Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Bodies of water play a significant role in UFO lore. Craft are seen rising from lakes and oceans; sailors observe remarkable wheels of light rotating beneath the hulls of their boats -- the aquatic equivalent to today's accounts of "buzzed" airliners.

The mystery can be traced to the dawn of recognized human society. The Sumerian Oannes myth maintains that civilization itself was a gift from beings who hailed from underwater. Before the detrimental pop-culture impact of Erich von Daniken, champion of untenable "ancient astronaut" theories, none other than Carl Sagan speculated that the Sumerian tale might represent an actual account of a meeting with nonhuman intelligence.

Of course, Sagan had visiting extraterrestrials in mind. Given the contemporary evidence for a nonhuman intelligence on this planet, the Oannes myth might instead represent contact between two very different types of terrestrials. That the Sumerians' enigmatic neighbors were interested in passing along the very concepts that would transform humans into city-dwellers is intriguing in light of Charles Fort's famous contention that we are the property of an intelligence that elects to remain unseen. Maybe, by concentrating large numbers of humans into unprecedentedly small enclaves, the human race was being made more amenable to cryptoterrestrial surveillance.

Equally engaging is the continued interest cryptoterrestrials display in human affairs. From unsolicited health check-ups to warnings of imminent ecological cataclysm, our fellow planetary residents appear deeply concerned about our plight, both as a species and, as some cases suggest, individuals. If our alleged "visitors" originate on some distant planet, this obsessive and long-lived attempt to steer the course of our psychosocial evolution certainly challenges modern thought on what "they" might be up to.

SETI theorists, for example, have cited radio communication as plausible means by which we might be contacted by extraterrestrials. Fortunately, the prospect of interstellar travel has gained a footing among mainstream scientists, challenging prevailing dogma that, for decades, confined hypothetical ETs to their home planetary systems. Some astronomers have even hazarded ways the aliens might betray their existence, from scattered microscopic artifacts to automated construction sites in the Asteroid Belt.

Despite the inexorably warming attitude toward ET visitation, mainstream thinkers still prefer the image of aliens as stealthy, clinical observers. UFOs, with their conspicuously visible antics, shatter this model. Many debunkers attempt, fallaciously, to dismiss the phenomenon precisely because it fails to conform with expectations. If ETs are cool and detached, it doesn't make immediate sense why they would have such a severe stake in our existence: if UFOs themselves seem like chancy evidence of ET visitors, face-to-face encounters with actual occupants -- who, moreover, look not unlike us -- seem exceptionally surreal.

But if we're instead dealing with indigenous beings, it's easier to understand why "aliens" might have cause for alarm. Their intervention throughout history indicates that they need us for reasons that are seldom forthcoming.





When abductees question their captors regarding their agenda, they're usually met with cryptic blurbs. For instance, Whitley Strieber writes that he was told, simply, that his tormentors had a "right" to snatch him from his bed and extract semen. (In recent years Strieber has publicly compared the infamous "rectal probe" to an electrostimulator, a device used to induce ejaculations in livestock. While the implications are frightening, it's at least easier to understand the brevity with which he depicted his abduction in 1987's "Communion." Unfortunately, the ubiquitous "rectal probe" quickly cemented itself into our cultural fabric, fueling the conviction that Strieber's assailants were dispassionate interstellar scientists with an inordinate interest in stool specimens.)

The many cases in which humans witness "hybrid" beings with human and alien traits call for a reconciliation with ancient contact mythology. If nonhumans are responsible, in part, for maintaining (or catalyzing) the human legacy, it would appear their reasons are more selfish than altruistic. Strangely, their desire for our continued survival -- if only for the sake of our genetic material -- may have played a substantial role in helping us to avoid extinction during the Cold War, when the UFO phenomenon evolved in our skies (much to the consternation of officialdom). The wave of sightings in 1947, for example, seems calculated to appeal to the collective unconscious in ways deftly explored in Carl Jung's "Flying Saucers."





Later sighting "flaps" possessed the same sense of theater, eventually leading French astrophysicist Jacques Vallee to suggest that we were in the grips of an existential control system. Well aware of the Extraterrestrial Hypothesis' gnawing limitations, Vallee postulated a "multiverse" in which the controlling intelligence originated in a parallel reality. This did away with the need for ET visitors and helped explain the seeming absurdity of close encounters in the 1960s, when the "aliens" were regularly sighted miming the exploits of our own Apollo astronauts. It also offered a new way to address the folkloric theme of nonhuman contact that prevails in disparate cultures, from the Irish Faerie Faith to the Ant People of the Hopi.

According to Vallee and Fortean journalist John Keel, the UFO/contact phenomenon was necessarily duplicitous, adept at exploiting the witness' belief system in order to appear comprehensible. In Vallee's view, the UFO intelligence is quite real and manifests itself in order to ensure we conform to some inexplicable ideal -- but the "spacecraft," regardless of physical evidence, are ultimately illusions (albeit studiously crafted).

In contrast, the Indigenous Hypothesis put forth here argues that some UFOs are in fact real vehicles. But we're not under siege by anthropomorphic ETs or "goblins from hyperspace": the beings behind the curtain are eminently tangible. They insinuate themselves into our ontological context not to confuse us but to camouflage themselves. The UFO spectacle takes on the flavor of myth because it wants to be discounted. At the same time, knowing that their activities are bound to be seen at least occasionally, the occupants deliberately infuse their appearance with what we might expect of genuine extraterrestrial travelers.

It's a formidable disguise -- but it can be pierced.

10 comments:

W.M. Bear said...

The fact that UFOnauts are unanimously humanoid strikes me as a telling argument in favor of your cryptoterrestrial hypotesis. You've certainly convinced me that it should be taken seriously.

Anonymous said...

Very nicely said, and as compelling a case as I've heard for any hypothesis.

Anonymous said...

Nice essay, Mac - I can't recall who it was, maybe you, but someone remarked how odd it was that when 'aliens' pointed up at the sky as if to indicate from whence they had come, it was often at the brightest star in the heavens, the pesky so-and-so's ;-). Same with some of the cattle mutilations, with some of the carcasses now (appearing) to have been dropped from the sky. Part of the same situation, maybe.

Mac said...

Tim--

I think you're definitely on the right track ... or else just humoring me!

The cattle mute angle is interesting.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mac - no, not humouring you - I think it was something I was listening to recently, possibly re the Dogon, maybe regarding Betty and Barney Hill as well - if I get total or even partial recall, I'll pass it on, sorry I can't be more specific right now.

Ray Palm (Ray X) said...

Mac:

Good analysis; a well-written piece.

But while I was reading it, this question popped into my head: What does a cryptoterrestrial do all day? Does a typical CT have a routine similar to a human, i.e., sleeping, eating, working, recreating? Are we humans "work" or "recreation" or both for the CTs?

Ray

Anonymous said...

Good piece. Some random thoughts:

1. There are links between water and strange phenomena. Not just odd things like lightwheels but also Black Dogs and the like are linked with water.

2. There are numerous legends about what one might define as fairy folk living under lakes in Welsh (and old English folklore) - just think about the Lady in the Lake.

3. In the Skinwalker Ranch book they give examples of mysterious lights entering the nearby lake and also of UFOs entering the stone face of the ridge that overlooks the area.

4. An undersea civilisation (not just a submerged one) is one possible explanation for Atlantis.

5. That thought lead me to: Dinosaurs. The survival of the dinosaurs is a theme that crops up in sci-fi. It appeared in ST: Voyager but seemed more than a little silly. A more realistic interpretation was shown in Anonymous Rex a TV mini-series showing evolved dinosaurs living alongside us (also Harry Harrison's Eden Series takes another angle on it). In a palaeontology class we were shown some scientists' interpretations of what a bipedal dinosuar would have evolved into. It looked remarkably humanoid and one could imagine how one might end up looking like a grey after 65 million years. Obviously they are the spit of the reptillian aliens that get reported as well as the lizard men sightings that crop up in cryptozoology from time to time (interestingly usually to much derision in both cases - giant hairy bipeds are clearly deemed slightly more plausible). Now during the great extinctions (like the Permian and Cretaceous ones) aquatic life survived much better than land-based ones (which is why most "dinosaurs" we have today are things like crocs and gators). One might envision an amphibious bipedal dinosaur surviving and if it had it might be tempted to make its home under the sea and under the ground.

If a race lived below the waves (and had some kind of flying vehicles and even the ability to travel in the Solar System?) then they'd certainly be interested in a bit of misdirection and claim they are from the stars. If we knew they came from sub-sea caverns we'd not leave them alone until we found them.

The creature mentioned is the Dinosauroid and has been mentioned in connection with aliens before:

It is remarkable to note that the Saurian creature bears a striking resemblance to descriptions given by witnesses during a number of UFO encounters! Long, clawlike fingers, large, elongated eyes, reptilian nostrils, three-toed, clawed feet, lizard-like skin, small stature and absence of ears are all features people have reported as belonging to UFO occupants.

They'd also have vested interests in the planet's survival but, having seen the world die once, they'd also probably have strong motivations to make sure it doesn't happen again.

It would certainly go some way to addressing my concerns about how human CTs would have had the technology to appear throughout human history and maintain a more advanced, technologically superior society without us stumbling across them.

I note that some claims for underground bases suggest they are inhabited by greys and reptillians - what if they are branches of the same root species? What if they've somehow double teamed us pretending to be helpful and aggresive (respectively?) so we go along with them. I read this yesterday. Granted it is suitably off the wall but what if they pulled some kind of "Watchmen"-style stunt to scare us out of the Cold War?

What if Icke is right.. and wrong? What is the Reptillian Agenda? It seems logical that our joint survival may be on the books. Let's hope they aren't just making sure the human cattle survive ;)

I had a nose around the Reptillian Agenda site and found:

"Thomas alleges that there were over 18,000 of the short 'greys' at the Dulce Facility. He has also seen (tall) reptilian humanoids. One of us (TAL) had come face-to-face with a 6-foot tall Reptoid which had materialized in the house. The Reptoid showed interest in research maps of New Mexico and Colorado which were on the wall. The maps were full of colored push-pins and markers to indicate sites of animal mutilations, caverns, the locations of high UFO activity, repeated flight paths, abduction sites, ancient ruins, and suspected alien underground bases.

"...The security level goes up as one descends to the lower levels. Thomas had an ULTRA-7 clearance. He knew of seven sub- levels, but there may have been more. Most of the aliens are on levels 5, 6, and 7. Alien housing is on level 5. The only sign in English was one over a tube shuttle station hallway which read 'to Los Alamos.' Connections go from Dulce to (the) Page, Arizona facility, then to an underground base below Area 51 in Nevada. Tube shuttles go to and from Dulce to facilities below Taos, N.M.; Datil, N.M.; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Creed, Colorado; Sandia; then on to Carlsbad, New Mexico. There is a vast network of tube shuttle connections under the U.S. which extends into a global system of tunnels and sub-cities.


And:

Note: The reptilians DO NOT consider them-selves 'Aliens'... they claim Terra [3rd from the Sun] was their home before we humans 'arrived'.

I suppose it all goes as deep and as crazy as you can bear (and that last site has certainly made my head hurt) but perhaps it suits them to get some wild and weird theories out there as it would certainly mean accidental witnesses would never be believed.

Mac said...

Ray--

I suspect the CTs are highly specialized. Some are doubtlessly extraordinarily busy. Others might be relatively sedentary. I have the impression of a hive-type structure to their "society" (if that's the correct term).

Emp--

Have you ever read "Aliens: The Final Answer"? It's a non-Icke exploration of the "aliens as evolved dinosaurs" meme. I didn't find it exceptionally plausible, but that was probably the author's fault.

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Avi said...

Dear Mac,
Have you read 'The Pale Fox' by Griaule & Dieterlen (english translation) on the Dogon cosmology- it is totally mindblowing and relevant to the whole debate on possible ET contact!