Mod+ Discuss: Getting to the Nuts and Bolts: Coaxing Transformation out of the Paranormal Closet

#1
Clinical Psychotherapist Jerry Gaura has posted an interesting piece:

Are alien abductions real? Are they dreams, pathology, or crossover phenomenon, or perhaps evidence of our greater disconnection from a mulitdimensional reality? Recently I had to take a step back and remind myself why I'm so fascinated by this subject matter. Honestly, I have to do this often as it's easy to lose track when you're studying a topic as strange as alien abduction. Anomalous phenomenon, and all things lumped into this ambiguous meta category called the "paranormal" has evolved to become a convenient catchall for a slew of undefinable and uncharacterizable processes in our culture. As a result, part of the job now requires untangling this knot of phenomenological castaways that now dance like shadows in the light of our increasing technological and societal complication. ...Which is wordy way of saying the process can get pretty confusing at times.

http://parapsychotherapyx.blogspot.com/2013/10/coaxing-transformation-out-of.html
 
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chuck.drake

#2
Interesting, but nothing really groundbreaking. Isn't it really just an encapsulation of one of the mythic tributaries behind this whole story? The "good" side?

Maybe when Mack said from beyond the grave, "It isn't what we thought it was" he was really saying they aren't really aliens. It is really just that same "force" that has been pushing some of us into initiation and transformation since the beginning of humanity. "They" just apply a contemporary filter, a "skin" on the experience that is relevant to us.

I'm loving the "quotation" marks lately!
 
#3
Interesting, but nothing really groundbreaking...
couple things I found interesting from Jerry's clinical therapists perspective... hoping he will join us to discuss further:


Determining which experiences are 'the real thing' as opposed to reactions to 'the real thing' is no easy task. Tail-chasing issues like these are actually quite common in paranormal research. These obstacles appear frequently to diffuse and frustrate progress, which begs another question; could these experiences be pointing to a process where the questions become more important than the answers themselves? This of course represents another level of the paranormal rabbithole - but as a concept perhaps gains some credence when considering the impact of Newtonian-Cartisian- paradigm upon our culture.
These "no way out" scenarios emerge repeatedly to the point of becoming central themes in the abduction experience. Beyond the abductees world being blown up from the impact of these jarring experiences, there's an additional wave of personality deconstruction as the entire paradigm containing the abductee's version of self implodes.
 
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chuck.drake

#4
Those questions are getting into the Whitely Strieber territory. That it is the enigma itself that is changing us--"evolving" us, or altering our consciousness in some way.
 
#5
Those questions are getting into the Whitely Strieber territory. That it is the enigma itself that is changing us--"evolving" us, or altering our consciousness in some way.
yea, it's very slippery stuff, but I think we have to be open to it. kinda like the "are we co-creating HISTORY" thing... again, not sure what to do with it, but gotta consider it when jump into the "consciousness is primary, life is an illusion" territory.
 
#6
Thanks for the feedback. I agree nothing groundbreaking. But the point is not to be revolutionary, but to point out a larger pattern of resistance.

Here's the bottom line. It's not just experiences that are repeatedly overlooked. It's the function of transformation and transformation themes. There's the implication of a function with alien abductions that CAN be addressed, but yet we repeatedly bypass this in the research. Why? I suspect science, psychology, and even the transpersonal psychology communities get stuck in the politics of upholding their belief systems just like everybody else. But what's crystal clear is none of our approaches currently fit. Science slam dunks them into the "implausible" basket, psychology into the "pathology" basket, and the transpersonal community straight into the mythic kiddie pool which completely neuters the narratives of their physical components. Does this mean that we don't presently have the makeup to acknowledge what's going on? I don't know, but It seems like the only people who are willing to acknowledge them are the experiencers themselves. What does that tell you? Perhaps the experience provides the makeup to understand. Our desire to stubborn apply liner, cause and effect thinking and overlook the experience simply get us no where. This is where science goes nuts, because the rug gets pulled out. We hear, "if you can't apply the scientific method it doesn't exist!" This just simply isn't true and we should know this by now. The truth is this attitude sends us backwards to reassert and regurgitate unworkable methods, models, and frameworks, which just adds to the mess. This points to a much larger pattern, almost a culture of resistance. This often gets overlooked when addressing the impact of the experiences themselves. The experiences may not be applied, but the process in which these issues are integrated into the cultural stream does nevertheless. So right now this is what we got. A mixed boundary phenomenon that includes physical, psychological, and transpersonal states. Maybe our culture perhaps just can't digest that right now. But the transformation happens anyway. I'm going to give credit where credits due.
 
#7
Those questions are getting into the Whitely Strieber territory. That it is the enigma itself that is changing us--"evolving" us, or altering our consciousness in some way.
I see it as we (as Self -consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer) transforming ourselves. Since linear time only exists within physical expression of said Self the transformation can - and does - meet with resistance from the physically expressed aspects of Self
 
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#8
I see it as we (as Self -consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer) transforming ourselves. Since linear time is a physical construct of said consciousness, the transformation can - and does - meet with resistance from the physically expressed aspects of Self
Good comment. Yes, I see good evidence for this in therapy. It's almost looks like a deconstruction process. It very closely resembles Spiritually Transformative episodes, or a positive sub-psychotic process if you're viewing it through a mainstream psychological lens. What's interesting to me is the variations in how long particular abductees will revolve around the trauma in their narratives. Its apparent the impact of these experiences don't register in the same way for everybody. There are differences that seem to reflect a spectrum of plasticity and rigidity in the personality type. Revisiting trauma seems to help knock away at these non-linear characterological elements of the smaller self, especially with the more rigid types. Simply put, there's a very diverse set of outcomes in how the transformative element gets expressed. I tend to think this is why the Buddhists prefer to focus on enlightenment avoiding the stops along the way. These experiences seem to suggest reality, or perhaps the realm of experience, is a pretty wild and wooly place.
 
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chuck.drake

#9
Thanks for the feedback. I agree nothing groundbreaking. But the point is not to be revolutionary, but to point out a larger pattern of resistance.

Here's the bottom line. It's not just experiences that are repeatedly overlooked. It's the function of transformation and transformation themes. There's the implication of a function with alien abductions that CAN be addressed, but yet we repeatedly bypass this in the research. Why? I suspect science, psychology, and even the transpersonal psychology communities get stuck in the politics of upholding their belief systems just like everybody else. But what's crystal clear is none of our approaches currently fit. Science slam dunks them into the "implausible" basket, psychology into the "pathology" basket, and the transpersonal community straight into the mythic kiddie pool which completely neuters the narratives of their physical components. Does this mean that we don't presently have the makeup to acknowledge what's going on? I don't know, but It seems like the only people who are willing to acknowledge them are the experiencers themselves. What does that tell you? Perhaps the experience provides the makeup to understand. Our desire to stubborn apply liner, cause and effect thinking and overlook the experience simply get us no where. This is where science goes nuts, because the rug gets pulled out. We hear, "if you can't apply the scientific method it doesn't exist!" This just simply isn't true and we should know this by now. The truth is this attitude sends us backwards to reassert and regurgitate unworkable methods, models, and frameworks, which just adds to the mess. This points to a much larger pattern, almost a culture of resistance. This often gets overlooked when addressing the impact of the experiences themselves. The experiences may not be applied, but the process in which these issues are integrated into the cultural stream does nevertheless. So right now this is what we got. A mixed boundary phenomenon that includes physical, psychological, and transpersonal states. Maybe our culture perhaps just can't digest that right now. But the transformation happens anyway. I'm going to give credit where credits due.
It is undoubtedly clear that the experience is transformative for those who are lucky enough to either have some internal resources related to wisdom, or else who can find a midwife like Rodwell or Mack to shepherd them through the birth of their new being. But we don't know if the numbers being driven into this transformational experience is any greater now than it has been throughout the ages. Could the advent of communications simply have exposed this ever-existing band of experiencers? Can we find any cases of personal transformation linked to fairy abduction? Are there similar intrusive transformative processes from the past? Would they have the same relation to consciousness as these current experiences?

What do we do with the fringe of this fringe? With MILAB? With people who claim aliens are attacking them with voice to brain technologies, or attacking them with microwaves? How do we determine which are the true experiences, as you mentioned in your post. Do we let some people into the party and others we ourselves will label as insane, just as the vast majority of the population labels us? That is like a ghetto within a ghetto. What to do with it?

And what is the meaning of the transformation? Are these folks literally existing in two lives as many claim, one alien and one human on Earth? Is there really a hybrid breeding program seeding the Earth with halflings? How are the experiencers going to succeed on their mission to turn the Earth back from the brink of destruction? If the goal of the abductions is to influence change on the Earth, is their process really an effective one?

The deeper you dig into the entirety of the UFO and abduction phenomena, then more nonsensical it all becomes. It is clear that there are several veins of experience. Are we gathering around the one that appeals most to our hopeful natures? The one that makes us more comfortable? Lots of questions and very few real answers.
 
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chuck.drake

#10
I see it as we (as Self -consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer) transforming ourselves. Since linear time only exists within physical expression of said Self the transformation can - and does - meet with resistance from the physically expressed aspects of Self
I think Whitley's point is that it is the irrational and unknowable nature of the experience that drives consciousness into some kind of change. The enigma itself is a kind of engine of change. Maybe not what he currently believes, but he has expressed something along those lines. It ties into Raymond Moody's interest in the nonsensical.
 
#11
It is undoubtedly clear that the experience is transformative for those who are lucky enough to either have some internal resources related to wisdom, or else who can find a midwife like Rodwell or Mack to shepherd them through the birth of their new being. But we don't know if the numbers being driven into this transformational experience is any greater now than it has been throughout the ages. Could the advent of communications simply have exposed this ever-existing band of experiencers? Can we find any cases of personal transformation linked to fairy abduction? Are there similar intrusive transformative processes from the past? Would they have the same relation to consciousness as these current experiences?

What do we do with the fringe of this fringe? With MILAB? With people who claim aliens are attacking them with voice to brain technologies, or attacking them with microwaves? How do we determine which are the true experiences, as you mentioned in your post. Do we let some people into the party and others we ourselves will label as insane, just as the vast majority of the population labels us? That is like a ghetto within a ghetto. What to do with it?

And what is the meaning of the transformation? Are these folks literally existing in two lives as many claim, one alien and one human on Earth? Is there really a hybrid breeding program seeding the Earth with halflings? How are the experiencers going to succeed on their mission to turn the Earth back from the brink of destruction? If the goal of the abductions is to influence change on the Earth, is their process really an effective one?

The deeper you dig into the entirety of the UFO and abduction phenomena, then more nonsensical it all becomes. It is clear that there are several veins of experience. Are we gathering around the one that appeals most to our hopeful natures? The one that makes us more comfortable? Lots of questions and very few real answers.
I'm presently writing a piece that addresses many of these issues. Personally, I think a lot of what you see in the aftermath of these transformative episodes, i.e. the community dissonance, or "the crazy factor," is related to personality. The psyche gets a shock. It's exposed to impossibility, to nonlinear causality, and depending upon its resiliency and strength great variations in feedback may occur. Please see Milab, hybrid paranoia, people paying to see high masters "channel" in satellites. Personally I don't think this has much to do with the ultimate reality that may underlie the phenomenon. We might never know what that reality is. What may emerge as a result of these experiences is a cultural ordering process that allows us to access the utility of these transformative states. Of course culture is in some ways a personality too, so that may take some time before a healthy process shakes out. Who knows if alien intelligences may or may not be on the other side or not. It's' very likely the idea of an alien is simply a misnomer. I tend to think this is what the alien abduction process is all about. In our paradigm we presently prefer to see ourselves as separated from the whole. It seems likely were not.
 
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chuck.drake

#12
What may emerge as a result of these experiences is a cultural ordering process that allows us to access the utility of these transformative states. Of course culture is in some ways a personality too, so that may take some time before a healthy process shakes out.
How would that take place outside of a cultural institution, like a church? Wouldn't that essentially be what we are talking about? Will everyone get their own abduction? Or will some have to believe it will happen? I just can't get a handle around the transformation part. I don't want to be rude, but most people are a lot more interested in "Crazy Housewives of Atlanta" than about spiritual transformation, especially one led by "aliens". I can only speak for myself, but because I tend to gather in rather isolated groups of like-minded or semi-aware people, whether in person or online, I tend to forget how things look in the "real world." It's a real mess out there with most people utterly hypnotized by trivia and ever increasing levels of meaningless stimulation. Meaning has largely fallen by the wayside. While it is true the people of Earth are very hungry, I think we may have forgotten what constitutes our true nutrients. Don't forget the part of the abduction mythos whereby the aliens largely see us as rather cloddish, simple and somewhat primitive.
 
#13
I think Whitley's point is that it is the irrational and unknowable nature of the experience that drives consciousness into some kind of change. The enigma itself is a kind of engine of change. Maybe not what he currently believes, but he has expressed something along those lines. It ties into Raymond Moody's interest in the nonsensical.
That "point" fails in relation to what I offered. I'm not using the word consciousness to denote human/physical thinking/rationality/logic. etc. I made that clear with "consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer." That source is far beyond limited notions such as rationality and "unknowable." Nothing is "driving consciousness" into anything. Consciousness changes and (to use the linear framework) flows new/different parameters into physical constructs. It is the physical aspects that are "being driven" (more correctly influenced) to express the "new" aspects of consciousness.

I'll add to/translate what I said into the terms you are thinking within:

We (as Self -consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer) transform ourselves. Since linear time only exists within physical expressions of said Self the transformation can - and does - meet with resistance from the physically expressed aspects of Self. Much of that resistance shows in those physically expressed aspects clinging to attempts to use intellect-based methodologies such as logic, rationalizing, analysis, thinking, intellectual understanding to integrate/express the expansion that is there at source (consciousness/spirit, etc) level.
 
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chuck.drake

#14
That "point" fails in relation to what I offered. I'm not using the word consciousness to denote human/physical thinking/rationality/logic. etc. I made that clear with "consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer." That source is far beyond limited notions such as rationality and "unknowable." Nothing is "driving consciousness" into anything. Consciousness changes and (to use the linear framework) flows new/different parameters into physical constructs. It is the physical aspects that are "being driven" (more correctly influenced) to express the "new" aspects of consciousness.

I'll add to/translate what I said into the terms you are thinking within:

We (as Self -consciousness/greater self/soul/spirit whatever term you prefer) transform ourselves. Since linear time only exists within physical expressions of said Self the transformation can - and does - meet with resistance from the physically expressed aspects of Self. Much of that resistance shows in those physically expressed aspects clinging to attempts to use intellect-based methodologies such as logic, rationalizing, analysis, thinking, intellectual understanding to integrate/express the expansion that is there at source (consciousness/spirit, etc) level.
I can agree with that. But it is a whole other ball of wax.
 
#15
How would that take place outside of a cultural institution, like a church? Wouldn't that essentially be what we are talking about? Will everyone get their own abduction? Or will some have to believe it will happen? I just can't get a handle around the transformation part. I don't want to be rude, but most people are a lot more interested in "Crazy Housewives of Atlanta" than about spiritual transformation, especially one led by "aliens". I can only speak for myself, but because I tend to gather in rather isolated groups of like-minded or semi-aware people, whether in person or online, I tend to forget how things look in the "real world." It's a real mess out there with most people utterly hypnotized by trivia and ever increasing levels of meaningless stimulation. Meaning has largely fallen by the wayside. While it is true the people of Earth are very hungry, I think we may have forgotten what constitutes our true nutrients. Don't forget the part of the abduction mythos whereby the aliens largely see us as rather cloddish, simple and somewhat primitive.
Perhaps the word "transformation" carries to much baggage. Consider this: In families, total system transformation (or Secondary Change) can result from one members change. It's not as magical as you might think. I think this process applies equally to cultures and global systems. Perhaps what's different about these larger transformations is the needed amplification of the intensity of the transitional theme. For example, in a family system a sibling might suddenly "see the light." He stops smoking pot and starts running track which brings his parents closer together. This unifies a split parental subsystem and rallies the children towards them. Abductions might work much in the same way for society. The transformation puts a larger process into motion whereby relationships and attitudes eventually change. I think the temptation here is to look at the phenomenon as a reason to ascribe a whole new function.
 
#16
W
Perhaps the word "transformation" carries to much baggage. Consider this:
----snip----
What you offer for "consideration" is really so much guff. No family changes because one member has. In fact no person changes because another has. It may sometimes appear that such has transpired but the actuality is different. To keep this post short I'll just say that all you mention is in the realm of reflection, (mostly a personal interpretation of effect) and none of it within the realm of primary activity..
 
#17
W

What you offer for "consideration" is really so much guff. No family changes because one member has. In fact no person changes because another has. It may sometimes appear that such has transpired but the actuality is different. To keep this post short I'll just say that all you mention is in the realm of reflection, (mostly a personal interpretation of effect) and none of it within the realm of primary activity..
Thanks for your reaction albeit it appears a judgemental one. In the meantime, if your interested in challenging the theory behind your reaction, please read "Family Evaluation, the role of the family as an emotional unit that governs individual development," by Michael E. Kerr and Murray Bowen; "Families And Family Therapy," by Salvador Minuchin, and "The Bowen Family Therapy and Its Uses," by C. Margaret Hall. You might find evidence that suggests otherwise. Also, my belief that in this possibility is based on daily clinical work with families.
 
#18
Thanks for your reaction albeit it appears a judgemental one. In the meantime, if your interested in challenging the theory behind your reaction, please read "Family Evaluation, the role of the family as an emotional unit that governs individual development," by Michael E. Kerr and Murray Bowen; "Families And Family Therapy," by Salvador Minuchin, and "The Bowen Family Therapy and Its Uses," by C. Margaret Hall. You might find evidence that suggests otherwise. Also, my belief that in this possibility is based on daily clinical work with families.
Judgmental? No. I don't think you're a "bad person" because you constrain your view through certain default perspectives. As for theorizing - that's not my interest. People reading/hearing someone's rationalizations then doing the opinion dance about the opinions (aka intellectualizing) is what many see as gaining knowledge. In some areas (those that are primarily physical) it can work but in more expanded areas it is a poor substitute for knowledge.

And you are in correct about your own process. Your belief in it is based on your interpretations of what you observe processed through the filters of other beliefs. Most of what is going on you have yet to allow yourself to be aware of.
 
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chuck.drake

#19
Perhaps the word "transformation" carries to much baggage. Consider this: In families, total system transformation (or Secondary Change) can result from one members change. It's not as magical as you might think. I think this process applies equally to cultures and global systems. Perhaps what's different about these larger transformations is the needed amplification of the intensity of the transitional theme. For example, in a family system a sibling might suddenly "see the light." He stops smoking pot and starts running track which brings his parents closer together. This unifies a split parental subsystem and rallies the children towards them. Abductions might work much in the same way for society. The transformation puts a larger process into motion whereby relationships and attitudes eventually change. I think the temptation here is to look at the phenomenon as a reason to ascribe a whole new function.
I'm not sure. I think a more apt metaphor might be found in the civil rights movement or in the way that we have seen attitudes about the LGBTQ community shifting. Or we can consider progress for women in the West. But even these larger movements of change are clearly limited to specific cultures, as in each case we can find, globally, examples of cultural attitudes that are really echoes of centuries past or sometimes even past millennia. I'm hard pressed to think of any specific point of progression that has really occurred on a global scale. And if we accept those cultural changes as somehow progressive, do we really understand the nature how they came about, or do we know fully whether the change is a superficial one of attitude or whether they genuinely reflect a true change in the perceptions of the culture?

I'm not sure I would go so far as Saiko, but I also have my doubts about systematic transformation within families. Anyone who has had children realizes very quickly that we appear to be born with some very marked portions of our "personality" intact. Babies and children are not tabula rasa that can be easily shaped and guided to meet some specific expectation. And adults are even more intractable. That is not to deny the fact that parenting skills and environment play some part. But despicable people at times come from good families and saints do also emerge from hellish familial environments.

Even initiating small personal changes in diet for example are oftentimes tremendously hard. And we many times hear of cases where when one partner in a relationship manages to initiate real change, to grow more emotionally mature for instance, and then the other partner rather than changing for the better rejects this positive change and instead of mutual growth there is a dissolution instead.

I want to believe that people can change, and I do believe that personal transformation is undoubtedly possible. I am just skeptical of the ability of the experience of the paranormal to effect any real cultural or global changes.
 
#20
Judgmental? No. I don't think you're a "bad person" because you constrain your view through certain default perspectives. As for theorizing - that's not my interest. People reading/hearing someone's rationalizations then doing the opinion dance about the opinions (aka intellectualizing) is what many see as gaining knowledge. In some areas (those that are primarily physical) it can work but in more expanded areas it is a poor substitute for knowledge.

And you are in correct about your own process. Your belief in it is based on your interpretations of what you observe processed through the filters of other beliefs. Most of what is going on you have yet to allow yourself to be aware of.
Thanks for your feedback. I think you've changed my perspective, and perhaps this will change a few things.
 
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