potential synergy when you pair floating with psychedelics such as ketamine, psilocybin, and others. Christian Dockstader introduces the concept of "visionary floats." These are floating sessions enhanced with the use of substances, particularly psychedelics. Starting with even a minimal dose, such as half a gram to a gram of psilocybin mushrooms, can profoundly amplify the floating experience. While a standard 90-minute float can be transformative on its own, combining it with psychedelics can extend the duration and depth of the session.

However, it's crucial to approach this combination with caution, respect, and proper guidance. Psychedelics are powerful tools, and their effects can be unpredictable. It's essential to be well-informed and possibly under the guidance of a professional when embarking on such a journey.

The Intricacies of Building a Float Tank

While the idea of having a personal float tank at home might sound enticing, the reality is far more complex. Constructing a proper float environment is a technical challenge. Many factors come into play, from soundproofing against external noises to ensuring the tank is fully light-proof and salt-proof.

Christian highlights that even professional float businesses sometimes struggle to perfect the environment. Achieving the ideal setting where one can truly disconnect from the external world and dive deep into introspection requires meticulous planning and substantial investment.

For those new to the experience or perhaps apprehensive about the silence, Christian offers a solution: underwater headphones. These devices, while simple, can be transformative. They act as bridges, connecting individuals to guided meditations and breathwork, thereby easing their transition into the depths of their minds.

Christian's Personal Journey

Christian Dockstader's personal journey with floating exemplifies the transformative power of this practice. After initially trying floating without much impact, he rediscovered its potential through a combination of floating, breathwork, and psychedelics. This experience opened up new doors of perception and led him to establish True North Float, a center dedicated to providing flotation therapy to the community.

And with True North Float, he's made it his mission to share that gift with others.

His float center is more than an experience; it's a beacon for those seeking change. It's about shifting perspectives—from feeling trapped by life's events to seizing control. At True North, floating isn't just therapy; it's a way to rewrite your life story.

True North's Vision

Beyond personal transformation, Christian's vision for True North is grand. He dreams of a community—a collective of independent creators. It's about bridging divides, between business owners and the collective, between isolation and community.

Person floating in a float tank
Person floating in a float tank
True North Float, floatcenter in St. George Utah
True North Float, floatcenter in St. George Utah

The Ripple Effect of Floating

Floating can be a turning point. It's more than just relaxation. In that tank, you confront your fears. You face your limitations. And sometimes, you discover wisdom you didn't know you had.

Christian Dockstader once reflected on such moments, saying, "And when you experience that, and it's blissful, and you're like, wow, it's kind of empowering, you know, like, if the lights go off, and if everything stops, who's to say that's like a terrifying or a bad thing, you know?" Such testimonials highlight the transformative potential of these sessions.

Everyone's float journey is unique. Some see vivid colors and patterns. Others dive deep into memories long forgotten. And some? They just relish the calm, the silence, the peace.

But one thing's clear: floating can be a catalyst. It's a space of safety, exploration, and, often, revelation. You get to understand yourself a bit more. You unearth hidden facets of your psyche. And sometimes, you set out on a whole new path of self-discovery.


In conclusion, floating is not just a relaxation technique; it is a portal for self-discovery. By entering a state of weightlessness and sensory deprivation, individuals can access heightened states of consciousness and explore the depths of their subconscious. When combined with psychedelics, floating becomes an even more potent tool for introspection and personal growth. It offers a unique opportunity to confront unresolved emotions, gain insights, and develop a deeper understanding of oneself. Whether used as a standalone practice or in combination with other modalities, floating has the potential to unlock the mysteries of the mind and facilitate profound self-discovery.

To learn more about Christian Dockstader's floatation-assisted transformations, listen to his in-depth discussion on the Portier Psychedelic Podcast here.


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