Tabula Rasa 2.0 is a service that takes users back to the blank slate state, where they are uncorrupted by their experiences, biases, and backgrounds.
The experience first begins with an hourlong sensory deprivation session. Tabula Rasa 2.0 uses existing sensory deprivation tank facilities, such as FLOAT in Boston, to keep costs down. During this hour, the user floats in a pod or tank that is pitch-black on the inside and filled with salty, body-temperature water. The purpose of this treatment is to erase the worries of the user, taking them to a state of utmost inner calm and tranquility– no emotions, no thoughts, no stimulation, no distractions.
The exit of the tank is incredibly vital, as it resembles the transition of a newborn from the womb of the mother to the material world. My inspiration for this project came from reading about people’s experiences during this very moment– when they first step out of the tank and the feeling of absolute disorientation that floods their senses.
When the user exits, he/she will exit the tank, put on a robe and enter a chamber where he will undergo an all encompassing first-person narrative showcasing the life of an individual that shares opposite views. One such example is viewing the daily life of say a Trump voter, which would include scenes such as perhaps an idyllic afternoon fishing or the devastating bankruptcy of a mom and pop shop.
After, the user enters another chamber where he meets a stranger who has just undergone the same experience. Together, they view a film that conveys the common human struggle– such as the need for financial security or family stability.
My hope is to to bring biased (perhaps aggressively so) and close-minded individuals the opportunity to experience the other side. By first subjecting them to the sensory deprivation tank, they let their inhibitions down and become more available to and accepting of the sensations around them. Upon exiting, they will have the mind-state of newborn babies and will be much more open to understanding opposing viewpoints.