“Everything starts as somebody's daydream.”
- Ancient, intelligent life?
- Life on Enceladus?
- The missing link for complex life?
- Mercury’s 3.8 billion year-old magnetic heart.
- Thunderbolts and lightning…
- Andromeda’s halo.
- Ancient lily fossil or oopart microchip?
- Meal replicator or magic lamp?
- Moscow, we have a problem.
- Edison’s talking dolls come to life.
- UK manufacturer aims to bankrupt Big Bad Wolf.
- The Star Wars sequel that wasn’t.
- Star Wars: The Binks Awakens.
- This week’s evidence of the looming robot uprising… Ocado ‘bots.
Quote of the Day:
“The Unexpected always comes at the most awkward times.”
Feed, my pretties....feeeeeed!
- Pirate Captain Kidd's treasure found in Madagascar.
- The Hollow Earth - a travel guide featuring Alan Moore and Robin Ince.
- Snorkeler discovers underwater 'skeleton tea party' in Arizona.
- The impressive anthropomorphic geoglyphs of the Colorado desert.
- Searching for clues to mystery of ancient Americans.
- What are the 'blazing' objects, orange spheres and loud explosions above Auckland?
- The insane Texas conspiracy theory that even has Chuck Norris freaked out.
- Sleep texting is on the rise. I'm lacking sleep so badly I feel like I'm sleep Grailing right now.
- Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists
- There is growing evidence that our universe is a giant hologram.
- The last known surviving member of the German engineering team that helped send American astronauts to the Moon has passed away.
- The mysterious disappearances of Vatican City.
- The 'Roswell slide' fiasco.
- Researchers find the oldest known human blood in 5300-year-old 'Otzi the Iceman'.
Quote of the Day:
Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.
George Bernard Shaw
Alien? What Alien?
- Consciousness does not compute (and never will), says Korean scientist.
- There is growing evidence that our universe is a giant hologram.
- Mexico's bizarre zone of silence.
- An interview with techno-occultural nomad Erik Davis.
- Norway builds monument to commemorate 'witch' hunt victims.
- Celtic chieftains graveyard discovered in France.
- Biologists discover the key mechanism that triggers human ageing.
- Bat-winged dinosaur from extinct line of fliers?
- Ancient magic: the illusions created in temples by amazing inventions.
- The Wild Man of the Pyrenees.
- Quasicrystals: nature's impossible matter
- Robert Crumb describes how he dropped LSD in the 60s & instantly discovered his artistic style.
- How to win any argument: pseudo-scientific neuro-gibberish.
Quote of the Day:
I don't use drugs, my dreams are frightening enough.
M. C. Escher
Remember that time it was revealed that Francis Crick, co-discoverer of the structure of the DNA molecule, used LSD and couldn't have made his discovery without it? The anecdote is often mentioned by those extolling the virtues of psychedelics as a way of 'opening the mind' to new ideas. Which would be great, except - according to Andy Roberts, well-known author on psychedelic topics - "the fact is that the story simply isn’t true. It’s an urban legend. The product of churnalism".
Prior to Crick’s death in 2004 there had been no mention anywhere of him using LSD as part of the process of discovering the double helix. Until, just ten days after his death, that literary bastion of truth and moral fortitude the Daily Mail, published an article on 8 August 2004, headed ‘Crick was high on LSD when he discovered the secret of life!’
Written by journalist Alun Rees, using information based on an interview conducted with a friend of the chemist Richard Kemp (one of the two chemists who manufactured LSD for the 1970s British LSD manufacturing and distribution conspiracy known as Operation Julie), the article is a mishmash of wishful thinking and idle speculation. It implies that Crick used LSD as part of his quest to discover the double helix structure of DNA and, furthermore, that Crick was involved in the genesis of Operation Julie.
If this story held even the slightest grain of truth, one would have thought the story would have been at least rumoured while Crick was still alive. But it wasn’t. Rees had obtained the post-mortem journalistic ‘scoop’ from one Garrod Harker, allegedly a friend of Richard Kemp.
...Presumably Daily Mail readers were expected to believe that the story couldn’t be published before Crick’s death because of his threat of legal action, and that threat is used in the article to strongly imply the story was genuine. It’s a great journalistic technique; allege that a ‘celebrity’ has told you a secret but that this secret is so special that if you reveal it during their lifetime, they will take punitive legal action. It then makes sense to reveal the bombshell after their death, and use the alleged threat of legal action to explain why you kept quiet about it until now. It’s a wonderful piece of circular logic and almost guarantees your scoop will be published because, whether true or not, no legal action can be taken against journalist or newspaper because the subject is dead.
Whatever the case, once printed after Crick’s death, the story immediately leapt from the printed page onto the internet where it has spread and grown uncritically, becoming a kind of fact-currency for those wishing to justify their ‘scientific’ use of LSD.
(We here at the Grail are mentioned specifically, due to an interview we did with Graham Hancock in which he mentioned this anecdote).
Roberts points out that it is certainly a fact that Crick experimented with LSD later in his life. However, the chances of him using it as a tool to make his great discovery are slim, given the timeline of LSD first appearing in Britain.
Does it really matter either way? Andy Roberts thinks it does. "The present psychedelic renaissance is afoot and going well", he notes. "LSD tests with humans are now taking place again, and scientists are beginning to re-discover the enormous potential psychedelics have for creating and sustaining real change in individuals and thus societies. But the psychedelic renaissance has its critics and its enemies too, and if claims such as those made about Crick can be easily shot down in flames, what does that say about the credulity levels of those within the psychedelic community who would believe and promote them?"
Full story: Francis Crick, DNA & LSD
Last month I announced the coming release of The John Michell Reader, Inner Traditions' collection of essays by the late English counterculture icon. Well, the book is now available through all the major bookstores [Amazon US & UK] and it would definitely make a fine addition to any Fortean's library. "Radical traditionalist" is a spot-on way to describe Michell, who used his witty prose on his column at The Oldie --a humorous monthly magazine aimed for senior readership-- both to complaint about the loss of the traditional lifestyle in British rural areas, condemn modern Agriculture, rant about Darwinism, support the Monarchy system, as well as extolling the use of psychedelics to promote thought-provoking conversations at suitable parties. You can't get more "radical center" than that!
At the same time, Michell also directed his attention to a plethora of Fortean topics, including Sacred Geometry, Stonehenge, the Grail lore, Fairy legends and UFOs. It is on this last subject that I find Michell's ideas resonating heavily with my own, which is why with Inner Traditions' permission, I'm posting one of his essays concerning the most controversial aspect of the UFO phenomenon: Alien abductions.
UFO Abductions and the End of Innocence
The first UFO contactee I met was a young lad from a poor Protestant family in Northern
Ireland, named Ivor Brown. One evening he was walking along a dark country road toward a dance hall when he saw in front of him an ovalshaped object. Some creatures came out of it and took him inside, where he was seduced or whatever you call it by two strange but attractive females. Somehow Ivor got in touch with Desmond Leslie, the author of the very first UFO book, who took me to meet him.
We were inexperienced at that time, so were rather disconcerted by Ivor Brown. Our main concern was whether or not he was lying, and our ideas on how to tell a liar from an honest man were unimaginatively conventional. We had hoped to find the type of reliable witness who appeals to lawyers, firmeyed and rationalminded. That was not Ivor Brown. He was nervous, impressionable, uneducated, and prone to symptoms that are familiar to psychiatrists. Ever since his experience he had maintained psychic contact with his abductors and knew when they were near his house. His sensitivity spread to the rest of the family. Their minds and habits were changed and they left their home to go on psychically guided travels. The last I saw of Ivor was when he passed through London with old Mr. Brown and a younger brother, on their way to visit the grave of Matthew Hopkins, the fanatical witchfinder of seventeenthcentury Suffolk.
There is now a vast literature on the subject of “UFO abductions”— the modern folklore term for the kind of experience described by Ivor Brown. A large and growing number of similar encounters are reported all over the world, particularly in America. Opinions are divided about their meaning. Some say that they are to do with extra-terrestrial beings, while others believe they have a psychological origin. My own persuasion is that the sensible approach to the phenomenon of UFO abductees is by comparing it with past records—the records of folklore.
In any regional account of British folklore one can find stories about people who have been abducted by unworldly creatures, conventionally identified as fairies. The details in such cases are infinitely varied, but one detail is always the same. In every account of an abduction, whether by fairies, demons, or UFOcreatures, the abductee is mentally changed and acquires a new, spiritual perception. The results are not always of obvious benefit—abductees are likely to become lonely, melancholy, introspective. Some are persuaded that they have gone mad and there are always a few who think that God or the Venusians have chosen them to reform mankind.
In certain cases, however, a person who has undergone the abduction experience is awakened to life and gains the level of understanding, which, in ancient and tribal societies, was induced by a ritual initiation.
I now know that Ivor Brown was telling the truth, that he had a genuine, traumatic experience and that he naturally described it in modern, spaceage imagery rather than, as he would have done a generation or so earlier, in terms of demons and fairies. The actual cause of that experience is a mystery, which, I feel sure, will never finally be explained. Yet is has to be accepted as a real, effective phenomenon. To any sympathetic reader who has the slightest idea what I am driving at, I offer for contemplation the following suggested connections: violation of innocence by “UFO abductors”; by rumoured covens of “cult ritualists”; by tribal elders in the course of their initiation of adolescents. These are terrible things to undergo, but the victim may find certain compensations, such as maturity and a finer sensibility.
* * * * * * * * * * *
The John Michell Reader by John Michell, introduction by Joscelyn Godwin © 2015 Inner Traditions.
Printed with permission from the publisher Inner Traditions International. www.InnerTraditions.com
If you're one of those people emailing me with your one-true-theory solving paranormal mysteries, please consult this image before hitting send...
- NASA still cannot explain the eerie hisses and whistles recorded by special microphones 22 miles above the earth's surface
- Space expert baffled as mystery object filmed passing the International Space Station.
- Related? They're thinking of mounting a laser cannon on the International Space Station.
- 50-year-old UFO riddle solved - and it's even more sinister than aliens.
- Does the release of pollen cause rain to fall?
- Italian police reveal what Jesus* looked like as a boy. (* Or Leonardo da Vinci. Or Jacques de Molay. Or at least whomever created the Turin Shroud)
- Roots of near-death experiences explored.
- Is Ouija's dark side just another witch hunt?
- Old hand found in Florida attic with coins and a treasure map. The game is afoot!
- How Silicon Valley's billionaires are trying to defy death.
- Siberia's resurgent shamanism.
- Could you cut out your own appendix?
Quote of the Day:
An oppressive feeling of foreboding hangs over me… This is it… I have to think through the only possible way out - to operate on myself… It's almost impossible… but I can't just fold my arms and give up.
The above clip is part of the promotional campaign for both Jaime Maussan's Be Witness live presentation --which will be featured on May 5th at the National Auditorium in Mexico city-- as well as Adam Dew's Kodachrome documentary. It shows (alleged) random reactions of passersby in Chicago, after they are shown what has purportedly been claimed to be 2 black-and-white slides of a humanoid being inside some sort of glass showcase --If you want to see a low-res image of one of those slides, click here.
If there's one thing that's clearly shown in the video, is how the images seem to perfectly conform with our pop culture assumptions of what an alien being is supposed to look --short stature, slim body and large cranium. What it's not shown, though, is whether these images are as real as the Santilli 'alien autopsy' video of the 1990's, which was equally hyped as the smoking gun that would finally unravel the 'Cosmic Watergate' behind the truth of UFOs and ET visitation.
To say these images are controversial is the understatement of the century. A lot of assumptions have been made with regards to the slides by the people behind tomorrow's presentation. There's the assumption that the slides were taken by Hilda Ray, who was a lawyer, a pilot, the wife of geologist Bernerd Ray; there's the assumption that the couple's illustrious careers and connections with the top elite of American society in the 40's and 50's, would have somehow made them privy to very sensitive material --like the retrieval operations of crashed saucers conducted by the Military.
And of course, there's the majestic assumption --see what I did there?-- that the body (or bodies) shown on the slides are of an extraterrestrial biological entity, AND that these entities were involved in the (in)famous Roswell event of July 1947. That's enough 'ifs' to make your head spin faster than a Reticulan spaceship, which is why some of the most prominent researchers involved in the history of the Roswell affair --namely Stanton Friedman and Kevin Randle-- declined to actively participate in what Maussan and Dew call "the biggest UFO event of all time."
"Is this for real?", one person asks after being shown the slides. That's what Don Schmitt, Tom Carey, Adam Dew and Jaime Maussan keep telling us, and they promise to show us all the evidence to back that claim tomorrow onstage and via live streaming. I'll be there to see whether they deliver the goods... or crash and burn trying.
- Out of body experience (OBE) traced in the brain.
- Science claims the out-of-body experience mystery is solved again - but is it really?
- A sceptic speaks about the 'Enfield Poltergeist', subject of a new TV drama in the U.K.
- Drama, controversy and confusion: The legacy of the Enfield Poltergeist.
- Scientists can make you feel ghosts. Or is that make ghosts feel you?
- 'Disneyland Ghost' debunked.
- Were the Nazca Lines part of an ancient pilgrimage route?
- Will archaeologists find non-Chinese Terracotta Warriors?
- Archaeologists battle Chinese mining interests in fight to save an ancient Buddhist paradise.
- Medieval 'witch burial' girl likely just had scurvy, new study finds.
- This museum is, quite literally, full of historical crap.
- NASA tests 'warp drive' that could carry passengers to the Moon in just four hours.
- Hypernova: one direct hit and life on Earth will be obliterated.
- Do these mysterious lights mark the beginning of an alien invasion?
Thanks Tom Head.
Quote of the Day:
I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones.
A summary of all the stories and news briefs posted on The Daily Grail over the past week. Feel free to share anything interesting!
- Dark Star: H.R. Giger's World
- Liquid Mercury Found At Teotihuacan
- News Briefs 27-04-2015 (Monday)
- Remember that Time the Russians Found Scorpions on Venus?
- News Briefs 28-04-2015 (Tuesday)
- Disneyland Ghost Debunked by Captain Disillusion
- News Briefs 29-04-2015 (Wednesday)
- News Briefs 30-04-2015 (Thursday)
- Science Claims OBE's Solved, Yet Again! But Is It Really?
- News Briefs 01-05-2015 (Friday)
Have a good weekend!
"All things lie dark in possibility."
- The holographic universe.
- Space laser cannons… It's about time.
- The polar ice of Pluto?
- The spacecraft who fell to earth.
- The first casualties of climate change.
- 7 NDE experiences.
- Occam’s invisibility.
- The petrified remains of Lake Natron.
- Here to stay is the new bird.
- Have we reached Warp Factor 5?
- New light shed upon continental migration to South America.
- New exoplanet challenges old beliefs.
- Do altered states follow road maps?
- Studying 1000 years of CO2.
- Airspace reserves seeks to save avians.
- Just a monkey trying to crack a nut.
- The new trailer... for every film.
- This week’s proof of the pending robo-pocalypse… Bake ‘bot.
Quote of the Day:
“Genius is play, and man's capacity for achieving genius is infinite, and many may achieve genius only through play.”