Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Fork In The Road

Anyone who travels along the "road" of the UFO phenomenon will sooner or later reach a fork, where they they will be faced with two choices.

The first is to follow the path of old information simply represented in a new way. George Adamski becomes Steven Greer, Aztec becomes Roswell, and Donald Keyhoe's conspiracy theories about the USAF become Stan Friedman's "Cosmic Watergate".

This is the easier path to choose, because you know where it will lead. You can follow it on a map. Comfortable and well-marked out, it winds its way to a small village inhabited by fellow travellers, kind of like a hobbit town from Lord of the Rings, with whom you can sit down, share a good meal, and tell some stories to each other. It's familiar, and has the siren call of certainty.  

This path is all about finding a place to settle.

The second path is more difficult. It requires you to take a leap into the unknown, to embrace uncertainty, and seek out new information and new ideas. There is no map, no familiarity, and no promise of a comfortable resting place at the end of the road. But there is the possibility of so much more.

This path is all about a journey.

And therein lies the difference, because only by undertaking that journey can one ever really hope to arrive at the destination of true discovery.

Paul Kimball

1 comment:

Arvin Hill said...

"The second path is more difficult. It requires you to take a leap into the unknown, to embrace uncertainty, and seek out new information and new ideas."

What is your plan for traversing this path? And, once undertaken, what constitutes success or progress?

These aren't rhetorical questions. I'm genuinely curious.

Ufology's freak show obsession with cults, including the all-consuming preoccupation with contemporary cults of personality, i.e. celebrity - whether it's Greer or Kaku or Vallée - in my meaningless opinion, accounts for a large degree of its willful retardation. Should you develop and share any insights derived as a result of direct experience (the latter being considerably more difficult than the former; neither being easy), the UFO Intelligentsia - an oxymoron if ever there was one - will reflexively file them in whatever dilapidated boxes comprise the prevailing paradigm, (or, perhaps, more accurately, non-paradigm). That's their role, and, if it isn't singular, it's damn close: rendering judgment on other people's experiences and interpretations. These are the folks who burned Bruno at the stake.

If achieving some degree of personal understanding is your primary objective, expect wonder, awe, experiences that don't translate well (or at all), and a fresh appreciation of the limitations of language.

If, on the other hand, achieving consensus is your bag, you're in for an extremely rude awakening.

And if your quest is 50/50, that falls under the rubric of "having one's cake and eating it, too." Bon appétit!

In any case - and with all sincerity - good luck in your mission. May your experiences be many and profound.