Thanks, those of you who tuned in to Paranormal Waypoint last night. I didn’t expect to go through a primer of my personal history from A-liens to Z-eus.(1) But I’m glad I did because I think it’s important to remember where I (Jeff Ritzmann and I, actually) come from. I think when we tear apart the crappy research that has come to define alien abductions and ufology as a whole, it’s easy to forget that we’re experiencers, not debunkers. We’re not just experiencers, though–we’re really out there experiencers of some unabashedly outlandish stuff. We’re also discerning skeptically-minded people. We have to be. These are our lives we’re talking about here and we would like to see these subjects handled with care.
One question Jeff asked me was if I ever thought I was crazy. He was asking about the spiritual shenanigans–an energy in me, Jer 2.0, that wakes me up psychically and moves the body into yogic postures, tai chi movements, whirling dervish twirls, and things I haven’t the foggiest clue about. I had only a minute to respond so I said “No.” I’d like to explain that a bit….
With the unknown phenomena we seem all too eager to name “alien abduction” I did ponder the crazy question–or at least delusional. I remained open to the real possibility that because I saw this brilliant UFO in 8th grade that was other-worldly in appearance I then read up on UFOs and alien abductions and assumed I was an abductee. Perhaps every little creak, every little bump in the night and alien dream added up to me being an abductee simply because I saw an object I couldn’t explain and read some books that interpreted it for me. Maybe, just maybe, I suffered a neurotic snowball effect from that one sighting. I entertained that idea for years; seeing the Wee People of Wherever at my bedside in October 2001 changed that.
Even so, I could make a George Hansen style Trickster hypothesis work here and it goes something like this: I saw a UFO in 8th grade. I obsessed over it well into adulthood. I feared having intimate relationships with women because I didn’t want to bring this into their lives. As a result, the night after I had sex for the first time–in New York City fresh off of the 9/11 attacks, no less–I saw aliens. This is thanks to the anti-structural context I found myself in culturally and personally coupled with a release of the aforementioned deeply held fear, because aliens didn’t show up when I lost my virginity. I breathed a sigh or relief and then, like a cosmic joke, they showed up the next night instead.
It’s The Secret in action, right? You obsess, you let go, you receive from the universe. Maybe. It doesn’t really fly with me because of all the evidence (and by that I mean personal experiences of the ufological and paranormal variety) I’m glossing over to make this work.
The point is, with alleged aliens I can see some ways in which I could have deluded myself. But the spiritual stuff? Emphatically NO. I know making declarative statements is taboo but I DO know what this energy is doing overall, even if I don’t understand the details or the mechanics. And I know without it we will never be whole. We will always be dysfunctional egos running the world into the mud. We are fundamentally flawed and in 2.0 mode you see that this is not human nature–this is humans running from nature and calling it human nature so they never have to confront the issue.
That is what we do.
The spiritual stuff is me. But the alien abduction stuff happens to me. Anything that is not me is open to debate.(2) A lot more guess work and a lot less acceptance goes into a presumably outside intelligence interacting with me. I can include the question of hallucinations and delusion there. But this energy I talk about is in me every moment. It is as undeniable as my arms and legs.
Finally, when I talk about the energy as an it, this is just a convenience of language. I don’t want to give the impression that I’m the host to some possessive intelligence or something along those lines. It’s not that–although there’s no law that says one intelligent energy has to manifest as one intelligence. After all, look at the universe. Look closer–look at Earth. Look at the chattering human psyche.
Look at you.
(1) Sorry. That’s as “god” as I can get with a Z. I’m part Greek so it works, right?
(2) Yes, I know at the core all is one but I’m talking about the day to day level in which we exist.