Are UFOs Real? A Sea Change?
SR 1172 UFO 2
“UFOs are Real!” exclaimed ufologist Stanton Friedman in lecture after lecture already when I was a child until he passed away in 2019. By “real” Stan meant that aboard UFOs are alien visitors from other planets. The evidence for the reality of extraterrestrial visitors is greater than any proof required to render a courtroom verdict, he said repeatedly.
The problem Stan and every other ufologist confronted was the “giggle factor.” Those schooled in the dogmas of science would giggle whenever the subject of extraterrestrial visitation would be raised. Project Bluebook of the U.S. Air Force from 1953 to 1969 sought to “debunk” reports of unidentified flying objects.
Is there a sea change underway? Over the last half decade, the scientific community as well as the military seem to be taking the invasion of terrestrial air space by unknowns much more seriously. I belong to a fine newly founded organization, the Scientific Coalition for UAP Studies (SCU), which is only one of many that are sprouting up in this post “giggle factor” era. Harvard astronomer Avi Loeb, similarly, is guiding the Galileo Project to investigate what’s happening in our atmosphere.
Sea Change? You might take a look at “How the Pentagon learned to start worring and investigate UFOs.” Then, see the report from ODNI (Office of the Director of National Intelligence), “Preliminary Assessment: Unidentified Aerial Phenomena.” Finally, please take a look at a recent SCU Press Release, “SCU’s Response to the ODNI UAP Report.” What scientists want is data. Might Uncle Sam provide the kind of data that scientists could use for their research?
If anything, Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), formerly Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO), are amazing. They fly at hypersonic speeds with no sonic boom. They turn at 90 degree angles, with G forces that would crush the body of any sentient being on board. Such UAP are sighted by human eyes, radar, infrared sensors, and other instruments simultaneously. UFOs defy the laws of nature as Albert Einstein layed down. Are UFOs real? Looks that way.
Physicist Michio Kaku rides the waves of the sea change among scientists. No longer a victim of the “giggle factor,” Kaku takes the UFO phenomenon seriously. “Multiple sightings. Multiple modes. That’s the gold standard” for scientists now, Kaku told Joe Rogan. Are UFOs real? Well, they’re real enough to warrant scientific investigation.
Evangelical theologian Roger Olson decries the giggle factor. Why? Because it’s evidence that scientific dogma is too restrictive. “Western science (as an academic community) operates on the basis of certain ‘dogmas’ (or unquestionable presuppositions) and TENDS to punish scientists who dare to question them.” A materialist ideology has closed too many scientific doors, shutting the laboratory into inflexible prejudice. There are too many scientific dogmas that prevent materialist ideologues from opening their minds to more subtle dimensions of reality. Might we say that Michio Kaku opens a window to let fresh air into the otherwise stuffy scientific parlor?
Are UFOs a matter of National Security?
If the U.S. military is ready to shoot down a spy baloon, we would expect Pentagon apoplexy at sighting a UAP. Might an unidentifiable craft come from China? Russia? The NRA?
In a previous Patheos post, Are Alien Scientists the Real Gods?, I tracked the U.S. Congressional dialogue leading up to the 2023 national budget. Because UAP are a matter of national security, certain parties argued, Uncle Sam should cough up money to support UFO research. The result was that the Department of Defense took over responsibility for UAP investigation without any promise to make findings available to the public. Aftera all, a matter of national security requires secrecy, right?
Now, there’s one hole in the bottom of the boat. In the National Defense Authorization Act for 2023 there’s a whistle blower clause. Maybe some whistle blower will leak what the government elite wants to control regarding UAP knowledge. What might leak out?
Are UFOs really piloted by extraterrestrial intelligence?
Are UFOs really piloted by extraterrestrial intelligence? Now, that’s the exciting question! I certainly hope that at least some flying saucers are piloted by visitors from extraterrestrial civiliations. I want to invite aliens to my next barbecue.
To date, there is no empirical evidence that life on other planets exists. Yet, given that so many exoplanets in the habital zone exist in the Milky Way, we have reason to hope that we have space neighbors.
AFTER CONTACT, how will religious people react?
Here is a question I’ve been working on for decades: How will religious people react to confirmation of ETI? Or, Would confirmation of ETI cause a crisis for terrestrial religion? (Royal Society presentation).
In 2008, I conducted the Peters ETI Religious Crisis Survey. On the basis of this research, I believe that self-defined religious persons–Christian Buddhist, Jewish, other–are ready to invite space aliens to their barbecues.
If you’re interested, watch a forthcoming podcast series of interviews produced by Hathor Studios for Billy Carson’s 4biddenknowledge.TV. Ancient Alien consultant Nick Pope interviews experts asking about “After Contact.” The segment on religious reactions to ETI airs on Sunday, February 19, 2023. Here’s the teaser and the trailer. You might also enjoy a series moderated by Lance Gharavi & Mary-Jane Rubenstein , “Sacred Space: Religion and Cosmic Exploration Symposium–What is the cosmid future of humanity?”
Are UFOs real? Well, something as yet unidentified is certainly real.
Might some UFOs be piloted from space visitors? I hope so. Perhaps post-giggle scientists researching this question will help us answer it.
For Patheos, Ted Peters posts articles and notices in the field of Public Theology. He is a Lutheran pastor an emeritus professor at the Graduate Theological Union. He co-edits the journal, Theology and Science, with Robert John Russell on behalf of the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences, in Berkeley, California, USA. His single volume systematic theology, God—The World’s Future, is now in the 3rd edition. He has also authored God as Trinity plus Sin: Radical Evil in Soul and Society as well as Sin Boldly: Justifying Faith for Fragile and Broken Souls. See his website: TedsTimelyTake.com.
Watch for his new 2023 book, The Voice of Public Theology, to be published by ATF Press.
Other articles on related topics include:
How to become an astrotheologian
Astrotheology as Public Theology
Do we have space neighbors in God’s kingdom?
NASA and Priests Preparing for ETI Contact
Introducing astrotheology and astroethics