Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
But will they come when you do call for them?
William Shakespeare, Henry IV
Edgar Mitchell, the American astronaut who flew to the moon and back, was also a great explorer of inner space. Dr. Mitchell was also interested in the UFO phenomenon, which, since 2017 has finally been acknowledged after decades of cover-up in mainstream publications like the New York Times.
Mitchell’s research, which culminated in the publication of Beyond UFOs, is explicit about combining ufology and parapsychology under the unifying banner of consciousness studies. Bringing them together is natural enough for one simple reason; the literature of UFOs and alien encounter is shot through with incidents of paranormality: telepathy, levitation, dematerialization, supernormal healing, and so on. Unexplained aerial phenomena are a part of, and connect with, religious history.
Mitchell’s model opens to an expanded research program. The editors of Beyond UFOs (Hernandez, Klimo, Schild) have tapped into a huge, sprawling, and often hidden resource of information that the government and scientific culture have been shy about confronting.
Beyond UFOs (2018)is the first volume in a series dealing with a powerfully expanded anomaly-database. However, early researchers were aware of the paranormal dimension of ufology. Kenneth Ring and Raymond Fowler studied cases of people who had near-death experiences and close encounters with alien intelligence. Some near-death experiences apparently open people to having contact with angels, aliens, and related agencies of transcendence. Some experiencers claim is that the visitations are meant to accelerate human evolution—a timely idea, in light of today’s many worldwide crises.
One fact has yet to fully penetrate the consciousness of people on Earth. Human technologies have resulted in polluting and over-heating the planet, which has set into motion forces that threaten life and civilization everywhere. Without a united human response, all these problems will progressively worsen. President Biden is right on this. A radical change of prevailing human values, of attitudes and lifestyles are necessary, if we hope to avert an unimaginable catastrophe.
Rey Hernandez has invited me to assist in sorting out the papers that will be used in subsequent volumes of this series. The volumes will be about presenting the extraordinary data of contemporary experiencers and the ongoing effort to articulate an evolved paradigm of the human adventure.
Another fact that has yet to penetrate. People everywhere are having experiences that shatter many assumptions about our everyday world. Sometimes it seems that some people are crazy or that most of us are very superficially acquainted with what we call ‘reality’. William Blake once said that where some people just see the sunrise, he saw “the sons of God leaping for joy.”
But here’s the main point. As our minds change so does our world. The world that we experience is both screened out and magnified by our beliefs, memories, and feelings at any given moment. Learning something new, acquiring a new concept, realizing a new possibility can alter our existential modus operandi. I’m saying all this in light of the eighty-five or so papers I’ve been reading and trying to sort out for publication. More people are having anomalous experiences than we might suspect, everyday folks as well as people expert in academic and scientific knowledge and practical wisdom.
In many instances I find that once the psychic door opens, traffic with the extraordinary increases exponentially. For whatever reason, there seems to be a class of humans that report encounters with the presence of super-humanity. It’s as though two radically distinct modalities of perception are emerging, one of our everyday world, another of a superordinary world.
In the mass of reportage that I’m surveying, there are accounts not only of people being visited by aliens but also of people who attempt to initiate contact with these exotic beings. That would of course shift the phenomenon into a different gear we could call experimental—Glendower’s attempt to call the spirits from the vasty deep!
As far as where I have been led in my explorations, there are two steps I would single out. The first makes the second possible. Our minds are not sealed up in our sensory world nor in our rationally inferred universe. We seem in fact to inhabit an extrasensory universe and possess the intuitive faculties to explore a much wider universe of consciousness. Once we begin to grasp our expanded interior mental life, we can see how it might be possible to have encounters with strange beings.
The first step is to appreciate that our personal minds are subliminally part of a greater mind. This entails the second possibility that we can make contact with the greater mind. I keep finding accounts of people who claim to have called down the spirits and indeed the UFOs. There are folks all over the world who say they have learned to consciously induce encounters of the supernormal kind. They call upon beings of high strangeness—and, say many, they come!
To hear of and read about all this occurring in the 21st century is a bit surprising. Nevertheless, it remains in the world at large. In my book on miracles (Smile of the Universe), I described many striking examples of phenomena that seem like part of a dialogue between some man or woman and something we’re modestly calling “a greater reality.”
This may sound familiar to many religious believers. But the idea may sound fresh to the many spiritual orphans wandering about. The big idea is that we can strike up meaningful dialogue with beings and forms of intelligence that common sense and materialist science may look upon as impossible.
But my experience and my research speak to a future of extraordinary possibilities. Our lives have potentials we can scarcely begin to imagine. To answer Hotspur’s question , “Will they come?” (when you call the spirits from the vasty deep). I would answer, “They just might! And you better be ready!”
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