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The Cult of UFOlogy: A rational discussion

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posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 12:04 PM
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This is intended to be the basis of a discussion, not the foundation of a flame-festival. Please gauge your responses accordingly.

Superstition, Religion, UFOlogy... here... in 2008... they have all evolved into the same thing: a system of beliefs that center around supernatural powers that have designs on, or influence over, humanity's destiny.

Relics, zealots, antagonists, supernatural occurrences, laymen, documented "evidence", artifacts, philosophies, fables, and dogmas. There are accepted ways to approach the issue and an approach to the topic outside canon is vilified and those who espouse such philosophies are "debunkers" and "skeptics" and "closed-minded".

Do things occur in our daily existence that we do not understand? Absolutely. Richard Dawkins described it best by calling us "Middle World" creatures. Our senses have evolved to only perceive the median input required for our survival to the exclusion of all the other information being presented. We know that more information exists before us that we can perceive with our simple senses. I can't view AM radio waves, but my radio can interpret them into air compressions which I can distinguish. I can't directly observe the Casimir effect, but it's still there operating on every moment of my existence in subtle ways.

When we observe phenomena that we cannot explain, especially those exhibiting "intelligent" characteristics, we instantly attempt to integrate it into the wider sense of our system of beliefs and experiences. You see lights in NASA video footage (the tether video comes to mind) and see proof of aliens. A Pentecostal may view the same video and see proof of angels. I look at the video and see scientific phenomena that have yet to be accurately described or quantified. Unfortunately NASA ignored the issue, already knew what was going on and knew it to be inconsequential, or is suppressing evidence. As a result of the fact you are educated individuals, you begin to question the questions as well as the responses given. The only thing you can take away from such incidences as fact is that NASA is an imperfect scientific agency in desperate need of drastic reforms.

If docs and witnesses are so prized, why are folks like William Cooper not raised to positions of sainthood amongst UFOlogists? Because William Cooper, in the end, realized he was being used by TPTB to distract the intelligent from the truth by spreading UFO disinformation. It doesn't fit the UFOlogy canon and all those reputations and book deals are now shot.

Are we alone? Probability says "no". Have ETs visited Earth? Probability says "no". However probability is not absolute and should always been challenged when faced with new evidence. There's ample suggestion in historical texts and inscriptions that seem to indicate that the small probability of visitation may have occurred.

This, however, is not proof. It is only facts that can be strung together in a theory that cannot be tested.

Why do all paper trails and FOIA requests only ever end in endless documents or in "eye witness" accounts... never in "touch-it-feel-it-proof"? Because there is none. As modern chemistry has created a more accurate judicial process through fingerprinting, DNA analysis, GSR testing and metallurgical analysis, none of these sciences can be applied to the "UFO question".

The argument is then presented that TPTB are "withholding evidence" or "spreading disinformation", which has always sounded to me like Creationists suggesting that dinosaurs and fossil records were placed on Earth to test the faithful.

Perhaps the greatest thing to come out of the flap over October 14th was the forced re-evaluation of the positions that are so vehemently espoused on these forums. If this is perceived by you to be a “blow to the investigation of UFOs” then I suggest you are one who could most benefit from this event.

In the spirit of a good skeptic... Please... Prove me wrong.




posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 12:25 PM
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I agree with much of what you say but I do think rational consideration of intelligent life beyond our own doesnt deserved to be thrown in the pot with religion.

For me religion is a wholly and proven illogical and irrational thing. We would have to assume one god created us all and yet his religions and teachings conflict and lead to war. Gods "holy city" of Jerusalem is a historical blood bath.

Ive heard all the claims that "god works in mysterious ways" and to be honest I think its all rediculous. Why on Earth would an enlightened omnipotent being create the murderous scandal of humanity and why would they sit idly by and do nothing about it? If such a god existed I would neither trust nor worship them because id have serious and grave concerns over its morality. To have created all of this god would require intelligence and reason and yet the actions of god indicate a lack of both or more accurately as far as im concerned a logical and reasonable proof of its non existence. Religion is a human concept, a mode of control, a mode of self identification and nothing more than that. If god ever existed then it died or moved on a long time ago.

Now UFOs are far easier for me to tolerate. Aliens would have predicated interest or motivation towards humanity, their reasons and actions could be anything. Aggressive, food based, science study based, whatever depending on the species, its stage of eveolution and its natural instincts we couldnt begin to "expect" an alien life to treat us or interact with us in any one manner, it would all boil down to the species, its sociology, psychology and evolution and how it sees us. Much in the same way we have behaved erratically when meeting new culures and species.

Given the possible age of the Universe and the age of humans, also the sheer number of stars and systems I think I can be categorically confident we are NOT the only or even the oldest intelligent life in the great black beyond.

Whether or not they ahve been here? Who knows?

Both possiblitites contain equal logic. When Humans learned to travel the seas we explored, lookd for new lands and new things even in our rpimitive days so if a species became interstellar im pretty sure they would do the same. Would they come to Earth? Who knows?

Again many factors would come into consideration. At that point in evolution they wouldnt just pick a shiny star and head off, they probably would have advanced telescopic technologies, space study centres, science groups etc. Im sure they would go through a complex process of selecting their destinations. If they were only a solar system of two removed from us then maybe they are more likely to have found us, if they are twenty solar systems removed they are more likely to have found other planets with life and are still occupied studying those id guess.

Would they show themselves? No, I doubt it, at the very least not until all studies into our biology, psychology, sociology and liguistics had been carried out and even then it would most likely be some form of comittee decision based on the possible implications for both species. Assuming we are so important they will pop from the ether and shout "hi there humans" is a very human ego based concept, we might well be little more to them than apes are to us.

Again its depends. Do they value this planet? Do they value any minerals we have, do we have something they want and do they still have military and political bodies in their heirarchy which might mediate aggressive action to take what they want? We dont know. Do they fear our destructive natures? Again, its too much to speculate.

Alien existence is probable.

Intelligent species existing (plural) who are superior to us, probable. (i base this on the idea that our solar system is very young compared to the universe itself and humanity even younger still.

Have they been here? Possible.

Are they here and studying us? Possible.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 12:53 PM
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I appreciate the well considered response. I don't believe that there can be argument for the probability of life in the universe. The more we investigate how life evolves and exists, the more likely that seems to become. The argument then becomes "have they come here," and that gets murky as all hell. I am one who thinks that there is enough historical documentation and evidence (going back 6k years or more) that it requires a little consideration. It only takes seconds to whip up a photoshop image of a UFO... it takes weeks to carve one into stone. Human nature would indicate that it had to be pretty significant for such effort to be expended. Does that mean it's intelligent aliens? No. It means that there's something, and it's worth looking into. It's the blind acceptance of gratuitous conclusions that I have a problem with.

I submit the following as an example: it's easier to dismiss Sitchen as a kook, or accept it as gospel, than it is to learn cuneiform and re-translate the cylinder scrolls for yourself. Scientific method is the reproduction of methodology that results in identical conclusions. Who has verified what Sitchen translates? Why is it not discussed as vehemently?

My point could be distilled as follows: a canon and dogma has developed in mainstream UFOlogy that has become analogous to a religion, minus the holy wars.

I'll also concede that my motivation is driven by the proliferation of posts in the now 280 page Oct 14th thread that are akin to "burn the witch". I submit that channeling has an equal historical and factual significance as UFOlogy, including the much touted government documentation and independent scientific research.

Does that mean that I throw my intellectual hat in with one camp or the other? No, because definitive "the sky is blue" proof has never been submitted for either theory, period. This Oct 14th event was a fantastic litmus test for channeling phenomenon, as well as a revealing look into the community of people that subscribe to it. Channeling, or at least this woman, gets one mark in the Snake Oil column.

However this cannot excuse what seems to be the "mainstream" point of view of the UFOlogists represented on this forum when discussing the topic. Even those with thousands of ATS/BTS points and all kinds of little banners and kudos in their sidebar displayed a remarkable closedmindedness to even the possibility of this being legitimate. I'll dive in there and dig out the names if it's that important.

If one were truly intellectually honest, why discount any new information regardless of the source, especially when a measurable event is presented?

Why not simply wait for the event to transpire, or not, and THEN draw a conclusion?

Perhaps the "blow to the investigation of UFOs" was the exposure of exactly how closedminded that which is represented as mainstream UFOlogy really is.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:15 PM
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If we are on the Goodchild incident id base my position more on her text and he actions both of which run contrary to logic and reason.

I said before looking at the wording of the "message" that it just doesnt add up.

Terms like "3 of your twenty four hour periods" just dont hold water to me, yes the way of presenting does indicate alien wording; more accurately it indicates a human perception of how an alien might speak.

We can safely assume that an alien race which understands 24 hours knows what a day is, this is evidenced later when they use the word "days" just to reinforce that. So why not just say "3 days" or "72 hours" neither of which are overly alien in structure but both of which are logical normal speech and im pretty sure any advanced race engaged in such communication would have considered its wording and speech to us very carefully before giving it out. An alien wouldnt be deliberately trying to sound alien, is the basis, only a human wishing to deepen the "alien" perception would speak like that.

I also come to the repeated us of the word "shall". Shall is old english, obsolete in modern structure and unless our "federation" friends studied English language from its roots (thus indicating they are fluent in the language) they would not choose to use obsolete old English and certainly not use it WRONGLY. Shall had a very specific application in old English and this womans abuse of the form is wholly incorrect. I might add its very much in line with how most modern people choosing to try employ the word use it, wrongly because they do not understand old english or the correct use of the word.

I draw interest to this because "shall" and its correct use were once considered a defining art in the ability to speak english correctly which only English people had the mastery of, not Americans, Scots, Irish or anyone else. Its a very unique and intersting word which in the modern day is often just used as a sub for "will" which is incorrect.

I find it interesting that this alien species chooses to use an absolete word with the same understanding of an Australian in the modern age, coincidence? I very much doubt it.

There are further textual indicators of fraud in that message which clearly indicate it came from a modern human not an alien.

Beyond that she seems to lack prudence and reason. Any reasoning mind would surely have considered more than one possibility here?
Anyoen who gets such a message and automatically says "ahh well must be true" is seriously lacking the capability to reason and think logically. It is just one of several possiblities. Goodchild jumped head first into a highly unsustainable position and by that act she leaves her thinking open to great questions. Her ability to reason cannot be trusted and therefore her ability to maintain perspective and distance and correctly evaluate a position also comes into question im afraid.

For me she willingly and knowingly created this message by her own hand and always new she was faking, but thats just my view. i believe she was probably paid as some form of media advertising hype to still up the UFO phenomenon into the greater public interest.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:24 PM
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reply to post by cogburn
 


There are many New Age UFO sites out there, and there are many Christian messages by some of the contactees/abductees. The OP is correct to point out that a lot of Ufology is more like a religion than a science. Many people believe what the channelers say, or defend the contactees without regard to any kind of evidence.

The UFO should first be proven as a nuts and bolts/extradimensional (or whatever type of craft) first. The aliens must be proven to exist and are visiting us. After that, we can have the spiritual/religious discussions.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:43 PM
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i would have to say..
after the blossom goodchild oct 14th accident...
it has basically put a big loser X on a lot's forehead's as to maybe aliens do exist and watching us.
It showed me how many people are blinded by ignorance to every word people say.
apparently all it take's is maybe 4 or 5 people to spread the word of a person as the gospel..
sure enough hundred on thousand flocked watched out side ect....
just look at youtube on oct14th...people went nut's.

so to me it set ufo's credibility back 100 year's..whats a ufo? lol
Because if people can swear that goodchild woman was talking to aliens via channeling .....ufo's aint real folk's lol
and follow her every word as if jesus christ spoke it lol

spooky if you ask me lol



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:47 PM
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I must say I like that discussion, and for the most important part agree with it.

There is something in it that's been approached but I think, not enough:

Comparing ufology and religion may seem a really bad decision. However, given the present amount of debate, sometimes very heated debate, given the amount of dis- or misinformation, etc., there is a big problem. The problem is that there is no more faith in the given evidence, it has become nearly entirely a matter of "believe it or not". Faked proofs, real evidence used as fake, counter declarations, denying and ridicule, tweaked images, interpretations from supposedly credible sources that are themselves faked, used wrongly, or incomplete, etc.

If, let's say, tomorrow, I take a real good picture of a UFO, I mean a real one: one that has landed in my garden, one inside which I've been allowed to enter by its occupants (to whom I talked to, by the way), one that I saw flying, ... That one picture, or those ones, will far beyond doubt be the absolute proof. My story will be the absolute proof.

Yet, there will be people who will spend time and effort to debunk it, and they will be successful, leaving me frustrated and angry, and most probably silent again forever. They will prove that I'm unreliable, that the pictures are fake, modify them or the story even, etc. They will succeed! There are people who don't want that to happen.

On the other hand, I could as well open a new website, call me some funny name, and start telling the whole world how much I know. In a matter of days, I will gather a crowd of millions of followers. (makes me think of some bearded dude, about 20 centuries ago...
)

Would I be that alien, I tell you, I would not land on this earth, or at least I'd do it so that I can never be seen!



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:48 PM
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reply to post by beforetime
 


Perhaps UFOlogy should be set back 100 years. At the very least you can call UFOlogy a "movement", and one it would seem in need of reformation.

I don't want to turn this into a Goodchild discussion so much as a critique of the discussion the event spawned.

It's not "deny ignorance" so much as "reaffirm your own by denying someone else's".



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 01:57 PM
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reply to post by cogburn
 


There is plenty of physical evidence of UFOs out there, and many of the best cases have it. There are so many documents found out through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that Project Moon Dust was found by Sgt Clifford Stone. The Air Force had a group trained to collect downed satellite and other craft, whether it was ours, the Soviets or "other". After that was found out, the Air Force changed the name to another classified name. If there was no UFOs, there would not be a need to have a classified group collect them.

Project Moon Dust was activated for the Kecksburg PA crash, and it is documented by Kevin Randle, one of the few UFO researchers who still reports it as it is.

Maybe Ufology should be split into two or more groups: The nuts and bolts looking for physical traces and other types of evidence, and the religious/spiritual type where people believe everything without the need for evidence.

Right now the UFO community needs to go the science route to prove that we are and have been visited by alien technologies. Until we do, we will be laughed at and told to put our tin foil hats back on and go back to our parents basements.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:00 PM
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reply to post by cogburn
 


Cogburn ,I think it is unfair to lump organised religion and other 'non provable belief systems' in with the subject of UFOs.
Whilst its fair to say there is no unequivocable proof in the public domain,there still exists a great deal of objective evidence that substantiates the UFO/OVNI subject-a lot more than can be said for organised religion,astrology etc...
There is some quite interesting information on this thread:
www.abovetopsecret.com...
Cheers Karl



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:10 PM
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Ufology is not a cult, there are cults within it. Serious UFO researchers are not of the GFL following variety.

The cults like the GFL followers are cults because their announcements and claims have been dismissed most and the ones who remain do so through faith, not proof.

Ufology is about the study of UFO's, their origins and creators, be it down here or out there. It is about evidence, science, deduction and hard work, not about channelling or messages. You don't have to buy CD's or books, it's almost free.

I don't count any UFO based cult as part of Ufology. They are a cult, a group unto themselves.

I'd like to see Internos take on this.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:13 PM
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I think the reason people are debunked more than anything if they set themselves up for it.

I saw a UFO (it was unidentified and flying and an object) when I was 11. What I wont tell you is that it was an alien or even that it was real.

My mind sticks to reason and to discount the highly possible idea that it was a youthful hallucination would be unreasonable. From an unreasonable position people have every right to attack that claim if I made it.

So I accept, yes, it could very well and reasonably have been hallucination, no arguments.

Outside of that I would also suggest that it could also have been something real (government craft, alien craft, whatever). To suggest that isnt possible is unreasonable also. Theres no conclusive proof or understanding of hallucination any more than UFOs so both positions deserve equal consideration. One is no more possible or probable than the other. If I wanted to be very direct I could suggest that infact UFO theory holds more logic and support than hallucination does. Science has had a long time to study hallucination and come up with proof and understanding of it, they have had direct access to subjects and resources with which to work from, and yet they still havent come up with anything. Id hardly call that conclusive of anything except maybe decreasing the liklihood of hallucination as an explanation.

So the possiblity of it being a genuine UFO is supportable with logic and anyone choosing to discount it puts themselves on very weak ground and shows a severe lack of reasoning skills.

People couldnt point to "evidence" of hallucination throughout history. I might answer "what evidence", stating that someone seeing something you dont believe real is automatically "hallucination" is NOT evidence any more than stating the contrary. Neither side can claim the lionshare of support for its position.

History has "assumed" hallucination to be real but based on what? A failure or unwillingness to believe that the sight was genuine, because thats all I can see proing hallucination and if thats the best you have why bother talking about logic and science at all?

There is basis in science for the existence of hallucination. Equally there is basis in science for intelligent alien life. Im not going to toss away either possibility without good cause to do so.

If the sight was real then it was impressive. I was only 200 yards from it and it was low cruising over a field, a cigar shaped ship, silent running and when it took of to the horizon it did so with extreme speed and manouverability that modern ships dont even come close to.

Maybe I did hallucinate it but why and how? What would make my mind create such a random event when im walking up the hill on my way to the local youth club at 11 years old? I certainly dont ahve a habit of hallucinating so why this "freak" event at that moment without cause? Its not a position I find any more conclusive myself.

So if you do see a UFO then just be reasonable, consider all sides of the coin and dont rule out what logic and reason doesnt rule out and really from there its hard to call anyone a crackpot because you are being very reasonable and showing the capability to digest and analyse from a strong position of mind. People are more likely to trust that position than one which jumps off to a conclusion without reason or cause to do so. Thats my feeling anyway



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 03:29 PM
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Originally posted by Sendran
Ufology is about the study of UFO's, their origins and creators, be it down here or out there. It is about evidence, science, deduction and hard work, not about channelling or messages. You don't have to buy CD's or books, it's almost free.
With due respect, your answer highlights part of my point quite nicely.

"...their origins and creators..."

The very statement itself belies a supposition that what you are witnessing is some how manufactured by an intelligence and completely devoid of natural causes. I submit no such evidence has been presented.

Again, UFO/OVNI are indisputable. It happens. There are quite literally hundreds of thousands of photos, testimony and documentation. All you need to do is decide how credible a source you're willing to trust and there is someone of that caliber with credible, if not substantiated, testimony and/or evidence.

What is disputable is the origins and nature of the phenomena witnessed.

This is not even to ignore such things as abductees or crop-circles... However each topic that is being investigated requires some modicum of scientific reasoning and approach. Abductees, if unsubstantiated by third-party evidence, turn into character questions. Those incidents supported by third-party evidence, such as implants, rarely if ever show anything that is not so far beyond our current level of common technology that it couldn't be man-made. Crop-circles have yet to convey any meaningful information that could not be created by a man or machine on Earth. Occam's razor comes to mind... is it easier to accept that crop-circles are man-made or that some hitherto unknown intelligence created them?

I'm not saying "SHOW ME PROOF"... what I am saying ... what I am beginning to be insisting ... is that the shining lights of UFOlogy (of which ATS is one) start some much needed house cleaning.

If the theories are indeed as accurate as claimed, then no amount of re-visitation or re-analysis of the facts should disprove it.

For the record, the GFL folks are a fringe of a fringe of a fringe. This is not what I refer to as mainstream UFOlogy. The quantity of websites, books and YouTube videos dedicated to the subject doesn't speak for its credibility, only the amount of time on the hands of those that profess that belief system.

At the risk of being argumentative, is there a real UFOlogist in the house? Someone who's research amounts to more than supposition and opinion?

Too bad the subject is so vast and my lone voice isn't enough of a clarion call for all parties to lay their cards on the table. It's really what this ... hobby ... needs.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 03:45 PM
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There are some credible peole in the field. BUFORA for example if I were to cite one manage to retain a very reasoning perspective on things, keep themselves down to Earth and are quite good at debunking when debunking is whats required.

They do some very decent investigative work, interviews, and studies on cases and they arent shy of stating when they feel somethings are just hog wash.

That kind of approach and research is very worthy of the field of study and its a shame good honest study is always burdened with the weight of garbage and tin foil hat stuff like BG to name just one modern day crackpot.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 04:18 PM
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reply to post by silver6ix
 


Silver6ix~good post,it is also pertinent to point out that many 'UFO cynics' who do absolutely nothing to objectively educate themselves about the topic (and in fact pour scorn and derision onto it ), are often just a mirror image of those people who think 'everything' is a UFO.

I'm not talking about true sceptics here,just those who are wilfully ignorant/obstinate about the subject;do absolutely nothing to cultivate informed,balanced opinions and just attempt to shoehorn in their own existing preconceptions onto incidents,often blatantly ignoring factual discrepencies,glaring contradictions and trained eyewitness testimony.

I think these folks do Ufology a great disservice by superimposing their own lazy prejudice and fuzzy logic onto events.
They often flippantly dismiss important cases,are not rational,analytical or dispassionate and rarely bring anything to the table other than cynicism.

Isn't it time,these UFO cynics were treated with the same disdain and indifference as the wild eyed 'true beleivers' who think everything is a UFO?



[edit on 02/10/08 by karl 12]



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 04:53 PM
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Point taken, I should have stated more clearly the unknown origin of the UFO's to include natural phenomenon.

Regards to the "real Ufologists", I think most people get into it because of desire, so the best Ufologists would be the skeptics, those with no want or desire for there to be anything. But there again, some skeptics don't want to see anything for whatever reason, and we are back to square one. Complete impartiality and objectivity is needed for the "Ultimate Ufologist" (maybe a lycra/spandex costume?
). I think here at ATS we may have a few, maybe yourself.

I don't think the evidence we see is enough, for me anyway. I'd need to meet the people involved, more can be gained from them than studying images or video.

The followers of GFL don't have too much time on their hands, they choose to spend it on Fraudchild because once again, someone came along and promised them an answer to all their problems, and they believed it, they wanted it to be true. I know what you mean, I just think the followers get a bad rap, they were used by Fraudchild and her con artist friends.

P.S. I think our signatures display our stances quite well!


[edit on 15/10/2008 by Sendran]

[edit on 15/10/2008 by Sendran]



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 05:40 PM
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Originally posted by karl 12
reply to post by silver6ix
 



Isn't it time,these UFO cynics were treated with the same disdain and indifference as the wild eyed 'true beleivers' who think everything is a UFO?

[edit on 02/10/08 by karl 12]


I agree very much with that statement. I find closed minded people very hard to bother with. Anyone who says the whole subject is impossible jus doesnt have the will or the reasoning powers to cope with anything outside the mundane and established. If humanity had relied on those people we would still be living in caves.

Most of the great minds, the people who established the Earth were round, that the planets were orbiting the sun not the other way round, to name but two key evolutions of thinking, were in their time branded either heretics or lunatics, thats the nature of dicsovery.

The sad truth is that the majority of people simply arent emotionally or mentally equipped for studying anything which isnt already steeped in fact. Those kinds fo thinkers serve their purpose doing the dog and bone work once a theory becomes accepted they can trot off and make advances in the field. Taking the step from the known into the uncertain has always been something not so many people were equipped for sadly.

When confronted by that which we cant understand or even that which we fear its too easy to pretend it doesnt exist, tag it impossible and close your eyes. Logic and reason play very little part in the equation.

Many people will tel you something is "obviously" impossible and yet when challenged to further explain why so "obviously" they fail miserably to deliver anything more than stigma and mumbo jumbo thats as bad or worse than any tin hat wearing theorist could come up with.

I know many such people who will automatically give the response that alien intelligence is a rediculous idea and as yet I havent been able to fathom a single logical reason for that position. Its no more rediculous than sea life when you think about it.

Those on the middle ground trying to look objectively are pinned on both sides by overt fantasists and terrified skeptics, which makes sorting through the mish mash of lies, hoaxes and fantasy a very tricky task.

Its a very sad state of affairs that even now theres no majorly funded effort to study and elaborate excusively on these areas as im sure there is much to be learned. In an ideal world such studies would have access to moon missions, space research, all the data and facts to do these studies and try sort out the truth from the lies, sadly that day is a long way away.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 06:54 PM
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cogburn, I think to a certain degree you are correct, there are many parrallels. However You are just seeing human behaviour(probably at its worst in some cases) playing out how it always does when searching for "Truth" and "Belief", be it extraterrestrial or spiritual.

When people develop a viewpoint, most of them cling to it desperately, will often defend it aggressively and will attack competing viewpoints. Eventually when our viewpoints become untennable, we will change to those we feel are superior, and the cycle starts again. Or in some cases, viewpoints will splinter, sending their followers in other directions, just to come back and attack their origins.

These viewpoints are defended by our chosen champions & sacred cows(be they saints, prophets, ufologists or conspiracy theorists), they have their bulwarks of evidence(Documents(FOIA & Bible), testimony, relics, photos & stigmata). We have our holy grounds(Vatican City, Area 51) and then we have our most notable of notables, the heretics(Witches, Agents of satan, demons, atheists, skeptics, debunkers and so on) and we pursue our heretics just as surely as the church did in the past, except we only burn them with scorn and accusations of being a government disinformation agent.

Now this being said, many of these same parallels can be applied to any investigative endeavour that we have. So yes, we are cultish in our tendencies, but probably no more than any other "ology" or "ism" where people form a belief in their findings, and an absolute knowledge that they are righteous in that belief. Science has cultish tendencies in the defence of many theories and laws(Thou shalt not question newton ever!), as well as endeavours such as archaeology(thou shalt not question Khufu's inscription!) and even political science(Its wrong to be George W Bush).

Please keep in mind folks, that this to a certain degree is a generalism. There are ALWAYS individuals in a group who behave against the norm of those around them. We all like to think we are that individual, so ill just reaffirm that yes, YOU are special, YOU are different, YOU are unique. Just like all the other folks.



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 11:27 PM
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Hey I just want to give props to everyone in this thread.


Reading such well thought-out and articulate responses is really refreshing after all the pointless rhetoric that's been stinking up the UFO joint lately.


But really I think this topic extends beyond UFOs and applies to human nature in general:

From the day we started walking around upright and contemplating our own self-awareness us hairless apes have been plagued by the question of what exactly it is we're all doing here in the first place.

This question is so important and daunting that many people over time have simply refused to even accept "I don't know" as an option. Instead they apply whatever beliefs they find the most comforting and refuse anyone or anything that comes along to challenge them.

UFOlogy fits right in line with this mentality because in theory it contains many insights to these fundamental questions, but in reality those insights just lead to more "I don't knows".

This is completely unacceptable to the hardcore believers and skeptics alike. So instead one side fills the gaps with Galactic Federations of Love and Grand Destinies for the Human Race, while the other quickly tears them down to re-establish their intellectual superiority, and simultaneously dodge the fact there might be things in this world they can't explain.

(Ultimately, both sides are just as blind and useless as the other)



posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 11:54 PM
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Originally posted by Sendran

I don't count any UFO based cult as part of Ufology. They are a cult, a group unto themselves.


I was going to enter my humble opinion into this debate, however there's no real point because Sendran has already put it so eloquently.

WTG Mate! - You saved me writers cramp!

IRM



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