On May 5, 2020: important update on the recognition by the Pentagon
(Permalink) First of all, I think it would be healthy to get back to a simple and clear definition of the UFO: as the name tells, it is an unidentified flying object, that is to say an object which flies and that we do not known what it is. (Strictly speaking, this must also include some space objects, and even submarine objects, of which we have some examples).
The only problem with this definition, is that it depends on the observer: plenty of people relate the vision of objects that they were unable to recognize, but that an investigator can easily identify: balloon, satellite, aircraft, meteorite, distant light, various astronomical or meteorological objects. The witness (or the public) then considers the object as an UFO, until it is identified. Therefore, we must keep the «UFO» appellation for objects which resisted any identification. But this implies that the observation is submitted to an inquiry by people who are competent enough to identify all the known objects, and sometimes to detect fairly elaborate scams (for example only the professional photo analysis by the GEPAN were able to demonstrate that the Ummo affair was a scam, note 30). Only when this process fails to identify any familiar object, we can actually consider the observation as «unidentified», that is an UFO. It is then an «UFO case», which is associated with an «investigation report» collecting the identities of the witnesses (anonymized if they request so), descriptions, photos, etc. more the evidences and verifications (for instance, the ephemeris of Venus showing that it was not in the place where a camera filmed a point of light in the sky). Reports of unidentified cases are the only entities on which we can reason, make scientific studies or develop theories. In contrast, photos of indistinguishable lights in the media or on youtube are of no interest, since it is totally unclear how these images were obtained, and even who took them.
For example, the media overused for years the famous photo of the «Belgian triangle», before «revealing» that it was fake... what ufologists knew from the beginning. It is clear that such publications are just for selling lie.
At a pinch, the media advertise only the cases which will be proved false after enquiry, in a way to suggest without saying it openly that all the cases are finally identified. Especially Yahoo! cannot stay a week without publishing false cases to denigrate ufologists. Other common manipulations are lies, like wikipedia quoting Jacques Bergier as an ufologist. The harsh anti-UFO bias of wikipedia comes from its damned soul the guerrilla skepticism on wikipedia (archive) which spends its precious human life time at defacing UFO pages and parapsychology pages.
The identification of a rare and elusive UFO phenomenon is not always easy, especially many years after, when the archives and documents have disappeared. For example the Roswell object has been identified by three inquiries and declassified documents as being a secret Project Mogul balloon, a fact which could not be verified at the time, since the Project Mogul was secret. For the Mantell case, a US Navy Skyhook balloon was also proposed many years after, but there is no trace of its launch (despite the US navy was legally forced to disclose it, for the legal inquiry). Add to this that the skyhook balloons were not metallized but transparent, and they took their spherical shape only at a very high altitude (30000m against 6000 in the Mantell case). Therefore, this hypothesis remains a totally arbitrary allegation. Which leads us to many other fanciful «identifications» made without investigation, in order to discourage the investigations or to intimidate the witnesses. For instance the scandium fires in the Hessdalen lights do not make sense scientifically. Or the Sweden «ghost rockets» from 1946, «explained» «by the CIA» as the U2 aircraft... which was designed in 1965!
We could summarise this by saying that the word «UFO» is not a substantive, but that on the contrary it marks a lack of knowledge. To the contrary of the word «spaceship», with evokes at least a precise purpose. We even not know if all UFOs are the same phenomenon. Then the word «UFO» points toward something we must try to comprehend, see which challenges the known explanations.
Thus the study of UFOs is only about, by definition, what remains unexplained despite all the attempts and verifications. Of course such a study must make sure that this is really the case, hence the importance of the investigations. But, apart from this, explained cases have no interest for the ufologist, they must even not be included in their data. Generally, serious ufologists affect each case with a «credibility indice», reflecting the greater or lesser possibility of error or lie.
At a pinch, the so-called «scientific analysis» which claim that «80% of the UFO cases are explained by misunderstandings» are mind control tricks (according to the current confusion 80% = majority = all). Indeed, these 80% are precisely not UFOs, making of the above statement a lie. These 80% must not appear in the statistics or studies on real UFOs. They can be included in data bases only to prevent other researchers to uselessly repeat the same surveys.
And if psychologists or physiologists of perception want to study how the vision of benign objects can be understood as extraordinary objects, they must pass the same honesty criteria as the UFO researchers: to base their study on the cases where it is clearly demonstrated that they were an error of perception. Otherwise they quickly end up sending innocent people to the gulag...
We must also consider an «indice of strangeness»: a case is of interest only of it shows something really out of the ordinary. For example the sparkling light sighted by the crew of Apollo 11, for unexpected it was in this place, does not have a high index of strangeness: its behaviour and its position match what would be expected from one of the elements of the rocket, ejected two days before. This is true of many dots and lights seen in the sky: even if there is no elements to explain them, they do not really show the existence of any mysterious phenomenon. On the other hand, detailed testimonies of unknown objects, and even of «characters», have a high index of strangeness, because they cannot be explained by common phenomena. It is these cases that are the most interesting, especially if in addition they also have a high credibility index (witnesses, photos, etc.)
Therefore we must reserve the term «UFO» to cases that have an high enough index of strangeness, in any case above the trivial.
Another common error is to use the name «UFO» as a synonym for «flying saucer», or even «alien spaceship». This is however regularly done in anti-extraterrestrial racist movies and comics (e.g. Grendizer, where the word «UFO» always designates a vessel of the bad guys). In the current state of knowledge, we cannot make the equation «UFO» equals «alien ship». We have indeed not definitive evidence, and other assumptions are still open, perhaps still more fascinating, such as the psychical assumption that we shall see in chapter VII-3. And if actually UFOs prove to really be alien vessels, then they would no more be «unidentified», we would no more call them UFOs, but starships, ok?
So long as we are on it, we shall see that UFOs were the stake of numerous mind control acts, either for the purpose of fooling the citizens (debunking, racist anti-extraterrestrial movies), of for exploiting their interest (cults, conspiracy theories, false cases in the media). These idiocies are unable of changing the scientific study itself, but they blur the data, in more of physically intimidating witnesses and researchers (chapter II-9). For this reason, the scientific study of UFOs is inseparable of the study of the manipulations about them.
I thought that the best way to explain UFOs, and the associated epistemological and social problems, was the historical order. It is anyway the order in which the various theories and manipulations answer to each other.
(Permalink) The public appearance of UFOs in 1947 triggered some first attempts of explanations in terms of Russians rockets and the like. Then, quickly, especially during the great waves of the 1950s, the hypothesis as what UFOs were spacecrafts piloted by aliens became the nearby exclusive one, especially on the basis of cases showing the appearance of «characters», or even «visits inside the ships». Facing the immature behaviour of the authorities, associations of citizens formed, the «UFO organizations», to search for the truth. The case showing not so simple, these groups had to learn to investigate scientifically, and even today their reports remain the main source of information on the phenomenon, with some government archives.
In the 1970s, the extraterrestrial thesis remained the only known, and it was offered a large audience, especially with films such as «Close Encounters of the Third Type». At the time, hope was high to finally meet these aliens, and receive a lot from them, in the scientific, social or spiritual domains. I was myself involved in ufology with this hope for motivation. There even was a beginning of an official scientific study of the UFOs, with the GEPAN, in 1977 and 1978, which confirmed the physical reality of the observed objects. In short it was a positive period, with a strong feeling that the solution was at hand, depending only of a particularly favourable case, or even of a revelation by the aliens themselves.
(Permalink) The appearance of UFOs, mainly in the United States, happened in one of the most sinister periods in the history of this country: McCarthyism, cold war, Korea war, napalm, nuclear tests, MK-Ultra, Fort Detrick, etc. It quickly appeared a desire of these negative people to censor UFOs, including by spreading lies and false explanations in the media. A committee of the CIA, the shameful Robertson Panel, recommended different methods of mind control and falsification, and even political monitoring of the ufologists, in the soviet way. Indeed some witnesses have been intimidated, and there actually was law prohibitions for aircraft pilots.
It was long thought that these people had a specific reason for doing so, because they would known things that the public did not know. This idea is still the source of many conspiracy theories today. However the publication by the FOIAct of the Robertson Panel's report shows only a messy and childish way of thinking: these people knew nothing, they were just paranoid, wanting to haze these UFO witnesses and investigators that they did not liked. (As all sociopathic games, McCarthyism also had a homophobic component, which motive was necessarily in the order of the sadistic game).
Generally, the FOIAct disclosures showed no new information concerning UFOs: neither the US Government nor the USAF intelligence knew more than the UFO associations. This rules out some thesis as what, for example, they would have contacts with the aliens. This is the reason why these thesis are considered conspiracy theories today.
I however regularly see «testimonials» claiming they actually saw things which were not disclosed: neutralization of nuclear weapons, visits to military bases, etc. Although this kind of things is to take with extreme caution, we cannot just dismiss them. For the basic UFO archivist, this is to label «high strangeness low credibility», but not «proven false».
It is anyway definitively not certain that everything has been published by the FOIAct; Indeed, it was enough to destroy the too compromising archives. This is what is thought was done for instance with the archives of the MK-Ultra, which publication, if we believe wikipedia, would send their authors to the electric chair. Only remain the testimonies of the victims, who have been rejected from their lawsuits on behalf of the state security. The conclusion is clear: these people are of a mental age of the primary school, using the state secrets privilege only to escape their criminal responsibilities.
It is this trouble play with the state security which destroyed the confidence of the citizens, and is ultimately responsible for all the conspiracy theories today.
However, these child plays had a huge influence on the public opinion: even today, many people are under the influence of the manipulations of the Robertson Panel, thinking that UFOs are hallucinations, and witnesses fools, while rationalists (chapter II-6) support the thesis as what all the observations are only illusions or lies. Anyway, this remains a matter which it is difficult to speak in public, especially in the presence of sociopaths. (In private, many state that they «believe», but they remain ignorant of the facts on the phenomenon). To get an idea of the vicious methods used, and of the amplitude of their results, the Robertson Panel's report recommended to use companies like Disney to spread their propaganda toward children. And they did: I very well remember seeing such propaganda at this time, featuring Donald in the role of the rationalist. This is even the way where I learned about the existence of UFOs! However, in this time I was still a child, and I accepted this propaganda as face value: «mad» people seeing «saucers» and «cigars», the comic was even showing a saucer-dish, and a cigar for smoking!
(Added January 2016) And even today we still see a company like Yahoo (american...) repeatedly and at any occasion assimilating the «ufologists» with the morons who see lizards on Mars. It is hard to believe that the contracts with the CIA are still in effect... which game are they playing, then?
We therefore understand how the mental limitations of the Robertson Panel still affects so many people, two generations after. Although there are no evidence, it looks logical that the great anti-extraterrestrials racist films were also favoured by this policy, continued under secrecy, without written traces, so that they cannot be published by the FOIAct.
So, there is no wonder at why UFOs are still so badly refused, despite the demonstration of their physical existence by several official scientific bodies.
Furthermore, any attitude beyond the «social standards» of the sociopaths automatically brings hazing actions. UFO witnesses, despised by the media, abandoned by society and unprotected by law, are perfect targets for these little sadistic games.
A little known fact which helps to understand the mindset in these times is that the UFO revelation came only two years after the hyper-secret Manhattan project, and after another even stranger case, of the Japanese incendiary balloons sent over the United States through the stratosphere (according to wikipedia). These balloons were completely censored in the media, in order not to inform the Japanese on their possible effectiveness (which has proven to be completely void anyway). It can be assumed that the journalists confronted to the UFOs just followed the commands received some years earlier, commands probably reactivated during the Korea war (1950-1953) for similar reasons. Thus the UFOs arrived in a country which was in fact at war, and actually capable of a censorship worthy of the Soviet Union.
I personally never saw any UFO, but some went close. When I was a child, in Saint Dizier, sometimes around 1960, there was a lady named Coepel (approximate spelling), who said that she several times saw «green rays». This looked so outlandish for us that we assumed she was mad. Later, around 1970, where we lived in our small property near Mont de Marsan, called Le Boniort, we several times saw some lights in the woods, that we assumed were from nearby farms. But in facts there was no farm in this direction. About at the same time, my brother recovered from high in a pine tree, a kind of lamp, shining at night, that he even disassembled (it had screws). Unfortunately he took no care of this, so that it was lost before I saw it. We assumed it was some military beacon, but long after I wonder what it really was. About in the same time, my mother reports that one evening she heard a powerful whistle near the house.
Is this related, but it is about this time that I had my first consciousness awakening.
(Permalink) The idea as what alien spaceship were daily visiting our world had a logical consequence: they could contact us. Either contact some persons in private, or contact our world officially and publicly. At a pinch, some large UFO events like the carousel in Washington (July 1952) seemed almost, at the time, the theatre's three bangs preparing Mankind to such a public revelation.
If a direct public contact by the supposed alien never happened, however dozens of people claimed to be contacted individually, and responsible for delivering messages to humanity. Some even devoted their lives to this task, writing books and conducting movements. All the contactees were spreading spiritual messages, or positive social ideas (the idea as what aliens would be bad appeared publicly in the 1980s, with the punk movement and the anti-extraterrestrials racist films like Alien, Independence Day, etc.).
The prototype of the contactee was Adamsky. He explained a pacifist philosophy, quite ahead of his time (it was the time of the nuclear disarmament movement), foreshadowing the Hippies and the New Age. Of course, he could never prove positively that he had met any extraterrestrial, but nobody could either prove that he was lying on this point. Many inconsistencies however push toward this second conclusion: the fact that he has already tried to spread the same philosophy in the 1930s, claiming a caution from Tibet, or the impossible fact that his aliens were «Venusian» or «Saturnian» (although the conditions on Venus were totally unknown at this time, so that the lie could be exposed only later).
In order to figure out what was really going on, I myself met several «contactees», in the years between 1981 and 1985. The aim was also to directly receive the message of the aliens. I clearly found nothing like this, and the conclusion is without appeal: people who claim to be contacted are, at best, self-dillusioned, often deliberate liars and sometimes dangerous manipulators. I cannot exclude that there would be real contactees among all those who claim to be such, but clearly we need other criteria than mere declarations to make a judgement. Even the beauty of their messages is not a valid criterion, because I have seen several dangerous people writing very beautiful stories and posing themselves as gurus.
The main «contactees» I have met are Jean Michel Surmély («Ashtar Sheran», «Ashtar Command»), Michel Mélendre (related to Frank Fontaine affair in France, and the «Spirale» review in Eliant, recycled in other things since) and Madeleine Paquereau, nicknamed Viviane («Le Faitg», «Les Amis de la Douceur et de l'Harmonie», «Association communautaire pour le Triomphe du Bien»). These people were all able to provide beautiful artistic creations or generous philosophies which, like Adamski, were making them very «credible» as contactees. However all of them eluded my request to meet the extraterrestrials myself, or at least to have some evidence, often under funny pretexts (the best was that they did not liked vegetarians!!). Most of the ones I met were manipulators in various degrees, whether they were «kind» or dangerous. I don't give details here: I am perfectly able to defend myself in a defamation lawsuit, but I have other things to do.
A common manipulation among pseudo-contactees is to say that the aliens would only contact people with a «high enough spiritual level». Implied, if they don't contact you, is that you «do not have the level»! This is how the pseudo-contactees take refuge in the uncheckable, while placing themselves in a position of power.
I also met a perfectly sincere person who told me he went into a ship! It was awesome... just that, some months later, I learned that this person was not remembering he went into the vessel, it was only a pseudo-contactee who told him! How an intense desire can lead to belief, even against the simplest observation!
I also met a woman who lived at the time in Pechabou, near Toulouse (I do not remember her name, the case is in the archives of the GEPAN). This person received burns in a CE3. Since then, she tried to spread the message of the existence of extraterrestrials. This person was therefore 100% sincere, but we cannot speak of a contactee in this case: she received no message from the phenomenon.
Probably several persons discovered spirituality or positive social views in a UFO encounter, sleep paralysis or instant of superconsciousness (chapter V-8). They are logically trying to spread the awareness of the existence of these things, or even the particular «message» they received. But we cannot speak of contactees in this case, but neither of manipulation.
These observations close the debate on Adamski: his generous philosophy, and even some of his very «realistic» points (like his Venusian women saying heel-needles are «unsensical») are absolutely not a proof, neither of his sincerity nor of the reality of his contacts.
Under these conditions, we cannot state that there are public contactees today. However, we cannot exclude that some persons were privately contacted. Then their role is clearly not to convey any message, but they could serve some of the purposes that we shall see in Chapter VIII-8. However the requirements for being selected are clearly high above the average spiritual level of humans: high vibration, non-ego, non-conceptual thought, etc.
Some people claim that the extraterrestrials may have contacted our governments in a covert way, without the knowledge of the public. Such a supposition is little credible (there would be effects) and it is generally considered as a conspiracy theory. However we cannot totally exclude a scenario where emissaries would have delivered a message to our governments, for instance an ultimatum, like in the movie «The day the Earth stood still» (The one in 1951). The governments then were forced to comply, but they presented this compliance as their own decision, for the general public. Nuclear weapons control could result of such an event. More subtly, the extraterrestrials attempted to communicate in a non-conceptual way, and of course our governments understood nothing. The extraterrestrials would then have left, convinced that they could not communicate with these primitive people.
(Permalink) However, the alien hypothesis more and more faced a flowering of many absurd or inconsistent details, accompanied by incomprehensible violations of the laws of physics, or bizarre interactions between the thought of the witness and the behaviour of the phenomenon.
Some of the main authors at that time already noticed that the phenomenon reproduced some of the expectations of the witness: angelic characters in some cases, frightening ugly dwarves in others. But it was in 1978 that Bertrand Méheust published a small book which would normally change the course of things: «Science fiction et soucoupes volantes» («Science fiction and flying saucers»). He noted that other older phenomena (encounters of «fairies», of spirits of nature, of the «Virgin Mary», visions of «battles in the sky»... manifested in the same way than UFOs, appearing suddenly to some witnesses, then just as suddenly disappearing without ever leaving evidence to convince sceptics, behaviour that Bertrand Méheust named «Elusivity». A few other points give a strong impression of a staging for the witness (the «Méheust laws»). As to the content of the observations, it was already present in science fiction novels of the 1920s, which were however little known. Bertrand Méheust gave an explanation in terms of appearances of archetypes in the style of the Jung psychoanalyst.
However he did not denied (in this time) the physical reality of the phenomenon. But then, such interactions of physics and thought opened the door to prodigious hypothesis, such as the interference of an alternate reality into the physical world, making of the UFOs kinds of interfaces between two usually totally separate worlds: the material world and the world of the spirit. The most complete scenario being the close encounter of the fourth kind (CE4) where the witness (called experiencer in this case, note 14) is taken in what appears as a «spaceship», where he meets «aliens» who make bizarre experiments on him, ranking from the terrifying to the ecstatic. Such cases were already well known, inquired and listed in 1978, well before the «abductions» wave of the 1990s.
It is clear that, facing a failing «bolts and buts» extraterrestrial hypothesis, the psychical hypothesis should have become the new basis for work (which does not exclude the extraterrestrial hypothesis, if we assume that they expect a contact with psychical means, totally different of what we expect, see chapter VIII-8).
Some ufologists or parapsychologists, such as John E. Mack, have developed this thesis, seeing in the UFO encounter a spiritual experience, specifically an «alternate reality experience», a privileged moment where the world of the spirit manifests physically. Such an interaction then explains very well most of the characteristics of the phenomenon, the violations of the laws of physics, its protean nature, and even the bizarre laws of Méheust: when the interaction stops, no inexplicable object remains.
(Permalink) One of the most frustrating aspects of UFOs, for a scientist, is the lack of physical materials to study: nobody could ever bring any object which would be really unexplainable. Each time a witness held such an object, there always was some circumstance making that he could not keep it. I am myself in this case, with an object that members of my family found in our property, around 1970: I even not saw this object!
There still are some relative exceptions:
Traces on the ground, of which about a hundred cases are known. They often look unexplainable, but without telling what process created them. The Trans en Provence case (note 31) was studied by the GEIPAN (CNES), and it is considered as one of the strongest science proofs.
Different substances found on the ground, such as oxalic acid, or fallen from the sky, like the wires in Gaillac. The later showed especially frustrating: numerous samples were picked up, but they... all sublimated in 24 hours!
I still found a case where samples would be still available, even if it is a slightly different phenomenon: meat balls rain. The case would have happened in March 1876 in Olympia Springs, Kentucky, and an article in Quora shows a photo of a sample in formol. However the quoted source is a web page requesting to accept advertising hazing cookies, and thus not very credible. Added March 2022: here is another source.
(Permalink) Unfortunately, it happened that, in 1977, almost in the same time that Bertrand Méheust, negationists, disguised as ufologists (through the use of UFO vocabulary, or other manipulations explained in chapter II-9) attacked again with a purely psychological explanation, resembling closely the one of Méheust: the «new ufology». Its «serious» name of «psycho-sociological hypothesis» also brings confusion with the psychical hypothesis of Méheust and Mack. According to this theory, all the UFO testimonies would be the product of psychological tricks, starting from a natural vision, but that the witness is unable to identify. However the argument is more sophistry than psychological science, when for instance Monnerie says that «an unidentified object is conceptually not a UFO». As for the reasoning «no UFOs makes no aliens», I just miss to understand why.
This attack brought a serious blow to the UFO movement, making everybody grasp on a fanatical and simplistic defence of the extraterrestrial thesis, while others were spreading revisionist interpretations of the major investigations of the past. (For example the Lubbock lights were... wild geese! Honk honk honk!) The losers of this adventure were of course the truth, whatever it is, and also the hypothesis of Méheust and Mack, more subtle and difficult to understand, wrongly equated to the one of Monnerie, and rejected in the same way both by the fanatics of the bolts and nuts extraterrestrial thesis, as by the negationists. Few were able to keep a cool head and serious inquiry methods, while groups of strong emotions multiplied, with improvised methods and ready-made conclusions. Most serious people then left a movement which became uncontrollable. And the psychical thesis was forgotten by the general public, even before being known...
In the same time, other films like «Alien» started to give a negative and racist image of the extraterrestrials. Delusions developed into a trash ufology, worthy offspring of the hip-hop-punk ideologies, with the incredible development of as unmovable as implausible rumours, since any attempt if disillusionment is interpreted as a manipulation.
As nobody knows what actually takes place in the Area51, we cannot say a priori that this place is full of aliens. Probably there is here just some ugly little military secrets, without great interest. As to Roswell, it appears that everything was said in the very good article by Pierre Lagrange, «OVNI Presence» No. 54 February in 1995, quoting other investigations by the Centre for UFO Studies in Chicago, in 1989, and also the U.S. General Accounting Office in 1994: despite the countless stories of the kind the man who saw the man who saw the man who saw the man who saw the alien, no direct and non-tampered witness could be found. However the military archives have been found: It seems that the Roswell object was nothing else than a secret balloon, that its discoverers described as a «flying disc» (hanging from a balloon! Perfectly yes, this «detail» is on the official statement, the only known contemporary document, a FBI's Teletype dated July 8, 1947, the one which started all the affair in this time!) without being aware of the way in which the term «flying disc» would be interpreted forty years later... I strongly suspect, seeing the number of fake documents, fake films, and the incredible collection of various trinkets in the Roswell Museum, which of course all arrived here in as anonymous as uncheckable ways, I simply think must there must be in the region a brotherhood of master pranksters, with secret meetings, costumes, big red noses and funny ritual, which sole purpose, apparently pursued with diligence and organization, would be some good laugh at the expense of the UFO cultists. (It might also be a much less funny organization, interested into deceiving and misleading people). I myself received emails from a person claiming to work with the MIBs... But when I replied that I would like to meet them, the communication stopped!
Thus, amplifying disinformation succeeded where the «debunking» failed, not to silence the ufologists, but to give a broader audience to negative prejudices and crazy stories, to the point that in the public opinion is spreading the idea that ufology is a false science occupied only with conspiracies or dissecting fake corpses (a hoax related to the Roswell case).
One interesting thing to note here, is that this punk ufology operated a profound paradigm reversal: while the 1970s ufologists were investigating rationally in the hope of meeting beautiful and benevolent extraterrestrials willing to share science and wisdom with the good willed humans, the 1990s fanatics believe in horrible aliens, malicious, manipulative, seeking to deceive and enslave humanity. It is clear that the purpose is to cancel the positive hopes of the previous years, which were really worrying our prosaic and materialistic governments.
As an evidence, people who saw the anti-extraterrestrials propaganda movie «Alien» perhaps remember the name of the star where the scene unfolds: zeta Reticulis. For an ufologist, this name is familiar: in a famous CE4 case at the time, the Betty and Barney Hill case, Betty was shown an «interstellar navigation map» by the «extraterrestrials», of which she did a sketch from memory. A teacher amateur astronomer, Marjorie Fish, tried to find the native solar system of the «extraterrestrials», using a three dimensional reconstruction of our immediate stellar environment, a remarkable work for the time, hailed by professional astronomers. She went to the conclusion, sensational and credible in this time, that the original system would be zeta of the Reticule, a double star similar to the Sun, at 38 light-years from here. Today few people still believe in such an accuracy from a sketch made from memory, but the fact is that zeta Reticulis appeared in several horror movies or extreme-right movies. It is difficult not to see here an intent, or at least a desire to denigrate authentic facts with horror stories.
Also see the intox movie series «X files» (note 32), at the origin of most of the concepts upon which conspiracy theories were based.
Paradoxically, it is at this time that we found the most official bodies scientifically studying UFOs, and providing confirmation of their physical existence. But how to publish anything, if it is automatically interpreted as horror or as conspiracy theory? Thus even the official scientific study of UFOs is censored by the conspiracy! Without the governments have anything to do!
(Permalink) One of the difficulties of the scientific study of UFOs is that it is very difficult to apprehend rare and unpredictable phenomena, which are known only through imperfect testimonies, without clear physical criteria.
There is however one important exception: Hessdalen, Norway. Here, the UFOs appear often enough to justify a scientific observation station, maintained by the Østfold University College and the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche.
The station recorded spectra, and especially many videos in a perfectly controlled manner (see the website), excluding any tampering or misinterpretation. The videos show kinds of ground fires and flying lights (which appear as dark objects by day). There also are radar echoes, or «intelligent» reactions to a laser beam. The activity started dramatically in 1981. It continues today (2014) at the rate of one or two observations per month. There are other places like this in the world, sometimes more active.
With the exception of close encounters and «characters», the observation in Hessdalen cannot be distinguished from the usual UFO sightings. We can therefore consider that, thanks to the Hessdalen automatic station (and to the many observers who take turns here), the UFOs have been scientifically observed, and therefore their physical reality is proven scientifically.
Therefore, the refusal of this study clearly has no scientific reason.
All the more that, as of today (2014), there is strictly no known explanation of what is happening in Hessdalen.
(We shall see in chapter VII-5 an «official pseudoscience» hypothesis claiming to explain Hessdalen).
(Permalink) Despite the discredit thrown on the UFOs, many governmental organizations have studied them, generally confirming their physical existence and their unexplained character. Unfortunately, beyond this point, no significant discovery was never made, by lack of means or of theories.
Here is a list of these organizations. I know there are others, especially in Spanish speaking countries, but I don't remember which. I shall complete this list when I find them.
-The US Army's Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (a page that wikipedia could not deface, lol). This program did several science searches on interstellar travel. What follows seems to be the continuation:
- 2021: The US Department of Defense created the AOIMSG in November 2021, following the disclosure of several frankly unexplained videos by the US Navy. See also on Joint-Force.com. This organization does not seem to have any Internet site yet.
-The USAF's Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force created in the wake of the 2020 recognition of real cases.
-The GEPAN in France, started in 1978 as a division of the CNES, quickly demonstrated the physical reality of the phenomenon, and investigated many cases. However starting from 1983, various shenanigans weakened it, from the hostility of scientistists (note 92). It was replaced in 1988 by the French SEPRA, with reduced means, then by the GEIPAN in 2005. Today (2014) it is still not allowed to publish its results, merely informing the public about perception errors.
-Le Project Condign, conducted in secret between 1997 and 2000 by the Defence Intelligence Staff (DIS) in England, confirmed the physical reality of the UFO phenomenon. Their hypothesis, quite elaborated, is that they would be a still unknown plasma phenomenon. We shall discuss this hypothesis with more details further in this chapter.
-The CEFAA, in Chile, exchange with several other official organisms in the world.
-The CRIDOVNI in Uruguay, military
Associations or private bodies which scientifically studied or are scientifically studying the UFOs:
-The Capella project, site of Jacques Vallée (Ufology precursor)
-Centro Regional Investigador de Fenómenos Aeroespaciales y Terrestres in Argentina, linked to the army
-The association COMETA, gathering French army people and scientists, published in 1999 the COMETA report (pdf), which concluded the certainty of the existence of the phenomenon, and the possibility that it leads to an alien contact. Its purpose is to prepare the Governments for such an idea. The association is today sleeping.
-The CUFOS (Center for UFO Studies) in the USA was started in 1973 by Dr. J. Allen Hynek, astronomist. This gives it a strong science caution.
-Added February 2022: The Galileo Project (Also in «Science») is a private group created in 2022 in the wake of the US Navy recognition. Based on known physics, standard science methodology and the literal ET hypothesis. They have large plans for Earth and astronomy detection stations. (With my opinion, it is heartening to see resurrecting the amateur scientific ufology after 45 years of destruction by the media and conspiracy wackos. But known physics will not do it.)
-The MUFON (Mutual UFO Network) in the USA is one of the largest and most ancient organisations: scientific inquiries with powerful means.
-The NARCAP in the USA, a commission of the professionnals of civil aviation
-The French SAPT (Société d'Astronomie Populaire de Toulouse) is an amateur astronomy association which was doing UFO investigations. This activity seems discontinued, but they may have archives. They gather every Sunday at the observatoire de Jolimont in Toulouse, France.
-Sigma2 in France, a private commission of civil aviation professionnals
-The European network UFoCom.
-The UFocus in New Zealand, professionnals dof civil aviation, astronomy, etc.
-The UFo-science in France.
-Added January 2017: I just added some entries in these two lists. There is a striking majority of intelligence or aviation professionnals, far away of the boosting disinformation image carried along by the medias as what ufologists would all be barmy conspirationnists.
Group with a spiritual approach of UFOs, related or not with General Epistemology:
-The John E Mack Institute.
(Permalink) It all started in 1987 from Whitley Strieber, a hitherto unknown horror writer, and his book «Communion», where he claims he experienced what appears at first sight as a frightening CE4, of course very sexual, with hideous small aliens, the «greys». As such ugly dwarves were already seen in famous CE4 cases, the story seemed «likely» for anyone with an UFO culture at the time. Strieber very probably invented his story from the widely described cases in the literature, as also did the anti-extraterrestrials racist propaganda films at the time. His hideous «Alien» face was obviously plagiarized from a sketch by Betty Hill, to which he removed the pupils to make it look inhuman or scary.
But the display of this deliberately ugly «extraterrestrial» face in every library showcases in the USA had a consequence that nobody expected: thousands, and then millions of people, without UFO culture, claimed that they were also hijacked by the «greys»! And these testimonies were meeting all the criteria of credibility, with even violent emotions or trauma! To the point that, in the 1990s, the phenomenon of «alien abduction» took enormous proportions, becoming a major cultural fact in the United States and worrying the government.
A typical abduction session begins in the bed: the experiencer feels paralyzed or unable to communicate with other persons around. Then, for a while, he is immersed in what seems to be an alternate reality, which it accessed without transition, often from the bedroom (no more flying saucer). And what he experiences in this other «reality» is amazing with extravagance: gynaecological and anal examinations, removal of gametes for «genetic experiments» in order to «regenerate the alien race», presentation of puny «hybrid babies», violent emotional situation ranging from rape and torture to mystical ecstasy, meeting of rather ugly «greys», of more «human» characters wearing togas and insignias, meeting of... American army people in underground secret bases, implants in the body of the witnesses, implantation of fetuses who will be recovered later, etc. etc. etc.
Of course, many writers rebounded on the affair, which also made busy the UFO organizations surviving the previous period. The most famous is undoubtedly Bud Hopkins, who questioned many experiencers under hypnosis, to make them «remember» the most incredible stories. For a time, the abductions also had the caution of some parapsychology scientists, such as John E. Mack, who saw the abduction as a spiritual experience, specifically an «alternate reality experience». Thus, between the cases of abduction in the room, the classical CE4, and the extraordinary cases of Bud Hopkins showed both the characteristics of abduction and CE4 (hijacking in the room simultaneously with the vision of a «saucer»), we then had the feeling of a vast protean phenomenon, which started suddenly to strongly influence mankind, perhaps announcing some sort of spiritual revolution where our conscience would finally take control of our limited brains.
About me personally, I joined this current of though, since I had several times these very same experiences which were called abduction in this time (but not as disgusting as Strieber's, still). I had therefore developed a thesis similar to Mack. In order to present this thesis of the interaction of the psychical versus the matterial I devoted a long chapter 68 of the first version of this book (2000), followed by another chapter 69 on the practical consequences of the phenomenon (or the recommended conduct in its presence). I also wrote a small book «Quiet abduction», more accessible to the general public, in the hope of helping to accept the phenomenon. In the wake of Strieber's book, I had good chances to reach a lot of people... except for one little detail: the publishers are not interested in a positive book! Its distribution therefore remained confidential (I removed it from sale since, because of the errors it contains. But I can't prevent it from still lingering on the Internet)
Because there is a continuation...
(Permalink) Some crafty ones eventually noted that the so-called stories of «abduction» exactly match a type of experience familiar to the sleep specialists: the sleep paralysis (chapter V-8), also known under the names of hypnagogic or hypnopompic experiences. Or traditionally known as the nightmare... quite simply. And these experiences have nothing inexplicable, they are just a variant of the dream, which occurs when we are half awake (and they are not «hallucinations», as we often read: they happen to perfectly normal people, with no psychological or psychiatric disorders)
In more, these experiences are common, which easily explains the millions of «witnesses». The only extraordinary thing is the degree of dissociation between generations which was needed to cancel the knowledge of such an old, banal and common phenomenon, that almost all parents are facing (as it often happens to young children).
And of course these experiences are totally unrelated with extraterrestrials (although they are conducive of parapsychological phenomena, as noted by Simon J. Sherwood, of Department of psychology of the University of Edinburgh).
In the wake, I quickly noticed that the other pillar of the abduction, the fantastic testimonies of Bud Hopkins, was no more solid. Indeed his testimonies were essentially obtained under hypnosis (chapter V-8), a method that has been heavily criticised since (It was also used during divorces to extract false testimonies of paedophilia from children, and condemn completely innocent fathers)
A typical case, probably the most famous one, is known as the Linda Cortile case (pseudonym). Linda tells a «visit» in her bedroom of Manhattan, by «entities» that she calls extraterrestrials. In the same time, several witnesses, including not less than Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, see a flying saucer parked halfway up a building, just in front of Linda's bedroom! Presented in this way, such a case (and others similar reported by Bud Hopkins) appeared as a formal proof that abductions are really linked to UFOs. Or that there is a gradation between the abductions (benign but common) and the CE4 (extraordinary but rare), pointing to a unique phenomenon in all the cases: visions in the room were CE4! Soon, Bud Hopkins hypnotized Linda to make her «remember» stories of «scandalous» sex acts aboard the saucer, while witnesses brought other elements, meeting Linda in the saucer, revealing to be secret agents, etc.
Some «details» however ended up to catch my attention: Linda stories happened only under hypnosis by Bud Hopkins, the «witnesses», of course «anonymous», appeared only to Bud Hopkins, and of course Javier Perez de Cuellar totally denied to ever have seen any UFO. In short, without Bud Hopkins, there is no story, no saucer, no alien... just a very common sleep paralysis by Linda.
Thus collapses in turn the link between sleep paralysis and CE4, which then appear as two different phenomena (although with interesting common features, such as the scenarios, suggesting a common scenario generator). For some time I felt a little bit alone, but the excitement about abduction fell as quickly as it raised... and others also ended up to notice the same thing, such as for instance an article by the John E Mack Institute, which warns against «the priests of high strangeness», namely Bud Hopkins.
As to myself, I had based the Version 1 of my book on «enquête sur les Enlèvements Extraterrestres» by Marie Thérèse de Brosses, in these terms: (I quote :) «a comprehensive and detailed inquiry on the abduction question, telling what is to be told while keeping a cool head. Thanks to her and to this great work: without it, I should even not be able to write these chapters on abduction. Unless otherwise noted, all data on abduction into these chapters comes from this book, so far that it was sometimes difficult to avoid paraphrasing it. To be fair, I indicate such inspirited passages with (MT) One can also with profit examine a paper on the subject in the French scientific review «Science et Avenir», which can hardly be suspected of being «antirational»: «Rencontres du 4eme type», page 90, July 1997)» (end of quote, written in 2000).
The problem with this book is that since, Internet allowed me to check its content... and I simply found no mention of the impressive cases she is speaking about. Not only no enquiries, but even not a single reference, nothing. This is what started to puzzle me, even prior understanding the problem with Bud Hopkins.
It is also interesting to note my reference to a serious scientific journal (which mentioned Marie Thérèse de Brosses's book): the affair took enough scale and credibility to be of interested to scientists. Today, after this deflation and these revelations, there is a lot to bet that ufology lost still more credit (and indeed, less official organisations deal with it today, 2014)
Very likely this collapse of the abduction will lead other ufologists to discouragement, and even to scepticism. But the most serious is that, for the general public, the word «ufology» has become synonymous with delirium or conspiracy theories, while Strieber's small ugly face is now the social norm for extraterrestrials (we even see it in scientific reviews). Lie and truth are like crop and weed: sow them in equal quantity, you always reap more lie than truth. At a pinch, it would be by far the best method to recognize them, hihihi!
(was chapter 69 in version 1)
(Permalink) My first visions of sleep paralysis (which I called abduction in this time) were, like almost everyone else, from grotesque succubus, or even evil-looking entities. But, as a practitioner of meditation, I quickly noticed that easy daily visualizations can alter these visions. In fact, even simple reading on abduction can produce this effect. So I got a CIA agent, and even an extraterrestrial in silvery uniform (but not American military, sorry, I may not be enough anti-American for that). But under the influence of my meditation, the contents of my experiences changed to beautiful women and pleasant experiences... unfortunately I reached the «age limit» (40 years) beyond which these phenomena stop to happen (except for one very useful case in 2013, but I cannot publish its content)
Based on this proven basis, I therefore developed in version 1 this long chapter 69 where I was describing different stakes and methods to control and to use the phenomenon.
Another reason why I so much developed this part was the idea that people could actually meet in another reality, starting to develop a new spiritual society. This idea was based on the concept of «dream mates» proposed by Marie Thérèse de Brosses: people encountering in the world of the abduction, and who later meet in the physical world, a situation which could lead to very interesting spiritual connivances. However, when Internet started to become usable, I found no other references on dream mates than... my own page! (I of course removed this reference) Even today, this word appears only in a «lexicon of abduction» in French, which does not cite any source... except Bud Hopkins.
Obviously, if the sleep paralysis is only an individual vision, the stakes are much more limited, only to a personal scope. However this is still very interesting. Especially, I maintain that the sleep paralysis remains usable for spiritual purposes, meditation and Tantric visualization (or at least to avoid frightening or grotesque visions). I would go even further, since the sleep paralysis can produce extrasensory perceptions (as I observed) and probably other parapsychological phenomena. So I encourage everybody who often have sleep paralysis to use them in their spiritual practice, as shown above. We can used for this simple daily visualizations, to direct their content: we visualize that we are in the situation, and that beautiful visions appear, or we perceive faraway places, etc. You can also use more elaborate practices such as the yoga of dream (one of the six Yogas of Naropa)
For children, who also have experiences of this kind, and who can be seriously frightened see traumatized, my advice is to read beautiful stories (fairies, Angels, Elves...) before sleep, and throw the horrible books of sorcerers and vampires. Parents should help in that direction. The first thing is to explain that these experiences are only dreams, that we cannot prevent but that we can make less scary if we have beautiful things in mind before falling asleep.
I think that, in the Mack hypothesis as what the CE4 are interference of the spiritual world into the physical world, then the previous methods should also apply to the CE4, and produce even more powerful effects. However it is very difficult to check this, given the rarity of the CE4 (only 200 checked cases to date). We need to find somebody who have them often, but I have never heard of such cases.
(Permalink) Probably some will cheer me for being able to recognize the falsehood of a theory in which I however invested with enthusiasm.
I however decline any merit: such questioning are routine when we are seeking the truth, or a better society. I have several more difficult ones in my pocket, such as as to become vegetarian, or eliminating Marxism or racism influences from my mind. More generally, we saw in chapter V-12 the need for non-attachment to opinions, which is anyway one of the basis of the scientific method.
On the other hand, it is important to note that this abandonment does not mean taking the opposite course. I therefore did not become «sceptical»!
So I continue to think that UFOs must be studied objectively. Cases are still happening, even if they are more rare. People are still trying to deal with them, even if they probably no more investigate, by lack of means. I admire them, because it is very difficult, and very discouraging, to work, and even to only discuss, when Roswell, the CIA or the hideous grey of Strieber soar every ten sentences in a meeting.
I also still think that the CE4 exist (they are known by inquiries, not by a single author) and I continue to support the psychical assumption of the deceased John E Mack as what these encounters would be interference of a spiritual reality into the physical world. There are certainly other hypotheses still open, but it is one which best explains the facts, especially the hardest to explain: the incredible violations of the laws of physics and of time. I therefore explain this hypothesis in the next chapter VII-3.
(Permalink) This hypothesis is less worked out, but it claims to explain UFOs without parapsychology or extraterrestrials. It is the result of the convergence of various intuitions, and the study of several other poorly understood phenomena.
The first to evoke this assumption was Paul Devereux, under the name of Earth Lights. He linked UFOs to several unexplained luminous phenomena:
-The ball lightning, generally considered as a plasma ball. However nobody knows how it can store enough energy, and especially how it can remain stable for so long a time. However, it seems that nobody noticed that descriptions of ball lightning usually seem to obey the laws of Méheust, which implies a component related to consciousness (of the witness, or another who would control the phenomenon).
-Earthquake lights, which existence is scientifically recognized at least since the Aquila earthquake in Italy (2009) (see chapter VII-5) where several were filmed (but I did not found the movies on the Internet). Their explanation is today unknown (2014).
The Demeter satellite was launched to study these phenomena and other similar ones. The final results show slight perturbations of the ionosphere before earthquake, but only statistically (unusable for a prediction). Much larger perturbations are caused by military low frequency emitters.
-The Hessdalen lights, often considered as UFO. Scientific observations have measured spectra of ionized air (plasma) with a power of several kilowatts.
-Will o'the wisp and other «spooklights» observed especially in certain places, and which seem to react to the behaviour of the witness: approach, then avoidance. There also are the laws of Méheust.
The first official scientists to talk about the plasma hypothesis were project Condign, which explain the UFO with still unknown plasma phenomena. The advantage is to explain with a single hypothesis a wide variety of phenomena. But the downside is that, precisely, we need an unknown form of plasma, able to maintain itself while emitting kilowatts, or even megawatts. It is unclear from where such an energy comes from, in nature.
Project Condign even explained the visions of characters in CE3 and CE4, by hallucinations caused by the intense magnetic field. This hypothesis has many advantages, among others do not require estraterrestrials: visions of CE4 would just be kinds of dreams, similar to sleep paralysis. This at least would simply explain the similarities of scenarios between the two! However this hypothesis runs into serious difficulties:
-Cases with several simultaneous experiencers telling the same story (one of the most precisely known cases being the Pascagoula Abduction case Hickson and Parker, in 1973).
-Many cases of CE3 and CE4 also have more distant witnesses who attended the hijacking (Valdez case), without being kidnapped themselves, or else they are the culmination of a local wave.
-Many people have been in direct contact with lightning, and even with ball lightning, but none recounted such stories.
-Some cases show violations of the laws of physics, and even of the passage of time, such as the Valdez case in 1977. Such anomalies are totally unexplainable to classical physics.
-This does not explain all the dark objects, or with a metallic appearance (many cases, including in Hessdalen).
I shall however not completely reject the plasma hypothesis. The intuition of Paul Devereux could prove very interesting, if we assume for example that plasmas, due to their complex interactions, would ease the appearance of a psychical domain, just like neural networks do. Thus a consciousness could use it as a vehicle, and even enhance the phenomenon: the plasma would then maintain itself, with inexplicably radiating an energy which would come from elsewhere. Involved consciousness could be:
-The one of the experiencer, which would explain the similarity of the CE4 with sleep paralysis
-The one of a «spirit of place» (chapter V-17), a consciousness which would appear throughout the complex interactions in an ecosystem. This case would explain phenomena recurrently appearing in a given location, such as will o'the wisp or «spooklights».
-Eventually, the one of an extraterrestrial «tourist», who would come to make tickles to the local monkeys, but not allowed to stay.
In addition, the phenomenon would be favoured when it has a source of energy to start: lightning, impeding earthquake. But it can also start without: UFO, will o'the wisp.
The conclusion is that, even if plasma play a role, we cannot really remove other consciousnesses.
If found, interactions between consciousness and electromagnetic phenomena would prove many hypothesis considered today as conspiracy theories.
(Permalink) Recently attending a «free» UFO meeting, I saw «speakers» presenting phoney methods and movies without nothing inexplicable. But when I started to speak of investigating scientifically, a vacuum appeared around me... It is very clear that a large number of people who call themselves «ufologists» are only playing at making themselves believe things. Are there still sincere ufologists? What remain of the large organizations of the 1960s? Do we need to invent a new word, like «ufonomist», to be differentiated of all the shenanigans?
Yet we still need inquiries: seemingly, cases continue to happen, and each year invaluable information is lost. And witnesses seem hardly more welcome than in the 1950s, about mockery and repression.
But above all, we need to reorient the theoretical reflection on the basis of the psychical or spiritual hypothesis, the one of Méheust and Mack, that I present with more details in the next chapter VII-3, in the theoretical frame of the logical self-generation theory.
(Added May 05, 2020)
(Permalink) According to an article in Futura Science, the Pentagon released three videos, officially and explicitly acknowledging the unidentified nature of these objects. The Pentagon justifies its «transparency initiative» «to cut down all the misconceptions circulating on UFOs».
If this case itself is not extraordinary by its content (points in the sky), it is nevertheless very interesting, according to several points of view:
☻ Its high technical quality (observation using state-of-the-art military optical instruments)
☻ Its official support, which makes of it an historical case (and allowed for its publication in a scientific journal, usually reluctant to deal with these subjects).
☻ Put an end to 67 years of ufosceptic denial due to the McCarthyist policies of the CIA's Robertson Panel.
Let us hope that this event will usher a new era of scientific study of this intriguing phenomenon (and will end up all the delirious stuff around it)
Added June 2021: un article in Science Alert adds the recognition of a «pyramid UFO». Here too, videos of this object were circulating since some years, but we were so much desentitized by boosting disinformation that I paid no attention.
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