The UFO Iconoclast(s)

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

UFOs: Hallucinations and Delusion

Copyright 2011, InterAmerica, Inc.

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That strange “objects” appear and have appeared, to humans, in the sky and on the ground for millennia is a given, an observable truth, as it were.

(Ufologists should abandon their defensive posture; that is, ufologists needn’t continue to try and prove UFOs exist. UFOs are a premised reality. The evidence is palpable and has been verified beyond doubt in any number of ways, and by credible witnesses.)

But what of those “insane” perceptions that Spanish UFO researcher Jose Caravaca provides at his blog, The Caravaca Files or Jacques Vallee has documented in several books and lectures?

Sẽnor Caravaca attributes the bizarre UFO events he lists as a product of witness minds, controlled and used by an alien intrusion, yet to be explicitly defined, for purposes also not explicitly defined, but suggested by sẽnor Caravaca to be an expression of a reality that the intruders wish to display, by their staged images and activities.

Sẽnor Caravaca’s hypothesis is interesting, and defended by his observation that the “mental machinations” he documents aren’t ubiquitous, as they would be if they followed the suggestions offered by some; i.e., electromagnetic effects on the mind (Persinger) and psychic projections by elements of a concomitant spiritual reality that exists with humans (Vallee).

However, one has to consider the idea that some UFO accounts that include strange beings doing equally strange activities are hallucinatory or delusional constructs brought about by an initial event that triggers the images and perceptions recounted.

Still, the initial, triggering event – a UFO sighting or landing – is yet to be explained or understood.

But the descriptive accounts, after the initial event, may be attributable to hallucinations, hallucinations caused by a number of psychological triggers as delineated in papers about how the body and mind reacts to traumatic [sic] encounters and affects:

The Interpretation of Intrusions in Psychosis: An Integrative Cognitive Approach to Hallucinations and Delusions by Anthony P. Morrison (2001)

And, importantly, Visual Hallucinations in Psychologically Normal People: Charles Bonnet’s Syndrome by Robert J. Teunisse, Johan R. Cruysberg, Willibrord H. Hoefnagels, André L. Verbeek, and Frans G. Zitman.

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And:

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The Charles Bonnet Syndrome (CBS) can account for the descriptive renditions that witnesses have provided over the years for what they experienced.

Such descriptions as those of Betty and Barney Hill, Father Gill in Papua (New Guinea), which represents a “mass hullucination” example, the Hickson/Parker Pascagoula incident, and others that you’re familiar with can all be attributable to the “CBS.”

Click HERE for a table of when and during what activity the Bonnet Syndrome takes place.

Applying what we know about psychopathological pathogens helps winnow many UFO events, but not all, unfortunately.

Some UFO experiences can be traced to psychological operations by various rogue constructs in governments and the military as recounted by me in Nick Redfern’s book, Contactees [Chapter 20] and actual “alien” encounters of a still unexplained kind.

(The word “alien” is used here in its psychological context.)

But looking for more exotic explanations for obvious human mental configurations is stretching human fact into contrived fiction which has, as its downside, a loss of premise stability and subsequent logic – resulting in a wayward search for what UFOs are.

Again, UFOs are real, some strange UFO encounters are actual encounters; it’s the descriptive aftermath that has thrown the topic into a disarray that dissuades science from pursuing UFOs as a topic for scrutiny.

Once the psychological parameters are outlined and clarified, science might be able to tackle the phenomenon itself.

One can only hope…

RR

15 Comments:

  • I think the analysis of what constitutes a event or events that do not have any potential to originate from a bio-neurological or a transient abiogensis basis, has yet to be performed although this is cited as an alternative to these causes.

    I think this is the dog chasing it's tail, inasmuch as the data that has been recorded, while provocative is far from objectively conclusive, outside of interpretation of what constitutes evidence, what constitutes misinterpretation, and what measuring protocols are used..

    Luminosity as a measurement of radiant energy, radar returns, ground trace effects all need to be weighed which the Sturrock Panel, etc began and then was left "hanging" as well as the Rockefeller Panel, the Congressional testimony,
    ( I think that was Ford's committee) etc.
    The French research has been probing to no avail..having said all this I think there is no real agreement of what constitutes a misinterpretation of data. To me its a non weighted determination that is more akin to a critical assumption.
    That being said the Illinois, Belgium, and Phoenix events are very consistent, if I had to chose cases, I would choose these.However these are problematic in terms of hard data.
    Here is what I am saying..how do we uncouple neurological and somatic effects of these events are intrinsic to them?
    Presinger is the only one with a science background to take this issue seriously, so we have a problem...separating or uncoupling an intrinsic effect that no one has analyzed by psychological and biological metrics.
    So to say that "aliens" are involved is putting the cart before the horse, that is not to say it's an impossibility, just premature.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • How would you classify the mass sighting in Fatima, Portugal in Oct 1917? Tens of thousands of witnesses, but to what?

    By Blogger cda, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • Christopher:

    As a Catholic, I've always been intrigued by the Fatima "miracle."

    But it is an archetypal case, for me, of mass hysteria.

    Something triggered the hysteria - what that was is still to be explained - but the crowd reaction can be viewed as an hysterical broadside.

    The triggering phenomenon may have been something as mundane or prosaic as a "sundog" or other meteorological anomaly.

    But Mary, the mother of Jesus, surely didn't come to Earth, from the (long) dead) to impart some vague messages to three ragtag kids from the Portucal countryside.

    It's ludicrous on the face of it.

    (I'd respond to Bruce's comments, above, if I had some real inkling of what he's saying.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • I will restate it. If contact with a "UFO" causes neurological and\or biological changes to a witness, how do you separate these effects from it, to the point you can determine their predispositions prior to the event caused them to have a delusion?

    In other words, can a preexisting malady discount the neurological or biological effects of an encounter as a primary or secondary cause of them?

    To what degree? Then there are people who also have biological sensitivities, some do not. This must also be accounted for and weighed in a metric or measurement.

    None of this has been done. More importantly this is difficult and what is to be measured and how is not as easy as it sounds.

    Therefore, I am saying that an alien species being responsible for these delusions is far from a foregone conclusion as some suggest because...these effects has not been studied in these specific terms in order to remove them, therefore leading to a alien hypothesis.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • Bruce:

    The paper on "CBS" stresses that the "hallucinations" occur in normal persons.

    I included that excerpt from the paper.

    Therefore, there are no predispositions to evaluate.

    I have three other academic papers saying the same thing, one cited in my posting above.

    The gist, as I read it, indicates that a "traumatic" event, a startling, out of the ordinary event, can trigger, even in mentally healthy people, a transient hallucination that is neither psychotic in origin or permanent, except as a memory.

    Persinger's thesis, which I think you are covrtly defending, may apply, but is not the prima causa of most events as I noted: The Hills, Reverend Gill, and maybe the Hickson/Parker episode (although where they were in the Pascagoula area could allow for a Persinger explanation, perhaps).

    Just as our colleague Jose Caravaca wishes to see some entities at work in UFO encounters, you want to find physical disturbances that alter one's mentality for a while (I think).

    I prefer the psychological attribution, as that remains, for me, a human factor, a human explanation that eschews little green men, psychical tricksters, or esoteric elements of physics.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • "The paper on "CBS" stresses that the "hallucinations" occur in normal persons.

    I included that excerpt from the paper.

    Therefore, there are no predispositions to evaluate."

    We simply disagree on this one.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • Well, Bruce, I am pleased to note that I'm being disagreed with by an intellectual of the highest order: you.

    I don't dismiss your views out of hand and, again, am being a devil's advocate for my skeptically inclined psychological colleagues in Ann Arbor at the University of Michigan.

    We'll continue the dialogue as the matter is still up for grabs as far as I'm concerned.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • an expression of a reality that the intruders wish to display, by their staged images and activities.


    That the 'intruders' wish to display, or the mind that produced them? If the intruder is a product of mind of the person experiencing the hallucination, then might we not be witnessing the budding of a 'multiple personality'?

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • The gist, as I read it, indicates that a "traumatic" event, a startling, out of the ordinary event, can trigger, even in mentally healthy people, a transient hallucination that is neither psychotic in origin or permanent, except as a memory.

    A friend of mine in College was experimenting with magic mushrooms. While he was 'peaking' on the mushrooms, he saw Lucky the Leprechaun out of the corner of his eye. He followed it across the room, but could never see it 'straight on' -- always out of the corner of the eye.

    I find this rather fascinating, myself. As a Philosopher, I must ask myself where 'Lucky' came from. Was he stored in the psychotic compound, and transmitted through ingestion somehow? I don't think so. The drug obviously triggered a memory of Lucky -- one which pre-existed prior to the ingestion of the mushrooms.

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • Therefore, I am saying that an alien species being responsible for these delusions


    According to the Gnostics, there were 'beings' that were created at the time of the Creation. Those beings exist as a result of the Creation, and were not on Sophia's mind when she made it. Things like Gravity were a sort of 'unintended consequence' of creating Time and Mass.

    These 'beings' are eternal TO the physical realm. But they're not eternal to Sophia.

    Where does 'pi' exist? 3.1415... Or the "Golden Ratio"? These things seem to exist much like Gravity. They're true whether there's a human being there to affirm it or not.

    If we agree that these semi-eternal 'beings' exist, how much of a jump is it to start anthropomorphizing them?

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Wednesday, December 07, 2011  

  • I know you have recommended some very interesting books in the past, and I take the risk of sounded like a one note symphony, but..I have another Persinger book that is a pretty safe bet you would really enjoy, which is "The Weather Matrix and Human Behavior" which was a fascinating and provocative read..that delves into the relations between psychological, biological, weather systems. energy fields, etc and how they can steer "behavior" which would include perception..there is material on the differences between the biology of the mentally "ill" and the rest.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Thursday, December 08, 2011  

  • Bruce:

    I have Persinger's book on my Christmas list.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Thursday, December 08, 2011  

  • "Click HERE for a table of when and during what activity the Bonnet Syndrome takes place."

    File Not Found

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Wednesday, January 04, 2012  

  • P:

    The link is fixed.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Wednesday, January 04, 2012  

  • Oliver Sacks: What hallucination reveals about our minds

    link

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Thursday, January 05, 2012  

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