One of the topics of high strangeness that does not seem to fall clearly into the realm of either cryptozoology or the paranormal, is the subject of UFO’s and their nasty little gray occupants – beings that we are told have a penchant for abducting humans and experimenting on them. One of the sacred cows of UFOlogy is the idea that UFO’s and their occupants are from other worlds, perhaps in this galaxy and perhaps not. The further assumption is that these beings have far superior technology and that there is a worldwide conspiracy amongst many governments to prevent the disclosure of information that these governments hold about the “aliens” among us.
I make the disclaimer that I do not claim to be an expert in UFO lore. I have read some to the books and had some email conversations with folks who are much better informed about the subject than I am. Suffice to say though, that, though the above mentioned “aliens from outer space” theory is the popular one, there has always been a vocal minority of UFO researchers who thought there was something else altogether going on. I fall firmly into that camp.
There have been legends, amongst all peoples, of beings who come into this world and abduct human beings. The abductors who come most easily to mind for me are the Celtic faery – beings notorious for dragging humans off into the Hollow Hills and having their way with them – but, even in Sasquatch lore, we have stories of the big fellow throwing people over his shoulder and carrying them off. The Algonquin had stories of little people seen in the woods and were very careful to keep their children away any place where such entities were known to exist since the little ones were easily mislead and taken. Such entities seem to always take on the cultural overlay of the place in which they operate but their modus operandi is always the same: isolate, abduct, terrify, return and,often, repeat.
ISOLATE – Did you ever notice that Grays only seem to come after their victims in the dead of night when no one is likely to be awake or that often the little pests like to abduct people from cars on lonely stretches of highway? “Flying saucers” do not plop down in the middle of a busy street in Manhattan and pluck someone off the street. Believers will argue that the aliens are trying to keep themselves hidden but I would ask why? If their tech is so superior to ours, why not just cloak themselves from view and zap the person whenever and wherever instead of going to all the trouble of performing these late night abductions. Isolation of the victim seems to be a key in this phenomenon. In part 2 of this post I will make an argument for why this is so important to the beings but for now, note that in the faery stories of past ages, the exact same thing is true – the faery did not abduct people from groups, they waited to catch their victims alone.
ABDUCT – Once the victim is isolated, the abductors then immobilize him or her. All the abduction accounts I have read feature this concept. The person, once they remember the encounter, recalls either being unable to move or walking toward the “ship” against their will. Very frequently, the person finds themselves immobilized and then “floated” onto the “ship” like a plank of wood on water. In the faery stories, the person is often misled into the faery realm but might also be scooped up by the faery after having wandered into a forbidden area, performed some forbidden act or having otherwise offended these beings. Again, more in Part 2, but for now note that the paralysis described mirrors another phenomenon, the Night Hag.
TERRIFY – In olden times, just the fact of being abducted seemed to be enough to put the superstitious peasants almost out of their mind with terror so the faery did not appear to have to do much to get this reaction from people. The grays, on the other hand, seem to have stepped up their game. While the powerlessness of the abduction scenario is certainly terrifying in itself, the grays have added on “medical procedures” (frequently having to do with the reproductive organs about which humans are very sensitive) and/or scenarios where the space brothers warn the abductee about the various apocalyptic futures for our planet. Focus here, if you will on the emotion raised. While some abductees seem to become willing shills for their abductors and even see the experience as enlightening, pay close attention to the messages they are bringing forth. Chances are good the message will include elements designed to invoke a fear response.
RELEASE – Even in the old faery stories in which someone lives in the mound for years of our time, the person is always returned to their own world at some point. In the abduction literature, almost all the abductees are returned to their warm beds or their cold cars and there is very little evidence that anything at all occurred. In fact, the abduction is often carried in the subconscious of the victim for some time before it comes to light, usually as the result of the abductee looking for answers about missing time or other anomalies in their lives. My theory is that the release with its memory loss feeds into the TERRIFY part of the scenario. Abductions have been honed to produce the maximum emotional effect over a long period of time. I will come back to this with some force in Part 2.
REPEAT – Once a person has been abducted, it seems that they often become more liable to be abducted again (and again and again). Persons who undergo hypnotic regression for missing time etc. often recall not one but a whole series of abductions sometimes going back over a period of time. These abductions may range all the way back to the subject’s childhood. This seems to me, once more, to wire into the TERRIFY part of the scenario as I outlined in RELEASE above.
In Part 2, I will examine a model for explaining abductions without recourse to the “alien spaceships” model.