THE SECRET OF THE UFOs, PART I
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Intelligent Life in the Universe
Problems in Getting Here
The Critical Test of Civilizations
Evidence of Extraterrestrial Visitation
Government Interest in UFOs
Fear of Aliens
Why the Aliens Come in Peace
Aliens as Spirits, Fairies, or Angels
Why the Aliens are More than Observers
Showing off their Spacecraft
Crop Circles: Making a Statement
Alien Abductions: Part of a Publicity Campaign
Roswell: A New Hypothesis
The Extraterrestrial Doctrine of Limited Non-Interference
Von Daniken and the Ancient Astronaut Theory
What the Aliens are Doing
Alien Communication with the Earth: Methods, Messages, and Aims
More about the Aliens
Evolution of US Government Strategy and Philosophy Regarding the UFOs
The Psychological, Social, and Political "Threat" of the UFOs
Government Defense Strategy, and the Secret Government UFO Project
How Skepticism Works
Disinformation Strategy: Roswell
The Mack Attack: Or, If the Man Falls, So Does the Idea
How the Government Gets Others to Do its "Skeptical Work"
Disinformation Strategy: The Crop Circles
Disinformation Strategy: The Hudson River Valley Sightings
Disinformation Strategy: Cattle Mutilations. Or, Creating the "Sinister Alien"
To Believe or Not Believe: The Dual Option Strategy
Mimicking Operations: Or, Humans as ETs
The Contactee as Agent
The International Response
Concluding Remarks and Exhortations
The following book, which began as an essay or article, quickly got out of hand, as most things that I do, and ended up being far too long to fit into its originally intended format. But with a subject like UFOs - and with the vast potential significance of the phenomenon, which could literally alter the course of human history like nothing we have ever before experienced on this planet - how could it be otherwise? I threw "word counts" to the side, and just wrote as long as I felt I had to, trying to maintain a spirit of conciseness, a spirit of "getting to the heart of the matter", as I did so (or else I might still be writing today!)
My interest in UFOs? It goes back to childhood. I remember looking up at the stars, like many of you must have done, and wondering, imagining. Might some living being, on some faraway planet, be looking up into his night sky, beholding the tiny flicker of a star that was my sun, and wondering if he was alone, or if he had company in the Universe? I felt a strange bond with this unseen, distant star-gazer on those silent, awe-inspiring nights; and felt the sorrow of the vastness of space that separated us - and yet, did not.
And then, books came into my life; and naturally, among them were books of other planets, astronauts, "spacemen", and aliens. Science fiction like The Forgotten Door, Have Spacesuit Will Travel, The Runaway Robot, Revolt On Alpha Centauri… But fantasies were not my only food in those days. In fact, reality impressed me just as much, even more so. I remember, at that time, that my favorite map was not the map of any country of the earth, but a map of the solar system, with all of our sun’s worlds gathered about it, vivid, mysterious, like treasures in the blackness. I also read books on science, books on the mysteries of the planets, and outer space - the "canals" of Mars, the rings of Saturn, the craters of the moon, the atmosphere of Venus, the "red spot" of Jupiter; the Sun, with its awesome power, its storms and its flares; the shattered wreckage of the asteroids, a planet that was?; meteors falling out of the night, and the hypnotizing comets, streaking by; theories of the formation of galaxies, stars and planets; the lives of the astronomers. And so much on the technology of space, as well: rockets with their engines, and the brilliant, complex principles behind them; lunar buggies, satellites, designs for space stations and even future colonies on other planets. I grew up absorbing both the world of the real and the make-believe.
And then, writing came into my life; and naturally, the stories and pictures that flowed from my child’s hand, and later, from my young adult’s hand, contained a great deal of outer space, and dreams of outer space. I did not draw or write of "little grays", but of all kinds of exotic extraterrestrials and civilizations, and I felt warm and happy to be in this other world of the imagination, which required no spacecraft to visit, only a mind that was willing to travel, and a piece of paper and a pen to record the journey.
And, as all this happened, I continued to pay attention to what was going on in the world outside of my little creative bubble. I listened to stories of UFOs, and to put-downs of those stories. I listened to a relative of mine admit to carrying out a prank with a friend, in which they filled a large balloon-like bag with hot air, or helium, and sent it flying off into the night. According to his jubilant claims, it generated "UFO sightings", including one report of "a spacecraft with windows." But that did not stop me from looking up at the night sky whenever I was able to, or from studying the lights that sometimes appeared in the night sky, hoping that they might turn out to be UFOs, before they revealed themselves to be only airplanes or helicopters, flying past on some perfectly ordinary journey. I remember also, in those days, how fascinated I was with the Betty and Barney Hill alien abduction case. And how I began to have UFO dreams of my own, always following a similar pattern: First, I saw an object in the sky, and there was a period of not knowing what it was, until, suddenly, unmistakably, it came into full view as a UFO; then, there was a kind of ecstasy, an overwhelming excitement, like coming alive, like having my family come back for me, as I rushed out of the house, or wherever I was, after it, to some place where it could beam me up, either in a ray of light, or just by opening doors on its underside, allowing me to fly up into it. What happened after that, I do not remember: it was the act of being reunited that was the center, the high point of the dream.
And then, maturing still more, I took - among all my other activities - to writing science fiction novels. By now I was beginning to develop serious theories and ideas about "the extraterrestrials", nothing methodical or carefully-constructed, however, just bits and pieces of belief, which I fused into my stories, "hardening" my fiction with an element of reality (as it seemed to me). Since I was not a physicist, by trade, though very interested in it (two very different things!), my science tended to rely upon conventional science fiction tools and expectations (we let "Star Trek" do our science for us), while my few forays into speculative technology only ended up coming off like "magical realism" (though I would not be surprised if Garcia Marquez could, indeed, give a better description of advanced alien technology than Stephen Hawking!) As culture was my forte - sociology, anthropology, and history - it was in this realm that I most exerted my vision of the "unknown."
The publishing world was not kind to me, however. No need to grind axes now, so long after the fact. Essentially, my "hour of being a science fiction writer" came and went in utter obscurity, leaving me unpublished and unaccepted, a daydreamer without an "excuse." Other concerns called. "Time is up!" the world seemed to say. And I had no choice but to leave behind my old friends - story characters who were my dearest companions, and imaginary worlds which I had lived in - that must now be left in the past, just like childhood playmates, just like homes and neighborhoods, when one’s family moves on, dragging one behind them. During this time, as I struggled in so many ways, I developed a spiritual dimension that had, up until then, remained hidden. From UFOs, with their magical flash of light on the edge of science, I moved to more remote (yet nearer) realms of concepts and experiences. To ideas of spirits, past lives, and paranormal phenomena quite aggressively rejected by science. This spiritual homecoming, or realignment of my worldview, is described in The Journey of Rainsnow (while the earthly vision that came from it is described in The Message of Rainsnow). It seemed, I had left the UFOs behind.
And yet, it seems, the UFOs would have nothing of it! An idea occurred to me, in February 2002, to write an article about UFOs, as part of a project for the worldwide web. It would be a way of saving something from my vanquished manuscripts, of salvaging some interesting and possibly true ideas from the fiction-vehicle that had failed to carry them into the world. Like removing good parts from a ruined car, to install in another, at least I could get some use from them!
But then, as I said, the project got out of hand. I sat down to write a brief article, and it was as if some kind of inner floodgates opened, which could not be shut. Though it was not for long - for only one week, straddling the months of February and March, 2002 - the work came out in a burst of inspiration and compulsion, that would not let me be. I was consumed, burned up by it, and yet, something took no pity on me, forced the ashes to keep on writing after I was already incinerated by the effort. At the same time, unusual events began to dance around my life, as though the work were some kind of magnet for what was unexpected, yet perfectly comprehensible, under the circumstances.
What eventually emerged was a non-literary, though I hope well-written, analysis of the UFO phenomenon: an analysis, streamlined, relative to its scope - even skeletal - which was meant to cut through all the confusion, and to get to the bottom of the matter. As I wrote, I realized that my mind had been carrying questions around with it for years; and that for just as long, my mind had been working on answers, sometimes through the liberating mechanism of fiction, which protects the investigator in his infancy, by disguising him as a creator; sometimes through the secret explorations of the subconscious mind, which seeks the heart of mysteries below the distractions and obligations of one’s visible life. And now, the answers were finally beginning to come. And come.
Methodologically, I can say that this analysis is a combination of logic and intuition, of study and inspiration. It is not based on any new research, or on any "inside information", that I know of. It is, instead, based upon an assessment of existing research, as presented in books and articles about UFOs and related phenomena, some of which are "skeptical" of the extraterrestrial hypothesis, and many of which are favorable. Based upon this evidence - some of it quite convincing, and some of it less so - I have determined that something extraterrestrial in origin does, indeed, seem to be taking place here, although the skeptics are surely right in many of their objections.
But beyond this - and with the evidence we now have in our hands - I have developed a logical structure of inferences which enables us to begin to actually grasp the purpose of the extraterrestrial activity occurring on the earth, the mentality behind it, its codes of conduct, its limits and its promise - as well as to uncover the depth and directions of our government’s response to it, which has, today, become as much a part of the "UFO phenomenon" as the actions of the extraterrestrials!
How, exactly, does one go about applying logic to make sense out of a mystery so nebulous, so sparsely inhabited by concrete facts? In the same way that one might go about solving the following problem:
Find the numerical value of P:
P = [5x(2y) + 8z] - 8q.
2x = 6.
10x - 5y = 10.
7y + 8z = 30.
4z(3q) = 27.
As you can see, although the mystery seems, at first glance, unsolvable, once some facts can be attained, and inserted into the problem, the mystery begins to become accessible. And one does not need a whole lot of facts, either. In the above problem, for example, solving the numerical value of P depends upon us discovering, and then applying, the numerical values of x, y, z, and q, none of which are given to us. And yet, utilizing relationships that are known, that are available to us, we can slowly ("English majors") or very quickly ("math majors") build up the solution from what we do have, to find that P = 50.
Of course, the "UFO question" is in no way this clear-cut, nor are the "facts" which I have chosen to insert into the problem, in order to solve it, free of controversy. While I have sought to be objective and somewhat cautious in my selection of the "building blocks" utilized to construct my theory of the UFO phenomenon, some critics will doubtless consider me to be excessive and unguarded in my acceptance of certain reported facts as actual facts.
And then, there is the question of my imagination. Most certainly, it has come into play in this search for the truth, though I hope it has remained obediently within the framework of logic, which I have built up around a core of known, or likely, "UFO facts", and then extended outwards, in the manner of an ameba’s pseudopodia, seeking to ingest as much of the unknown as is possible. On the other hand, neither should imagination, although disciplined, and forced to play second fiddle to logic here, hang its head in shame. Consider the following example, inspired by more than one mystery novel: "A man was murdered in a house - an old English mansion, of course. It happened at the end of an, otherwise, uneventful day. No signs of breaking and entering. No noises heard. Quite a large man, he was suffocated by being held down with a pillow over his face, a feat that would have required great physical strength to accomplish. At home, that night, were the sixty-year-old butler, the old maid, the victim’s daughter, and the crippled, secret half-brother of the murdered man, who returned from India, last month, paralyzed from a fall during a hunting expedition. Exhaustive investigations finally prove that no one else entered the house that night, which eliminates the possibility of a stranger being let in, as an accomplice to the crime; nor could any stranger have been in hiding within the house, before the doors were locked for the evening."
Well, obviously, in a case like this, logic reaches a dead end, but for the imagination. While the investigator devoid of imagination might finally be forced to conclude that no murder had taken place after all, the investigator who does not reject the dead body found on the floor has no choice but to fantasize, within the framework of logic, if he is to find an answer; and by doing so, he quickly comes up with several possible alternatives, including: (1) The crippled half-brother may not be so crippled, after all! (2) The murder victim might have been drugged or, in other ways, intoxicated and weakened so as to become vulnerable to the attack of a person of inferior strength! In cases such as this, there surely is a place for imagination to be put to use, although it should not outrun the facts, but work among them, and within them.
And finally, we may consider the following example, illustrating another mental process, utilized in this book: I see a plain, and I see a ridge rising high above it and behind it; and in the middle of the plain, on the way to the ridge, before it but not reaching it, there is a deep depression in the earth. There is a group of well-trained, veteran soldiers, and I know they took fire at a certain point on the plain, and were suddenly confronted by an overwhelming force of enemy troops. And that is all I know. What happened next has been kept secret from me and from everyone else; no one will tell us what happened. Yet even so - out of the darkness of not knowing - I am able to fill in some of the details about the military action that followed. I know that the soldiers, if they had the opportunity, would have attempted to make it up to establish a defensive position on the commanding heights of the ridge. That if they ran into the depression, on the way there, and saw the enemy pressing them too closely to safely reach the ridge, which was still some distance away, they might have, alternatively, tried to set up a defensive position at the top of the opposite side of the depression, using the lowness of the depression to convert their position on the plain into a (relative) high-point, approximating the effects of reaching the ridge. In that case, their main concern might then have become the danger of being outflanked by the enemy, who, if he was able to hold them down with fire long enough, might send units around their new strong point to take control of the ridge behind them. - Of course, I do not "know" any of this. Yet, even so, I am able to put it all together, knowing something of the circumstances, and something of the minds that were faced with those circumstances. (I have particularly applied this form of imagination to the actions of my fellow "earthlings", whose minds are quite familiar to me.)
And this is, essentially, the approach I have taken in this book. Start with a core of "facts." Logically infer new facts, from the known ones. Use imagination, and even other senses, to help logic on its way, but not to supplant it. And avoid dogma: present multiple possibilities and variations, when called for. And openly admit that this is not "THE DEFINITIVE EXPLANATION of UFOs, and the extraterrestrial presence", but only one man’s contribution to what must be a long and difficult journey of understanding for our "human race." What I do hope to accomplish with this book, however, is to help fill in an outstanding gap between the grounded, objective, and careful works that struggle to establish the minimum before the court of skeptics - which is that UFOs are, in fact, real - and the exuberant, high-flying, ungrounded works that claim to know everything there is to know about the extraterrestrials and why they are here (often as the alleged result of "direct contact"). Hopefully, in the middle-ground which this book seeks to occupy - a middle-ground where logic matters, yet inspiration is not denied, and where certain basic UFO "starting points" are accepted, rather than re-argued for the sake of convincing those who will never be convinced - a valuable addition to our perspective on the "extraterrestrial phenomenon" will unfold.
I hope this work will be meaningful to you, and helpful to our planet, as a whole.
(Note: As it was originally written, this article-turned-book had no chapters. A series of headings have been inserted into the text to help provide reference points for its content, but these should not be considered chapters, in any formal sense.)
- J. Rainsnow, March 16, 2002.
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The Secret of the UFOs
Reaching the Truth of What They Mean to Us
Intelligent Life in the Universe
I remember a song which I heard once when I was younger, that had the lines:
"Unidentified objects in the sky:
are they fiction, or are they fact?
Where do they come from,
and will they be coming back?"
And that is as good a way as any to start this book!
UFOs and the whole question of extraterrestrial civilizations are today a huge consideration of the New Age. More than that, they are an incitation to curious minds everywhere. Carl Sagan, a respected scientist, and also one of the most ardent critics of the New Age, believed in the existence of extraterrestrial civilizations and, in fact, collaborated with scientific projects in the attempt to establish contact with these civilizations, by means of radio signals transmitted into space, as well as by means of information about the earth placed aboard the unmanned Pioneer 10 spacecraft, which has been sent beyond our solar system, towards the veil of darkness that may conceal our destiny.
Today, most scientists believe that the universe is inhabited by other "intelligent life forms." Far from being a "fringe" belief, this is now standard science. Based on theories of how planets are formed, on the properties and numbers of stars in the universe, and on the biochemical and physical conditions believed necessary for life to arise, scientists have come to the conclusion that there are bound to be millions of inhabited planets in the universe. And they conjecture that on many of these planets, the processes of evolution visible on our own world are likely, in a similar way, to have produced intelligent life forms, capable of developing impressive civilizations. Not only that - since ours is a relatively young part of the universe, judging by the age of our stars, there are likely to be civilized planets much older than ours - which, in terms of technological development, could mean vastly more advanced (consider, for example, the tremendous difference just 150 years has made in our own technological progress - the difference between the horse-and-buggy, and the automobile, jet, and spacecraft; between the candle and the electric light bulb; the filing cabinet and the computer. What wonders might a civilization even 1,000 years ahead of ours be in command of?)
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Problems in Getting Here
Mainstream science, on the other hand, tends to be skeptical about the UFO phenomenon (though opinion is certainly divided); for they see no way to connect the extraterrestrial civilizations which they have envisioned, to events taking place on our own planet. Loyal to the concept of Einstein, who theorized that the speed of light is the greatest velocity achievable in the universe - and noting the huge distances between stars - they speculate that the distance between our planet and other, inhabited ones, is too great a barrier to be crossed. (The nearest star to the earth, Alpha Centauri, is 4.3 light years away, and it doesn’t seem a likely star system for the development of life; while the distance between our sun and many other stars may be measured in terms of hundreds and thousands of light years.) To make spacecraft fast enough, and long-lasting enough, to endure such a gigantic (probably multigenerational) journey, seems, to them, impossible.
Besides this, many scientists feel that the older regions of the universe, inhabited by the so-called Population II stars, may present conditions more difficult for the development of life, and certainly of civilizations capable of space travel (due to the relative scarcity of heavy elements, including all-important metals deemed vital for technological progress). This could mean, they say, that large portions of deep space are devoid of intelligent life, or else possibly inhabited by brilliant, but stranded, races of beings who lack the resources necessary to leave their planets.
Add to this the fact that eavesdroppers on the stars - scientists tuned in to the noises of the cosmos (emissions from various sources of radiation, including quasars and neutron stars ) - have not yet detected any signs of extraterrestrial communication, such as radio waves, which might be evidence of a "nearby" civilization - one "in range" of ours. They say that makes the picture even bleaker.
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The Critical Test of Civilizations
And then, cultural pessimists come in with the final blow, to propose the theory that perhaps every intelligent species, shaped by evolutionary processes of development like us, is naturally endowed (cursed with) a certain genetic disposition towards aggressiveness: a characteristic with survival value, if it is appropriately used - but one which also becomes highly risky, once technological development reaches a certain point. For the evolution of technology is certainly faster than the biological evolution of a species. And species accustomed to a certain level of aggressive behavior, survivable with limited technology, may suddenly become dangerously endowed with awesome destructive power while still hooked into archaic, biological patterns of aggression. What happens when the rams, used to butting horns until one finally retreats, suddenly become rigged to a new technology which will translate the clashing of their horns into the destruction of a planet? These cultural theorists speculate that all civilizations must one day face a Critical Test, in which their biological heritage and technological progress will meet head-on, forcing them to rise to a new and higher level of culture, or else destroy themselves in war, and obliterate their promise forever. These theorists (perhaps observing developments on our own world), speculate that this test is likely to have been failed by a great many civilizations, greatly reducing the quantity of civilizations able to reach out to us from across the void of space.
For all of these reasons, mainstream science tends to be skeptical regarding the idea of UFOs, and the possibility of extraterrestrials actually visiting us on the earth. Yes, they are out there, they say, but they will never get any closer to us than our imagination.
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Evidence of Extraterrestrial Visitation
On the other hand, if one steps back from their theories, for a moment, and considers the question from the point of view of what we, as earthlings, are actually seeing on the earth, then things become much more interesting. Although the huge catalogue of reported UFO sightings which is on record today is undeniably spotty and erratic, containing large numbers of misidentified meteors, comets, aircraft, weather balloons, atmospheric phenomena - and outright hoaxes - there are also large numbers of well-documented sightings: sightings reported and/or photographed by trained pilots, both military and civilian; visual sightings corroborated by radar reads, or other suggestive physical evidence; sightings by "reliable witnesses", meaning members of society not only "functioning", but respectfully and sometimes pivotally imbedded into their communities and workplaces - policemen, businessmen, and professionals with demonstrated levels of competence, judgment, and trustworthiness; as well as sightings witnessed by large numbers of observers at the same time, or within close proximity of each other. Some of these sightings defy all normal parameters of explanation: lights that behave "intelligently", shadowing planes, or running from them, then breaking away suddenly at tremendous speeds, with incredible directional agility and powers of acceleration; craft with visible structures of lights, windows, and frameworks; craft with paranormal effects on electrical systems, often shutting down cars, and cutting off lights and radios as they pass by. There is enough credible evidence on record, now, to indicate that these phenomena are very real, and without any known natural, terrestrial explanation. Of course, that does not mean that there could not be a natural, terrestrial explanation for what is occurring. However, if so, it must be nearly as surprising as the visitation of our planet by beings from outer space! Certainly, these numerous, mystifying, and well-observed sightings do fit the extraterrestrial hypothesis quite well. Perhaps, rather than reject all the evidence that is appearing in our midst, because it does not fit into our 21st Century model of what is scientifically possible, we ought to accept the possibility that our 21st Century model of reality still has some catching up to do. Perhaps we should accept the possibility that Einstein was not God, only a human genius contributing to the still incomplete march of human understanding. Perhaps the light barrier can be broken, after all - or bypassed by utterly exotic means of communication between the stars, technologies based upon concepts of reality "outside the box" of our present-day thinking: technologies involving travel through other dimensions, or time, in the physical or psychic sense. Instead of writing off the "UFO phenomenon" as something that cannot be of extraterrestrial origin, because that would exceed the limits of our scientific imagination, perhaps it is time to extend our scientific imagination, and to use the UFO phenomenon as a starting point for the discovery of a new physics that would make intergalactic travel feasible.
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Government Interest in UFOs
Certainly, whatever air of public ridicule and skepticism shrouds the UFO phenomenon, the government is taking this phenomenon very seriously; and maybe that is a sign that we should be taking it very seriously, as well!
While not wishing to dive too deeply into a "conspiracy theory" at this point, there is no doubt that the US government has been seriously investigating this phenomenon, through both publicly disclosed and covert mechanisms. There is evidence of large amounts of gun-camera footage, taken from military aircraft assigned to pursue and photograph UFOs; footage that is being treated as highly secret, and has not been released. There is overwhelming evidence, also, of "suppressed cases", in which military witnesses have been ordered to silence; civilian witnesses have been dissuaded, and likely intimidated, from speaking out; and cover-up explanations and disinformation have been offered to either "close" investigations, or throw them off track. In addition, it seems quite clear to people involved, in any significant way, in "the UFO scene", that civilian groups dedicated to the study and investigation of UFOs are routinely infiltrated and monitored by government agents (the same as alternative political organizations of both the left and right). If our government, with its tremendous capacity for information-gathering, and its access to cutting-edge technology, and top-of-the-line science, is so deeply involved in the study of the UFO phenomenon, it is surely a powerful indication that something big is up.
Of course, it is possible that some cases of government "cover-up" may be the result of visible displays of classified US technology, such as spy satellites, and experimental top-secret aircraft, which civilian observers may have mistaken for UFOs. Naturally, in these cases, the government would attempt to protect its secrets by inventing some kind of alternative explanation, or withholding information from the public. Likewise, infiltration of UFO groups by the intelligence community could, in many cases, be less an effort to tap into possible new sources of information about UFOs, and to put itself in a position to inhibit or control the transmission of that information to the world at large, than an effort to "keep an eye on" unpredictable "UFO cult activity", and the political movements that could be generated by it.
But still, this explanation does not seem to explain the full interest of the US government in the phenomenon: for one, the behavior of many UFOs seems to utterly defy the capabilities of any technology we can foresee being realized on the earth, for centuries to come. In some cases, this simply rules out the possibility of classified military technology of terrestrial origin being the issue that is behind the government’s stonewalling. As one does not simply leap from stone-age technology to the jet airplane in a single instant, so one does not advance from the jet aircraft (1944-1945) to the UFO (1947*) in a matter of only a few years. (Nor, in our society, is a technological achievement likely to be so far in advance of known principles of physics, as they are being discussed at major universities, and in major scientific journals.) Besides this, many UFOs have pursued decidedly non-discreet "flight paths", over populated areas. If secrecy was an issue in the first place, say, in the case of an experimental US aircraft, why not fly it under more tightly-controlled conditions where it was less likely to create such a stir? Wouldn’t that be easier than letting lots of people see it, and then trying to invent some unsuitable story to explain it away?
(* 1947 is the year that UFOs "entered" our cultural consciousness, as a flurry of sightings, and also the Roswell Incident, occurred; however, the beginning of UFO activity can actually be traced to much earlier times.)
Most definitely, something real and something unknown is going on here. The government is keenly interested in it, and that interest, which it cannot hide, undermines its official air of skepticism, and likewise, cuts right through the mainstream attitude of ridicule that barricades the UFO observer and believer from the heart of our civilization. It makes it unavoidable for the keen observer of the UFO phenomenon - amazed, unsure, yet fortified by the knowledge that he is not alone in his interest, but, indeed, has very good company in this regard - want to know more; and want to penetrate to the bottom of the mystery.
Of course, that is easier said that done. For the truth is hard to find. There is such a vast lore surrounding the UFO phenomenon, made up of such a complicated mix of fact and fiction, reality and myth, truth and illusion, sincerity and deceit, clarity and delusion, that it is hard to know where to begin to make sense of it all. And then there is the fact that we, as human beings, can only approach it from our own terrestrial perspective, from our own emotional and intellectual nature, and capacity to imagine. Is that enough to comprehend a phenomenon which may originate from another kind of mind, another kind of sensibility all together?
Of course, the first thing that we want to know, if we are really in the midst of a meeting with alien intelligences, as seems to be the case, is not what galaxy they are from, or how their spacecraft work, but what do they want? Why are they here? What is their motivation? Their purpose? Their plan - for them and for us?
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Fear of Aliens
Of course, what is alien and what is beyond our power to control, is also, intrinsically frightening. Who could have expressed this sense of terrifying helplessness better than H.G. Wells, in the opening sentences of his science fiction classic, The War of the Worlds? "No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences far greater than man’s and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinized and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinize the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter… No one gave a thought to the older worlds of space as sources of human danger, or thought of them only to dismiss the idea of life upon them as impossible or improbable… Yet across the gulf of space, minds that are to our minds as ours are to those of the beasts that perish, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us." On October 30, 1938, when Orson Welles presented a realistically-styled radio drama based upon this novel, seeming to interrupt a broadcast of music to announce the invasion of the earth by gigantic Martian war machines which were reported to be lumbering over the landscape, annihilating local authorities and military units with deadly heat rays, he inadvertently touched off a mass panic. Many people living in the vicinity of the locations said to be under attack, fled from their homes in a desperate effort to escape, while others began to barricade themselves, and dig in, preparing to make a final stand. The "hoax" - the Halloween prank, really - showed the depth of our fear of the unknown, of power beyond our comprehension.
Of course, today, the astonishing maneuverability of reported UFOs - their otherworldly ability to accelerate, to change direction, to become visible or invisible at will, to "play" with our fastest aircraft, teasing them for a moment before leaving them behind like toys children have tired of, all create an unnerving sense of technological imbalance between our world and theirs. So does the seeming ability of the UFOs to shut off our electronics and communications systems at will: lights, radios, alarm systems, car engines… So does the power of the extraterrestrial occupants of these UFOs - as reported in numerous, if more controversial, close encounters and abduction cases - to communicate telepathically; to paralyze, levitate, or mentally control human beings; even to "shape-shift" (create illusions disguising their true form), to materialize and dematerialize, and/or pass in and out of rooms through walls, like ghosts. How much of this superiority is real, and how much of it is an embellishment and projection of our fear, is hard to say. And yet, it seems impossible to deny that there is, in all events, a vast differential in power between the forces responsible for this phenomenon, and us: earthlings of the 21st Century.
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Why the Aliens Come in Peace
All of this, of course - besides inspiring anxiety (for it is never comfortable to depend upon the mercy of others) - leads us to the conclusion that if the aliens, whoever they are, wanted to destroy us or to take over our world, they could have done so - and probably would have - long ago. Indeed, if they wanted our world, why so much semi-secrecy, why so much gaming? Why not move in right away, to either destroy us, or else impose their authority, disarm us, and reorganize us as a colony before we had a chance to destroy ourselves in some idiotic nuclear war, and damage our planet’s value to them? Even one spacecraft and one crew of extraterrestrials, with the promise of futuristic technology and miracles down the road, could probably mesmerize and stabilize our planet’s political system to the point where it could successfully "hold" our planet for them, until they were finally ready to take it for themselves. Some kind of Council of Nations to keep the peace (preserve the environmental viability of the planet) would probably be proposed; and it would surely be accepted, as our whole world "adopted" the aliens as "wise parent figures", yielding to their apparent benevolence and their signs of overwhelming power - not surrendering our sovereignty, in any formal sense, yet letting it be absorbed by their "guidance."
The facts that no clear, public, formal, and direct contact, on the level of our world leadership or the masses, has yet been made, up to this point; and that no clear act of aggression, of strategic significance, has yet been directed against us by the intelligences linked to the UFO phenomenon - strongly suggest that the intentions of our visitors are not hostile. They do not want to conquer or destroy us, like the Martians of H.G. Wells’ novel.
Furthermore, the very fact that they are here tends to give us hope that they are, by nature, peaceful. For the technology required to travel from one solar system to another must be vastly more advanced than the technology required to destroy oneself in warfare; meaning that for many generations, on their own planet, before they developed the ability to travel to us, they must have been in possession of nuclear, biological, chemical, and other technologies capable of destroying their world. They must have faced centuries of living with this potential (we have had it for only a little more than half a century, and barely survived it for that long!) The fact that they were able to survive for so long with this capacity tends to suggest that they were blessed with a sufficiently flexible or pacific biological nature, an effective-enough combination of compassion, rationality, and/or spirituality, and a gifted-enough cultural imagination, to be able to find their way through this dangerous time, and to emerge from it as a stable, and enlightened species. In other words, to pass the "Critical Test", which keeps cruel, brutal, and violent species from spreading their poison beyond their worlds, but which releases kind and brilliant beings to "touch the stars." Call it a gateway to greatness, that uses planets as "the proving ground", and turns the lanes between solar systems and between galaxies into highways of "the proven." (TV series and movies like Star Trek and Star Wars, filled with intergalactic good guys and bad guys, are most likely only projections of our own current inner state into futuristic venues.)
Of course, some might object that pure rationality might enable the "Critical Planetary Test", which I have just described, to be passed, and that a species practical, but cold-hearted, might survive to move into space, and there challenge or destroy weaker planets, and weaker species. I cannot absolutely rule out this possibility. Yet, even so, I do not think rationality, without compassion to back it up, could advance a planet to that level. For Reason that detects within itself a trace of aggressiveness and cruelty, will infer that others of its kind are similarly endowed; and will, therefore, not seek real peace, but only the right moment to destroy the others’ power. And there is no surer way to war and self-destruction, in the case of a technologically advanced civilization, than that.
Next question, of course, is - if the intelligences behind the UFOs are not here to take away our planet - why are they here? What do they want? What are they up to? Why are they so indirect, so semi-secretive? What are their goals and objectives? Of course, there are many humans, today, claiming to be "contactees" - individuals who say the extraterrestrial beings behind the UFOs have contacted them, and given them important messages to transmit to Humanity. These individuals claim to know why the extraterrestrials are here, and what they want. But, of course, the question is, are any of these contactees really genuine messengers of the extraterrestrials? And if so, how are they - the true messengers - to be separated from the ones who are merely hoaxters, opportunists, or self-deluded? Of course, leaving aside the contactees, for a moment, there are also possible conclusions which may be inferred from the patterns of UFO activity observed on our planet; for every footstep and every gesture in the house of life has a meaning, if one looks deeply enough at it.
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Aliens as Spirits, Fairies, or Angels
First of all, before proceeding to analyze the UFO phenomenon from the assumption that we are dealing with an extraterrestrial phenomenon, it would be prudent to mention a couple of other possibilities. I am assuming, now, that all real possibilities used to explain the most enigmatic of UFO reports, in which intelligent behavior and reaction to human intervention seem to be displayed, revolve around some form of intelligence, and are not just the result of "natural phenomena." But even making this assumption, beings from outer space are not the only force which could be responsible for this activity. While strict rationalists would, of course, dismiss these theories, some people, spiritually inclined, have speculated that the "UFO phenomenon" is actually the work of "earth spirits (sometimes personified as fairy folk), "angels", or other mystical intelligences. They theorize that as science crushed Humanity’s spiritual openness in modern times, spiritual beings were ostracized from our hearts and minds. Rather like Puff, the Magic Dragon, in the song by Peter Yarrow and Leonard Lipton, these spiritual beings lost their power to communicate with us, as we lost our power to believe in them. As "Puff, that mighty dragon, sadly slipped into his cave", after the boy who had loved and played with him grew up, so these mystical forces disappeared from before our eyes, as we "grew up" and locked them up in forms of disbelief known as fairy tales and mythology. Absurd to the pure "scientific mentality", the concept is not quite so foolish to the mystic, who has become aware of the fragile and subtle shifts in perception that allow one reality to open up to another - shifts which can easily be shut down by skepticism and the sharp cuts of ridicule, just the same as cold can inhibit a flower’s bud from opening, and keep it closed to the world outside. According to these theorists, the mystical forces screened out of our consciousness by the power of the modern worldview, may be attempting to make a "comeback", and to reach us in a new way, approaching us through forms consistent with the scientific model of reality: as material beings (not spirit), from alien planets (not supernatural realms), utilizing technology (not mystical/magical force), to visit us in concrete spacecraft, whose construction and propulsion systems we expect to be understandable in terms of very advanced physics (not religion). Wearing the masks created by our modern imagination, these ancient forces are said, by some, to be making a return, slipping past our skeptical guard, through the gates of our incredulity, back into the center of our consciousness. If this is so - if UFOs and extraterrestrials are really a modern form of visitation by spirits of the earth, fairy folk, and/or divine angels - then the reason they are here must be understood in spiritual terms; and it is likely that the message they are bringing to us is but an ancient one, which we already know, but are being reminded of.
Of course, some theorists view the situation in reverse. They see the ancient lore of fairies, spirits, and visiting angels, widespread throughout the earth, as the way in which ancient peoples interpreted extraterrestrials, and the UFO phenomenon. While still other theorists - the skeptics - equate the ancient fairy/angel lore and the modern UFO lore, and dismiss them both as mythology. Carl Sagan, in his New-Age-bashing book, The Demon-Haunted World, quoted Edward Gibbon as saying: "So urgent on the vulgar is the necessity of believing, that the fall of any system of mythology will most probably be succeeded by the introduction of some other mode of superstition…" (p. 127.) And, especially attacking alien abduction reports, which constitute a controversial but important facet of the UFO phenomenon, Sagan quoted Thomas E. Bullard as saying: "Abduction reports sound like rewrites of older supernatural encounter traditions, with aliens securing the functional roles of divine beings… Science may have evicted ghosts and witches from our beliefs, but it just as quickly filled the vacancy with aliens having the same functions." (p. 130.)
Without passing judgment on the very interesting perspective, previously mentioned, that the UFO phenomenon might actually be a spiritual phenomenon - possibly originating from our own earth or from a spiritual dimension which is very "near" to the earth, in terms of effective contiguity - I will continue to treat the UFO phenomenon here, in this article, as though it were extraterrestrial in origin. Which does not mean, however, that it is not also spiritual. For I do believe in a spiritual, mystical Universe; and believing this, I cannot help but believe that the extraterrestrials, who have progressed this far, are aware of it; and that their power, therefore, might not only be scientific and material in nature, but also spiritual: the power that comes from understanding spiritual laws, from breaking through illusions of separateness to discover the connectedness of all things, the energy in all things, and the presence, everywhere, of everything: spiritual laws that may become one with the laws of physics at the highest level of knowledge, where a vast "unified field theory" of the inner and outer dimensions of existence may wait to be discovered, by all who seek it long enough, and passionately enough.
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Why the Aliens are More than Observers
But let’s get back to the principal question at hand, now, which is - assuming that the UFO phenomenon is actually a product of extraterrestrial intelligence, a manifestation of the arrival of alien beings to our world - what is it, exactly, that they want? Why are they here?
As I said before, I have inferred that their purpose, here, is peaceful. That is certainly good news. But what then? Are they here to save us? To study us? To use our solar system and planet as a resupply center on some intergalactic trade route, as Hawaii and other Pacific Islands were once used as rest stops and refueling stations by American ships en route to Asia?
To begin, at first, with what we can detect and infer from what we see, and not with alleged contactee information: the UFOs do not appear to be here on a mission to save the earth in any direct or obvious way. Right now, our world is plagued by poverty and starvation; violence, and war; diseases for which we have no cure. If the extraterrestrial civilization which seems to be here had any intention to intervene directly and benevolently, without any qualifications or procedural restraints upon its intervention, it would already have come down in our midst, offering us advanced technologies to increase food production, energy production, and resource exploitation, and providing us with advanced genetic and pharmaceutical means to combat disease, as well as with less biologically stressful forms of technology (cutting down on pollution, in its many deadly forms). This civilization from the stars would, also, already have met with our top political leadership, with our mass media, and with our elite thinkers, to impart its ideas on political, economic, social, and cultural matters to our troubled world. It would, literally, have descended from the skies in true messianic fashion, to lift us out of ignorance, save us from our follies, redirect us, guide us, and bless us with great secrets from its own wise and generous heart.
However, nothing of the sort has taken place. Our extraterrestrial visitors, who mean us no harm, have, likewise, taken no bold or public step to save us - and we truly are in danger, in need of saving. Which brings us to the next question, a critical question: why not?
Some speculate that the extraterrestrials are here only as observers, and scientists. That they are not here for interacting with us or for saving us, but only for studying us, in the same way that our zoologists study chimpanzees or gorillas in the wild, observing them in their natural habitat with a minimum of interference. In this case, the extraterrestrials would be involved in a study, both biological and cultural, based upon the brief capture and examination of specimens (alien abductions); and the analysis of our technological base and state of cultural development (by means of instrument readings, direct observation, and perhaps the interrogation or "reading" of abductees, who might be able to provide the alien observers with an "inside view" of what was going on in our civilization).
According to this outlook, the extraterrestrials, here for the acquisition of knowledge, would no more intervene to help us than a terrestrial zoologist in the field would attempt to warn a baby gorilla against picking up a poisonous snake, or attempt to prevent two male gorillas from fighting over a female. Instead, the extraterrestrial observers would simply watch. "What a pity," they might say, over and over again, as we destroyed ourselves, just as Jane Goodall observed the death of her favorite chimps, writing down the details in her notebooks as tears filled her eyes. Then, it would be back to their planet, to present the report on humans.
However, there are obvious flaws in the theory that the aliens are here only for the purpose of studying us. For although we do, undeniably, seem to be the object of their study, there seems to be another dimension to our relationship, as well. This is because, for best results, a field analysis of our civilization should be conducted as discreetly as possible. The observer should see, and not be seen, to record us in our natural state; a feat which seems to be well within the technological grasp of our extraterrestrial visitors. And yet, it is clear, upon an examination of the evidence, that the extraterrestrials are not only failing to fully utilize their capabilities to mask themselves from us, but that they are, in fact, deliberately exposing themselves to us, and are involved in some form of subtle and indirect, but meaningful communication with our civilization.
The evidence pointing to this is overwhelming. Many UFO reports, for example, mention the ability of the alien spacecraft to suddenly appear, and just as suddenly, to vanish. They seem to do this through maneuver, but also, very likely, from reports, by means of some kind of masking technology, capable of rendering them invisible to radar and to the naked eye. With capabilities such as this, why so many highly visible flights above our planet - brilliant, blazing disks flashing through the night sky, daytime disks, low-level passes with blinking, multicolored lights? Indeed, our military is capable of far greater stealth than that.
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Showing off their Spacecraft
Consider the July 1952 sightings over Washington, DC, when large numbers of UFOs, sometimes flying solo, sometimes flying in formation, repeatedly showed up on radar systems and were visually sighted by both military and civilian pilots, and observers on the ground, as well. (Efforts made to explain away the sightings as temperature inversions or meteor showers are generally discounted by objective analysts.) Staging highly visible maneuvers over the capital of the earth’s most powerful nation is hardly in keeping with the idea of discretion.
Then, consider the 1983-1984 sightings in the Hudson River Valley, just north of New York City: a giant boomerang-shaped or triangular spacecraft, likened to a "flying city" - huge, slow, drifting over highways and well-populated areas (and even a nuclear power pant), announcing itself with flashing lights, sometimes darting away suddenly with astonishing agility and powers of acceleration; or else vanishing into thin air - then reappearing, later, at another point in the sky. Hundreds of people saw this craft (or these craft). Certainly, its highly visible maneuvers, just north of one of the world’s largest and most influential cities, were hardly consistent with the objective of remaining hidden from human eyes.
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Crop Circles: Making a Statement
Then, we have the phenomenon of the crop circles: sometimes gigantic and often complex patterns which appear overnight in cultivated fields, as crops are flattened, from above, by an unexplained force, creating arresting designs which are visible from the air. The phenomenon, which has been reported worldwide, is especially associated with the fields of England, and while skeptics attempt to pass all of them off as hoaxes (some are), and many mystics see them as a renewal of the fairy presence or earth spirit activity in once-sacred parts of England, UFO-enthusiasts generally view them as products of extraterrestrial intelligence. They point out that the formation of the "circles", said to take place in a matter of minutes, is sometimes linked to sightings of bright lights over the fields, which would seem to provide a strong connection with UFOs. (They also favor the extraterrestrial explanation for most manifestations of "otherworldly" phenomena.) While the exact meaning of the sometimes intricate symbols incorporated by the crop circles is not known (though efforts have been made to "decipher" them), one obvious meaning would be: "Hello! We are here! Take note! You are not alone! There is a lot to think about… better start thinking!" Of course, leaving "calling cards" like this behind could hardly be considered to be part of a strategy of contact-avoidance.
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Alien Abductions: Part of a Publicity Campaign
Then, we have the wave of alien abductions. Of course, this phenomenon is more highly debated than that of the appearance of UFOs in our skies. Most convincing when compelling episodes of "missing time" are involved (as when a one-hour drive takes five hours) - or when UFO sightings are witnessed before or after the abduction, by the abductee or by others in the vicinity - the abduction experience is usually not immediately remembered by the abductee, but recalled, only later, as memory associations are triggered; as dreams gradually process and release fragments of the experience; or as hypnosis is utilized to draw the memory out of its hiding places in the subconscious. All of this, say abduction experts, tends to suggest that the memory of the abductee is tampered with during the abduction process, and that the experiences he has undergone in the presence of the extraterrestrials, who have temporarily taken him in order to study him, are "erased" from his conscious memory - perhaps by some kind of hypnotic suggestion to forget all that he has seen and experienced aboard the alien spacecraft. That, of course, would back up the idea that the extraterrestrials do want their presence here to be kept secret; until one considers the relative ease with which this "programming to forget" seems to be able to be overcome by our modern-day knowledge of hypnosis. If the relatively simple procedure of hypnotically regressing subjects suffering from periods of "missing time", or from disturbing memory traces of something "unpleasant in the night", is sufficient to bring back full-fledged memories of alien abductions, replete with detailed views of extraterrestrial "captors", otherworldly technologies, and the interior of spacecraft - then it seems quite clear that alien efforts to suppress human memory of the abduction experience are not genuine. Surely, if secrecy were to be maintained, the same mentality which found ways of traversing the vast distance between stars, should be able to come up with a better procedure for studying earthlings. Surely a more effective mechanism for suppressing or stealing memories should be made available; perhaps a more effective manner of implanting "blocking suggestions", to either make it impossible to hypnotize the subject, once he was "free", or else to automatically "snap him out" of hypnosis if certain topics were broached. Or memories could be "laced" or "covered" with deliberately implanted false memories, to be triggered by certain lines of questioning. The false memories would then kick in, if the subject was being questioned about his abduction experience, providing an alternative explanation, and masking the real events. Of course, even better than all that, the whole operation could be carried out without the knowledge of the subject, who could simply be rendered unconscious, and studied without ever seeing his captors or their equipment.
Obviously, secrecy is not a priority in alien abductions. In fact, the alien abduction phenomenon - if it is real - seems to, in part, be staged for our benefit - to be a kind of dramatic spectacle created for an effect. For much of the technology and many of the procedures utilized by the extraterrestrials to examine human beings aboard their spacecraft - as these are described by abductees - seem surprisingly low-tech for such an advanced civilization. Surgical-type tools and probes, for example; painful and sometimes invasive medical procedures. (In fact, this is one reason why so many critics write off alien abductions as mere fantasies - so many of the elements of these abduction "memories" seem, to them, to be drawn from our 20th-21st Century expectations and experiences as human beings living on the earth, and not to tap into any really alien or novel ideas or practices. These critics say that our popular culture, infused with the creations of science fiction and an expanding lore of alien encounters, provides the raw material for the settings of these fantasies, which are really symbolic representations of "real-life" abuse scenarios, sexual desires, or issues of power.) In my own opinion, it is probable that a great many abduction stories recovered during hypnosis are fantasies, used, by the mind, to express other psychological issues; but it is also quite possible that some of them are real. If this is so - if some of them are, in fact, real - then the display of such primitive technology aboard an alien spacecraft could only imply a desire to interact with us in terms already familiar to us (such as doctor/patient, or zoologist/specimen). This would be drama, to create a particular psychological impression. And the efforts to suppress human memory - efforts so quick to unravel or be penetrated - would only be temporary measures, meant to put distance between the act and the memory of the act; designed not to hide the act, but to release it, and its drama, into our collective consciousness, some time after the abduction incident had taken place.
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Roswell: A New Hypothesis
Finally, in regard to the issue of secrecy, we can cite the incident at Roswell, and other reported "UFO crashes", as evidence that the extraterrestrials are not committed to hiding their presence on the earth. On the by now famous night of July 2, 1947, a very mysterious incident, which subsequently generated a decisive military/government response to shut down all information concerning it, occurred at Roswell, New Mexico. Something from the sky came down that night - something unexpected and very hard to explain. Today, there is compelling evidence to suggest that this incident may have actually involved the crash of one or more UFOs. [See also "Disinformation Strategy: Roswell", in Part Two.] Bizarre, unearthly wreckage, scattered across his property, was discovered by a local rancher on the following day, July 3rd. On July 6th, the rancher informed the local sheriff’s department, which then contacted the air base at Roswell. On July 7th, military officials examined the site; and on July 8th the site was sealed off, aerial reconnaissances were begun, and the rancher who had found the wreckage was taken "under the wing" of the military (the first of many witnesses to be impressed with the need to either retell his original story, or to keep quiet about it.) July 8th is also the day on which a military officer at Roswell ingenuously issued a press release stating that the wreckage of a flying saucer had been found, before that story was quickly squashed by a second story, claiming that the wreckage had only turned out to be that of a downed weather balloon. Quite a demotion for a UFO! Finally, July 8th seems to be the day when, only a couple of miles from the original debris field, the hull of an alien spacecraft was found, partially imbedded in a ridge, possibly with the dead bodies of several extraterrestrials discovered laying beside it (there are also rumors that one of the extraterrestrial crew members was taken alive).
Astonishing though all this seems, there does seem to be, as I said, compelling evidence to suggest that something not of this earth, and very probably a UFO crash, did occur at Roswell, New Mexico, on July 2, 1947, triggering a very determined cover-up effort in its wake. If this is, in fact, the case, then it is surely one more reason to believe that the extraterrestrials have no interest in hiding their presence from us; that they are, in fact, carefully creating a drama which we are meant to see.
While our expectations to encounter technical perfection and infallibility in any advanced civilization capable of traveling between stars, and even galaxies, are probably exaggerated - a projection of our own God-image upon an alien species - Roswell would, nonetheless, be a case of inexcusable "sloppiness" if our extraterrestrial visitors really were working under a strict code of secrecy. If it were their intention to veil their presence from us, it seems certain that they would take special care to use very mechanically-sound equipment operating well within the limits of its capabilities; and that every operation conducted on our planet would be backed up by a support network, including a search-and-rescue team, and a team assigned to eliminate evidence in the event of a mishap (either by debris removal, or by destruction, as when our aircraft bomb military aircraft downed behind enemy lines, that cannot be recovered, so as to prevent our technology from falling into enemy hands.) It also seems very likely that extraterrestrial equipment used over the earth might, as much as possible, incorporate terrestrial elements and components, and that mechanisms for destroying alien components during or after a crash, might be installed aboard the alien spacecraft. (Of course, these exploratory craft could be deployed from "mother ships", or secret bases on the earth.) When one considers the fact that in the days preceding the Roswell crash - in June and July 1947 - waves of single and multiple sightings of "flying saucers" or "flying discs" were reported across the US, by pilots, police officials, and civilians - it seems likely that a major extraterrestrial operation, above the earth, was underway during this time frame. The downed craft and crew members at Roswell should have had abundant support. And given the facts that the crash seems to have taken place on July 2, and that the area was not cordoned off by the US military until July 8, it seems that the extraterrestrials should have had 4-5 days to attempt to remove the evidence and to recover the bodies, in a remote and sparsely-inhabited rural zone of New Mexico. Why didn’t they? Why did they just give up on all that evidence of their advanced technology, waiting to be discovered; and on the bodies of their fallen comrades? How is it possible that their performance, in this regard, was far inferior to that of our own United States military, which has conducted many successful rescue operations behind enemy lines, under far more difficult conditions, coming back with survivors, and bodies, and/or destroying equipment in the wake of military disasters?
To my mind, there can be no doubt that the Roswell incident - if it did take place - was not an accident, after all, but a deliberate effort, by the aliens, to plant evidence of their existence upon our world. At first, that seems rather hard to believe - especially if one accepts the rumors of alien bodies - but then, that is only if we look at things from the point of view of our own first reaction. Perhaps we have stereotyped the extraterrestrial mind as being the embodiment of pure rationality - calculating, brilliant, reasonable, and non-emotional - and, in the process, forgotten the fact that rationality and emotion can go together; that they do not need to contradict each other, but may, indeed, complement and fortify one another. If our world is able to produce mothers capable of sacrificing themselves for their children; soldiers capable of "giving their lives for their country"; strangers capable of dying in the effort to save a person who they do not know - why should not the extraterrestrials be capable of making a similar sacrifice? If our world has produced kamikaze pilots and "suicide bombers" - individuals willing to destroy themselves for something they believe in - why should not some extraterrestrials be capable of giving their lives to further an important cause which they believe in? Or, on the other hand, the extraterrestrials may simply have a far greater understanding of the laws of the universe, and know the place where physics and spirituality meet, and fear vanishes, like a mask taken off at the end of a play. Perhaps the alien crew members who crashed at Roswell did not die, but merely "left their bodies behind", and as spiritual entities, went on to another phase of existence, or were even "rescued", and reincarnated into new bodies after the crash. Perhaps their bodies mean far less to them than ours do to us, and leaving them behind by a ridge in New Mexico was only a little matter to them, like leaving behind a suit of clothes.
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The Extraterrestrial Doctrine of Limited Non-Interference
All of the evidence which I have summarized in this article, till now, points to the facts that (1) The extraterrestrial presence, here, is peaceful in nature; there are not plans for conquest and domination. (2) The extraterrestrials have not come to rescue us, directly, or immediately, by means of a major intervention in our world’s affairs. Their operations, here, are guided by a certain measure of discretion and non-interference. (3) At the same time, the extraterrestrials are not hiding from us. They are very clearly making their presence known, and while they do not seem to intend to come into our midst as "wise counselors" or "Gods from space", they are engaged in a subtle form of communication with us and undoubtedly attempting to influence us, within the limits of their protocol.
All of this gives the impression that they are guided, in their approach to us, by a code of "limited non-interference." They have very likely imposed restraints upon their ability to help us. Like the zoologist trained not to alter the dynamics of the animals he is observing; like the anthropologist trained not to "contaminate" the culture he is studying, not to send its development off of its natural course, and onto another trajectory; like one nation, bound by international principles, not to interfere in the internal politics of another - the extraterrestrials, in one sense, seem to be staying on the sidelines, and leaving us to fend for ourselves. Yet, at the same time, as I said, they are letting us know they are around. Why "contaminate" or "affect" our development to that extent, while not coming down to help us overcome war, and poverty, or beat cancer and AIDS, or set up fusion reactors and give us superconductors, or even install technologies far superior to these?
This is a complicated question, and pushes us closer to the reason why the extraterrestrials are here. One reason for this approach could be spiritual in nature, something akin to the Zen philosophy that a soul truly learns and develops only through experience, only through doing something for itself. You cannot grasp a truth only by being told it, you must find it for yourself, and then you must live it. You cannot know the waters of living by watching them rush by from the shore. You must leap into them, be immersed in them, swim or drown in them. It is by living that the soul grows; and the soul that is handed everything without experiencing it, without earning it, without struggling to understand it from the inside out, will never truly own what it possesses, never truly be what it is wearing. Maybe, like a Zen master - compassionate but "hardened", by knowledge of the laws of the Universe, to hold back his compassion when it stands in the way of the student growing, and becoming truly free - the extraterrestrial watches us from the side of the road that we, alone, can travel.
Or, on the other hand, the policy of (limited) non-interference might be a protocol constructed for the simple purpose of self-preservation. If there is a fierce tiger, pacing stormily back and forth inside his cage, why open up the door? Why share powerful extraterrestrial technology with a species so evidently violent and unpredictable? Why "open up the door" to the tiger’s cage? Better to leave the dangerous beast inside the cage of his limitations, until he proves himself, transforms himself, shows himself worthy and morally capable of sharing such power. In order for the evolutionary laws which define the nature of extraterrestrial civilizations to work - the evolutionary laws which keep violent species locked on their own planets, and free the rest of space for the peaceful and the wise - it must be imperative that every species be forced to pass the "Critical Test", which proves its worthiness, without outside help. For if a civilization and a species were to be "saved from the outside", without being forced to prove the superiority of its compassion, its rationality, and its cultural adaptability to the destructive forces of its egotism, cruelty, irrationality, aggressiveness, and inflexibility, then the result would be that terrible flaws might still lurk beneath the surface of the paradise it had been given. Flaws which, armed with new dimensions of power, could unexpectedly reemerge, causing the "saved" society to revert to its old ways, to cast aside the gifts that were beyond its nature to appreciate, to extract poison from beauty, and turn against the overly-kind benefactors who had given too much, too soon, too generously, too ingenuously. Then, the savagery which is now confined to planets, might spread beyond the places where it is either superseded or consumes what cannot outgrow it, to infect the entire universe. Then, roads of eternal peace might be corrupted into paths of unimagined horror. When things are looked at in this way, the great responsibility borne by the extraterrestrials in their dealings with unproven planets, such as ours, becomes apparent. They cannot just leap in to save us, it seems, they cannot take that risk, which might end up contaminating innumerable planets and even galaxies with our violence. Instead, like guardians of a sacred place, they must protect that place for all who are worthy of it, and watch those who cannot reach it, on their own, perish outside of its gates. For this reason, they must witness us solve our own problems from within, in our own way, struggle, grow, find the light that we recognize, the light we know how to follow; and they must wait for us at a point far beyond this one, perhaps for a future event that will be a sign of completion, like the fourth day of a rite of passage; or perhaps beside another star, to greet a spacecraft from our world, a proof of our endurance and fitness to finally stand beside them.
This, of course, explains why the extraterrestrials may not be intervening directly and massively in our internal affairs. And yet, they do seem to be involved. If they are committed to a doctrine of non-interference, based upon the necessity of forcing us to prove ourselves and to make those internal adjustments which will one day turn us into reliable inhabitants of the "beyond-earth" realms, why are they simultaneously leaving their tracks all over the place, "buzzing us", visibly "crossing our path", even "bumping into us"? The answer seems to be that they are compassionate and interested in what is going on here (as they might be for any similar planet); and that they are trying to help us, within the limits which they have set; to inspire us, awaken us, or trigger something inside of us, which can help us to save ourselves. Without breaking their rules, they may be acting to save us by exerting the maximum effort permissible, within those rules.
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Von Daniken and the Ancient Astronaut Theory
How much they are doing, of course is subject to debate, and depends, to a large extent, on what elements of contemporary UFO lore one chooses to believe, or not believe. For example: if the thesis of Erich Von Daniken, and others like him, is correct, then it would seem that the extraterrestrials have actually been here for thousands of years; that their presence has been recorded, throughout human history, in our tales of gods and mythological beings; and that they have already contributed greatly to our technological and cultural development, imparting their knowledge to us directly, as "gods", or through the efforts of wise men and inventors, trained, by them, to serve as movers and shapers of our history. If this thesis is adhered to, then it would indicate a very deep level of extraterrestrial involvement, indeed, one aimed at influencing the formative processes behind the development of our civilization, perhaps in an effort to guide it towards salvation by providing it with a certain directional momentum, and by endowing it with certain reserves and legacies of cultural capacity. In this lore, anything from the pyramids of Egypt and Mexico, to the statues of Easter Island, to the designs on the plain of Nazca, to the visions of Ezekiel, to the appearance of angels and prophets, would be attributable to the intervention of the extraterrestrials, and to the work of their human protégés.
In my own mind, I do believe that the extraterrestrials have most likely been around our world for quite some time; and I do not doubt that they may have had some moments of contact with members of our species in the past, some of which may still be remembered in the forms of myth or legend. However, I also feel that much of the "ancient astronaut lore" which exists today is poorly argued, and that one of the principal components of its argumentation is the gross underestimation of human ability. "How could the ancient Egyptians have managed this? How could the ancient Sumerians have managed that? How could the Druids have done this? How could the Mayas have done that?" In essence, "Human beings are idiots, incapable of accomplishing anything difficult or worthwhile on their own. Therefore, there is no explanation for any of this except that something greater than humans, beyond humans, must be involved: the extraterrestrials!" This is hardly giving us our due, for if we are not a particularly well-behaved species, neither are we devoid of ingenuity or promise. Particularly, as a student of ancient history, I have been frequently impressed by the genius and talent of Humanity, capable of producing great works of art and momentous feats of engineering with limited tools and resources. I don’t want to needlessly give up this measure of self-respect, and belief in our promise, to needlessly accept the idea that we humans are but a dull and hollow kind, filled with nothing that is our own, only with the gifts of another species’ genius. Especially if we are not here to be rescued, but to prove ourselves! Not here to be saved, but to pull our own weight, and climb up out of the pit, by ourselves!
Of course, I am just talking about my "wishes" here. But beyond that - and beyond my willingness to believe in the capabilities of ancient humans, rather than bestowing every one of their mystery-triumphs upon advanced visitors from outer space - I have doubts about the Von Daniken hypothesis on account of some important questions regarding the efficiency of the extraterrestrial guidance we have allegedly received in the past. Why, for example, would the extraterrestrials provide ancient Egypt, and Maya Mexico and Guatemala, with the technology to build great pyramids - or even construct these pyramids themselves - while leaving intact systems of oppression, slavery, bondage, human sacrifice, and war? Why provide the ancient Sumerians with the knowledge to build ziggurats, and significant foundations of astronomy, while in no way inhibiting their proclivities towards aggression, and conquest? Why did no alien "culture-heroes" or "Gods" come at this time, to the world, with effective lessons of peace or brotherhood? Instead, religions and priesthoods of these ancient civilizations, which were said to be influenced by the extraterrestrials, supported the domination and violent defeat of other peoples. Looking at this logically, if the extraterrestrial protocol did allow for the "behind-the-scenes" manipulation and guidance of human history by means of "divine visits", "religious messiahs", and the training and preparation of cultural elites, how could such a program have gone so terribly wrong!? If Von Daniken is right, then it would seem to imply that far too much was given to the earth in terms of technology and engineering, and far too little in terms of appropriate concepts of culture and behavior. Such a mistake of emphasis - speeding up the technical progress of mankind, while allowing cultural and moral systems to stagnate in archaic patterns of aggressiveness - would seem to be ineptitude of the highest order, and scarcely what one would expect of enlightened extraterrestrial helpers.
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Another alleged phenomenon which might possibly point to a very high level of extraterrestrial involvement in the future of our world would be the phenomenon of "hybridization." There are many reported alien abduction cases in which breeding, or some other form of genetic exchanges between humans and extraterrestrials, are said to have taken place. Sometimes, humans and aliens are said to have been mated, as in the case of Antonio Villas-Boas (1957), a Brazilian farmer who seemed to have a very erotic abduction, indeed, being coupled, aboard a UFO, with a kind of exotic female "hybrid." Sometimes, less dramatically - though being brought aboard a UFO could never be considered anything but dramatic - genetic material is said to be taken by the aliens from human "captives": semen, or ova. And some abductees claim to have been told, by the aliens, that they were to be parents of new, hybrid children - and even claim, in cases, to have seen or held the hybrid children produced as a result of their former abductions. Besides this, there are occasionally reported cases, down here on the earth, of strange, not quite human, creatures walking about, often in the vicinity or wake of UFO sightings. With a slightly different-looking skin, and traces of those large and somewhat unnerving eyes common to the full-fledged extraterrestrial, there are many who think that these may be alien-human hybrids carrying out some mission on the earth.
Obviously, if hybridization is taking place, it gives us cause to ask the question, "Why?" One of the most logical answers, of course, would be "to genetically reengineer the human population." For that to take place, the surface features of the newly-created hybrids would have to be predominantly human, enabling them to be reintroduced to the earth with a minimum of disruption, resistance, or rejection. They would have to be crafted to "blend in." Some might be implanted, as embryos, in female abductees, to be born and raised as earthlings not knowing who they were, while others might be infiltrated onto the earth, as adults, through some kind of clandestine network, and operate consciously on behalf of alien objectives. Of course, while the outside of the "hybrid package" appeared human, the inside would have to contain certain genetic alterations, certain alien "improvements", particularly relating to our aggressiveness, and to other destructive elements of our make-up. If properly "crafted", the new alien genes would be both "discreet" - not easily detectable - and "dominant", meaning that whenever a hybrid mated with a human, the crucial alien genes relating to behavior necessary for our species’ survival would take precedence, and define the offspring’s personality, shutting down or overpowering the more unreliable human genes.
If such a program of hybridization were underway - beginning with interbreeding and/or genetic engineering aboard UFOs, and then magnified on the earth as more and more hybrids with dominant alien genes began to mate, in normal ways, with humans - then it might well be a sign that the aliens had given up on our chances to save ourselves, as we were now composed. Only by biologically altering us - only by genetically reengineering us - could they hope to rescue us, without endangering themselves and the rest of the universe. Hybridization could be the response of a compassionate alien species - bound by a code of limited non-interference - to the challenge of a species perceived to be doomed by a genetic heritage too primitive and violent to overcome. Rather than waiting, and hoping against hope, until the doomed species finally destroyed itself, the extraterrestrials might give up on the species in advance, so that they could begin the work of saving at least a part of that species, by merging it with another, more peaceful and time-tested one. In the process of the fusion, the human race, as we know it, would be lost; but elements of it would be preserved, linked to the "superior" genes of the extraterrestrial. "Everything that could be saved", would be saved; and all else, left behind.
But, of course, there could be alternative rationales behind the hybridization process - if it is, in fact, taking place. Rather than implementing a massive program of hybridization to attempt to save our planet, by reengineering us, the extraterrestrials could be involved in promoting a more selective and limited program of hybridization, designed to create less conspicuous observers and agents on the earth; and, perhaps, also to create a class of intermediary analysts, better able to bridge the gap between our alien visitors, and ourselves. Analysts, endowed with enough of our emotions to be able to understand us, and enough of the extraterrestrial’s nature not to be overwhelmed by us, so that they could appraise us, see us, learn about us, and transmit that learning to other extraterrestrials. Observer and observed, teacher and student, could all be combined into one organism. And the hybrid analyst, created in this way, could prove to be the key to developing new forms of understanding, new levels of commitment, and new strategies for the effective and "legal" support of our human future, from outer space.
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Then - while on the subject of extraterrestrial involvement with our earth - arises the very important subject of the "contactees." Once again, "contactee" claims, if taken at face value, suggest a very high level of extraterrestrial involvement with our affairs: something less than a UFO landing on the White House lawn, in that the aliens, themselves, are not ringing the world’s doorbell - but something quite deep, indeed.
Simply speaking, "contactees" - as the term is generally used - are humans who claim to have been contacted by extraterrestrial beings, usually for the purpose of receiving special knowledge which they are supposed to share with Humanity, or even for the purpose of carrying out a mission on the extraterrestrials’ behalf. Oftentimes, these contactees, who may claim to receive telepathic, dream or psychic messages from the aliens - or to physically encounter aliens on the earth - or to be taken aboard UFOs, where they are instructed, trained, and even flown to other worlds, on a kind of intergalactic sightseeing tour - seek to influence human behavior on the earth in a very direct way. They tell us what we should do, and how we should act, sometimes generating movements or "cults" seeking to transform the very nature of our civilization. If the extraterrestrials are limited, by their protocol, from directly intervening in a massive, up-front way in our affairs, then the contactees - if their claims are, indeed, real - would fulfill a vital intermediary role, insulating our world from the danger of being "forced" into cultural forms which were not indigenous, and therefore, not stable, yet at the same time, allowing the extraterrestrials to give important hints to us as the clock of our "survival time" began to run down. The new cultural ideas given to the contactees would provide us with a map into the future, help us to overcome certain "conceptual blocks", show us a way to survive and progress - and yet, we would still have to prove ourselves capable of recognizing the value of these ideas, and prove ourselves capable of walking along the path shown by that map. The movement to save the earth - though provided with a creative spark by the extraterrestrials, and backed up with just enough evidence of their existence to give the human contactees some credibility, but not so much as to turn the message into an act of benevolent compulsion - would, essentially, remain a human movement, led by humans, who must convince humans, to "save a human world." Although the extraterrestrial protocol of limited non-interference would be stretched to the limit, the validity of the test which Humanity must pass would not be corrupted.
On the other hand, among alleged contactees, we have no clear agreement regarding the nature of the extraterrestrials, the nature of the Universe, or the future and destiny of Humankind. Many contactees espouse utopian views involving world peace, world government, respect for the environment, and sometimes such revolutionary measures as the abolition of money: in other words, a radical program of social, political, and economic reform, which is the only thing that they say can save the earth. Some contactees see the extraterrestrials as all-powerful, benevolent god-figures; while some describe a universe divided, in warfare, between "good" aliens and "evil" aliens, and see our planet as a battleground between them. Some see hope for our world, if we unite behind the insights transmitted by the extraterrestrials, while there is still time; while others see us as a doomed species, and preach a doctrine of personal salvation, in which righteous behavior and participation in designated UFO cult activities will mark some of us for rescue, when the nuclear bombs begin to fall. And then the UFOs will fly in, like chariots from Heaven, to lift the true believers out of the flames. It is, in essence, a UFO version of the Christian Rapture. Continuing on this theme, on the diversity of contactee beliefs: some contactees treat the extraterrestrials as guiding voices, meant to move humans to act, while others believe in a direct extraterrestrial intervention: in the arrival of a great fleet of UFOs in the near future, bringing, with it, extraterrestrial leadership to take charge of the affairs of the earth; and they are preparing the way for this event, building landing sites and facilities for the coming of the "Space Gods." Then, there are those who believe in the formation of secret societies of hybrids and other contactees, something like the Free Masons, which will gradually - aided by insight and advice from the extraterrestrials - expand their power and influence on the earth until they are able to "take over the world" without us even knowing, and set it right.
The problem with drawing inferences about extraterrestrial realities and behavior on the basis of the contactees is that we cannot really be sure who is a contactee, and who is just a well-meaning, deluded individual, or a manipulative and ambitious cult leader, seeking to translate the plausibility of UFOs into a new form of political power, a new tool for persuasion and the control of others. Certainly, the wide divergence in content which is being transmitted to us through contactee "messages", leads us to the conclusion that many contactees must be very disconnected from the aliens they claim to represent; while some of their expressions of "alien wisdom" are so unaesthetic and dubious to our sensibilities, that we are inclined to doubt them from the first. Thus, although the claims of contactees are, initially, the most promising of all avenues for understanding the extraterrestrial state of mind, the extraterrestrial agenda, and the extraterrestrial "modus operandi", they end up being one of the least trustworthy means of judging our situation, and our relationship with the worlds that have come to visit us. For the contactees are a mixed lot, indeed, and it is very difficult, when dealing with them, to distinguish what is fact from what is fiction, what is alien intent from what is human intent, what is life-saving advice from what is political chicanery and manipulation. Although we, naturally, attempt to filter out what "does not seem right" to us - what seems too much like a shallow, reworked human scheme, or an extravagant piece of fantasy, or a formula for repression - by so doing, we risk "screening out" something that really might be extraterrestrial in origin; we risk rejecting what does not fit on the first try, without giving it a chance.
One important UFO researcher who seems to be quite down on the role of contactees, in our efforts to understand and possibly benefit from the UFO phenomenon, is French astrophysicist Jacques Vallee. In his ominous treatise on the subject - Messengers of Deception: UFO Contacts and Cults - he vigorously condemns many of the contactees, and the cults or movements which they have engendered, faulting them on many grounds. He finds anti-democratic and racist strands to many of them: from the organization of power within the cults, obedient to a charismatic and "divinely-chosen" leader, to the proposed goal for the earth - a society controlled by a "wise elite", possibly composed of racially superior hybrids or extraterrestrials. He also sees many cults as undermining our motivation and sense of self-reliance, by downplaying our own abilities as human beings, and making us psychologically dependent upon salvation from an exterior force.
Vallee’s objections regarding democracy may or may not be valid. Centuries ago, in ancient Greece, Plato became discouraged with democracy, which he saw at a low point, rife with egotism, disrespect, division, and political imbalance. All of this led him (or perhaps his teacher, Socrates) to dream up a new ideal of society - one based upon an enforced hierarchy directed, from the top, by a wise elite of "philosopher-kings": noble and benevolent leaders who would see to the welfare of their people, but not allow emotionally and philosophically unevolved individuals to have a hand in running the state. While Plato’s system has been admired as a "utopia constructed by the human power of Reason" by some, and denigrated as "a glorified beehive" and "dictatorial caste system" by others, it does represent one serious, if dated, counterproposal to democracy; and we cannot be sure that the extraterrestrials would not favor something of that sort, to the present system which we have, which is not functioning overly well at the moment, in terms of promoting the survival of our world. Therefore, the fact that some contactees might not be projecting a democratic vision of the future, but might, instead, be advocating a kind of Platonic solution to the government of the earth (in which contactees, hybrids, or extraterrestrials took the place of the "philosopher-kings"), cannot be taken as evidence that those contactees are not really in touch with the extraterrestrials. For this might, indeed, be an extraterrestrial "suggestion." (On the other hand, if my views are correct, the extraterrestrials will "allow" us to handle things in our own way; in which case, for those of us who value democracy, the key to insuring the survival of our "political system" will be for us to evolve spiritually and socially to the extent that our system can continue to work for us, in periods of great decision and urgency, which will require extraordinary cohesion and the ability to make voluntary sacrifices well in advance of disaster.)
Some other doubters of the contactees, it should be mentioned, question their veracity on account of the fact that none of them have, as of yet, brought forth any political, cultural, or technological idea which seems to be truly original, or undeniably futuristic. These doubters are particularly distressed by the relatively low level of knowledge which these contactees often display in the fields of astronomy and physics, and wonder why they have not been sent to earth with any innovative new forms of technology. But I believe the alien protocol which I have already discussed could explain this. Say a contactee were to bring to the earth a new technology, or theoretical basis for a technology, enabling us to vastly increase the earth’s food supply through advanced forms of genetically-engineered crops, or "photosynthesis" machines capable of utilizing sunlight and a chemical base to produce nutrients; or to vastly increase our energy supply by means of the development of superconductors and fusion power. These technical achievements would most definitely produce a cultural impact, beneficial on the one hand, and yet, potentially damaging on another. For instead of allowing scarcity and limits to remain as forces driving us to seek forms of behavior compatible with limits, we would be granted space in which to continue avoiding our evolution as a species. Abundance could, in this way, short-circuit the development of generosity; as limitlessness could thwart the attainment of humility and moral discipline. Our species could be kept fixated on the surface of things, without being compelled to penetrate to the depths of the human soul, which is where the evolution of a person and a civilization begins. Therefore, I would not dismiss, as false, those contactees who approach us empty-handed, with only vague ideas of the stars, and with no gifts beyond our wildest dreams to give to us. They might, indeed, be "false" - but the "poverty" of their arrival would not be definite proof of that.
On the whole - returning, now, to the ideas of the French UFO expert Jacques Vallee - I do find great merit in his passionate and developed critique of contactees and UFO cults; which does not mean, however, that there may not be some genuine contactees and some really constructive UFO movements in our midst, right now. Only that the panorama of contactees and cults is far too complex to decipher with precision; far too ambiguous to allow us to extract guidance which could definitely be considered extraterrestrial in origin. When dealing with contactees and the messages that they bring to us, therefore, it is probably best that we listen to what they have to say, and judge it on the basis of its content, only, and not on the basis of its alleged origin. And this is how it should be, in any case. For we are not the extraterrestrials, but human beings, and who we are and how we live must make sense to us on some level. Even if we have to reach for it, we should be able to find it within ourselves; even if we have not thought of it, we should be able to recognize it as something that was always in us.
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What the Aliens are Doing
To me - though "ancient astronaut" theories, allegations of mass hybridization projects, and varied contactee claims may provide us with evidence of a very intense level of extraterrestrial involvement in our earthly affairs - there are also many doubts and possible errors in these frameworks for understanding the UFO phenomenon. Far more compelling to me, in terms of trying to construct an accurate theory of extraterrestrial involvement with our world, are those sightings and events which do not come with built-in explanations, or explicit rationales - those which force us to ponder more, but which are also better rooted in solid evidence. It is to these that I will now turn, in an effort to make sense out of the extraterrestrial presence on our world.
As previously stated, there seems to be little doubt that the extraterrestrials, whose intentions are peaceful, are operating according to a protocol which limits their ability to intervene in our affairs, even to help us. On the other hand, they are also, clearly, involved in a very widespread operation meant to let us know they are here. The visibility of their craft, repeatedly coming out of a stealth mode of which they seem to be masters, in order to expose themselves; the phenomenon of the crop circles; UFO crashes, such as the one at Roswell; and probable incidents of contact and abduction - all attest to this pattern of interstellar "exhibitionism." Whereas some of this evidence may be denied - correctly or incorrectly - there is no doubt that enough of it remains, to prove the point. The aliens are here, and they are rubbing it in, as much as their laws of action permit them to.
And what is the point of all this? No doubt, the extraterrestrials are studying us, observing us, thinking about us. Not because we are some egocentric "center of the Universe", but because we are living beings, and they are curious, and quite probably, moved by our struggles. But, as previously stated, their visibility does, to some extent, degrade the purity of their observations, removing us slightly from our "natural state", by putting them into our consciousness: so that it seems that their presence here involves something more than simple observation.
Of course, one could argue that they might be here not to observe a civilization in its "natural state", but to study its reactions to contact with another world. It is a possibility that cannot be denied. In which case, the extraterrestrials might be here only as observers, after all.
And yet - I cannot help but think that their behavior indicates a level of involvement that goes beyond mere observation, to embody a form of communication that is meant, in some subtle way, to influence the development of our civilization. I believe this, perhaps, because of intuition; perhaps, because of meanings I begin to feel within their actions; perhaps because of concepts I have constructed about the nature of the aliens, based upon my theories of their evolution, and the nature of the inner path that could lead them here. Perhaps I am too set in the ways of the earth, where anthropologists do not design studies to observe the reactions of Amazonian Indians to fly-bys of low-flying supersonic jets, or to study how the debris of crashed helicopters is incorporated into native "mythology", and technology or jewelry. Perhaps, I feel it too disrespectful, that another civilization might treat us in the same way that a little child treats an animal, sending a remote-controlled car or flashing robot chasing after his dog or cat, for no other reason than to observe the startled reaction of his pet. That could, of course, be a human prejudice, a human limitation, an impediment to my understanding of reality. But I, personally, remain convinced that the deliberate visibility of the extraterrestrials is not part of some aloof experiment, but rather, part of a communicative process which they have undertaken. As you read on, you will be free to form your own opinion on the matter.
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Alien Communication with the Earth: Methods, Messages, and Aims
In all events, given this theory of mine - that the extraterrestrials have compromised the integrity of any truly scientific study of our world in its "natural state", and that they are, therefore, likely here for another, or additional, reason - which is to communicate with us - what, exactly, is it that they are trying to communicate? And in what "language" are they speaking? For once we screen out the uncertain pronouncements of the contactees, whose clear messages also lack reliability, how are we to extract meaning from unidentified lights in the sky, extraterrestrial flight patterns, UFO crashes, the appearance of traces or marks on the earth, electronic anomalies?
It seems to me that if one relaxes one’s mind, for a moment, and gives up the expectation of seeing an extraterrestrial step out of his flying saucer with the words "Take me to your leader", that an altogether different form of communication begins to come into focus. It is a form of communication whose words are actions, occurring in specific contexts, utilizing a language of symbol, metaphor, and archetype, to reach us in the same way that music does, or painting does, impressing something powerful upon our soul without the need of a single word. It is, in fact, a kind of communication that predates our spoken and written forms of language. It is the language of a touch, the language of a glance, the language of eyes meeting and saying everything there is to say. It is a "tongue" which is equally well understood in America, Russia, Mexico, Japan, China, and Germany. A form of communication like the haiku poem, which encodes a universe in its simplicity.
Although I believe that the UFOs have probably been visiting our earth for many centuries, it is important to note that the modern "UFO craze" - the modern advent of the "flying saucer" as a major phenomenon and social force in our world - really took off in the days just after WW II, the explosion of our two atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the continued development and testing of nuclear weapons by the US, and later, by other nations, as well. In other words, our world had just - quite dramatically - amplified its destructive capabilities, to the point where human survival was put at risk, pushing terrestrial civilization into that critical "danger zone" in which civilizations must either find a way to reel in their aggressiveness, or perish. It was at this historical juncture that the modern "UFO craze" began; that large numbers of unidentified flying objects began to show themselves, and to display their astonishing capabilities; and that the Roswell crash occurred, quite probably leaving us with the wreckage of an alien spacecraft, and even with some alien bodies to examine.
The message of the UFOs, appearing in this context, should be clear. Just the same as when a battleship cruises off the coast of a nation that is "making trouble", or a parent steps into a room where two children are having an argument, it is a way of "sending a signal." You have the atomic bomb? Well, take a look at this! Since our technology could, in no way, pose a threat to the extraterrestrials, their suddenly visible presence would not be an act of self-defense, but an attempt to protect us from ourselves. And, most likely, it would not be a prelude to an actual intervention (which is the warning usually transmitted by the appearance of a menacing battleship off shore); for if the extraterrestrials permitted themselves to intervene directly, with "full impact", into our affairs, and if they were inclined to do so, why would they not already have intervened in our affairs to ward off the start of WW II, to deter the Holocaust, to prevent the needless a-bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and after that, to do something about other disasters, such as the awful famines in Africa, or the genocide in Rwanda?
To my mind - understanding the extraterrestrials’ deliberate acts of exposure at that time as acts consistent with a protocol of limited non-interference, and not as warning signals of a possible future intervention - the message which they have been seeking to convey to us begins to take shape.
First, there is an effort to "snap us out" of our "trance of ignorance." I have sometimes seen people, on the verge of fighting, who seem completely consumed by some kind of violent inner trance state, locked into emotions which hold them prisoner, disappeared into some kind of hypnosis. Their eyes are "gone", nothing else matters, for them there are no consequences, no alternatives, they are like cobras bewitched by the music of the battle they are about to fight. In circumstances such as this, if one can manage to somehow break the spell, with words, a touch, even by moving a hand in front of the faces of one of the potential combatants (risky), one can sometimes "snap the person out of it", "bring him back", "bring him to his senses", defuse the situation. The appearance of vast numbers of UFOs above our skies in the late 1940s and in the 1950s, could be one method of trying to "break the spell", to get us thinking again.
It could also be a way of trying to humble us. Suddenly in possession of mighty bombs, able to destroy an entire city of human beings with the push of a single button - proud of our jet aircraft, later proud of our missiles, and space technology - perhaps it was time for us to be "put back into our place", to be reminded of who we really are. Possibly mesmerized by our technological abilities, by our apparent power, perhaps beginning to inhabit a false universe of our own creation, where our machines, our minds, our gigantic glowing cities enclosing us in bubbles of light, were everything - it may have been time to "cut a hole" through our illusions, to let back in a glimpse of the vast reality beyond our megalomania. The ancient Greeks called the sin of excessive pride "hubris" - and their myths are filled with those who fell, on account of it: great Prometheus, who stole divine fire from the Gods (as Adam and Eve tasted of the "forbidden fruit"); heroic Bellerephon, who rode up to the Olympic palace of the Gods on a winged horse, believing he deserved to live among them. In the Greek myths, "hubris" was a sin almost always punished by death or humiliation. Its victims were often magnificent; yet all that magnificence was undone by that one awful flaw, and in this way, heroes would end up crippled and disgraced, great beauties would end up alone, and in rags… In the case of our own potentially fatal instance of "hubris", the appearance of the UFOs could be a rather kindly way of trying to "put our feet back on the ground", to show us that we are not the greatest, most powerful force in all the Universe. (Some abduction cases could also be a way of demonstrating the limits of our power.) Cruel, in some ways, this lesson would be deeply benevolent in others, for it is only through humility that we are able to put our wishes, our desires, and our cravings in perspective; to realize that we are a part of something, not everything; and that we should behave as a part in harmony with the other parts. Truly, realizing how small we are is the first step to realizing how beautiful and great is the whole of which we are a part, and of beginning to identify with that whole, which leads us to discover a new level of preciousness within ourselves and every living thing. Humility, hard at first, is the sacred doorway into spirituality, into life, into belonging. Salvation cannot take place without it.
Put in another way, imagine that there is a man, low down on the totem pole, who wants to become the boss of a small office. How likely is it that he will poison his boss, shoot the man who takes the boss’ place, plant a bomb under the car of the next boss, kill his own wife and steal her jewelry to give to the wife of the next boss, in order to manipulate her into killing her husband, so that he can become the boss? We have all heard of "office politics", but this would probably be beyond the ken of even the dirtiest of "office players." On the other hand, put a nation or a kingdom at stake, and suddenly - unfortunately - you will find more than a few who are willing to go this far. Why the difference? Because an office is, after all, only an office - the prize is simply not great enough for the risk involved, and the moral discomfort. Well, what if someone could make us see that the nation - the world - is really not "the ultimate prize", the ultimate unit of attainment in the universe that we think it is - that it is, in fact, rather more like one little office in a giant city, in a giant country, in a giant world of offices? Perhaps it would start us to thinking, just a little - begin a subtle shift in our perception, by diminishing the prize we killed for, by making it seem less worthy of the blood we bought it with. Like a prostitute who at first thinks she is going to make $300 for an hour of sex with a wealthy executive in the setting of a luxury hotel, then suddenly finds out she is being offered $10 for sex in an alleyway with a sleazy cheapskate, we might react, begin to ask ourselves what we were doing, and why.
The appearance of the UFOs in our sky would also, undeniably, send us the message of "mercy." It would be a display of great, unearthly power, containing, implicit in it, the message that the extraterrestrials could destroy us in a moment if they wished to. And yet, by not acting, as we so often do on the earth, to exploit their power, to use it to extort something from us, or bully us, or conquer us, they would be showing us the beauty of mercy, restraint, and respect - forces which we need to incorporate in our own values if we are to survive. In this sense, the extraterrestrial would be "modeling" important behavioral attributes to us, trying to impress us with the need to use power compassionately, and fairly: for power, used in cruel and selfish ways, as we do on earth, nearly always lays the seeds of its own demise; and in the current technological condition of the world we live in, it can only be setting the stage for our complete extinction. Besides this - the fact that the extraterrestrials are so far ahead of us in terms of power, should serve to convince us that we will never be able to get what we want from them with force, and that if we are to have any kind of meaningful relationship with them in the future, we must learn to do away with violence and aggression as tools for getting what we want; and begin to internalize the behavior that will win their respect and trust. Like a man who wants to marry a refined and sensitive woman who is a pacifist, we would do well to stop picking fights on the street.
I believe that the extraterrestrials are also demonstrating compassion (though some abductees might disagree); for if they did not have it, there would be no need to suddenly escalate their visibility upon the advent of our "nuclear age" - they could just watch us destroy ourselves from their hidden vantage points. (Note: Although UFOs seem to have been around throughout history, and a great deal of activity was reported between the years of 1896-1897, there does seem to have been a quantitative escalation since our entry into the "nuclear age.") The extraterrestrials’ vivid UFO displays during this time seem to indicate an effort to affect our behavior; and so far as I can see, the main intended effect of their displays should be to inhibit our violence. If the Roswell crash really did occur, then this impression is magnified. For what greater act of compassion could there be than to give one’s life for another? And in this case, the extraterrestrials might well have sacrificed themselves in order to create an impact upon our culture, to let us know that we were not alone and that something greater than our petty quarrels waited for us, beyond our earth, if we could find a way to get our act together, and reach it. Of course, the Roswell crash could also have been a warning to us, a symbolic communication of the limits and dangers of technology. In a metaphorical way, the extraterrestrials could have been revealing the fate of the earth, the fate of a species unable to handle the technology in its hands, about to crash in the desert of its untamed desires, its unconquered fears, its ignorance, hidden underneath adornments of genius. Like the stone head of Ozymandias in the poem by Shelley, the wreck could be left to tell us of things to come, if we do not change our ways. Once we come to realize that Roswell was not an accident - as I argued earlier in this article - then the likelihood of it being a message of this sort, transmitted through the dramatic and metaphorical terms of theater - increases.
Most of all, I suppose, the visible demonstrations of the extraterrestrials in modern times might be intended to simulate our imaginations, to trigger a response deep inside us, to inspire us to solve our own problems. The idea of an advanced extraterrestrial civilization existing beyond our world - an idea transmitted to us by the powerful symbols of fabulously agile and otherworldly UFOs traversing our skies - and perhaps by the mesmerizing and suddenly-materializing imagery of the crop circles - should shock us into "thinking outside of the box", in virtually every way possible. It should reinvigorate our approach to physics; spark deep new meditations upon culture and civilization; deepen our sense of wonder, and our belief in the potential of life. As an astronaut, looking at the earth from the moon, or from the window of a spacecraft, is invited to accept a totally different view on life, so the existence of an alien civilization, beyond our earth, ought to show us that we have been living in a box, all this time, and make us wonder what lies outside that box. And it is by this act of wondering - which follows our realization that there is more than we have dreamt of and made room for in our world - that we can begin to grow, to meet and to fill new horizons that did not exist before, to find new dimensions of ourselves, liberated to come into being by a wider view of what is possible.
For instance, we must wonder who the extraterrestrials are, and how they got here. The fact that they are here should fill us with optimism, that it is possible for a technologically-gifted species not to annihilate itself. It should empower us with hope (for many of us who are not blind, are desperate and pessimistic at this point in time). It should also start us wondering just how they managed this feat. That, in turn, should trigger new thoughts about culture, politics, economics, and social dynamics, which are more likely to provide the tools for saving us than technology, since it is culture which determines the uses of technology, and points it towards life or death. The very fact that the extraterrestrials are different, exotic, not the same as us, should stimulate us to think in a broader, sometimes more exotic, way. As stimulators of our imagination, the extraterrestrials, like Muses from the stars, could provide us with the inspiration to see in new ways, to discover new resources within, to dare with new vigor, to fantasize and dream, with a new respect for the power and fruitfulness of dreaming. They could help to set us on the path to transforming our wounded, lost planet into the "other planet", the "new Jerusalem" - fixing an image of unrivaled greatness before our inner eye, to trigger the creative and visionary genius we contain inside. Hearing of wings for the first time - and discovering a dormant longing to have wings living deep within our souls - perhaps, we might then be moved enough to grow wings of our own, and to fly with them! (Consider Japan, which, during the Meiji Restoration, was stunned by the overwhelming technological image of the West - which, in that case, was presented as a threat and not just an ideal - to leave behind the feudal era, in which it lived, and launch itself, in the course of a single generation, into the heart of the modern, industrial world, as a major power. - Or consider the ghetto kid, lost and lonely in a world of coldness, concrete, drug pushers, and run-down buildings, without hope, until a positive, inspiring role model comes into his life, someone who started out the same, faced and overcame the same problems, somehow found a way to fight his way back to a more meaningful life.)
Hard though it may be for many to believe, the purpose of the extraterrestrials’ bizarre operations above, around, and on our planet, may be nothing more - and nothing less - than this. To awaken us from our sleep; to put a star of hope into our sky; an archetype of survival and real genius in our minds; to use outer events to trigger an inner journey; to initiate a subtle but powerful process within our own psyches which will inspire us to save ourselves. Unable to do this directly, due to a protocol of limited non-interference, they may be trying to push us to do it ourselves. Probably, the reason that this "limited interference" in our affairs is acceptable to them, is that it is consistent with our own history of spiritual experience, based upon our belief in Gods, and divinely-inspired moral systems, often backed by heavenly apparitions, and visitations. Without telling us what to do, or how to do it - without, in fact, inventing a religion for us - they would merely be recharging or "updating" powerful religions symbols and archetypes which were already a part of our terrestrial heritage. They would not be putting an alien heart inside of us, but trying to jump-start the flatlining human heart that we already had; trying to resurrect our own earthly powers for survival. Their interference in our affairs would, therefore, be "tolerable" from their point of view, in that it did not entail an undeserved (and dangerous) gift of life to an unproven species, but rather, sought to encourage that species to organize and utilize its own capacities in order to fight for its life.
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More about the Aliens
Some other points of interest which we may conclude about the aliens, before going on to the complex issue of our world’s response to them, follow:
Using logic, it is possible to make some informed conjectures about extraterrestrial operations on the earth. (1) It is probable that the extraterrestrials have bases in our solar system and, especially, on the earth - underground, underwater, or in remote and inaccessible regions of our planet, such as the Amazon Jungle. If space travel is difficult for them, the use of terrestrial bases would shorten their "supply lines", cut down their response time to events on the earth and eliminate the necessity of constantly undertaking huge interplanetary or intergalactic space journeys. It might also imply the existence of a "high-level" command structure in our solar system, meaning, only, a command structure vested with the authority to make critical "judgment calls" regarding how to interact with our planet. The structure would also have to be relatively self-sufficient, and able to manifest a wide variety of skills (ranging from technological to cultural). To repeat: this arrangement would be most logical if space travel were a great effort (as we imagine). If, on the other hand, reality - in its manifest state, or in its potential and accessible state - is very different than we imagine, and "space travel" is essentially an act of passing through conditions, rather than of passing through space - then the need to have a "high-level", localized command structure could be eliminated. (It also must be admitted that I am thinking along very terrestrial lines in this regard. Possibly the extraterrestrials are operating according to a system in which there is no command structure, through some kind of telepathically-coordinated understanding among highly-evolved individuals: individuals bound by an individual and collective sense of responsibility and purpose, each knowing what to do, and how to do it, what part to play, without the need of a formal hierarchy. Though I tend to think in an earthly-type-of-way about such matters, I cannot exclude the possibility that the alien mentality, and the social systems developed from it, are quite distinct from our own.)
One more point that could be mentioned in connection with the possibility of the extraterrestrials having a base, or bases, on the earth: that situation, if it were true, could, conceivably, give them a personal stake in the preservation of our planet, and therefore serve as a stimulus for impelling them to intervene more directly in our affairs. However, my own opinion is that if there are extraterrestrial bases on our planet, they will be capable of rapid evacuation in the event of a human nuclear war, and that the retreating aliens will be able to return to their own world, or to escape to other base planets, maybe even to planets in our own solar system. Either this, or they might simply weather the storm in deep, inner-earth bases, and later, even reemerge to "terraform" the post-apocalyptic earth. I feel strongly that the extraterrestrials will not need to intervene in our planet’s affairs in order to save themselves. This is especially due to the fact that if they somehow depended upon the ecological viability of our world in order to survive - if their own survival were their primary concern, here - they might already have taken bolder steps to gain control of the earth, or to somehow "pacify" our planet.
(2) It is likely that the extraterrestrials have a variety of spacecraft, ranging from mother ships, to smaller flying saucers, to probes (glowing lights sometimes seen to detach from other craft), to craft and vehicles able to mimic terrestrial ones, to reconnaissance and surveillance platforms disguised as asteroids or other natural objects.
(3) The extraterrestrials are probably studying our society (which is an important objective for them), by means of instrumentation, and "psychic" and telepathic abilities, as well as direct contact. Just as our military has "listening stations" tuned in to monitor communications taking place in other countries, so the extraterrestrials are probably eavesdropping on our own communications and media - radio and TV signals, and satellite transmissions in particular; while their own communications are most likely hidden from us, transmitted on a plane which we do not know how to tune in to (like the telepathic plane); or else disguised and encoded in natural phenomenon (such as electromagnetic radiation from space), or hidden in terrestrial formats - like "ham radio" transmissions. If any communications signals from their "unguarded" days, as youthful civilizations, are still flying around in space, the extraterrestrials are likely to have "cleaned" them up long before we developed the capacity to detect them. This would be consistent with the objective of remaining in full control of the when, where, and what of their communications with us (and other intelligent species throughout the Universe).(4) The extraterrestrials most likely do have some human agents working for them. As long as these individuals did not interact with our society as "extraterrestrial representatives", but with the aim of gathering intelligence, their "training and use" by the extraterrestrials would not constitute a "contamination-level" form of intervention. These agents, who might be pure humans, or some form of alien-human hybrid, would help to fine-tune the aliens’ study of our planet, and also provide the aliens with a potential network for influencing the earth’s behavior even more, up to the point permissible. Besides agents consciously at work for the extraterrestrials, would also be a number of "abductees", whose unconscious minds could be periodically tapped into by the aliens, to draw out valuable information regarding terrestrial society, and human psychology. - Although many alleged abductees seem wounded by fear and a sense of panic when confronting their abduction experiences, others also report a sense of bliss, privilege, and mission, and seem to have reached a kind of emotional understanding about what has taken place. Whereas the whole abduction process does seem cruel and domineering on the one hand, it is possible that the genuine abduction experience (as opposed to the fantasized one) is really a "mixed bag", which is only truly negative when improperly digested, like a spiritual experience which one has not yet fully understood, or come to terms with. (Consider the spiritual parallel with Muhammad, who was so terrified and disturbed by meeting the Archangel Gabriel, that he thought to throw himself off a cliff. But surviving the torment of having his mind expanded, he went on to become one of the great prophets of the earth.)
(5) I do not believe there are any "captured aliens" on our planet (that is one persistent rumor). Although I would not wish to reject a truth because it does not fit into my theory (a sin of the "other side"), I do feel that a policy of limited non-interference is in place (due to inferences which I have discussed); and that a "captured alien" would be going too far. Certainly, a "captured alien", turned "ally" of a terrestrial nation, would seem way out-of-bounds.
(6) In the event of an apocalyptic catastrophe on our planet, the extraterrestrials might, indeed, rescue some members of our planet (though they are sure to already have a few "specimens" among them, meaning they would probably not have to rescue anyone if their only interest was in preventing us from becoming extinct, like the dodo bird). Is it possible that compassion might draw them in, at the last minute, to save us all? Or would they only seek to grab up a few survivors, a few more "specimens" for the sake of numbers and genetic diversity? Or would they, perhaps, "zero in" on only a small group of select human beings, "tagged", "marked", telepathically "connected", or in some other way rendered "identifiable" to them? - Honestly speaking, we can have no way of knowing the answer to this question. And not knowing, it would certainly be foolish to count on the extraterrestrials in any way; or to expect any outcome for our planet that we, ourselves, did not produce for ourselves. According to my logic, the best that we could hope for would be a large-scale partial rescue, the price of which would be to be designated as a species unfit for spreading beyond our own planet, unfit to "touch the stars"; unfit for being integrated into the extraterrestrial civilization that "ruled" the main expanses of space. We would be limited to the ruins of our world; or perhaps, some survivors might be settled onto another planet, somewhere in the universe, but most likely with the stigma of being a "failed" species - guarded and watched over, like sheep in a pasture, but no longer with an infinite destiny. Although it is possible that the descendants of such a catastrophe might be given a second chance, it is my belief that in order for a newly valid "test" to be constructed, such a surviving world might probably have to have the memory of its previous disaster and rescue taken from it, so as to "clean the slate" (although some memory might remain in the form of myth, as in the Biblical Flood story).
If no large-scale or intermediate-scale rescue were attempted, there still might be an effort to save some select individuals; but, in my opinion, it is best for us not to dwell on that. For that concept would only, most likely, lead everyone to try to become one of the select, through prayer, pretense, UFO cult activity, etc., at the expense of concentrating on our collective survival. Too much emphasis on the "selective survival scenario" could breed arrogance, division, selfishness, and indifference to the plight of the many. I will never forget how, during the siege of Khartoum, General Gordon, entrusted with the defense of that city against a large and determined army of besiegers, carefully fortified the city as a whole, using rivers, moats, trenches, and "land mines" to block out the advance of the enemy army. However, he refused to fortify his own command center, within the city, making the point that he was one with everyone inside the city’s walls; that he had no extra walls, no personal walls just for himself, to protect him and save him if the other walls should fail, and if everyone else should perish. If the people who he had come to aid went down, so, too, would he. And I think this is the level of loyalty that we should have towards our earth. Let no one waste his time struggling to be the "special one" who will be saved, but struggle, instead, to make our planet one that does not need to be saved.
Still, when all is said and done, I feel that the extraterrestrials may, essentially, let nature take its course. If we are like a foolish turtle walking towards a highway - and if their efforts to prod us with a stick, to turn us in another direction fail - I do not think they will come to pick us up out of the highway. We will have chosen our path, and it will be time to look our destiny in the eyes.
(7) The extraterrestrial civilization is most likely comprised of advanced species from several worlds, worlds which have passed the "Critical Test", and earned their "stripes" as star-travelers. I believe that this is a logical assumption to make, although most reported extraterrestrials conform to a certain physical type which could be consistent with a single species. (Other types, however, have been reported, and for specific reasons, ranging from location, to "profiles of interaction", we could be being confronted by mainly one type of alien.) Of course, if we are able to pass our "Critical Test", then we, too, might one day become a part of this higher interstellar brotherhood. (Then the question might be asked - would the aliens share everything they knew with us - bring us "up to speed" - or would we be allowed to "revel" in certain realms of ignorance, so that we might not be denied the joy of making great discoveries on our own?)
(8) The extraterrestrial civilization is likely to be far more complex than we imagine. As I have already discussed, if, as I think, our Universe has a deep and powerful spiritual dimension, then the aliens are likely not only to be advanced in a biological, technological, and cultural sense, but also in a spiritual sense, and to interact, in a positive way, with spiritual realities. They are, in other words, likely to be far more than flesh-and-blood creatures with metallic spacecraft, propelled by antimatter, fusion power, or Formula X. While it would be risky to think of them as Gods, or angels, or fairies, it would probably also be inaccurate to think of them as just another form of astronaut, whose only difference from us is the size of their eyes and the speed of their spaceships.
In all events, I do not feel that the extraterrestrials are here to become our leaders, but to awaken our leadership abilities; nor are they here to become our new religion, but to rekindle, and deepen, our own fading sense of spirituality. To me, they are a living mandala - not God, not us, but a symbol of our potential meeting with God, in the most deep and sacred part of ourselves.
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