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Tuesday, 10 November 2015

The Complete Review: Alien Dawn by Colin wilson 
I have to say that I was really looking forward to Colin Wilson's"investigation into the Contact experience" -Alien Dawn as you probably read here:
 When I read what he had concluded I could not wait to see what he had discovered in the way of facts to reach that conclusion.  I count Wilson's book, Poltergeist, as a classic of research so I opened up the book.
I have this habit of using Post-It notes in books and magazines with scribbles denoting points of interest. There are a few in this book.  However there are many where I have corrected the sources and information Wilson bases his findings on.
For one thing, waxing lyrical over John Keel and his adventures and ultra terrestrials or whatever is bad. B A D because, as I discovered through research, Keel was quoting sources that were very dubious and spinning a yarn -this was his "business" after all.  Like the "fact" that an officer in the British Army during World War 2 headed a flying saucer project -which Air Vice Marshal Sir Victor Goddard had to point out more than a few times was a fantasy.  Never happened. The UK at that time expercted a German invasion at any time and "we did not expect to survive long" -as Sir Victor and others pointed out.  To suggest that at that time an Army officer was acting outside of all Military Intelligence departments and taking money to look at "lights" was ridiculous.
I do not for one minute accept anything Keel wrote unless I can check original sources.
Jacques Vallee and his theories which he seemed to hot then cold then hot on again. Vallee quotes sources such as Italian Ufologist Fenoglio -a KNOWN hoaxer- and never corrects the record and still uses those cases. One of the first things the AOP Bureau did was look at Ortotheny, the "Mars Cycle" and cases cited by Vallee -the first two took two days to dismiss (a day in the case of "ley lines") and then Vallees case data base proved far from accurate. In fact, I, personally, began to doubt Vallee had done any original research on reported cases -as with Alencon, 1790.
But there is worse.  Wilson uses information from Harold T. Wilkins whom my late colleague Franklyn A. Davin-Wilson noted: "Has just as many un-named sources and dubious facts as Frank Edwards".  Wilkins was known to make up really good sounding sources that turned out to not exist or have the information in he had 'quoted' and he was a known plagiarist. I have tracked down a number of sources he referred to and found details not to match or to have been "re-edited" by Wilkins.
Wilson cites flying saucer Contactee hoaxer, criminal and terrorist Aladino Felix who wrote as Dino Kraspendon!
Wilson refers to the Byland Abbey UFO sighting in the Middle Ages -PROVEN and ADMITTED to be a hoax in the 1950s and 1960s as an example of UFOs in the past -and the Alencon episode!
Add to this mix dubious Crop Circles, ghosts and poltergeists, Uri Geller and Puharich, the Fatima Miracle, "synchronicities", time slips and a heap of other stuff and the conclusion Wilson reached is (I'm trying not to use a very rude word) bovine excrement.
Sure, Wilson says he purchased lots of UFO books but had never really been into the subject and it shows.
This is what happens when you get someone who is just jumping into a subject but has only books as reference and has never investigated cases of abduction or UFO sightings but relies on second hand information from sources as noted.  There are examples in the book of abductees (yes, he does mention them now and then) who are describing -clearly- altered state trances but Wilson seems to accept this as part of the manipulating force behind UFOs and other things that seem strange.
There are glimpses of Wilson citing cases and ideas that he does not follow through on and it makes you wonder what he was thinking?  Although there are some interesting points I think that, by writing this book and using the sources he did, Wilson negates his own conclusion.  As Franklyn used to say "With computers the person puts in wrong data the computer spits out wrong data" and that's what we have here.
Want to see how many correction notes I put in the book until I gave up (but I will be adding more later!)?
Now back to the last couple chapters and I will return to this book! 

And here I am!

This book is around 1" thick (2.5cms).  With all the new notes I have added it is now 3" (7.5cms) thick. I have to say I am more than a little disappointed. Wilson certainly has a big "man-crush" on keel and Vallee.

Robin Collyns book Did Spacemen Colonise The Earth is cited in one chapter but as my late colleague Franklyn Davin-Wilson wrote about it: "He (Collyns) spent 12 years researching this book -yet it still contains glaring errors" and Franklyn annotated the book with many corrections. 

Wilson also seems to greatly admire a man who challenges Einstein and many others in science, Donald Hotson. In fact, Wilson gives up a great deal of space to Hotson's theories which had me asking out loud "What the **** has this to do with UFOs??"  But who is this great thinker who, like Wilson it seems, thinks Einstein was wrong? Bill Zebuhr in  Issue 86, July/August 2009, of Infinite Energy Magazine   writes:

" Don has studied a lot of physics but does not have a formal degree in it. In an undergraduate course he was told to forget a career in physics..."

Zebuhr praises Hotson but others tend not to.  But I'm not arguing physics just stating Wilson goes off on a tangent over unproven theories.

Then: "It is often stated that the 1961 abduction of Barney and Betty Hill is the first abduction case on record..."  Wilson claims he read about 200 UFO books but he clearly did not take much in if Vallee or Keel or Watkins were not involved.  Incidentally, I've read far, far more that 500 UFO books not to mention thousands of UFO publications, edited them and even carried out a few hundred UFO sighting/entity case investigations and been researching for well over 45 years. I DO take it all in.  The Hill case is described as "the first fully documented UFO abduction case" not the very first (see my review of Captured! here: )
On p. 227 Wilson cites the case of teenager Andrea (one of Hopkins' subjects) who was a "virgin, and her hymen was still unbroken" and Andrea got pregnant after "dreaming of having sex with a bald man with 'funny eyes'" -so  another alien experiment, right? Foetus no doubt went missing? No. Andrea had an abortion....something off here?

Wilson does refer to the possibility of the hypnotist somehow telepathically conveying ideas to a hypnotised subject (as suggested by Ann Druffel in How To Defend Yourself Against Alien Abduction).  I will not knock that theory.  It is odd how Hopkins' subjects had stories conforming to his theories, Jacobs ditto and Mack -ditto.  Wilson also notes how easily hypnotised subjects were used in crimes -one woman to forget her rape and being sold on to other men (p. 228).

Now, then comes the Linda Cortile case (as outlined in Hopkins' book Witnessed) -and abduction from a tower block witnessed  by diplomats and security and head of the United Nations at the time, Javier Pérez de Cuéllar.  Wilson notes how Hopkins knew one of the security men, Richard, was a top security man because he had a photo of the man standing next to President Regan -but writes that Hopkins never met Richard; all contact was via letter!  In fact, I had supported Hopkins since his first published book but Witnessed just read like a man being "fed a line" -conned.  And De Cuellar never witnessed anything -and I believe everyone accepts that.  Why the hoax was perpetrated who knows but Hopkins realising Linda "was one of them (alien)" was the nail in his coffin.  Read the book and you will see why.

But Wilson seems to accept all of is we narrow, closed-minded folk who do not understand.
Wilson points to the "missing foetus" and Ann Druffel, again, solved this back in the early 1990s but Wilson does not know this.

I did choke when I read that an account came from the "Highly respected Timothy Good"  but then, Wilson quotes cases of what seem to be "altered states" -abductees leaving their bodies from cars and even in a crowded hall.  There are obvious fantasists and even hallucinatory experiences but all point toward Wilson's theory.  "Psychic Warrior" David Morehouse is quoted stating that he had used his powers to learn that Korean Flight 007, shot down by the Soviet Union in 1983, was on a spying mission. Bit of a fib based on facts that Wilson could have checked to see how good a source he was.  No mention of the USAF RC-135 spy plane that the Soviets took KAL 007 to be.

And on p. 294 the great Ufologist Wilson tells us how, by the 1960s, the idea of extra-terrestrial visitors was a dead theory.  Feck me I missed that one!  Utter, pardon the language, bull-shit.

But then we have "past life experiences", Out Of Body Experiences, cases of the paranormal and psychic abilities basically telling us that we do not know the power of our own minds.

Oh, and though I do think that Richard Dawkins is full of himself but stating "trying to answer the ultimate question by pretending it is not there"??? And Stephen Hawking ("the cosmologist" -oooh, bitchy) comes in for a blasting (have I mentioned that Wilson does not rate Einstein highly either?) because he believes science will eventually find the answer to almost everything "this entails the corollary that God is an unnnecessary hypothesis".  And "Hawking is burying his head in the sand". 

Then he meanders into Planck, Bohrs, Heisenberg and Quanta for pages while I sat wondering what was going on.  He mentions the 1974 Avely (Essex) Abduction but then goes on to say that up until 1977 "there were no other abductee reports in Britain" and I again swore.  What was I cataloguing and investigating since 1974 then?  By this time I was mentally shouting "You utter ill-informed ass!"

"Indian Miracle Man" Sai Baba stated that UFOs come from the heart and the heart is God and this is where UFOs come from.  Well...mystery solved....or is it?  Because Sai Baba was not the best person to add theory to your data just read Miracle Man Or petty magician? Will the real Sai Baba please standup:

But it goes on.  Abductee Linda Porter stating that all abductees are part aliuen if not actually aliens -putting a target on those claiming to be abductees -the aliens "fifth column" on Earth.  David M. Jacobs also claims this but seems to have no thought of consequences for people who have claimed to be abductees.

Wilson seems to reiterate on p.338 in a massive outlet of ego, that He never thought Einstein got it wrong.  T. C. Lethbridge in 1931, during a heavy rainstorm saw a "typical ball of light"...yes, we would call it "ball lightning", dear.

It seems that the chief mistake of we mere mortals is that we assume all UFOs are solid craft.  But Wilson realises the truth. Well, with the AOP Bureau in 1982 we realised that UFO catalogues and sighting reports consisted of those of alleged solid constructed craft (if those reports were true), misidentifications, meteorites, various meteorological phenomena and unknown natural phenomena -that I witnessed at least three times at close quarters.  A jumble of things making up a very strange and almost impossible to believe 'phenomenon' or, rather, "phenomena".  THAT is why it makes no sense. The AOP came to understand this, or rather I did since it was my job to assess cases for study, in three hours of just looking at the reports.

Vallee obviously did not and took it all at face value.

Wilson notes how abductions have a lot of similarities but not all the dissimilarities.  And that they "make no sense".  You think he'd get the point.  Even when he mentions an H. G. Wells story of rays from space changing Earth children into highly intelligent 'Martians' -and the story teller then realising he himself is "one of them" the penny does not drop. 

 The Midwich Cuckoos (1957) by John Wyndham has been summarised thus

"Ambulances arrive at two traffic accidents blocking the only roads into the (fictional) British village of Midwich, Winshire. Attempting to approach the village, one paramedic becomes unconscious.

Suspecting gas poisoning, the army is notified. They discover that a caged canary becomes unconscious upon entering the affected region, but regains consciousness when removed. Further experiments reveal the region to be a hemisphere with a diameter of 2 miles (3.2 km) around the village. Aerial photography shows an unidentifiable silvery object on the ground in the centre of the created exclusion zone.

After one day the effect vanishes along with the unidentified object, and the villagers wake with no apparent ill effects. Some months later, the villagers realise that every woman of child-bearing age is pregnant, with all indications that the pregnancies were caused by xenogenesis during the period of unconsciousness referred to as the "Dayout".

When the 31 boys and 30 girls are born they appear normal except for their unusual, golden eyes and pale, silvery skin. These children have none of the genetic characteristics of their parents. As they grow up, it becomes increasingly apparent that they are, at least in some respects, not human. They possess telepathic abilities, and can control others' actions. The Children (they are referred to with a capital C) have two distinct group minds: one for the boys and another for the girls. Their physical development is accelerated compared with that of humans; upon reaching the age of nine, they appear to be sixteen-year-olds.

The Children protect themselves as much as possible using a form of mind control. One young man who accidentally hits a Child in the hip while driving a car is made to drive into a wall and kill himself. A bull who chased the Children is forced into a pond to drown. The villagers form a mob and try to burn down the Midwich Grange, where the Children are taught and live, but the Children make the villagers attack each other."

Alien hybrid kids with mind control powers -familiar?  Two films from this Village of The Damned (1960) and then Children of The Damned.  Lots of publicity for the MGM remake of 1981 that never happened but John Carpenter remade Village of The Damed in 1995.  There are lots of sci fi films, TV programmes, comic books and magazine stories and articles on the same theme.  Wilson doesn't mention these.  However about ten years ago I termed "alien hybrid children" with the better name of "Midwich Cuckoos".  Andrija Puharich of Uri Geller fame was looking into such "mentally gifted" children before his death.

Wilson feels that 'aliens' or whatever force is behind the alien fakery, is helping to develop new humans -like the ones Puharich was looking into.  John Mack was right, it a way.

I re-read what Publishers Weekly wrote about this book:

 "In over 80 books, Wilson (From Atlantis to the Sphinx) has reported on a wide variety of alternate realities involving crime, sex and the occult, all based on the underlying premise that our everyday consciousness is meager compared with powers potentially available to us.

This attempt at a synthesis of the alien/UFO phenomenon shows Wilson's encyclopedic strength to be also his weakness. In his zeal for inclusiveness, he reports not only on the history of UFOs from mythology through Kenneth Arnold to Philip Corso (The Day After Roswell), but also writes about Uri Geller, LSD research, crop circles, ley lines, the Loch Ness monster, remote viewing, Jung, hypnotism, poltergeists, Ouspensky, out-of-body experiences, quantum physics and a great deal more.

There is little new here: much of the book is composed of un-foot noted second- and third-hand accounts of UFOs, alien encounters and (perhaps) related phenomena drawn from other sources, resulting in an unfocused catalogue of anecdotes, the larger import of which is rarely assessed.

Periodically Wilson asks, as if talking to himself: "What, then, are we to make of it all?" At times he finds unbelievability a plus: after all, if someone were simply fabricating a story, wouldn't they make it more plausible?

By the time readers reach the chapter titled "Oh no, not again!" the phrase has an unintended inflection. In the end, Wilson seems to regard aliensAwhatever they areAas agents in the transformation of human consciousness, but he provides little solid support for, or elucidation of, such a hypothesis."

I purchased this book because I really rated Wilson from some previous works including Poltergeist, which I consider(ed) a classic.  I just could not believe what I read.  This is a classic example of jumping on the abduction bandwagon and spouting so much nonsense -as stated in the quote above.  This is what you get when someone who has no knowledge of the history or subject matter buys a lot of books and splutters on for 371 pages.  This is NOT "the most comprehensive bird's eye view of the subject ever undertaken" -that is a pure bull shit statement (well, its Virgin Books).

Pilot sightings of UFOs, radar-vizual cases...I could go on but these are not even touched on.  Just "Keel and Vallee were almost right but I've sorted it all out from my study"

A very, very, very, VERY disappointing book and I would never recommend it.

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