Reality Checking—Alternate Perceptions Magazine, August 2017
Our Struggles to Discern and Agree on Paranormal Reality
by: Brent Raynes
Sometimes the month rolls around and before I know it its time to churn out yet another Reality Checking column, full of fresh new and significant insights and information....right? Well, all is in the eyes of the beholder, of course, and while I am always hopeful that folks will perceive it that way, there is little doubt that the subject matter I address and touch upon in each column will affect each reader in a different way. As individuals we react and respond in various and different ways to different things. What is reasonable and thought-provoking to one person may be seen as poppycock and rather outrageous to yet another.
Of course, it's fairly obvious that our readers are the kind of people who are interested in unique, different and alternative subjects and perspectives. I dare say that the majority of our readers share this characteristic in common. From the beginning of this magazine's merger with Greg Little back in 1993, we strived to have some variety that would at least resonate partially with alternative minded people from various perspectives and backgrounds of interest. Obviously, one can't please everyone.
However, we do our best, and we also strive to obtain data, as often as possible, from original sources, from our own research and investigations when possible. We don't want our readers to become exasperated or bored because we've thrown a lot of rehashed, over exposed ideas and stories at them, or material that seems to lack any sort of credibility. There's certainly too much of that much talked about “fake news” and questionable information in circulation out there already.
We may not always get it all perfectly right and accurate, but we're sincere and striving to do the best job that we can. We're certainly always open to other points of view and ideas, only asking that such exchanges be carried forth in a constructive and civil way. As Greg told me in a few personal dialogues we had had over the years, “We can agree to disagree.” On Facebook and other social media sites I've seen a frequent and disturbing tendency for many to disagree in very harsh, hostile, and emotional language. Such behavior accomplishes very little of a productive nature.
We're all going to bring to the table our best personal understanding for whatever subject matter we're trying to address. Many of my columns touch upon UFO-related phenomena, which may include kundalini experiences, near-death episodes, out-of-body travel, cryptids like Bigfoot and Mothman, shamanic experiences, precognitive visions, and a variety of other reported puzzling phenomena that falls under the broad umbrella of the so-called “paranormal,” which a growing number of researchers (including many with Ph.D's) are beginning to suspect fall under the equally broad and mysterious umbrella of quantum physics, while the old guard mainstream ufology still sees UFOs as “nuts and bolts” classical physics with all of the rest as unrelated and of separate categories. Of course, then there is the group that sees it all as nonsense and not worth giving it the time of day.
Alternate Perceptions has a very small and selective audience at present. Meanwhile, it competes with thousands of other sites on the internet that provide information on a vast range of similar subject matter.
Since last year, I've had the pleasure of being introduced to a good number of academics who are taking a serious look at the UFO contact experience, it's many “paranormal” components, and the potential application of quantum physics to address these many “spooky” reports. A book is in the works, entitled “Beyond UFOs: The Science of Contact with Non-Human Intelligence,” with contributions from scientists like Harvard astrophysicist Dr. Rudy Schild, sensory neuroscientist Dr. Robert Davis, MIT and Princeton educated physicist Dr. Claude Swanson, Ph.D candidate at UC Berkeley Dr. Rey Hernandez, professor of psychology Dr. Jon Klimo, physician Dr. Joseph Burkes, and others, along with contributions from quite a number of dedicated researchers like Kathleen Marden, Giorgio Piacenza, Mary Rodwell, Rosemary Ellen Guiley, Brad Steiger, and yours truly, honored to announce a chapter I am to do on “the History of UFO Contact Paradigms: From indigenous people's contact with 'star beings' and spirits to the 1950s Contactee Movement, to the modern contact paradigms...”
Which means I will need soon to put the finishing touches to a book on John Keel that I'm working on, an author whose work in the UFO field greatly influenced and inspired my own involvement and direction in this field, a book tentatively to be entitled (at the present time) “John A. Keel: The Man, The Myth, and the Mystery.” I just informed Rey Hernandez that I needed to finish up on this project before I would be able to really focus well on my chapter for “Beyond UFOs.” He thoughtfully replied: “As you know Brent, Keel was light years ahead of the game when it comes to asking the 'right questions.' While Ufologists were out in the fields with their geiger counters he was questioning the phenomena itself.”
I certainly agree. Keel was a real pioneer in ufology who shook things up big time. He strived to introduce professionalism and integrity into the field, though his ideas, his insights and areas of investigation and research were far ahead of the majority of “ufologists” back in 1966 and years immediately following that time. Even today, many of the things Keel wrote and talked about are still hard for many to grasp.
All of the authors working on “Beyond UFOs” are working with the Dr. Edgar Mitchell Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial and Extraordinary Experiencers (FREE). The book is expected to be published and available by April 1, 2018.
Here is an abbreviated summary posted by FREE on this project:
"BEYOND UFOS: THE SCIENCE OF CONSCIOUSNESS AND CONTACT WITH NON HUMAN INTELLIGENCE". After 4 years of conducting the world’s first comprehensive multi-language and international academic research study on UFO related Contact with Non Human Intelligence (NHI), The FREE Foundation will finally be publishing its historic new book in April of 2018.
The Dr. Edgar Mitchell FREE Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial and Extraordinary Experiencers, or FREE, a 501c3 academic research foundation, comprised of 11 Ph.D. physicists, scientists, neuroscientists and lay researchers, will be publishing a book analyzing the data of our FREE Experiencer Research Study.
We will have more than 21 authors writing 22 chapters on the historic findings which totally contradict much of what is circulating in the field of Ufology. This book will soon be the authority for UFO related contact with NHI. This historic research will establish a new paradigm for viewing the phenomena of UFO Contact with NHI, not by associating it with UFOs, but by associating it via Consciousness and the Contact Modalities (contact via UFOs, NDEs, OBEs, Spirits/Ghosts, Channeling, Remote Viewing, Orbs, Hallucinogenic Journeys, ESP, Telepathic Communications, etc).
FREE hypothesizes that all "Paranormal” Contact with NHI is interrelated and might be one phenomenon instead of separate phenomena and that advanced theories of "Consciousness" can begin to reveal this relationship.
FREE also believes that cross comparative research on the “Experiencers” of the Contact Modalities is the key to understand the mystery of what is Consciousness-- what is the true nature of our reality.
More information can be found at the FREE website: www.experiencer.org