Unknown Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Extraterrestrial

Back in World War II pilots on bombing missions in Germany reported glowing globs that flew parallel to them. These globes were rumored to be a new secret weapon of the Third Reich but after the end of the war it was determined that the Germans had no such weapon.

A few years later a private pilot, Kenneth Arnold, in Washington state reported observing metallic craft flying faster than any craft of that era was capable. He described them as having a “saucer-like” shape and the newspaper reports coined the term flying saucers to describe them.

As more and more people reported strange aerial phenomena over the next several years it became obvious that flying saucer was too specific a term to cover the wide range of shapes that people were reporting. The term Unidentified Flying Object or UFO was coined to refer to all unexplained aerial phenomena.

The thing that has been bothering me when I think about all of these strange, unexplained phenomena, not all of which were observed flying, is that we seem to assume that such objects are necessarily from outer space. It is seldom suggested that they might come from other dimensions. One notable exception to that observation is Jacques Vallee. He was careful to assert only that the reported phenomena that he investigated were unexplained. He even discussed the fact that similar reports had been made for hundreds and even thousands of years.

As our physicists and cosmologists are beginning to advance theories that there are more dimensions than the four that Relativistic Physics postulates, it becomes more and more credible to me that we could explain these reports of phenomena and strange visitors could be explained by other possibilities besides interstellar travel.

I will admit that I still have hope that we will discover some technique that enables transluminal flight. I also hope we will learn to explore other dimensions. But we should not be too quick to explain the unknown without having first studied the phenomena more closely and established protocols for recording our observations. We must also be careful not to try to force the data to fit into any preconceived notions of what conclusions we should draw from it.

We have not been well served by governments that choose to ignore or, even worse, suppress reports of unexplained phenomena. All they have done is engender distrust of everything that the government says. They have caused the very situation they were ostensibly trying to prevent, which is panicked speculation about the phenomena and rampant distrust of the government.

I hope we learn to investigate unexplained phenomena instead of trying to dismiss it and cover it up. All science was initially considered pseudoscience, until enough people had verified the observations of those making these claims. The universe is a big place and there are many things in it that we can’t begin to imagine. We need to learn to say the simple phrase, “I don’t know.”

Sweet dreams, don’t forget to tell the ones you love that you love them, and most important of all, be kind.