I think I’ve got the smoke down. Still tinkering with the lighting. Any amount of light seems to be too much. I’m down to a single black taper candle now and it’s still too bright. When I blew out the candle after the last ritual it was like WOW. The darkness was amazing. This big, cosmic darkness - you hear these things described, but you get the impression of being alone against some horrifying void. This felt like home. Anyway, I realized I need that darkness in combination with the smoke, which means a lot less freaking light. Anybody got some good ideas for how I can get a small closed-off space dark and still have enough light to see? I’m working in a room without windows so I can have total darkness anytime.
I also wanted to note - I think I already know this state you’re trying to get to. It’s like the lights going down in a theater - everything gets darker and you notice that suddenly all sound has completely ceased, except sometimes there’s a howling wind, usually in the distance. For me, this never actually seems like an altered state, except sometimes afterward when I come out of it I’ll realize how “out of it” I was. Other people describe it like they’re on the verge of passing out. So I think I was aiming for a new experience when it was actually a state I already knew from previous workings where I wasn’t expecting physical manifestation. Thoughts?