Friday, December 30, 2011

On Decapitations

Decapitation is something that vexes me. It has immense occult significance, as does the closely related severed head and the skull, in various traditions, yet it is rarely discussed in the literature. I'm written several mediocre blogs on this topic before, such as this and this, in an attempt to illuminate both myself and my readers. Hopefully this one will fair a little better. I will cover a lot of material I've used in prior blogs in an attempt to bring much of the data I've gathered together in a single place. So, let us begin.

The ritualistic removal of the head is one of the oldest practices in human history. It appears in various cultures the world over as both crucial aspects of their myths as well as an actual practice. In fact, it predates even human beings.

"We have already viewed the earliest unmistakable archaeological evidence of man's religious thought, in the burials and bear sanctuaries of Homo neanderthalensis. We now add, to complete the picture, the observation that a number of the Neanderthal skulls found at Krapina and Ehringsdorf provide evidence also of his ritual cannibalism. They had been opened in a certain interesting way. Furthermore, every one of the unearthed skulls of Neanderthal's Javanese contemporary, Solo Man (Ngangdong Man), had also been opened. And finally, when skulls opened by the modern headhunters of Borneo fro the purpose of lapping up the brains are compared with those of Solo and Neanderthal -the skulls having served, handily, as the bowls for their own contents -they are found to have been opened in precisely the same way.

"Remarkable indeed -we might observe in passing -how far cultural patterns can survive beyond the periods of the races among whom they first appear!

 "What rites were associated with the early headhunt we do not know; but that its spirit was comparable to the head-worship of the bear is likely -particularly in view of the fact that at the five-chambered grotto of Guattari near San Felice Circeo, on the coast of Italy, some eighty miles southeast of Rome, a Neanderthal skull was recently discovered that had been treated much like the skull of a sacrificed bear. The head having been removed, a hole had been tapped in it for the removal of the brain; the remains of sacrificed animals were preserved in receptacles round about the grotto, and the skull itself, placed on the floor of the cave, was surrounded by a circle of stones."
(The Masks of God Primitive Mythology, Joseph Campbell, pg. 373)

a Neanderthal skull used as a ritualistic bowl

Skull cults flourished in the earliest high civilizations based around the equator.
"The first plantings should be sought... in the broad equatorial zone where the vegetable world has supplied not only the food, clothing, and shelter of man since time out of mind, but also his model of the wonder of life -in its cycle of growth and decay, blossom and seed, wherein death and life appear as transformations of a single, superordinated, indestructible force. Today we find throughout this immense area a well-developed style of village life based on a garden economy of yams, coconuts, bananas, taro, etc., as well as a characteristic culture assemblage including rectangular gabled huts, drums made of split logs and a way of communicating by drum beats, a galaxy of distinctive musical instruments, secret societies of a particular kind, tattooing, a type of bow and feathered arrow, such forms of burial and skull cult as have just been described for South or East Africa, bird-, snake-, and crocodile-worship, spirit posts and huts, particular methods of making fire, and a way of fashioning cloth of palm fiber and of bark.
(ibid, pg. 137)
Of these secret societies centered around agriculturally based civilizations, Campbell writes:
"... the ceremonials of these secret lodges are to be distinguished radically from those of the hunting-tribe initiations, their psychological function being different and their history different too. Admission to them is through election and is generally limited: they are not for all. Moreover, they tend to be propagandist, reaching beyond the local tribe, seeking friends and members among alien people... As already noted, a particular stress is given in these secret men's societies to a skull cult that is often associated with the headhunt. Ritual cannibalism and pederasty are commonly practiced, and there is a highly elaborated use made of symbolic drums and masks. Ironically (yet by no means illogically), the most prominent divinities of these lodges are frequently female, even the Supreme Being itself being imagined as a Great Mother; and in the mythology and ritual lore of this goddess a lunar imagery is developed..."
(ibid, pg. 321)

For more on the history of this particular style of skull cult, check herehere, and here. Keep them in mind dear reader for we shall consider them again in this piece a bit later. But I digress for now, so let us return to the ritualistic aspects of the head and the severing of it. Traces of the association of the decapitation and vegetation appear in Greco-Roman myths such as the one concerning Lityerses:
"...Lityerses was a bastard son of Midas, King of Phyygia, and dwelt at Calaenae. He used to reap corn, and had an enormous appetite. When a stranger happened to enter the cornfield or to pass by it, Lityerses gave him plenty to eat and drink, then took him to the corn-field on the banks of the Maender and compelled him to reap along with him. Lastly, it was his custom to wrap the stranger in a sheaf, cut off his head with a sickle, and carry away his body, swatched in the corn stalks. But at last Hercules undertook to reap with him, cut off his head with the sickle, and threw his body into the river. As Hercules is reported to have slain Lityerses in the same way that Lityerses slew others (as Theseus treated Sinis and Sciron), we may infer that Lityerses used to throw the bodies of his victims into the river."
(The Golden Bough, James Frazer, pg. 436)
It is not just at the equator or the Classical world that we find the ritualistic use of decapitation, however. The Americas are littered with traces of this custom. The Aztecs are primarily known for removing the hearts and skins of the victims used in rituals of human sacrifice, but several of the more significant sacrificial rites involved beheading. For instance, the festival of Toxcatl, dedicated to the god Tezcatlipoca, climaxed with a beheading of the sacrificial victim.

"Like the Mexican temples in general, it was built in the form of a pyramid; and as the young man ascended the stairs he broke at every step one of the flutes on which he had played in the days of his glory. On reaching the summit he was seized and held down by the priests on his back upon a block of stone, while one of them cut open his breast, thrust his hand into the the wound, and wrenched out his heart held it up in sacrifice to the sun. The body of the dead god was not, like the bodies of common victims, sent rolling down the steps of the temple, but was carried down to the foot, where the head was cut off and spitted on a pike. Such was the regular end of the man who personated the greatest god of the Mexican pantheon."
(ibid, pg. 609)
Tezcatlipoca, one of the main Aztec gods who decapitations were offered to

One of the more curious uses of the head in ritual occurs in several of the burial mounds of the Adena peoples, one of the most mysterious North American tribes. They were one of the earliest mound builders and by several accounts, a literal race of giants (quite a few skeletons have been found from individuals who would have been over eight feet tall). More on the Adena can be found here. As to their burial practices, consider:
"No one knows where the Adena came from, or what happened to them. It is believed that they were either exterminated by the later Hopewell culture, or were assimilated into the Hopewells through intermarriage and the gradual erosion of their own culture. Their only legacy rests in the proliferation of mounds. In some of these, strange burial patterns were observed, such as the twelve people buried at the Kiefer Mound in Ohio, in a circle with their heads on the inside of the circle and their feet pointing outwards 'like spokes in a wheel.' This same arrangement was reported in the Wheeling Gazette -a body on an altar, head facing 'west of north' in the direction where there was evidence of a fire, the body covered by a foot of ashes. The body as found to be 'remarkably perfect, and was mostly preserved. Around this body were twelve others with their heads centering towards it, and feet projecting. No articles of art were found, except a polished stone tube, about twelve inches in length.' The alignment of the body implies an astronomical orientation consistent with many Hopewell and Adena sites. In this case, it possible that the 'west of north' alignment was toward Ursa Major, but this is pure conjecture since we don't know when the site was constructed or the bodies interred. The fact that there were twelve other bodies with the central, altar-lain body indicates that these twelve were killed, sacrificed, in some sort of ritual. The stone tube might ave been a pipe, or it could have served some function of which we are not aware; such is the state of knowledge of American prehistory... At the Kiefer mound, three of the twelve corpses had been decapitated, with the skulls placed between the thigh bones. This odd placement of the skulls also exists in other Adena sites in Kentucky. Engraved tablets were found buried in these mounds with the artistically arranged bodies, and Adena experts William S. Web and Charles E. Snow believe that this 'constitutes a very import Adena trait.'"
(Sinister Forces: Book One, Peter Levenda, pgs. 52-53)

the actual skull of an Adena

Conversely, the ancient Celts were fixated on removing the head, not for burials, but during battle.
"In the Celtic world, the head was the focus of practices and beliefs which differed in detail, but possessed an overall homogeneity. The most important custom was war like: the Gauls used to cut off the heads of their conquered enemies, tie them to the necks of their horses and bear them home in triumph. These trophies were carefully preserved, in cedar-oil if need be... The decapitated head is a regular motif of Gailic coinage and the Gallic and Gallo-Roman plastic arts. Irish custom was identical with Gallic and insular heroic literature contains countless examples of the warrior carrying off the head of the enemy he has killed in single combat. The head would thus symbolize the enemy's strength and warlike virtues that his conqueror had acquired, and decapitation would also ensure the death of the enemy. According to Celtic notions, death did not occur until the cerebral membranes were destroyed."
(Dictionary of Symbols, Jean Chevalier & Alain Gheerbrant. pgs. 476-477)

Oddly, the severing of the head was associated with the earliest European and American myths concerning the slaying of vampires as well.
"This [decapitation] is also a method known to European and early American cultures as a means of ensuring the corpse does not come back to life, i.e. become a vampire."
(Sinister Forces: Book One, Pete Levenda, pgs. 75-76)
Presumably this is where the tradition of damaging, or removing, the head of a zombie as a means of sending it back to the dead, also derives. Many cultures seem to have shared the belief that the head was the key to ensuring death.

"In various primitive religions, decapitation derived from ritual and belief. Since the head was the home of the spirit, it needed to be preserved or destroyed, according to whether it belonged to a friend or to an enemy."
(Dictionary of Symbols, Jean Chevalier & Alain Gheerbrant, pg. 281)

In other words, the head can be used as a kind of talisman. In such circumstances, one of the powers seemingly associated with the severed head is prophesy.
"The Celts had a tradition of bewitched heads, but more pertinently, there was a severed head kept at the Osirian temple of Abydos that was believed to prophesy. In another associated myth, the head of that other dying-and-rising god, Orpheus, was washed upon Lesbos, where it began to predict the future."
(The Templar Revelations, Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince, pg. 358)

the head of Orpheus

I'm going to shift gears a bit now and focus on the legacy of severed heads in the Grail myths.

"The first of the Grail romances was Chretien de Troyes' unfinished Le Conte del Graal (c. 1190)...

"In Chretien's version of the story there is no mention of the Grail being a cup nor is any connection with the Last Super or with Jesus ever explicitly described. In fact, there is no obvious religious connotation at all, and it has been said that its overall ambiance is, if anything, distinctly pagan. Here, however, the Grail object was a platter or dish -which, as we shall see, is highly significant. In fact, Chretien had drawn on a much older Celtic tale that had as its hero Peredur, whose quest involved encountering a gruesome and apparently highly ritualistic procession in a remote castle. Carried in this were, among other things, a spear that dripped blood and a severed head on a platter. A common feature of the Grail stories is the critical moment when the hero fails to ask an important question, and it is this sin of omission that leads him into grave danger. As Malcom Godwin says: 'Here the question which is not asked concerns the nature of the head. If Peredur had asked whose head, and how it concerned him, he would have known how to lift the enchantments of the Wasteland.' (The land had been cursed and made infertile.)

"Even without an ending, Chretien's story was a runaway success and it gave rise to a huge number of copycat tales -most of which were explictly Christian...

"One of these Christianized versions was Perlesvaus, which was, some say, written by a monk at Glastonbury Abbey in c. 1205, while others believe it was the work on an anonymous Templar. This tale is really about two quest that are interwoven. The knight Gawain searches for the sword that beheaded John the Baptist, and which magically bleeds every day at noon. In one episode the hero encounters a cart containing 150 severed heads of knights: some were sealed in gold, some in silver and some in lead. Then there is a bizarre damsel who carries in one hand the head of a king, sealed in silver, and in the other that of a queen, sealed in lead.

"In Perlesvaus the elite attendants of the Grail wear white garments emblazoned with a red cross -just like the Templars. There is also a red cross that stands in a forest, and which falls prey to a priest who beats it 'in every part' with a rod, an episode which has a clear connection with the charge that the Templars spat and trampled on the cross. Once again, there is a curious scene involving severed heads. One of the Grail guardians tells the hero, Perceval, 'There are the heads in silver, and the heads sealed in lead, and the bodies whereunto these heads belong: I tell you that you must come thither the head both of the King and Queen.' "
(The Templar Revelation, Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince, pgs. 117-118)
There is much to discuss in this passage. The last section concerning the heads of Kings and Queens reminds me of a section from the Chymical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz, a key text in the Rosicrucian movement, as well as amongst alchemists. I've discussed the scenes of decapitations in the Chymical Wedding before here.

Another interesting aspect of this passage is the appearance of the Knights Templar in the Grail legends. Several of the Grail myths feature an order of knights guarding the Grail that seem to have been loosely based upon the Knights Templar. This is most evident in Wolfram von Eschenbach's Parzival in which the Grail knights are referred to as 'templeise.' The Knights Templar also have interesting connections to severed heads.
"As several commentators have pointed out, the charge that the knights worshipped a severed head -which was believed to be called Baphomet -has resonances with the Grail romances, in which, as we have seen, severed heads figure largely. The Templars were charged with ascribing Grail-like powers to this Baphomet: it could make the trees flower and the land fertile. In fact, not only were the Templars accused of revering this idol head, but they also owned a silver reliquary in the form of a female skull which was labelled simply caput (head) 58."
(ibid, pg. 121)
a common depiction of Baphomet, a severed head the Templars were said to worship

Picknett and Prince go on to speculate that the Grail was originally a severed head on a platter rather than a chalice. This is a pretty good theory. There is ample evidence that in Celtish culture skulls were used as sacred chalices in rituals.
"Livy records that when, in 216 BC, the Cisalpine Gauls ambushed and destroyed the army of the Roman ex-consul Postumius, they carried off this magistrate's head with the rest of the spoils with great pomp. 'They adorned his skull with gold according to their custom. And it served them as a sacred vessel from which to pour libations at festivals and at the same time as a drinking cup for the priests and keepers of the temple...' The symbolism of the skull is related to that of the head, regarded as the spoils of war, and that of the chalice. In this context one should mention the skulls found in a number of Celtic shrines in southern Gaul."
(Dictionary of Symbols, Jean Chevalier & Alain Gheerbrant, pg. 888)

the actual Grail?

We have now seen that heavy religious significance has been placed upon the head, and the severing of it, since before the Dawn of Man. The Neanderthals had customs associated with the head, as did the Celts, the Adena, the Aztecs, and the Knights Templar. This significance was adopted into Christianity in the figure of John the Baptist, who was beheaded by Herod Antipas on behalf of his stepdaughter, Salome. Thus, the head of the Baptist is the most well known decapitation in Western culture.

Salome displaying the head of John the Baptist during Herod's feast

The Baptist is of course hugely important in Western occult tradition. He is the patron saint of both the Knights Templar and the Freemasons. He has been credited as the 'Father of the Gnostics.' Indeed, one of the only surviving gnostic sect, the Mandaeans, consider the Baptist to be their chief prophet. All kinds of legends have sprung up around the legendary head of the Baptist. One of the most enduring is that the Knights Templar came into possession of it and that this head was the idol that they worshipped as Baphomet.

A detailed account of John the Baptist and the various occult traditions surrounding him is beyond the scope of this article. What's more, it would be misleading for I suspect the figure of John the Baptist was simply a stand in for a more ancient tradition. The great occultist Aleister Crowley came up with as compelling an explanation for the ritual use of decapitation as I've come across. I shall allow his disciple, Kenneth Grant, to break it down:
"Knowledge derived from qabalistic analysis of the names of ancient deities enabled Crowley to restore rituals which were of vital importance in his own initiation. The names of deities being nothing less than magical formulae, their restoration supplies the key to their invocation, or evocation, as the case may be. The most important rite that Crowley restored is the Preliminary Invocation of the Goetia, a mediaeval rite stemming from much earlier phase of magick which Crowley succeeded in redeeming from unintelligibility by transforming it into a powerfully thaumaturgic machine.

"The Invocation is based upon a translation by C.W. Goodwin of a Graeco-Egyptian Work on Magic. It is known as the Invocation of the Bornless One, or as Goodwin translated it, the Headless One. (The Headless One was a name given by the Gnostics to the Sun in Amenti, i.e. the Light in the Underworld. This concept was represented anciently by a decapitated figure, and it is paralleled by the Egyptian image of the lioness, or maneless lion, which represented the sun in its 'feminine' phase of passivity and darkness, the lion shorn of its mane, yet fierce with concealed force and hidden heat. In other words, the headless one typified the hidden god submerged below the horizon; in terms of psychology, the subconsciousness, the subliminal Will.)"
(The Magical Revival, Kenneth Grant, pg. 101) 


In the glossary, under 'Sirius', Grant is more forthcoming in regards to what exactly this 'hidden god' is that the Headless One represents.
"The Dog-Star. In the Arcane Tradition, the vast star, Sirius, symbolizes the sun behind the sun; i.e. the true father of our Universe. Sirius was the primordial star of all time, as the duplicator or renewer (of time cycles). He was known in Egypt as the Doubling One, therefore a Creator or reflector of the Image. Sirius, or Set, was the original 'headless one' -the light of the lower region (the South) who was known (in Egypt) as An (the dog), hence Set-an (Satan), Lord of the infernal regions, the place of heat, later interpreted in a moral sense as 'hell'.
(ibid, pgs. 226-227)

the Dog Star

In this context, the Baptist would make a fine stand in for the Headless One. In esoteric circles Sirius is viewed as the true sun, the hidden power behind the actual sun. In similar circles John the Baptist is seen as the true messiah behind the usurper, Jesus, who is closely associated with the sun.

What then are we to make of all the ritualistic forms of decapitation that I've chronicled earlier in this post? Is it possible that they are a kind of homage to the Headless One? In the case of the Aztec rituals, this seems extremely possible as apparently a decapitated figure was a kind of stand in for the hidden god. This would also seem to be the case concerning the myth of Lityerses, whose beheading was closely associated with the growth of vegetation. It would also seemingly be the reason behind the appearance of various severed heads in the Grail myths.

But what of the traditions that associated the removal of the head with permanent death, i.e. various vampire and zombie myths? Sirius was associated with the renewal of time cycles, where as time would seemingly come to an end in this case. Was their a seperate tradition concerning decapitation outside of the various Sirius cult that have appeared the world over and seemingly have close overlap with the aftermentioned skull cults?

And I thought this piece would be definitive of decapitation but clearly there is still much to uncover.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Latin American High Weirdness: The UFOs Part III

In the last installment of this series we once again considered the infamous Nine in relation to the UFO phenomenon in Latin America. While there seems to be some legitimate paranormal phenomenon involved with the Nine our next case subject is pure PSYOPs. In the 1970s, in the nation of Argentina, a branch of one of the most notorious government-backed UFO hoaxes set up shop. I am of course referring to the notorious UMMO affair. Much of UMMO unfolded in Europe, beginning in Spain in the mid-1960s, via a series of documents attributed to an extraterrestrial civilization known as Ummo. The Fortean Times notes:
"Some time around the end of 1965 and the beginning of 1966, a number of Spanish UFO enthusiasts received anonymous communications claiming to come from an “extraterrestrial expeditionary group” from the star Wolf 424 on a mission to Earth. The letters had been posted from various countries – including Spain, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, and Germany. Each was ‘authenticated’ with a strange logo designated the seal of 'the Unified government of the planet Ummo.' (Apparently the design was inked onto a fingertip, then used to ‘stamp’ on the letters...)

"The Ummo papers... were truly mystifying; they appeared to be skilled expositions, displayed a wide knowledge of science and philosophy and did not look like the ravings of lunatics. Over time, several hundred letters were received, some of them voluminous and illustrated manuscripts. Occasionally, someone received a phone call; the Ummite voice was curiously mechanical, as though deliberately distorted. Religious matters were dealt with historically – for Catholic readers, there was the added interest of learning about an ancient Ummite parallel to Christ in ‘Ummowoa’, a prophet whose body vanished from the table on which he was being vivisected by order of an evil Empress – but, behind the unverifiable and convoluted tracts about alien philosophy and the science of Ummo, was a sentiment that was clearly anti-Franco in its description of a utopian society that was a strange mix of communism and the 'American way of life'.

"The first recipients of the Ummo missions were loosely associated with the Sociedad de Amigos de los Visitantes del Espacio (Friends of Space Visitors Society) formed by Fernando Sesma to discuss UFOs and extraterrestrials. In 1970, a number of these recipients formed their own organisation, called ERIDANI, to study the Ummo case. Several of them wrote books – including Fernando Sesma’s Ummo: Another Inhabited Planet (1967) and Looking Toward The Edge Of The Universe (1968) by Father Enrique Lopez Guerrero, the best known outside Spain being Antonio Ribera’s The Ummo Mystery (1975). The authors differed widely in their opinions of the origin of the letters and the meaning of their contents, but they agreed on their extraterrestrial origin. The only alternative considered was that the letters were part of some kind of social engineering experiment perpetrated by an unknown intelligence agency – the KGB, the East German Stasi, the CIA and the Vatican organisation Opus Dei were all mooted, even by the Ummite letter-writer."

A Ummo 'spacecraft'

The legendary ufologist Jacques Vallee pondered whether or not the Ummo affair was linked to an Eastern bloc intelligence outfit during the Cold War.
"A disquieting possibility, under serious investigation by some French authorities, is that UMMO is linked to an Eastern bloc intelligence agency specialized in scientific espionage.

"'The idea is not as farfetched as it may seem at first sight,' a French specialist told me. 'Setting up such a group could have the effect of channeling a lot of grass-roots UFO information, some of it very private, toward the leaders of the group. But more importantly, it could help them acquire valuable, confidential insight into current scientific research ideas in Western laboratories...'

"The obvious link between an alleged extraterrestrial sect and some advanced ideas in modern science is troubling. If the ramifications of the UMMO group into a network designed for the gathering of technical and scientific intelligence, or into the French and German structure of the LaRouche movement, can be confirmed, another nail will be hammered into the coffin of the friendly space brothers."
(Revelations, Jacques Vallee, pgs. 115-116)
Western UFO organizations as a means of tracking recent scientific developments? This explanation seems rather weak to me, especially since many civilian UFO organizations aren't exactly known for their hard approach to science. Keeping tabs on these organization as a way of tracking potentially unstable individuals seems much more likely, especially if a Western intelligence outfit was behind the Ummo affair. Another possibility is that the UMMO affair was meant as a sociological experiment, which Vallee is also rather dismissive of.
"...that UMMO was created as a government-sponsered sociological exercise that somehow acquired a life of its own and got out of hand, with diverse individuals or groups getting into the act for their own ego gratification or gain...

"I am not they are right. A genuine sect, of the type often used as cover by intelligence agencies, could have been created more effectively by conventional means, such as providing financing to an existing group with a suitably charismatic leader. But obviously we do not have the whole story. The remarkable fact in the UMMO hoax is that it has no visible leaders. It is simply a framework within which multiple successive authors can in fact operate. A disturbing fact discovered by French investigators seems to link some of the scientists of the UMMO group with the LaRouche extremist movement in Europe. If that link can be verified, the UMMO mystery will take a sinister turn.

"UMMO, is certainly one of the best examples of the systematic application of confusion techniques in the paranormal field. The novelty in the hoax was to create ostensibly genuine sightings that would result in innocent witnesses coming forward to be interviewed by the media and by well-intentioned UFO investigators who could only conclude they were sincere, while the perpetrators remained in the background, manipulating the photographic and physical evidence."
(ibid, pg. 110)

Lyndon LaRouche

A few points: The LaRouche movement Vallee keeps referring to is in reference to the followers of Lyndon LaRouche, a far left American 'activist' who has never the less inspired followers internationally that encompass both the radical left and right. The so-called LaRouche movement became quite notorious in Europe in the 80s and early 1990s. Another point: Vallee dismisses the notion of the UMMO affair as a sociological experiment on the basis that it doesn't have a central leader like other such intelligence operations. However, that might have been the whole point of the experiment: to see if a movement could be created in such an anonymous and decentralized fashion and to see what direction it would take from there. Various intelligence agencies may have simply leaked the initial UMMO documents, then stood back and observed the fruits they bore.

Anyway, back to Latin America. The UMMO affair has several interesting links to this region to the world. For one, the whole movement seems to have been inspired by a short story by the legendary Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges called "Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius."
"According to Borges' story, Tlon is a hypothetical planet invented by a group of clever men financed in the United States by an eccentric Southern aristocrat in Memphis. They use their own talents and that of various contractors to produce a monumental work, an encyclopedia of Tlon, complete with the details of the languages, the philosophies, and the mathematics of Tlon. But they only reveal a little bit of it at a time to the unsuspecting public. The founders, who are members of a secret society called Orbis Tertius, have sworn to remain hidden forever...

"Following the gradual release of the Memphis collection of the secret forty-volume Tlon Encyclopedia, more and more people will start to believe in Tlon, a belief reinforced by the discovery of Tlonian objects made of unusual materials around the world. Borges points out diabolically that as the belief in Tlon grows, our own society, which doesn't know that there is no such thing as Tlon, will start producing iys own spurious hronir, pseudofacts and quasimemories of Tlon that will slowly replace the old reality. Borges even envisions a future state where the hoax begun by the secret society he calls Orbis Tertius will have totally disintegrated the rational world...

"The frightening, even terrifying fact, says Borges, is that the unknown masters of Orbis Tertius are slowly substituting their own reality for ours. Indeed, the earth will soon have become Tlon!"
(ibid, pgs. 111-113)

Vallee makes light of the Borges story, but in reality it is quite apt: The true objective of both occult societies and intelligence agencies is the manipulation of reality, as I've noted before here. UMMO has other curious links to Argentina, in addition to Borges. It concerns the so-called International Medical Research Facility located in Canuelas. Continuing with Vallee:
"The man who brought this remarkable development to my attention in 1979 is a dynamic South American researcher who sent me two photographs of a so-called International Medical Research Facility located in Canuelas. The first photograph showed a modern one-story building protected by a six-foot-high wire fence. Next to the building was a large flying saucer apparently made of metal and plastic, some twenty feet in diameter and twenty feet high.

"The second photograph was a plaque bearing the UMMO symbol, the inscription HONO INTELLIGENCE SERVICE -1901, and a list of fifteen names.

"Investigation into this new twist of the UMMO affair was pursued energetically. It was soon learned that the director of the facility, a man named Carlos Jerez, had disappeared without a trace. Started about 1973, the facility had been involved in various claims of cancer cures. In a letter signed by Jerez, the statement was made that such cures were achieved through 'highly sophisticated electronic equipment.' The stationary used by Jerez bears the logo of UMMO and its colors -purple and green -and a seal with the coat of arms of the State of Argentina is affixed over Jerez's signature, giving the impression that his work has received official sanction...

"Later investigation disclosed that the mysterious cancer cures made use of gamma rays, and that a number of allegedly terminal patients had been improved or even cured at the facility, whose owners claimed they came from outer space.

"The organization itself was said to have been founded in France by a grandfather of Mr. Jerez, who emigrated to Argentina in 1927, settling in Baradero. The facility received official approval for medical work with terminal patients in 1935, 1948, and 1966, but the medical system used combined impressive-sounding gadgetry with the usual claims of modern quacks: it blends gamma rays with cybernetic energy, which Jerez describes as 'the heat field which surrounds the tissues.'

"At the time the facility was closed down by the authorities, it was treating about two hundred patients with cancer or neurological disease."
(ibid, pgs. 108-109)
Vallee concludes that Jerez had no involvement in the creation of the UMMO hoax, he simply tried to attach himself to the movement, yet he never specifies when the International Medical Research Facility began affiliating itself with UMMO. If the affiliation stretches back to the 1930s, then the whole UMMO hoax must be reconsidered. This would imply that it was a long term intelligence operation that has only gradually worked its way into the public conscious. It is only now, in the twenty-first century, that especially sinister aspects are beginning to emerge. This is most notable in Bolivia amongst the so-called 'Daughters of Ummo' cult.

A Daughters of Ummo member recruiting followers

The Fortean Times reports:
"In essence, the Daughters are brainwashed into believing that the Ummites who came to Earth represent a race of superior beings who are somehow, simultaneously, both extraterrestrial entities and their own ‘fathers’ and ‘mothers’. The Daughters conduct rituals worshipping the Ummites and believe they have been empowered to do their will, to prepare the planet for a new, larger invasion of Ummites in the year 2033...

"In March 1999, I received a new and totally unexpected Ummite document; this time it was from Florencia Dinovi Gutiérrez, the organisation’s apparently fearsome president. I must come to Bolivia immediately, she demanded, because I had been accepted to enter the organisation as an 'external contributor'. My research into the history of Florencia Dinovi Gutiérrez led to a mental hospital in Peru from which, some years back, a woman answering her description had absconded while being treated for millennialist obsessions and hallucinations about aliens. To check the possibility that this notorious patient might have been Gutiérrez, I spoke to Dr Horacio Torna at the hospital. He listened patiently as I described the beliefs of the Daughters of Ummo and their leader. 'It’s her,' he said hoarsely. 'It’s Juana Pordiavel!' This identification was confirmed after the doctor cautiously sent me some pages from Pordiavel’s personal file, with the condition that I wouldn’t publish them.
"Juana Pordiavel... was born in Cuzco, Peru, in 1912, to a humble peasant family. When she was 12, she left home claiming that her father had abused her. She lived rough in the streets by begging, until a Spanish priest – Hermenegildo Abustín – took pity on her condition and invited her to live in the church. This act of kindness was a major turning point in her life; Hermenegildo believed Juana had the potential to become a nun and became her tutor. In return for cleaning the church, the priest bought her books and encouraged her intellectual development. He remembers her reading biblical texts with passion and, in time, becoming more confident about her culture and language. By the time she left the church, aged 19, her belief in fundamentalist theology was informed by her general dissatisfaction with life, providing the ideal ingredients for a future sect leader.
"Pordiavel spent some time in a mental hospital in 1941 and eventually met Carlos Opanova, who, despite suffering from a few mental problems of his own, was leader of a fanatical spiritualist organisation called ‘The Deer of the Sixth Christ’. They fell in love and married. In 1963, the Deer moved to Oruro, in Bolivia, where they took over (or squatted) a building, calling it ‘The New Heavenly Jerusalem’. The group’s nocturnal ceremonies began to annoy the neighbours, who complained of hearing strange voices in the nights and of missing children. At some time during this period, Pordiavel was again interned in a mental hospital.
"When the curiosity of the police became too intrusive in 1967, the Deer fled their ‘Heavenly Jerusalem’ in scattered groups. Taking a big chunk of the organisation’s money, Juana and Carlos bought a small flat in La Paz and began to re-invent themselves. Carlos had been corresponding with the Spanish ufologist Jiménez del Oso, who sent them copies of many of the original Ummite writings – which proved to be a revelation to Opanova. Dazzled by the Ummite picture of a better world, a world that could be theirs, Opanova decided to adopt the philosophy and teachings of Ummo. From now on Opanova’s disciples would be devoted to the emulation of all things Ummite.
"And so, in 1969, the Deer finally became the Daughters of Ummo. Juana baptised herself Florencia Dinovi Gutiérrez while her husband took on the persona of ‘Yiewaka’, an Ummite ‘father’ on Earth. The sect grew beyond their wildest dreams, taking advantage of cruel social circumstances; as much as 90 per cent of its members are drawn from the poor and uneducated, many recruited directly from the streets. Apparently, the Daughters are not puzzled by the contradiction of Opanova being both Juana’s husband and an incarnate Ummite appointed as president and ‘father-in-law’ of Earth; to them it is part of the unquestioned mystery."

Florencia Dinovi Gutiérrez, the head oof the Daughters of Ummo cult

You just have to love Latin American cults with ties to Europe and/or the United States and displaying the specter of PSYOPs. I've written more on this topic here, here, and here.

Anyway, we shall return to Brazil for one final cluster of close encounters before wrapping things up. They concern mysterious crafts referred to as chupas by the local populace. These sightings began occurring in the mid-1970s and seemingly continued through the mid-1980s in the extremely rural interior of Brazil. The chupas are most notable for the deaths surrounding them.
"In recent years the most remarkable cases of UFO-related injuries and deaths have taken place in the northeast of Brazil, in a vast region that extends from the mouth of the Amazon (Belem and the island of Marajo, which is located on the equator about 300 miles from French Guiana) to Sao Luis and the town of Teresina...

"On the basis of the information gathered so far, there seem to be three major clusters of cases: around the small town of Parnarama, around Sao Luis, and around Belem.

"At least five people are said to have died near Parnarama following close encounters with what were described as boxlike UFOs equipped with powerful light beams. These objects, which have been called chupas by the local population, fly over the wooded areas and the river valleys at night...

"In most cases the witnesses reported rectangular objects (sometimes compared to ice boxes) flying over the treetops and shining a beam toward the earth. The chupas are said to make a humming sound like a refrigerator or a transformer, and this sound does not change when the object accelerates. The object does not seem large enough to contain a human pilot. It has a light on the bottom and a light at one end, giving a sealed beam like a car headlight...

"The Santana events had taken place ten years before those in Parnarama between 1972 and 1975. Objects were said to hover near the Acarau River, emitting peculiar flickering light beams with which a sensation of cold was associated. Here again, the objects were described as boxlike, similar to a VW bus. One of the firsthand witnesses stated that he had escaped the beam of light of a chupa by hiding under a tree overhanging the river...

"In recent years Bob Pratt, an American researcher, has gone to Brazil several times to investigate a series of events that took place in 1977 on Crab Island, near Sao Luis. In that case one man died and two were badly burned. Pratt reported in 1987 that similar incidents had taken place at the same location in 1986, with one man dead, another injured, and two others unconscious for 15 hours. He stated, however, that the link to UFO activity was 'tenuous' at best in both reports."
(Confrontations, Jacques Vallee, pgs. 131-136)

an alleged image of a chupa

The involvement of researcher Bob Pratt in the chupas encounters is interesting. Pratt cut his teeth in the UFO field via the National Enquirer where his work eventually gained the respect of the UFO field. The National Enquirer, like about everything else associated with UFOs, has curious links to the intelligence community, however.
"Bob Pratt later said that its publisher, Generoso Pope Jr, spent tens of thousands of dollars sending him all over the world chasing UFO stories, even though they sold fewer issues than celebrity stories. Pratt thought Pope was a genuine believer in UFOs, though others have suspected an intelligence connection. Pope spent a year being trained in psychological operations by the CIA in 1951, the year before he bought the Enquirer. He was also a close friend of Nixon's Defense Secretary, Melvin Laird."
(Mirage Men, Mark Pilkington, pg. 139)

Bob Pratt

Pratt would go on to become involved in the whole Bennewitz affair, one of the most heavily documented instances of PSYOPs in ufology. I've chronicled the sad fate Paul Bennewitz before here and here. But I digress -back to the chupas. Another region of Brazil in which they appeared is an area around the city of Belem. Incidentally (or not), a branch of the Brazilian air force charged with UFO investigations just so happened to have a branch headquartered at Belem at the time the chupas made the scene.
"The Brazilian military, which has been engaged for many years in one of the most serious investigations of the phenomenon conducted anywhere around the world, took the 1977 events around Belem very serious indeed. Starting in 1974, the Belem headquarters of the 1st Regional Air Command (COMAR), covering an area four times as large as France, maintained a UFO field investigation team...

"When the events of 1977 started in the area around Belem, the Air Force, as noted above, sent a field task force to the region, notably to the islands of Colares. Its mission lasted ninety days. The task force came back with three hundred night photographs and several motion picture reels. A five hundred-page report was compiled, accompanied by a catalogue of the sightings, maps, and interview transcripts. Copies were sent to Barreira do Inferno (the Gate of Hell) in the state of Rio Grande do Norte. Some researchers believe it ids an appropriate destination for such a report about the elusive chupas and the unfortunate human victims caught in their impossible light."
(Confrontations, Jacques Vallee, pgs.138-139)
Vallee elaborates on this mysterious report a bit later.
"There were not one but two series of photographs, movie films, and tape recordings that were made during this period. The military team, which operated in full view of the population, is known to have compiled a thick report with a wealth of physical measurements attached. The report was sent to higher authorities in Brasilia, where it presumably disappeared into a drawer.

"The second team was composed of journalists and cameramen who were almost as well equipped as the military. They obtained excellent photos, which can be consulted in the newspaper archives of that period. Unfortunately... only the negatives have scientific potential. And all the negatives taken by the newspaper teams have left Brazil, purchased from the publishers by an unnamed American firm.

"Somebody in the United States owns a collection of records that contains the proof of the reality of the phenomenon."
(ibid, pg. 225)

A chupa?

By all accounts the Belem sightings were quite spectacular. The sudden disappearance of most of the documentation gathered during the sightings is even more so. Was the cover up so swift because hard evidence was gathered of the existence of UFOs, as Vallee implies? Or was the another reason, such as the unveiling of a top secret military aircraft? If the latter was the case, the Brazilian Air Force may have provided an adequate foil. Or perhaps they were simply charged with covering up the evidence after the test were finished.

What I find most striking about the chupas is their similarities to the unmanned drones that are becoming more and more common everyday. Many will probably scoff at this notion, but I can't help but feel the chupas were a prototype of this type of technology that has now become common. Many will dismiss this theory outright because of the well documented light beam weapons the chupas were said to use. Certainly there are no official accounts of unmanned drones possessing such weapons. But then again, unmanned drones have probably existed much longer than official accounts would have us believe. The same could apply to advanced weapons.

Were the chupas possibly prototypes of unmanned drones, such this one, the MQ-1 Predator?

So, what are we to make of the UFOs of Latin America? Certainly they seem out of place in the 'nuts and bolts' world of mainstream American ufology. Were they simply a cover for advanced air crafts or medical experiments involving brainwashing? Did the Cryptocracy legitimately believe that they could contact a non-human intelligence using drugs and occult rituals and attempt such a working in Brazil and other locations? It seems likely that all three possibilities have some merit in addition to the sociological implications of how a populace would react to confrontations with an advanced intelligence. About all that can be said, when all is said and done, is that the possibilities are endless.

High strangeness indeed.

Possibly the best ever use of the Ummo symbol...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Latin American High Weirdness: The UFOs Part II

In the first installment of this series I reviewed several of the more bizarre UFO encounters to emerge from South America. One of the most celebrated of these encounters was that of Antonio Villas Boas, a Brazilian farmer taken on board a spaceship where he enjoyed sexual relations with a four-and-a-half foot blonde in an effort to create a human/alien hybrid. Or so ufologist claim. Recent evidence has emerged that Villas Boas was in fact used as part of a bizarre experiment conducted by the CIA and military.
"Until his death in Fairfax, Virginia in 1999, Bosco Nedelcovic was an interpreter and translator at the Inter-American Defense College, which educates future leaders of Latin American nations. In 1978 the Yugoslavian emigre confided in the American UFO researcher Rich Reynolds that, during the 1950s and 1960s, the CIA had deliberately manufactured UFO incidents all over the world as part of a project called Operation Mirage. What's more, Nedelcovic, who between 1956 and 1963 had worked for the CIA in Latin America under the Agency for International Development (AID), was himself present at some of these staged events. And one of them was the Villas Boas abduction.

"Nedelcovic claimed that in mid-October 1957 he was part of a helicopter team conducting psychological warfare and hallucinogenic drug tests in the Minas Gerias region of Brazil. The team included himself, two other CIA employees,  a doctor, two naval officers -one American and one Brazilian -plus a three-man crew. Various items of electronic equipment were on board, as was a metal 'cubicle' about five feet long and three feet wide. Nedelcovic was never told what it was for, only that it was used by the military in psychological warfare operations.

"Initially the team flew around their base of operations at Uberaba, about 150 miles east of Sao Francisco de Sales, testing the electronic equipment. A few days later they flew along the Rio Grande and conducted another night sweep. Using heat-sensing cameras they identified a lone figure on the ground. The helicopter descended to about 200 feet then released an aerosol sedative. The helicopter landed, and the man ran, pursued by the three CIA operatives who grabbed him and hauled him into the helicopter, banging his chin on the deck as they did so. Nedelcovic makes no mention of what was done to the man while on board, only that after a few hours they left him, still unconscious, next to his tractor.

"So was this man Antonio Villas Boas? Elements of Nedelcovic's account do correspond to the farmer's story, for example the timing, geography, weather conditions and bruising under their victim's chin. Likewise many aspects of Villas Boas's account, his kidnappers' costumes for instance, sound more human than alien. Their aircraft also sounds as if it could have been a helicopter, modified either by his own imagination or by some crafty sci-fi refitting; the unusual number of coloured and white lights on the exterior may have given it an extra UFO-like feel, while the 'rotating' dome on its top might have been rotor blades. Countering this, a large helicopter makes a lot of noise, and it would be some years before 'quiet' helicopters were operational in the field. Even late at night in such a remote area, somebody would surely have heard the chopper, an unusual sound in rural Brazil at the time.

"Other parts of the story also ring true. At the time of the incident the CIA and the US military were firmly established in Brazil, and all over Latin America, keeping close tabs on political developments in the region. Brazil was considered a particularly sensitive nation; its vast size, considerable natural resources and proximity to the US made it a ripe target for Soviet expansion. Things would come to a head in 1964 when the CIA participated in a coup to oust President Joao Goulart, replacing him with a brutal military junta that held power for the next two decades.

"In 1957 the CIA was also deeply involved in its MK-ULTRA programme, researching mind and behaviour-altering techniques involving drugs, surgery and technology. They experimented with a number of psychoactive substances -hallucinogens, sedatives, stimulants, psychomimetics and more -often so entirely unwitting subjects. Would the CIA have conducted some tests on subjects outside of their own jurisdiction? Certainly. For the CIA at this time, the entire world was within its jurisdiction.
"Villas Boas was repeatedly sick during and after his experience, and also suffered unpleasant physiological effects that Fontes took to be related to radiation exposure. Might the strange 'cubicle' described by Nedelcovic have been used to illicitly test the effects of radiation exposure?Although Nedelcovic doesn't mention what they wore for the helicopter flights, Villas Boas's description of the entities' clothing and helmets could be conceived of as radiation-protection gear."
(Mirage Men, Mark Pilkington, pgs. 111-113)

Villas Boas' actual abductors?

If Villas Boas was a part of some kind of CIA experiment then some sense can be made of the prior encounters mentioned in part one involving Jose Antonio and Manuel and Miguel. The case of Antonio has several overt overlaps with Villas Boas. Both Antonio and Villas Boas were grabbed by strangely dressed beings on the ground. Both were taken into a spaceship by these beings. Both were confronted with bizarre sexual encounters on board the ship. Both encounters share similarities with the effects of psychedelic drugs.

The connections are less clear as far as Manuel and Miguel are concerned. We have no direct eye witness accounts of the experiences of both men. In all three cases physical air crafts of some kind were a factor while psychedelic drugs were seemingly used in all three encounters as well. The cases of Antonio and Manuel/Miguel have strong occult ties. The experiences of Villas Boas is very similar to a fairy abduction of old.

Another curious overlap between the Manuel/Miguel case and that of Villas Boas is the ufologist that was instrumental in investigating either case, Professor Olavo Fontes of the National School of Medicine in Rio de Janeiro. Fontes was a member of APRO, a civilian UFO research agency that was heavily infiltrated by the US Intelligence community. This was directly mandated in the infamous Robertson Report.
"The Robertson Report also recommended that civilian UFO groups be monitored, 'because of their potentially great influence on mass thinking if widespread sightings should occur. [Their] apparent irresponsibility and the possible use of such groups for subversive purposes should be kept in mind.' For the next two decades, one of the groups mentioned by name, the Aerial Phenomena Research Organization (APRO) of Tucson, Arizona, found itself under close scrutiny by the intelligence services."
(ibid, pg. 86)

the Lorenzens, the founders of ARPO

The figure of Professor Olavo Fontes is quite curious as well.
"...Dr. Olavo Fontes, a respected young medical doctor who would become Vice President of the Brazilian Society of Gastroenterology and Nutrition before dying of cancer in 1968, while still in his thirties. Fontes had become fascinated by dramatic reports of UFOs over Brazil in late 1954 and, after starting to investigate individual cases on his own, joined APRO, the American UFO organization recommended for observation by the Robertson Panel, in early 1957...

"...Fontes's career as Brazil's foremost ufologist and setting him up for an odd close encounter of his own. In February 1958 Fontes was visited by two Brazilian Naval Ministry intelligence officers who wanted to talk to him about the Ubatuba material. After warning him not to poke his nose into matters that 'did not concern him', they proceeded to tell him everything they knew about the secret UFO cover-up. The world's government, they said, were aware of the extraterrestrial presence on Earth and were doing everything they could to keep a lid on it. Six flying saucers of between thirty and a hundred feet in diameter had crashed thus far, three in the US (two in good condition) one in the UK, one in the Sahara and one in Scandinavia. All of the craft had contained short, humanoid occupants, none of whom had survived, and scientists were currently trying, unsuccessfully, to back-engineer these saucers, which seemed to be powered by strong rotating electromagnetic fields, along with an atomic component. The UFO occupants themselves had shown no interest in contacting humankind and were to be considered extremely hostile, having already destroyed a number of aircraft sent to pursue them. The UFO matter, they warned hum, was held at the highest level of secrecy -even Brazil's president was kept in the dark on the matter -and was considered sensitive enough that some witnesses and researchers had been assassinated to prevent them from leaking information.

"Fontes was left puzzled but unbowed by the visit. He may even have asked the same question we should: why, if the UFO matter was so secret that even the president couldn't be told, had so many of the Navy men's revelations already been printed in popular books and magazines? And why were they telling Fontes, who immediately shared the information with Coral and Jim Lorenzen APRO's directors, confirming similar rumours that they had heard from other sources? Was it because somebody wanted Fontes and APRO to believe these tales, and to share them, in the same way Silas Newton had been encouraged to keep spreading his crashed saucer stories back in 1950?"
(ibid, pgs. 106-107)


Fontes would go on to die of cancer while still in his 30s. Is it possible Fontes was an unwitting disinformation agent, spreading the extraterrestrial gospel for encounters instigated by the CIA and like organizations? Did Fontes eventually suspect this, which led to his early death? Vallee acquired much of Fontes' research rather hastily.
"Today my files of UFO data bulge to a barely manageable volume that occupies fourteen well-packed file cabinet drawers. They are organized by country, and the file on Brazil contains a series of original documents that were given to me shortly before his death from cancer, by a highly skilled investigator, a medical doctor named Dr. Olavo Fontes.

"When Dr. Fontes visited us in Chicago in 1967 he took this bundle of case reports from his suitcase. 'I want you to have these,' he said. Was he already aware that he would soon die?"
(Confrontations, Jacques Vallee, pg. 14)

the legendary ufologist Jacques Vallee, who was the model for a character in Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which he was also a consultant on

Whatever the case, something very strange was going on in Brazil in the 1960s. CIA-backed UFO PSYOPs would fit right in with the rogue's gallery of individuals wandering around the nation then, such as our old friend Andrija Puharich (of whom I've written much more on herehere, and here), the Nazi angel of death Joseph Mengele, the CIA interrogation 'specialist' Dan Mitrione, and even Jim Jones himself.

The figure of Andrija Puharich is especially interesting to our current investigation. Puharich was an Army officer that worked out of Edgewood Arsenal and Camp Detrick in the early 1950s on behalf of the Pentagon, the CIA, and Naval Intelligence. Puharich was involved in bizarre research concerning parapsychology, ELF electromagnetic waves emissions, UFOs, and psychedelic drugs for both the government and the private sector. By the late 1950s Puharich seemingly became convinced that he was in contact with a group of extraterrestrial entities known as the Nine.
"The Nine revealed themselves as extraterrestrial beings living on an immense spacecraft hovering invisibly over the planet. The assembled congregation had been selected to promote the agenda of The Nine on earth. As Puharich would later write in his biography of Uri Geller, 'We took every known precaution against fraud, and the staff and I became thoroughly convinced that we were dealing with some kind of an extraordinary extraterrestrial intelligence.' This belief was reinforced by events that took place over the next twenty years, culminating in the Uri Geller experience, when it seemed there were UFOs following everyone around from Israel to South America to New York State. Indeed, Puharich became obsessed with The Nine, seeing them behind every psychic encounter, every UFO sighting, every paranormal event."
(Sinister Forces Book One, Peter Levenda, pg. 247)

An especially curious encounter involving the Nine happened to Puharich and the Dutch psychic Peter Hurkos in the mid-1950s in Mexico.
"Although out of the Army, Puharich was still quite busy. He found himself in Mexico with his psychic friend, Peter Hurkos, (and, it seems, Arthur Young) in July 1956 to 'help solve an archaeological problem.' As Puharich was involved in locating drugs that could stimulate psychic abilities, it seems likely that he was there with Hurkos on just such an agenda; neither Puharich nor Hurkos had any archaeological credentials. While in the town of Acambaro, he and Hurkos ran into an American couple from Arizona who eventually claimed that they had been receiving instructions from The Nine. Neither Puharich nor Hurkos had ever met these people before, but it seems they were working with a medium back in Arizona who was also channeling The Nine. To prove this, they sent letters to Puharich the following month with sealed communications from The Nine that referred to details of the specific seances that Puharich had chaired back in Maine. This was the proof that Puharich was looking for. The details went so far as to include a variation of the Lorentz-Einstein Transformation formula that had formed part of the first seance."
(ibid, pg. 248)

Hurkos (top) and Young (bottom)

Again we see connections between UFOs, the American Intelligence community (which Puharich was involved with) and psychedelic drugs. Is it possible that some faction of the Intelligence community believed that contact could be established with non-human beings through the use of hallucinogens? Were encounters such as those involving Villas Boas, Manuel & Miguel, and Jose Antonio attempts to open a kind of mental stargate with these beings? Certainly the concept of ritualistic drug use to contact extraterrestrial beings was not unheard of in Latin America.
"In March 1986, in a situation strangely reminiscent of the Morro do Vintem tragedy, two young men were found dead on the beach at Grumari, just outside Rio de Janeiro. They were Olavo Mena Barreta, a computer technician from a prominent family, and Wellington Barros Wanderley, an office worker and former engineering student with an interest in Rosicrucian traditions. Olavo was the organizer of a small UFO group to which Wellington belonged.

"Near the bodies were two empty bottles of Guarana, smelling of something else, similar to ammonia. The police noted no signs of violence; the two men had not been robbed. They died with their arms outstretched.

"Were the two experimenting with drugs to induce an out-of-body experience to contact UFO beings on what occultists call the astral plane? Had they simply died from an overdose of the strange-smelling substances found in the bottles? Could a similar scenario explain the deaths of Manuel and Miguel in Niteroi? But what about the sightings of the large luminous objects above the mountain that day?

"Since no UFO was described in connection with the Grumari case, the incident does not seem directly relevant to the question of the lethal impact of UFOs, but it does provide an important indication of the social context of the phenomenon in Brazil, where UFO cases cannot always be separated from occult practices and beliefs."
(Confrontations, Jacques Vallee, pgs. 128-129)

Officially Puharich visited Brazil in 1962 to study the legendary psychic surgeon Arigo, but could this curious feature of Brazilian culture have also held interest to Puharich? Certainly it would be in keeping with Puharich's experiences with the Nine and consistent with the metaphysical group of researcher (of which Jacques Vallee was involved with) Puharich and his good friend Arthur Young would shepherd in the 1970s. I've written more on this group here.

And with that, I shall wrap things up for now. While there seems to be some legitimate paranormal phenomenon involved in the Nine, the subjects of the next installment are pure PSYOPs and disinformation. Or not. Stay tuned for the next installment and make up your own mind.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Virginia Tech Redux -Update

I'm currently away from home, and thus will not be able to discuss the latest V-Tech shooting as thoroughly as I would like without the benefit of my library. There are so many bizarre synchronicities in this tragedy that pages upon pages could be written about it, but for now I will only be able to offer a rundown. For those of you living under rock, here's an account of the latest shooting:
"The man who authorities say killed a Virginia Tech police officer was described as a typical college student in many ways, making it difficult to understand why he would commit an armed robbery and then, apparently at random, target the patrolman before killing himself.

"The gunman was identified Friday as Ross Truett Ashley, a 22-year-old part-time business student at Radford University, about 10 miles from the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg. He first drew authorities'attention Wednesday when, they say, he walked into his landlord's office with a handgun and demanded the keys to a Mercedes-Benz SUV...

"Virginia State Police said he walked up to officer Deriek W. Crouseafter noon on Thursday and shot him to death as the patrolman sat in his unmarked cruiser during a traffic stop. Ashley was not involved in the stop and did not know the driver, who is cooperating with police, they said.

"Authorities said Ashley then took off for the campus greenhouses, ditching his pullover, wool cap and backpack as police quickly sent out a campus-wide alert that a gunman was on the loose. Officials said the alert system put in place after the nation's worst mass slaying in recent memory worked well, but it nevertheless rattled a community still coping with the day a student gunman killed 32 people and then himself.

"A deputy sheriff on patrol noticed a man acting suspiciously in a parking lot about a half-mile from the shooting. The deputy drove up and down the rows of the sprawling Cage parking lot and lost sight of the man for a moment, then found Ashley shot to death on the pavement, a handgun nearby. No one saw him take his life and he wasn't carrying any ID."

the shooter, Ross Truett Ashley

In addition to the obvious connection to the spree shooting that occurred at Virginia Tech in 2007 that left 33 people dead including the shooter, there is also a connection to the Fort Hood shootings of 2009 via the police officer, Deriek Crouse, that was killed. Continuing with MSNBC:
"Crouse was a member of the Army Reserves who served a year in Iraq beginning in March 2004, according to the U.S. Army Human Resources Command. He was assigned to active duty service at Fort Hood, Texas from October 1993 until July 1996, where he was listed as an M1 armor crewman, or tank operator. From July 1996 to May 2001, Crousewas listed as a motor transport operator with the 316th Sustainment Command in Galax, Va. Crouse's last rank was staff sergeant."

Officer Crouse was stationed at Fort Hood, which was also the site of a mass shooting

The latest V-Tech shooter, Ross Truett Ashley, also seems to have taken a page from Jared Lee Loughner's fashion sensibilities. From the MSNBC article:
"Those who knew Ashley said he could be standoffish. He liked to run down the hallways and recently shaved his head, a neighbor said."


Loughner, whom I've written more on here, shaved his head shortly before his shooting spree in Tucson that centered around U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords. The latest Virginia Tech shooting occurred exactly 11 months after the Tucson shooting. According to Aleister Crowley, 11 is the number of magic.
"11. The great magical number, as uniting the antitheses of 5 and 6 etc. AVD the magic force itself."
(Gematria, pg. 43)
Virginia Tech has an interesting history of massacres. The campus was built either near or on the site of the Draper's Meadow massacre that occurred amidst the French and Indian war. Of the massacre, Wikipedia notes:
"A group of Shawnee entered the sparsely populated camp virtually unimpeded. At least five settlers were killed: Mr. Patton, Elenor Draper (Mary Draper Ingles' mother), Bettie Draper's baby, Casper,[2] and Philip Barger, who was described as an old man and was decapitated by the Indians; they delivered his head in a bag to a neighbor, explaining that an acquaintance had arrived to visit[3]. Five settlers were taken back to Kentucky as captives to live among the tribe, including Mary Draper Ingles [1], who escaped at Big Bone, Kentucky, and made a journey of more than eight hundred miles (1300 km) across the Appalachian Mountains back to Draper's Meadow. Her marriage to William Ingles is said to be the first white wedding west of the Alleghenies. Also taken captive were her two sons; one of whom, Thomas Ingles, lived among the Indians for many years and never fully gave up the Shawnee way of life.[1]"

a monument to the Draper's Meadow massacre at Virgina Tech

The date of the shooting, December 8th, is also very loaded. In recent times it is most noted for the death of John Lennon, who was murdered by Mark David Chapman in front of the Dakota building in 1980. The Lennon killing has been an object of speculation in conspiracy culture of years. Many believe Chapman was a 'programmed' killer, as were many other notorious three-named assassins over the years. Our latest shooter, Ross Truett Ashley, has already gained such a distinction.

John Lennon and Mark David Chapman

The date of December 8th has a strange connection with the Stuart dynasty as well. The Stuarts are also objects of much speculation in conspiracy circles. They have been linked with Jesus Christ's bloodline line via theories surrounding the Merovingian dynasty. They have also been credited with spreading the Scottish branch of Freemasonry to France during the flight of Charles Stuart I. Mary Stuart, who was beheaded during the reign of Elizabeth I, was born on December 8, 1542. Charles Radclyffe, a staunch follower of the Stuart dynasty, died on December 8th, 1756. Radclyffe was an allegedly Grand Master in the Priory of Sion.

Mary Stuart (top), who was born on December 8th, and Charles Radclyffe (bottom), who died on that date 

Finally, December 8th plays into the enigma of 23, made famous by Robert Anton Wilson. On the 23 enigma, Wilson wrote:
"I first heard of the 23 enigma from William S Burroughs, author of Naked Lunch, Nova Express, etc. According to Burroughs, he had known a certain Captain Clark, around 1960 in Tangier, who once bragged that he had been sailing 23 years without an accident. That very day, Clark’s ship had an accident that killed him and everybody else aboard. Furthermore, while Burroughs was thinking about this crude example of the irony of the gods that evening, a bulletin on the radio announced the crash of an airliner in Florida, USA. The pilot was another captain Clark and the flight was Flight 23.

Burroughs began collecting odd 23s after this gruesome synchronicity, and after 1965 I also began collecting them."
There are 23 days remaining in the year after December 8th.

Robert Anton Wilson and the number 23

And this, dear reader, concludes our V-Tech shooting round up. Cheers.

UPDATE 12/11/11:

Loren Coleman has some more interesting synchs surrounding the latest VA Tech shooting. I urge my readers to check out his latest post here.