Jim Bohannon interviews John E. Mack, M.D.

Jim Bohannon: Welcome to the Jim Bohannon Show and good evening, all. It’s good to have you with us on what was almost a rainy night here in the nation’s Capitol, not a terribly rainy night, but at least one that gave a little bit of pause as to what might be dropping from the sky.

Listen to the interview (37 min, mp3)

We hope that things are pleasant where you are as we discuss tonight, a circumstance, a situation, which is to say the least most intriguing. We are talking about the new book by our guest, the Harvard professor of psychiatry, Pulitzer prize-winning author, Dr. John Mack, who has written the book Abduction: Human Encounters with Aliens.

Is this for real?

John Mack: The phenomenon has a power to it. There’s no question in my mind about that. Question is what is going on and that, I don’t know. What I have discovered now in working with about 90 of these individuals is that there is something going on here that I can’t explain. I can’t reduce it to any of the psychiatric syndromes with which I’m familiar.

Jim Bohannon: First of all, we are told that – there are like 13 case histories?

John Mack: 13 case histories out of the 90 people that I’ve seen.

Jim Bohannon: None of them could be termed by any reasonable clinical analysis to be mentally ill, disturbed, anything like that?

John Mack: That’s correct.

Jim Bohannon: Yet they tell common stories, correct?

John Mack: Yes, that’s correct.

Jim Bohannon: There is, I assume, reasonable evidence that they have not consulted beforehand to get their stories straight?

John Mack: They are not. They are people who have not been in touch with one another or others who have had these experiences until they are brought together with such a person so they will not feel so isolated.

Jim Bohannon: Do you come before us tonight with what you feel is proof-positive? That in fact there are humans who have encountered aliens?

John Mack: Again, we have words that are attractive to us, like proof or absolute evidence. And I can’t say that. I’m a clinician. I work with people through interview methods — sometimes in some of these cases the ones in the book with hypnosis or with some form of relaxation that helps them to fill out the memories that they have. But I will not offer proof of what this is. There is something going on here that I can’t explain and my purpose in this is not to prove or persuade anybody of anything, but to ask us to open our minds to some reality that goes beyond what we already know.

Jim Bohannon: We start out, apparently at least based on what’s on page eight, with even the questioning of what is in fact reality. And I quote from the introduction, “the most commonly debated issue, whether abductions are really taking place”, which certainly seems like a good place to start, “leads us to the center of questions about perception and levels of consciousness. The most glaring question is whether there is any reality independent of consciousness”.

Well now most of us, and again, I’m certainly throwing in a lot of lay person’s thoughts here, most of us are aware of the fact that in our subconscious or semi-conscious or whatever, for example the dream state is, I have personally flapped my arms and flown. I have walked naked through shopping malls, except when I wake up I know I didn’t really do that. And to me, at least in this instance that I cite, that’s not even approaching reality. That’s just my mind playing little games.

John Mack: Well, let me explain why these are not dreams, because one of the things is offered in criticism of my work is that, well, these people are dreaming. Dreams are very individual. On a given night, you have people all over the United States who are dreaming. The dreams will be very different one from another. Very individual. These stories from people from all over the United States – and now we’re finding in other countries as well – are very similar in detail. They are talking about experiences which are very intricate, highly detailed, very troubling to them, which they do not want to have be true. Very similar one to another, very consistent. Dreams do not behave like that.

Jim Bohannon: Okay, well now just lead me along here if you could. There are many people who have dreamed the two circumstances I just mentioned of flying and of being naked in a public place. And those are common. Are they not?

John Mack: That would be a type of dream that is fairly frequent.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Then why is what these people experience different from this commonality?

John Mack: Well let me explain what this experience is like.

Jim Bohannon: Okay.

John Mack: A person is in their bedroom or a car. They experience a presence around them which frightens them. They may see these, one or another type of alien beings, which are not familiar to them, and certainly were not at the time that I started this work. They experience a paralysis. They’re frightened. They experience themselves sometimes floating down a hall or through the wall of their car, being taken up on a beam of light into a craft, which they may or may not see. They describe the alien beings in quite uniform terms. And again, details that are not in the media. In the craft, they are examined. They are subjected to scanning by these beings. There’s a taller being, which they see as the leader or doctor. There are a whole series of procedures that occur that involve taking of skin samples, probing of their bodies, a whole complex series, complex narrative, which is quite similar one to another, which is not simply a vague sense of flying or something like that. It’s a highly intricate narrative.

Jim Bohannon: Very specific.

John Mack: And this is not something that as far as I can tell, they got from any media accounts. Many of the details are not in the media. They will see symbols, for example, on the ships that other abductees will also see. And they haven’t compared those symbols. They will describe the instruments that they’re probed with and write pictures of them. Other abductees will write, will make that… describe those instruments with the same pictures. Those pictures are not available in any literature. In other words, there’s a hard edge detail to this, which makes it a mystery for me. It’s not something that I can explain away or reduce to some other condition.

Jim Bohannon: We will come back and we’ll introduce you to a few people such as Ed and Sheila N. These are the people among others who have been interviewed by Dr. John Mack.

[music: Twilight Zone theme]

Certainly we have entered a zone of interest of inquiry and where exactly we are headed, I don’t know. Is this the Twilight Zone? It is certainly an area that is twilight in that it is not well lit by contemporary knowledge. We’re not exactly sure what is out there with that which we’re dealing. Dr. John Mack is our guest. He is the author of Abduction: Human Encounters with Aliens. Before we meet some of these people, our guests in the previous portion of the program was Paul Kurtz of the group of CSICOP, which is reaching for the material I stuck to one side here, the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal.

By what you said when you first came on the air, you Dr. Mack sound as if you are of the same skeptical mind as Dr. Kurtz!

John Mack: I think the difference would be that what he is requiring is material proof of everything that is real. In other words, something is not real unless we have, say, [when] we’re talking about UFOs, a dinner plate that’s dropped from a UFO. The fact, for example, that say hundreds of thousands, if not several million people have had UFO abduction experiences, that in itself would not be evidence. What he would require is an object that could be examined, or an artifact.

Jim Bohannon: So it’s evidence only that people are having a common experience.

John Mack: That’s right. So, but I think that’s interesting.

Jim Bohannon: Well I’m sure he does too.

John Mack: What is that about? In other words, something is occurring to these people then, and it has a physical effect. In other words, there are cuts, scoop marks, lesions on their bodies that occur after the abductions. UFOs are observed in the community, by the media, by neighbors, independently of the person having the abduction experience – who may themselves not see the UFO. It occurs in children as young as two or three years old. So a psychological theory, and I’ve looked at all of them – hallucinations and all the things that are thrown at these people as arguments that, to invalidate the authenticity of what they’re going through, I’ve looked at them. I’ve not been able to come up with a psychiatric account or explanation that comes even close to explaining what these people have undergone.

Jim Bohannon: Ok let me ask you this. What kind of physical evidence is left in terms of the physical examinations? You mentioned well, I would assume if it’s a physical examination as we know it, there would be tissue that was a torn or strained or stressed in some way?

John Mack: Yeah, we have that. We have lesions on their bodies, cuts as long as three or four inches. We have scoop marks. We have lesions, triangular shape, punch marks on their bodies. Lesions which are like small ulcers, eight or 10 of them in a circle on a person’s wrist. In the case I am mentioning this man is a quadriplegic so he’s incapable of doing this to himself, which is one of the things that the debunkers will say, well, these people are simply doing it to themselves. That as best as I can determine is not the case.

Jim Bohannon: Okay well, let’s meet some of these people. We’ll start off with Ed, a technician, in his mid-forties at a high-tech farm in Massachusetts, married to Lynn, a writer with whom he shares an interest in science and technology. We go back to the summer of ‘89. What happened?

John Mack: Ed was in his early forties at the time. He was walking along the Marginal Way in Ogunquit, with his wife. He began to feel a kind of strange feeling. And over the next few days, memories returned of an experience that had occurred when he was 16 years old. At that time he was with another teenager. They were camping on the seashore in Maine. They were in the… the two boys were in the family Nash.[1] The fathers were in a motel nearby. A light came down into the… a strong light came into the Nash. He found himself being removed and taken to a pod, which was on the edge – a small UFO, which was on the edge of that rocky shore. And he had a memory of this experience that he recall consciously.

And I think this is an important point to stress, that a good 30% of the memories that these individuals have of these experiences are not obtained with hypnosis. They are available to them in consciousness. Actually in Ed’s case, what he was able to remember with hypnosis was richer and, from a clinical point of view, more reliable than what he was able to remember consciously.

What he recalled consciously was that he encountered a female alien being, that there was some kind of a sexual connection between them. She filled his head full of a dire information, warnings about what would happen to the planet in the future. He was very shaken up by this because he was from a very conservative family. And he took this in [and] didn’t know what to make of it.

Under hypnosis, what occurred or what he remembered was much more disturbing to him. There was no sex, there was the very familiar now, rather cold clinical attitude of the alien being, the female alien being toward him. A sperm sample was taken by a device, which has been described by many male abductees, which is very disturbing and humiliating to them.

And he was able to remember many more details concerning the destruction of the Earth and warnings about what would happen, and was very deeply affected by this experience.

Jim Bohannon: Let me ask you this, what’s the significance of the title of this chapter? “You will remember when you need to know”?

John Mack: Because when the experience occurred [in 1961], he was unable to recall more details. He wanted to know what the information was that came to him. When he recalled in 1989 that something had happened, that he’d been taken into this pod, he wanted to be able to remember more. He wanted to be able to remember more of what the alien beings told him, and they, and he simply couldn’t. And they said, “you will remember when you need to know”. And that, and that information did come back to him in 1989 and much more of it came back when I worked with him in 1992.

Jim Bohannon: One question that has always concerned a lot of people is why, if in fact aliens wish encounters with human beings, they don’t just land at Harvard or Yale or the White House lawn, or the United Nations building along the East River. Why do they always pick out individuals?

John Mack: We’re not very good at figuring out alien motives or intentions. We can know more of the effects of what they do and their impact on the people that have had these experiences.

My own sense about this – and now I’m going beyond data, I’m trying to answer, respond to your question – is that the phenomenon is subtle. In other words, it’s not as if they’re here to save us or they’re here to… they may not. It may not even be about us. It may be in some way they may be dealing with us the way we deal with an endangered species of caribou, by tagging them, or it may be that they are simply using us for some purpose we don’t understand. So it’s not as if this is something that is in our favor necessarily.

But my own notion about this is that it is in some way inviting us to expand our sense of ourselves, possibly to know, to learn more about ourselves and what is going on in the universe. That they’re, they’re not… I mean, the usual answer to that is, “well, we’re so aggressive that we would attack them”. And we often are very aggressive in our response to them. But I think more complex and probably reasonable response is that in some way what they are doing requires that we stretch ourselves to know about it and to learn about it. And that it has something to do with how we learn about reality. And we’re being invited to grow and learn more. But I don’t, I really don’t know the answer to your question.

Jim Bohannon: I’m sure you’re familiar with the name Donna Bassett. Donna Bassett says that she posed as an abductee and was able to fool you. And that as it was put in the Time magazine of April 25th, “John made it obvious what he wanted to hear. I, Bassett, provided the answers.”

John Mack: Yeah, I’m not, I don’t feel free to talk about a former client. I can say in general why someone might do something like that. I don’t know what the motives of a person would be, but somebody that moves out of the area as she did, becomes in some way disaffected, as in her case is cut off from the group that was her support group for reasons having to do with distresses of their own, a person can become angry, find ways of attacking the work. If the writer in that case had taken the trouble to talk to any number of other experiencers/abductees about her, or about the work, the writer could have gotten a very different perspective.

As far as my leading her, it’s very natural that someone who is going to explore experiences that are as delicate for them, which they have so much concern about, that trust is very important. And they will often ask to see material that I’ve written. They want to know something about me. That’s a very common thing. But the idea that I would give somebody something to lead them or to try to impress or push upon them certain ideas of my own, that I would never do. That’s not something that a responsible clinician does.

Jim Bohannon: Another charge, another individual, Dave Duclos, who was quoted in Time as saying he left your experiments when he became disenchanted. And I would quote what Time says Mr. Duclos told them “he,” meaning you, “had a hidden agenda against anybody who said anything negative about the aliens. Once Mack said to me,” and he is quoting you here, “if you think the aliens are bad, Mr. Duclos, keep thinking about it until you realize that they are good”.

Well now obviously anybody who said that has an agenda, did you in fact say that?

John Mack: No, that is not something I said, in fact, I’ve talked to Mr. Duclos since then. And he says that was distorted, taken out of context. He’s very troubled about it.

Jim Bohannon: There is no context in which that wouldn’t be…

John Mack: I don’t, I, this is simply not…

Jim Bohannon: Either he’s lying or…

John Mack: No, I don’t say he’s lying, but this is not something I would say to anybody. And he knows, and we’ve talked about this, that some of the experiences are very, very troubling. I do not have a position this is good or bad. In fact, it may not even be about us in that sense. That’s the way we construct our reality, as good or bad. But he is very devoted and committed to this work and knows different than that himself. And has said so to me since that article came out.

Jim Bohannon: We have about 30 seconds to go here. What do you think the answer is? Is it that somebody is out there who wants something from us, or is there some galactic message, or just exactly what do you think is going on?

John Mack: You’re asking?

Jim Bohannon: Yes, you.

John Mack: I don’t know. There’s some… I think one of the things that’s been most interesting to me is how disturbing it is to us to even consider that there could be another intelligence entering into our world. In other words, every type of explanation has been used to try to reduce this phenomenon to something we already know. And why is it that we resist the idea that there could be some kind of intelligence actually trying to reach us in some way?

Jim Bohannon: We’ll continue the thought and be back, 703-418-1500 after these messages.

[station break, jazz music]

Jim Bohannon: And again, before the half-hour break that we had to hit at a precise time, you were talking about what you felt was a fear almost to confront the possibility that we might be visited by another culture.

Isn’t it really the fear that we might just be offered this in kind of a hazy, New Age, undefined kind of way? I mean, as long as we are approaching this in a reasonable and skeptical approach, that would seem to be not a fear of the unknown, just a fear of sloppy techniques, wouldn’t it?

John Mack: I don’t think so. I think that when you, as a clinician, when you find in case after case after case, experiences described in great detail with physical corroborating evidence, among people who don’t know each other, have everything to lose by coming forth to talk about it, don’t believe it themselves, in fact find their own sense of reality shattered by what occurs or what has happened, you’re dealing with something which has a robust quality to it. Now if we’re going to insist upon physical proof in the sense of a dinner plate dropped from a UFO or something of that kind, we’re not going to get it. But if we…

Jim Bohannon: How do we know that we wouldn’t get it? I mean, don’t these people ever drop things?

John Mack: I have, this is a sense that I have, that it’s a subtle matter. That whatever this culture is, whatever this intelligence is that’s trying to reach us, it is not giving us a “smoking gun”.

Jim Bohannon: How do you know that they wouldn’t?

John Mack: Well they might at some point, if they, perhaps if at some point, whatever intelligence is behind this whole thing decided that — or even if that notion of deciding makes sense, but — if, if it, if the situation, if our intelligence in the total sense, evolved to the point where we were ready to experience this in some direct way that we could all acknowledge, perhaps it would. But at this point we would probably just shoot at it and try to destroy it, as people often have done with UFOs.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Here’s a call from Lansing, Michigan, and I’m sorry, you will need the headphones here. Forgive me for, I regrettably did not mention that earlier. The phones are on and go ahead, Lansing, Michigan, you’re on the air.

Lansing: Hi, Jim, how you doing?

Jim Bohannon: Very well, thank you.

Lansing: On this unidentified flying object and aliens and so forth. It seems as though, if we were living on Mars, now obviously we’re on Earth, we sent a Viking lander over to Mars. Which if there, if was some form of life, which it hasn’t been proven or disproven…

Jim Bohannon: Well we haven’t found any, but there’s never been any suggestion that, that, for example, Mars could sustain intelligent life. As we know it, the conditions aren’t there.

Lansing: Well, that’s true, but by the same means, we are able to send a spacecraft there, as well as Pluto, Saturn.

Jim Bohannon: Well, okay. We’ve been able to pretty much cruise portions of the solar system. What point are you getting at in the context of this discussion?

Lansing: It would seem as though some being that was more advanced could go even beyond the solar system and come to our location here on Earth.

Jim Bohannon: I don’t think any knowledgeable authority would dispute that possibility.

Lansing: Well that would just be a, a support towards…

Jim Bohannon: Well, it’s not support that it happened. It’s a support that it could happen.

Lansing: It could happen.

Jim Bohannon: Okay.

Lansing: Exactly.

Jim Bohannon: Well, I don’t guess that the good doctor would disagree with you.

John Mack: No, in fact, what I like about is the tentative way that he put it. In other words, I don’t, I don’t claim in any of these cases this in fact literally happened. I’m dealing with something that I can’t explain. These experiences are mysterious to me.

It is possible that some technology, apparently some technology is involved here, whatever these beings are, that goes way beyond our ability to travel around space. In other words, what they’re able to do to float people through walls or to appear from we know not where in this very concrete way before people, this is something that our technology simply can’t grasp.

Jim Bohannon: Okay, Lansing, thank you. To Liverpool, New York. Hello. You’re on the air.

Liverpool: Hello. First of all, I’d like to mention that I’ve been dying to get my hands on the book report on the UFO wave of 1947 for some time. I bet I’m not the only one. I’ve been reading seriously into UFO cases. I’ve come upon the Interrupted Journey, Secret Life, as well as a three-part series of books by Raymond Fowler. He’s come under some fire, but I find it find the clues in it, in the book, The Watchers, interesting. Specific ones, such as the engineering and motive, power of the craft is described. It would be unfortunate if the these books were proven to be false, but I’d like to think that The Watchers is unique in giving some precise details. I was wondering what you thought of it? And if I could get in one more thought, um..?

Jim Bohannon: Let’s let him see what he thinks of at first. And then we’ll get in your other thought.

John Mack: Well you’re covering a lot of ground. You’re talking about Secret Life, Raymond Fowler’s books, The Watchers, and more recently the Allagash cases. And I mean, these are very powerful abduction stories. Again, they’re narratives, which have a hard edge to them, are intricate, are describing in the case of the Allagash four, four different men who are abducted at the same time, each giving independent accounts which corroborate one with another and have not, have not gotten their stories from each other as far as one can tell. John Carpenter who is an investigator of this phenomenon in Missouri has a dozen or so situations where he has independently examined individuals who report abduction experiences, and they give details, as many as 40 specific details independently of each other, which, of what they experienced in the UFOs. And those details fit tightly, one with another. And these people have not told each other what they have experienced. So there is some hard edge to this. Again, it will not satisfy the demands for physical proof of the skeptics, but it invites us to consider that something is going on here that we can’t explain.

Jim Bohannon: Yeah. Okay. I don’t think, and again, no one is questioning that, okay, maybe something’s happening. Maybe it is. Okay, you had one other quick point, Liverpool?

Liverpool: Yeah. I’m starting to agree with Jacques Vallee, when he, about the resemblance between the succubi and incubi being similar, very similar to UFO abduction accounts, you know, where the…

Jim Bohannon: No, we don’t have the faintest idea what you’re talking about, what are you talking about?

Liverpool: The incubi, during the witchcraft trials time, there were reports of fairy rings and then where a female demon would, you know, mate, try and mate and then created an offspring and then take them away. And then…

Jim Bohannon: No we don’t know, and we don’t really have time to get into it. Maybe that’s a whole program some night, but for you to explain all of that would not really give us time to give an adequate answer and let other people get on. Chicago, hello, you’re on the air.

Chicago: Yes. I was wondering is there any place in the Bible where it might state that there is intelligent life on other planets? And also, the chance that we might already have evidence in Roswell, New Mexico from a UFO crash?

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Anything biblical about this?

John Mack: Yeah, I mean, Ezekial seeing a “wheel in the sky”. That’s been compared to UFOs. I think it’s a little risky to try to compare, too tightly, the modern UFO abduction phenomenon with fairies, acounts of fairies abducting babies, or visions of chariots in the sky or the Bible. It’s suggestive. But what we’re dealing with now is a much more hard-edged phenomenon. People actually witnessed to be missing. People who have lesions on their bodies after abduction experiences. Burned earth where the UFOs landed. Implants, which are being examined. Pregnancies, that people are experiences having been removed. Again, often these findings are subtle, but they are very real. They will not satisfy a radical skeptic who has an ideological mindset against considering this at all, but something hard-edged is here.

Jim Bohannon: Again, maybe that’s an unfair charge that people are just out to destroy you. I mean, again, no one is questioning that it’s an interesting phenomenon, and no one is questioning that it is amazing that they all tell these similar stories.

The only challenge I would think would be whether or not you can extrapolate anything beyond the fact that these people are telling similar stories, and extrapolating it to the point of suggesting that this is proof of a visit by aliens. Isn’t that the area of disagreement, really?

John Mack: Yeah. And I guess I mean, I’ve never myself and I don’t think any of the people who have studied this phenomenon claim that this has proven that we’re being visited by aliens, but that something very powerful is occurring and that there is another intelligence that is entering into our world. This is to me, more than interesting. This is something that challenges our whole way of thinking.

Jim Bohannon: Yeah. Assuming again, that in fact, this is proof that another intelligence is entering. It’s an area of great interest and inquiry, but it’s not necessarily proof positive that an outside intelligence has entered.

John Mack: And again, I’m not claiming proof positive, but I’m inviting people to look more deeply into it, to look for the physical findings, to come up with an explanation, to examine these people. When you mentioned the case of Sheila earlier in the book, she had been seen a psychiatrist because she had had some distressing what she wanted to believe were dreams and what turned out to be abduction experiences. She was a social worker who was very precise and accurate about our observations of herself and her world. She underwent three hypnosis sessions with me. Her psychiatrist observed two of them, the last two. And what he saw when she was recovering the memories of her abductions was so emotionally powerful. She was writhing and sweating and deeply troubled by these encounters. There was no other source that he or I, and he’d worked with her for several years, had been able to find, other than what she was reporting to account for this. And he came away feeling that something real had happened to her, some kind of abduction experience, which again, he could not explain, but he’s become one of the few mental health professionals who I can trust to see these individuals now.

Jim Bohannon: We’ll take a break. We’ll be back with more after these messages.

[station break, soaring music]

Jim Bohannon: Welcome back to the Bohannan Show and our guest, Dr. John Mack, the author of Abduction, published by Scribners is available by calling our toll free number 1-800-688-3800. You may use any major credit card call anytime day or night. To speak with Dr. Mack that number is 703-418-1500. Pittsburgh, thank you for waiting. And go ahead.

Pittsburgh: Hello, Jim? Hello, Dr. Mack. Interesting program. What I… a slight follow up to the last call, I would say, mentioning the Bible. I was curious as to whether or not people involved, if you yourself have considered that this could be rather than an alien intelligence, actually the work of demons. And I was wondering if any of your subjects had a personal religious belief, specifically, you know, any relation to Jesus Christ?

John Mack: Two parts to your question.

Pittsburgh: Yeah.

John Mack: Aliens are aliens. I don’t know what they are, but they’re not demons. They are described consistently, the most common kind being three and a half or four foot little grays with huge eyes which have such power when the people look into them, the absence of ears, no hair, little slits for nostrils and the mouth, slender bodies. And they have this certain technological capability to do what they do, which we’ve talked about. So they are what they are. They’re not demons. They don’t kill people. They are seemingly involved in some kind of species merger between them and us, some sort of reproductive process which has some kind of evolutionary nature to it. We are just studying it, just beginning to learn what that is.

Jim Bohannon: And the more overview type of question, do you subscribe to any kind of supernatural explanation or do you consider that these beings are part of the physical universe as we know it?

John Mack: That’s of course the, that’s the biggest question in this whole area. Where I’ve come to in this is that they seem to have mastered some kind of interdimensional travel. This is a hypothesis first put forward by Jacques Vallee, who was mentioned earlier. They come from, apparently, some other dimension. They’re often observed as being near “the source of creation” by abductees, who will experience them as coming from “home” or from “the source” where matter and energy are created.

But what they’re able to do is take a certain type of form, which is quite consistently described, and enter into our physical world and manifest here and create very profound physical effects. So they cross over from the what should be the spirit world, according to our worldview, and enter into our physical world. And that creates a lot of problems for the way we think.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Washington DC. You’re next with Dr. John Mack, hello?

Washington: Yes. interesting program. I… my brother… I’m on a car phone in case I cut out. My brother was one of the abductee, the multiple abductee cases that John Carpenter has researched.

Jim Bohannon: Just for those who don’t know, who is John Carpenter?

Washington: He’s a gentleman out of Springfield, Missouri who has worked with a dual abductions, multiple abductions.

Jim Bohannon: Are you familiar with this gentleman?

John Mack: Yeah I just referred to him before.

Jim Bohannon: You did. Okay.

Washington: Yeah, it was interesting to hear his name while I was waiting. And I’ve heard all of the interview tapes that my brother has supplied me, when they, him and my sister-in-law were under hypnosis. And it’s really amazing what they bring out while they’re under hypnosis, and the psychiatrist doesn’t lead them on in any way. They try and guide them through this journey.

This happened like 19 years ago when I lived in Iowa. They live in Missouri now. And the similarities between their stories, just incredible. Although she seems to remember more than my brother, and my brother was the one who originally went to Mr. Carpenter because of anxiety that he was experiencing.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Any comments, Dr. Mack?

John Mack: Well, I mean, what the Washington man is describing is, is the power of this phenomenon. When you are actually exposed to it, you are confronted with the cases, you see that the intensity of the emotion that people experienced, the similarity of the stories of people – in this case of multiple abductions, where each person describes in minute detail, the same kind of furniture, or computer instruments inside the ship, the same instruments. And yet they have not communicated with each other. I mean, there’s something very powerful entering into our reality. And it invites further study.

What I was trying to do in this book, one of the things I was trying to do is map out a territory to invite people, to study this phenomenon further and also make it possible for people like the individuals, the family that the caller was talking about, to not feel ashamed to talk about this. And not to have to face ridicule every time they bring this up, which has been a problem in this culture.

Jim Bohannon: All right. Caller, thank you. And we’ll have more calls to come after these messages.

[station break, music from Twilight Zone or Outer Limits]

Jim Bohannon: Welcome back. As we discuss an area of great fascination tonight. The book is Abduction: Human Encounters with Aliens. John Mack is our guest. It’s a Scribners publication. And to speak with Dr. Mack here right now, 703-418-1500. We go to Silver Spring, Maryland, hello?

Silver Spring:

Yes, hello Jimbo. I’d like to know if the good doctor is familiar with a certain UFO case from Switzerland, the Eduard “Billy” Meier case in which this contacee was able to question the aliens from Pleiades and the aliens said that the universe is 47 trillion years old, trillion with a T?

Jim Bohannon: I believe those are pronounced the Pleiades by the way, but it’s picky point. Anyway are you familiar with this?

John Mack: I’m familiar with the case. It’s one of the most controversial cases in the whole UFO field. There are people who think it is a complete hoax. There are people think that Billy Meier is one of the great visionaries. I am not able to comment on it beyond that.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. Caller, ok? And, and again, this caller by the way should do what everybody else should do, and that is turn down your radio because the delay needless to say can be a little bit on the confusing side. 703-418-1500. And we go to Ithaca, New York. Hello? Yes, Ithaca, go right ahead.

Ithaca: I wanted to ask what he thought about the idea that the alien originated from the Zeta Reticuli stars?

John Mack: Yeah. I have trouble with the kind of straight geography of aliens because they don’t operate like they come from some star and sort of come here on a fast-moving vehicle, because the whole thing doesn’t work out that way. There is some kind of other dimension, from which they appear to come and enter into our dimension. And they may actually give information that says they’re from some place or other, but I don’t think that’s something one can really rely on.

Jim Bohannon: Okay. With about another minute or so to go here.

I get the impression you feel like almost that you’re being bracketed. On the one hand, you’re getting inquiries that amount to Buck Rogers, and on the other hand, you’re getting challenges from people you feel are too rigorous in their demands for proof. And that you find yourself in the middle.

Would that be accurate?

John Mack: That’s very accurate. What I’m saying is that this is a robust phenomenon. It’s real in some sense, not in the sense that these people are simply subjectively making it up, because it’s real both in a physical sense, but also it invites us to explore the realms of consciousness. It asks us to challenge all of those language polarities that we stick to so rigorously about real/unreal, inside/outside. It asks us to look at fundamental questions about what exists in the cosmos, about intelligences, about what is, who we are. And you’re absolutely right. It is not this way or that way. It is not literally physical, but it’s also not simply subjective. It’s something that crosses those boundaries.

Jim Bohannon: Clearly though, ultimately, if we’re going to fully understand this, we need something a bit more in the way of hard evidence. That would be helpful, wouldn’t it?

John Mack: It would be helpful. And we’re looking for it, but I think we also need to respect more the evidence of consciousness. Where you get… because what do we really know except what we agree upon from human experience? Even if that isn’t simply a physical observation from an instrument, but is the evidence of deeply felt and carefully observed experience.

Jim Bohannon: Dr. John Mack, our guest. Again, the book is Abduction, and the Bohannan show will continue right here on the Mutual Broadcasting System.

[1] A “nash” is a kind of car-top tent, but in this instance the reference is to a model of 1950s automobile by that name, which had sedan models with “the ability to turn your vehicle into a sleeping car”. Ed recounted to Mack about his 1961 experience, “His father had one of these Nashes that the seats folded down [in] back in the fifties”. In Abduction, Mack wrote, “The [parents] stayed in a cabin while the boys slept nearby in the Nash, which had fold-down seats in the back. The car was parked perhaps a hundred yards from the sea.”

  • Jim Bohannon was inducted into the national Radio Hall of Fame in 2003. Visit his website for current shows: www.jimbohannonshow.com.

© 1994 Jim Bohannon
Originally aired April 26, 1994 on The Jim Bohannon Show, Washington DC