Aliens, UFOs and Abnormal Psychology.

Dismissing myself as crazy has been my convenient go-to, a default triggered when my strange experiences and their apparent implications become too overwhelming. When this surreal aspect of my life comes to face the giggle factor, meets the laughter curtain and exceeds my boggle threshold, the barrier beyond which I am no longer able to suspend disbelief, I endure a sort of nausea of the mind so intense that I, for a time, submit to it. Declaring myself crazy by no means makes me feel better — to the contrary, I always feel worse — but condemning myself in this fashion requires less energy than continuing my efforts to actually understand my experiences. The issue is that once I get beyond the emotional devastation of labeling myself crazy and subject this self-diagnosis to analysis I ultimately come to realize it really doesn’t constitute a diagnosis at all. “Crazy” is just a buzzword, dismissive in spirit and entirely devoid of true explanation.

So early on, back in high school, I found myself trying to identify a more specific self-diagnosis by reading through books on psychology, even an Abnormal Psychology college textbook I got from a friend. I didn’t know whether to be relieved or terrified when I found that no single condition I read about seemed to cover the crazy shit that I had been experiencing. No umbrella terms appeared to be available. When I began seeing a psychologist shortly thereafter, and one that I had quickly developed a respect for, I explained how I had tried diagnosing myself and failed, as no disorder seemed to encompass it all. In my memory, he retorted, stating that I was wrong, and when I pressed him he fumbled and mentioned schizophrenia. The fact that he immediately seemed to backpedal when he saw my reaction only made my terror increase. The moment hung with me and I fell back on it when the weirdness weighed me down. At one point I remember finding a page on the net that described traits of the schizophrenic and the schizoid personality that seemed to fit me perfectly.  I scotch taped it to my bedroom door.

In 2002, when I came back to him after an intense cluster of experiences and casually acknowledged in our session that I was fully aware that I was schizophrenic, he immediately asked me, with a skeptical look on his face, who it was that had given me that diagnosis. When I stated that it had been him, he was emphatic that this could not have been the case. After explaining to me that the term schizophrenia was essentially a dumping ground for what may turn out to be various disorders, he took on this proposed diagnosis directly.

“If you’re a schizophrenic,” he told me, “you’re certainly a highly-functioning one.”

I found the notion that I, a twenty-something living at home yet again and working fast food, could be described as “highly functioning” by any measure to be ludicrous, but he was, after all, the goddamned professional. Though he predicted that I had particular abnormalities in certain regions of my brain and called my experiences “perceptual anomalies,” he never gave me a diagnosis.

For a time, specifically after reading Dr. Marlene Steinberg’s book, The Stranger in the Mirror: Dissociation — The Hidden Epidemic, I also explored the notion that I might suffer from a dissociative disorder, perhaps even Dissociative Identity Disorder. Without doubt I experience what has been labeled dissociative symptoms. In addition, my memories and experiences may in part be due to some alternate personality or “alter” and there appears to be evidence of its beginnings in my childhood. My initial rush of memories and the flashbacks that followed might represent a previously compartmentalized sector of my mind, one belonging to this alter, colliding with my conscious personality and merging. My experience with the ideomotor response in my use of the Ouija board, in my spontaneous artwork and writing, as well as during the hypnosis session, all may have represented the alter gaining slow and localized control over my body. The entity I encountered during my “astral projections” might be one manifestation of an alternate personality or alter as well — perhaps after sharing previously isolated memories the separate aspects of mind we have governed over blended further, giving rise to shared lucid dreams I took to be “astral projections.” Maybe the incidents between June and August of 1995, climaxing in the incident at the java juicer, represented transient periods where the alter took control of my body entirely.  

The issue is that this degree of dissociation is typically associated with intense physical and psychological trauma. On the surface, at least, this presents itself to me as an utterly insane proposition. As I imagine is the case with anyone, I have my share of complaints and grievances with respect to how I grew up. My mother favored my sisters over me and I had endless power-struggles with her over the course of my childhood. It hurt and enraged me, and I continue in my attempts to deal with those issues. Even so, I recognize that I was one lucky little asshole. My parents never physically abused us kids. I was certainly never sexually abused. Our harshest punishments as children, which I faced often enough, involved either staring at a corner for a length of time measured by my mother’s oven timer or being under “room arrest,” confined to my bedroom until further notice. Without doubt this nonviolent discipline is what made the abuse I witnessed at Jimmy’s house all the more traumatizing — and indeed, that was all certainly traumatizing from the position of a witness as well, but that it might provide the fuel for alien encounters seemed far more ludicrous to me than the thought that, well, I might have legitimately had alien encounters.

It isn’t just trauma and mental disorders that can allegedly produce these alien encounters, however. People have linked alien abduction experiences with various drugs such as Salvia Divinorum, Ketamine, and psilocybin, but most often DMT. All are classified as psychedelics, I believe, aside from ketamine, which is a dissociative, but unless you’re willing to concede that each of these chemicals constitute different rabbit holes leading to the same parallel universe, all are psychedelic in the true sense of the term, which is to say that they are “mind-revealing.” In other words, these drugs draw back the egoic curtain and let you take a peek beyond the veil of mundane consciousness, bringing you can deal more directly with the more subliminal aspects of the mind — just as psychosis can.

Some believe sleep paralysis alone can produce the abduction experience, which I find ridiculous for several reasons. Even among the popularized abduction cases one can see that bedrooms are not the only place encounters occur and that often enough the people involved are not asleep at the time of the event. They might be fishing or driving, for instance, and be among others who are taken along with them. In addition, I have had sleep paralysis myself and the earliest such experience is the succubus experience mentioned early in the book. Even at the time of the experience I did not interpret it as an alien breaking into my dark room, crawling atop my bed, straddling my immobilized body and proceeding to dry-hump rape me. Instead, I assumed it was a disembodied entity doing something analogous or — more likely, I supposed — this was all a hallucinatory experience brought on by one-part sleep deprivation and one-part prescription medication.

So I have explored the Psychological Hypothesis (PH), which alleges that while it may require activation through trauma, drugs, mental disorders or the peculiar circumstance in which your mind wakes up before your body does, the abduction experience is purely a product of human psychology. There is no external intelligence at work here, only my own. It’s all in my head. A related school of thought I explored posits what I’ll call the Psi Hypothesis (PsiH), and it attempts to compensate for the failure of the PH to account for physical evidence by bringing parapsychology into the fold — specifically, the psi capabilities of the human mind.

My train of thought ultimately ran along this track: if one finds the PH absurd and instead accepts abductions as nuts-and-bolts physical experiences, these physical experiences require you to accept the existence of paranormal phenomena. It is simply a given. After all, a cursory glance at abduction reports should make it clear that telepathy and moving through walls, for instance, is by no means rare in abduction events. To the contrary, paranormal phenomena is pretty fucking standard — and not just during these events, either, but in the wake of them. There is the matter of the “paranormal afterglow” that manifests in my life during these experiences, and while some investigators fail to mention them, personal reports from abductees reveal that I am by no means alone. Others also experience spontaneous telepathic experiences, poltergeist activity, vivid dreams that seem like awakening in a parallel reality, odd coincidences and other strange events.

As this paranormal afterglow runs the full spectrum of psi, stretches on indiscriminately into the gamut of the strange, it seems natural to wonder if the aliens themselves, rather than extraterrestrials, might just be another manifestation. In other words, it could very well still be that the phenomenon is purely psychological at the roots, that it is governed by compartmentalized aspects of my mind that influence me subliminally, that this is truly my conspiracy against myself. Maybe it also branched out into physicality utilizing psi abilities, however: powers which for whatever convenient reason I cannot wield consciously.
This would by necessity be a form of poltergeist. In this view, the phenomenon of poltergeists is explained as a living individual who is experiencing recurrent spontaneous psychokinesis; the psychokinetic activity is the result of subconscious and involuntary acting-out of the focus individual.

For a clearer picture of how this might work we might first turn to a series of parapsychological experiments that have been conducted since 1972. These experiments sought to demonstrate that the display of psi phenomena often attributed to deceased individuals could manifest without them, and so such phenomena were not necessarily evidence for life after death. In the beginning, which in this case was 1972, there was Philip Aylesford, the child of eight members of the Toronto Society for Psychical Research. He was a fictional character they developed with an elaborate backstory regarding his birth, life, and eventual death. They collectively meditated on him before attempting to communicate with him in the style of a Spiritualist seance. Participants reported not only communications but manifestations — they not only saw and heard things, in other words, but poltergeist phenomena also manifested. Other groups conducted similar experiments, reporting that they had successfully created and then conjured Lilith, a World War II French Canadian spy, Sebastian, an alchemist from medieval times and finally Axel, who was from the future.

As expected, results of these experiments were disputed — as were the tales regarding the more extreme manifestation of what has typically been called the tulpa in Western culture and which is also variously known as an egregore or a thought-form. It is often conceived as an imaginary entity that achieves, through ritual intent of its creator, a physical manifestation — according to some, an intentional and advanced rendition of your typical poltergeist.

Though the notion is reasonably dispersed across the collective consciousness at this point, methinks, the only alleged personal account I have come across is the one told by Alexandra David-Neel. In her journey through Tibet, she became interested in tulpas. Having elected to make one herself, she decided on a friendly, pudgy monk, and was eventually able to visualize him as a hallucination in her visual field. Over time the hallucination gained clarity, and eventually she found it indistinguishable from a living, breathing, physical being.

The frightening aspect of her little experiment soon became apparent, however, when the monk began appearing when she hadn’t conjured it, and then began behaving in ways it had not been programmed by her to behave. The monk also seemed to be losing weight and had taken on a distinctly malicious appearance. Nothing was as shocking, however, as when an individual she knew, who knew nothing of her practices, began questioning her about the stranger that had been meandering about in her tent. She reports that it took half a year, but she was eventually able to abolish the creature through other Tibetan techniques.

Though in both of these cases the entities were intentionally generated, in both cases they reportedly also exceed their programming and seemed to take on a life of their own, independent of the conscious aspect of the mind: essentially, a spiritual form of artificial intelligence. It also fits the profile of a dissociative identity state, an alternate personality. They are essentially intentionally-generated alters that can manifest physically.

An interesting aspect of the Philip experiment was that none of the eight involved were gifted psychically. Nonetheless, they were apparently capable of creating and programming a spiritual entity that could communicate in a way that was consistent with that personality and, most important and amazing of all, producing psychokinetic effects. David-Neel seemed to be at least moderately gifted psychically and have some degree of discipline as well; despite being a lone individual, she was able to produce a creature that could be seen by her and others. The entity was also able to become independent of its creators, functioning autonomously. Naturally, this might lead one to wonder what kind of effects a large group of psychically-gifted individuals might be capable of producing.

All the people I know that have had experiences similar to mine seem to have no knowledge of the UFO or abduction phenomenon beyond the superficial reports that the media regurgitates every now and then. Despite this, correlations between our narratives are plentiful right down to unanticipated details. From the way one friend described the shadows of the beings from outside her tent during a formative experience while camping as a child to the way another friend described the manner in which one of the creatures in his encounter ran, there are correlations even in the details littering our experience that I cannot in good conscience deny. This extends to many of those of whom I have read and read about in blogs, articles and books and seen through interviews and documentaries. Could the answer really be that our collective unconscious is conspiring against us, utilizing telepathy to share a narrative and RSPK to bring that narrative to life?

Despite finding the concepts of both the PH and PsiH fascinating, I have, in the end, always choked in my attempts to swallow. Those who have posited that poltergeist activity is the unconscious product of an individual note the similarities in individuals around which the alleged recurrent spontaneous psychokinesis (RSPK) manifests. In cases of alien abduction, on the other hand, it is clear that these experiences are shared by people from all walks of life, people all across the spectrum — racial, religious, cultural, class, education — as well as people of wildly different constitutions who react to these shared experiences in very individual ways. This sounds less like a psychological disorder — with or without psi effects — and more like an actual, nuts-and-bolts experience.

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Under the Influence (Dream Themes).

People I know often tell me their dreams — oftentimes even before they know that dreams in general tend to fascinate me. Occasionally they would tell me that I had been in their dreams, typically as someone off in the distance, just watching. That was an odd consistency, but I neglected to collect any written examples.

I noticed something else more recently, however — the dreams of others in which I am more involved seem to carry a theme, too, and these are more unnerving.

A friend of mine who I’ll call Elizabeth has remarkably vivid dreams and damn good dream recall. She doesn’t even need to write them down despite how long they often are, a talent which I am rather envious of.

In a dream she told me recently (3/22/15) and which I had awakened her from through text, I noted the theme. I did not have the chance to take notes on the dream and she has yet to write it down herself, so some of this is likely to be in error. As I remember her telling me, more or less, her, a young girl (a Mexican sex slave, specifically) and I were hanging around when a humanoid praying Mantis ran by, looking rather terrified. He had an exaggerated mouth of cartoon-like teeth superimposed over where its mouth should be. She said she vaguely recalled him saying something about masks and how we will never see what the mantis-beings really look like. She also seemed to understand that these superimposed mouths were used to express emotion, as their faces were incapable of doing so.

A female mantis then arrived, with the same superimposed teeth, and this was likely what had frightened the male. We fought it. It stabbed me in the chest up by my neck but that was all, though it tore the shirt partway down my chest.

Elizabeth finally killed it by stabbing it in the back of the head, but mantis blood sprayed on me and the girl. I suddenly became paranoid and explained that we had to get it off, as the blood was toxic. The effect it had in the girl was interesting: a horn or barb grew out of the pupil of one eye; a knife grew out of the other.

Elizabeth found me hiding in a closet with one of the superimposed teeth on me now. I seemed to be straining to smile, as if to fool her into thinking I was all right when this was clearly not the case. She could tell because unlike the mantis brings my face could express emotion.

I recalled two dreams that stemmed to carry on the theme of me being under the influence of something. One had been told over the phone and I took notes on it. The other a girl I knew had emailed to me some time ago. I managed to find them.

The first was from a girl I’ll call Savanna, who had emailed me in response to an email I had sent to her earlier that same day (11/7/03) in which she wrote:

It’s funny that you speak up today. I had a dream about you last night. It was really rather strange. I came looking for you at your apartment. Bear with me, this was a dream. I was standing outside of your apartment door, and I heard some giggling. So, I go to open the door and some boy is already opening it for me. He smiled, and I smiled and said rather cheerfully, “Well, HI!! Is Benny here?” He chuckled and pointed up to the ceiling. Which meant to me that you were on the roof.

So, I started walking down the hall and passed a set of double doors, or at least that’s what I call them. I heard your voice from behind them, so I opened them. The room was kind of like a banquet hall, but smaller. Chairs lined the walls, and there were tables set up kind of like a bar in the back. And there was a guy dressed like a bartender at a wedding setting up something behind the table. There were windows, too, that let only a dim light show through the dusty, particled air.

You and a girl with longish light brown hair had pulled two chairs away from the wall and were sitting there, in the fading light, talking. As I entered you both looked up at me and both smiled. I felt odd, needless to say, and the girl gave me an overly enthusiastic smile and wave and said, “HI!”

Instantly, I was sitting with you guys and you were both telling me about how you had this lingerie party at the suggestion of some guy she had met on the street. He had hosted the party. It was for both men and women. Kind of like a hosted orgy, as you two explained it. As it turned out, the guy that had hosted the party was a convicted murderer or serial killer, I don’t remember which, but I had been investigating the case earlier that day. (I was an investigator in this dream. I’ve never actually had a memorable career in my dreams). So, you told me more about this “party” and told me about the drugs that he had given you. “Like we were floating, up, up, and away…” is how the girl explained it to me. You sat next to her shaking your head, agreeing.

It seemed very odd to me that the two of you would be sitting in this room talking when your apartment was just down the hall. It also appeared to me that you two were still pretty intoxicated from whatever drug he had given you. Kind of like “New-age hippies”. That’s all I can remember about it. I made myself keep repeating the main parts this morning in my head so that I could remember enough to tell you about it…

Then there was a dream a girl I’ve called Eva (who is one hell of a story herself) which irked me as much as Elizabeth’s dream. The notes I took on the dream as she told me it (on 2/20/10) is as follows.

There was an entity in the house. While it frightened Eva’s mother, it didn’t toy with her, and she warned Eva against involving herself with it. It turns out that I was there, too; furthermore, I was being manipulated by this invisible entity. I was on the floor playing a board game, holding a small game piece, which was green, plastic lizard. Eva would look away and look back, and things always seemed to be changing in the background, one of the things was the closet door, which kept opening and closing. She wondered if I was moving so quickly that I could be doing these things under the influence of the entity. At one point she saw me stand up, game piece still in hand, walking away in an almost robotic manner.

Try as she might to convince others, no one believed her about the entity.

She went to the door and tried to hold it open, it was trying to push it closed, but it could not overpower her. She read a crumpled piece of paper in the closet that said, “You might as well give up.” She believed the entity was trying to discourage her. She suddenly had a flashback of a real event in her childhood; she couldn’t remember what it was, but it was some memory in which she displayed her inner strength. She wanted to communicate to me that I didn’t have to fall under its influence. She took me and brought me to an empty room, assuming that there was little it could make me do in there, but I kept banging my head against the closed door.

Next, we were in the basement, and I was atop a wooden structure, trying to light matches in futility, and she tried to stop me. She then brought me to the elevator, thinking that getting me out of there would stop the entity’s influence over me, but when the door opened the elevator wasn’t there. Her mother’s voice said, “I told you.”

The recurring theme is me being controlled, or in the very least under the influence of — something: a humanoid mantis, a drug, an invisible entity. The fact that one dream involved a mantis being and another more covertly referenced reptiles makes me think, of course, of the creatures I’ve encountered throughout my life and, again, there is the theme of robotic movements, not unlike the “kriya” I have been experiencing in meditation.

I’m not sure what any if it may suggest, if indeed it suggests anything — but it interests and concerns me nonetheless.