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Classic Mysteries—Alternate Perceptions Magazine, July 2016

The seldom told story of Muhammad Ali as a UFO buff!

by: Brent Raynes

Muhammad Ali, born January 17, 1942, in Louisville, Kentucky, won a gold medal in the light heavyweight division in the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome. He soon became known as one of the leading heavyweight boxers of the 20th century, nicknamed “the Greatest,” who engaged in historic boxing matches with such notables as Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier, and George Foreman.

Described as a controversial and polarizing figure, he was in addition an activitist, an actor, a musician, wrote two autobiographies, came to become a follower of the Sunni Islam faith, and helped support the cause of racial integration, in the footsteps of his mentor Malcolm X.

Following his retirement in 1981, Ali devoted his time and energy to religious and charitable causes. In 1984, he was diagnosed with Parkinson's syndrome, which doctors felt was connected with boxing-related brain injuries. Sadly, as the world now knows, Ali then living in Scottsdale, Arizona, left us at the age of 74, on June 3rd of this year.

What very few people know about the life of legendary Muhammad Ali though is that he was a hard-core UFO buff and no one is better qualified to deliver the scoop on this intriguing revelation than the long time UFO researcher, author, editor and publisher Timothy Green Beckley, formerly a stringer for The National Enquirer who interviewed and spoke with numerous other celebrities, including William Shatner, John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and David Bowie.

Tim was never shy about asking celebrities about their beliefs in UFOs and the paranormal, and whether they had ever had any personal experiences themselves. “We never did talk a great deal about UFOs,” Tim recalled of David Bowie. “He did tell me that he believed in UFOs and was interested in the aliens and stuff like that. Rumor has it that he had UFO sightings in England while growing up and then was actually an editor of a UFO newsletter when he was a teenager, but I don't know what that newsletter was.” As for John Lennon, Lennon claimed he had seen a UFO above New York City. “At one point, with May Pang we did a couple radio shows discussing John Lennon's UFO sighting up on The Dakota because she was living with him at the time. He called her out to the balcony and they watched these strange lights in the sky.”

William Shatner had shared a wild UFO tale with Tim as he did with other reporters years ago, but as eventually revealed in Shatner's autobiography Up Till Now (2008), his tale was just that. A made up tale. The tabloid headlines “Shatner Saved by Alien” simply weren't true.

However, here's the very real story of Muhammad Ali's deep interest in UFOs as shared with us in an interview with Timothy Green Beckley. The complete interview can be found in my book On The Edge of Reality: Dream Weavers – The Mastering of Time and Space (2009).

Tim told me:

Muhammad Ali was a big UFO buff actually. We went down to his home at Cherry Hill (NJ) and he wanted us to bring slides and movies, because he wanted to see if it was like anything he had seen in the sky.

He claimed over twenty-one sightings and he tied it in with his religious beliefs. I first met him afer the Daily News ran a report about Muhammad Ali sighting two bright lights over Central Park while he was out jogging one morning. Harold [Salkin] was a big promoter and he'd get on the phone and call anybody and Harold got Angelo Dundee on the phone and said, “We'd like to come around and talk to the Champ about his UFO sightings.” So Dundee said, “Well, he's out there jogging through the park around 6 a.m. Come and join him.” So we got out there at 6 a.m. And I was in a little better shape in those days and jogged maybe a quarter of a mile with the Champ and he told me about his UFO sightings and so forth and invited us down to his home in Cherry Hill. We went there a couple of times to show him the UFO movies and pictures, whatever he wanted, and he even did a drawing for us, which I've used in my book, UFOs Among The Stars, of one of the UFOs that he had seen which looks exactly like an Adamski craft. I think he was into the Adamski ships in those days. He must have seen an Adamski photo or two or read an Adamski book and that was his cup of tea.

He had also seen this huge mother ship parked up above his training camp in Deer Park, Pennsylvania. He invited us up to see if we could see it as well, which we never did, but also took Uri Geller with us. Ali was at first interested in meeting Geller, but Ali is the type of person who is not going to share the spotlight with anyone, even if there's only three people around he's the one who wants the attention, and I can't say that Uri is too much different than that either. He likes a little bit of attention as well as all of us do, you know.

Anyway, we took Uri up there and Ali knew who he was. I guess he had seen him on the Johnny Carson Show. It turned out that Ali is an amateur magician so he got his tricks out, like the one where you cut the rope in half and you magically put it back together, and a couple of other tricks with a ring and such that I don't remember exactly, but Uri got a little bit peeved at that because he thought that maybe Ali was trying to put him down. So we kind of slipped away from the main group and went over to this big rock where he (Ali) would stand up on the rock or next to the rock and ring a bell that was on the rock when he wanted people to gather around. Anyway, there was a guy there who was Ali's sparing partner, and I wrote this up in UFOs Among The Stars and in The National Enquirer, and I had a photo of the guy, but anyway this sparing partner of Ali's had this medallion around his neck like a St. Jude or St. Christopher's medal. It was pretty heavy. It wasn't a cheap medal. It was a piece of silver. So Uri takes his thumb and he pushes his thumb into the medal and takes it away maybe two or three seconds later and there's an impression in the guy's medal, like he had indented it with his thumb.

That seemed to be a little bit beyond a little magic trick. He didn't take the medal off of the guy's neck or anything. He just pressed it and there's an indention in the medal obvious for all to see.

Then Belinda Ali, who I believe was Ali's second wife, was curious about this more so than Ali seemed to be that day and Uri did an experiment with her where he took his hand and put it over a ring that she was wearing, and I couldn't tell you exactly what kind of a ring it was. I don't think it was an expensive diamond or anything like that. He put his hand over it and started kind of touching on her hand, but nothing too overt. He wasn't touching the stone. He didn't have any utensils in his hand or anything like that, and then after a few seconds he said, “Let me know if you feel anything strange or anything different.” And then after a few seconds into it she said, “Ouch, my hand is getting warm,” and then a few more seconds after that he took his hand away, the ring itself was still there but the stone inside the setting was gone. So how he accomplished that I don't know, and as far as I know she never got the stone back. She seemed pretty awed by that.

So is he an entertainer? Yes, in his own way. Is he a magician? No. I think whatever he's doing he's pretty legitamate about it. Maybe not a hundred percent of the time, but whenever I saw him I don't think that there was any overt attempt to create a fraud there.

Tim Beckley's YouTube Channel
Over 100 posted video and audio movies/interviews

Thursday, February 22, 2024