Monday, August 14, 2017

Otto Viking - Bishop and Ufologist

During the first years of the 1960s Danish ufologist Ole Henningsen paid several visits to Otto Viking (1885-1966) and his wife Anna at their home, Besant Garden, near Nakskov, Denmark. Otto Viking was since 1946 Bishop of the Scandinavian Liberal Catholic Church and an internationally well known Theosophist. His wife, Anna, had worked as a Circus Princess for many years. A rather unusual alliance. But Otto was a rather unusual Bishop as he also had a deep interest in UFO contacts and had written a novel about the covert activities of a secret society of Venusians operating on Earth. It was their common interest in UFOs that was the cause of Ole Henningsen´s visits to Besant Garden. Ole has kindly forwarded some photos from his visit in 1962.

Ole Henningsen

Otto Viking 1962, photo by Ole Henningsen

Anna Viking 1962

Already in 1955 Otto Viking had written an article in Flying Saucer Review (FSR), Flying Saucers and Religion by ”Monseigneur Otto E. Viking” It reflected the ideas and hopes of several Theosophists during these years that highly evolved Venusians were coming to help our planet at a critical period in Earth´s evolution. Otto Viking expressed these ideas in his article: ”If we can be fairly certain that the people coming from other worlds are more evolved than our own humanity, there may still be hope for our survival… It is not unreasonable to suppose, therefore, that a race that has conquered space and speed will, in all probability also have attained this super consciousness, because it will be in the normal order of things. And if this is so, religion may bid our visitors from other worlds a hearty welcome as our saviors from global suicide and inaugurators of a world religion to replace all old ”Tribal” ones, and so make a world peace not only a beautiful dream but a living reality.” (Flying Saucer Review, vol. 1, no. 5, Nov-Dec. 1955, pp. 19-20).

Otto Viking

In these ideas the Theosophists differed from many Antroposophists who regarded and still regard UFO manifestations as demonic, inspired by Ahriman. In his book Flying Saucers. Physical and Spiritual Aspects, Anthroposophist Dr. George Unger writes: ” "True spiritual experiences should come to man in our time but Ahriman is distorting them into pictures of UFOs".  Flying Saucer Review editor Gordon Creighton was heavily influenced by these ideas during the later years of the FSR era. Incidentally, this is also the view shared by many fundamentalist Christians.

Otto Viking travelled all over the world, meeting Theosophists and colleagues in the Liberal Catholic Church. During a lecture in Johannesburg, South Africa, Summer 1959, the well known contactee Elisabeth Klarer was among the audience. In a letter to his friend Ms Edith Nicolaisen, founder of the Swedish new age publishing house Parthenon, Otto Viking told what happened: ”Mrs Klarer attended one of my lectures in Johannesburg and we were introduced by a common friend. We had a long and interesting conversation after the lecture, which Mrs Klarer commended very favorably and, what interested me specifically, she said that ”the philosophy and lifeview you presented in the lecture is entirely in accordance with the Venusians”. Mrs Klarer made a very strong impression of being a totally truthful, reliable and sterling personality whos word I would not doubt.” (Letter July 10, 1959).

Elisabeth Klarer

Already in 1954 Otto Viking had finished the manuscript to his novel En klode griber ind. But he couldn´t find a publisher. Edith Nicolaisen entertained plans to publish a Swedish edition by Parthenon (founded 1957) but these plans never materialized. The book was finally privately printed in 1961, with illustrations by Martin Poser. An English translation, A World Intervenes, was published by Exposition Press, New York 1964 but with no illustrations. This volume is obviously very rare. I bought the last copy from Amazon a couple of years ago and now I only find one copy aviable from AbeBooks.

In the book we can follow the fascinating story of the young Danish couple and peace activists, Ole and Anna, who one day receive a letter suggesting co-operation with another organization. This group claims superior means to prevent the catastrophe threatening civilization. The letter is signed Lami and this individual promise a visit in the near future.

When Lami appear Ole and Anna are told that he is working for a secret organization helping this planet during a critical evolutionary period. They are also told he does not belong to this planet but comes from Venus. The Venusians have followed our evolution for hundreds of years. In the 1940s they were allowed by the inner government of the solar system to establish a colony in Antarctica and actively interfere with our culture because humanity had began using nuclear weapons. Lami offer Ole and Anna to become secret agents for this organization but they must remain absolutely silent about their involvement.

Otto Viking

The work will imply education at the colony. Ole and Anna enlist enthusiastically and Lami explain he will fetch them in his ”vimana” or ”flying saucer”. They must also keep the existence of the colony secret as it is protected with various advanced technology and they wish no interference. In several chapters the education and work with the Venusians is narrated. After many adventures and complications the secret organization succeeds in establishing peace between all nations on Earth.
En klode griber ind was reviewed in the Swedish magazine Graal 1961, edited by Ingrid Nyborg-Fjellander, wife of Sigfrid Fjellander, Bishop in the Swedish Liberal Catholic Church. The couple were close friends to Otto and Anna Viking. In his review Jan Fjellander, activist in UFO and new age groups, wrote: ”If you are aquainted with ufology… one starts to wonder whether this is a novel, if it is only fantasy? From where have Bishop Otto Viking got his ideas? En klode griber ind is written with true intuition and makes you wonder: Is this the truth about the flying saucers?”

During the 1950s and 60s there was a strong overlap in membership between Theosophists and ufologists. Leading Theosophists such as Edward L. Gardner, Boris de Zirkoff, Geoffrey Hodson and N. Sri Ram wrote articles about flying saucers. The Swedish UFO movement was initially founded by members active in the Theosophical Society (Adyar). The history of this connection between ufology and the Esoteric Tradition is still not very well known and should be of interest to scholars of Western Esotericism.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

The Contactee Who Drove a MIB-car

In my large research file on the Richard Höglund contact case there are several very unusual and intriguing experiences and statements, coming from a Swedish labourer in the 1960s. Very few of the general public in Sweden at that time knew anything of the Men-In-Black (MIB) phenomenon. But Richard Höglund narrates som surprising experiences during his work with the alien visitors in the Bahamas.

Richard wrote a letter from Nassau to his friend Gösta Johansson, January 11, 1969: ”I hope that one day I can tell you why we are here, but now it is impossible. We have our own car here, a large black Cadillac. But you must understand we are under a certain control.” Later Richard narrated some further details about the car to Gösta Johansson: ”They had stayed at a villa (in Nassau) and he had driven an old, black Cadillac. It was old but looked like brand new. It was good driving but the strange thing was, you couldn´t collide with it, as it turned away by itself. The car had a magical eye, that´s what Richard called it. Very easy to drive when you found out how it worked.” (Interview with Gösta Johansson February 13, 1980).

Researchers of close encounter and contact experiences will immediately recognize this description as the classic cars used by the so-called Men-In-Black (MIB). John Keel encountered them several times during his investigations in the 1960s. “On a number of occasions I actually saw the phantom Cadillacs as advertised, complete with sinister-looking passengers in black suits. On Long Island, following the directions given me in an anonymous phone call, I pursued one of these cars down a dead-end road where it seemingly vanished into thin air (there were no side roads or turn-offs).” (John Keel, The Eighth Tower, p. 141)

There are hundreds of MIB-cases documented but I have never heard of a contactee working with an alien group, that has been allowed to use a MIB-car. Richard ones told Gösta Johansson: ”I have even been entrusted with taking care of their car”. (Nov 6, 1984). This car was obviously owned by a very special individual, Lou Chesler, active in real-estate development in the Bahamas and a frontman for organized crime boss Meyer Lansky. Richard Höglund and his wife Gunvor worked for a time in 1968-1969 in the house of Lou Chesler and according to Richard he also met some of his alien visitors there on several occasions.

Richard Höglund in Nassau, Bahamas

The connection between alien visitors and the mafia is certainly a riddle. Many times I have wondered if the complicated contact story of Richard Höglund was actually a front for some type of organized criminal activity or espionage? A sort of false flag operation to use a modern terminology. But the problem is that there are too much circumstantial evidence indicating real alien contacts.

To get some kind of overview of the aliens involved with Richard Höglund I have made a summary of quotes from different witnesses I have interviewed. GH- Gösta Johansson, SJ – Sture Johansson, TJ – Turid Johansson, GH – Gunvor Höglund (wife of Richard Höglund). Readers not familiar with the case can find a summary in Earth An Alien Enterprise by Timothy Good (pp. 165-180) and more information here, here and here.

Physical apperance
Re. Photos of the aliens: ”I saw several pictures he had taken. None of them could be seen on the photos. Instead there was a lighted square, like the photos had been damaged by light” (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
”They could disappear into thin air. He told me that he had been sitting on a bench in the Bahamas, talking to two of them. When some people passed by he felt very ashamed because suddenly he was sitting alone talking. They were gone. But otherwise they seemed totally material. (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
”They were brown, like suntanned, dark eyes. Richard said they were musical and some of them interested in art. But on the other hand also totally insensitive to humans. (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
”Richards aliens had long fingers and pointed noses.” (GJ, May 24, 1978)
”Richard had never seen them eat, only drinking, even liquor. There were no women among them in the Bahamas.” (GJ, Oct. 23 1980)

Gunvor Höglund, wife of Richard Höglund

”He doesn´t trust them. They say they don´t want an inch of our planet but maybe that is just talk and they have destroyed their own planet or something. He doesn´t even believe they are telepathic. (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
”They were not telepathic, maybe they had some form of technical device as help. Neither does he regard them as especially intelligent. If you ask them something you will not get an immediate answer. But the next time you meet them the answer may be given when they have talked to their leaders.” (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)

”They are here in two-year periods, then they go home. I asked from what planet the came. It was in the outskirts of our solar system.” (TJ, Oct. 27, 1973)
”They belong to our solar system. The people he had most contact with belong to our solar system” GH, June 1, 1984)

Gösta Johansson, close friend of Richard Höglund

”Richard could not stand up in the crafts. They were semitransparent. No cooking facilities. He did travel in their craft but I don´t think it was many times. He said the trip went extremely fast. They arrived in just a moment. But he became ill on these travels.” (GH,  June 1, 1984)

Richard´s work for the aliens
Somehow he was a spy, but no ordinary spy. (GJ,  Feb. 13, 1980)
Richard once said that he translated from some kind of computer language to Swedish. He got papers from them with only numbers. The numbers faded for each day and he had to translate before they were gone.” (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
They spent much time on Paradise Islands. They had a base on an atoll far out. (GJ,  Feb 13, 1980)
Richard met a Russian in the Bahamas who had been in contact for twenty years. Other contactees were backed up by organizations and travelled free but Richard hadn´t succeeded with that for which he was heavily criticized. (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
”I cannot and am not allowed to disclose what we are doing here but I can reveal that we are attending a sort of school and then you realize that there are interplanetary teachers involved.” (Postcard from RH, Jan. 16, 1969).

Richard in 1974

”Richard was to help them prevent a third world war.” (GJ, May 24, 1978.
”After the third trip to the Bahamas Richard was picked up, travelling in the saucers. He drove to a secret place were ha could park his car. He became sick during his first trip. (GJ, Mars 5, 1981).
”After the first trip to Mexico, Richard travelled many times and was gone around one month. When he came home he was suntanned.” ( GJ, Mars 1, 1984)
”Richards basic motivation for working with the aliens was that he believed helping them preventing a third world war.” (GJ, Mars 22, 1985)
”Richard had small notes with numbers on them that he translated. During his last years he said concerning these notes: I have some notes here and I have to hurry before they fade. They faded in about two weeks. (GJ, May 3, 1986)
”He believed somehow that he was to get money from them, get some kind of help, but that never happened.” (GH, June 1, 1984)

Good or evil?
”Gunvor believes she has seen the angels of God, but I don´t think so, said Richard”. (Gösta (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)
There was a black man, called Loftin, and a Russian on the same course. Loftin proved to be a CIA-agent and was later found on Little Exuma with a hole in his head. He had revealed some things so he was shot, executed. (GJ, Feb. 13, 1980)

Loftin and Richard in Nassau

Among them he felt like a monkey in the Zoo. They are totally callous and can witness the most brutal torture. It doesn´t affect them the least.” (GJ, Feb 13, 1980)
”Sometimes I wonder if humanity has lice. Someone is living on us and let us do the work for them? According to Johny Lindell (contactee) that is the truth. The Mafia have to pay them money”. (GJ, feb 13, 1980)
”They said that money is no problem, the world is full of money” (GJ, May 24, 1984)
”Gunvor confessed she had not told all she knew. Still she was afaid she had talked too much” (GJ, June 4, 1984)
”After the second trip to the Bahamas Richard told Gösta Johansson: Quit your UFO interest. They don´t like people prying into this.” (GJ, Nov. 6, 1984)
”Richard ones said: They can witness the most terrible torture and it doesn´t matter anything to them. They are not morally advanced, regarding us a domestic animals.” (GJ, Nov 6, 1984)
”Sometimes after the trip to Mexico 1968 Richard said: I have been forbidden to write but this aught to come out somehow”. (GJ, Oct. 28, 1985)
”According to Johny Lindell Richard´s aliens were a mafia”. (GJ, June 26, 1991)
”The moved their base when Loftin died in the Summer of 1968. He disclosed where their base was located to the CIA. Suddenly there were CIA-agents everywhere, Richard narrated.” (SJ, Oct. 27, 1973).
”He said he really doesn´t know what they want. Personally he believes they are enslaving us. He doesn´t dare to pull out because then he will not be alive. There have been six or seven contactees but only two are left, working as couriers. The others have been terminated, none of them are alive.” (SJ, Oct. 27, 1973)
”I always carry some pills in case I cannot take it anymore. You don´t know what kind of hell I´m living in”. (TJ, Oct. 27, 1973)
”My name must have come up in a lottery somewhere” (GJ, June 1, 1984)

Richard and Gunvor in the Bahamas

Richard Höglund was a reluctant contactee. During his first contact experience he claimed his kidneys had been healed by a group of aliens and because of that he, from the beginning, felt compelled to work for them in various international schemes. Richard travelled to their bases in Bahamas and Mexico during his active involvement with the alien group between 1965-1977. But he differed from the ordinary contactee in that he was very doubtful regarding their true motives and noted that their morals were not very  high. Richard was actually afraid of these aliens and didn´t always believe what they told him. "I don´t know if they are Gods or devils", he once told his friend Gösta Johansson. He didn´t dare stop working for them and towards the end of his life he told my ufologist collegue Åke Franzén to beware of this group as they were dangerous. Whatever happened to Richard Höglund circumstantial evidence clearly indicates that he was involved with some secret group, whether a spy organization, international mafia or alien earth based group.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The José Higgins Close Encounter 1947

During my many years of investigation and documentation of the Richard Höglund contact case I discovered an old close encounter report from Brazil with many similarities to Richard´s first contact with the space people, December 9, 1965. The incident occurred on July 23, 1947 northeast of Pitanga, Brazil. 

Swedish artist Max Magnus Norman´s illustration of Richard Höglund´s close encounter

Here is a short summary of the case:
Hearing a whistling sound, Jose C Higgins, a topographer, saw coming down a lens shaped object with surrounding flange; it landed 150 ft away. It was of gray white metal, about 150 ft in diameter with a 3 foot rim, and 15 ft high, "crossed by tubes in several directions," the whistling coming from these. Metallic legs, which bent a little, supported the craft. Walking closer, he saw through a black glass window 2 persons watching him; a door opened beneath the rim, and there emerged 3 people enveloped in inflated transparent suits, with metal boxes on their backs. They wore shirts and shorts, which looked as though made of paper rather than cloth. Their heads were almost hairless, their eyes round and large, and their legs relatively long; they were nearly 7 ft tall. All 3 looked identical.

They spoke in an unknown language, and he noticed that they kept in the shade except for brief periods. One, pointing a metal tube at him, motioned Higgins to enter the door, through which he could see an inner door and the end of a "pipe." Using gestures, Higgins asked where they came from. One drew on the ground a dot (the sun, "Alamo" in their language) surrounded by 7 circles, and pointed alternately to the seventh circle (called "Orque" Uranus) and to their craft. Not wishing to go there, Higgins showed them a picture of his wife, indicating that he did not want to leave her, and the allowed him to go. From the forest he looked back to see them "playing like children, jumping in the air and throwing enormous stones." After half an hour, having "carefully examined their surroundings," they re-entered and the craft took off.

Especially interesting was that the Brazilian observation occurred already on July 23, 1947. It was first printed on August 8, 1947, in Diario Da Tarde and the Correio Do Norroste, in Bauru. It was rediscovered by journalist Joao Martins and reviewed in the large magazine O Cruzeiro November 13, 1954 with an illustration by the artist Mauro. The report was translated and forwarded to APRO by Brazilian ufologist Olavo T. Fontes. This translation was printed in The APRO Bulletin, May 1961 and also in FlyingSaucer Review vol 7, no. 6, Nov-Dec. 1961.

Part of Joao Martins´article in O Cruzeiro

Unfortunately there was no more data to be found on this case and no follow-up investigation. So beginning in 1991 I decided to search for additional information. After several failed attempts I received a kind reply from American journalist and ufologist Bob Pratt, who had investigated hundreds of UFO incidents in Brazil and other South American countries. He is the author of UFO Danger Zone (1996). Somewhat to my surprise he had never heard of the José Higgins case but gave his view of the story: ”I don´t know how many cases I´ve investigated there, but it´s easily at least 200 and maybe more than 300. And based on some of the stories  I´ve heard, I´m not surprised by what José Higgins reported, nor do I have any doubts that the incident probably occurred as he said. There are several elements in his story that I have heard in other cases – people frightened and running away, the UFO landing in front of the witness, people getting out and talking in an unintelligible language, the sketch in the dirt showing the ”location” of their home planet or whatever, and the occupants playing ”games” as the witness hid in the woods.” (Letter March 30, 1993).

Bob Pratt gave me the adress to two well known Brazilian ufologists, Irene Granchi and Alberto Francisco Do Carmo. In a letter May 11, 1993 Do Carmo made a few comments on the José Higgins encounter: ”Unfortunately, the Higgins case is that kind of good case that got lost in the crowd. I talked to Joao Martins in person and he hardly remembered it. Let me remind you: Joaoa Martins was one of the best reporters in Brazil, worked for ” O Cruzeiro” a magazine as important as LIFE was for the American public… My opinions about O´Higgins case are most of all judgements of value, since I never had the faintest opportunity of meeting the witness in person… He told his story and vanished in the crowd without no newsmedia publicity, lecture tours and alike.”

From Irene Granchi I received som additional information. She phoned her friend Joao Martins who mentioned that this case could be found on page 75 of his book As Chaves Do Misterio. Irene Granchi checked the original article and the book by Martins and made some additions and corrections of the translation. This information is of interest to all researchers so I reproduce this part of her letter.

Here some of the intriguing similarities between the Jose Higgins and Richard Höglund close enounters:
Higgins: ”… he heard a high-pitched, piercing whistling sound, which seemed to come from the sky.”
Höglund: ”Suddenly Lizzi (dog) run around like crazy in circles so that he eventually has to quiet her. Soon afterwards he heard a whining sound that is reminiscent of when artillery pieces fly through the air.”

Higgins: ”… three people came out. They were enclosed in a kind of transparent suit which enveloped their bodies completely, head and all and inflated like a rubber bag full of compressed air.”
Höglund: ”The entities are wholly embedded in clothing similar to plastic covers, fully transparent.”

Higgins: ”They had no beards… almost hairless… they were somehow beautiful and appeared in excellent health”.
Höglund: ”The entities are of medium height and similar to humans but they are completely hairless… The skin is smooth without the slightest blemish.  Likewise, they have perfect teeth.”

Higgins: ”One of the men on the outside carried a tube which appeared to be of the same metal of the ship, which he pointed at Higgins.”
Höglund: ”Then the old man goes back to the spacecraft and float up in the same way as he came down. He returns shortly and then with a cylindrical object that resembles a microphone, about three centimeters in diameter.”

Higgins: ”… they moved with incredible agility, forming a triangle around him.”
Höglund: ”
Then the entities make up a circle around Richard and join hands to show they have friendly intentions.”

Higgins: ”They were playing like children, jumping in the air and throwing stones of enormous size.”
Höglund: ”The entities are very amazed that Richard has hair on his head. They laugh and point at him and obviously find the this quite amusing.”

One of the entities encountered by Richard Höglund

Could Richard Höglund had been informed or read about the Higgins encounter? This is highly unlikely. The story was published in APRO Bulletin and Flying Saucer Review 1961. Richard had very little formal education and no knowledge of English. The similarities between these two close encounters from 1947 and 1965 are certainly fascinating.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The spiritual quest of George Hunt Williamson

The golden era of UFO contactees, the 1950s, is still in many respects an uncharted territory when it comes to serious research and documentation. A pioneering effort was made by Lou Zinsstag and Timothy Good in George Adamski. The Untold Story (1983), followed by New Zealand journalist Tony Brunt´s George Adamski. The Toughest Job in the World (2010). A very interesting biography, Contactee. Was Daniel Fry Telling the Truth?, was published by Sean Donovan in 2013. But still there is no in-depth documentation or biographies of Orfeo Angelucci, George and Dorris Van Tassel, Paul Vest or Howard Menger.

It was therefore with great anticipation when, about a year ago, I received a review copy of The Incredible Life of George Hunt Williamson by Michel Zirger and Maurizio Martinelli. The book is an impressive, 395 pages, documentation based on fifteen years of research and rare archival material, notebooks, correspondence, photos etc, acquired by Michel Zirger. When reading the book I soon realized that reviewing this work was not an easy task. It is not very well organized. There is no linear narrative and the two authors mix events, biographical data and personal theories in various chapters. Eight chapters are written by Zirger and five are from the pen of Martinelli. Another problem was the seemingly uncritical endorsement of the teachings and claims channeled by George Hunt Williamson. In this respect the biography is more like a hagiography. I let the book rest on my shelf but finally decided that this important documentation should be reviewed not just as another UFO book but evaluated also from an esoteric viewpoint.

In UFO history George Hunt Williamson (1926-1986) is perhaps best remembered as one of the six witnesses to George Adamski´s meeting with a Venusian in the California Desert on November 20, 1952. All his life Williamson asserted the veracity of this contact experience as documented with several quotes by the authors. During a lecture in Sao Paolo, Brazil on July 21, 1958 one of the listeners asked him about this event and whether he really observed the cigar-shaped ship over Desert Center: ”The answer is easy, yes! And all other persons present also. It was rather high in the sky, but I was able to observe it for a long time through binoculars. It was a large silvery, metallic-looking cigarr reflecting th sun… And let me anticipate the other question that certainly someone will ask me: yes I did see George Adamski talking in the distance to ”someone” , whom you know now under the name of Orthon… the account of the events made by Adamski in Flying Saucers Have Landed is accurate and true”. (p. 160-161).

George Hunt Williamson 1953

It is reasonable to assume that Williamson´s participation in this historical contact would have resulted in many years of friendship and co-operation with Adamski. But this was not so. As Michel Zirger narrates the association with George Adamski lasted only one month (p. 99). The reason being a difference of opinion regarding the reliability of channeling. Adamski always urged his co-workers not to accept channeled messages indiscriminately: ”You can never check on the sender of a trance message. Every mock spirit or evil impersonator could come and tell you that his name was Ashtar or Aetherius and that he lived in a space ship. I think that these entities are having a heyday leading astray the gullible mediums and their public… This is not to belittle mediums in any way, but it is to say that most of them have much to learn before they can be sure of just what they are receiving, and from whom and where.” (Zinsstag & Good, George Adamski – the Untold Story, pp. 55, 57).

Unfortunately George Hunt Williamson did not heed this wise warning from Adamski but chose a very different path. On November 20, 1953 Williamson met William Dudley Pelley (1890-1965) who from now on became his ”intellectual guide” (p. 204) and ”inspirational master” (p. 313). A very unfortunate choice of ”master”. After an out-of-body experience in 1927 Pelley started channeling various entities via automatic writing. Inspired by Adolf Hitler´s National Socialism and his channeled messages Pelley in 1933 founded the Silver Legion, better known as the Silver Shirts, modelled after Hitler´s Brown Shirts. Because of his politial activities Pelley was charged with high treason and sedition and spent seven years in prison. After release in 1950 Pelley moved to Noblesville, Indiana where he founded Soulcraft Press and the magazine Valor. During four or five month in 1954 Williamson worked as associate editor of Valor magazine and chief of the research laboratories at Soulcraft headquarters.

Proceedings, vol. 2, no. 17, June 15, 1954

In connection with a lecture in Detroit, December 1954, Williamson found ”the second important association” in his life, Dr. Charles Laughead and his wife Lillian. This meeting developed into a long friendship. Together this group held many channeling sessions with Williamson as medium and Lillian Laughead as scribe: ”After putting himself in a meditative trance,George Hunt Williamson served as a channel for various extra or supra-terrestrial entities who expressed themselves through him, each with voices stunningly different from his own. Perhaps the most notable among them was the enigmatic ”Brother Philip”, affiliated to the no less enigmatic ”Monastery of the Seven Rays”, supposedly hidden in the heart of the Andes.” (p. 103). Dr. Charles Laughed and his wife also became involved in the famous failed prophecy of channeler Dorothy Martin (later Sister Thedra) who predicted the end of the world in a great flood on December 21, 1954. The activities of this group were documented in the classic social and psychological study When Prophecy Fails (1956).

Undeterred by this failed prophecy the group continued receiving messages from various ”Ascended Masters” such as Lord Aramu-Muru and ”El Morya”. Because of a message received in 1956 they decided go to Peru to search for The Monastery of the Seven Rays and to establish a new age center The Abbey”, as an outer expression of the master´s work in South America. With this end in view the members of the group sold their property, left their jobs and headed for Peru, George Hunt Williamson and his wife Betty Jane, the Laugheds and Dorothy Martin. The activities and life in this monastic community established by the group is very well documented by authors Zirger and Martinelli. Much of what happened during the years 1956-1958 has not been known in such detail before. Betty Jane died on August 11, 1958 and Williamson was forced to return to Arizona. The Abbey was then for a while headed by Dorothy Martin or John McCoy.

George Hunt Williamson wrote several books in the 1950s that today are minor underground classics, such as The Saucers Speak (1954), Other Tongues – Other Flesh (1957) and UFOs Confidential (1958), co-authored with his friend John McCoy. His last book written using the old name was Road in the Sky, published in 1959. When Williamson disappeared from the contactee scene in 1961 there was much speculation of what had happened. In 1960 he legally changed his name to Michel d´Obrenovic and claimed to be a descendant of Yugoslavia´s royal family. The last book from Williamson, Secret of the Andes (1961), was written under the pseudonym Brother Philip. Between 1961-1986 few ufologists knew of his activities. In chapter 4, The ”Hidden Years” of Williamson, Michel Zirger has made a commendable effort in documenting what transpired during these years. Always a religious man George Hunt Williamson was ordained a priest in the ”Orthodox Christian Church” and settled in Santa Barbara, California.

As already noted reviewing this book is no easy undertaking. There is an immense amount of research work involved with lots of never before published facts and documents of great value to all researchers, whether ufologists or academic scholars. More problematic is the authors uncritical acceptance of the channeled messages by Williamson, Dorothy Martin (Sister Thedra) and others in the group. Maurizio Martinelli does make some reservations in his Introduction when discussing ”the ultimate source of the various types of messages which Williamson had received… themes that must be approached with great caution” (p. 37).

Unfortunately no such caution or critical discussion can be found in the book. And this is the weak part of this otherwise pioneering work. Any accomplished or erudite esotericist reading the channeled messages of Williamson or Dorothy Martin will immediately notice that this is either astral entities masquerading as ”ascended masters” etc or information coming from the subconscious mind of the channelers. A mixture of Theosophy, spiritualism and mysticism. This is the most common mistake made by students of esotericism – lack of discrimination. The books and channeled messages by George Hunt Williamson is a curious mixture of mysticism and genuine esotericism (the science of the multiverse). John McCoy appears to be the one in the group best aquainted with the more academic Esoteric Tradition, mentioning Blavatsky and Alice Bailey in part II of UFOs Confidential, co-authored with Williamson.

Brother Philip and the Monastery of the Seven Rays are most certainly pure fiction. But these myths have had the unfortunate result that South America is now plagued with various cult groups. According to a report  in the London newspaper The Guardian, November 15, 1986 there are hundreds of new age sects in Peru and Bolivia. An interesting question is whether there could be a real ”safe retreat” or ”protected area” used by the Planetary Guardians in the Andes?

On January 27, 1984 I received a letter from American esotericist Dane Rudhyar regarding a question I had asked about the mystic Brown Landone (one of George Hunt Williamson´s sources): ”I regret to say that I have at present no printed material from Brown Landone, who I never met. I only read many years ago an article or two he had written about the transfer of some of the great planetary Beings from Tibet to the Andes. Apparently they were expecting the Chinese conquest and possibly some other changes not yet experienced as yet. Landon´s assertions were confirmed to me by a person I was close to and who has passed away many years ago, but who should have known at least the basic facts.” There is also an interesting reference in the remarkable work Through the Curtain by Viola Petitt Neal and Shafica Karagulla. Regarding a center in the Andes mountains Viola Petitt Neal is informed by her teacher during a Night Class December 10, 1961: ”… there is a center there where people live. I don´t know anything about it, but there are people in it.” (p. 261). 

The Incredible Life of George Hunt Williamson is a book I can recommend to all serious UFO investigators, in spite of my somewhat critical remarks. It contains a treasure trove of rare and hitherto unknown information about the contactee movement of the 1950s and unique insights into the life of one of the key figures in UFO history.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Creatures from the Twilight Zone

Swedish ufologists Anders Skoglund and Christoffer Mossberg recently came across a very fascinating story told by a woman living in the south of Sweden. I was briefed of this encounter in an email from my UFO research colleagues on June 18. The observation occurred in Tunisia in the 1980s where the family for many years spent their summers. This is only a preliminary report and I hope Anders and Christoffer will continue investigating and documenting this extraordinary case.

Anders Skoglund

Christoffer Mossberg

”It was during Ramadan and me, my husband and two children had visited mother-in-law in the evening. It is around midnight when I drive our car to the house we are building, about 7 kilometers from the city. Our house is situated between two villages. About 150 meters from the house is a railway and from what I remember there were seldom any trains coming. When we approach the railway crossing the red lights begin flashing. We stop just a few meters in front of the railway tracks, waiting for the train.

There is no sound from any train and instead four or five bright creatures appear in front of us, walking in the middle of the tracks. They walk behind each other with arms stretched to the next in line. Their heads are large and round and narrowed at the chin. The beings look straight ahead, never turning towards us. They are extremely thin, almost like skeletons. We can see the bones in their chest. Feet are very small and they almost jump ahead. Their height maybe  two thirds of ours. Actually they looked like very skinny old men.

Drawing by witness

Our children are asleep. Me and my husband remain silent and just stare at these beings. When they had passed the red lights are turned off and we can continue driving. We are still silent, wondering what we have witnessed? I just want to go come home as fast as possible. When finally at home and our children asleep we sit down at the kitchen table and we both asked ourselves – what was it we encountered?

Each of us take a paper and draw a picture of what we observed. I thought this was the best we could do so as not to influence each other. We made similar figures and our memories of the observation were the same. We speculated about UFOs and also another theory. According to local tradition there was once an old well not far from the railway crossing. And beside this well people had encountered jinns on several occasions. Some had even been chased by these jinns. These jinn had the feet of animals with small hoofs.”

This observation is especially intriguing as the beings obviously affected electricity in the railway lights. This is often mentioned in UFO reports but I have no knowledge of this physical effect in creature encounters with no UFO. The comment on jinns is also interesting as there is a rich folklore on these beings in Arabic countries. Jinns are also an important part of Islamic theology and often mentioned in the Quran. There are several classes of jinn, both good and evil. In several respects they can be compared to demons or nature spirits in the Western world. Flying Saucer Review editor GordonCreighton, who became convinced that UFO entities were evil demonic entities sometimes in his articles compared them to jinns.

This encounter in Tunisia has some similarities with an observation made in Estonia 1938 or 1939. In two letters to Swedish ufologist Sven Schalin, 1959, the witness Karl Laiande narrates what he observed together with a friend in the village Juminda, Estonia. The event occurred on the farm owned by the grandparents of Karl Laiande. He first noticed someone trying to crawl through a crevice between a small shed and a fence. Something looking like a human hand appeared and Karl´s first thought was that his younger brother was trying to sneak up on them. But he soon realized this was something entirely different. The being that appeared was no human. Karl made a sketch of the creature attached in the letter.

Sven Schalin 1992

”In height it was about 1,10 m, probably 1,05 m. Very long legs. The chest extremely high, almost like hump and the hemispherical head placed directly on this hump. Across the hemispherical head was a slit. The eyes appeared as two slits. The body seemed to be covered with some green-brown pegamoid (leather) material. When my friend started to run towards the creature it first made no hurry. Not until he was very close did it start running at an incredible speed. He simply rushed pass my friend as close as 1 meter. I was never closer than 30 meters. Suddenly the creature simply disappeared into thin air in front of my friend.”

In his letter Karl Laiande explain that he has tried to find a scientific explanation for this encounter: ”I consider this experience as an undisputable evidence that our planet is visited from space”. His two sisters and uncle to whom he related the observation are convinced he has seen a ”kratt”, a magical creature in Estonian folklore, made by flour and blood from the person who made it.

Drawing by Karl Laiande

The comment made by Karl´s relatives is very interesting as they probably are closer to a correct interpretation than Karl himself, who tries his best to find a reasonable scientific explanation. From an esoteric viewpoint the creature encounters in Tunisia and Estonia open up two possibilities. Either nature spirits using the above forms in materialization or elementals created consciously or unconsciously and temporary appearing in visible form. I would vote for the latter interpretation.

To understand these phenomena we must consult one of the best sources presenting a detailed taxonomy of non-human entities, Theosophist Charles Leadbeater´s classic The Astral Plane, published already in 1895. A magnificent contribution to esotericism as a science of the multiverse. The writings and investigations of Charles Leadbeater are very controversial among Theosophists. One of the reasons being his sometimes rather excentric behavior and controversial sexual activities, documented by Dr. Gregory Tillett in his biography The Elder Brother (1982). But in spite of his faults and mistakes Leadbeater was a pioneer in his research and writing. Commenting on some of his mistakes The Tibetan D.K. still has this to say: "... of his sincerity and of his point of attainment there is no question." (Alice Bailey, Esoteric Psychology II, p. 303).

Inhabitants of the astral plane are classified in four groups in Leadbeater´s study: Human (living), dead, non-human, artificial. It is in the last category we find elementals, consciously or unconsciously formed. Leadbeater explain what happens on the astral plane when the human mind for a long time concentrates and formulates a definite and purposeful thought or wish: ” The effect produced is of the most striking nature. The thought seizes upon the plastic essence, and moulds it instantly into a living being of appropriate form – a being which when once thus created is in no way under the control of its creator, but lives out a life of its own, the length of which is proportionate to the intensity of the thought or wish which called it into existence. (p. 125-126)

In this way anyone with enough concentration and will power can create an artificial entity of any form. This experiment was successfully tried out by a group of parapsychologists in Canada who together created the elemental ”Philip”. They documented the experience in the book Conjuring up Philip. An Adventure in Psychokinesis by Iris M. Owen and Margaret Sparrow (1976). Creating a tulpa, golem or elemental is not recommended. A lesson that was learnt the hard way by Alexandra David-Neal who created a tulpa in the form of a monk. It took her six months of hard struggle to dissolve the phantom. (Alexandra David-Neal, Magic and Mystery in Tibet, pp. 314-315).

In the future the knowledge of how to materialize thought-forms will be known to humanity, according to the Tibetan adept D.K. : ”People will come into incarnation who will have the ability temporarily to create and vitalize these though-forms, and so enable the general public to see them. The time, however, is not yet. There is too much fear, and not enough experience of truth in the world. ” (Alice Bailey, A Treatise of White Magic, pp. 182-183).

Encountering the little people, leprechauns or fairies is usually a nice and fascinating experience. Coming face to face with an elemental can be quite the opposite, depending upon how and for what purpose it was created. Maybe you then should pronounce the words of Rav Zeira said when meeting a golem: "You were created by the sages; return to your dust".