High Strangeness: UFOs & Brain Patterns -- Part II

Saturday, March 29, 2014

UFOs & Brain Patterns -- Part II

Well, the response to my post about my friend Lxxx's UFO experience really took me by surprise.

The question of exactly when the mind recognizes that it's perceiving something that's "not normal" has started some interesting discussions here and on Facebook and at the Google Group "The UFO Collective," and has even gotten on the radar of noted UFO author Jenny Randles, who came up with the idea of "The OZ Factor," the moment you realize you're not in Kansas anymore.

And it turns out I got the spoiler all wrong for the "Veronica Mars" movie, so I didn't really spoil anything after all. Lxxx doesn't get killed, but she does shoot the guy I thought killed her!

But back to UFOs. I had another chat with Lxxx and she elaborated on her experience for me:
"Btw, to me, that 'feeling' you mentioned is the pause before 'fight or flight'. It's no longer the only two options. We've progressed to the third option of 'the danger may be worth it to experience something new'".
That's a mind-bender. The danger may be worth it to experience something new! I'm beginning to think that Lxxx represents some kind of evolutionary leap, or at least she's a really good candidate to lead NASA's next interplanetary mission. Lxxx, how did I not see this in you before??? (I know she's reading this)
Who knows? Maybe the danger is worth it...

And now we need a new expression... Something like... "fight or flight or fright" or "fight or flight or might" or "fight or flight or shite."

Okay, I'll stop now.

Anyway, I think I know how I'll react the next time I see a UFO; I'll choose the third option...


Terry the Censor said...

> The danger may be worth it to experience something new!

This is just the sense of "awe" you're talking about. Limiting our options to "fight or flight" is curious -- especially when evaluating UFO experiences for their validity.

In the Hill case, proponents hype the fear sometimes expressed by Barney and Betty. This emotion is usally used to suggest the credibility of the witnesses: who would want to imagine fearful experiences or memories? This all fits into a "fight or flight" framing.

But the Hills also expressed awe at the prospect of meeting aliens.

Wonder where they came from? Oh, gee, I wish I had the-- I wish I had gone with them...
You wish you had gone with them?
Yes. Oh, what an experience to go to some distant planet.

[Interrupted Journey, p 102]

"Philosophically, it has given me a broader appreciation of the universe," Barney Hill sums up his feelings. "After the incident happened, Betty and I would many times visit the Hayden Planetarium, listening to the lectures. The more we learned, the more fascinating the universe became to us. We bought books on the stars and planets, and our outlook broadened considerably. I became more open-minded about the possibility of life on other planets or in solar systems that might have planets."

[Interrupted Journey, p 288

Proponents tend not to quote such statements, perhaps to insulate the Hills from charges that they were UFO buffs predisposed to seeing aliens.

(I think I've got off-topic.)

Mark UFO'Connell said...

Those excerpts are very appropriate... I don't think you're off-topic at all. Who else has experienced that moment of surreality more intensely than abductees like the Hills, or Hickson & Parker? Of course, they all seem to have had the "fight or flight" option taken away from them...

Terry the Censor said...

> they all seem to have had the "fight or flight" option taken away from them...

Taking their testimony at face value, that's a good point. But they still had the attendant feelings.

I'll have to read up some more Jenny Randles.

Mark UFO'Connell said...

Yea, me too! She is extraordinarily prolific.