Vallee: Author of the Impossible

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Vallee: Author of the Impossible

Jefferey Kripal

Quote:The group’s basic theory as publicly explained by Vallee is a difficult truth for most people to swallow. No, I take that back: it’s an impossible one. What he was arguing, after all, is that UFO appearances may be part of a huge “control system,” a kind of mythological thermostat on the planet designed to adjust and control the belief systems of entire cultures over immense expanses of times.3 As he described it in his journals, this control system “acts upon human consciousness, preventing it from going beyond certain limits” (FS 2.454). Vallee seems to have in mind a kind of cosmic Puppet Master, a “manufacturer of unavoidable events,” as he puts it in one of his short stories, who pulls the strings of history from above and prevents us from developing our own psychic potentials.4 The religious doctrines and mythologies of the human imagination are the main object of control and adjustment here. Put crudely, we are being manipulated by our own belief systems, which are in turn being implanted, influenced, and guided by “alien” forces well outside our conscious selves.

The precise nature of this “outside” is debatable, and Vallee never stops suggesting that that outside may still be a human one, that is, I gather, that we are all part of some immense form of Mind or Cosmic Consciousness that is playing tricks on itself...

Quote:Toward this end, Vallee had offered five working theses in The Invisible College. First, he points out, humorously but accurately, that, “unidentified flying objects are neither objects nor flying.” They commonly materialize and dematerialize at will and often synchronize with the subjective states of those witnessing them (for example, they are sometimes “announced” precognitively in dreams), which eliminates the simplistic term “object” from any proper description. Moreover, they maneuver in ways that violate the most basic laws of possible flight patterns, which renders a term like “flying” equally suspect. Second, UFOs have been active throughout human history, always appearing and acting in the cultural terms of the place and time. This, of course, is essentially the thesis of Passport to Magonia. Third, the structure of space-time as we know it implies that the question “Where do they come from?” may be meaningless, and may be better asked as “When do they come from?” That is, UFOs may come from a place in time, in the future, no doubt, perhaps even our own future. Fourth, the key to the UFO phenomenon “lies in the psychic effects it produces (or the psychic awareness it makes possible) in its observers.” Vallee writes here of lives deeply changed by encounters with UFOs and of “unusual talents” developing with which their possessors may find it very difficult to cope.

Fifth and finally, Vallee sees meaning in the absurdity of the narratives, a meaning he will call the meta-logic of the encounter stories. Such a meta-logic, which appears as absurdity from the outside, more or less guarantees that the encounters will be rejected by the elite members of the target society (that is, by professional academics and scientists), even as the symbols conveyed through the encounters are absorbed at a very deep and much more lasting unconscious level. The absurdity of the extraterrestrial explanation, in other words, is a kind of intentional ruse or cloaking technique that allows the phenomenon to accomplish its real work, which is symbolic and mythological.
'Historically, we may regard materialism as a system of dogma set up to combat orthodox dogma...Accordingly we find that, as ancient orthodoxies disintegrate, materialism more and more gives way to scepticism.'

- Bertrand Russell

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