JOHN KEEL: NOT AN AUTHORITY ON ANYTHING

August 31, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (9)

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This creature looks familiar; we’ve seen something like it in Figures 3 and 5.  Does that mean that it’s the same, or that the artist has a limited range?  It’s crouching over a bug, which seems to be running in circles, like the being in Figure 6.  Knowing what kind of a bug it is would help with our interpretation.  It might not be running after all: it could be a water beetle, swimming in a pond; or a spider, spinning a web.  Or that most significant of insects, the scarab.  Whatever it is, the crouching creature seems to like it, and the heart-shaped flower is a sweet touch.

August 29, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (8)

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This picture is different: it shows some sort of writing, presumably the language of whoever was contacting the contactees.  There seem to be four words: two letters, three letters, two letters, three letters.  And there are four symbols; the equal signs indicate there’s a correlation between the words and symbols.  At first I took the words for garbled solfeggio, but the symbols don’t seem to fit.

Perhaps the symbols are meant to resemble cuneiform.  That would certainly fit the Mesopotamian theme I’ve alluded to here.

August 25, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (7)

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In the sixth picture, we again have two scenes.  The top one shows somebody, or something, who seems to be running in circles, while another sits under a tree.  Maybe the Reptilian, or whatever it is, from the fourth picture is still at its post.

At the bottom, we have two very sketchy figures, so sketchy that I have trouble interpreting them.  The one on the right may be a tree; nearby is a campfire, and possibly a fish.  The other figure seems to be running; it has the antennae we’ve seen in the earlier pictures.  That may be a hill next to or behind it.

In case number has any significance in the psychic wellspring informing these images, I’ll point out that we have four semicircles, a campfire of four logs, and four figures.  In the top scene we have four hills and five trees.

August 24, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (6)

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The fifth drawing is unusual, in that it combines with the eleventh drawing to form one larger picture.  If we’re meant to see a sequence, or narrative (as the numbering implies), then this may be a scene that we return to later.  Or, perhaps, the right side is the focus now, and the left side later.

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We’re inside something, indicated by a rough semicircle, and an even sketchier line at the back.  There’s also a ladder leading out of it, with seven rungs (if number is part of the meaning here).  It could be the inside of a UFO, which would make this picture the only one with an explicit reference to UFO culture.  However, it could also be a dome, arch, or cave.  If we want to continue the Mesopotamian interpretation (which is tastier with at least a grain of salt), I can point out that the Sumerians saw the universe as a closed dome — as did, of course, the authors of Genesis, among others.

We have four beings here.  Unless my apophenia is acting up inappropriately, I recognize the couple on the right as the first and fourth creatures from the third drawing.  One seems to be female (breasts, skirt, heels), and may have a baby on her back.  She also has curious pronged antennae (and different ones from the figure in the third drawing).  The creature next to her looks more like an anthropomorphized animal (a bear, maybe?) than a human, and is handling luggage; it may be male, and I read him as the husband.  The couple on the left don’t look like any of the beings we’ve seen before.  Since we’ve been told that the pictures came from “contactees,” it’s easy to see these two beings as aliens; or, at any rate, as the ones doing the contacting.  If so, they’re contacting a family.

August 22, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (5)

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The fourth picture seems to show some kind of humanoid lizard.  This may take us into the realm of David Icke’s reptilians, the Sumerian Annunaki.  Icke didn’t start spreading his ideas until long after 1967; but even back in the ’40s, Robert Ernst Dickhoff and others were circulating reports of giant man-eating reptiles from Venus, frozen in underground caverns in Antarctica.  Reptiles have a certain fascination for the human psyche.  As you may notice, I’ve mentioned some Mesopotamian connections in my notes; but they may simply come from the fact that Sumerian myth, like most myth, grows from the collective unconscious.

But is this really a reptile?  The drawing is so sketchy, that the brain instinctively fills in details to find a pattern.  I can even see a face in the scribbled shrubbery, if it’s shrubbery; but, as a longtime Fortean, I know that we often see patterns, both visual and narrative, where none exist.  Apophenia is inevitable with images like these.

Could this also show the Garden of Eden (also often placed in Mesopotamia), with the Serpent waiting by the tree?

August 21, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (4)

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The third picture contains two drawings.  In the first, we have a rising or setting sun again: it’s on the left this time.  It looks to me as if the stag has been decapitated, and the head is leaping from the hill.  Perhaps those lines under the head are the body; it’s hard to tell.  Decapitation is certainly a loaded motif.  If the stag does indeed represent the father, there has been a change in the family unit.

In the lower image, we have four creatures.  Since Jung identified number as the conduit between the conscious and the unconscious, I’ll point out that there are many associations with four: the seasons, the Gospels, etc.  Four or forty was also the number associated with Enki, the “Great Stag” of Sumerian myth.  The creatures are really too sketchy to identify.  The third seems to have antennae, and also to be decapitated.  The fourth is clearly a bird: birds show up in other drawings in the series as well.  They look as if they’re traveling somewhere, and it’s in the direction of that sun in the image above.  Are they going east or west?  Given the preceding images of a foundling and a totem, perhaps we can see this as a family.

August 20, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (3)

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The second picture shows the head of a horned animal.  We could read it as a totem, and maybe even lean toward the Freudian notion that it represents the father.

There are many horned gods and deified stags in mythology and folklore.  There is, for example, the Sumerian water-god Enki, “The Great Stag.”  Jung identified the stag as a symbol of Christ, and of the alchemical Mercury.  All of which may only mean that it’s a potent image; but it is usually tagged as male, which may be significant after that foundling in the first image.

There’s also a sun, and a mound, or hill.  We can’t tell if the sun is rising or setting.

I showed these drawings to the cartoonist Mark Newgarden; and this one reminded him of a cartoon album from 1931, The Stag at Eve.  The resemblance is probably coincidental, but I can’t help but wonder if the other pictures have cartoon counterparts as well.

Wild Hart

August 18, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (2)

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I suspect that these pictures were produced by automatic drawing; they have the fluid vagueness of dream imagery, and an unsettling psychological charge.  Some of the traditional techniques of dream interpretation may help unriddle them.  Before psychiatry, dreams were usually seen as either prophecies or allegories; Freud (to oversimplify) took them as individual, expressing the wishes of the dreamer; Jung saw more a yearning for wholeness, expressed in a common symbolism.  Since these are ostensibly collective images, a Jungian approach may be more appropriate; so I’ll set down a few myths and symbols that may be pertinent.

The first picture (there are twelve in the booklet) shows a bearded figure with antennae, studying a baby in a basket.  It recalls Moses in the bulrushes, of course; but the Biblical story is only one example of a common story.

Perseus was put to sea in a chest; Karna was set afloat in a basket on the Ganges.  One of the earliest examples is the Akkadian emperor Sargon, the conqueror of Sumeria, born of a priestess and cast into the river in a basket.  Many other heroes had a similar beginning: Cyrus, Romulus and Remus, Oedipus, Paris, and Heracles were all left on mountains as infants.  Usually, the hero-to-be is abandoned by one family, and found by another (generally, a prince is rescued by paupers; Moses reverses the formula).

Given all that, are we to read this as a human/alien interchange?  Is a child being rescued by a non-human?  Freud (who was particularly interested in this myth) pointed out that the basket probably symbolizes a womb; and that, crucially, the family is disrupted.

What about those antennae?  Could they be cartoonish shorthand for alien?  Possibly; but royalty did wear horned headdresses in some cultures, including in Mesopotamia.

Other traditional interpretations of a baby in a dream include a dependency on others, or a desire for children.  Sometimes, the baby is said to represent the dreamer.

August 17, 2011

Drawings by Silent Contactees (1)

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I’d like to post here a booklet of drawings that John Keel circulated in 1967.  I’m curious if anyone knows anything about them.  Has anyone out there seen them before?

“Specialized Research,” stamped on the back of the booklet, was the name that John gave to his investigations at the time.  “Silent contactees” were people who claimed paranormal experiences, but didn’t publicize them; some of them wrote to John because they thought he could explain something that they couldn’t.  These experiences weren’t necessarily related to UFOs, but included channeling, phone and electronic interference, and creature sightings.

John collected information from these sources, and then compared it to find patterns.  He sometimes concluded that a report was verified if it came from more than one source.  This wasn’t an infallible method; it couldn’t always preclude hoaxing or lying.  Repetition of details could also simply mean that information came from a collective wellspring of symbolism; which could be significant for reports that shade off into hypnagogic or hypnopompic states, visions, or channeling.  And that may be pertinent for these drawings, which seem more like dream images, or illustrations of myths, than the usual sketches done by UFO witnesses.

John didn’t note who drew these.  It’s likely, though, that Jaye Paro was one of them.  She was one of his most active sources at this time, producing a rich stream of high strangeness almost daily, including drawings and channeled messages; also, the booklet was inside an envelope from her.  However, it’s possible that John sent it to her for her reaction; and she then returned it.  The drawings are all done on typing paper with a blue ballpoint pen.  I also found a photocopy, so I suppose John did send them to fellow researchers.

It’s worth mentioning that there was some ambivalent sexual tension between John and Jaye.  He noted that she was single, afraid of childbirth, and would be attractive if she lost weight.  She told him (in July 1967) that she was in contact with androids who said that she should marry John and have children.  It went no further than that; but I mention it since the pictures sometimes show families and children.  If Jaye was indeed producing them, that may be part of the story.

I assume it’s okay now to show these drawings; John wanted to keep them secret at the time to see if other witnesses produced anything similar.  But that was long ago…

August 10, 2011

Mary Hyre on the Silver Bridge Disaster

Filed under: Uncategorized — admin @ 6:32 pm

Many people know the Silver Bridge disaster only from John’s account of it in The Mothman Prophecies.  Here is Mary Hyre’s remembrance of it, from a special “Silver Bridge Memorial Section” of the Athens Messenger, Dec. 14, 1969, two years afterward.

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