As my journey within UFOlogy has moved on, my philosophical position has mirrored that of a fuel gauge in a car, moving gradually from full to near empty. From being an almost wide eyed believer, I have become sceptical. Not cynically so, not bitter or fed up, but in to a position that I think of as a realistic perch on which to sit. This has happened as a result of recognising the degree and depth to which UFOlogy has been the victim of the American Intelligence services.
In early October of 2007, I posted up on the UFO Review website an article by Canadian writer Bernard Pelletier which amounted to a good old fashioned side swipe at sceptics. I prefaced it with the observation that the views contained did not necessarily represent the opinions of the web site etc but the article had some element of worth and although I disagreed with it fundamentally, within certain limits I’m quite prepared to offer a platform to pretty much anyone.
The writer displayed the despair of the scared believer, one who feels his position undermined but who is desperate not to let go. It was, frankly, a rant. My reason for mentioning this is to illustrate the point that sceptics come in a variety of colours and shades and to blindly thrash around waving a bat at all of them is silly.
You see, I believe that aliens have visited planet Earth.
When most people offer the opinion that they think it’s very unlikely that ET has visited here, inevitably they do so from the trapped cultural perspective of the Gray. They may not have that word in mind but undoubtedly behind the statement, somewhere in their consciousness, will be a mental image of something with a head and limbs jumping out of a saucer-shaped craft. That scenario is just so unlikely that it’s a doddle to reject. And it’s true; it is easy to reject because for one thing, there’s no acceptable proof.
This is a trap that we all constantly fall into, as do those who insist that faster then light travel is impossible. On the one hand, at some level we recognise that this is a mysterious subject that has defied explanation for centuries. It presents itself in myriad forms that perplex, puzzle, frighten and confuse. It fills us with awe and fear as well as intense expectation and reaches into the Human spirit in a way that shuts out the mundane and excludes the banal.
Yet we look at it through the camera lens of Stephen Spielberg. What we don’t do is to bring to this subject the one thing that it needs: imagination.
We want what we want, and what we want is the cliché. However people twist it, however they deny it, and no matter what intellectual or research level they hold within UFOlogy, fundamentally, they want their Space Brothers. They want to be rescued, guided, and mentored. Which is why for many people within the subject, the science of astrobiology induces a yawn.
Microbes aren’t exciting and they don’t interact. Red rain remains a phenomenon that can be conveniently ignored. The bizarre life forms that might have evolved on Europa are just glorified fish. And the Mars Rovers are a pain in the ass because nothing so far has stood up in front of them holding a card reading “Come and get me Earthlings”.
ET is here alright. He’s the bumble bee in the room or the dust swirl in the garden. He is frankly, anything your imagination can let him be. But if there is intelligent life out there, no matter how far away it might be, that is a hundred years or more ahead of our science, and there will be, then it will have come. It will have got here and had a look at our planet and lamented the pitiful lack of imagination among its inhabitants.