Bizarre and Far Out 1
From a socio-intellectual perspective, epistemological methodologies utilized by modern science can at times appear oddly similar to a number of the features of ancient scriptural traditions; for example, acquiring knowledge through a descending process which is then tested against experience. However, Thompson wonders if the natural limits of empiricism can impede useful inquiry into the human experience of paranormal phenomena. He inquires, “Can Vedic wisdom help us to remove these unnecessary restrictions so that we may gain insight into this important side of nature?”
TRANSCRIPT: Bizarre and Far Out 1. San Diego - August, 1992 / (022)
This is a lecture on bizarre and far out subject matter. I’ll begin by discussing the epistemological issues. Krsna consciousness is of course understood by the process of disciplic succession: absolute knowledge descending from Krsna through the guru parampara. So that's the basic way to understand transcendental knowledge; you have to attain the knowledge from a higher source. It is not possible to attain that knowledge directly through use of our ordinary senses. However, as Drutakarma pointed out in the class he gave, many people today are a bit bewildered when it comes to accepting transcendental knowledge by disciplic succession. And they are oriented towards accepting knowledge on the basis of sense perception, or pratyaksa, and hypothesis, anumana.
Actually, however, most people today accept knowledge on the basis of sabda. Sabda means sound vibration, and the question is, of course, who is speaking. The natural tendency in human beings is to accept knowledge on the basis of what is said by some authorities and people tend to do that today also. But then the question comes of who the authorities are, who should one accept as authorities, what speech can be regarded as valid or worthy of being listened to.
So in the scientific field also we find the same situation. People accept knowledge on the basis of what someone else has said and this is connected with the authority of that person. For example, one may hear that a learned scholar or scientist has come to such and such conclusion. In that case it is deemed to be inadvisable to disagree with that conclusion because, after all, the learned professor or scientist has concluded this.Therefore we should accept that; how can we go against it! He has made such great studies, he is learned, he has a position, let's say in a university; so therefore one should go along with his opinion--it can certainly not be challenged.
So this is a very natural way of thinking. Actually this is quite natural, for human beings to think this way. But then the question comes as to who the authority is. Another point concerning sabda is that in the whole domain of science, knowledge is basically transmitted on the basis of communication. A given person may make an observation or perform an experiment, but not everybody can make that observation or perform that experiment. It’s simply not possible. How many people have tried to reproduce all the major experiments on which physics or chemistry is based? You know nobody can do that! You could spend your lifetime trying to do all those experiments. So besides, many of them require all kinds of material facilities, like a laboratory with all kinds of equipment which is very expensive and so forth.
So in science also a great deal of material, practically everything that a given scientist believes or accepts, is based on hearing from other people within the scientific community. Now there is a social process within science which determines who you should hear from and who you shouldn't hear from. Certain people and certain categories of statement are regarded as acceptable. You can hear those and it's quite proper to take those very seriously as truths. In fact, it would be considered quite improper to not take them as truths. But then there are other categories of subject matter, and also other groups of people, for which it is not acceptable to regard what they say as truths. One should rather reject what they say as nonsense. And this is based on the social processes within science. Within the scientific community you learn to identify those who are acceptable as disseminators of truth and those who should be rejected. This is what happens.
And you do this without investigating the details lying behind people's statements, because first of all, you don't have time to investigate all those details. And you couldn't do it even if you tried because you would have to go to the different places or perform the different experiments and so forth.
Now in science there are two kinds of sensory knowledge that people have: One is knowledge based on experiments that you can perform with some equipment in a laboratory; and the other is based on observation of phenomena that happen according to their own rules, so that you can't make those phenomena happen but you just have to observe them as they come up. An example of the latter would be, say, meteorology, the study of weather. You can't make the weather happen, so if you want to study the weather you have to wait for different weather phenomena to take place. For example, recently there were two hurricanes with 160 miles-an-hour winds. So these don't happen everyday, and so, if you want to study such a hurricane, you have to learn that such a hurricane is about to hit the coast of Florida, let's say, and then you go there in order to study it. Otherwise you just have to take other people's word for it.
So that’s a preliminary on evidence. So what we are doing here is proposing that the basic structure of reality that is described in the Vedic literature is actually true. This is part and parcel of the whole philosophy of Krsna consciousness. For Krsna consciousness to be valid, then what is contained in the Vedic literature must be true. So the Vedic literature gives a complete description of the world. It talks about transcendental subject matter and it also talks about the material world and how different things work in the domain of material energy. So the Vedic literature covers all of reality and it makes very remarkable statements about reality. So according to the disciplic succession the Vedic literature is actually giving a true account of reality. And if you look you see that everything in the Vedic account of reality ties together. It's not that you can neatly leave out a certain part and still have a complete system, but everything is required.
So the situation is that today people are largely basing their idea of reality on modern science. So in modern science, based on sense perception and transmission of information through the social network, a certain picture of reality is built up; and that is accepted as factual. So the scientists are going to reject, scientists and people who are strongly influenced by modern science will tend to reject, the process of acceptance of knowledge by disciplic succession. Both because the process is foreign to them and because the specific knowledge conveyed by disciplic successions seems quite strange to them. In the Vedic literature you have the whole idea of the soul, the subtle body, the transmigration of the soul, mystic powers, demigods and all kinds of very remarkable things which according to the modern scientific view would be regarded as unreal. So that is the basic situation--you have a conflict between the Vedic picture and the picture that you find in modern science.
Now our thesis is that if you take the Vedic picture and just look at that as a hypothesis for scientific consideration, never mind whether it is absolute or not, absolutely true or not, but just consider that as a hypothetical description of the world one can ask how well that actually agrees with sense perception, with observations that people make in the world. And our thesis is that actually the Vedic picture agrees with reality much better than the modern scientific picture. The modern scientific picture works very well for certain categories of evidence. But as you were hearing in the lecture that Drutakarma gave earlier on, scientists themselves reject very large categories of evidence--they are not treating all of the evidence equally.
So this is the general thesis we have If you want to apply the scientific approach and if you look at all of the evidence dispassionately, that is without applying different standards to different types of evidence, you will see that, first of all, the basic theoretical structure of modern science does not agree so well with the evidence that's available; and secondly that this evidence does agree quite well with the Vedic picture. So one may ask, “Well what does this prove?” Ultimately this doesn't prove anything because within science you never have proof. In empirical studies there is never such a thing as proof. Because all evidence ultimately is based on what people report. This gets back to the point I made about sabda. Someone may perform an experiment, he may know what happened but other people later on only hear his report on what happened. Someone may make an observation of a phenomenon and he may know what he saw but other people only know what he said, and still other people only know what somebody said that he said. And that's inevitably the way it has to be unless some of us may have omniscience, so that we can see all and hear all and so forth.
So it's a question of knowledge transmitted through human communication. So sensory knowledge, which is then converted into verbal or written descriptions and transmitted through human society, inevitably is going to be imperfect. Our idea of absolute knowledge being transmitted by disciplic succession assumes that there are persons that are essentially super-human in their characteristics who are transmitting the knowledge, namely, avataras of Krsna and acaryas, who are pure devotees, and so on and so forth. But when one is dealing with ordinary human beings transmitting information, inevitably the process is imperfect. But the scientific process is also imperfect. So one piece of imperfect evidence can be placed side by side with another piece of imperfect evidence and if the two happen to cancel one another out, then at least that eliminates one piece of imperfect evidence. In other words, if you contrast with the modern scientific picture other sense data conveyed through human reports, and those two things cancel out, then the cancellation is done. You can conclude that the scientific theory is in need of a revision, an extension. On the positive side, if a large body of material happens to support the Vedic picture, that is some evidence in favour of the Vedic picture. It's a reason for possibly having faith in the absolute process of disciplic succession and so forth; at least its a motive for considering that there might be a serious option to think about.
So that's the introduction concerning epistemology, to show what is really going on in this kind of discussion. So to go into the specific topic I wanted to talk about today, what I’m going to talk about is a basic property of the Vedic picture of reality, which is very different from the modern scientific picture. And that is that in the modern scientific picture of reality what we see, either directly with our senses or with reasonably powerful instruments, would correspond to the total reality, pretty much. In other words, the idea is that everything that goes on takes place within three-dimensional space, or four-dimensional spacetime if you like the theory of relativity. Within this three-dimensional framework there are atoms, molecules, subatomic particles and so on. You can't see these directly but you can detect them with different kinds of equipment--electron microscopes so on and so forth, helium bubble chambers for subatomic particles and so forth--and basically they make up gross matter, which we directly see, and that's reality; that's what reality is made of. And this reality extends through space for very great distances. And mostly if you get beyond the earth and the solar system you have a near vacuum with just a few little atoms floating through it, and photons of radiation, and that’s about it; and stars, galaxies, and so forth. That’s reality.
According to the Vedic picture there are many different levels of reality and what we see with these eyes is extremely limited. So to illustrate the idea of many different levels of reality--this is described, by the way, in the sankhya philosophy section, for example, in the Third Canto of the Srimad-Bhagavatam--but to illustrate this idea one can make use of a pond with ripples on the surface of the water, as an example. You can imagine, well just to elaborate the example, a long time ago a fellow wrote a book called Flatland, a fellow named Abbott in fact. It was a political satire about a two-dimensional world with two-dimensional people who interacted two-dimensionally, and they engaged in political activities similar to what was going on in England at the time that the thing was written. And in this way he was making different comments politically. But so imagine a two-dimensional world in which there are two-dimensional people with two-dimensional bodies and they are moving around and doing things, saying hello to one another and so forth. So now imagine that their bodies are made of ripples on the surface of water. Ripples can form many different patterns. So imagine a pattern of ripples on water that looks like somebody’s body. So real water ripples won't really do for this because if you did have a pattern of ripples that looked like a person’s body on the surface of a pond, they would simply disperse in all directions and that body would be finished immediately. That's because of the nature of water; but there are wave equations in which the ripples don't behave that way. They have more cohesion, like the equations of quantum mechanics: the Schrodinger equation and so forth.
So we can imagine these bodies, which are just ripple patterns moving about, they interact with one another by sending ripples back and forth from one to the other, just like we’re interacting by sending sound waves back and forth, and also light waves. And those are ripples of a sort; they’re vibrational patterns. So you hear me because I’m vibrating my vocal chords and that makes sound and that goes to your ear and vibrates your ear and so on. So these ripple-pattern-people in this two-dimensional world are communicating with one another, we can imagine. So to them that world of ripple patterns is the total reality and that's all they know. In particular they don't know that this is a pond on which they are situated. They are not aware of that at all because they are just the ripple patterns on the surface.
Now imagine that somebody throws a pebble into the pond. So the pebble goes kerplunk and suddenly these ripples appear, and to the beings in this ripple-pattern world these ripples appeared out of nowhere. It's a miracle! What happened! Something appeared literally out of nowhere! So that’s a fairly crude example.
But now let's take a more sophisticated example. Suppose you made a gadget with little propellers, or something like that, or vibrators or something, so that it would vibrate just beneath the surface of the water; and it had many of these little vibrators arranged in a pattern. So you push the button and this thing turns on, and as soon as it does so and begins vibrating, immediately on the surface of the water a certain pattern of ripples will form. To make it really elaborate, let's say this is the bodies, this is the body, of one of these beings. So just by pushing the button suddenly the little buzzers move, a ripple pattern appears, and that's the body of one of these beings. So now a new being is there. So to the other beings, this being has suddenly appeared out of nowhere--and this is shocking. What's going on?! He appeared out of nowhere, and then he moves around and does things. And it will be even more interesting now if you have a negative vibrator. This vibrator counteracts the vibrations that the first vibrator made and subtracts out those waves. So you turn on the switch for that one, after positioning it properly, under that ripple pattern; and now it erases that pattern of waves from the surface--so that being disappeared. So he was there, he moved around, he did things, and then suddenly he was gone.
So from the point of view of the ripple people this is very amazing, in fact it's fantastic. It's practically unbelievable. Those of them who are superstitious will speak about--it must have been done by God! . . . and so forth. Well actually, in the model I am proposing, in a way it was, but indirectly. If you look at the total picture we have here, you have the pond and you have the gadget underneath, then you see that nothing miraculous is happening. The reason that particular pattern of ripples formed there is that this gadget was turned on that made the pattern. So this is an analogy to the action of mind on ether. I won't go through the whole sankhya philosophy in detail, but basically you have, from the energy of Mahavisnu, you have the pradhana under the action of the time factor injected by Mahavisnu with His glance. The pradhana differentiates and the modes of nature appear, false ego appears, different elements differentiate out. One of these elements is ether. Ether is basically space, but space is not just emptiness. One way to think about space is that it's a vacuum; it's the absence of things. But in this concept of space, space is actually is plenum, its full--plenum just means full, like plenary portion of Visnu. So in addition to ether there is mind, and it's described in the Bhagavatam in the Third Canto that ether is the field of activities for the mind, and the mind can generate forms within the ether. So these forms within the ether can become manifest in terms of gross matter, because it's described that the gross material elements of air, fire, water and earth are transformations of ether. And this is described in detail in the Bhagavatam; it's fairly complex because the tan matras and the senses and so forth are all involved in this. But basically by transformations of ether, gross matter can be produced. And mind can transform ether.
This means that mind, in principle, could produce gross matter. Not only that, it could produce gross matter in particular forms; and it could erase those forms. This is potentially there. And according to the Vedic literature, the universe is populated with many different grades of living beings. In particular, the demigods have the power to manipulate the mind on such a level that they could generate forms, erase forms and so forth. And in the Vedic literature we see many different examples of this. Not only the demigods can do that, but we see examples indicating that asuras can do that. I know the first time I came to a Hare Krishna Temple, which was in Henry Street in New York City, I walked into the Temple and very quickly I was given a Krsna Book to read. So I took that, went over, sat down, started reading and immediately I readed, read (regular verbs!), about shape-changing demons. Different demons assumed different animal forms and they would go to attack Krsna, and then He would despatch them very quickly. So this was somewhat shocking, as I was thinking, “What is this! I mean, is this is what these people believe? I mean really!” But actually, yes, that's what they believe all right! But it's not actually such a remarkable thing.
From the point of view of modern science this is a very remarkable thing. In fact, there is no basis for believing such a thing at all! Because as I was saying, in the picture of the world in modern science, the complete reality is basically there in front of us. And there is no potentiality within that reality to create forms apparently out of nowhere. But in the Vedic scheme of things, mind, by manipulating ether, could generate forms of any desired nature. For example, Kardama Muni did that. We were reading in the Bhagavatam recently that he generated a flying palace. And he himself was astonished by it, because actually the ideas within our mind are not entirely generated by us. We get our ideas from different sources. Actually there are so many different things involved in the source of our ideas - karma, and the Supersoul, and so many different factors. So Kardama Muni had this idea which manifested within his mind and immediately a flying palace was created.
So this brings us to the subject of today’s talk, namely, UFO phenomena, that and paranormal phenomena. So what I’m going to discuss is examples of empirical evidence which corroborate this basic aspect of the Vedic picture of reality--in particular, the idea that forms can be generated from a subtle level, on the level of mind and so forth, and assume gross manifestations. And these forms in turn can then be erased also in the same way. It turns out that there’s a lot of empirical evidence that tends to corroborate this. I was talking about the UFO phenomenon last time and this time I was going to start out with a related subject which comes up. I’ll assume a certain amount of knowledge from the previous class. But what I was going to begin with is the idea of out-of-body experiences. I am going to tie that in with the whole UFO phenomenon.
So here is an example of an out-of-body experience that somebody reported. This was the patient of this doctor named Michael Sabom, who is a cardiologist. So the man was resuscitated from a heart attack, and after recovering he described the following experience. He said that he experienced, “I was walking across this wooden bridge over this running stream of water, and on the opposite side I was looking, and there was Christ, and he was standing with a very white robe. He had jet black hair and a very short black beard. His teeth were extremely white and his eyes were blue, very blue. He looked different from any picture I had seen before. My real focus was on the white robe and if I could prove it to myself that this was really Christ. And during all this time the knowledge, the universal knowledge, opened up to me; and I wanted to capture all of this so that when I was able, I could let people know what was really around them. The only trouble was that I was unable to bring any of it back.” So this is the man’s account.
These accounts are quite common. Sometimes they are called near-death experiences because they often happen when a person, say, has a heart attack or is hit by a car, comes close to death. Various severe medical conditions can bring this on, conditions that disrupt the functioning of the body or of the brain. Sometimes this happens spontaneously. The last time I talked about this, afterwards a man who was listening described to me his whole experience, which was very similar to this, which just happened in his living room one evening. He was just sitting on the sofa, I think, and suddenly he went out of his body, he said, went flying down this tunnel of light and had this kind of experience. And then he described coming back into his body, it was as though he was falling, and he landed in his body with an abrupt jolt. But he didn't have a heart attack or anything like that, nor any obvious medical condition. So this is an example.
Now an experience like this, you can say, “Well, what's happening here!” First of all, is the man really seeing Jesus Christ? First point is, he wasn't sure himself if that's who he was seeing. He thought maybe that is who it was, but he was doubtful, and it didn't look like any picture he’d seen of Jesus Christ. So basically he saw this being who communicated somehow this knowledge to him on a mental level. So you can say, “Well, perhaps this is just a hallucination. Now ultimately you can never rule out the hypothesis of hallucination for these things. Of course, ultimately there’s the question of what a hallucination is anyway. There’s a lot to be known about hallucinations. One way to look at it is that there are different categories of visions that people see. One category of vision is what I am seeing right now. How do I know this isn't a hallucination? Alcoholic stupor can produce many different kinds of vision but these tend to be incoherent, they don't hold together, they swirl about and shift from one to the other very quickly. So that's certainly low quality vision. So the kind of vision this fellow had is fairly frequently reported.
The interesting thing is, first of all I would like to say something to support the serious nature of the out-of-body experiences, and that is that sometimes people also see what is going on in the room where they left their body. Let’s say it's a hospital room, and the doctor is resuscitating them from a heart attack. So they see what the doctors are doing and this Sabom did a whole study in which he cross-examined the witnesses, looked at their medical records, and he found that people who had these experiences were in some cases able to give very accurate accounts of exactly what the doctors did while their mind was supposedly nonfunctional, because no blood was being supplied to the brain because the heart was stopped. For example, this fellow said, one of these people Dr. Sabom described as follows, he said, “His description is extremely accurate in portraying the appearance of both the technique of cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the proper sequence in which this technique is performed, i.e., chest thump, external cardiac massage, airway insertion, administration of medications, and defibrillation.”
So there are a lot of details--it's not a simple process--and this fellow got the details right. But he was not at all knowledgeable about medicine. The guy was some kind of construction worker, or truck driver or, something like that. In any case, that's a whole subject; but we have these examples in which people see these beings. So now I am going to shift to the topic of UFOs. Experiences that people have with UFOs have a lot in common with out-of-body experiences; and many things that are frequently reported seem to be more consistent with the idea that it's an out-of-body experience than with the idea that it happened physically to the person. For example, people will report that these beings came, picked them up, and carried them through a wall, up into the air, and into a UFO. There are lots of reports like this. And by the way, the people who make the reports, as I mentioned the last time, have at least in some cases have been analysed psychologically and found to be perfectly normal people--not psychotic or anything like that.
So what’s going on? One explanation would be that they had an out-of-body experience. This would explain how it is that they went through the wall and so forth. People who have out-of-body experiences do relate that kind of thing; they’ll say they did go through the wall For example, a person may be in one room, and he wonders what's in the next room, and he just goes through the wall and he sees what's in the next room, in these out-of-body experiences. So the UFO accounts are similar to that. There are cases where a person reports a UFO experience after having a classical out-of-body experience.
There’s the case of a man in England who was in the dentist’s chair. The dentist was administering, I guess nitrous oxide or something, in preparation for extracting teeth; and his patient apparently died on him--just died in the chair--and the dentist was quite disturbed. He was doing cardiac massage, thumping the guy’s chest and so forth. And the man experienced that a white robed figure came floating down through the ceiling, took hold of his arm, floated him up through the ceiling into a UFO and took him on a tour of the UFO; and then it became a typical UFO experience. People often report being taken on a tour of the ship and being shown the propulsion system and told incomprehensible things, that actually don't make sense at all, and then taken back. So that's what happened with him. Then the man, the white robed man, said, “Well, when you try to go back you’ll be stopped by these ugly beings, who will try to interfere with you, but just force your way through and you will get back to your body.” So according to his experience he did that, and these beings tried to stop him but he got through, and then he felt himself falling into his body which was on the dentist’s chair. That's a commonly reported experience; you fall into your body abruptly. And then he woke up and the dentist was greatly relieved. So that happens!
So you could say, “Well, looks like these could be out-of-body experiences.” Here is another example: A woman was lying on the couch reading, well, it was the Bible, in her house trailer she said; then she had this experience. She said, “I see myself standing and I see myself lying on the couch. The being had put a small box or something on the couch first and then I saw myself appear there. I see myself standing up and turning toward the being. Then I turn toward the couch and reach down and touch myself, and ahh!! my hand goes right through me!”, she says. So she’s reporting an experience in which this being was there, did something with this box, she has an out-of-body experience, turns around, sees her body there, reaches through her body with her hand. The being however is exactly, for those of you who know of these things, one of the “Gray” beings involved in the UFO abductions. So this took place entirely in an out-of-body state. And then she went through some experience with the UFO and so forth. Or, there are many examples of this.
Answer: Yeah, in the disembodied state she went into the UFO. So there are many cases in which people seem bewildered by this. Like in another case (there’s an interview going on) this Emily says, “Not in the car, but I am in the car. It's silly!” The guy says (McCall), “Don’t worry about it. Just tell me what's going on!” Emily: “That's silly; you can’t do that!” McCall: “Can’t do what?” Emily: “You can’t be in the car and out of the car too! That’s silly, but I am!”
So she’s experiencing seeing her body in the car when she went out of her body. She’s having trouble relating to that. Then she saw the UFO parked across the road; and she went over, and there was some communication with some beings. So that's another example.
So these different types of examples are there. Now, just to given another element to this thing, these white robed beings tend to show up in these UFO accounts. Now there’s one case which is more sort of mundane sounding. Some Italian militia men, I think they were in the reserve forces, were standing on the slopes of Mount Etna, which I believe is in Sicily, and UFO came down, some beings got out, some of them were tall wearing white robes with golden hair and others were short guys with big heads. And they just saw this. Now supposedly they were in an ordinary state of consciousness, or at least so it would seem. These other people were in out-of-body states of consciousness. Now in some cases, what is reported, is that a person will apparently be taken physically on board a UFO; and then they’ll have an out-of-body experience. Now, as an example of this, this person reported being physically taken onto the UFO. So she said, “We’re coming . . .” (now, she was taken to this place somewhere which she thinks actually was under the ocean; there’s a whole description leading up to this point). And in this place she said, “We were coming up to this wall of glass and a huge door, it's made of glass.” And the person asks, “Does it have hinges?” And she says, “No, it is so big and I can't explain it! It is door after door after door after door. He’s stopping there and telling me to stop. He says, “You shall enter the door to see the One.” Now you might ask what the “One” might be. So, and, “I am standing there and coming out of myself. There’s two of me; it's like a twin.”
So she has this out-of-body experience there. She goes through the door and has what sounds like a Brahman type experience. She says, “I went in the door and it's very bright.” “I can't take you any further!” “Why?” “Because I can't take you past this door. Why are you so happy?” “I just can't tell you about it! Words cannot explain it! It's wonderful! It's for everybody. I just can't explain this! I understand that everything is one. Everything fits together! It’s beautiful!” So here you have a case where an out-of-body experience seems to take place after the UFO encounter; and she’s taken through this door, then in an out-of-body experience, and she has this Brahman type realisation. Now I could give you a whole list of examples where happens.
So this is the basic kind of material that you have here. So what is going on? So, just to heighten the mystery a little bit, let’s see, I have various materials, the next thing to do is to discuss what happens, discuss evidence of the physical nature of the UFOs. So the kind of material I was just describing associates UFOs with out-of-body experiences, and you can make a whole case for this. The examples I’ve given can be multiplied extensively. There’re are people who are known to have been sleeping in their beds and after they got up they reported a whole UFO experience that apparently took place in an out-of-body state, and so on and so forth.
So then comes the question of physical reality. So I’ll mention the physical aspect here. Let’s see, let’s try this TV thing. This first thing that I’m going to show (let’s just say what this is): there’s a scientist at IBM named Marcel Vogel; he’s dead now. This Marcel Vogel is the inventor of the magnetic disc coating for hard discs. So he’s the man who brought the hard disc to us, for which we’ll all be indebted to him. So in any case, he’s a scientist who studies materials, so some people brought a sample from a UFO for him to study. Now there is a whole story behind this sample. It's one of the more elaborate, in fact, in which the person has contact with these beings from another star system. He meets them and they talk to him and so on. So they gave him this little metal sample, and that was finally communicated to this Vogel, who looked at it with electron microscopes and all kinds of different equipment to try and figure out what it was made of.
So what I am going show you is a little clip in which he describes his reaction to this metal sample. [video played]:
Vogel: Let me first accuse myself of being negligent, not paying attention. And finally I had to say, “If it happens, it happens.” I didn’t let it bother me. I don’t know how to explain it; I have no way of giving any rational explanation, and at this moment, I must categorize it as a mystery.
Interviewer: I see, and what is the result of this . . .
Vogel: I could not explain the type of material that I have, and its discreteness, by any known combination of materials. I could not put it together myself, as a scientist--to get a combination of thorium, and silver, and silicon in discrete area. Yes, if I was to melt it together, I would see the evidence of all of them, but it’s their discreteness that intrigues me. Do you understand what I’m saying, because, you see, if I were to take these combinations, and put them into a furnace and melt it, and pour it out into a little ingot, I would see all these elements present there in any one area. But I don’t ; I see these discrete bits of material. Now it can only happen by some form of a cold fusion process, where you have the elements present, and you fuse them together, so they still maintain their identity, but they inter-penetrate into one another.
Interviewer: Do you think there is a possibility to find naturally, on this earth, something like this?
Vogel: I’m going to look; I’m intrigued. This is the type of thing I enjoy doing, and it’s also a challenge, because I showed it to one of my friends, he was a metallurgist, and he shook his head, and he said, “I don’t see how it could be put together.” That’s where we are right now. I think it’s important that those of us who are in the scientific world should sit down and do some serious study on these things instead of putting it off as figments of people’s imaginations.
Audience: Does it exist somewhere?
RLT: It finally was lost. But he did this whole analysis on it. So all you’ve got is his testimony, but he’s a genuine fellow. So, one can put it down too, “Well, there’s another . . . [laughter], but that’s Marcel Vogel. So the whole point of that little example is there you have evidence that something physically real is involved with the UFOs. This is also a whole subject--physical evidence, traces found on the ground and so on and so forth. There are hundreds of cases of traces on the ground reportedly made by the UFOs and so forth.
Let’s see, now, I’ll just go through these examples. The next example I am going to show: this is a lady (this refers to another category of evidence that circulates), a lady whose husband supposedly flew alien bodies to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base back in 1947, just to show you that people are telling stories like this, in this case about her late husband. So try and judge the character of the lady as you see her. [video played]
Announcer: There were a number of other flights out of Roswell during this period, including one piloted by Oliver Wendell “Pappy” Henderson.
Interviewer: How did he happen to tell you that he’d been involved with seeing the little bodies with the crashed flying saucer?
Mrs. Henderson: We were in the grocery store, and we were going to check out our groceries, and there were newspapers at the stand, as there always are, and here was this newspaper, and he said, “Well, I guess now that they’re putting it in the paper, I can tell you about it. I’ve been wanting to tell you for years.” He said, “I want you to read this article because it’s a true story; and I not only know that it’s true, but I’m the pilot who flew the wreckage of the UFO to Dayton, Ohio.”
Interviewer: You mentioned that earlier he had seen the bodies. One of them was damaged in some way?
Mrs. Henderson: I think he told me that they were small, they had large heads for their size, and that the material that their suits were made of was different than anything, you know, it was a strange kind of material.
RLT: There is a lot of material along those lines also. This is to indicate that one is dealing with something physical, because certainly if dead bodies can be produced and they lay around and can be flown in airplanes to different places, that would suggest that they’re rather physical. But by the way, notice, referring back to the Krsna Book, that these demonic forms produced by the asuras sometimes were found to lay around as dead bodies after Krsna killed them, which is an interesting thought.
So, let’s see, what more shall I show? Oh, this just came recently on the news. It seems that in Mexico city--remember when there was a solar eclipse about a year ago and it was total in Mexico city--so people were out with cameras and so on to try and photograph the eclipse (not burn out their camera in the process). It said in this, hundreds of people recorded UFOs on their video cassette recorders, an advantage of the proliferation of that technology. So I’ll just show you this, it's kind of intriguing. [video played]
Announcer: And for the first time, because of the home video revolution, thousands of people pointed their video cameras to the skies.
Man: . . . exactly at the time of the full solar eclipse, (unclear) craft appears over the ? , hovers . . . Seventeen people on the ground recorded it on home video. That’s never happened before in the history of UFOlogy.
Announcer: When modern scientists forecasted the date of the historic solar eclipse, they weren’t alone. Some believe the ancient Mayas also predicted the exact date of the eclipse more than 3000 years ago. This Maya calendar made another startling revelation; it predicted that on the day of the eclipse, a new age of enlightenment would begin. It was referred to as the “prophecy of the sixth sun.”
Man: . . . the new sun, signified by the great eclipse that just occurred, speaks of an altering of knowledge. The sixth sun indicates precisely the moment of it's arrival.
Announcer: Strangely, on the day of the eclipse, something did arrive in the skies over Mexico. Hundreds of those home video cameras that were shooting the eclipse had something completely unexpected: UFOs--unidentified flying objects--all videotaped by hundreds of different people. So far, more than 110 home videos have been verified as containing footage of unexplained craft.
RLT: That example just shows that these things are going on. It’s curious, 110 people videotaping unusual objects over Mexico City! Of course, the images weren't too good, but the idea here is to give a concept of these things as having a physical element. What I will turn to now is some additional evidence involving physical effects produced from subtle energy: mind energy or spiritual energy. Of course, the ultimate powerful energy would be spiritual. Krsna’s energy is the ultimate driving force behind everything, and that produces the different subtle energies--mind, intelligence and false ego--and that in turn produces ether, and that transforms into different material forms that we see.
So in Drutakarma’s lecture mention was made of Lourdes in France. Now the story there is that in about, well, the middle of 19th century, a French shepherd girl named Bernadette, uneducated girl, had a vision of the Virgin Mary. That is, she saw this being who was very beautiful, glowing, floating in the air in this grotto, or little cave, near this town of Lourdes in France. And there were several meetings with this being, quite a number of events occurred, but the story goes that a spring appeared there; and some people got the idea that they could be cured of various illnesses by bathing in the spring, and this began to happen. And since that day it has in fact been happening, not very frequently, but at regular intervals.
So the interesting thing about this is the level of the medical testimony that supports this kind of phenomenon. So there is a society of doctors who are specifically studying the cures that occur at Lourdes. And they apply very strict criteria for accepting or rejecting information I won't read all of this but this just gives you an idea of what they do. There . . ., it says:
“The report of the case is then discussed critically at length under 18 headings, a vote being taken at each stage. In the first three stages the committee considers the diagnosis and has to satisfy itself that a correct diagnosis has been made and proven by the production of the results of full physical examination, laboratory investigations, Xray studies and endoscopy and biopsy where applicable. Failure at this stage is commonly because of inadequate investigation or missing documents. At the next two stages the committee must be satisfied that the disease was organic and serious without any significant degree of psychological overlay.”
They’re very much aware that the disease could be psychosomatic.So this goes on for several paragraphs but it gives you an idea--these are cases of reported miraculous cures. So the point is, they had to have a total physical examination before and after with all possible medical technology being applied to evaluate what happened. Yes?
Answer: After the cure has happened then it is reported to them, and if it sounds like it’s a good case then they will investigate it. Otherwise they just reject it immediately. So they went through about 6000 cases and 64 cases met all their criteria. So this is an example of one of them. In this case a man had a cancer that was destroying his hip bone and the upper part of the femur, including the ball and socket joint where the femur goes into the hip bone. And the cancer gradually totally destroyed the bone, so nothing was left; and the tumour was growing bigger and bigger, and the man was practically dead--he was very close to death So he was taken to Lourdes. They dunked him in the spring and it said, “Upon bathing he had sudden sensations of heat moving through his body which is characteristic this kind of healing. We’re not sure what it means, but you hear about it. When he arrived at Lourdes he couldn't eat and had lost vast amounts of weight.” This information is all included in the report. “After being bathed he felt an immediate return of his appetite and an amazing resurgence of energy.” Anyway, he was in a complete body cast because his whole leg was disintegrating. It said, after a month the X-rays showed the (let's see, how did that work?), they took him back to the hospital and nobody believed that he felt better. So he started to gain weight and to be much more active. After about a month his doctors finally consented to take his cast off and take another X-ray. So the tumour was getting smaller and regressing. So okay, this sometimes happens; there is spontaneous remission of cancer, it does happen. So what happened then is within two months the bones in his thigh and hip had completed reconstructed themselves and he was able to walk normally. And in 9 years since that he’s been in perfect health with no problems. It's said here, this is from the report, “A remarkable reconstruction of the iliac bone and the cavity has taken place. X-rays made in 1964/5/8 haven’t encounter a single spontaneous bone reconstruction of such a nature.”
So the whole thing reconstructed. This is something that supposedly happens only in embryos growing in the womb, and then it takes nine months. It reconstructed to the adult stage, of course, within one month, because the tumour disappeared after one month; and one month later the guy was walking, which means everything was back in place. So how did that happen? Of course we don't know how it happened, but that's one example of the idea that subtle energy can organise gross matter.
I just wanted to show you another video tape. This is not a UFO tape. This shows what your body is made of; actually, it's very useful to see this. This is a video tape of cells, particular types of cells. This is what cells do. [video played]:
Announcer: When they touch, the active ruffling membranes, which cause them to move, stop; and the cells become passive. Another part of the cell membrane starts to ruffle, and the cells move away. The significance of contact inhibition is that it demonstrates that cells, rather than migrate over one another, will migrate away from one another. In the cornea, contact inhibition of movement will stop cells from migrating over one another, and force them to become . . .
RLT: I find that interesting because you can see what those cells are like. They’re just sort of globby things moving like this. Your whole body is made of that. This body is just a lump made up of those cells, and they are all like this. So how, you know, does it work anyway? I mean, that in itself is an amazing thing. But even more amazing than that is how can something like that be suddenly put together or taken apart. Quite remarkable. But the idea is the subtle energies can do this kind of thing.