Out past Joshua Tree in a town called Landers sits the Integratron—a dome-shaped structure that was carefully constructed for healing sound baths. As the origin story goes, the original blueprints for the building were handed off to a man named George Van Tassel, by some extraterrestrials, which included inspiration from Moses’ Tabernacle and the writings of Nikola Tesla.
The structure is entirely constructed from wood and fiberglass, without the use of nails or screws. In addition to the building itself being a perfect wood-shaped structure for an all-encompassing sound bath experience, the location is also on a vortex, over aquifers, and has all kinds of other spiritually charged elements that amplify the area.
I recently attended a sound bath there and it was truly remarkable, from the beauty of the structure to the comfort of the pads we laid on, plus the fascinating insights my mom received during her experience, and the depth of relaxation I went into during mine.
The facilitator played a group of 20 quartz crystal singing bowls for about 35 minutes of the 60-minute experience inside the multi-wave sound chamber, which creates a binaural sound experience. The bowls are keyed to the chakras, and the combination of the building and the location creates a space where the “veils are thin,” and various forms of healing and spiritual experience can take place. Van Tessel—who received the blueprints back in 1953—says that the dome was “capable of rejuvenation, anti-gravity and time travel.”
Towards the beginning of the experience the facilitator said “if you’re one of those people who have wished you could climb inside a wood instrument, that’s basically what you did.” About 1/3 of the room murmured their appreciation. I was one of them, and firmly aware that I’d come to the right place. It reminded me of a time years ago when I tweeted something like “God lives in guitars” and someone asked me if I was high. Yeah high on healing soundwaves man, you should try it.
Without going into too much detail here about my throat chakra and many efforts to balance it, driving home after the Integratron experience my voice felt free in a way it hasn’t felt in a long time. I sang—or rather belted—all the way back to L.A. Some of this might have to do with the fact that I released so much muscle tension in the depth of my sound bath meditation. My back felt very relaxed as well.
Getting up the next morning and sitting down at my computer after such a peaceful day in the desert felt a bit bizarre, but rather than wander too deep into the ol’ existential questioning of what exactly I’m doing with my life and why, I decided to start looking for some sound baths closer to home—if not to replicate the Landers experience, at least to maintain some of the changes I felt after that day.
If it isn’t already obvious, I would 100% recommend a visit. Here to some things to know if you’re planning one:
- The Integratron is only open for part of the year (like many things out in the desert.) Reservations fill up fast and while they do accept walk-ins, acceptance is dependent on someone else not showing up. Make a reservation to ensure your entry!
- The time of the year that the Integratron is open can be very cold. My visit, at the end of March, was a whipping windy desert day. Landers is close to Joshua Tree but does not have the same weather. It was significantly colder! We bundled up and brought blankets for a comfortable experience during the sound bath.
- The nearby restaurants can get extremely busy. The closest option, La Copine, shuts down their walk-in list so definitely opt for reservations if possible. Other options down the way in Joshua Tree like the Joshua Tree Saloon can also be popping and rocking and rolling depending on the day. There it’s possible to eat at the bar or order appetizers in the outdoor area vs waiting for a table in the main dining room.
You’re also welcome to bring food and picnic on the Intengratron property, which offers couches and hammocks among other seating option. They also have a crystal shop on location, so if you’re interested in updating (or starting) your crystal collection with some that have undoubtedly been charged by this particular desert energy, it’s a one-stop shop.