The UFO Iconoclast(s)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Mystery of Aliens

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Ancient Astronaut theorists posit the idea that the messengers and gods of old were extraterrestrial visitors, which is not necessarily a faulty supposition, considering the circumstantial “evidence” presented to bolster the hypothesis.

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The visitors were not gray with large, almond-shaped eyes as they are rendered today by descriptives.

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In mythology and religious-oriented works, the visitors of old were manifested by an aura that bespoke something otherworldly but not grotesque.

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Those visitors often mated with human beings, as recounted in the Genesis account of the Hebrew Bible [6:1]:

...The sons of God saw that the daughters of man were good, and they took themselves wives from whomever they chose. God said, ’My spirit will not continue to judge man forever, since he is nothing but flesh. His days shall be 120 years’. The Nephilim were on the earth in those days and also later. The sons of God had come to the daughters of man and had fathered them. They were the mightiest ones who ever existed, men of renown.

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And they also appear in the Greek myths, as Gods, whose dalliances produced such Greek Heroes as Achilles and Heracles.

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And Merlin, the great wizard of the Arthurian legends, was said to have been fathered by an Incubus. [Bulfinch]

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In the 1950s, flying saucer “occupants’ – as reported by observers – were usually grotesque or small, bizarre creatures, akin to the little people folklore of the British Isles.

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In the 1960s, those visitors morphed into the so-called “grays” which evolved out of the Betty and Barney Hill abduction saga.

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There is a dispute, extant, about what Betty Hill really described, at first, about her “abductors” – mostly having to do with their noses. But the “creatures” she allegedly encountered eventually came into being as the ubiquitous UFO people pictured when UFO occupants are discussed:

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The question posed is this…

What happened between 5,000 years ago when the Sumerians pictured their “gods” and the modern era when UFO beings are described? [Intelligent Life in the Universe, Shklovskii/Sagan, Delta, 1966]

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That is, why has the intruders’ physiognomy changed?

Yes, we accept the reality behind the myths and Biblical renditions of gods (or messengers from above).

We also think that some relatively recent observations of creatures nearby, what some call, UFOs or, better, flying saucers, are true also, whether created as an illusion or actually as perceived.

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(The alien abduction phenomenon, which remains controversial and not proven, has been, in one form or another, around since the beginning of oral and written history, as anyone familiar with mythology and religious texts knows.)

There is a mystery in all this, one that is connected in all its aspects by the similarities in the visitations.

The difference lies in how the “visitors” appeared, not in how they acted, but what they looked like.

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Are there, or were there, two different classes of beings – some actually gods (or imagined as such) and some actually extraterrestrials (or imagined as such)?

It’s a mystery, either way…..

(And yes, we’ve covered this before, in 2007)

62 Comments:

  • People inferring alien visitation from cherry-picked examples of petroglyphs and rock art are telling us what they see rather than what the original artists saw...or tried to convey. It seems like a Rorschach mentality. At times, these wild speculations irritate me when they exceed the evidence to such an extent. Frequently, they don't stop at the notion that these disparate images represent 'aliens,' they elaborate to their heart's content with genetic engineering and seeding. 'Slave species' are extrapolated from what are essentially abstract concepts expressed by people with fewer cultural reference points than we have today.

    It's 'god in the gaps' thinking.

    At the heart of it all, from my perspective, is this unmentioned notion that our distant ancestors were devoid of imagination. They fail to accept that such images could be as imaginary as a child's painting or a Greek Gorgon. By denying a capacity for imagination, they interpret their chosen images as portraits of actual beings/life-forms. It's the same thinking that interprets anything that flies in ancient texts and myths to be 'ancient astronauts.' Furthermore, the creation of gods has always had political capital in uniting one set of beliefs against another. But, hey, let's forget about all that human ingenuity and explain it away as 'aliens.'

    If artists like Dali, Jim Davies and Bosch can present other worlds, why not the guys from back when? Likewise, writers like Iain M Banks, Tolkien and JK Rowling can conjure up histories and characters that we know damn well aren't based in reality. So why should we add more credence to ancient stories of visiting gods from the skies? For those that go down that path, why don't they include the entire pantheon of mythical beings too? As far as I can tell, it's more cherry-picking what they like and disregarding the rest.

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • Or, Kandinksy, the ancients depicted, just as modern artists and writers do today, what they knew or saw.

    Imagination embellished what they saw or heard perhaps -- very likely.

    But you're giving a lot of creativity to a much smaller demographic than what we have nowadays.

    Either we have gods, or extraterrestrials, or very imaginative human beings.

    All are open to discussion, and none can be dismissed out of hand.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • Wasn't this exactly how Von Daniken did his 'research'? I read the first of his books, most of the second (which repeated a lot of the first), then got sidetracked into James Randi & Ronald Story. After these I abandoned von Daniken forever. He once told us how ancient images on rocks 'proved' the ETs of old performed heart transplants.
    Until it was shown these images were modern (post-1967) not ancient.

    By Blogger cda, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • CDA:

    I am not proposing that the ancient visitors (the gods) were UFO aliens.

    What I am proposing is that something odd happened to early cultures, reflected in their myths, religious texts, and even their histories.

    Was early man intruded upon by gods, extraterrestrials, Mac Tonnies' cryptoterrestrials, or delusions, maybe even artistic imagination, as Kandinsky has it?

    What caused the influx of stories and art that depicted intervention by "beings" not quite human?

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • I've always looked at it from the standpoint of cultural filters.

    Why do they appear different today than far flung history? Because we are different people, more technologically sophisticated and far removed in many aspects from our ancestors.

    This is not to say that such experiences are not "real" in the sense of see, touch, hear, smell, or interaction.

    But to some degree I think it's somewhat safe to say a portion of these experiences discussed over the years were in conjunction with being "shown visions" by these "aliens". So, can we say there's an ability, or a side effect(?)that these experiences/beings can radically alter human perception? I tend to think so.

    That being the case, I see no reason to accept any visual perception of what we call this enigmatic "other" as true (or even true enough).

    Let's also not forget the use of psychoactive substances by many ancients. Again, this doesn't say none of these accounts are real. But real in what sense? Pablo Amaringo's ayahuasca paintings show many objects seen in ayahuasca visions that are for lack of better words, flying saucers. These objects look very similar to other ancient culture's alleged paintings of these strange objects. Coinsidence?

    http://www.pabloamaringo.com/

    Who knows.

    By Blogger JR, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • Then, of course, JR, the manifestations could have been real, tangible, just as the observation of little men outside a strange craft, in our day, could be real.

    Possible, surely...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • If it's happening now, it's been happening all along.

    By Blogger Frank Stalter, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • Really good post! You bring up some really good ideas. I agree that the aliens may have varied tremendously. You see depictions of Vimanas, from ancient India, that the aliens or "gods" were fighting eachother. You see varying depictions of "Gods" or aliens from Native American Tribes, Central American, and South American ancient cultures. Also the possiblities of Greek Mythology being Aliens. Each Greek God varied tremendously.

    When studying the ancient cultures of the world.. one begins to see the possibity of Ancient Aliens influencing early mankind and civilization not only is possible.. but makes sense.

    http://alienswerehere.com/

    By Blogger Aliens Were Here, at Thursday, March 10, 2011  

  • Sumer formed after 5,000 bce, historically existing from about 3,500, not 10,000.

    Sumer, I think, is the earliest evidence of pantheon gods or 'gods proper', differentiated from spirits and forces.

    Prior to its influence, the common spirit was a ghost and the practice is often referred to as the 'skull cult', the evidence for which goes back to the paleolithic. This is most often confused with "ancestor worship". The evidence strongly suggests it was not ancestors, but the recently dead who were the subject of skull cults. For example, early on, older skulls were simply shoved aside to be replaced by newer ones (Natufian culture, circa 10,000 bce).

    Several thousand years later, in Jericho, skulls are plastered and painted, given shell eyes and wigs. Later still, in Ain Ghazal, skulls are superceded by statues -- proto-gods perhaps -- which are buried like corpses and also exhumed, and perhaps buried again. No one knows what it was all about. It indicates to me that the culture needed something more long-term than skulls of recognizable persons (what happens when everyone is too young to know whose skull it was?).

    Between then and Sumer, a kind of Animism developed, blending the human and the animal, predating Egypt. Some figures are 'greyish' with triangular heads, large eyes, and small to no mouths and noses. They are considered to be wearing bird or insect masks. I don't know.

    Although Sumerians had ghosts, they did not have a skull cult. They had the gods, instead. Separating the head from the body was frowned upon because it would create a wandering (and therefore troublesome) ghost (it was something one did to an enemy killed in combat, if ever).

    The Sumerians divided the world into three locales, the earth, the netherworld, and beyond the sky. The last is where the gods came from. I don't recall any account as to why the gods came down to earth. They were here before us because they created us, basically by mixing the dna (blood) of a god with clay (mud).

    So, we were created in the image and likeness of a god. The first part of Genesis is a precis of Sumerian-originated material gotten from Babylon.

    The differences between gods and humans are that the gods did not age and die, although they could be killed (there are dead gods) by other gods. Humans were considered to be dark and short, gods were tall and ruddy, golden, bright. They were also recognizable by having Melam (Shekinah, halo, aura).

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • Dom,

    I'm using the 10,000 B.C. figure from Shklovskii/Sagan's book, "Intelligent life in the Universe" [Delta, NY, 1966, Page 456 ff.] which provides the Sumerians as the forerunners of the Akkadians, Babylonians, Assyrians, and Persians.

    The Sumerians are the unknown peoples that provide the pantheon of gods who, allegedly, brought culture and techinical know-how to early mankind.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • The Sumerians were definitely "the forerunners of the Akkadians, Babylonians, Assyrians, and Persians" -- and us -- however, there is no way they were there in 10,000. The period prior to Sumer is known as the Ubaid culture. Whether the Sumerians emerged from the Ubaids or migrated in is debated.

    I don't think we can even dig down to the 10,000bce stratum because of the water table.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • Don:

    I should have written "about 10,000years ago" (per Sagan) and not used the B.C. sobriquet.

    I've edited the copy accordingly.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • "Then, of course, JR, the manifestations could have been real, tangible, just as the observation of little men outside a strange craft, in our day, could be real."

    Absolutely. But the problem often is we're not able to qualify "real" in most cases unless there's direct effects on environment or physical interaction with the manifestation. Even physical interaction with a witness is questionable as that too is based on perception.

    If you saw a disc in the air, sunlight glinting off it's hull - if it were close enough, could you ping a rock off of it? Who can say.

    By Blogger JR, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • Well, JR, if you're going to bring in Cartesian philosophy (about reality), we are doomed here, as the gang who reads this stuff is not able to keep such a discussion within the realm of academic debate.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, March 11, 2011  

  • What if the answer is "none of the above"?

    What if there are forms of advanced non-human intelligence, regardless of origin (and there are likely to be more than one if there is even one form of advanced intelligence visiting or resident), that can appear in various forms? As do UFOs?

    What if none of the humanoid forms observed over time are what they seem, in terms of appearance or perceived morphology?

    What if the purpose or point of appearing in such a wide variety of humanoid forms is to act as a kind of cultural and informational interface, to both fulfill our expectations and so as to not appear so radically different we would not be able to "relate" to them on a psychological basis, and that might inspire either fright or cognitive dissonance due to being so different as to suggest they might be beyond our parameters of acceptability or comprehension?

    I suspect the humanoid form/s is/are a motif, a device, or a possible "ploy," and designed for our needs, wants, and desires for some degree of rough familiarity, and part of a possibly inherent confabulation on our part to transmute the signal into a form which we see as somewhat similar to us, which may be intentional, and may even be co-created or co-evolved, in ways.

    I think "they" are most probably so extraordinarily different that nearly all of our conceptions of the forms and external nature of "the other" that we have synthesized over thousands of years in evolving and variant morphologies over time and differing cultures are probably wrong, and are primarily created by ourselves (and potentially "the others"), to suit our anthropocentric or cultural needs, among several others, and the source of this "other" intelligence(s) may be able to key directly into that faculty of our consciousness in an intentional manner to facilitate that aspect of our minds "eye" or perception. [Of course, that's just speculation, also, but we need to think "outside the box" when objectively considering the issues involved.]

    But there may be some very good, or effective reasons for it we still cannot clearly discern. The question is, if they are the puppets, who and what are the puppet-masters? And, in turn, who pulls their strings?

    I'd really like to see some discussion of this concept in this comment thread, as I think this idea is as valid, if not more so, than any other generally assumed as a kind of first level interpretation--I'm suggesting we have to "think like an alien," as it were, and what we might do visiting or residing on another planet with a pre-existing form of native intelligence we would have to cope with on one level or another to both accomplish our goals, and not rouse the natives into some kind of either hostile or worshipping, or worse, co-dependent, behavior or actions and consequences.

    Think about plausible deniability, and a kind of flexible, "leaky" prime imperative to not interfere, or at least not too much, or in too obvious a manner--ambiguous, and covert, not overt).

    I think the "Avatar" model, or "shape-shifter" idea both have some real validity considering the circumstances and need for camouflage of any kind of presence or visitation to be successful, and that the useful function such synthesized appearances might serve are manifold. I can think of many, many reasons why this model may be quite useful and appropriate to employ.

    To begin to parse the mystery and "understand the alien" we must ourselves think like "a stranger in a strange land," using both deductive and inductive logic in recursive ways.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Saturday, March 12, 2011  

  • Or, again, the "visitors" were and are just like us, physically anyway.

    The science-fiction hypotheses seem to be a stretch, a la Jacques Vallee.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, March 12, 2011  

  • If ETs even exist and were our progenetors it does seem they weren't offensive looking to humans. We don't read of any ancient texts describing how monstrous they looked.

    Then again, in the OT, usually when angels showed up, people were really scared of them. They weren't the victorian iconic cherubs that we see plastered throughout cemetaries, in peoples gardens and on greeting cards. But maybe those OT angels weren't the same as what we, in our pop-culture call 'ancient astronauts'.

    And perhaps there has been a variety of earthbound entities, quite different from us humans - whether we call them ultraterrestrials, cryptoterrestrials or whatever. These could be the beings represented in the cryptic folklore of Europe, Africa, the middle-east and the Americas: the most notable are the tiny but powerful beings with big heads and eyes that have the predilection for stealing people. The fairies, sylphs, djinn of hundreds of years ago may simply be known as 'grey aliens' now.

    ~ Susan

    By Blogger Susan, at Monday, March 14, 2011  

  • Susan:

    The Greek myths, the Hindu pantheon, and the Incan stories do not indicate grotesque entities.

    Yes, some "visitors" were strange but not described in a way that would accomodate the "gray" identification.

    But no one has really done a thorough comparison on the matter.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, March 14, 2011  

  • @RR & Susan:

    "Or, again, the "visitors" were and are just like us, physically anyway.

    "The science-fiction hypotheses seem to be a stretch, a la Jacques Vallee."


    ----------------------------------------------------------

    "If ETs even exist and were our progenetors it does seem they weren't offensive looking to humans. We don't read of any ancient texts describing how monstrous they looked.

    [That depends on which ancient texts you might be referring to] / sgs

    [snip]

    "And perhaps there has been a variety of earthbound entities, quite different from us humans - whether we call them ultraterrestrials, cryptoterrestrials or whatever."

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Part 1 of 3:

    You both may be making an argument for my speculative interpretation here, in a way.

    First, I don’t think it is either SciFi or a stretch to deeply consider some of Jacques Vallee’s long-time speculations on the nature of the differing entities humanity has dealt with for thousands of years, and across various civilizations and cultures world-wide as either unlikely or improbable.

    In fact, what I find improbable is the idea that any form of extremely advanced non-human intelligence would actually physically be (or appear) in their native or genuine form as either human beings or even humanoid in form.

    You may disagree, but what evidence is there that the myriad sightings of entities, either near some form of landed UFO or more commonly, seen by themselves under various circumstances but not near or associated with a UFO sighting or landed “vehicle,” were credibly of humans or even humanoids?

    Like most of the evidence in this field, it is anecdotal, and derives from human perception, or the retelling, and thus the memory and bias of the witnesses involved, and the people they tell.

    In fact, although it is not commonly known, there are also a large number of entity sightings of "beings" that have not appeared in either human or humanoid form, both near alleged UFOs and more often alone, but more often than not, these relatively rare kind of sightings, of some kinds of entities that have no human or humanoid morphology, are really not that uncommon, but most often have been either discarded or suppressed in the various databases of close encounters and entity sightings since the 1880's.

    Post-WW II UFO groups, such as NICAP and APRO, for a very long time, for example, discarded incidents reported by witnesses to them of both landed UFOs and particularly entities reported, either nearby or appearing by themselves, especially if they did not have a humanoid appearance. Landed UFOs and "aliens" were considered too outlandish to be real in any sense.

    Both of these early civilian-run UFO investigatory organizations, in a misbegotten bias to appear both objective and scientifically-inclined, and to appeal to a broader demographic of the public and both members of their organizations, or potential members, simply did not include landed UFOs, close encounters, or entity encounters because they considered such reports as either hoaxes, delusional, or simply impossible, as did most of the US goverment project personnel in charge of Projects Grudge, Blue Book, White Stork, etc. It simply could not be, so therefore it wasn’t, and the historical records reflect this intentional oversight and sub-rosa bias.

    Therefore, the number of reported incidents, including multiple-witness cases, where very non-humanoid entities were allegedly observed are today a relative minority as a result.

    However, entities including robotic figures, probe-like objects, blob-like or protoplasm-like amorphous entities, and entities that took on differing morphologies within single incidents, or seemed able to take on variable forms, are still today both under-reported and generally considered more dubious than humanoid reports by comparison.

    Ask yourself why that might be.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Part 2 of 3:

    I ask, is that due to anthropocentric bias? Or that some entities know and use the human or humanoid shape and form for purposes of verisimilitude, a degree of conceived familiarity, or other reasons that relate to our perceptual and mental frameworks and interpretive needs and biases?

    The Voronezh, Pascagoula, Hopkinsville, and numerous other cases reported giants, robotic figures, and non-humanoid morphologies, although many of them vaguely appeared to have a bilateral symmetry and rudiments of human physiognomy.

    Yet other cases, little known or investigated, report things that appeared to act with purpose and intent, and react to observation, or interact in some ways with witnesses, and that were distinctly non-humanoid in any way.

    So, again, the question that needs to be asked, whether one is contemplating ancient gods, extraterrestrials, or other non-human forms of intelligence that have been seen over time and across all cultures, is whether we can really say there is a uniform typology or form of entity that one could or can distinguish as either real or simply psychologically acceptable, both to the witnesses and those they report their sightings to, and who subsequently judge for themselves just how valid or not such sighted entities may be on the basis of whether they fit presumed categories or common beliefs of what the morphology of such entities should be, not necessarily what is actually and objectively reported.

    There seems to be an inherent human filter or screening process applied to cases that either do not fit the “norm” or have elements of such “high strangeness” that they tend to be rejected, at least in part, out of hand, due to the bias of either the witness, or more likely, the investigators involved in such cases.

    The real, lengthy history of the UFO phenomenon and related entities suggests that there is more going on and more and different kinds of encounters and non-human beings observed than most might otherwise think or believe, due to the distortion and inhibition of researchers with inherent confirmation biases operating and an almost subconscious gauging of what kinds of cases will be considered either valid or acceptable. However, that filter or restriction on reported cases, which has a lengthy history itself, does not either rule out non-humanoid entities or, more specifically, entities that may be able to take on human or humanoid forms for some of the reasons I outlined above.

    We are dealing with something that has absurdity, plausible deniability, camouflage, ambiguity, evolving and trans-mutating morphology of both UFOs and related entities, and a very elusive, covert, and seemingly deliberate shifting and ever-changing nature, somewhat like the ancient American Indian legends of the trickster, or "skinwalking" shape-shifter.

    There are some very useful and definite advantages to being able to appear in various guises and forms, if for no other reason than to create a lack of a definite or even clearly definable pattern of appearance and encounter.

    Humans, like most higher animals, are quite good at pattern recognition. It could even be said we are pattern recognition entities ourselves, and that such faculties are based on evolution and survival instincts honed over hundreds of thousands of years as anthropoids with a little extra intelligence and perceptual acuity given our origins on the plains and forests of Africa.

    What strategy would work best in creating a scenario where our inherent intelligence and perception of pattern recognitions might be confused and lead to great ambiguity and conscious deniability?

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Part 3 of 3:

    I suggest creating both patterns, which change and are different over time and within differing cultures, or co-evolve with our own capabilities, but always at least a bit in advance of our intellect, and combine that strategy (if there even is one) with the synthesis and display of anti-patterns or anomalies that create a diffuse and difficult, if not impossible to discern clearly, admixture of appearances, behaviors, beings, “displays,” and other artifacts of such bewildering variety that the presence, origins, nature, and possible intent of any such non-human entity, or more than one, remains both indistinguishable from magic, as Arthur C. Clarke famously noted, and thus, logically more likely to operate on a subconscious and belief-driven basis than one objective science and rational empiricists would consider worthy or able to be better defined or studied. And what do you think we have today? We live within this enfolded and perplexing matrix.

    I would argue that we have exactly what we have been permitted or are able to know, which is not much, and that what has been “signified” is bounded by disinformation, distortion, and diversionary impetus, to possibly serve as a means to an end, and which may be to make a certain degree or kind of non-human intelligence or presence to be injected or absorbed by a kind of cultural osmosis into our general world-views, but of a kind and nature that also serves to both obscure and camouflage itself while still having a long-term societal and cultural effect that is not clearly understood or perceived, and is most often misinterpreted and manipulated by ourselves and possibly “the others” to be self-denying while simultaneously suggestive of some elements of reality, or implicate "presence of the other," as such evidence is usually treated or understood, and that this interactive process overall may serve distinct and quite subtle, but effective, purposes and intent. Of course, I could also be completely wrong.

    This opinion, expressed here, may illustrate my own biases or misinterpretation. But, for anyone who’s had a close encounter, or who has seriously studied the field over time, done field investigation, and investigated and analyzed both modern incidents and the history of ufology, you cannot say that nothing is really going on, or that it is all simply a psychosocial phenomenon, as the evidence, as varied and misleading as it may appear, is too broad, long, and deep to deny as merely an aspect of human consciousness alone.

    But at least I concede and admit that my perspective or viewpoint about this subject may also be distorted and misconceived.

    Perhaps all of our various scenarios are skewed and "designed" to mislead ourselves down labyrinthine tunnels and mazes once we step down into the rabbit hole that is UFO research and investigation.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Postscript:

    The truth, to paraphrase J.B.S. Haldane, may not only be stranger than we know, but stranger than we can know. But, we cannot help but try to resolve and reconcile this kind of "cognitive dissonance," as it is part of human nature.

    However, it is up to us, or those so interested in doing so, to try to find out, and push on the parameters of the envelope, or attempt to break through them, if for no other reason than to help determine the actual parameters we may be operating within, ala Vallee's "control system" supposition, and to thus find and examine the basis and nature of our limits in exploring these esoteric matters. To me, this is truly part of the scientific method and a personal motivation.

    Lastly, there has been too much peripheral evidence, such as radar, photo, ground trace, and other external, technological sensor system detection and recordings made to suggest this is all simply in our minds. Something is definitely happening, externally, and beyond our fears and dreams.

    Just what it all is, or may be, however, due to what I’ve posited above are the means and processes possibly involved in creating the situation we are presently confronted with, is still a vast unknown, but very real in any sense you’d care to define it.

    We simply do not know, as yet. Nor, I suspect, are we meant to, as yet, and for a very long time to come, the answer to the penultimate question of whether UFOs and related encounters with any kind of entities can be found to establish proof of any form of advanced non-human intelligence (at least, so far). I hope I'm wrong about this last point, FWIW.

    Your mileage may vary, but that is my take on the “estimate of the situation,” for what it’s worth, and IMHO. While frustrating, it is also a fantastic journey and worthwile endeavor from a Zen-like perspective, I personally believe. 8^}

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Steve:

    You're making too much of this, and are immersed in (relatively) current sightings of entities.

    My point was that the mythical and religious entities were not grotesque or disgusting; they were viewed in awe mostly and come down to us as god-like, angelic (as messengers), and in other ways that differ from the pantheon of entities sighted nearby UFOs in the 50s and 60s.

    That's my point.

    You seem to feel that the changeable "thing" morphs to meet our human expectations or to make way for some long-range alien conspiracy -- a typical Science Fiction scenario.

    You may be right, but your view is, to my way of thinking, obtuse and a stretch.

    The early "visitors" were divine, human-like entities.

    The UFO beings, of the 1950s and 1960s were pesky, little things that morphed into the "grays" after the Betty/Barney Hill story.

    (UFOs don't seem to contain entities nowadays, a subject we've covered here in a previous post.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • "The early "visitors" were divine, human-like entities.

    The UFO beings, of the 1950s and 1960s were pesky, little things that morphed into the "grays" after the Betty/Barney Hill story."

    I take it the Space Brothers (and Sisters) are off the table.

    The provenance of (pre)historical figures of "little things" would have to be established, and that is often guesswork, often good guesswork, but still...

    Consider the first image in your article. Can you determine it is a figure of a "little thing"? It might be a giant.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Don:

    I just liked that (first) image.

    It was an "artistic" decision to use it.

    I'd sure like to get some input about early mythologies, rather than the offshooted asides that you fellows seem destined to pursue.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • And Don...

    I don't want to impute the mind-set of Adamski, Bethurum and their ilk to that of the early chroniclers of "visitations" by the gods.

    The imagined creations (Space Brothers/Sisters) of Adamski and others were a concoction, whereas many flying saucer sightings of the 1950s, where beings are included, appear to be authentic, insofar as one can count on witness testimony about such things.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • "I'd sure like to get some input about early mythologies, rather than the offshooted asides that you fellows seem destined to pursue."

    Then what do you mean by "early mythologies"? I'm guessing you mean in written language, which might be why you start with Sumer.

    Why not present something yourself for discussion? I don't care to flail around attempting to guess what's on-topic and what's not.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Don:

    Isn't the original posting enough to spur some cogent ramblings from others; others who are well-read and have some input from their readings that pertain?

    Tweaking my nonsense with oblique references to it doesn't take us anywhere.

    But some non-Wikipedia material from scholars that you fellows have read or know about would be helpful to an intellectual discussion.

    And I wasn't picking on you Don, but my pique just ended up in a comment where I was responding to one of your points.

    Are there, for instance, mythologies and religious texts that present material which is similar to some of the 50s' alien sightings?

    Are there flying saucer incidents that are remarkably like the early texts I mention?

    (And I'm excluding the Space Brothers scenarios which are derivative or phony.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • "Are there flying saucer incidents that are remarkably like the early texts I mention?"

    Well, ya got me there--since UFO incidents or reports going back a few thousand years are at best apocryphal, given the dearth of documentation even in the form of Sumerian clay tablets or Egyptian hieroglyphic papyrus or inscribed friezes, for example, and although you don't seem to give Vallee much credit, you might want to pick up "Wonders in the Sky." by Vallee and Aubeck, for a historical overview of UFO-related incidents recorded between a few thousand years ago up until 1879 for a start.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Steve:

    Wonders in the Sky is in my Amazon cart.

    While I like Vallee, I find his affection for things amorphous rather than tangible a bit offputting.

    I'm from the school of thought that thinks the writings and art by early observers is about actual things they encountered, and noted as best they could.

    Vallee is, like you (I assume) of the thinking that someone or some things is playing around with the mind of mankind.

    To what purpose? Who knows.

    And why is that supposed plan by the instigators of such things as gods, UFOs, et al. taking so long to be brought to fruition?

    Unless we are dealing with a maniac, ultimate force or entity that can be called God.

    But, as usual, I digress...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • "Are there, for instance, mythologies and religious texts that present material which is similar to some of the 50s' alien sightings?"

    Can you list a few of the ufo cases you think present critters that might be 'callbacks' to old material? For me, 'old material' means images rather than texts (images and text are ok. I'm a visual guy...photography). I've got a few titles on the shelf here with a lot of ancient images, and it is something I've studied as part of my interest in the image, no matter the medium used.

    The first image in your article is from eastern Europe, made around 5,000-4,000. Note the mask, a common feature from then and there. The human face, if it is a human, is hidden. Another common feature. Note the limbs, especially the legs. Another common feature, like a toad, frog, or insect -- critters (along with birds and snakes) which many of the masks represent.

    Further south, the masks disappear and the figures become amalgams of the human and the animal, for example the Ubaid reptilian madonna and child.

    What I am saying is that it appears the figures up to the Sumerian are defnitely naturally earthly and have a strong element of the human (but not the facial identity, the individual) mixed with the animal one way or another.

    Humans have been using helmets and masks for a long, long time. So, we need to establish some criteria and provenance in order to address the issue.

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • Don:

    I don't see any (modern) flying saucer sightings that mimic the mythologies of old.

    Nor do I see any mythologies that mimic the saucer sightings of the modern era, as far as beings are concerned.

    The grays and dwarves don't show up in the old tales and accounts, (excepting the wee people tales) and modern sightings don't have gods or heroic entities in them, the Space Brothers aside, as I've noted.

    Vallee's book, that Steve recommends, doesn't seem to help here, as it concentrates on UFOs with entities falling into Vallee's category of "mystical" personages.

    The flesh and blood elements of Homer's Iliad, for instance, mitigate against the Vallee belief that entities are psychical constructs beholden to the culture of the time in which they were recorded or acknowledged.

    There is something tangible about the early visitor accounts, whether they are Lot's angels/God or Homer's Zeus.

    And the creatures of the 1950s and 1960s UFO accounts don't come close to mimicking any of the early stories.

    Why not?

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 15, 2011  

  • re: modern accounts similar to ancient encounters.

    Vallee's book Dimensions contains numerous incidents of this kind. in 'The Case of the Oxford Scorpion-Man' he details the experience of a woman in 1968. She and a companion saw a huge shining disk above the road they were travelling on , which disappeared behind some trees. During the remaining part of the drive, she had 'novel insights into what i can only describe as the Nature of Reality', leading to a long-term personality change. That night, after reaching her destination, she saw a 'demon, or devil'. Like Pan, it had dog or goat-like legs. It was covered in silky, downy fur, dark, and glinting in the light. It was unmistakably humanoid, and to my mind malevolent'.

    She brought this experience to Vallee's attention after attending a lecture/slide show he gave. As she put it, 'I was surprised by one of the slides of a Phoenician seal showing a winged sphere held up by two creatures which (Valle) describes as "Scorpion men". Perhaps I have seen such a man myself....'

    you'll also notice that this woman finds this creature non-angelic and unattractive. And he appeared to be flesh and blood to her - he didn't disappear or perform any actions beyond Newtoninan physics (besides existing, i suppose). Many Greek gods, for instance, were not considered attractive or were even found monstrous - Hephaestus was crippled, Pan was half-goat, Hecate was often depicted as an old, haggard woman.

    Ancient Meso and South American Gods often took just atrocious forms: Aztec Goddess CIHUACOATYL "...was sometimes depicted as a young woman, similar to Xochiquetzal, (but) she is more often shown as a fierce skull-faced old woman carrying the spears and shield of a warrior." also she was :"...thought to haunt crossroads at night to steal children." hmmm. from here: http://www.crystalinks.com/aztecgods.html

    more: "(Coatlicue) is represented as a woman wearing a skirt of writhing snakes and a necklace made of human hearts, hands and skulls. Her feet and hands are adorned with claws (for digging graves) and her breasts are depicted as hanging flaccid from nursing. Coatlicue keeps on her chest the hands, hearts and skulls of her children so they can be purified in their mother's chest."

    You mite want to take a look at Valee's Confrontations if you're interested in concrete, tangible stuff....plenty of it there, very concise.

    steph

    By Blogger tinyjunco, at Wednesday, March 16, 2011  

  • Thanks, Steph...

    We have the books you mention and we also know that some "gods" of he ancients were depicted in hideous form.

    But we want to note that no "gods" or heroes were depicted in ancient texts or drawings like the dwarves of the 50s flying saucer sightings and none like the alleged "grays" that have emerged as the iconic beings piloting UFOs since Betty and Barney Hill's story became ubiquitous.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, March 16, 2011  

  • hi RR! thank you for your response. i'm getting a little muddled on what you're trying to get at in this post, though -

    "In mythology and religious-oriented works, the visitors of old were manifested by an aura that bespoke something otherworldly but not grotesque."

    vs.

    "...we also know that some "gods" of he ancients were depicted in hideous form."

    also "But we want to note that no "gods" or heroes were depicted in ancient texts or drawings like the dwarves of the 50s flying saucer sightings and none like the alleged "grays" that have emerged as the iconic beings piloting UFOs since Betty and Barney Hill's story became ubiquitous."

    there are numreous ancient depictions of gnomes, dwarves, etc. ( for example http://tinyurl.com/4t3kn7m ) - also, i don't understand why you're drawing a line at 'gods/heroes' as opposed to just 'beings'.

    anyways, interesting discussion here! thanks, steph

    By Blogger tinyjunco, at Wednesday, March 16, 2011  

  • Steph:

    In the ancient tales, I can find no depictions (or drawings) that exactly emulate the alleged gray aliens that intrude upon current UFO sightings.

    And current sightings -- not false sightings -- never have beings that exactly match the descriptions of "beings" in the ancient texts, whether from India, Meso-America, Egypt, Sumeria, Greece, the Norse epics, or the stories in the Hebrew Bible, apocryphal and canon.

    Yes, you cite bizarre creatures and they are numerous but none are associated with aerial craft, except for Ezekiel's.

    I'm just trying to narrow down events, old and new, that have enough detail to be considered similar in nature, in essence as it were.

    Thanks for the notes and your references. They help...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, March 16, 2011  

  • Rich, when I have to look at Kevin Randle's site to see an example of what you are referring to...

    May I suggest the next time you broach the subject you prepare yourself with a half-dozen examples of what you are referring to...something more than the greys and little things?

    Regards,

    Don

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Thursday, March 17, 2011  

  • Thanks, Don...

    Next time I'll try to write my blog posts as if the blog was yours.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, March 17, 2011  

  • Hi! i'm glad you found the refs helpful...."I'm just trying to narrow down events, old and new, that have enough detail to be considered similar in nature, in essence as it were."

    determining what criteria to use to decide what's 'in' and what's 'out' is so very tricky. even Betty Hill's description of the famous 'Jimmy Durante nose' doesn't fit in with the stereotypical little greys spawned by her experience...add on top of that colloquialisms in language, bygone references, different styles and idiosyncrasies in art and it's a true mare's nest.

    not to mention, would 'aliens' consider Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln to be of the same species? or Twiggy and Marilyn Monroe? given all these considerations, i lean towards a more inclusive standard. looking for some ideal of an 'exact' duplication, of something which has a fair amount of variety even in it's current manifestation (Hopkinsvile goblins?) is, to me, very likely to miss some important information.

    good luck! steph

    By Blogger tinyjunco, at Thursday, March 17, 2011  

  • Your point, Steph, about diversity is well-taken.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, March 17, 2011  

  • "She brought this experience to Vallee's attention after attending a lecture/slide show he gave. As she put it, 'I was surprised by one of the slides of a Phoenician seal showing a winged sphere held up by two creatures which (Valle) describes as "Scorpion men". Perhaps I have seen such a man myself....'"

    Scorpion men are most often found in the Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Bablyonian periods, but can be found earlier in the Akkad and Ur III periods. They are attendants of the sun god (thus the disk they support). They guard the Gate of Mount Masu where the sun rises.

    They weren't demons, but protectors against demons. The spells and rituals mention scorpion women, but no such figures have been found.


    Regards,

    Don


    ps

    "Thanks, Don...

    Next time I'll try to write my blog posts as if the blog was yours.

    RR"

    I get identical responses from both you and Kevin Randle.

    I guess, thats ufology!

    I won't bother you (as I don't bother Randle) anymore.

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Friday, March 18, 2011  

  • Don:

    Don't be offended by my (or Kevin's) retort(s).

    "Writers" don't like others presuming to tell them what to input on their pages of writ.

    (My newspaper editors did that all the time which p*ssed me, and others, off.)

    I was reminded of a scene from "Amadeus" where Mozart makes an offer to Salieri (something like yours) and Salieri says, sarcastically, that he would not presume to make such a corrective suggestion.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, March 18, 2011  

  • hi Don! interesting info on the Scorpion Guys - thanks! steph

    By Blogger tinyjunco, at Friday, March 18, 2011  

  • ” The question posed is this…

    ”What happened between 5,000 years ago when the Sumerians pictured their “gods” and the modern era when UFO beings are described? [Intelligent Life in the Universe, Shklovskii/Sagan, Delta, 1966]

    ”That is, why has the intruders’ physiognomy changed?”


    [snip]

    ” There is a mystery in all this, one that is connected in all its aspects by the similarities in the visitations.

    ”The difference lies in how the “visitors” appeared, not in how they acted, but what they looked like.

    ”Are there, or were there, two different classes of beings – some actually gods (or imagined as such) and some actually extraterrestrials (or imagined as such)?

    ”It’s a mystery, either way.”

    --------------------------------------------------

    OK, Rich, you posed the questions, and various commentators here have offered you their views on the issues, most of which you have dismissed or rejected out of hand, such as my 4 part commentary, so I think it's time we turned this around and asked you what you thought, or speculate, some of the answers and reasons for what you ask might be. And no, simply saying "It's a mystery" will not suffice--surely you must have some opinions of your own about how and why what you pose to us, and the questions you raise, might be caused by and/or derive from.

    Or else what is the basis for your dismissal of others opinions here other than having a generic difference of opinion--the implication is you have different, unexpressed ideas about the potential answers.

    I'd really be interested to see what your opinion, as speculative as it may be, might be in response to the questions you ask.

    Seriously--what do you think?

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Sunday, March 20, 2011  

  • Steve:

    If I were ignoring comments here, such as yours, they wouldn't even appear on the blog.

    Your views are always interesting, as are Don's and others.

    I let the comments stand on their own, for others to see, others who might be enlightened by them.

    The "mystery" remains, despite your conjectures, or Don's or mine.

    No comments, or hypotheses, settle anything when it comes to UFOs and related topics.

    (See Nick Redfern's remarks here about that, with which Paul Kimball and I agree.)

    You are a guy who likes a good debate, and I'd like to accomodate you, but the matter is only a curiosity for me.

    I'm trying to wean myself from UFOs and the smarties who have corrupted the topic with bullying and presumptions that are loony.

    If I had some substantial conjecture about the topic -- aliens, then and now -- I'd have posted that instead of what you find here.

    For me it remains a mystery, and no one, not even you with your erudition on the subject, has provided, for me, an answer that resonates.

    Sorry...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, March 20, 2011  

  • Part 1 of 5:

    Rich, you seem to be contradicting the premise of iconoclasm by accepting or believing in a form of literal dogmatism over the question of the physical appearances being different between ancient “gods” and modern “aliens.”

    Essentially, I surmise that the differences in appearance are an artifact of and modified by human belief, perception, understanding, and revisionist cultural and historical factors down through the ages, personally.

    And that, as Vallee spoke of over 35 years ago, UFOs and related “alien” beings, their appearance, behavior, and presumed purpose or intent, are a modern myth in the making, just like so many older ones, but with a kind of faux scientism applied for increased legitmacy or supposedly genuine, literal interpretation of physical appearances.

    I think the questions you raise are fairly direct, and important, but from an ambiguously simplistic POV, and seemingly based in some kind of dogmatic belief, which contradicts an iconoclastic viewpoint, ironically.

    For you to say, "You are a guy who likes a good debate, and I'd like to accomodate you, but the matter is only a curiosity for me.

    "I'm trying to wean myself from UFOs and the smarties who have corrupted the topic with bullying and presumptions that are loony,"

    seems intentionally provocative.

    I will take one final crack at the questions and provide my own interpretation of the actual issues once again, and then be done with it, as I suspect no further progress can be made here about these matters.

    I think the some of the best, prospective answers to your questions have in fact been provided, in various forms here, but that for whatever reason, you simply disagree and consider the archetypes of gods, ET’s, and assorted other mythological, non-human entities, and the evolution of same in appearance over time, to be a mystery that seems insoluable.

    But I suspect that interpretation reflects either your own bias or first-level interpretation of the facts, not that there are not some quite credible answers to the questions you pose.

    First, you have stated in your post and in comments a kind of literal-mindedness, that you accept that the earliest pictorial representations and ancient texts written by men in early times are accurate in terms of real beings and/or events.

    That is a presumption, and not borne out by historical records or the cultural effects on mythological beliefs that evolve over time.

    I read the comments that Bruce Duensing provided in your earlier post on this, from 2007, that you link to, and observe the same kind of argumentation and facile rejection of the more subtle interpretations and suggestions Bruce made there four years ago.

    Likewise, if you read closely what Kandinsky, JR, Sourcerer, tinyjunco, and others here have said several times now in varying ways to try to explicate their views, which you again seem to generally disagree with, I think the real question that should be asked, as I did (and you demurred from directly responding to), is what is your more literal interpretation based upon?

    Unfortunately, I don’t think you either will or perhaps can respond to that direct question of your basis for belief, without which it’s rather difficult to debate or discuss contrary views coherently.

    Most of the other commentators here have suggested in the main that perhaps your two primary questions draw an unsubstantiated, sub-rosa claim or contention, that in effect you assert that the beings described thousands of years ago were not just human in nature, but as a reflection of their presumed “godhood,” were super-human in nature, but with a very clearly and closely defined physiognomy of humans, just on some ambiguous elevated plane of existence, and how you are perplexed as to why the dissimilar kinds of non-human but humanoid beings seen since the 50’s and 60’s have such a different appearance, as little, gray, large-headed and large-eyed beings with either uncertain or negative behavioral qualities.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Part 2 of 5:

    This, to me, and implied or stated directly here by other commentators, is a kind of false dichotomy, or dualistic interpretation without sufficiently factual data or basis.

    It is a belief of some kind, but without explanation or detailed elucidation. But why pose the questions in the first place, if you are trying to remove yourself from ufological issues and debate—surely you must have known your provocative post would raise these reactions and comments that differ from your own, whether you explain or elucidate them, or not, as you seemingly have chosen to do.

    And saying, "If I had some substantial conjecture about the topic -- aliens, then and now -- I'd have posted that instead of what you find here.

    "For me it remains a mystery, and no one, not even you with your erudition on the subject, has provided, for me, an answer that resonates.

    "Sorry..."
    still raises the question of just why that is so.

    In other words, why do you draw this distinction in the first place, as if it’s a valid mystery, not explainable by factors recognized quite readily by most as derived from cultural overlay, the beliefs of each time and place cited, and the evolution, erosion, and reinterpretation of these legends as reflections and recreations of the elites and priesthoods of those times and cultures world-wide in ancient days that in many if not most cases were not taken literately even then, but were more usually considered apocryphal, as guides to ideals, goals, and a sense of place and identity as humans in a world which was on an objective and scientific basis, poorly understood?

    What has been said here in many different ways is that to assume that the ancient Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian, Egyptian, or pre-Christian Hebrew texts and pictorial representations of their various “gods” cannot and should not be taken as objective or as literally portrayed. For example, all you have to do is look at how the King James version of the Bible came about, and even earlier, how the First Council of Nicaea (325 AD) and the Second Council of Nicaea, also known as the Seventh Ecumenical Council (787 AD), which were essentially convocations or large committees of early Roman Catholic bishops, Eastern Orthodox, and various other Western Christian groups, under the aegis and sponsorship of the respective Roman emporer (Constantine I) and later Byzantine regents (for the first and second councils) decided which parts of the early Christian texts, gospels, and Hebrew predecessor records would be incorporated into the early Christian Bible, and which were also to be excluded, like the gospel of St. Thomas, for one pertinent example.

    Elementary to this process of revisionist consolidation each time, and over numerous iterations both before, between, and after these primary councils, were the issues of (in the first council) the relationship of Jesus to God the Father, the construction of the first part of the Nicene Creed, which was the promulgation of the first uniform Christian doctrine, settling the calculation of the date of Easter, and promulgation of early canon law.

    The second Council of Nicaea, intiguingly enough, is primarily known for reversing the earlier belief that religious icons were blasphemous, and should be destroyed, hence the word “iconoclast,” or someone who performs iconoclasm — destruction of religious symbols, or, by extension, established dogma or conventions.

    [You know, like naming a blog “The UFO Iconoclasts,” the implications of which are that the literal belief or worship of icons, or pictorial representations of diety or religious figures, or worship of religious relics, artifacts, and visual representations, or other forms of dogma, such as about UFOs and standard mainstream ETH “nuts and bolts” interpretations or reported appearances of aliens should be challenged, revised, destroyed, or otherwise refuted. 8^}]

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Part 3 of 5:

    This relates to the 1000 BCE revelations allegedly given by God to Moses when he supposedly spent 40 days and nights atop Mt. Sinai and was given the Ten Commandments in the form of stone tablets, and which listed as the fourth commandment that “You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.”

    While that was a consequence, according to early Christian or Hebrew lore, of the creation of a golden idol of a calf to which animal sacrifices were made while Moses was strolling around Mt. Sinai for awhile, it came to include even Christian religious icons, or pictorial representations of Jesus, God, or other saints, or relics thereof, between the first and second councils of Nicaea. Since the second council, veneration of icons and other religious relics has been deemed OK. In Islam, OTH, it is not. Go figure... 8^}

    So, what does all of this arcane history have to do with the matters at hand? Two things:

    1) This illustrates, as just one example, the manner and reasons why any set of beliefs, including how they are literally portrayed, are subject to massive, idiosyncratic human manipulation, selectivity, exclusion, and synthesis for worldly, human reasons, and,

    2) Just that it seems more than a bit ironic that a literal interpretation of the appearance of early gods as real, or the modern era’s equally literal interpretation by some of the differing appearance of aliens, seems to be of significance in this debate, when in fact the primary issue is not that at all, but whether either first-level interpretations of the appearance of either ancient gods or the aliens of modern times can be really be taken as either literal or true in their variant physiognomies, and which ignores or dismisses the central reality or basis for both, which is that humanity has always created and shaped the appearances of both to suit their various political, cultural, and religious precepts and beliefs in all times, not that one should think or believe that the differences in appearance are to be taken or assumed to be literally true—they are not.

    That is the essential contradiction involved in this discussion, and which you, Rich, seem to be overlooking quite assiduously.

    It is a cultural phenomenon, based in revisionist historical beliefs, and ever-evolving human needs and wants that shape the presumed appearances of our gods, demons, and ET, not literal fact.

    That is why I, among others here, proposed some alternative ways of viewing this phenomenon, and the wildly variant morphologies and appearances of both the ancient gods and modern non-human entities, whether you want to call them aliens, cryptos, angels, demons, ghosts, or whatever.

    The fact is there is no uniformity of non-human entities, god-like or not, throughout history. Look at the religious iconography of Tibetan Buddhism, for example—there are numerous monstrous, negative entities portrayed, as is the case in both Islam and Hinduism in centuries past, in addition to Christianity’s demons, goblins, etc.

    We have to look at the whole picture, as it were, not just the “good gods” of ancient Greece or Western/European antecedents. To not do so is itself a form of cultural bias or intentional selectivity and exclusion of other portrayals and codified entities of a negative form. There’s God, and then there’s the Devil. And the devil is in the factual details. Yin and yang, metaphorically speaking, apply, although that too is human dualism and artificial dichotomy, for the most part.

    The supposition that is based in an objectively literal definition or visual interpretation that something significant and yet unexplainable occurred between ancient times and now in the perceived appearance of non-human beings, regardless or source, origin, or nature, is misbegotten, and a presumption based upon bias and belief, or misinterpretation, itself, in my opinion.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Part 4 of 5:

    Naturally, you may disagree, but the consensus of most who have both studied the ancient texts, pictorial representations, and in relation to modern UFO phenomenology and related alleged non-human beings over the last few hundred years, particularly over the last 100 years [or, especially, the last 40 to 50 years, since the Betty and Barney Hill case in 1961, and even earlier, in 1957, the real precedent, the Antonio Villas Boas case in South America, as likely invented or mythic in origins as the Boas case is], suggest that, overall, this history from pre-literate times going back over 6000 years ago up to today represents more than anything, a continuum of human belief, imagination, creativity, and manipulation and synthesis of all of these supposed “beings” as being human, humanoid, or of other somewhat humanoid appearance (in the sense of having bilateral symmetry, and a head, arms, legs, and body, with mouths, ears, and eyes of one sort or another) is largely a human projection.

    The human or humanoid iconography of representations of gods, or simply “all the ‘others’” is so common thoughout history as to raise the question of just why and how that is, itself, as a better question to be asked, rather than dwelling on the particular differences between one culture or era and others.

    The humanoid archetype or uniformity, to me, is a metaphor, or analogy, and not to be taken as either factual or real in a literal sense, except as hypothesized above, where it may serve other purposes and be itself created or synthesized, by both man and the possible “other,” for the reasons discussed previously.

    I am simply suggesting, positing, and speculating that given the huge effect and influence of human belief, religion, culture, and political constraints, that the imagery of both ancient gods, angels and devils, demonic creatures, alien beings, etc., etc., cannot and should not be taken in any literal fashion, or used as a basis to draw comparisons or question why the literal interpretations have been different from one era to another, or from one culture to another.

    The reasons why I think this have been elucidated here fairly clearly, by several, and everyone is entitled to their beliefs or to interpret this data as they will anyway, for the most part, due to these concepts being a form of ideology, not reality, or personal interpretation dependent on what one thinks is real (their background and education, the beliefs of their parents and peers inculcated into their perspectives, and the ways and means of seeing, thinking, and understanding, or their very identity), and which is extraordinarily difficult to even be seriously reconsidered, let alone modified or changed significantly, for all sorts of emotional, cultural, and psychological reasons.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Part 5 of 5:

    So, believe what you want, as we all will anyway, but understand in turn that if you do not or cannot elucidate the basis or reasons for that belief, and simply term it a mystery, but real, that may be more a reflection of one’s limited ability to see or reevaluate, given the facts outlined here and in other commenators remarks, that the actual questions are somewhat different, and have nothing to do with literal physical differences in appearance, but everything to do with how we perceive, understand, project, and create our own personal ideologies and beliefs.

    Or, possibly, how “the other” may use that same human impetus and perceptual or mental constraints for similar, obscuratory purposes. I do not pose this idea as either “SciFi” or “alien conspiracy” but as simply one of many possible ways of interpreting the data and history of this general phenomenon that stretches back into antiquity.

    So, where you say, "You're making too much of this, and are immersed in (relatively) current sightings of entities," I have to disagree, and my historical references above show that this syndrome of belief is just part of an ancient historical continuum of long standing.

    It seems important to me on the basis that the last 65+ years of UFO and related non-human being sightings, and their varied and evolving physical appearances, are among the very few artifacts or data upon which we can base objective and scientific analysis, or to obtain better data for a more empirical means to better hypotheses, and by also considering the critical human element in all of this.

    I also think, when you say, "You seem to feel that the changeable 'thing' morphs to meet our human expectations or to make way for some long-range alien conspiracy -- a typical Science Fiction scenario.

    "You may be right, but your view is, to my way of thinking, obtuse and a stretch,"
    well, what can one say to that? Rather dismissive.

    At the very least it feels like a misinterpretation of what I've said here. And if it seems "obtuse and a stretch," well, your mileage may vary, as the digerati once used to say. To each their own conceptualizations and hypotheses.

    If that makes me, as Vallee once famously said, “a heretic among heretics,” well, so be it. Nor do I think Vallee has the answers, as he would be the first to concede, other than to suggest the UFO phenomenon and related best case data patterns imply something far more subtle and complex than the simplistic, first-level ETH notion that extraterrestrial, humanoid aliens from other star systems piloting metallic spacecraft are perpetually visiting Earth, which he surmises is not the case, although, somewhat ambiguously, he also does not reject the ETH, only he interprets it quite differently than most ufologists.

    Hell, to Vallee, in the conversations I’ve had with him in the past 15 years or so, where we have discussed the potential extrapolations from some of his opinions on these matters, I most probably seem like a "heretic" to him!

    But, as Mahatma Gandhi was once apocryphally said to have written, “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” Maybe. Maybe not. It all depends on what you can prove.

    At least we should try to find out the truth, regardless of what it may be, or what we may presume otherwise. That’s what matters—reality, and the search for truth, not belief.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Steve,

    I hesitate to bring up hubris here, however....

    Paul Kimball, Nick Redfern, and others, including me, think that there are some things in life that shall remain mysteries; for instance, the nature of God, the meaning of life itself, quantum mechanics, UFOs, and the real essence of beings and creatures seen and reported for millennia.

    You think, if I read you correctly, that the "aliens" I brought to the fore in this post, are somne kind of visual or real aspect thrust upon reality by something or someone to make some kind of point.

    Vallee (and you, apparently) think your hypothetical musings have the patina of concreteness; that is, your ruminations have more validity than my view that what was seen and recorded, then and now, is what it is -- a rather accurate account of what the persons recording experienced, modified by the flaws in human witnessing.

    Piling rumination upon rumination, in five comments doesn't make an argument all by itself.

    Just as string theory rests upon unproved conjecture, so to does your slathering of the convoluted blunders you cite (the early Christian mish-mash to accomodate Constantine's political machinations for instance).

    I know there is a frustration among UFO mavens because they are not recognized as intellectual or scientific, and they wish to create the image that they are by forcing elaborate interpretations (most of them loony) upon things that may be just as simple as they seem.

    Duensing does this to some extent, but is brilliant in his waywardness.

    You try to do the same, as does Vallee -- you are in good company.

    But I accept what has been recorded, with the caveat of human witnessing in mind, and think to provide interpretation that creates scenarios that reflect biases (not understood by the new interpretors) is hubristic, and time-wasting, intellectually.

    You've provided a litany of supposition that is, perhaps, interesting, but doesn't ring any significant bells with me.

    Again, sorry...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Oh, and Steve...

    We place comments online here as soon as we get them.

    And I reply immediately.

    Commenting several days after you read one of my posts or comments lets the discussion cool off and dry out.

    If you need a few days to gather your thoughts, I understand.

    But some of us move on, rather quickly, to other pastures, as you can see from the intervening posts above.

    Delayed response merely mugs an argument.

    He who hesitates is lost, as they say....

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • "If you need a few days to gather your thoughts, I understand.

    "But some of us move on, rather quickly, to other pastures, as you can see from the intervening posts above.

    "Delayed response merely mugs an argument.

    "He who hesitates is lost, as they say...."

    ----------------------------------------------------

    Hmmmm.... Well, as the "banal" phrase goes (your reference to Paul Kimball's use thereof), again, we shall have to, as the refined gentlemen we most assuredly must be, have to "agree to disagree." Again.

    I guess I will have to prove my contentions in no uncertain way. Interesting intellectual challenge.

    But I think you are forgetting how history is made, and how ancient history and records are both fragmentary and incomplete, at best. Thought I made that point pretty darn clear, personally.

    Oh, and Rich? There are just so many things I could say in response to your two comments above, among others previously, but I think you deserve a carefully crafted, less verbose, and direct, succinct response, or two, given what you have opined about, and how and why, here.

    But, let's cut the unsubtle ad hominems, OK, both of us, from here on out, if we can, and if so, I suspect this debate will be far more productive and yield more light than the smokey obscurity generated up to this point, agreed?

    I do have other priorities, and have to work over the next day or two, but rest assured (you're not in any real big hurry, are you?) I will back then, soonest, to provide you with my studious and factual rejoinder.

    Sadly, I guess you'll just have to wait until I have a few free moments to comment further. **Sigh** -- "Parting is such sweet sorrow." Heh!

    But, I would like to ask, do you know of any first-hand, witness accounts deriving from 2000 or more years ago, actually recorded or written about by the witness(es) themselves, of any incident or encounter with any "gods" or other anomalous, potentially intelligent and non-human entities, still extant and documented today? Seriously.

    I'd be real curious and intrigued if you could provide even one, or a few, authenticated or genuine account(s) like that. Hmmmmm....?

    Until then.... 'til the morrow! 8^}

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • Steve,

    Since you persist in throwing down a gauntlet, I'll come up with a new posting, dealing with the "authentication" you'd like to see.

    As for "agreeing to disagree" -- that bromide makes me sick, as you intuit.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, March 22, 2011  

  • "Since you persist in throwing down a gauntlet, I'll come up with a new posting, dealing with the 'authentication' you'd like to see."

    Well, great! Although I didn't think I was throwing down any "gauntlet," per se. Would that be from Medieval times or the Renaissance era? I'd just like to see some specific documentation, original pictorial representations, and otherwise the kind of datum and sourcing you would expect from anyone, myself included, in this debate.

    So I really do think this is progress, of a sort, and I look forward to reading that impending blog post as soon as you can produce it, but take your time, as I'd like to respond in kind as carefully and in as much detail as I hope your post will be. I have faith! 8^}

    Seriously, this is a very interesting issue to me, and I suspect you also, as Vallee has pointed out in regard to evolving and morphing UFO forms and shapes observed over time, the parallel and perhaps even more potentially significant matter of just how and why the greatly variant and changing (between ancient and modern times) physical appearance of differing "non-human" entities is one of the few observable clues we may have to help parse and analyze these quite anomalous phenomena.

    So, in a collegial spirit, let's both see what we can do, to best present our cases about the differences and potential parallels between and within our personal speculations on these matters.

    Authentication and empirical evidence is indeed the name of the game afoot. Maybe we'll both learn something from each other. But, again, lets not allow "Professor Moriarty" to metaphorically intrude upon our various and sundry forensic and deductive ruminations. Let's keep it clean, and classy.

    I guess I'll have to find or invent some alternative to "agree to disagree" cliche, also--I'm kind of tired it too--doesn't quite capture the essence of what I think we're both, from alternative perspectives, really after in this analytical process, which should be the facts and the "truth," as best as we can present it for mutual consideration. Or something.


    Hmmmmm.... if it quacks like a duck, and.....no, that's not it. Sorry.

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Wednesday, March 23, 2011  

  • Steve,

    You're cute and smart, surely.

    But you seem anxious for someone to supplment your interest(s) while they let theirs slide.

    I'll be glad to provide some supplemental material and have dug out supporting items.

    However, I (and others here) have other interests and "duties" and really are not as absorbed in the debate we've created, hoping that those who are intrigued by the insights of Vallee and others will search out the information on their own, rather than hope we'll do that for them.

    (I had this plaint at UpDates years ago, when listers there wanted me to provide content even after I gave them the source and links for the things I mentioned.)

    A fellow I worked with during my stint in The Legion of Mary told me once that "The world is in a conspiracy to waste our time."

    And his observation weighs heavily with me.

    You're not trying to waste my time are you?

    (I get the feeling that you are.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, March 23, 2011  

  • Rich,

    I asked you twice to describe some of the UFO creatures you refer to (besides greys) and you did not. I don't know anything about them, however, on the other side of the equation, I do have 50 years of study of mythological creatures.

    Steph mentioned the Scorpionmen, and that was something to work with.

    For greys, the SE European figures with insect or amphibian limbs and triangular bird masks from around 5500-4000 bce are comparable.

    I don't know why you wouldn't respond with a few examples so that I'd have something to work with.

    It appears you are unable to understand what I asked, and apparently processed it through your ufology filter.

    You can write your own blog.

    adios

    By Blogger Sourcerer, at Wednesday, March 23, 2011  

  • Don:

    There are a number of sites and blogs available to you which provide depictions of UFO beings reported since 1947.

    I included an image of one of those sightings in the blog post here.

    My mode of operation is to evoke interest in a topic, hoping that persons who might be interested will search out content that will flesh out my rumination.

    I am disinclined to go looking for material that fulfills the need or desire of readers here.

    Steve Sawyer and you, both, I find, ask bloggers (Kevin Randle among them) to provide you some content which you could find on your own, should you take the time to do so.

    I don't know why persons interested in UFOs are slackers when it comes to ferreting out information that supposedly interests them.

    As mentioned in a reply of mine (above), I had a to-do with UFO UpDaters who wouldn't go to links or sites that I offered, asking me to post what was at those links or sites for them.

    (One was a government balloon listing of all balloon loftings known to the government -- a huge database that would have required a lot of space at UpDates to recreate there.)

    So, I am not being snotty or aloof about your request.

    I'm just surprised that you don't see my point -- that you need to do the legwork when it comes to finding UFO/flying saucer beings reported in the literature.

    I don't want to do that work for you (or Steve Sawyer when it comes to his requests).

    You know the barb about armchair UFO researchers.

    You fellows are even more dissolute than that "group."

    (And I still luv ya, Don.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, March 23, 2011  

  • "A fellow I worked with during my stint in The Legion of Mary told me once that 'The world is in a conspiracy to waste our time.'

    "And his observation weighs heavily with me.

    "You're not trying to waste my time are you?

    "(I get the feeling that you are.)"


    Well, I'm finally baaaaaaacck from my little interim work sojourn. Pardon my belated response, here.

    Oh, and Rich, you say the funniest things! Cute and smart, eh? I would defer to the latter over the former, all things considered. I would guess you meant "cute" in a non-morphological context, however.

    Am I wasting your time? I guess I could ask you the very same question, Rich. I don't feel I am, but your mileage may vary.

    I'm here to, as seriously as I can, respond to comments and questions about matters that do quite obvioulsy concern me, and I would hope that is your purpose also, although one wonders when you mischaracterize Don and myself by saying things like, "You fellows are even more dissolute than" archair UFO researchers. How would you know, btw?

    In any case, since you are wrong, I know you still "luv" me, regardless, right? But why do you persist in tossing out those recursive "barbs", huh?

    Maybe you can't restrain yourself when you suspect your chain may be being yanked, but that is certainly not the case here, at least from me. It's a bit obsessive, IMHO, but I forgive you the indulgence. 6^}

    In all seriousness, though, the issue this blog post and your newer follow-up (where I will make further, detailed commentary) refer to is quite fascinating, to me, at least.

    The essential questions you asked were twofold: 1) why were the ancient descriptions of the forms of the archetypal "old gods" so human in form, and 2) could there have been or are there two differing forms of advanced non-human intelligence, one just like humans, and the other humanoid, but basically only to a degree, and in some cases very unlike the humanoid stereotypes known of today.

    These are legitmate, interesting questions, and I'll reiterate and add further detail to my revised speculative "answers" in the comment thread of Part II of the "Mystery of the Aliens," later today. See ya' there!

    BTW, Rich, did you know that Malcolm Muggeridge once wrote a two-volume autobiography, cutely entitled "Chronicles of Wasted Time"? That's almost interesting, isn't it? 8^}

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Monday, March 28, 2011  

  • Steve:

    You are always interesting, and full of arcane insights.

    But you do know that I have a newer Mystery of Aliens (above) -- a Part 2 as it were.

    Why not try your hand at what's there?

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, March 28, 2011  

  • To quote myself:

    "...I'll reiterate and add further detail to my revised speculative "answers" in the comment thread of Part II of the "Mystery of the Aliens," later today. See ya' there!"

    8^}

    By Blogger steve sawyer, at Monday, March 28, 2011  

  • Yah, it would be helpful if I read comments more carefully.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, March 28, 2011  

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