When she died, my parents found her place a mess. All the cabinet doors open, as she believed for some reason this would rid her of the cockroaches of which she had, evidently, such a deep phobia.
On my father’s side there was also the sister of my rather ominous grandfather — an amazing woman with delicate features, a soothing voice and the most vibrant blue eyes. So calm and collected, you could never imagine her yell or get angry. In my youth, she seemed mystical, and that never went away for as long as she lived. She felt like a furnace of energy.
It was not until after she had died and we went to visit her husband that I would ask him about the UFO encounter they both had. He had been driving with her when he saw the saucer and began to pull over. He planned on joining the small crowd on the side of the road, watching as a saucer with a rim of multicolored lights encircled a telephone pole. He was fascinated and wanted to watch it. They were being seen all over the country at the time, he told me, but this was the first and only time he had ever seen one. She hid inside the car, though, terrified, frantically begging for him to drive them away, and he swiftly submitted to doing so.
My great aunt was not insane, nor my great uncle; here I feel confident. Nothing seems to point to my father as anything but a carrier for his maternal inheritance, but for the record he is sane as well. Only his heavily strange mother suggests probable insanity; that she was perhaps as highly-functioning a schizophrenic as she was an alcoholic. There is the possibility, of course, that there were flying saucers out her window — that she was strange and an alcoholic, yes, but also truly had encounters.
Then there is my mother. I know my mother and I have similar neurology, as we share similar “migraine aura” attacks. She had her telepathy with grandma, I’ve had my share of seemingly telepathic experiences. Though my mother has never spoken about seeing aliens, she has certainly had a wide range of strange experiences, including UFO sightings and an enduring telepathic communication with her own mother when they once shared a vacation together.
One experience she has told me about may be even more suggestive. Sometimes at night she would sit up in the darkness and see faces rush at her from the distance, disappearing just as they were to her forehead or nose. When I had asked her what the faces looked like, she told me that they looked a lot like some of the pastel drawings I had made of rather demented faces inspired by the Doctor creature.
Still, what are the odds of inheriting it directly through my mother from my maternal grandmother as well as indirectly through my father via both his maternal and paternal lines? Three threads finding convergence in me. Maybe these threads are twisted in me; an unfortunate genetic knot of multifaceted madness. Perhaps inheriting my mother’s migraine neurology and inheriting, through my father acting as a carrier, my paternal grandmother’s functional alcoholic and potentially-schizophrenic neurology is sufficient enough an explanation, no aliens included. Enough potential neurological malfunctions in the genetic lottery, you’re bound to inherit some neurological glitches. Through this cocktail, my seeing aliens and having astral projections, telepathic experiences, encounters with the discarnate and past life memories of being human at least twice before, though before that presumably an alien — all of it could make sense. The odds are in your favor to develop a psychosis that has found effective expression through the medium of culturally-mediated symbols.
As humble as it might be if I were at this point to succumb to the label of the harmless but nonetheless psychotic, I am hopelessly drawn to more pessimistic conclusions. For when I later made the connection between the faces my mother saw, their similarity to the Doctor and what the Doctor said to me in the first flashback, I couldn’t help but wonder if what they claim could in any way be literally true.
How could they not be lying? That was all I said to myself about it all for a long time. Even granting the theory of panspermia, and so perhaps the notion that all life might be related, it is so unlikely as to be impossible that interplanetary-scale interspecies reproduction could produce a viable hybrid embryo.
In time, however, it came to my attention that there was a way of breaching the barriers between distant species. The operative word would be transgenesis, the technological means of lateral gene transfer. This is the form of genetic engineering that allows genes from one species to be inserted and incorporated into the genome of another. The genes that are transferred from one organism to another are transgenes, and the organism that incorporates these transgenes into their genome is a transgenic organism. This would be the only conceivable means by which they could cross the species.
How would they do it? They would perhaps abduct a recently-impregnated woman, extract the fertilized egg and alter the male pronucleus by introducing transgenes from an alien donor. If the transgenic process was successful, the resulting child, call her Jane, would be a transgenic human being bearing characteristics of all three of her parents: her human mother, her human father, and the alien donor.
Depending on the sex of the alien donor, it would either constitute a second mother or a second father for Jane. Let’s say the transgenic parent of Jane was a second father.
Jane grows up and they monitor her remotely as she develops over the years, occasionally abducting her for an on-board “check-up” inside and out. Physically, they examine her body, insert or extract implants for remote monitoring. Telepathically, they run their psychological examinations and tests by throwing her into subjective, life-like “dream” scenarios to study emotional reactions, play back and examine certain memories as they “skim” the associations.
Jane grows, Jane meets Jack, they get married and she gets pregnant. Remote monitors transmit this data and so they promptly abduct Jane, their pregnant transgenic human, and screen the embryo. They find that they have a stable, germ-line transformation: the embryo inherited the mother’s transgenes.
Then they build upon their success by manipulating Jane’s embryo even further, altering it with additional transgenes from another male alien donor. That embryo develops into a child, John — just another transgenic human being, another abductee.
As a male, John’s alien donor would constitute a second father. His mother’s transgenic donor, from whom John also inherited transgenes, would be John’s second maternal grandfather.
Jane could be my mother, and the frowning Doctor creature her transgenic donor and second father. I could be John, the Goblin Man my own transgenic donor and second father. The Doctor would, by extension, be my grandfather in a way, just as he claimed when I was five years old.
The notion sounds insane, of course, and I have salvaged some self-respect in being aware of that fact, even while I so incongruently find myself investing in the idea as a “probability (assuming my sanity)” just to have a context for all these perpetually surreal episodes in my life.
Or maybe I’m some living brain floating in a wire-fed jar and someone slipped a highly psychedelic substance in with my liquid nutrients.
Finally: an all-inclusive explanation.
So I did.
There she stands, forehead tipped forward, dyed-red hair dangling so naturally, so perfectly over her beatiful face and vibrant eyes so fucking seductively she cannot be real, and yet she clearly is. Like every transient fixation I develop, she becomes alpha and omega, beginning and end, life and death of my evidently ever-bound heart and gonads.
I want her for I have been foolish enough to remember how great it can be in the beginning when I have so rarely succumb to it, though the ending flashes before my tainted, jaded inner eye at the same time.
The higher you climb, the harder you fall into this hormonally-driven form of temporary insanity, and it takes you so long to heal. Remember now? Best to play it safe and play it wise, to give up on those games and just stay low to the ground.
Already you can see your resistance wavering. Feeling jealous, possessive, but she is no object and you don’t own her. What would happen if she stole your breath away, if you fell head over heels again just to get it back by breathing her in?
You’re just wasting time in oscillation. Shit or get off the pot. It seems you’re just goofy-glued to the toilet seat shooting machine-gun blanks that just serve to ripple the water, teasing her fluid skin. Her aggravation grows. Your ineptness persists. One minute a stone wall, the next a pushover. You are the king of incongruence; master of mixed messages.
In amnesia, not all memory is lost. While the essence of our identities would appear to be memory, memory is not limited to what is known as explicit memory, which is to say the episodic memory we play before our minds eye and semantic memory we recite to ourselves.
Implicit memory involves the unconscious and automatic memory of form, pattern and meaning. Think of the mannerisms and expressions we use, the postures we hold, or philias we have, our talents and passions, our aversions and addictions: all of that is bound up in what is known as implicit memory.
Implicit memory stores and retrieves memory through a process known as priming, which is accomplished when repeated exposure to a stimulus unconsciously and automatically influences the psychological or behavioral response to a later stimulus through similarity in context, meaning, or pattern of form. As a consequence, the implicit weaves together and influences sensory memory, working memory, and long-term memory, providing a common structure for them all — the bodily pattern of form.
As all context, meaning and pattern of form is experienced through and within the confines of the body, permeating it and permeated by it. This suggests to me that all implicit memory is bound up in what we could call morphological memory, and as a consequence the morphological is the implicit in toto. It is the template for sensory, working, and long term memory. It is the template for experience.
There is suggestion that implicit memory persists beyond the confines of the corporeal as well. When frequent out-of-body experiencers describe being aware throughout the process of transition from the physical body to the subtle one, they describe the subtle body as existing in some way in and around the physical body, corresponding to the notions of an aura or energy field sensitive and responsive to the mind (and which may actually constitute the mind) that appears to be the source of all psi phenomena. In the out-of-body state, implicit effects are revealed in the apparitional form and the familiar sensory means of experience the disembodied typically default to. Implicit effects are also implied in the retained psychological and behavioral patterns that constitute identity. What is often referred to as the subtle body, then, would appear synonymous with implicit memory.
This morphologically-structured implicit memory, as the subtle body, also appears to provide a blueprint for subsequent incarnations. A developing human body appears malleable to the subtle body whereas the subtle body becomes more malleable to the human body as biological development proceeds.
The implicit scaffolding of morphological memory is implied first in the corresponding architecture often found to exist between the facial features of an individual’s present and former physical body. The idea seems to be most passionately pursued by one Walter Semkiw, MD, but more convincing sources are to be found. The most notable is researcher Ian Stevenson, who discovered, in the process on following up on former cases, that many of the children had indeed grown to bear a striking resemblance to their alleged former incarnations.
There is also the case of one Jeffrey J. Keene, an Assistant Fire Chief who lives in Westport, Connecticut. He has come to believe he’s the reincarnation of John B. Gordon. Gordon was a Confederate General of the Army of Northern Virginia during the American Civil War, and he died on January 9, 1904. Alongside other astounding correlations between Keene and Gordon there is the incredible likeness between the two in terms of physical appearance.
Aside from corresponding facial architecture, many of the subjects in the cases at the Division of Perceptual studies bear birthmarks or deformities that correspond in appearance and placement to the death wounds that brought their former body to an abrupt and violent end. Sometimes, however, these birthmarks and deformities correspond to injuries or marks from surgeries that happened at some point close to the time of death, though they were not the actual cause of death.
With respect to deformities, Stevenson has spoken widely of children with deformed limbs or even missing toes or fingers who claimed to remember being murdered and mutilated. When it comes to birthmarks, Stevenson focuses primarily on the more extreme and interesting cases involving an “elevated nevus,” which involve lifted, depressed or malformed areas of the skin rather than mere variance in pigmentation. These are often found to correspond to stab wounds or bullet wounds — entry and exit — of the former body.
There is suggestion, however, that birthmark correlations may also be more subtle and involve wounds that correspond to the former body but were not necessarily those that brought on expiration. Though not investigated by Stevenson, for instance, there are six places on Keene’s body where he has either cluster veins, scars, or other markings that correspond to the wounds that Gordon suffered during the Civil War.
Throughout human history, it would appear that cultures have picked up on this aspect of morphological memory in reincarnation and have utilized that knowledge to their advantage in the form of what Dr. Jim Tucker refers to as “experimental birthmarks.” By marking a dying body in a telling way, the hopes are they will be able to identify that individual in their subsequent rebirth when the mark carries over in the form of a birthmark.
In reinforcement of the notion of a morphological memory serving as a template, there are also effects internal to the body that carry over, often in seeming correspondence to birthmarks or deformities as well as the individual’s explicit memories of the former life. Take, for instance, the case of Edward Austrian, son of Patricia and Donald Austrian. He had a fear of rain — particularly ”dark, gray, drizzly, damp days,” his mother said — from the time he was about one year of age. He was also had chronic throat problems, which he referred to as ”my shot.” Eventually this throat problem was revealed to be a large, noticeable cyst in his throat, and the doctors decided to remove his tonsils as the first step in surgery.
After the surgery at age four, Ed confessed to his parents that he had been a 18-year-old soldier named James during the first World War. He explained in detail how he had made his way through the mud in the rain and cold, how he held his heavy rifle, how he saw a field of trees and, beyond that, deathly desolation. And he explained then how he had heard a shot ring out behind him, and how the bullet had evidently gone through someone else and then hit him in the back of the neck, after which he felt his throat fill up with blood.
After he had broken the ice and could talk about the matter freely with his parents, his fear of rain vanished, as did the cyst — to the amazement of his doctor, Steven Levine, as well as Ed’s own father, who was a doctor as well.
There are no other cases of such spontaneous psychosomatic healing of carry-over death wounds through the expression and emotional discharge of confessing these memories, but there does seem to be another route by which one can not only escape the effects of intrinsic memory’s morphological scaffolding but retain a continuity of consciousness and unobstructed access to explicit recall.
These are the cases known as parakaya pravesa, and they suggest that one can not only leave a body before its death — the conventional OBE — but can enter a body, even take up permanent residence in it, long after its born.
They accomplish this by exiting and entering the body in a special way that utilizes both the Anahata or “heart” chakra as well as Ajna, the chakra often called the “third eye.” Among the New Age, one who enters a body long after its birth is known as a “walk-in.” In any case, if this can happen it would seem that a body is not irrevocably connected to a singular unit of consciousness but is to some degree still vulnerable to take-over body-jacking by disembodied entities. Individual cases seem to suggest bodies are vulnerable in extreme states of poor physical or psychological health.
The stories of dybbuks or possessions by poltergeist entities may exemplify efforts on the behalf of the disembodied to degenerate the individual physically and psychologically until that window of vulnerability is achieved.
In such cases it appears explicit and implicit memory carries over in tact, and as an added benefit, morphological memory has no effect on a body so late in its developmental stages. One earns a flesh-vessel passed the developmental stage that would have made the body in custom design due to the subtle scaffold. This would be of benefit to those that would otherwise be born without limbs, for instance, and so may be an attractive, however laborious, pursuit of some of those among the community of the fleshless.
It would appear we cannot escape ourselves, even if we can escape the customization of the container, however, for be it by means of reincarnation or the aforementioned shortcut we inevitably carry along our implicit memory. We still handle ourselves, the world, and the body the same characteristic way be the body unfit or custom-made.
From the time they can talk onward, even after they have lost access to explicit memory of a former life, strange behavior is noted in the children in CORT cases which do not seem to make sense in the context of the present or past conditions of their “one life to live.”
All of it makes perfect sense, however, when placed in the context of the previous life that the child claims to have had. This includes our phobias or aversions, such as those perhaps borne out of the means by which we died, as well as our prejudices and grudges. Alongside them are our philias — our obsessive attachments, fixations and addictions; our passions and preferences. Think of our wardrobe tendencies, our music and food preferences, our styles of social relation and our body language.
As another testament to the carry-over style of governance between one body and another, there is apparently also handwriting style. According to Vikram Raj Singh Chauhan, a Patiala-based forensic science expert, a comparison of the handwriting styles of reincarnation subject Taranjit Singh with his alleged former incarnation Satnam Singh revealed high correspondence. This varied only by what he attributed to muscular coordination unmatched in mastery due to the differing ages of the body through which they were written. He added,
“In his present birth, Taranjit has never gone to school as he belongs to a poor family, but yet when I told him to write the English and Punjabi alphabet, he wrote them correctly.”
Though rare, there are also instances in which these children have displayed xenoglossy, the ability to speak in a language they should not know. Look at the case of Swarnlata Mishra, for example, who confused the hell out of her Hindu-speaking parents when she sang her songs in an unknown language — later found to be the lingo of Bengali — and danced her strange dances.
Xenoglossy is not only found in children who managed to carry it over from a past life on their own, however, but also in those who have undergone past life regression hypnosis.
In an interview with Art Bell on Coast-to-Coast AM, Dr. Brian Weiss told of a patient of his: a Chinese surgeon on her first trip to the US who spoke not a word of English. She had brought along a translator, however, and through him Weiss had put her under hypnosis. She recalled a former life in 1850s San Francisco, during which she suddenly began orating an argument she was having with her husband during that lifetime — and doing so in fluent English.
Some attachments are more extreme, however, often to the point of being debilitating. They may display homesickness and an apparent inability to let go of their previous lifestyles and circumstances. Some of the children in the CORT manifest this directly, insisting on being taken back to their “real” home, occupation, parents or spouse. Others may instead act out in play the circumstances of their previous life, such as the job or family role, and often the death scene as well.
There is also the matter of gender identity and sexual persuasion. Those born into a body that is the opposite sex of their previous incarnation, Stevenson says, almost always cross-dress and play games associated with the opposite sex, and otherwise show like attitudes associated with the opposite sex. This may fade over time; if not, the personality becomes homosexual. Sometimes the reborn, either in the announcing dreams or after they learn to speak, insist that their names be changed to the names they had in their former life — or, for those who switched genders, they will prefer the other-sex forms of their previous names.
Think, too, of our talents. In an interview with Omni, Stevenson commented on how it was relatively easy to explain away the talents of, for instance,
“… such composers as Bach, Mozart, and Beethoven, all of whose fathers were fine musicians. But what about George Frederic Handel? His family had no discernible interest in music; his father even sternly discouraged it. Or take the cases of Elizabeth Fry, the prison reformer, and Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. Both had to fight for their chosen callings from childhood onward. One can find endless examples that are difficult to explain given our current theories. But if one accepts the possibility of reincarnation, one can entertain the idea that these children are demonstrating strong likes, dislikes, skills, and even genius that are the logical results of previous experiences. I have found some children with skills that seem to be carried over from a previous life.”
If we all have lived previous lifetimes, there is, of course, the question as to why most fail to remember anything of their prehistory. Where is the explicit memory — the autobiographical memory that weaves together the episodic and semantic?
Amnesia would seem to make sense as a survival strategy. For some eleven to fourteen years, after all, the human infant (optimally) develops in the “second womb” of the home, where biological and social needs can be met through the phantom umbilical cord of the caretaker (maternal/paternal) bond. Considering that the developing body-brain is instinctually aimed at biological and psychological survival and growth within the present physical and social spheres, recalling previous existences or even the major portion of one’s present life would serve to hinder more than help, and may even constitute a direct threat to proper development as a biological organism.
As a consequence the amnesic process develops, operating in a fashion akin to the mechanism that allows us to hone in on the person across the table and the conversation we’re having with her and screen out other conversations and chatter in the crowded restaurant. Similarly, our brains focus on our immediate needs and screen out all that is irrelevant to that end during periods of neurological pruning, where frequently-accessed associations are solidified while the neglected are snipped away. This mechanism kicks in several times throughout our development. According to Joseph Chilton Pearce, after the scissor-happy session at age eleven, some eighty percent of the neural mass we had at the point of vaginal exit has been relegated to the neurological trash-bin for lack of use.
There are those that seem to retain such memories, however, at least for a time.
Cases of the Reincarnation Type, or CORT, have been amassed by the Division of Perceptual Studies at the University of Virginia’s School of Medicine. It was originally headed by the late Dr. Ian Stevenson, with the torch passed to Dr. Jim Tucker upon his 2002 retirement. Rather than regression hypnosis, they rely on unprompted reports of young children on the lives they left behind when they left their last vessel of flesh.
Physicists and cosmologists both have come to seriously entertain notions that our universe may in fact be part of a multiverse, and the implication is that our universe may be but a small part.