hygienic darkroom retreat

profound rest for the self‑healing psyche

a book by andrew durham


2020 November 11


A - Would you like to help solve the crisis?
B - Yes. What will we do?
A - We will become the kind of people who can solve it.
B - What kind is that?
A - Super powerful people. Super power generates enormous personal presence and influence. It is irresistable. It inspires hope, imagination, and initiative in witnesses.

Under its influence, others remember themselves. Their current lives can suddenly seem strange to them. They immediately change course toward sanity and freedom. They ask how to do it.

Politicians and the ultra-rich share this response. Their native personal power is only a little more than usual. The rest is artificial, from strange practices. They leverage this into external power: government, finance, technology, etc. It is a house of cards.

The living power of a restored individual dwarfs theirs. They are desperate for real power, for an alternative to their manipulative strategy.
B - How do we get such power?
A - By recovering it. This power is natural to us. We lost it.
B - How did we lose it?
A - Through mass major trauma. A global cataclysm thousands of years ago caused it. The extent of the destruction left our ancestors no chance to heal. Their trauma came down to us through hundreds of generations.
B - How do we heal?
A - As organisms, we are self-healing, given the proper conditions. The primary condition of healing is profound rest.
B - What is profound rest?
A - It lasts longer than daily rest, with perfected conditions.
B - How do we do it?
A - The most profound rest occurs in total darkness. Combining it with other conditions of rest makes a hygienic darkroom retreat. We will study my book about it, build an excellent darkroom, and learn to support each other’s retreats.
B - Are you saying all we have to do is rest in darkness and thousands of years of suffering will evaporate?
A - Yes. Just as power is natural, so is trauma. Trauma comes from the collisions of a material universe. So nature, in its perfection, provides the conditions for healing from it, primarily darkness. It is that simple.

Freedom is also natural. We are already as free as we are capable of being. We will simply recover our original capacity for it.

Nothing spreads faster among people than the influence of super powerful people. Five or ten of us, each 10 times more powerful than Gandhi or Martin Luther King, Jr, can quickly reverse the crisis. First results will appear in three months and newsworthy ones in a year. We’ll finish in 3-5 years. In a decade, this crisis will seem like a distant dream.
B - I have never heard of this. It sounds mythical. Yet it makes sense. I will have more questions, but I must read and think about it. I will talk to you again soon.

[to be continued]


Let’s enact the above scene, end the crisis, and restore humanity to sanity. It will take a team of ~20, but just 4 to start.


The following is just an example. It’s already happening differently. Two potential sites are found. Costs will be extremely low, in the hundreds of dollars per person. This enables self-funding.

  • organization
    • you arrange funding, locations, suppliers, security, logistics, legal
    • I handle instruction, design, construction, and operation
    • we:
      • plan the work
      • start writing a manual for whole process: notes and updates made throughout process
      • and assemble a team: building, web/creative, legal (youarelaw.org), secretary (writing of manual), treasury, ?
  • retreat
    • I begin conferring with team remotely
      • about project
      • darkness: theory, protocol, design
    • team reads my book
    • you:
      • scout three locations for darkroom #1
      • plan where to scout for darkroom #2
      • arrange a month’s shelter and transport for me
    • I:
      • rendevous with team within six weeks
      • darkroom #1
        • select house from scouted locations
        • darken it with team
        • support team’s first retreats
        • train team as supporters
      • continue instruction
      • darkroom #2
        • scout locations
          • for medium retreats (3-8 weeks)
          • new buildings
          • round, 3-6m diameter/7-30m2
          • space for 5-16 of them in two clusters: staff and guests
        • build
          • with team
          • darkroom, 3 huts
          • support medium retreats
          • train further
      • write manual
  • influence
    • organic
      • do what you’ve seen in darkness to do
      • weekly group reports
      • be an ambassador: meet influencers of all classes; every kind becomes reachable
      • help others to the darkroom; find the ten who will turn the tide
    • politics
      • Individualist Party: for a distributed state
        • defines non-binding legal precepts
        • focuses on private sector: a distributed state will obsolete the centralized one
        • members who focus on centralized state will have an inverted strategy: not to win but to expose what is happening through satirical public relations (like Yes Men) and show alternative
        • runs volunteer embassy to meet influential outsiders
      • distributed state
        • individuals legislate for themselves by applying precepts in private contracts
        • a contract specifies private defenders and judges to enforce it
        • thus the legislature, executive, and judiciary are distributed throughout society at the individual level
      • openly, satirically conspiracist*
      • legal aid**
      • references
        • Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal, Ayn Rand
        • Market for Liberty, Morris and Linda Tannehill
        • Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Robert Heinlein
        • *Our Universal Journey, George Kavassilas
        • *Total Onslaught, Walter Veith (video series)
        • **YouAreLaw.org, TJ Marrs
    • Human Conditions Co
      • raises money through darkroomretreat.com/presale
      • rents/buys and takes over darkroom operation
      • expands facility to 6 darkrooms, 16 buildings total
      • performs all functions: R&D, instruction, services, manufacturing

The following is an example budget purely in terms of money. Comparable offers of other values considered. At minimum, I’d like to decently survive the crisis while being useful reversing it.

$a $b item
6000   fee to begin
~24000   project
  ~300 my lodging and transport, first month there
  ~700 darkroom #1 (rent + <400 for modifications)
  11000 salary (11 months@1000)
  ~9000 darkroom #2 ($6k) and huts (3@$1k)
  ~3000 influence mission seed fund
~30000   total
  • mission becomes self-supporting from:
    • donations
      • political
      • productivity of participants increases
    • royalties from spin-offs like Human Conditions
  • once complete, breaks up or changes focus
    • becomes Freedom Skunk Works to stay at the bleeding edge of social renewal
    • supports Individualist Party somehow to support social sanity worldwide
    • ?
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