Friday, July 16, 2010

Beginnings . . .

For those who don’t know me, I would like to introduce myself. I am a writer, psychologist and ufologist who hails from Eugene, Oregon. I use the term ufologist with some trepidation, since it is not very well defined and may imply things that are untrue. Besides, lacking any social status or academic heft, anyone can call him or herself a “ufologist” without complaint from the relevant professional society. Be that as it may, I have been reading about UFOs and ufology for more than two decades, and have been involved in investigations with UFOS Northwest for the past five years. I should probably mention that the views expressed in this blog — apart from comments by others — are mine alone.

So how does a psychologist become interested in the marginalized and slightly suspect field of UFOs? Putting it simply: UFOs and related phenomena represent the greatest mystery of our time. For many decades — and probably for centuries — strange objects have been seen plying our skies. UFOs have cropped up in ancient pictographs, Egyptian temples and medieval art. In modern times, these objects have been reported by highly reliable witnesses, including amateur and professional astronomers, policemen, military and commercial pilots. I have dabbled in amateur astronomy, and perhaps I will have more to say about the relationship between astronomy and ufology in another post. But for now let me mention a couple facts. In 1976, the American Astronomical Society conducted a survey and found that roughly five percent of its membership had witnessed something that could be classified as a UFO. Furthermore, Clyde Tombaugh, the astronomer who discovered the recently demoted dwarf planet, Pluto, reported no less than three UFO sightings. In sum, well-qualified observers are seeing things in the sky for which we have no satisfying explanation. This alone makes ufology a worthy field of study.

On a more personal level, I think that my openness to UFOs and other strange phenomena comes from my grandmother, Hilda, who grew up in a dirt floor cottage in a Ukrainian stetl. Like many Jews of her generation, she immigrated to America around age 12 and eventually married a junk dealer from San Francisco. My grandmother had a strong psychic bent with deep roots into East European mysticism. While growing up, we were regaled with stories about her telepathic prowess. Also, my aunt seemed to have inherited a hint of these powers, and at times she attempted to keep us out of trouble with her precognitive warnings.

For those of you who also have the ufology bug, you understand the endless fascination with shape-shifting craft that zip around our atmosphere at impossible velocities, doing dances around our most sophisticated military aircraft, shooting beams of electronics defeating light down upon nuclear missile silos, and sometimes landing in a field at night — or even beside a military base, as in the remarkable Rendlesham case in the UK in December, 1980. Ufology is a place where science fiction becomes reality, and is this intersection between the fantastic and tangibly real that grabs my interest like nothing else.

In this blog, you will find my thoughts about UFOs and related phenomenon, as well as some anecdotes and observations from my investigations. So strap on your harness, pull up the shades, and get ready for the ride.

1 comment:

  1. Very Interesting. Your life reminds me of my own life.