UFO Conjectures

Friday, April 27, 2012

Caravaca on his Distortion Theory

Jose Caravaca provides an Italian incident that he uses to clarify and expand his Distortion Theory for UFO encounters.

Click HERE to see his latest rendering...


  • Here is an easier hypothesis: The woman was reading a book about Roman soldiers, went to bed, had the appropriate dream, woke up quickly and thought that she saw, in reality, what she had just been dreaming about. I'll just bet that similar things have happened to readers of this blog.

    By Blogger Dominick, at Friday, April 27, 2012  

  • Dominick....

    If this event, were unique, she certainly saw a gladiator movie and dreamed of their encounter.

    But if readers read my reports, will understand that almost all UFO witnesses they had a dream, or should we consider the hypothesis of distortion ....
    or so at least I think ...

    Saludos y gracias

    By Blogger jacarav@ca, at Friday, April 27, 2012  

  • I had several incidents that pertain to Dominick's easier hypothesis although not as dramatic as Jose's example.

    We have one cat out of two, who is an indoor cat and I am always cautious, even paranoiac about his flying out the back door as I always anticipate him to do so.
    Several times, while opening the door, out of the corner of my eye I saw him approach. However, he wasn't there. I had simply imagined by anticipation and my mind filled in the blanks.

    As I mentioned earlier, there is always normal in the paranormal, what Jose is giving example after example of is exactly these relatively rare examples of the mind superimposing stored images which have no purpose in relationship beyond associative and identifying mechanisms that are planted in the prosaic.
    I don't see a direct correlation to "UFO" phenomenon, with the exception that some folks identify this or that associated to them. Connecting the dots.
    This is more of a case of biochemical neurology and the mysteries of imaging and imagination than bored and \ or mischievous aliens.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Friday, April 27, 2012  

  • A further comment:
    The external agent is able to tune in to the human mind, read its contents, and distort information, and present it in a three-dimensional and sometimes physical way that in language and content is very similar to a dream.
    ( Why external? Anomalous events in perception can occur by probability among several systems that independently are not sentient in of themselves ( the senses) but they must be in relationship. They could be an example of cellular intelligence )

    6) "During the close encounter, the psychic communication between the external agent and the mind of the witness is controlled by an unknown factor, controlling and organizing the elements to give the experience some coherence, sometimes adding common elements from other close encounters."
    ( Why is control necessary? Why must it be a CE event? If the alleged pathology is control, it seems very little is controlled as the results are randomized and subject to cross contamination. Why not a policeman, why not etc..the cartoon effects are stand out like a sore thumb, if stealth is the aim )

    7)" Neither the action nor the stage, or the crew of close encounters is determined or prepared before the experience."
    ( Why not? Is not planning to distort perception a game plan? or are you saying it's a biological mismatch? What is this predicate based on?)
    The content of the anomalous experiences are the result of an interaction between the external agent and the psyche of the witness.
    ( No evidence of this external agent except misperception aka "distortion")
    The UFO incident is created at the time when the two "minds" are in tune, and developed upon afterwards.
    ( What other mind? Aliens? Developed afterward? Too vague for this kid)

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Friday, April 27, 2012  

  • Bruce...

    As I have explained on other occasions, I opted for the existence of the external agent, because the UFO experiences are maintained in "order", in an apparent absurdity. If it were only a psychic phenomenon or "cell" unknown to science, do not bother to control an argument more or less within a coherence (extraterrestrial visitation).
    Without this control (by the external agent) would be really aberrant experiences as delirium ... besides occur in all circumstances, at the movies in the theater, in a restaurant, etc cetera,
    Close encounters are very similar to the experiences of sleep, but contain substantially different elements, including physical traces.

    sorry to be so vague in my speculations, my intellect do not give most, maybe someday ... perhaps

    Saludos y gracias

    By Blogger jacarav@ca, at Friday, April 27, 2012  

  • "Without this control (by the external agent) would be really aberrant experiences as delirium ... besides occur in all circumstances, at the movies in the theater, in a restaurant, etc cetera,"

    I would disagree with this as a determinate in terms of the examples of these alleged occurrences not happening in a crowded environment due to the absence of an external agent.

    They do occur even on relatively bust streets. I had one such incident reported to me that involved a late friend, Craig Siegal, who swore he "bumped" into me on sidewalk said hello, I looked ahead and did not acknowledge his presence. I was several states away. I doubt there was an "external agent"

    Many sightings of dead famous personages occur as well in public environments, such as Elvis, Jim Morrison etc.
    There are many examples and /or accounts of time displacements where individuals in a crowded environment find themselves on the same street or environment as it was many years ago ( style of clothing, buildings etc) They happen once never to happen again.

    In fact I think the relative isolation of the observer in these vague accounts would make for a more prone environment to internal influences away from distractions. Again, I don't see any link to an sentient external agent manipulating minds, and I don't think you have a logical rationale in this.
    Minds are more than capable of manipulating themselves both in public as well as private settings.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Why is this tale called a "ufo story"?



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Bruce (and Don):

    You fellows don't get Jose Caravaca's intent or hypothesis.

    The events he provides have a UFO patina about them -- all of his presentations at his blog with us and here at Iconoclast(s).

    While you, Bruce, want to turn his reported incidents into a kind of ghost event, they are not that.

    Ghost-like events, such as that you cite in your comment, take place surely, and may be similar or caused by the same "agent" (psychological/ neurological or Caravaca-specific) but the reports Jose gives us are of a different nature and kind, going to my constant plaint that such events and UFO reports have to be categorized like genera, species, and class before we can study them in a quasi-scientfic way.

    You fellows can put your own spin on what the Jose reports may show or be, but that would be better done at your own venues where you can present your views undistracted by the likes of me (or Jose).


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don...


    I would like to tell that this incident was investigated by the Italian group well known CISU;
    CISU is the Italian Center for UFO Studies, an organization founded in 1987 with the intention to discuss the UFO phenomenon. It is one of the most solid and well managed UFO organizations in Europe. Based in Turin, the direction of Edoardo Russo,with many qualified and experienced members. This structure is supported by an excellent regional network of specialists, with numerous ongoing research programs, ably coordinated.

    thanks for the comments... Don and Bruce

    By Blogger jacarav@ca, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Rich, many decades ago I presented a case to my supervisor. My client had described a dream. I told my supervisor I thought the client was lying and hadn't had the dream. At my hesitation to discuss it because I thought it a lie (and I was very likely right) my supervisor said "So what?"

    So, I learned a valuable lesson: everything is grist for the mill.

    However, I did know the client existed.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Yes, Don...

    Everything...I agree: everything! is germane or grist for the mill.

    I'd like to be directed to sites or blogs where that everything is delineated.

    Comments here are usually not fecund with nuance, which I'm about to address with a posting.

    And comments often are off topic because the commenter has a pet thesis they want to extol.

    A recent brouhaha at Gawker dealt with this dichotomy between a topic and the comments applied to it.

    If everyone would stay on topic, I'd be happy.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Mr. Caravaca, I referred to it as a "tale" because of the absence of any material detail in it which would permit anyone to confirm it.

    And, as I stated, I don't see why you call it a "ufo story", there being no ufo in it, unless the object in the courtyard stands in for a ufo. Minimal information, such as the object's dimensions would be important. One would like to know about the lighting in and around the courtyard, and whether they were residences or places of business. One would also want to know whether the Ravenna Festival was underway at the time.

    But as Rich wrote, I don't get it. So, I'll leave it at that.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don:

    What I meant is that you and Bruce miss the key clue to the report...

    That an artifact or object was integral to the event disclosed by the witness.

    That is a nuanced element that takes the event out of the generic observation that something bizarre was seen....the object or artifact is the icing on the cake, the constant factor in all -- and I mean all! -- of Senor Caravaca's presentations.

    The object is the one thing that stands out, even as the peripheral elements change (to fulfill the witness's unique mind-set).

    That's what you and Bruce don't get.

    It's a "clue" that can't be placed outside all the "tales" that Jose Caravaca has given us.

    That's my point.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Rich wrote: "That an artifact or object was integral to the event disclosed by the witness."

    Since there was no interaction between the Roman and the object, and since the object was not seen landing, taking off, or in the sky, what is being referred to is that a being and an object appearing in the same instant of the witnesses' vision.

    Can we apply distortion theory to a similar event which we are all somewhat familiar with? What about Zamora?

    The witness sees down in an arroyo an overturned white car and two beings dressed in white near it. Both the object and the beings are seen in the same instant of vision.

    And this is really worth asking, imo, of this instant How are the object and the beings integral to the event?



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don:

    You are kidding or being stubborn.

    In all the reports that Jose Caravaca has presented -- quite a few now -- there is an object from which entities emerge or are tethered to in some way.

    It's the total package or the pattern that you are neglecting in your commentary.

    You've taken this one report and not the gestaltian totality of the Caravaca oeuvre.

    That's what disturbs me.

    The whole panoply of sightings or hallucinations or anything else has to be taken into account.

    It's that analagous six blind wise men trying to determine what an elephant is that your view(s) evoke.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Rich wrote: "It's the total package or the pattern that you are neglecting in your commentary."

    Then I've highlighted a case that should not have been presented with the others, rather than being "stubborn". I've not written anything about Mr. Caravaca's theory.

    I'll leave it at that.

    (I wonder if you recognize the "nuance" I introduce into the Zamora sighting, though).



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • .."the reports Jose gives us are of a different nature and kind, going to my constant plaint that such events and UFO reports have to be categorized like genera, species, and class before we can study them in a quasi-scientfic way."
    Respectfully, I think you are missing the forest for the trees but that what makes all of this an interesting subject, which is essentially what JG Bennett said, it is learning how to learn that is the essence of any issue.
    While I am in agreement that classification in the natural sciences is a logical pursuit only in so much as any scientist would attest to determine relationships, similarities between them as common traits rather than separating them ( in this case by language) into autonomous areas of study.
    If you look at scientific study, one of the most successful investigative tools is multidisciplinary study inasmuch as you yourself said ( much to my benefit) that you cannot study UFOs by UFO,s.

    Ghost phenomenon has many comparable attributes which are too numerous to place here.
    What I was suggesting was not to discourage Jose but to have him broaden his research of relationships and contexts.

    I highly recommend DR Persinger's
    "Space-Time Transients and Unusual Events" if Jose has not read it. I think we can broaden each others horizon here, or at least I hope so.

    We are all in the dark, and I think comparing viewpoints is well worthy of the energy applied even when we disagree with the caveat of doing so intelligently without personal broadsides.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don:

    It's me, not you.

    I often find that you, as I see it, go off on tangents.

    You are distracted, as I see it (my fault it seems), and distract others by going on a path that is tangential to the topic at hand.

    You are in the same place as others but you are stopped from being alerted by an attacking bear because you've found a daisy that needs picking or observation.

    You don't see this as a flaw.

    And maybe it isn't but your views, it seems to me, are diminished by your side-tracking the discussion.

    As for the Zamora incident, I view that as a real -- one of the few -- observation of something strange; Zamora an exemplary witness.

    I don't see the sighting as a hoax, whioh irritates my friend Anthony Bragalia, and I don't see it as an ET intrusion which irritates people like David Rudiak, a hard-core ET believer.

    And if it is a Distortion event, it is unique in its parameters.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Rich wrote: "Zamora an exemplary witness."

    If only the ufo-collectors who opine on the case were as good as the witness.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • I will point out that there has been no discussion for me or Bruce to sidetrack. Who's left? Dominick and his plausible explanation?

    Rich, do you want a discussion of the Distortion Theory?

    Bruce wrote: "Ghost phenomenon has many comparable attributes which are too numerous to place here."

    Isn't the most obvious one the lack of real world detail? Strip out all detail except of the object(s) of interest and what's left seems "dreamy", hypnogogic, even paranormal, an altered state, a twilight episode.

    Some people find it evocative. I just wonder whether the courtyard was lit.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don:

    It's The Hound of the Baskerville's clue: the dog that did not bark.

    The stand-out clue, in each and every account Jose has presented, and I know you've read them, is the object or artifact that "flies" -- the UFO: the one thing that appears, remarkably similar, in all of the reports.

    That is the essence of the Vallee and Aubeck book too: the things that fly have an essential similarity.

    The only difference(s) in them comes from the peccadilloes of the observers.

    That's what you're missing or avoiding.

    That's why Jose's events fall into the UFO category, and why they reflect something different than the ghost story genre; e.g., the manifestations often leave physical traces as Jose keeps pointing out, over and over again.

    Ghosts do not leave physical traces, despite Bruce's need to lump them in with the UFO genre.

    As to whether the courtyard was lit or not, that is a red-herring, as far as I'm concerned.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Rich wrote: "That's what you're missing or avoiding."

    What is missing by my lights is narrative, which is why I prefer ufo professional writers over ufologists (problem with the writers though is their tendency to make up goood stories where they feel the want. Palmer was a whiz at doing that).

    Whether the courtyard was lighted or not and every other trivial detail, when known, helps us visualize the moment.

    "Looking out the window, she saw..."

    Was the window open or closed? Ravenna is an ancient town -- was it new glass or old? Small panes or large?

    I need to see the moment as it was in the real world, and not as some stick figure dreamy sequence of cartoony snapshots.

    Written language, like the spoken, has its hacks.

    Rich either quit complaining about ufology or turn your back on it as I have.



    By Blogger Don, at Saturday, April 28, 2012  

  • Don:

    I agree that every detail is important, maybe very important.

    Jose Caravaca is not overly fluent in English so that may account for some flux in his submissions for us here.

    (I rework his submissions to us so any fault with them lies with me.)

    If you see his Spanish site and can read it, you'd see that he's a rather good writer, and quite literary.

    That said, what you seem to overlook is the pattern in the sightings he's provided.

    The window pane, in the context of the whole, is meaningless pretty much, as is the lighting of the courtyard.

    I have, like you, turned my back on that thing called "ufology" but not the UFO enigma....although I see the mystery as a waning factor in my life.

    My complaint with you is that you seem to get hung up on things that appear to be irrelevant. They may not be, but they sure seem to be.

    And you do so with Roswell at Randle's blog, where your input is often ignored....because it sidetracks the discussion there.

    That's not a criticism. just an observation.

    You may be hitting the nail right on its head, but in the context of the debate, such as the one here, you seem out on a limb of a tree that isn't part of the forest we're trying to discover.

    We've also had a comment from Bruce Duensing implying that ghosts leave physical traces.

    Since he didn't substantiate the comment, we didn't add it; it was clutter, nothing more.

    Bruce thinks that the Ghost/UFO connection is to be considered seriously.

    We don't, and thus I don't see us going in that direction here, at this blog.

    There are blogs where the connection is stressed.

    Bruce would do well to seek them out.

    And you, Don, would do well to take you search for minutiae to sites where others dwell on such things.

    Our attempt at a gestaltian overlay is not conducive to side-bars, red-herrings, or obsessions with aspects of reports that, to us, seem irrelevant.

    If you want to express views that are counter to ours, let us know where your site or blog is and we'll send others to your venue, as we did for Bruce when his blog was operative.

    You are two smart guys, too smart may be how I should put it.

    I admire your search for the forensic elements in sightings, but not to the extent that such a search side-tracks from any overview we're trying to make.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • I'm not referring to Mr Caravaca's narrative skills. I don't care about him. I refer to the reporter of the sighting. Absent that, there is nothing for me to discuss about a sighting. People do not make reports, witness things, give testimony, sign affidavits except at the courthouse. Instead, the tell stories. They attempt to communicate meaning, not facts. All there is of a ufo story is the story, and it is their story I want, not some collector's account of it.

    Before I go, let me bring it home to a case you have an issue with, the one that Hynek labelled as swamp gas.

    How should that case have been investigated? You were a member of the press. How would you have developed the story? What questions would you have asked and of whom? Get that worked out, and you will understand what it is I do.



    By Blogger Don, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • Don:

    Jose Caravaca has established credibility in Spain, Europe, South America and Mexico because of his supplemental research into the vicissitudes of reports or stories by those who say they've had a strange UFO-like experience.

    I find Jose's accounts to be of high value, and worthy of scrutiny and hypothetical rumination.

    As for the 1966 Swamp gas fiasco, I was an intern at The Detroit News and gathered information for the reporters there, a few of whom came out to Ann Arbor after I told them of the rampant hysteria prevalent during that March period.

    I stood by as Frank Mannor and his son Ronald were interviewed, and I was sent to Hillsdale to get information on the sighting(s) there.

    The ultimate reports, which I still have from the newspapers, were cautious and objective.

    Frank and Ronald Mannor were authentic, as was the Hillsdale Civil Defense Director.

    The reporters took notes as did I in Hillsdale, and turned those notes into their news items.

    The accuracy of the information they gathered was not compromised by bias or stupidity.

    The TV reporters were a little more cavalier with Mr. Mannor, which caused him much grief.

    The TV guys were not polite or professional, whereas the NEWS fellows were truly professional and journalistic.

    The key players, the Mannors, were interviewed (taped and noted) as were the Hillsdale college co-eds.

    Hynek's broadside was ludicrous on the face of it....swamp gas indeed!

    He was treated rudely by the press after his pronouncement, not just ignored but hooted and rebuffed.

    The reporters who were on the scene in Ann Arbor took in everything, noted everything, much as you would have I think.

    They included the nonsense, the foolishness, the hysterical crowds, and the participation by law officers in the hoopla (where even a time-lapse photo of the moon and Venus were proffered as pictures of the things allegedly seen by the Ann Arbor/Dexter residents after the Mannor account was publicized).

    That doesn't have to be worked out for me. I've been a reporter for a lot of newspapers in this area, and for the AP.

    Your approach isn't journalistic by a long shot. It's more like a diarist gathering minutiae that he or she thinks is relevant, but is only relevant to them, subjectively.

    It doesn't have an objective patina to it.

    The aim of journalism is to get to the core truth of a story without being sidetracked by irrelevant material no matter how interesting that peripheral material may be to one's personal desires or whimsy.

    You are not a journalist. You're a guy gathering minutiae that you personally and subjectively find intriguing.

    You aren't seeking the core truth of the stories, even that of Roswell.

    You're looking to feed or satisfy your particular interests.

    That isn't an inside observation by me, you've said as much openly.

    I don't criticize your approach but it isn't journalism or even what people like Kevin Randle do.

    It's a hobbyist's approach to things.

    It's fun, but it's not what Caravaca does or what Bragalia does.

    It's sort of like what I do...fool around with a story and look for aspects that interest me, now that I no longer work as a journalist (for a newspaper or the public).


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • I think you are mistaking Don's intellectual curiosity about the details of the event Jose cited as a inferred critique, or at least that is how it appeared to be discouraged. It appeared to me as certainly on topic as you cannot get more on topic than Don naturally asking for more details. You lost me on this.

    "Ghosts do not leave physical traces, despite Bruce's need to lump them in with the UFO genre."

    As far as physical trace evidence of "ghost" activity, there is:
    1. Recorded and observed manipulation of material objects.
    2. Electronic Voice Phenomenon.
    3. Footsteps impressions being observed and recorded in dust, flour and other mediums.
    4. Manipulation of antecedent or lagged dream states in direct conjunction with simulated direct communication with "ghost" personages that are transient patterns that are simultaneous with
    anomalous activities.
    5. Recorded and observed drops in the range of five to eight degrees in highly localized ambient atmospheric temperatures
    6. Low frequency localized radiant energy phenomenon that is recorded and graphed.
    7.Physical somatic traces such as scratches,skin irritation, welts etc ( similar to low degree burn patterns observed within a few minutes of corresponding and simultaneous recording or observation of any of the above.

    I do not believe in "ghosts" anymore than I do cartoon extraterrestrials, however there is anomalous activity present.

    These effects are integral to objects as well as materially verifiable measurement. I think Don was simply looking for more detail. As for myself, I was trying to expand the essence of Jose's premise without broadsiding.

    Its your blog, s someone once said "Do what thous wilt shall be the whole of the law."

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • BTW..
    Another distinctive attribute of CE and "ghost" activity being relevant was the statistical analysis done by Persinger in the aforementioned book, which compared geographic distribution, frequency, and type to a 12 month sample that further distinguished global statistics to those occurring in the United States.
    Trending was analyzed as transients and some interesting "geopsyche" ( Persingers term) similarities occurred.
    The only differentiation I can see between classes of CE and other similar anomalies , is that CE events are more global and the other more local. What they appear to have in common is enabling environmental geophysical and atmospheric energy transients in relation to neurological brain chemistry as a enabling factor. Globally, you have more randomized conditions, hence more randomized events spatially, but the "local weather" tends to be more stable in terms of variables. If CE events represent something more complex, evaluating the similarities of classes of phenomenon fits your criteria for a more scientific approach, rather than simply a collection of anecdotal narratives.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • Don sent a private reply and explained his position, with which I do not disagree.

    He and I are serious UFO hobbyists (my take) looking for something within the UFO sludge that helps explain what UFOs truly are (in my case) and how badly they've been handled (as Don sees it, I think).

    Don and I are in the same book if not on the same page.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

  • Bruce:

    The tangibility that some UFO accounts seem(!) to indicate appear, to me, to be of a better kind than the after effects left by ghosts.

    I've seen ghosts, up close and personal. They scared the bejeesus out of me, even though they weren't threatening, just there, momentarily.

    Nothing left behind to substantiate my sighting(s).

    But the three UFO episodes I experienced didn't leave behind any traces either, aside from newspaper reports and an item in Fate magazine about one of the sightings (by me and many others over Detroit in the early 1950s).

    So you and I are at an impasse.

    I, however, defer to Jose Caravaca, who insists that his accounts (noted here and at his blog with us) are replete with witness testimony and follow-up research and investigation, by qualified investigators (not ufologists!), showing tangible remnants of the interaction the witnesses described.

    This, to me, is far and away better than the prosaic aftermaths of most (all?) ghost encounters.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 29, 2012  

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