Sunday, 16 December 2012

Apocalypse~:UFOs, Psychedelics, Aliens, and Anthropocentrism

 Carlos Diaz (photograph of a UFO)

Soon  comes the climax of the  "big date" much vaunted by the likes of Terrence McKenna, 2012, and so I thought I would review a talk he gave about UFOs, and let it inspire us to explore what apocalypse might mean regarding us expanding our senses in relation to our relationship with nature and cosmos.

 I like the word Apocalypse, not in its Judeo-Christian sense, but preferring the original Greek apokalyptein definition of to:
"uncover, disclose, reveal" 

If anything, '2012' can be understood as a springboard date of encouragement to explore reality as boldly as one's inquisitive efforts will allow. Not however being dictated how to by any authority, but respecting our own journey of dis~covery, knowing that we also change as more information is discovered, and maybe stuff you know will prove false, so it's wise to stay as flexible as possible faced as we are with this mystery of reality.

I will link the actual Terrence McKenna video at the end of this post, but for now will present its transcription, and guestion what he says, and this will also inspire more questions and how I try and approach this subject:
Terrence begins:  “…with less willingness to argue it strenuously in front of straight people, I certainly agree with you extraterrestrial intervention of some kind is possible. I’m uncomfortable with arguing it, because my fellow extraterrestrial enthusiasts are such a disgrace to intellectual discourse. I mean they’re a bunch of squirrels, you know ahhh. And also, the extraterrestrials they wish to champion, these grey-faced proctologists from other star systems to pay house calls in the middle of the night, that’s absurd. And it’s also incredibly pedestrian. It’s so like human beings. Real aliens are really alien. They don’t care about our reproductive processes or how much coal we’re mining. They don’t want to take a piece of tissue out of your belly button, or anything like that. They’re so alien, that the trick is to even establish any commonality of interest whatsoever. So there seem to be two things happening. A very subtle penetration of human consciousness and institutions by a very alien something which may have its roots in the organization of the human psyche,,,but whatever it is it’s subtle.

I have never met an alien in the flesh so to speak, as far as I can recall, and haven't met anyone face to face who have shared with me an alien abduction or experience, though I have read reports of people claiming this, and seen videos, and communicated via text etc. Could they all be hoaxers, or having psychological issues which are not 'actual reality'?

 I have a problem with the affix- 'mono'. I don't like words and things to do with mono, mono-tone, mono-culture, mono-theism, including mono-theories. Even if one report were real it would be a very radical thing.

 I have had  very powerful OBEs where I encountered beings, and it was very real, and life-changing to me, but when I have told pseudosceptics they will tend to know better than me what it is--eg, 'false'! That makes me disrespect that arrogant and ignore-ant attitude, though I can also understand how we cannot just uncritically believe anything anyone says, and how there's a dangerous history of cults where mass suicides have occurred through dodgy beliefs believed by gullible people. But there still must be respect, and if people have evidence that is good, and the important thing for me is asking questions so as to explore things even if they may seem completely strange.

My main research into the UFO phenomena is the craft,  the evidence for which is substantial. That some people claim to make contact with beings flying these strange crafts thus makes sense, especially if their demeanour is sincere and especially if they show evidence like "scoop marks" , or 'missing time', and so forth.

I also don't have a problem with aliens with two legs and two arms and a head. If planets and stars and galaxies are of mostly the same forms and patterns here as they seem to be millions of light years away, why not hominid shapes also? And why is it assumed they cannot change shape. The crafts have been reported to change shape, and perform feats which defy our scientific understanding, so why shouldn't this apply to their occupants physical forms also? Most researchers into shamanism, for example, are familiar with the term "shapeshifting", but usually associate it with an 'internal' state, but as I try and remember and point out, science does not know what consciousness or matter is and so maybe 'they' can do things we are not aware of also 'externally'?
  And the often reported big deep looking eyes some of these beings have; that to me is really 'alien' too. Eyes being the window of the soul, that description has always captured my imagination! Yet McKenna concluded, he knows what 'they' are implying only his version is authentic: "real aliens are really alien" he asserts.  One wonders whether he personally ever had an experience of 'physical' contact with one of the aliens he doesn't even consider alien? Maybe in deeper understanding of dimensions we can both experience them 'internally' and 'externally'.
Terrence: "Meanwhile, there’s something else going on, a kind of syncratic religious hysteria based on unbalanced personalities willing to put forth fantastic paranoid hallucinations that they gather other soft-headed folk to their flock, and then this becomes a source of epistemological degradation in the culture of dialogue because these people are bananas in some sense you know. And, interestingly, highly phobic of psychedelic drugs. I mean, I have made the mistake of agreeing to speak at UFO conferences, and you know it’s the most bizarre and regimented group of people. I don’t know how they manage it. First of all the faith is that metal ships from other star systems are visiting this planet to help us with the culture crisis, I mean it’s 1940s male engineering mentality in a Flash Gordon suit, and if you suggest anything about a psychic dimension to it [you get[ “oh your one of THOSE people” and it’s just completely dismissed. And you go to these UFO conferences, and you go into the exhibition hall, and at table one Commander Zero of the Planet Thermida has his plan for mankind, twelve feet away at table two Zeta Reticuli people have an entirely different message. Table three, the Paleidians …and you know…
What happened to what’s called the Principle of Parsimony? You understand what I mean? In other words…well the principle of parsimony says, the simplest explanation should always be preferred unless evidence accumulates otherwise."

 I get the feeling that McKenna may have been so repulsed by some of the reports from abductees that he felt a need to believe the people were deranged rather than dare give any credibility to the accounts of their experiences.

I personally have been through such phases regarding the Greys, and in fear latching onto a theory which denies its possible physical reality. For example Steven Greer reckoned they were genetically created biological robots made by humans in secret biological black operations so as to create a fear amongst people of aliens per se, and I was attracted to his theory for a while, and maybe that was me trying to deny the possible reality of these beings being independent, who it's said, by some, can immobilize you, and stick long pins into your terrified eye (or was that a film I saw?) as you lie helpless in their operating table.
 But as people like Dr Mack found out from his research, with people who chose not to call themselves abductees, but rather experiencers, there could be intertwined with these alien contacts a mythical and shamanistic quality.
 Dr Richard Strassman discovered in his research with volunteers into the psychological effects of DMT,  that people would also report seeing these aliens in abduction like scenarios. So it seems to me, looking at the more diverse evidence,  a bit more complex and mysterious than the mono-theories Greer and others might be trying to spin, for whatever reason.

McKenna also seems to have a resistance to aliens  flying about in 'metallic' UFOs, and having an independent intelligence of their own, and  caring for Earth, and coming to our aid, yet this very possibility plays a crucial central role in Robert Hasting's research - About UFOs and Nuclear Weapons - where he has amounted substantial evidence that UFOs have actually intervened into the Military Industrial Complex 's nuclear war bases,  showing their extraterrestrial presence and even interfering with the weapon facilities as a form of protest of our use of nuclear power. In fact it is known that the proliferation of UFOs appearing in the modern era since the 1940s happened to coincide with the United States, and other countries, creation and use of nuclear weaponry!
Terrence: "This sort of leans onto a minor obsession of mine which is, it has to do with this, this raises the issue of the whole question of the paranormal, and psychedelic people are of many minds about the paranormal. Some psychedelic people feel no need to entertain its existence at all. Others are constantly consulting pendulums, you know, so forth and so on.
In the matter of anomalies, I’ve found a nearly foolproof way to get to the bottom of any given paranormal claim, but people don’t like my method very well. It has to do with concentrating on the personality of the witness.
 We are incredibly naïve about the phenomenon of witnessing. So, say errr this afternoon I go on a hike by myself up into the sandstone and then I come back wild-eyed at evening and say that I saw a ship of some kind and then I tell you a story. I daresay, probably you would believe in some sense this story, but why should you? And in fact, how much do you know about me and my need for self-esteem, my history of lying, my history of having strange things happen to me. The fact that I was molested by an uncle at age eleven, wasn’t everybody? This kind of  thing in other words. And err, so constantly people are telling me about, or reporting in the media, stories—a flying saucer was seen over village so and so last night, reported by several residents, but it’s these, this kind or reportage assumes that people are like cameras, but people are not like cameras. People are a nexi (?) of psychological complexes, fears, self-doubt, delusion, illusion, religious upbringing and so forth, and so on. And, I guess because I’m in a kind of position where I can meet anybody in those places where I might care to, it’s like you get to go behind the scenes, like going backstage at a rock and roll concert you know. Well then what you discover is, all of these people are errr incredibly grotesque and complicated, and conflicted and bizarre, and err, you know, to think of them as Joe Ordinary cheerily explaining the aerial phenomena, it’s not how it is. These are people who were earlier into Wicca, and then spent some time in a Tantric ashram in Zugzikerstan, and later had an affair with the ambassador’s daughter, they were running heroin from Nigeria, and he had to do a little time in Jabuti, and you just realize, you know, these people are so complicated, that any story told definitely serves many many agendas, and you know you specifically mentioned Whitley Streiber. He is a very very very peculiar person, you have to spend no more than three minutes with him to realize that this is, that the issue is the person telling the story, and I found that with cropcircles and with lots and lots of things. You know, drag in the witnesses, and don’t ask them what they saw, ask them what kind of childhood they had, what there religious upbringing was, and how errr you know, what they think about Atlantis and stuff like that, and it begins to unfold in a different way.

Psychedelic experience and the journey of inquiry they have inspired in me, including my own extraordinary experiences, have thankfully not caused me such narrowing of mind that I hear from this guy.  Though surprisingly Terrence McKenna also has a very creative inquisitive mind, here it seems to fail him. The way he talks about people who claim to have had these experiences, not feeling able to trust and respect their testimony, and so on, is as bad if not worst, considering, than I have heard from regular hard-nosed pseudosceptics!

One would think that for someone who had openly bragged about his "heroic doses"  of magic mushrooms and reality-shattering DMT trips that such experience would inspire openmindedness and empathy for unconventional people telling wild tales.

Take a look at this video of a possible abduction of a family and see what you think? They don't seem "bananas" to me.

 UFO: The High Bentham Incident

According to McKenna's worldview, and perspective, it is wonder how these people he lambasts manage to negotiate crossing the road, being such a jumble of neuroses he claims them all to be. He doesn't seem to have any trust in human perception and judgment. Like any bio-shrink, or debunking psychologist type, if you shared some of your visions with him he wouldn't really listen with respect, he would be looking at you already having pre-judged you as 'mentally ill'. THAT is not good investigation, that is prejudice.

Terrence: "We’re very naïve about narrative, and we’re very naïve about reporting the world to each other. We don’t understand that if you apply consciousness to any single thing it gives way to a spaghetti of ambiguity that down at the quantum mechanical level everything turns into everything else. Well, so, simple stories , simple thoughts about them, are usually so low definition that the meat of it, the meaning is somehow betrayed."

McKenna himself couldn't get to any real meaning, because his consciousness has already reached a conclusion---'they're NUTS ewwww get me outta here!' He had already concluded what was "really alien". It is what he is familiar with, so fuck anyone elses's experience--they're nut jobs. They are not fit to listen to as one human being to another, and to really listen would degrade his 'superior intellectual sensitivities'.

Terrence: The aliens of psilocybin are much more alien, you know. I mean they're not hominids. They’re not interested in how many atomic power plants we use, or how we excrete or reproduce. They’re really alien, and the trick, the trick is to know when your looking at it. I mean, that’s always the trick. I have often in my mind the image of the world’s largest radio telescope [which is] in Puerto Rico, and it’s used to search for extraterrestrial radio signals, and it’s so big, this massive metal structure, that it’s hung in a round valley on these towers so that it can be manipulates, and its’ hung in this valley that they scooped out with bulldozers, and made a perfect bowl, and then they planted grass with a telescope in this bowl, and they put cattle on the grass to keep it short. So here’s the world’s largest radio telescope staring out at NG33264 with a six billion channel analyzer searching the noise that drifts between the stars for some clue to extraterrestrial intelligence. Meanwhile, two hundred feet below the telescope in the dung of the cattle perfect specimens of stropharia cubensis are proliferating furiously, being gathered by the local …tourists who talk to extraterrestrials back in their motel room. So, you know, it’s errr a strange game [audience laughter].” [see video below]

McKenna conceptually performs here the old patriarchal 'trick' of dividing the 'internal' from the 'external', and pays more homage to the internal experience which he feels is the psychedelic experience. This is a patriarchal mode of operation that goes way back, and this pattern emerges in all its belief systems and institutions.
 They divide reality into separate categories and have one category more superior than the other, so examples are: male & female, spirit & nature/matter, light & darkness, mind & body, life & death, etc and all the former categories in the list are thought to be superior and their latter oppo~sites, inferior, and often they will disappear one category altogether so, for example, Physicalists will try and explain away even mind/consciousness and argue 'only 'matter' exists"'. Of course this unfounded 'scientific' assertion creates all kinds of problems for understanding reality.

So I spot McKenna doing the similar here in his talk separating 'psychedelic reality' from ''nuts and bolts' reality'. He looks down his bohemian-intellectualized nose at people and their reports of actual UFO and alien observation and contact, but bigs-up his own,  and others, 'inner' experiences of DMT-inspired UFOs and 'aliens'. Terrence simply cannot expand his inquiry to respect both views, and so condemns those who explore the opposite 'external' category.
I keep putting commas round term s like 'internal' and 'external' because I suspect this cultural conditioning  of separating dynamic wholes goes deep and acts as a great barrier for understanding UFO phenomena, and the paranormal in general.

I personally am investigating a mysterious interelationship between internal and external. How can it be anything else? That is a question, and not an assertion.  We are both subjective and objective beings, you cannot have one without the other. It is impossible to be wholly 'objective' or wholly 'subjective'. Though we can use those terms and it can conceptually make us think by doing so they are independent, in reality reality is dynamically interrelated wholes.

I recently gathered, after reading an article about the beginnings of a so-called scientific investigation into the UFO phenomena, which began in 1966,  that all scientific inquiry into UFO reports and alien contact was stopped in the United States --where President Nixon's world-wide so-called 'war on drugs' was instigated-- in 1970 because the report's conclusions stated the investigation 'has no value' in continuing research. It dawned on me that at roundabout this same date the same had happened to psychedelic research which also was officially claimed to have no value. So here we have two extraordinarily important fields of inquiry which, simplistically for now, can be called extrarordinary 'internal inquiry' and extraordinary 'external inquiry' officially squashed at the same time?

It is therefore very fruitful to know and remember this:

 science doesn't know what matter or consciousness is, and,
 we don't even know how we perceive reality. 

So straight away we explore from a certain position of 'I know that I don't know'. And we have to add that this does not even mean we will ever fully know what reality 'is', and would  'fully know everything' even make sense?
  For if we keep in mind dynamic wholes, which defy and confound the conceptualizing analytical  rational gaze, with known must always be unknown, and so there will always be mystery, because there's no such thing as 'all completely known'. But we can go deeper, because reality is depthless.

In the video transcript above where McKenna, like UFO researchers such as Jacques Vallee and others of that ilk, try and argue all UFO phenomena as being part of the human 'collective unconscious' and psychogenic (though Vallee also includes 'black ops'--secret man made advanced technology, and psyop techniques such as abductions and so on similar to Greer), sharing  this Jungian way of thinking about the subject of UFOs and aliens is one of the main pioneers of psychedelic psychotherapy in the west, and  founder of Transpersonal Psychcology, Stanslav Grof:

 “As a result of my personal observations and study of UFO literature, I realized very quickly that the attitude of mainstream scientists toward this phenomenon was simplistic and inadequate. Like experienced UFO researchers such as Jacques Vallee and Alan Hynek, I came to the conclusion that we are dealing with observations that represent true “anomalies”  and seriously challenge our established concepts of reality.
I became convinced that the two alternative explanations offered by materialistic science---hallucinations of psychotic individuals and misperceptions and misinterpretation of some natural human-made objects---were painfully inadequate efforts to capture the nature of these enigmatic experiences. I also felt that it was very unlikely that we were dealing with actual visits of physical extraterrestrial beings. We have enough information about the planets of our solar system from unmanned probes to know that they are unlikely habitats for such visitors. And the next possible point of origin of such interstellar journeys would be Proxima Centauri, separated from us by 4.2 light years. Spacecraft from such destination would have to travel at a speed approaching or exceeding the velocity of light or use interdimensional travel through hyperspace,
I concluded that the UFO experiences were phenomena sui generic ["of its own kind/genus" or "unique in its characteristics"], anomalous  events that represented a radical challenge to mainstream scientific paradigms and required a radically different explanation. I read with great interest C.G.Jung’s book Flying Saucers: A Modern Moth of Things Seen in the Skies (Jung 1964). In it Jung reviewed accounts of UFO-like visions reported throughout human history and suggested that these experiences were manifestations that had their origin in the imaginal world of the collective unconscious. According to him, they were thus neither hallucinations nor perceptions of material reality, but belonged to the twilight zone between consciousness and the world of matter. Jung thus relegated the UFO phenomena into the realm of consciousness research and transpersonal psychology. I found his argument very convincing and saw it as a justification of my own interest in this area.” [quoted from his book, When the Impossible Happens: Adventures in Non-Ordinary Reality, (published 2006)] [Emphasis mine]

So as we see, Grof's psychogenic theory of UFOs and their occupants of having no 'actual autonomous' reality except as projected from the human collective unconscious  mainly originates from Carl Jung, and his book Flying Saucers : A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies, first English publishing in 1959

McKenna also says elswhere "The collective overmind of our species is the source of the UFO"

 and , "The UFO is a reflection of a future event that promises humanity's eventual mastery over time, space and matter."

But a recent article I found, about Jung, completely debunks that mono-viewpoint which yet again surreptitiously placed the human ---the ones with the science---at the centre of the universe.

According to the author of this article, the information your about to read was suppressed till the late 1980s:

Dr Carl Jung and the UFOs: The Real Story! -  UFO Evidence

In July last year, I received an email from Mr Chuck Schultz of Colorado [...] asking for information regarding the great Carl Jung's true opinion's about UFOs.

This happened to be a very important question on which I had done a lot of work in the years past, and which, as I knew, had involved one of the most disgraceful examples of denial and "cover up" that I had ever encountered.

I was able to answer Chuck Schultz's questions but it has struck me forcibly that this entire phase of UFO research history, involving Dr Jung, must be totally unknown to our younger readers of today!

So I publish below an account,  as succinct as I can make it, describing Jung's years of study of "our subject", the conclusions to which he finally came before he died in 1961, and the highly successful "cover story" maintained ever after to prevent the world from knowing what those conclusions were! [G.C]

As we know, when the "Flying Saucer Phenomenon"  erupted into human consciousness in 1947 and the years immediately following, the powerful folk of our world - politicians, military, scientists, doctors, priests of religion - all had their particular reasons for being deeply worried...and of course quite especially perturbed were those who called themselves "psychologists", "psychiatrists", and "anthropologists"...:

1. Dr Carl Jung Himself on Unidentified Flying Objects [Reprint from FSR Volume. 1.] (May/June 1955)

 In the course of years, I have  gathered together a considerable mass of observations, included in which are reports from two eyewitnesses known to me personally (I have never seen anything). I have also read on the question. However, I can only say for certain: these things are not a mere rumour: something has been seen.

 A purely psychological explanation is ruled out by the fact that a large number of observations indicate a natural phenomenon, even a physical one (explainable in part as reflections or temperature inversions).

The American Air Force (despite is contradictory statements), as well as the Canadian, consider the observations to be real and have set up special Bureaux to compile reports. However, the "disks" (that is the objects themselves) do not behave in accordance with physical laws, but as though without weight, and they show signs of intelligence guidance, by quasi human pilots, for their accelerations are such that no normal human could survive. [read more]

Our sense of reality, and being, has been and continues to be manipulated by control-freaks who withhold information about contact with UFOs and their occupants, and the possible understanding and access of advanced technology which could radically transform all our lives and help heal planet Earth from the centuries of abuse, and also wages a war against our natural freedom to ingest psychedelics, and explore their physical and spiritual healing benefits which includes healing the rift many people, brought up in traditional religious cultures, and mechanistic cultures, feel between themselves, and the human community, other species, nature and cosmos

It is true there is a so-called resurgence of psychedelic psycho therapeutic studies, but it is all laden down with bureaucracy and is in danger of becoming 'medicalized'--please see this great article: Psychiatric Power and Taboo in Modern Psychedelia.

 In a talk by a psychotherapist who is part of a psychedelic study, he showed images of magic mushrooms growing freely in fields and hills on a big screen, and then told the audience that in a street in New York City there is building containing an eight hundred solid steel safe within  which are are safely locked away capsules of psilocybin, strictly intended for the medical authorities carrying out the psychedelic studies, and the safe is weighed every day! 

 People in the UFO community talk about the need for "Disclosure" [dis ‘klo zhor] the act or process of revealing or uncovering; making known; freeing from secrecy or ignorance”]. This means those in power at last telling the people the truth, that there has been definite human contact with 'UFO' craft and extraterrestrial beings. And it is true more countries now are slowly allowing important information about UFO events to be declassified, yet the USA still refuses to follow suit and sits on it stubbonrly, but it is very important that we all see this information.

 What we already do know is adequate enough, for now, and more unfolds, to let us know certainly that there are actual UFOs and other intelligences on Earth and from the Universe which  radically challenges the anthropocentric worldview that only human intelligence exists in the universe and is 'top of the tree', so to speak.

 This situation is strongly reminiscent of the Copernican/Galileo revolution from the past where the Christian worldview was threatened because it was dis~covered that Earth was not centre of the universe as the religious worldview had told us. The Christian authorities were so determined that was not true, and how 'the people' must not be told the shattering (for them) information that they refused to look through Galileo's telescope to confirm the actual reality, and put him under house arrest, and didn't release the information for nearly two hundred years!

 Giordano Bruno

As for the even more radical Giordano Bruno, who was way before his time,  who claimed the universe was infinite and contained many planets with other beings, he was burned alive by the Christian dogmatists in 1600!

 In those days the oppressive system was State+Church and these days it is State+Scientism.
 Scientism insists that all reality is material, and human consciousness is a fluke which came about by chance via the Darwinian process of evolution.

In this weird scenario we find ourselves born into, and stretching out into his-story,  yes there is an organization called SETI ,which is abbreviation for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (UFO researcher Stanton Friedman names it 'Silly Effort To Investigate') willingly prepared and using enormously expensive technology to listen for alien life in the universe sending radio waves, so as to scientifically prove there is "life out there", yet the SETI people adamantly refuse to take seriously that life out there, most likely vastly more advanced than our current understanding of science, has been and continues to visit the life here, despite all the vast amount of evidence existing that this is actually happening.
 This scenario surely is a comedy of errors, and many of us as 'outsiders' are beginning to really explore what's going on.

Here is the Terrence McKenna video: