Mod+ 228. Mary Rodwell Advocates for Alien Contactees

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by alex.tsakiris, Nov 5, 2013.

  1. Alex

    Alex New

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  2. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Alex's question at the end of the podcast:

    One group of people say alien abduction is actual abduction: a crime and a violation of human rights, and believing otherwise is an aspect of the mind control of the experience. Another group (including Mary Rodwell) say it's a transformative spiritual experience.

    What is your opinion?
     
  3. EthanT

    EthanT Member

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    I didn't get to listen to the interview yet, but John Mack made a fairly persuaive case for the latter, in line with Rodwell apparently. However, he doesn't negate the former position, as it would appear that the alien abudtion phenemenon like many transformative experiences can start out as a negative experience. We tend to fear the unkown. So, I'm not sure the two views are mutually exclusive.
     
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  4. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Alex, this is from the interview transcript:

    But if I was going to compare the central themes and ideas from the near-death experience to the alien abduction experience, there are some unresolvable for me issues there

    In the near-death experience there isn’t any trauma, really. There isn’t the kind of trauma we’re talking about here. There isn’t the deception at all. We have to acknowledge that there is a deception in the alien encounter. There’s this mind control thing; there’s this forgetting thing. I don’t remember any of it and six months later I see something on TV and it triggers me and I’m falling apart. There’s none of that.

    Thing is, we do have reports of traumatic NDEs--the hellish ones, for example. I think she said the transformative abduction experiences amounted to around 70% of cases, so they are in the majority. So maybe there isn't such a stark difference between the two kinds of experiences. Also, one wonders whether anyone has worked with NDErs who've had negative experiences and helped them see them as transformative, as she claims to have done with abductee experiencers.
     
  5. EthanT

    EthanT Member

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    Could be a relation here too. I suspect some hellish NDEs may have transformed into something positive if allowed to continue. I often use Eben Alexander's NDE as an example. The Earth Worm Eye View sounded pretty hellish in my opinion. That alone wouldn't have made him tell a very positive story. It's what happened afterwards that really counted.

    Likewise, I bet many of the 70% of transformative cases of alien abduction you mention started out negative. It was only through continuing the experience that it eventually turned positive. Ones that start out early in childhood are usually positive, then turn negative around adolescence, before becoming positive later on. So, I think there is more complexity here than perhaps meets the eye, at first
     
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  6. EthanT

    EthanT Member

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    Actually, even on the deception, some abductees have said they learned later it wasn't really deception. Rather, they were being given what they could handle, when they could handle it. Likewise, with NDEs, people from various cultures seem to encounter what they expect to encounter (with of course, the same underlying themes). It seems in both cases, you sort of get what your consciousness can handle, or is even capable of perceiving, for that matter. However, there are obviously distinct differences too, but I think we should expect that.
     
  7. Jules

    Jules New

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    What interests me is how accounts of abductions and encounters differ so much. It reminds me of NDErs accounts of God-construct encounters. That something important is going on here seems likely, but the way to understand it may be by seeing the parallels with some mystical experiences which combine physical reality with the psychic or mystical realm pathways. Maybe there is a clue here to the relationship between Mind and matter. It seems when there is no prescribed way to process the "data" of the experience (because it lies outside normal), our consciousness interprets it with culturally defined archetypes. I'm reminded of the ames room illusion. What interests me is what provokes these experiences if we think of them as being para-physical? NDErs have a "syndrome" of characteristics which describe them. There is significant overlap with Kundalini syndrome. (Wiki for once is a useful reference here). So do these "experiencers" exhibit similar characteristics? Has anyone studied this? Some do report the "mystical union" state of consciousness. I remember an earlier interview with a counsellor on Skeptiko saying this is part of the experience for some. If we are looking at this using a normal investigative model we are probably missing the point and for that matter the wonder.

    Jules
     
  8. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    The Ames illusion:

     
  9. Steve

    Steve Member

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    I tend to believe it is the latter, if we allow it to be ? Our 21st century moral code might lead us to believe that it is a violation, but maybe 'you have to be cruel to be kind' and the alien beings have a much more advanced code than ours,possibly millions of years more advanced ? Maybe even if they do cause pain ,or even death ( they seem to have no problem killing animals ?), they know much more than we do about the spiritual aspects of us as beings, and the implications are not as severe as we fear.

    Then again, maybe they're the evil drug dealers of the future !
     
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  10. Alex

    Alex New

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    agreed. of course, we can turn this around and ask questions about the "reality" we are perceiving from. i.e. we always come back to this as the base experience... but maybe (as all mystics throughout time have told us) this is an illusion and the homebase for our conscious experience lies beyond this realm. the evidence for this is pretty clear in the NDE experience. the brain is not part of the NDE reality (it's gone) but the experience continues.
     
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  11. Jules

    Jules New

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    My son's speciality is pure maths. He tells me the maths of the universe has eerie parallels with the holographic model. Interestingly when it comes to a debate between a scientist and a mathematician it's always the mathematician that wins (or at least that's what he tells me).

    This Sunday the newest cinema in town is rescreening The Matrix. The family are going - seems appropriate to the discussion somehow...
     
  12. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    It just occurred to me that. according to Wikipedia, alien abductions are most reported in English-speaking countries. One wonders if there's a counterpart here to reincarnation stories being most reported in the East, and to different cultural flavourings of NDEs. One could even tie it in with morphic resonance at the cultural level.

    I'm definitely with Mary Rodwell on this, even though till quite recently I dismissed the phenomenon: I think it was investigating John Mack's work that persuaded me there was a spiritual element in at least some cases. Tom Campbell has a plausible-sounding explanation, I think. The realm of Source consciousness wants us to question our conviction that this "virtual reality" is actually real. However, communication is via symbols that best represent greater truths. It's not unnatural that the symbol set should vary from culture to culture. In NDEs, "guides" can come in the form of religious figures, angels, respected relatives, etc. If abductee phenomena can be similarly transformative, maybe they come in the form of alien beings, which is close enough to being at least a possibility that for some people it's more likely to be accepted as significant.

    It seems to me that those who take abduction experiences at face value and condemn the "aliens" as devilishly devious human rights abusers fall into the same trap of literalism found in some religionists.

    Edit: It's also notable that there can be physical signs on the body accompanying both reincarnation and alien abduction stories. Someone mentioned Kundalini experiences, which also come with physical effects on the body: perhaps they are similar, except that they might be more common in people already consciously seeking the spiritual; perhaps such people don't have need of such literal-seeming symbols?
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2013
  13. EthanT

    EthanT Member

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    As far as the Kundalini experience, I think some common human encounters can perhaps hint at what is going on here. Every one has probably heard it said that when they are around an uplifting person, they feel uplifted. And, of course, a downer person brings you down. Hanging out with a Feynman or an Einstein for a week, would probably open up somebody's eyes to a whole new world. For an extreme, perhaps mythical example, take Saul's encounter of Jesus on the road to Damascus. That was like BAM, Jesus shows up in all his glory, and the dude is so transformed by the experience he has to change is name to Paul - he is no longer the same person.

    I think just coming into contact with a higher, more powerful consciousness, which the aliens seem to be, can have the effect of transforming our consciousnesses, enabling experiences like the Kundalini experience. Likewise, with NDE'rs. They come into contact with a higher place of existence, or a higher plane of consciousness, and it transforms them to sometimes incredible extents. I've heard of folks having their first kundalini experience when they come into contact with a group of like-minded highly spiritual individuals, as if just hooking up with these folks and being around their energy is what took them over the edge to having the experience.

    This can also suggest that it could even be dangerous for the "aliens" to just show up, land and start interacting with us. There is no guarantee the transformative experience has to be positive, especially if one is not ready for it.

    I discussed this on my blog with respect to the dual alien/human identity that is often reported. Just my speculations on what that might be about:

    "Upon reading this list, the spiritual, or consciousness expanding aspect, of the abduction phenomenon becomes obvious. In regards to the double human/alien identity, which is a difficult one to swallow (as if the rest isn't!), I think there is a reasonable explanation. In yogic lore and other traditions, unity consciousness is mentioned, where subject and object merge and a state of Oneness is experienced. I think an encounter with an advanced consciousness, such as with these alien beings, could potentially force this experience upon a person, before they are ready to fully interpret, or understand, the experience, thereby creating a mistaken dual human/alien identity. As I mentioned above, abductees are often afraid to look into the eyes for fear of "a loss of self". Or, imagine suddenly becoming fully psychic and hearing others thoughts and experiencing others emotions, as clearly and distinctly as your own. Could this become disorienting, causing one to lose track of who is originating which thoughts and feelings? Could it serve to bring about an identity crisis of sorts? Thinking along these lines could perhaps explain why aliens "haven't landed on the White House lawn", as it is popularly phrased. It could very well be dangerous for humanity as a whole to interact with such an advanced consciousness at this point in time. It could be they currently prefer this lower level of interaction, which sends a message (through the mouths of abductees) and encourages a development of consciousness (which is already underway!) within humanity, helping to lead us down a path to where we will be ready to meet them "face to face". All speculation, of course!"
     
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  14. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    I wonder if Feynman or Einstein had the same effect on people with no interest in science/maths - i.e. if it was a consciousness thing.

    Mary Rodwell comes across very well, and I do agree that there is something about the UFO phenomenon that doesn't seem just technological - i.e. that it is connected with phenomena such as NDE's etc.

    David
     
  15. EthanT

    EthanT Member

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    Well, that one might not have been the best example/analogy, as far as the consciousness expanding thing. But, Feynman was definitely known to inspire all kinds of folks, whether originally interested in science, or not. Not sure about Einstein. But, I haven't met a physicist yet, that doesn't like somthing about the guy ;-)
     
  16. Alex

    Alex New

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    yea, interesting parallels... not sure where they cross. red pill in hand :)
     
  17. Alex

    Alex New

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    more wiki goofiness. simply not true in any meaningful way.


    not sure I can get there... feels too much of a reflection of our present techno-centered culture.
     
  18. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    You may be right...do you have a reference to something that says it's as common outside English-speaking countries?
    I don't necessarily buy into Campbell's metaphor of a meta-reality that informs the virtual reality in which we are currently living, and yes, it's a "techno-centred" metaphor. To be fair to Campbell, though, I put it rather simply. The idea can be put in terms of other metaphors, and as Campbell himself says, words are metaphors. "Dog", "hund", "chien", aren't hairy things that lick your face and crap on pavements. We are totally immersed in metaphor: this post is a metaphor, as was yours.

    What he says is the equivalent of saying that, through the grace of God, we may receive experiences that challenge us and offer opportunities to evolve, which is our purpose here, because as manifestations of God, that's how He Himself evolves. There you go. I put it in terms of religious/spiritual metaphor, and quite possibly someone else will feel as queasy about that as you do about Campbell's preferred metaphorical framework.

    We gotta use these damn things called words, unfortunately. Esperanto, anyone?
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2013
  19. Alex

    Alex New

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    as a stasrting point consider:
    http://www.skeptiko.com/ardy-sixkil...f-american-indian-contact-with-ufo-phenomena/
    where they've so intergrated the exper into the culture that aksing of the question is a non-starter.

    you'll find many more if you did into the alien contact research.


    agreed.
     
  20. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Yeah, I just scanned the transcript, and fair enough, it relates to North American indians, but I didn't notice anything that went back before settlement by Europeans. I'll investigate further, though.
    Yeah. It's a kind of isomorphism, and you find it in many different variants of folk tales and myths. Think about this stuff for long enough and you realise that everything is to some degree folk tale/myth, not excluding modern science. That's one good reason for having to be an agnostic and keep an open mind.
     

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