My memory of the dream-that-was-not-a-dream differed a bit from the recollection that came forth under hypnosis. In fact, as I listened to the tape while transcribing it, the experience came back to me in full detail. What emerged during that session is what really happened. Conscious memory has a nasty habit of selecting, veiling, essentially confusing strange events. Trust what you recall when you're most relaxed, and you can't go wrong.
Exactly what lay behind that grid I was speeding toward? I cannot say. Yet. It seems as though I did not want to see it, or chose not to recall it. Maybe it was nothing. But someday, I hope to find out.
In my conscious memory of the experience, I did not recall seeing the "little person" in my bedroom doorway. The recollection of that Being under hypnosis was extremely difficult, yet extremely vivid as well. I could absolutely see the creature, in three-dimensional you-are-there-while-this-is-happening reality, as if reliving the occurrence right there in Aileen's office. Much of the rest of the remembering took place in a two-dimensional I've-seen-this-before recollection, like watching TV or something.
And it turns out the guy at the control panel had six fingers. Six very long fingers. How do I know that? Well, that guy at the control panel was my pal Th'ar. I was formally reintroduced to him a week or so later, during what I call a "show-and-tell" experience.
Once again, late at night, I was awakened. Only this time it was more of a treat; instead of being manipulated, I was shown something.
There, in my bedroom doorway, appeared a cone of light approximately two to three feet high. Inside the cone stood what I can only describe as a miniature holographic representation of the creature who had been at the control panel during my previous encounter. The height of his image was about one foot. It was three-dimensional, and rotated inside the cone so I could see it in its entirety.
It was certainly not a handsome critter, not by our standards. But then, we probably don't look too wonderful to them, either. Standing in reality about six-and-a-half to seven feet tall, the Being's overall appearance can best be described as insect-like. Its outstanding facial features were two huge, elongate dark eyes, and a protruding mandible-style jaw. Its skin seemed leathery and crisscrossed, as though sectioned. And, yes, the six long fingers-- two where our thumb would be. I later attempted to draw what the creature looked like to me. It is my own thinking, and I stress this is only a personal theory, that they may be the tall, long-fingered beings who have appeared to so many contactees, only hooded or shrouded in darkness. Now you can probably understand why a hood would be a proper fashion accessory for one of these guys. Why they would choose to reveal the "whole picture" to me, I have no idea.
The creature's name would be virtually unpronounceable in our tongue. But if you were to attempt it the result would sound something like Ngshthxgashthar. I call him Th'ar, for short.
The religious philosophy of Th'ar's home world is decidedly polytheistic, having many of what we would call "gods." I gather it to be somewhat akin to our ancient Hinduism. This apparently does not sit well with the rest of the Federation, most of which consists of monotheistic cultures. By "Federation" is meant the community of ascended worlds. By "ascended" is meant those cultures who have evolved beyond hatred and warfare and accepted harmony and peace as the only means of coexistence. And have evolved technologically (if that's the proper word; spiritually might be better) to the point where they can traverse time and space virtually at will. By "dazed and confused" is meant my own state of mind, which is not sure it can accept or deal with any of this on its current level. But I must press on.
Th'ar's world is just recently ascended, having been allowed into the Federation only in the last one of two thousand years. You see, they used to be a very warlike species, not unlike our own. Originally a winged race graced their skies but they were eventually slain to extinction by their earthbound brethren. The guilt and yearning that this genocide gradually engendered resulted in a combination warrior/spiritual mentality. A dualism much like the one that exists in our own psyche. Which is why, I believe, this race has been chosen as our contact. As an aside, I think it's most curious that the current heroes of our younger generation are the cartoon characters "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles." The resemblance of said characters to Th'ar's race is rather uncanny. Perhaps this is no coincidence? Might this represent some sort of conditioning or preparation toward acceptance of something hitherto considered grossly inhuman, horrible foreign? One wonders.
And, oh yes, I forgot to mention that Th'ar's species carries its vital organs in a hard shell on its back. This externalization of what are, to us, the internal life forces, only helps contribute to the mind/body split so prominent in Th'ar's culture.
So much for what I learned about Th'ar. I also learned a few things about myself. For instance, that my name was Alwyn. That my nickname was, roughly translated, "Wrong Way." That I was good at getting lost, good at getting into jams, good at getting out of them. That, despite my alarming propensity toward ineptitude, I was respected for possessing a quick, bright spirit, a wild sense of humor. Respected for being clever.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. Time to return to the hypnosis session. Time to remember some more....
During the next portion of the hypnosis session, Aileen decided to take me back to an experience that occurred in the fall of 1975 or spring of 1976. At this point in my life, I had recently finished a year of seminary, studying for the Episcopal ministry at Yale Divinity School in New Haven, Connecticut. I'd become somewhat disillusioned with the idea of entering the ministry. My educational emphasis had always been more theoretical than practical (witness the fact that I received my B.A. in Religious Studies), and I had difficulty with the concept of counseling people concerning their real-life problems. I was more at home debating the relative merits of comparative religions, with a view toward getting the various religions to talk to one another rather than constantly laying competing claims to the Almighty Truth. It is still my hope that this might be achieved by fostering a sense of humility within religious consciousness wherein the claim to know The Truth is subordinated to the desire to share and learn from common human experience. But ignorance and pride, the need to know that we're worshipping the right God in the right way, always seem to doom such efforts at dialog from the very start. Soon I became extremely frustrated by the whole enterprise, and my faith in the efficacy of organized religion began to fade quite rapidly. Not to mention my desire to continue on as a student.
And so, during late 1975 and early 1976, still wed to my first wife, I found myself celebrating our nation's bicentennial by taking a break from postgraduate studies and working in my first real job. At the age of 23, I'd begun as a lowly stockboy in a newly opened discount clothing store in New Haven, and was quickly working my way up through the ranks. The work was challenging and rewarding for someone who'd spent his entire previous life dealing in abstraction and philosophy. I began to acquire a sense of self-worth and independence hitherto unknown, which bode ill for my marriage. Said relationship, although filled with joy and love, began simply to dissolve in my own mind, so filled was I with my newfound strength and self-confidence. In short, not to put too fine a point on it, I rapidly evolved into a self-involved jerk and behaved like a Class "A" a__h__ toward my wife. It's a time I look back upon with both wonder and deep regret. And only now am I learning the lessons of the horrible hurt I caused during that first marriage in the aftermath of the dissolution of my second marriage, in which I was the player who felt the stinging pain and agonizing confusion of love lost for no apparent reason.
So apparently one of those religious concepts I studied over the years applies to the "real world." For I've seen the Law of Karma at work, in its hideously poetic way, in my own life. "What goes around comes around," as Mario Andretti once said, and I'm beginning to believe that things have been going and coming around the racetrack of existence for a lot longer than we care to, or are perhaps able to, remember.
Back to New Haven, Connecticut to those many moons ago.
It was early in the evening and I was riding around town with my friend Roger in his old Volkswagen. Just listening to music, as I recall. And it's a good thing Roger was driving, for one moment I was in Roger's VW, and the next moment I was in a very different place far, far away.
Here is my recollection of that event under hypnosis, with Aileen's assistance:
Aileen: let's go back in time to when you were going to school to be a minister, and you were going down the road. Let's find out what happened that day. Be there now in the car. Can you see your friend?
M: (Me): Uh-huh
A: Where are you? Are you on the passenger side?
M: Yeah, with Roger, my friend. He's driving.
A: OK, are you moving at the time?
M: Yeah, we're driving through.... let's see... looks like, uh... it's part of New Haven.
A: OK, let's go down the road now. Very slowly in time. Going down the road. Tell me if anything different happens.
M: (Long pause)... There's some music playing. We're on a fairly busy street.
A: Where's the music coming from?
M: I think Roger's got the radio on.
A: OK, keep going now. (Long pause)... What's the next thing that happens?
M: The next thing I remember is... not being in the car!
A: OK, let's look at this picture now. You weren't in the car, then where were you?
M: I was in a different place. Some kind of spacecraft.
A: OK, let's look at that spacecraft. Describe it to me.
M: Uh, it's... it's saucer-shaped, very definitely. It's got, uh, I'm seeing this from the outside as well! And also from the inside. This is...
A: It's all right.
M: It's got three, like, landing pods or whatever. Uh, there's a window that I'm looking out of.
A: What do you see out the window?
M: Sort of like a desert canyon. I'm in the canyon; the craft is in the canyon.
A: Is it landed in the canyon?
M: Yes! And I think I'm the only one in the craft.
A: Do you know how it got into the canyon. Back up until you see how it got into the canyon.
M: (Long pause)... I'm not supposed to be going there!
A: Where are you supposed to be going?
M: Not that planet. This is the wrong planet. Uh, I was on some kind of mission or something.
A: Back up, back up, till you see, till you remember. It's all right.
M: I was.... all I can remember is I was supposed to be going some place else, and I was diverted here.
A: You were what?
M: Diverted, like...
A: What diverted you?
M: I don't know!
A: Are you responsible for that craft?
M: Yes, I am.
A: Where are you from?
M: (Long pause)... That's a good question! (Laugh)
A: You know where you're from. Just let it come out. Where did you come from?
M: (Very long pause)... It's a beautiful place.
A: Can you see it better?
M: Parts of it, yes.
A: What are you seeing?
M: It's.... a lot like Earth. It's, uh, smaller. Uh, mountains, a lot of mountains. Water. It's cold.
A: Look at it carefully. Anything that gives you a clue where you came from?
M: Something about the color green. There are green, uh, rocks, Smooth.
A: Is everything green?
M: It's pretty green, uh...
A: How many... does it have any suns?
M: Yes, it definitely has a sun. I'm trying to look up into the sky... the sky is a very bright blue. Uh, it's kind of hazy. I'm assuming it has a sun; it's bright!
A: OK, can you see the ship that you're in when you're there?
M: (Pause)... Yes! Yeah, (laugh) it's down, uh, in sort of a plain. There's quite a few of them.
A: Where are they?
M: I guess there's a village there.
A: Look at it. Is it your village?
M: (Pause) I think so.
A: Go back in time till you can see what's there.
M: (Very long pause)... I can... I can see people I know!
A: Who are they?
M: (Choking up a bit) It's good to see them.
A: Who is it? Tell me so I can see, too.
M: (Sobbing slightly)
A: Just enjoy the feeling; enjoy the feeling of home. Isn't it wonderful? This is who you are. What are you seeing? Who do you see?
M: (Sobbing) Um, she's an old friend of mine.
A: Is it someone you love very much?
M: (Sniffling) Yeah
A: Why did you leave?
M: (Heavy sigh) Uh, we do that. We go (sniffling), excuse me, we go on journeys to other places. Uh, to look and observe; come back and share stories about what we've seen.
A: OK, now I want you to go back to when you saw her. Does she have a name?
M: I was trying to think of her name (laugh).
A: You can hear it. See if she calls you a name.
M: (Long pause)... We're not really talking (laugh).
A: Do you know her name?
M: (Long pause)... I can't remember. I just remember embracing, and we...
A: What does she wear? What does she have on?
M: Uh, sort of a, I guess you'd call it a jumpsuit. Sort of a grayish white, with a like a, what do you call that, a tunic? Has very white skin, long dark hair. Big, dark eyes.
A: What do you look like?
M: Uh... Tall! Light hair; pretty much like my hair is, maybe a little bit whiter. Uh... medium to thin build. Uh, we both have long fingers.
A: Is she your mate?
M: She was then. I guess.
A: OK, so how did you get to this place, from there?
M: To Earth?
A: Mm-hmmmm. Go forward in time. You went to the canyon, remember?
A: Where is that canyon?
M: It's (laughing) on a planet that I wasn't scheduled to go to! Uh, it's, uh, I got out of the craft, and walked down the canyon. I remember hearing the... oh, wait a minute, what's that? Oh, there's birds! Big, black birds flying above. *
A: Big ones?
M: Yeah! And they sound like, uh... seagulls, kind of. Sort of a screeching...
A: How big are they?
M: Uh, I guess the wingspan would be about eight feet.
A: Do they have feathers?
M: Yes, I think so.
A: What are the birds doing?
M: They're just sort of hovering, well not hovering, but flying over the canyon, sort of looking down at me.
A: Is it warm there?
M: You know, I can't--oh, I've still got my suit on! I've got a suit that I wear; because I didn't know I was gonna stop here, so I wasn't sure what it was gonna be like. And I feel kind of compelled to keep walking till the end of the canyon.
A: OK, when you walk along can you see the terrain?
M: Uh-huh. It's uh... Underfoot I can feel my boots are crunching on a gravelly-like stuff. And it's kind of a brown/orange.
A: Any trees there>
M: No, it's pretty barren. I don't see any signs of vegetation or anything.
A: It's just rocky?
A; OK, keep going.
M: And, let's see, the walls of the canyon are probably about, uhhh, forty to fifty feet on either side, high. And I'm coming toward the mouth of the canyon and there's ah, looks like a, an ocean.
A: Does it just kind open up to that?
M: Yeah, to a beach.
A: Like a creek would come out of a little canyon?
M: Uh-huh, yeah. And the beach is about twenty-five, thirty yards from the mouth of the canyon to the ocean. Uh, it's kind of a finer grain of the gravelly stuff. A little bit whiter, little bit brighter. Oh, and there's a - the sky is dark, but there are rings above.
A: Dark? How do you mean dark?
M: Like night. It's night time, but there must be illumination from something, because it's bright -- it must be a moon or something. Because it's bright where I am; you know, not daylight-bright, but enough to cast a shadow. Uh, the rings are just amazing, uh...
A: They have color to them?
M: Yeah, they're sorta like the planet. It's sort of a brownish, with an orange ring, and sort of a grey ring. And you can, even through my helmet I can hear the rings! You can hear them sort of rumble, like a deep rumbling.
A: How high up are they?
M: Uh... several miles. It's hard to gauge.
A: So is it kind of like rocks rolling in a river? The sound?
M: Uhhh, more like if somebody were to grind rocks together, er, I can't, trying to think of something to..
A: That's, OK. So then what happens?
M: I look down from the rings and there are people there!
A: What do they look like?
M: They look a lot like the people from the other planet. Like -- but I don't recognize them!
A: You mean as somebody you knew?
M: No. Yeah. No.
A: Do they have spacesuits on?
M: No, they... I can't tell what they're wearing. They seem to be, uh... I don't know what they're wearing! (Laugh) I can't tell...
A: How many are there?
M: I would say about a dozen.
A: Do they see you?
M: Oh yeah! They're coming towards me.
A: Where are they coming from?
M: Uh, seem like they must have come from either side of the canyon, because they were just sort of there when I looked down from the rings. And they're very happy; they're glad to see me, it looks like.
A: Do they seem to recognize you, or just happy to see you, like they haven't seen anybody in a long time?
M: No, I think they recognize me.
A: Do they say something to you?
M: Uh, not in speech, but in thoughts.
A: So what do they say?
M: Uh, like, "Welcome. Good to see you."
A: Is it English?
M: No, it's uh, but I can understand it. It's like thoughts. Like they can give me their thoughts. And, now I understand that they brought me here.
A: Oh! What'd they do that for?
M: I don't know (laugh). Uhh, they're taking me by the hand now and they're taking off my suit! One's got my helmet.
A: Can you see them more clearly now?
M: Yeah, they're the same heigth as I am so they must be fairly tall. The look like...
A: Do they call you a name?
M: (Long pause) Huhhh... I don't remember.
A: OK, go ahead. When they took your suit off, what do you have under it?
M: Uh, just like uh, shorts. That's pretty much it.
A: Is it cold?
M: No, it's not. It's a little bit warm, probably about 70 degrees, around there.
A: Do you have shoes on?
M: No, I'm barefoot now.
A: OK, when you walk does it hurt your feet?
M: It's kind of crunchy, kind of tingly.
A: OK, and then what happens?
M: Uh, they're leading me toward the ocean. At least I guess you'd call it an ocean. It comes in like in waves, onto the beach. But it's not really water. It's more solid than that, like, not oily, but...
A: Is it like Jello? I keep seeing Jello.
M: Yeah (laugh), it's a little bit like that, but grainy, like sandy, yeah. Yeah, that's a good way to put it.
A: And what color is it? Orange Jello (laugh)?
M: Yeah (laugh), pretty much! Yeah, it pretty much is. Not the most colorful place I've ever been to (laugh). But it's sort of a dark...
A: Do they get in there with you?
M: Yeah, they do! Uh, they sort of lead me in, and one has a hold of each of my hands, and they're reassuring me. As I really don't know why this is happening (laugh).
A: What do they say?
M: Uh, just, "Don't be afraid."
A: How do they say that?
M: Uh, just by thoughts, and...
A: Do they tell you why they're doing this?
M: No. They don't. I feel a little bit apprehensive, but not scared, because they seem like they're friendly. Like I should know them almost. Uh, and they lead me in about waist deep.
A: What's it feel like?
M: I was just gonna say it feels kinda funny. It's like, uh I dunno, being in a bowl of oatmeal or something. I dunno. And, it's very warm.
A: It's warm? Warmer than the air?
M: Yeah, I would say so. It's almost a magma or lava-like substance, you know? And they, uh, very gently take me by the back of my head and...uhhhh, dunk me under the water.
A: Or whatever.
A: Well what does it feel like on your face?
M: Uh, about the same. It reminds me of something, but I can't think of what it is. Uh, it's like if you--hoo boy, I can't think of what it is.
A: I'm gonna give you a suggestion. When you come out of hypnosis you will remember. Maybe not today, but it will come back to you.
M: OK (pause)... And then they bring me back up.
A: Now when you come out of there does this cling to you?
M: yeah, it sort of does, yeah.
A: How does it feel then?
M: Uh, like cold cream of wheat, sort of (laugh). I must be getting hungry, I have all these food images. (laugh) Uh, and they're brushing it away from my face and stuff. And one of em's got his or her arm around me.
A: Do they give an impression as to why they did this now?
M: No. They don't.
A: OK, what happens next then?
M: Uh, they're leading me out. And there's sort of a flat rock over to the left. They lead me toward that And... sit me down there, and bring my suit over to me, and touch me, and say the equivalent of, "thank you," I guess it would be. And, you know, reassure me again, and they're walking away. Sort of like, I get the impression they're leaving me to my own thoughts. Didn't really tell me why they did it.
A: Did they ever come back?
M: Did they come back? No, they didn't.
A: So what did you do?
M: Sat there for a while. Kind of in a daze. And then, put my suit on and headed back to the ship. One thing I should mention is the gravity seemed to be rather high there, like you couldn't move very quickly. So everything went sort of in slow motion.
A: When you go in the ship, what do you see?
M: Uh (pause)... I'm seated in a very comfortable chair. Let's see -- there are controls on the arms of the chair.
A: Do you like this ship?
M: Yes! It's a good ship.
A: Do you see any insignias, any markings, anything like that in there?
M: I keep thinking of, like a, an upside-down V. But with... OK, if you took a V and put it upside-down, and cut off about half of the right leg, so it would be like an upside-down check mark. I keep thinking that comes to me.
A: So then do you take off?
A: Where do you go?
M: Uh, I'm thinking that I'm just gonna head home. Because I'm a little bit shaken by what I've been through. And, I was supposed to go to this other place, but I don't now, I think I'll just head back.
A: I think that this should be enough for today. OK if we do this again sometime?
M: Yes! I'd like to.
A: And we'll go and we'll find out how you got to earth from there.
A: We have a lot more things to pursue, too.
* When he saw the huge blackbirds it reminds me of Adam the Dream Healer. He was instructed to go to one of the little islands in the Straights of Juan de Fuca. His family went with him, even his grandmother. He went into the woods and saw a HUGE blackbird about 12 feet tall. It instructed him in all sorts of things. His family took many pictures of it, even his grandmother. You can see a picture of it in his new book, Adam the Dream Healer. I wondered if it was a shape shifter. Adam is a Native American and perhaps they were able to reach him more easily that way.