Battle of Los Angeles: the Real Story

Few students of history spend much time examining the Battle of Los Angeles. Some people might have visited the Fort Macarthur Museum and seen the reenactment. Others might have dismissed it as an act of mass hysteria. However, there are individuals who feel that the events that took place February 24-25, 1942 involved extraterrestrial forces from another world. Read More →

A Look Back: Belgium’s UFO Crisis

Alarmed Belgians started to report disc-like objects in the sky on November 25, 1989. These were later believed to be the result of an elaborate nightclub show, but that didn’t change the fact that UFO fever had hit the European nation in a big way.

The “Case”

A black isosceles triangle (shown above) with dancing lights was first spotted by a pair of police officers. No military activity in the region caused the sighting and ultimately, an estimated 13,500 people witnessed the event.

Other witnesses of the object claimed that they heard a sound that resembled the noise that a ventilator makes. They also believed that an object similar to a turbine was spinning behind the apparent alien spacecraft. SOBEPS, the largest UFO organization in Belgium, released at least two volumes detailing the incidents.

Alternative Theory

While it may be disappointing to individuals who put a great deal of stock into the Belgian triangles, at least one scientist argued that the original sighting was caused by exhaust. A pollution cloud coming from a nearby power facility might very well have radiated enough heat to warp the air. Anyone driving on a hot road has seen what heat can do to one’s vision. The lights, for that matter, might very well have come from a smokestack.

Regardless of what caused them, the triangles did cause quite a stir in the small country at the time. What are your thoughts on UFO’s in general? Is there enough evidence that alien crafts are visiting Earth on a regular basis? I remain skeptical however If I were to personally see something in the sky resembling the image above, I have to admit I’d most certainly be alarmed (at the very least). Alas, to date I have yet to personally see a real-life UFO despite the many hours I’ve spent examining the night sky over the years. Perhaps someday I’ll catch a glimpse of something that is worth investigating further. Until then, I’ll continue to indulge my fascination with all the other great things going on up there. Have a great weekend everyone!

Alien Intervention Throughout Human History

The debate over whether alien beings exist continues today with devout believers on one side and skeptics on the other; however the belief in extraterrestrials has gained momentum in modern times. Not surprisingly, believers in alien beings often keep their views private for fear of being ridiculed. Still, many believers maintain that it is pure arrogance to believe that human beings on Earth are the only intelligent life forms in such a vast universe.

Several authors and researchers claim that ancient writings from around the world indicate an extraterrestrial presence in Earth’s past. The Bible is among those ancient documents they often cite. There are also researchers that claim alien beings intervened in human history and even directed the course of our evolution. Perhaps the ancient people had knowledge of these extraterrestrial beings and tried to express that knowledge in their ancient writings.

Did beings similar to ourselves land on Earth thousands of years ago? If so, no doubt they had great technology and could perform feats that would appear as miracles. The primitive beings of Earth would have undoubtedly viewed them as great gods. We must ask ourselves what we would do if we were to visit another planet Perhaps we would only observe the cultures there. But what if we became stranded and had to make that planet our own? Would our level of intellect, technology and beliefs and cultural traditions affect the native culture of the alien world? There is a very good possibility that our presence and interaction would influence the native culture of that planet. Perhaps that is what happened on Earth. If aliens did land on our planet long ago and interact with human beings, we have to wonder if their interaction was inadvertent or intentional. If their interaction was intentional, then what was their agenda?

ANCIENT ALIENS: The Da Vinci Conspiracy | S04E08

This episode examines some of the paintings, sketches and journals of legendary artists and engineer Leonardo Da Vinci, and alleges that some of his work may have been inspired by alien technology he may have encountered. Leonardo da Vinci’s painting…

There are several statements in the Bible that have left some researchers and scholars at odds. Some maintain that the Book of Genesis is referring to more than one God and that the biblical angels may be what we now refer to as aliens. One verse that has raised eyebrows is Genesis 1:26 that states, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness.” Who was God talking to when He made this statement? Since He was the only God, He had to be talking to the angels…or so the theory goes.

Later in Genesis 6 it states, “The sons of God saw the daughters of men were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. The Nephilim were on the earth in those days and also afterward when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them.”

Some people believe that the sons of God were the fallen angels that had followed Satan during the rebellion against God. There are also people who believe the sons of Gods were ancient astronauts who resided on Earth. It is also theorized that whole story relating to the war between God (and the good angels) vs. Satan (and the fallen angels) is actually the ancient telling of a war between two factions of an alien world; or a war between two extraterrestrial races from different planets.

The Bible states that angels were created before human beings and the humans were created as lesser beings than the angels. There seems to be great emphasis on the difference between beings that were created and those that were born. The Bible specifically states that both angels and man were created beings. It is believed that the Nephilim were a hybrid race. There are people who also believe human beings may also be a hybrid race and that the original man and woman, Adam and Eve were genetically engineered. There have been numerous reports of modern alien abductions where people believe that they have been tested or experimented on as well. Cattle mutilations also contribute to this theory since the animals have had their blood drained and parts of their anatomy removed with surgical precision.

There are several ancient writings that mention divine beings that came from the stars or the heavens. There are also drawings and writings about Gods that flew in chariots. The Book of Ezekiel in the Bible is a good example of seeing some sort of craft descend and ascend. Ezekiel 10:106 states, “Now when the cherubim moved, the wheels would go beside them; also when the cherubim lifted up their wings to rise from the ground, the wheels would not turn from beside them.”

There have been sightings of unusually shaped saucers and cigar shaped crafts throughout history that continue in modern times. Sightings of UFOs (Unidentified Flying Objects) have been reported by people such as police officers, airline pilots, and military personnel. While some sightings may be other phenomena or even hoaxes, there are some that clearly remain unexplained. There have also been sightings of USOs (Unidentified Submersible Objects). These objects appear to descend from the sky and submerge into water. They are also seen rising from the water and ascending to the sky.

If alien intervention did take place and a union took place between human beings and extraterrestrials, it seemed to displease God greatly as the following passage indicates. The Book of Jubilees states: “And it came to pass when the children of men began to multiply on the face of the earth and daughters were born unto them, that the angels of God saw them on a certain year of this jubilee, that they were beautiful to look upon; and they took themselves wives of all whom they chose, and they bare unto them sons and they were giants. And lawlessness increased on the earth and all flesh corrupted its way, alike men and cattle and beasts and birds and everything that walks on the earth -all of them corrupted their ways and their orders, and they began to devour each other, and lawlessness increased on the earth and every imagination of the thoughts of all men (was) thus evil continually. And God looked upon the earth, and behold it was corrupt, and all flesh had corrupted its orders, and all that were upon the earth had wrought all manner of evil before His eyes. And He said that He would destroy man and all flesh upon the face of the earth which He had created.”

God was not happy with this intervention and took steps to destroy all flesh that had been corrupted, even the animals. Considering that God had decided to destroy all flesh, we can assume that even the animals had been corrupted in some way. Some believe that extraterrestrials conducted genetic experiments on early man and the animals of Earth. Author Zechariah Sitchin proposed that an alien race known as the Annunaki came to our planet to mine gold and created modern mankind as a slave or worker race. There are more questions than there are answers regarding the origins of humankind and the existence of extraterrestrials, but perhaps someday science will be able to corroborate the ancient stories told in the Bible and other ancient documents.

The biblical passage of Mark 4:21-22 quotes Jesus saying, “Everything that is hidden will be made clear. Every secret thing will be made known.”

What are your thoughts on all of this? These are not theories that I necessarily subscribe to however I thought it might make a good subject to explore nonetheless. Let me know your thoughts on ancient aliens. Or alternatively, if you don’t believe aliens are here (or ever have been), feel free to share your thoughts on this as well.

Image Credit: http://ancient-aliens-were-here.blogspot.com/

The Bizarreness Effect and Spotting E.T.

Recently I’ve been researching historical accounts of UFO sightings/alien abductions (this topic never ceases to fascinate me) and exploring possible scientific explanations for their occurrences when I stumbled across a theory known as the bizarreness effect. I thought I would share a little of what I’ve learned of this theory and would love to hear your thoughts on this subject.

The Bizarreness Effect

Early studies on bizarre imagery have produced contradictory results; some researchers have suggested that the bizarre imagery effects memory recall while others, using similar conditions in their labs, have not obtained that effect.  It was not until the 1980’s that McDaniel & Einstein theorized a paradigm in which consistent results were demonstrated.  Researchers showed that bizarre images are best remembered when mixed with common ones.  This phenomenon is known as the bizarreness effect and it refers to the greater recall of stimuli that have bizarre or unusual connotations as compared to those that are common.

This enhancement of bizarre, relative to common, sentence recall is believed to arise from a distinctiveness of the bizarre material, an uncomplicated sentence structure, and free recall of the material.  The following is an example of a bizarre sentence, taken from McDaniel & Einstein in 1986: 

The DOG rode the BICYCLE down the STREET.

One can see that though the sentence is reasonably simple in structure it may require more cognitive effort in order to visualize.  In an unmixed list, where bizarre and common stimuli were presented separately, the noun combinations of bizarre stimuli are not distinct enough to elicit a higher response recall then an unmixed list of common material.  However, in a mixed list, in which both common and bizarre are presented simultaneously, the bizarreness effect is shown abidingly.

Though researchers have come to understand what variables induce the bizarreness effect, it not clear as to what mechanisms account for effect in the first place.  The current understanding of the bizarreness effect suggests that it is a combination of theories based on the difference in storage and retrieval of the images.  The storage theory proposes that common stimuli are stored better into memory than bizarre stimuli.  The retrieval theory suggests that when bizarre stimuli are compared to common stimuli it produces a “surprise” response.  This response provides an extra cue for the retrieval of the bizarre stimuli.

An understanding about the mechanics of the bizarreness effect has a multitude of applications.  For the purpose of this topic, an understanding of imagery mnemonics are applied to enhance the recall of eyewitnesses used in UFO sightings or possibly even alien abduction accounts.  For investigators, if they can understand what is it about bizarre images that make them so remarkable, they can manipulate certain variables to improve the overall memory of the eyewitness and reduce or eliminate wrongful accounts.

Reference:

Peter Lipton, . (2007). Alien Abduction: Inference to the Best Explanation and the Management of Testimony Episteme: A Journal of Social Epistemology, 4 (3), 238-251 DOI: 10.1353/epi.0.0013

Clark, S., & Loftus, E. (1996). The Construction of Space Alien Abduction Memories Psychological Inquiry, 7 (2), 140-143 DOI: 10.1207/s15327965pli0702_5

Kelley-Romano, S. (2006). Mythmaking in Alien Abduction Narratives Communication Quarterly, 54 (3), 383-406 DOI: 10.1080/01463370600878545

McDaniel MA, Einstein GO, DeLosh EL, May CP, & Brady P (1995). The bizarreness effect: it’s not surprising, it’s complex. Journal of experimental psychology. Learning, memory, and cognition, 21 (2), 422-435 PMID: 7738508

Macklin, C., & McDaniel, M. (2005). The bizarreness effect: Dissociation between item and source memory Memory, 13 (7), 682-689 DOI: 10.1080/09658210444000304

Worthen, J., & Wood, V. (2001). A Disruptive Effect of Bizarreness on Memory for Relational and Contextual Details of Self-Performed and Other-Performed Acts The American Journal of Psychology, 114 (4) DOI: 10.2307/1423609

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