I've spoken quite a bit in the past as to the origin of the term "Secret Sun," most recently in this post about my childhood nightmares. What I didn't tell you is where these Secret Sun dreams usually take place...
I believe the first time I explained the origin of the term "Secret Sun" was four years ago this month, in a post called "Their (Green) Sun is Different." I had been trying to decode the solar symbolism which was especially prominent that year and had come to the conclusion that what was being worshiped was not our Sun, but something else altogether.
It was around this time that a scholar had revealed that the famous Egyptian sun god Ra-- who returned to the stars and left Earth in the care of his charge Horus, was actually identified in the ancient texts with a green sun. Which was ringed. And traveled through the sky from West to East.
But I opened the piece with this:
"Secret Sun" goes back to my childhood. It refers to a recurring dream I've had since I was very young in which the Sun comes out in the middle of the night, but only a select few know about it.Now one of the great joys of doing this kind of work is when a certain word or phrase catches your ear and in doing so unlocks new doors or puts long-missing pieces of the puzzle into place. I thought of the phrase "only a select few know about" the Secret Sun when reading Jacques Vallee discuss his theories of the other-dimensional realm he believes UFOs and other manifestations of the paranormal spring from.
A second —and equally widespread — theory, is that Elfland constitutes a sort of parallel universe, which coexists with our own. It is made visible and tangible only to selected people, and the ‘doors’ that lead through it are tangential points, known only to the elves.And there it was: "tangible only to selected people." Different phrasing, but the same idea.
The Magonia that Vallee refers too comes from one of history's most interesting UFO flaps, this one from the reign of Charlemagne in the 10th Century CE. Just as today Medieval France had bitter, acid-tongued skeptics, decrying the rural bumpkins for their ignorance and credulity.
Only the skeptic in question was an Archbishop named Agobard, whose language here is essentially identical to something Randi or Robert Sheaffer might unleash on those goddamned "UFO nuts":
But we have seen and heard of many people overcome with so much foolishness, made crazy by so much stupidity, that they believe and say that there is a certain region, which is called Magonia, from which ships come in the clouds. In these ships the crops that fell because of hail and were lost in storms are carried back into that region; evidently these aerial sailors make a payment to the storm-makers [Tempestariis], and take the grain and other crops.Now just as Ra's sun belongs to another world not our own, so too does the secret sun. These dreams-- and bear in mind that I'm not claiming they're anything but dreams-- usually take place in another Manhattan, unlike our own, filled with vast, seemingly endless suburban neighborhoods encircling the great skyscrapers.
Among those so blinded with profound stupidity that they believe these things could happen we have seen many people in a kind of meeting, exhibiting four captives, three men and one woman, as if they had fallen from these very ships.
But there are other clues to this Not New York- I often enter on foot through marshlands and leave through grand, sun-drenched highways with names of probable numerological portent. This is another world with another Sun.
I only remember one person from the real world appearing in these dreams. Back in February of 2006 I wrote to her about it:
"We took a shortcut through a marsh, and you made me carry you through the puddly parts. I explained to you that I still believed in chivalry.And strangely enough, I had another marsh dream which I wrote to Joltin' Joe Linsner about the following month:
"Anyway, we got lost and ended up in New York. Then it was 1:30. I asked you if the sun was always out in New York at 1:30 in the morning. You said yeah, and it was getting on your nerves. That's the origin of "Secret Sun". It's a dream I've had since I was a kid, where the sun is out in the middle of the night, but only certain people know about it. You're the first real person I remember to appear in a Secret Sun dream, so you should feel highly honored."
"I was walking with my father to his house and we got lost in a church basement that opened into a marsh. Then we went upstairs and found ourselves on the deck of the Next Generation Enterprise. Data was reporting on the bird flu crisis. All I wanted was to do was get to my father's house. So we left the deck and were back in the swamp.Now bear in mind this was all pre-Esalen, when I was more concerned with secret societies and conspiracies than anything UFOlogical. So I wasn't processing Jacques Vallee, since at that point I hadn't read much of his work at all.
Data and some female officer came with us. I said "Data, I hope to hell you can drive, because we just want to get to my dad's house." I turned around and he was holding a gun to my father's head. I asked what he was doing. He responded, "You are when it's going to happen."
The first dream was important because my friend was in the midst of a cancer scare and since my unconscious mind associated hospitals with mortal danger (which you can also see in the Snow treatment), the dream was a protective wish-fulfillment. In fact, she appeared in another Secret Sun dream not long after.
But what struck me is that, with this Star Trek dream and the recurring Secret Sun dream, the marsh is a gateway, a door to another world. What exactly I'm processing there I'm not sure. But it did remind me of that remarkable Jack Kirby story, where the Human Torch enters into a Magonia-like dimension through a swamp. Wetlands also feature prominently in the Mothman flap of 1966 and another pivotal narrative in the world of Weird also features a marsh:
(Horus) was conceived magically after the death of Osiris and brought up by Isis on a floating island in the marshes of Buto. The child was weak and in constant danger from the scheming of his wicked uncle Seth, who sent serpents and monsters to attack him. But his mother, Isis was great in the magical arts and she warded off this evil by using a spell against creatures biting with their mouths and stinging with their tails, and the young Horus survived and grew.And then there's Swamp Thing, launching pad for the careers of Alan Moore and Mark Millar (Wanted, Kick Ass). Swampy started his life as a man transformed into a monster following a chemical explosion but Moore retconned the Muckman as an Elemental, able to travel through all kinds of dimensions. But in his first incarnation he underwent a classic abduction (by an alien named Solus, no less), which was maybe a bit too influenced by 'The Menagerie' aka 'The Cage.'
Reading all of this Vallee and Keel I can't help but think about 'The Cage', maybe more than I usually do. Aside from the obvious (Susan Oliver) and the less obvious (Vina) I just can't shake the archetypicality of it all- how it plays like the kinds of alien abduction narratives no one was talking about when it was shot.
In modern fairy-lore this divine branch or wand is the magic wand of fairies; or where messengers like old men guide mortals to an underworld it is a staff or cane with which they strike the rock hiding the secret entrance.- The Fairy Faith in Celtic CountriesYou had your Contactees and their rides to Venus, sure, but from what I can tell these kinds of stories didn't really come into vogue until 1966. Sure, our modern Agobards can find some comic strip or pulp illustration that probably only a tiny handful of fanboys ever saw, never mind remembered. But it's the fact that all of it is so much older, that Greys and abduction stories predate the printing press only no one thought of them as Venusians or Reticulans that really sticks in my head.
They were from another dimension, not entirely like ours but not entirely unlike it either. And there are those details, like the wand and the doorway and the telepathy and all the rest of it that a hard-drinking flyboy like Roddenberry had no business writing about, just like he had no business drawing from rediscovered Gnostic texts that hadn't been published yet.
Vallee is fine; Vallee you can deal with. Keel is another story. He's the guy who goes all in on every hand. To Keel, the Ultraterrestrials are the answer to all questions, the key to all mysteries. The great prophets, the fairy folk, poltergeists, the old pagan gods, the ancient astronauts? Yep, just more personas from the bottomless steamer trunk of Ultraterrestrial disguises. The problem is that it gets to be contagious.
I'm thinking of another anomalous Trek episode, 'Return to Tomorrow', one of the countless Walk-In stories in Trek's long history. Here we see the old Set-Osiris passion play acted out through the shameless scenery-chewing of Bill Shatner and the somewhat more subdued Leonard Nimoy.
But you start to wonder-- what if there is something to this?
What if the Annunaki made homo sapiens sapiens not merely as gold miners but as hosts for their vital energies?
When trying to puzzle the utter improbability of human evolution you can't rely strictly on biology. You have to start looking at the stories that resonate most strongly over the years. Walk-Ins-- in one form or other-- are one of those narratives that persist but in strange ways. There's demon possession but there's also Pentecost. We seem to be deeply ambivalent about the whole thing.
And now our friend, Hollywood It Girl Saoirse Ronan (Hanna, Lovely Bones), is set to star in the adaptation of The Host, Stephenie Myers' other million dollar franchise, spraying all kinds of resonance all over the multiplex, Secret Solar and otherwise.
We just can't get away from those Walk-Ins. They always sneak up on you...