Alien abductions phenomenon summary
Alien abductions phenomenon,summary
Alien abduction phenomenon
Note: The so-called «alien abduction» phenomenon seems to be virtually defunct according to many researchers. In Jun-2002 Dr. Mark Rodeghier of CUFOS remarked that the number of abduction reports have been down and continuously declining over the last few years (compared to 1980s-1990s), despite much greater publicity and awareness. This has been stated by others, such as John Velez (comment) and The Mack Institute. However, Dr.D.Jacobs of ICAR in a 2007 interview suggested that he doesn’t see any significant change in numbers and that «since the change in 2003 any discussion of it is considered non-compliance» (SDI446 @ 1:27:20).
Summary: The abduction phenomenon is an umbrella term used to describe a number of assertions stating that alien beings (typically the ones popularly known as «Greys», but occasionally very tall (2.1m / 7ft) and slim «praying mantis»-like, and shorter (1m / 3ft) «reptilian» brown-skinned hooded beings are mentioned) take humans against their will, to an unknown environment (which they may perceive as a UFO), for «medical testing» with a focus on reproductive issues, after which they are returned to the same place they were taken from, with their memories clouded or erased (hence the «missing time»). The history of abduction reports seems to start in the 1960s. The 1980s brought a major degree of mainstream attention to the subject, in the USA. Stigma and self-doubt may be obstacles to more widespread study and/or reporting of the phenomenon, whatever its origins or explanation. Several abduction reports have been quite detailed and there is a persistent structure (what follows what) to them. Typically such memories are recovered under hypnosis, which has been the main point of contention. However, according to T.E.Bullard, PhD folklorist, «abduction reports bear extensive similarities to one another, no matter who investigates, how abductees recall the encounter and in what year or country the story originates.» (src: MUFON Journal Jun-1998) The mixture of social patterning, medical effects, the evident post-traumatic stress syndrome and the remarkable consistency of abduction reports all argue for a complex phenomenon, which cannot be reduced to simple perceptual contangion or individual psychopathology.
There are two schools of thought among proponents of the alien abduction phenomenon: The one championed by Hopkins and Jacobs argues that they are a physically real events. To liberally paraphrase the other, many people report having been abducted, and many folkloric legends refer to small magical creatures, but there is no corroborating physical evidence for first-hand accounts of alien abductions, therefore, the best explanation is that these events are real, but take place on a different plane of reality, and involve something which contemporary victims only interpret as aliens.
About 2% of the American public have had possible abduction-like experiences (questionable estimate taken from a 1991 Roper poll of 6,000 people, of which 119 answered «Yes» to 4 out of 5 «key indicator questions», rather than report actual alien abductions), other estimates put it at 0.3% of the population. Those who make the case that alien abductions are a physically real phenomenon, cite as evidence «scoop marks» (see google-images — layers of skin removed, similar to what doctors call «punch biopsy»), unexplained scars where people remember undergoing operations, missing pregnancies, leftovers of fluorescent substance found on bodies of claimants, «alien implants» (though per Prof.D.Prichard’s comments, none of the extracted objects has ever been proven to be of exotic origin) etc. Abduction researchers report that alien abductions occur within family lines, i.e. different members of the same families at different stages of their lives. Water connection: According to John Velez, who considers himself an abductee, and who over a period of 6 years had been in touch with 600-700 people via the quarterly meeting groups of B.Hopkins and D.Jacobs, «the frequency of abductess who live near water» was often brought up and «an awful lot of abductees who have memories of being taken underwater» (src: SDI#412 @ 45’30»)
«In all, by 1987, some 1200 North American abductions were filed under the name of the abductee; 600 to 700 narratives had been collected; 300 of these were carefully studied by the folklorist Thomas E. Bullard, Ph.D, with 103 considered by Bullard to be «high information cases.» Bullard’s comparative studies suggest that there is a persistent structure to Abduction Reports, with the same episodes recurring in invariant order in 80% of the «high information» narratives. «A single deviation accounts for failure of sequence in almost all of the remainder.» Bullard distinguishes eight episodes in alien abduction: Capture, Examination, Conference, Tour, Journey, Return, Aftermath.»
— extract from Close encounters of diverse kinds, Princeton University Press.
In 1992, a 5-day conference was held at M.I.T. to examine «the findings of various investigators studying people who report experiences of abductions by aliens, and the related issues of the phenomenon.» The conference was chaired by M.I.T.’s Professor of Physics David Pritchard and late Harvard Medical School Professor of Psychiatry John Mack. Alien Discussions: Proceedings of the Abduction Study Conference Held at M.I.T. Cambridge, Ma.
The conference was covered by a well-regarded journalist, C. D. B. Bryan, who avowed non-belief in alien abduction. After the Abduction Study Conference, Bryan conducted extensive interviews. The work was published in the book «Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind: A Reporter’s Notebook on Alien Abduction, UFOs, and the Conference at M.I.T.» (also audio cassette). At the end of a chapter reporting his interviews with two of the most credible «experiencers,» Bryan stated:
During the days immediately following the conference, I am struck by how my perception of the abduction phenomenon has changed: I no longer think it a joke. This is not to say I now believe UFOs and alien abduction are real — «real» in the sense of a reality subject to the physical laws of the universe as we know them — but rather that I feel something very mysterious is going on. And based as much on what has been presented at the conference as on the intelligence, dedication, and sanity of the majority of the presenters, I cannot reject out-of-hand the possibility that what is taking place isn’t exactly what the abductees are saying is happening to them. And if that is so, the fact that no one has been able to pick up a tailpipe from a UFO does not mean UFOs do not exist. It means only that UFOs might not have tailpipes. As Boston University astronomer Michael Papagiannis insisted, «The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.» (Bryan 1995, 230)
In my opinion as an abduction agnostic, the most illuminating review of abduction theories (ranging from the psycho-social to the literal) is «The abduction experience: A critical evaluation of Theory and Evidence» by psychologist and UFO researcher Prof. Stuart Appelle, Dept of Psychology, State University of New York College. It is also available in print from CUFOS – Journal of UFO Studies 6 (1995/1996) 29-78. Here’s the abstract:
«Prevalent hypotheses regarding the etiology of the abduction experience are examined, especially in regard to the existing evidence. Deception, suggestibility (fantasy-proneness, hypnotizability, false-memory syndrome), personality, sleep phenomena, psychopathology, psychodynamics, environmental factors, and event-level alien encounters are each considered as origins of the abduction experience. The data are discussed in terms of what is and is not consistent with theory, the concept of parsimony, and the need for converging lines of evidence in establishing linkages between fact and theory. On the basis of this analysis, it is argued that no theory yet enjoys enough empirical support to be accepted as a general explanation for the abduction experience. The concept of the abduction experience as a multicausal phenomenon is discussed, and suggestions for future research are provided.»
Abductions are a highly controversial subject. Even those who take an alien presence (as manifested by the UFO sightings) for granted, are often agnostics or skeptical on the subject of alien abductions. E.g. In the book «The abduction enigma» (also read blog), Kevin Randle (long-time Roswell investigator), Russ Estes and William Cone, write:
«Here’s what it all comes down to. There is not a single shred of evidence that alien abductions are taking place other than the tainted testimony of the abductees. The physical evidence to support the claims is nonexistent. What has been offered as proof has been eliminated through testing by objective scientists or additional research by unbiased investigators.» — p. 359
Long-time Ufo researcher Jacques Vallee has often attacked the abduction investigators and the practice of hypnosis. He thinks that hypnosis should never be performed by «Ufologists», but only by «trained hypnotists who should be provided with a list of questions by the Ufologists» because, as Vallee believes due to his «long-term interest in parapsychology, it’s a fact that hypnosis enhances thought-transference between the hypnotist and the witness» (src: Paracast 2008-03-08 @ 42min00).
Some contend that there may be more complex, terrestrial explanations, e.g. involving the US «Secret Government» and/or US Intelligence Establishment (what could be followups to CIA’s Project MKULTRA mind manipulation programmes of the 1950s and 1960s – more); others think we may be dealing with both alien and military abductions (MIL-ABs, ref Evidence for Military Kidnappings of alleged UFO Abductees by Professor Helmut Lammer, who is a space scientist with the Austrian Space Research Institute) or for TTL i.e. «Tagging, tracking, and locating», pursued by US DoD more) for counter-examination.
The following alien abduction researchers contend that alien abductions are real:
- Budd Hopkins (Intruders Foundation), investigating the issue since 1975 and has worked with over 500 abductees. He contends that «alien abductions» are a real physical phenomenon, citing «scoop marks», unexplained scars etc where abductees remember having undergone operations. It was largely due to Hopkins’ persistence that the Ufological community took notice of the abduction issue. Hopkins thinks that it’s an ongoing genetic experiment, that the abductions are the source of the UFO phenomenon, i.e. most times a UFO is seen, it marks the start or end of an abduction.
- David M Jacobs (International Center for Abduction Research – ICAR), PhD history professor, has been investigating alien abductions for over 20 years. In his 1998 book «The Threat: Secret Alien Agenda«, he suggests that we humans are «victims of a widespread program of physiological exploitation, with breeding and hybridization program«.Jacobs defines the debate between the «Realists» who argue that «beings from somewhere else are coming to the Earth to fulfill an unknown agenda of which the abduction of humans is central» and the «Positives» who demand nothing less than a revision of the concept of reality. Jacobs places himself in the former group, further defining his view of the phenomenon as «a complex and systematic program of the production of hybrids for an eventual integration into human society.» In the second group he places John Mack and others who think that abductions are «harbingers of the onset of positively transformational aliens» who had the best interests of humanity at heart. Once the problem is posed in this fashion, there is an added attack by Jacobs on the Positive scenario as «based on unproven metaphysical assumptions and incompetent hypnosis.»
The absorption theory: In a section detailing his findings on «Basic Alien Biology» he notes how aliens appear to never eat or excrete. He writes, «Until now, how aliens obtain fuel has been a mystery» (The Threat, 1998, p. 98) In a regression dated 6-Jul-1994, one of his abductees, Allison Reed, gave him «the key to the mystery». She sees a room full of tanks filled with liquid and she sees Greys bobbing around in them. One tells her that the tanks are for eating and sleeping. Jacobs infers the aliens obtain their fuel «by absorption through the skin rather than ingestion.» He observes this probably explains how alien fetuses survived in incubatoriums without umbilical cords. He adds a comment from southern Illinois abductee Diane Henderson (session 14-Jul-1994) that the liquid they float in was nutritious. Jacobs further reports Susan Steiner (session 9-Oct-1995) reported seeing nutrients brushed on the skin.
- Dr. John Mack (John Mack Institute) a Pulitzer prize winning professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (he passed away in 2004, hit by a drunk truck driver). Mack became fascinated with the abduction phenomenon in 1990 when he attended a lecture by Budd Hopkins. Mack quickly concluded that the abduction phenomenon was not mentally generated and therefore had an external reality. He undertook a full-scale examination of the phenomenon, to the detriment of his career at Harvard and to the scorn of his colleagues. Since 1990, he investigated 200 men and women who said they had encountered extraterrestrial beings. Mack arrived at the astounding conclusion that this was a phenomenon which was ‘real’, but which didn’t so much have its basis in the physical universe i.e. «nuts and bolts» (as per the conclusions of abduction researchers Budd Hopkins and David Jacobs) as it did in «spiritual realm» i.e. a different plane of reality, accessible only through a widening of conscious perception. This hypothesis is in stark opposition to the current scientific paradigm, which is based on the mechanistic assumption that consciousness is a by-product of a physical brain. PBS interview
- Abduction Information Center by John Velez. PBS-TV Nova interview
- Medical and Scientific Aspects to the Abduction Phenomena by Eve Frances Lorgen
- Dr. Leo Sprinkle, a University of Wyoming psychologist, became interested in the abduction phenomenon in the 1960s. For some years, he was probably the only academic figure devoting any time to studying abduction accounts. Sprinkle became convinced of the phenomenon’s reality and was perhaps the first to suggest a link between abductions and cattle mutilation. Eventually Sprinkle came to believe that he had been abducted by aliens in his youth; he was forced from his job in 1989.
- Thomas E. Bullard holds a doctorate in folklore from Indiana University, where he wrote his dissertation on UFOs. interview. In the 1980s, Bullard began a large-scale comparative analysis of about 300 alleged cases of alien abduction, some of them dating to the mid-1950s. His study was published in 1987 as «UFO Abductions: The Measure of a Mystery. Volume 1: Comparative Study of Abduction Reports.» A shorter-version of his study appeared in MUFON Journal Feb-1988.
- OPUS Organisation for Paranormal Understanding and Support
- Karla Turner
- Alien Jigsaw offers accounts of alien abduction and alien interaction.
- Whitley Strieber a horror novelist, describing his own personal experiences. He published a series of books (Communion, Confirmation, The Grays etc). Also see Will the Real Whitley Strieber Please Stand Up?
- Questionable book «Above Black: Project Preserve Destiny» by Dan Sherman, gives another perspective about the possible explanation behind abductions
and the skeptics (suggesting it’s «sleep paralysis» and misuse of hypnosis):
- Al Lawson PhD, who contends that alien abductions are archetypal fantasies involving belief or deception, in which the subject’s birth memories play a central role.
- Richard McNally, PhD, Harvard Psychologist. He thinks abductions are «sleep paralysis» and subsequently the product of fantasy and of suggestion. Supposedly, one typically awakes from a period of REM sleep with the body still paralyzed and incapable of movement. He stated that sleep paralysis is probably responsible for stories of succubi, incubi and other demons throughout the ages. These same experiences today are viewed through the filter of popular culture and stories of aliens, and so these days are reported as alien abductions.
- Working with McNally, Susan A Clancy PhD Harvard Psychologist, studied the abduction phenomenon and is a skeptic. She wrote «Abducted: How People Come to Believe They Were Kidnapped by Aliens» (Harvard University Press, 2005). Criticized by B. Hopkins, Jacobs and also S.Friedman and discussion who think she was highly biased and did sloppy work, getting even basic case facts (such as places and dates) wrong in her book.
- Carl Sagan on alien abductions
- Dr. Susan Blackmore on alien abduction (Nov-1994)
A sample of multi-witness abduction cases, (none of whom were abducted while asleep btw, to be explainable as «sleep paralysis»):
- Allagash case, 26-Aug-1976 Maine USA, 4 young men (ufoevidence)
- Travis Walton case, 5-Nov-1975 website
- Pascagula case 1973 (ufocasebook, nicap)
- Kelly Cahill, Australia
- Betty and Barney Hill
and single-person abductions:
In Biological Evidence Of An Alien Entity and DNA Technique For Assessing Claims Of Alien Abduction alleged alien biological evidence is analyzed. A more complete version of the story here.
Many abduction cases exist where alleged biological evidence has been reported. Such events lend themselves to an established forensic DNA profiling technique, which could help establish the credibility of such claims. Since most abduction cases imply a measure of unwanted assault on the victims of such experiences, a forensic approach towards verification of the alleged perpetrators is desirable. Since DNA is the only building block of life that we know, biological specimens recovered in alleged abduction cases would provide researchers with a clear point of comparison.
A key claim by many abduction researchers is that abductions involve some form of genetic agenda. This scenario would require compatibility between aliens and humans. The claims of sexual encounters are alleged to add further support to this scenario. This very element amongst the extraordinary range of fantastic claims made about abductions is one of major stumbling blocks to the credibility of abduction claims.
Mainstream science argues that if alien life exists it is unlikely to be compatible with human life. Hence any claims to the contrary, such as alien abductions, are regarded as absurd. Therefore this limited and focused DNA profiling technique goes to the very heart of one of key claims behind the alleged alien abduction agenda. It provides an opportunity for testing the credibility of such claims.
If such claims are true then there should be some compatibility in the DNA of alleged alien specimens, but some possible anomalies may be evident that would perhaps not be readily reconciled with measures of human DNA variability. One established way of undertaking this is to undertake such analysis with the goal to establish a precise DNA base sequence of mitochondrial hypervariable region I, spanning nucleotides 16,000 to 16,400 of mitochondrial DNA.
Such DNA is present in hundreds of copies within each human cell, and therefore acts as an easily amplified genetic marker for the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), even in moderately degraded samples, i.e. measuring the DNA variability beyond the documented «human consensus» of the region of DNA hypervariability.
This technique has been tested in one abduction case to date, in an investigation undertaken by this writer of a biological sample – a blonde hair – implicated in the abduction milieu of a Sydney man, Peter Khoury, during 1992:
«Strange Evidence», International UFO Reporter (IUR), Spring, 1999 issue, Volume 24, No 1, pgs. 3-16, 31.
«UFO ABDUCTIONS & SCIENCE – A CASE STUDY OF STRANGE EVIDENCE», Australasian Ufologist, Vol.3, No.3, 3rd, 1999, pgs. 43-56.
The original analysis confirmed the hair came from someone who was biologically close to normal human genetics, but of an unusual racial type – a rare Chinese Mongoloid type – one of the rarest human lineages known, that lies further from the human mainstream than any other except for African pygmies and aboriginals.
There was the strange anomaly of it being blonde to clear instead of black, as would be expected from the Asian type mitochondrial DNA. The original DNA work was done on the shaft of the hair. Fascinating further anomalies were found in the root of the hair. Two types of DNA were found depending on where the mitochondrial DNA testing occurs, namely confirming the rare Chinese type DNA in the hair shaft and indicating a rare possible Basque/Gaelic type DNA in the root section.
This case confirms the utility of the DNA forensic approach, however the real challenge ahead for researchers is to determine if these anomalies are both valid and significant. To do this, researchers in the controversial area of abductions should cooperate with a testing programme focused on this specific area of DNA profiling. Testing of a significant number of legitimate samples would provide an opportunity for validation of the unusual anomalies found to date. The further results would add to the database of biological evidence of alleged alien specimens.
Such a strategy could help to determine if aliens are a biological reality and if indeed any are visiting our planet and abducting humans. Perhaps such information could also provide for an interesting perspective on the many stories of Nordic type beings implicated in UFO abduction and contact cases.
The Anomaly Physical Evidence Group (APEG) has been formed to focus attention on biological strategies in abduction investigations. Preliminary funding has facilitated a small laboratory presence addressing this exciting area.
Anyone who believes they have legitimate biological evidence implicated in UFO and abduction experiences are encouraged to contact the APEG through Bill Chalker. Any such evidence will need to be assessed for its potential as credible evidence warranting the cost, resources and time involved in this DNA focused study.
The APEG can be contacted through this writer at P.O. Box 42, West Pennant Hills, NSW, 2125, Australia or via firstname.lastname@example.org www.theozfiles.com
A relevant case of human-alien interaction was of Antonio Villas Boa in Brazil (who later became a lawyer, married and had four children. He died in 1992, and stuck to the story of his claimed abduction for his entire life).
Note: I really am an agnostic about the «alien abduction» issue and the supposed hybrid-breeding program. My primary reservation is we’re dealing with anecdotal witness testimony, produced from a very small number «UFO abduction researchers» (Hopkins, Jacobs, Mack etc).
- Mack: «Passport to the Cosmos», «Abductions: Human Encounters with Aliens (Crown, 1994)»
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