Monday, May 28, 2012

Astronaut Theology: Mysteries Within Mysteries

I've been rather busy this week trying to stay out of the poorhouse, but I've had two main themes that I've been mulling over, both of which stemmed from my reading.

After my weird experience on Sunday night, I felt compelled to re-read the chapter on Jacques Vallee in Jeff Kripal's must-have Authors of the Impossible. I wasn't sure what I was looking for, but there was something I had unconsciously remembered from my previous reading (which was a while back now) that I felt needed to be explored. The quote itself?
"UFOlogy is not a science but a process of initiation.
One starts with field investigations and ends up studying Arab mystics."

Aime Michel, in a letter to Jacques Vallee.
Michel was a bit optimistic here, if you ask me-- he's speaking of a small cadre of heretics who always seem to find themselves excommunicated from UFOlogy-- but his basic thesis holds true. If you approach UFOlogy from our current reductionist, materialistic model of science, you'll inevitably end up driven half-mad with the endless puzzles it throws at you.

This is not a mystery that wants to be solved- it's the kind of capital M Mystery that your ancestors were given to building ecstatic cults around. If you approach the mystery the way they did, as an eternal enigma leading us along to a deeper understanding of the world around us-- a kind of Zen koan in the sky-- your attitude towards and your perception of the evidence completely changes. You're no longer frustrated or stymied by the refusal of this Mystery to stop being so damn mysterious.

Most importantly, you realize that Synchronicity plays a crucial, indispensible role in all of this and becomes a quite reliable navigational tool in unchartable waters.

And as if to punctuate this mini-revelation, the very next day a variation on Vallee's multiverse theory (see Kripal pp 182, 188) escaped from the faculty lounge (and Fringe's writer's room) and became front page news when Newsweek magazine ran a cover story on the multiple universe theories of physicist Brian Greene.

This is the kind of synchronicity you come to expect when treading in these waters (never mind that the previous night's event was capped by one sync after another itself). One of the best semioticians I ever met believed that Synchronicity wasn't simply some novelty, some cute app from the Reality Matrix store, but was being manufactured by mulitidimensional beings who existed outside of the flow of time and space. I'm sure he and Vallee would have had much to talk about.

The other book I've been reading is Nick Redfern's new book The Pyramids and the Pentagon, which details the US military's very deep and abiding interest in Ancient Astronaut Theory and other offerings from the high weirdness catalog they have no business dabbling in.
This isn't an entirely shocking revelation to me- I knew that the Air Force took a keen and rather inexplicable interest in the Stargate SG-1 series, for instance. But Nick painstakingly uncovers a much deeper engagement with AAT, most remarkably a belief that Noah's Ark was in fact of alien provenance and was built to store DNA, not mating pairs of animals.

It was reading the signs and symbols that the rich and powerful take as their own that put me back on the trail of the ancient astronauts after losing interest in the topic for several years, a process that unfolded in real time on this blog.
One of the puzzles I kept coming across was the constant pairing of NASA and Ancient Egypt exhibits at science museums, a pattern that seemed to repeat itself too often to be random.

Remember that NASA itself is a military (or paramilitary, rather) outfit whose bread and butter is the vast orbital satellite infrastructure, not growing tomatoes in space. In that context, their own rather promiscuous dabbling in ancient Mystery symbolism seems less a quirk and more a statement of intent.

And it's not limited to NASA: SpaceX planned its Horus-Isis rendezvous (the Falcon9/Dragon mission to the International Space Station) for Walpurgisnacht and then for May 19th (surely not a reference to 19.5, just as the phony controversy about Obama and the May 19th Organization is no such thing either) before finally blasting off on the 22nd.

But it was the world famous statue of "Prometheus" (sic) at Rockefeller Center that drove me back to the forbidden zone of AAT. It was when I noticed a particular visual motif that I'd been puzzling over, the potent "Heavenly Beam" icon used in the poster art for highly resonant films like Stargate and Mission to Mars (which the USAF and NASA got involved with) encoded into the layout of Rockefeller Center itself (built six decades before those films were produced, mind you) that I began to realize that what the ridiculous shills in the universities and the sad, rapidly-aging debunkers in the media told us and what their paymasters actually believed about humankind's true history were two separate realities altogether.

It was while I was puzzling over all of this that the 2008 Clownshow Presidential election starting feeding high initiate symbolism into the Mediastream in such a way I'd never seen before. All of that culminated in the Stairway to Sirius series, which itself was inspired by the absolute orgy of Sirius symbolism thrown back and forth by the Obama and McCain campaigns (we're seeing the same thing this year as well).

Shortly after the Election we saw the Anunnaki invocation in Dubai, the wink and nod punchlines with Obama's dog, the Sirius Star drama, the coronation of the new Tut on the Giza Necropolis and much more besides. In the middle of all of that, I had to deal with some synch-laden high weirdness of my own which only served to sharpen my awareness of everything that was unfolding in the world outside my little green space capsule here.

It's amazing to think that just a couple years before all of this I'd written a (still-unpublished) manuscript on Mystery symbolism in sci-fi film that hardly dealt with UFOs or AAT at all. The only time I dealt with the topic was when I was detailing the plots to Stargate, 2001: A Space Odyssey, or what have you. In other words, talking about AAT pretty much the same way a writer at io9 or SF Signal would- as a mere trope.

Note Templar/Maltese cross in Winged Sundisk

But after wrestling with all of the symbolism thrown around during the election, I wrote this:
When you read the ancient texts - particularly the Sumerian and Egyptian- a picture becomes very clear- the gods descended from the heavens, created men and taught them the arts of civilization and then returned to the stars. Over time, scholars have seen all of this as metaphor. That's scholars for you. Everything is a metaphor.

But what if your business was power? Government, religion, the culture industry, the military- if you could somehow ingratiate yourself to these "gods" to the point that somehow they decide to align themselves with you, well, that would be the ultimate advantage. Wouldn't it? The question becomes how do you even contact these beings?

From Seqenenre Tao to the Mystery Cults to the Gnostics to the Cathars to the Templars to the Freemasons and beyond, we see a tradition sealed by blood oaths, a very ancient tradition of people willing to die to keep their sects' secrets. Why? Where does this come from? Was there once a secret so profound that to reveal it would cause such harm that only the penalty of torture and death could keep it hidden?

I've been studying this dilemma for several years and none of the secrets these groups supposedly kept were even all that interesting, never mind profound (Morals and Dogma will bore you to the point where you pray for the sweet release of death). I'm not sure exactly when it happened, but at some point in the last year or two I became convinced that there had to be something else. Perhaps something lost in time that we could only figure out by reading the symbols and metaphors these groups couched their secrets in. And that process began to pick up speed in the Imperial Age, with breakthroughs like the discovery of the Rosetta Stone.

I'm sure Nick didn't read that post; I get the feeling from his new book that he doesn't read this blog much at all, actually. But he asks to the same basic questions in his new book that I asked back in 2008.  I'm sure both of us are very latecomers to this particular party.

The military and the intelligence agencies pay attention to things we'd never imagine were important to them; Nick details the keen interest that the Navy took in the work of Morris Jessup, even if the usual pointy-headed suspects thought he was a crank. Men whose job it is to get things done under extreme duress don't worry much what academics think about anything. And certainly not the building of the pyramids and the rest of it. They talk to building engineers and other people in the field. Doers, not yakkers.

And as soon as people were understanding the mechanics of artificial flight, you can bet people in intel were going back and studying reports like this:

Even Christopher Columbus, it appears, saw a UFO. While patrolling the deck of the Santa Maria at about 10 PM on October 11, 1492, Columbus thought he saw "a light glimmering at a great distance." He hurriedly summoned Pedro Gutierrez, "a gentleman of the king's bedchamber," who also saw the light. After a short time it vanished, only to reappear several times during the night, each time dancing up and down "in sudden and passing gleams." The crew was near exhaustion and ready to mutiny. The light, first seen only four hours before land was sighted, was never explained, but may have saved the craft from turning back and the discovery of America."

Beyond Earth: Man's Contact with UFOs, by Ralph and Judy Blum, quoting The Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus (1850)
And this:
This is a report of a monastery clerk in Northern Russia addressed to a high dignitary of the Russian Church who reports that on August 15, 1663, there was a visitation of the earth between 10 and 12 hours from the clear skies. A sphere appeared, about 40 meters in diameter; from the lower part two rays extended earthward and smoke poured from the sides of the vehicle...The phenomenon was observed by two groups of people. Some watched it from the church; others from a boat which happened to be in the middle of the lake.

In the Proceedings of an International Conference on Extraterrestrial Intelligence (Carl Sagan (ed.), Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1973),

And most certainly this:
May. 15, 1879  Persian Gulf. Two very large "wheels" were seen spinning in the air and slowly coming to the surface of the sea. Estimated diameter: 40 m. Distance between the objects: 150 m. Speed: 80 km/h/ Duration: 35 min. 
So at some point in time, people in the employ of governments were undoubtedly going back and studying the kinds of cases that Vallee and Chris Aubeck document in the indispensible Wonders in the Sky. Even if the media shills lap it up when the scientific debunker shills and the religious debunker shills piss their pants and shriek and tear at their combovers when the topic is raised (doing so according to the recommendations of the Brookings Institute, mind you) I have every confidence that serious people doing serious jobs don't pay any attention to them at all.

So I had these two disparate streams at work in my head- the mystic Vallee and nuts 'n' bolts (ish) Redfern, speaking the language of the Mysteries on one hand and doing straight up investigative journalism on the US military's interest in ancient astronauts on the other. What could the connection be?

Specifically, I mean.

Here's where my mind started wandering back to Rockefeller Center and that icon of "Prometheus" (sic). As I explained in a previous article, I don't for a minute believe that's actually Prometheus. The  zodiac, the emergence from the rock, and the youthful, golden appearance belong not to the hoary old Titan but to the young warrior god Mithras. Indeed, the Rockefeller Plaza icon isn't the only crypto-Mithras out there; there's also Golden Boy, the alleged statue of "Mercury" atop the capital building in Winnipeg, Canada (a favorite of Synchromystic pioneer, Jake Kotze).

Aside from its height (a highly-resonant 17 feet), Golden Boy is rather conspicuously uncapped. Mercury's winged helmet isn't just a fashion accessory, it's an absolutely crucial part of his identity. Golden Boy is also carrying wheat, meaningless to Mercury, but an important aspect of the most important Mithraic icon, the Tauroctony (we see it referenced in the Mithraic drama, Michael Clayton).

Another major crypto-Mithras (and one of the most explicit homages to the ancient god himself) is the Genius of Electricity aka Spirit of Communication, the giant AT+T mascot which I used to see every day when I dropped my wife off at work. It's in Dallas now (a mere six blocks away from Dealey Plaza), but spent several years in my neck of the woods when it was removed from AT+T's headquarters in Manhattan.

Mithras was central to the life and work of Carl Jung, who not only deeply immersed himself in the mythos and ritual of the ancient sun god but credited the Mithraic Liturgy with helping to develop his theory of the Collective Unconscious
when a patient at an asylum reported dreams rife with Mithraic imagery.

A flying saucer and 17 dots
Revisionists have tried to chip away at Jung's claims (most prominent among them is Richard Noll, who works for the Catholic Church) but as we've seen the Mithraic Liturgy is a remarkable document on its own terms, detailing what sounds like a modern account of an alien abduction aboard a flying disk:
...It is impossible for me, born mortal, to rise with the golden brightnesses of the immortal brilliance ...Draw in breath from the rays, drawing up three times as much as you can, and you will see yourself being lifted up and ascending to the height, so that you seem to be in mid-air.

You will hear nothing either of man or of any other living thing, nor in that hour will you see anything of mortal affairs on earth, but rather you will see all immortal things.
For in that day and hour you will see the divine order of the skies: the presiding gods rising into heaven, and others setting.

Now the course of the visible gods will appear through the disk of god, my father...

..and in similar fashion the so-called "pipe," the origin of the ministering wind. For you will see it hanging from the sun's disk like a pipe.

You will see the outflow of this object toward the regions westward, boundless as an east wind, if it be assigned to the regions of the East--and the other similarly, toward its own regions.
Exactly what the nature of this disk is is made clear with is line:
"And when the disk is open, you will see the fireless circle, and the fiery doors shut tight."
A two-thousand year old text of a flying disk-- with fucking doors-- that takes the initiate up in outer space. Maybe the Skeptics can wish it all away, but be certain men in positions of power were paying close attention.

What's interesting in light of all of this is that Franz Cumont's groundbreaking studies on Mithraism were published at the same time UFOs were starting to reappear in the skies with events like the bizarre airship flap and the Aurora, TX crash. It should also be noted that although Jung's Flying Saucers is often cited by debunkers, the text itself isn't as confident in those conclusions. Jung was also not only a Mithras fan but also a dyed-in-the-wool "UFO nut" and obsessively collected photos and case studies.

It's my belief that Mithras as worshipped by the Romans was not the same figure known to the Zoroastrians, but was actually Horus trading under a more socially-acceptable guise. Remember that Isis reigned supreme throughout the Empire, as did her husband in the form of Serapis.

Horus the Child was well-known to the Romans, but a figure as central as the adult Horus was too important to the Heliopolitan priesthoods steering the Mysteries to stay in the shadows simply because the Romans thought gods with animal heads were abominations. The Tauroctony has puzzled scholars looking to Zoroastrianism for clues, but as we've seen the Pyramid Texts describe the tableau quite effectively:
Thou hast come that thou mayest command in the regions of Horus;
(thou hast come) that thou mayest command in the regions of Set;
that thou mayest speak in the regions of Osiris.
May the king make an offering: Thy son is upon thy throne...
thou goest in sandals; thou slaughterest an ox;

Pyramid Text, utterance 224

A servant (holy person) who belongs to the Ennead (pelican) is fallen in water.
Serpent, turn over that RĂ¯‘ may see thee.
To say: The head of the great black bull was cut off.
Hpn.w-serpent, this is said to thee. ...-scorpion, this is said to thee

Pyramid Text, utterance 227
And as we discussed back in 2009 the flying disk we see in the Mithraic Liturgy is a central icon to the religion of Egypt (as well as other Middle Eastern and Asian cultures). Note what sounds like the use of advanced anti-personnel weaponry in Horus' "disk":
    When Ra reigned as king over Egypt he sailed up the Nile towards Nubia, because his enemies were plotting against him. At Edfu Horus entered the bark of the great god and hailed him as father. Ra greeted the hawk god and entreated him to slay the rebels of Nubia. Then Horus flew up to the sun as a great winged disk, and he was afterwards called "the great god, the lord of the sky." He perceived the enemies of Ra, and went against them as a winged disk.

Their eyes were blinded by his brightness, and their ears were made deaf, and in the confusion they slew one another. Not a single conspirator remained alive. Ra afterwards visited the battlefield, and, when he saw the dead bodies of his foes, he said: "Life is pleasant."
In fact, it is Horus in the form of a flying disk who is the object of worship in what historians call the world's first monotheistic religion:
"Aten" was the traditional name for the sun-disk itself and so the name of the god is often translated as "the Aten" (for example, in the coffin texts of the Middle Kingdom) the word "Aten" represents the sun disc, and in the 'Story of Sinuhe' (also from the Middle Kingdom) Amenemhat I is described as soaring into the sky and uniting with Aten, his creator. During the New Kingdom, the Aten was considered to be an aspect of the composite deity Ra-Amun-Horus. 

We discussed Zechariah Sitchin recently, who provides us with yet another link to the clandestine studies of the Rockefeller family, since they seemed to subsidize his work. The question then becomes did Sitchin share all of his research with the public or did he develop two separate exegeses, one for the masses and the other for his patrons?

I wouldn't be the first to point out that his post-12th Planet oeuvre is distinctly inferior to the original work and I shared my concerns that his later works were characterized by a demoralizing and disempowering view of the Sumerian texts (which, again, I believe to be contaminated by tribal history, myth, and political gossip).

Even so, his Nibiru theory has entered the popular lexicon, even if often wildly distorted by pantpissers (Sitchin was disgusted by the appropriation of Nibiru for 2012 fearporn). Planet X won't go away, no matter how loud Phil Plait shrieks or how hard he stamps his feet:
Earlier this month, at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Timberline Lodge, Ore., Rodney Gomes, an astronomer from the National Observatory of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro, announced the results of his simulation of a region beyond Pluto known as the "scattered disk," suggesting the presence of an as yet to be discovered massive world.

The scattered disk is a sparsely populated region that overlaps with the Kuiper belt at around 30 AU (Neptune's orbit), and some scattered disk objects (or SDOs) have extreme orbits that extend to 100 AU.

One such small world is Sedna, a dwarf planet with a highly elongated orbit. "Sedna's orbit is truly peculiar," said Caltech planetary scientist Mike Brown, who led the team that discovered Sedna in 2003.

These extreme orbits, argues Gomes, could be due to the presence of an unknown massive planet. By his reckoning, a planet four times the size of Earth may be out there beyond the orbit of Pluto. In his simulation, he placed the gravitational field of a large planet and watched the effect it had on the SDO's orbits.
Like a lot of people I have trouble with Sitchin's Nibiru theories given its ostensible distance from the Sun. But if in fact it had some source of light and heat (whatever it may be- some have theorized it's actually an unignited Brown Dwarf), I could see a truly advanced race choosing not to live on this incredibly dangerous planet, or in this very dangerous neighborhood.  I favor the Mars origin theory for the Anunnaki as much I favor anything but I could see a truly cybernetic race (which we're a long way from becoming, no matter what Ray Kurzweil would like us to believe) leaving the inner solar system for good, opting for the relative safety of the Oort Cloud.

What obviously matters though is what people of more power and influence than myself think, and Nick's book goes into some detail on catastrophism and the destruction of Mars. The OSIRIS-REX mission patch has it that the program will explore "our past" (hmm) and secure our future. Calling on the Holy of Holies for an asteroid program might well speak to a level of anxiety about the threat from this cosmic marauders that NASA might not otherwise be comfortable sharing with the world.

Case closed.

In the end, we're looking at the crumbs on the table and trying to determine what the powerful individuals who sat there had for dinner.
But I've seen enough to know that Nick's book is on the money in its basic thesis, though I have some issues with some of the details (his Kirby information is way off). You can toss the entire modern UFO phenomenon aside-- from Kenneth Arnold to the the present day-- and still have more puzzling evidence than you could ever hope to sift through.

As far as I'm concerned, the time for arguing with skeptics on this issue is long since past. There's enough evidence to deal with- both the primary evidence and the evidence of interest in this issue by the kinds of individuals and organizations Nick documents to safely ignore the all of the bought-and-paid-for clownshoes.

Yeah, that was moved with ropes. In your dreams.

I believe the issue is to use this information to develop a new understanding of who we are and why we are here.
The Ancient Aliens crowd wants to reduce it all to material and technology, but I think there's a message that our ancestors have been trying to convey that's much deeper and profound than all of that. There's more work to be done in the context of paleocontact and exogenesis and all of the rest of it that's about a deeper connection to each other as siblings in the human family and as children of the stars. I think there are deeper messages written in stone than just "(alien) Kilroy was here."

It's about exploring the practical wisdom traditions of the peoples who were trying to tell us these stories, not in a mushy, sentimental New Agey-kind of context, but in a way that acknowledges that spirituality and mysticism are part of our basic programming (which science now confirms).

I believe that isn't just a quirk of evolution but may have been put there deliberately to enrich our lives and (hopefully) save us from the kind of destruction that organized religion always seems to encourage,  especially that of the absolutist/authoritarian variety that one particularly odious AAT debunker shamelessly pimps for.

It's not about creating a new religion or shopping for new gods but discovering the truth behind what we've heretofore seen as esoteric or heretic traditions, just as Vallee and Michel mulled over all those years ago.
But it's a lot more than that to me and always has been.

We can't know where we are going until we know who we are
, and once we can transcend the sci-fi trappings of AAT and the linguistic traps of misnomers like "alien" we can figure out exactly why we are so alienated from this world, from each other and even from ourselves.

After all, what could be more important?
And everything we've tried so far has gotten us to where we are now.

It will be a struggle, since it's self evident that the military is only interested in weaponizing whatever truths they discover and the rest of the world is hellbent on atomizing into mutually hostile and ever subdividing tribes (a process deliberately accelerated by right wing talk radio, Cultural Marxism and other toxic think tank-spawned plagues).

These tests trace populations to earliest known sources-
Native Americans are now known to have emigrated from Siberia

I've recently discovered through the modern magic of DNA testing that I am literally not who I thought I was (FB group members know about his), that my ancestry is more complex and exotic than I ever believed. But I believed what I was told, and what I was told was self-aggrandizing mythology.

I've learned that my mother's grandfather was a full-blooded Navajo (an open family secret/mystery I had heard for the first time a few years back) and that I have recent Native ancestry on my father's side as well
("recent" meaning another possible Native great-grandparent on my father's side). That's just the tip of the iceberg (hint: my Norman middle and surnames aren't accidental) as I'll explain in the near future.

Finding out my family's history has explained a lot of mysteries, just as a rather dramatic revelation I had some years back did in a much different context. But I understand my own life now because myths I believed have been demythologized. It empowered me and helped remove a shit-ton of stumbling blocks. The Truth often does that.

I think the same process awaits us as a species once we discover who we really are. And that's what it's really all about for me. It's why I spend so much time exploring a "family secret" the rest of the world would rather pretend doesn't exist.