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Your Paracast Newsletter — September 9, 2018

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
September 2, 2018

Researcher and Scholar David Halperin Discusses UFOs and Cultural Influences on The Paracast

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This Week's Episode: Gene and Randall present a return appearance by UFO researcher and Biblical scholar David Halperin. His perspective on UFOs is that like religion, they are a human phenomenon. They have nothing to do with space travel or life on other planets. They’re about us–our hopes, our longings, our terrors. Particularly the greatest terror of all: the end of our existence. Are they alien visitors? Yes; but not in the sense of coming from outer space. Inside our own minds, our own souls, there’s enough alienness to fill a universe. Some of it is emerging … With messages for us? Perhaps. We just need to learn to decode them. From 1976 through 2000, David taught Jewish history in the Religious Studies Department at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

J. Randall Murphy's Ufology Society International: Ufology Society International (USI) - Explore the UFO Phenomenon

David Halperin's Blog: David Halperin

After The Paracast -- Available exclusively for Paracast+ subscribers on September 9: Gene and cohost J. Randall Murphy cover a curious range of topics, starting with Gene’s semi-serious description of his pet bichon, Teddy Bear, as a terrorist in light of a strange incident where someone became very upset by his presence. The discussion moves on to problems with the red version of the Blue Yeti USB mic, a product quite popular with radio hosts, and then segues to researcher and scholar David Halperin’s view of the UFO mystery as being largely a phenomenon involving the collective unconscious. Gene and Randall discuss the value of different types of evidence and whether there may be more than one solution.

Reminder: Please don't forget to visit our famous Paracast Community Forums for the latest news/views/debates on all things paranormal: The Paracast Community Forums. Check out our new YouTube channel at: The Official Paracast Channel

Of Cloaking Devices and Other Stuff
By Gene Steinberg

Few doubt how much influence “Star Trek” has had on our culture over the past five decades. All this from a TV series that never rose beyond middling ratings and was cancelled after three seasons.

So consider clamshell cell phones and smartphones and other goodies to be mentioned shortly. A sequel series, “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” featured a handheld computer that might very well have inspired such tablets as the iPad. Well, if it were not for the fact that a similar concept dates back to “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

Yet another piece of technology that has spread beyond the Trek universe is the cloaking device. First featured in a 1966 episode, “Balance of Terror,” it was the ultimate in stealth technology. When activated, a spacecraft would be virtually invisible.

As with other Trek inventions, such as warp drive and matter transportation, real scientists are working on technologies that are real world equivalents of a cloaking device. You can certainly imagine its value in wartime, except when both sides can conceal themselves this way. How could war be waged when the opposing sides cannot see one another? Well, it wouldn’t stop them from shooting down conventional aircraft, or striking a building. In that case, entire cities would have to be cloaked.

But if a war machine could be made essentially invisible, what about camouflage? What about making it look like something else? So one country could make its advanced aircraft resemble a single-engine plane, something that would barely merit attention. Well, at least until it fires its weapons.

Would the craft have to become visible to fire a shot, which seems to be the Trek way? Or would such a limitation exist?

Now consider an intelligent species from another star system that travels to Earth to look things over. Would the crew want to be seen in their true form, or would they do their level best to shield themselves from the populace?

Only the UFOs, aside from pinpoint maneuvers and sudden disappearances, aren’t particularly shy about revealing themselves. If we are indeed dealing with physical spaceships from the stars, does that mean that they just don’t care?

There are various theories about their true appearance, though. When people see possible spacecraft flying around, are they really there? What if we are dealing with a civilization hundreds or thousands of years ahead of us? If technology advanced at a steady clip, would we even recognize their spaceships for what they are?

It almost seems as if UFOs appear to represent an advanced technology all right, but not that advanced. So the 1897 airships, assuming they weren’t all hoaxes staged by newspapers seeking to boost circulation, may have been advanced for the time. But not too advanced.

UFOs appear to travel faster and outmaneuver conventional Earth aircraft, but they aren’t too advanced. You can recognize them as aircraft as we understand aircraft to be.

Now that may indeed be their true form. But that would assume that they haven’t learned much on the road towards perfecting star travel. Well, maybe their scout ships don’t need warp drive, so they use something more conventional; at least conventional to them.

But is it at all possible that we are seeing a variation on the cloaking device theme that’s intended as camouflage? Their true appearance is shielded because they don’t want to alarm us too much about them, and hence what we see isn’t too extraordinary.

Then again ET could just cloak itself and be done with it, unless they wanted us to see them in whatever form in which they present themselves.

Or perhaps the real spaceship is the one that’s cloaked — thus invisible — and some sort of holographic projection is used to generate what we identity as UFOs. Perhaps it’s all sleight of hand, where the real action is happening elsewhere, an example of some sort of misdirection.

But why would they even bother unless they were engaged in activities they didn’t want us to know about? Even then, it would hardly make much sense to thus occupy our attention unless they wanted to create false impressions of what they truly are.

For the most part, UFO researchers are apt to take these things at face value. It’s some sort of advanced aircraft, and if it exceeds the level of our technology, and what we believe might be under development in top secret test labs, a highly advanced civilization from another planet must be behind it. Or perhaps more than one civilization.

There is certainly little doubt that the governments of Earth have been more interested in UFOs than we might have expected. At the very least, UFOs would present potential natural security concerns. Imagine an aircraft penetrating a country’s borders and flittering about oblivious to any concerns about violating airspace. Maybe ET comes from a planet with a population that isn’t divided into tribes or countries. It’s all about one people — or creature — for better or worse.

It reminds me of the lyrical phrase in John Lennon’s “Imagine,” about there being no countries. Well, it would certainly eliminate a host of problems since many of the reasons for war would no longer exist unless it’s a conflict between planets. But that wouldn’t necessarily stop people from forming little groups, or cliques, and engaging in conflicts with outsiders.

But the “one step beyond” phenomenon may actually mean that we aren’t dealing with a physical phenomenon after all. It’s not about cloaking or impersonating a different form of aircraft. It’s about being a creation of a collective reality. Co-creation?

Do we actually perceive the phenomenon, whatever it is, and interpret it in accordance with our culture? That might explain the different forms UFOs have taken over the years, so what is the real form?

Humans possess the hubris to think that we have all the goods, and that we are now advanced enough to see UFOs as they really are, assuming there is no collective unconscious in the picture.

But even if physical spaceships are involved, what we see may not be what we get.

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