A Recovery Blog

This blog is about my continuing recovery from severe mental illness. I celebrate this recovery by continuing to write, by sharing my music and artwork and by exploring Buddhist ideas and concepts. I claim that the yin/yang symbol is representative of all of us because I have found that even in the midst of acute psychosis there is still sense, method and even a kind of balance. We are more resilient than we think. We can cross beyond the edge of the sane world and return to tell the tale. A deeper kind of balance takes hold when we get honest, when we reach out for help, when we tell our stories.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Visitors?

For so long people on earth thought the sun revolved around the earth. We are an isolated species and therefore quite self-centered. People don't look up at the stars and wonder about life in other worlds, instead they (as I do too) keep their focus here on earth and ignore the as yet unproven possibilities of life elsewhere. As far as most humans are concerned, we are the only thinking beings in the universe. This is so very unlikely. Granted there are a minority of people who concede that there might be sentient life somewhere in the universe but that they are just too far away to make any contact. But why is it that so many can believe in God and angels and devils and spirits but not in another invisible life form? I didn't grow up believing in angels and devils and perhaps that made it easier for me to believe in "aliens".

I first seriously considered the possibility that aliens exist here and now after reading a book called COMMUNION: A TRUE STORY by Whitley Strieber. The book came out in 1987 when I was twenty five years old. Mr. Strieber wrote soberly, directly and honestly about his encounters with an alien life form he named "The Visitors". The account was fascinating and frightening at the same time and it made an impression on me. I began believing that there were people out there who actually had encountered these Visitors. I've never had an encounter experience of the kind described in Mr Strieber's book but it was soon after I read the book that I began hearing voices. The voices both felt like me and not like me. They were thoughtful and at times helpful and I didn't fall into psychosis, no delusions or paranoia. I was barely aware of these voices most of the time, but they remained with me benignly for another ten or eleven years. I believed then as I still believe now that the voices people hear, those with or without psychosis, come from an alien source. I've lived through delusions and I know their quality now, but this belief is not a delusion. I also have absolutely no proof of this, I just have my personal experience and consequent belief.

I know because I admittedly suffer from schizophrenia that I have very little credibility but I still have a need to define my experience to myself and to you, so bear with me as I try.

Who are these beings? Where do they come from? Why are they here? I just don't know. But my experience shows them to be sort of angels and devils. Not visible yet quite powerful in the psyche of humankind. And that's the playing field, the psyche not the material world. So what can they do? They can enter individual minds in a way that humans cannot do with each other and this is their greatest power I believe. Are they hostile or peaceful? That's a hard question to answer. I'm still not sure. Certainly they can be vicious and cruel but there are always voices of reason and kindness somewhere at hand, even I've found in the most desperate times. It truly is like living with both angels and devils. Perhaps they are just like us, some cruel, some kind. Or maybe they are buddhas sent to test us and wake us up. They could be either or both but I can't see them well enough to know. They hide, they are indirect, they are manipulative, they are intelligent and sensitive. They could be afraid. They could be following a personal belief system. They could want to keep us off guard. For whatever reason they do not want any free physical contact with us. Looking at it plainly I would say that they are hostile and sick, but looking deeper makes me think that the Higher Power is using us all for some great and good purpose. I wish that the purpose could be revealed but I guess that's the goal in living life's lessons, for each of us to find out for ourselves.

What started me on this today was an experience I had and have had several times before. Sometime during the night I start to come to consciousness but before I do I'm caught looking at delicate, almost sharp geometric patterns that move and within the shapes which are almost beautiful, there are scenes of life on earth, people, places, etc... The resulting pattern is alive with some kind of strange vitality. It is an intense experience and other worldly. At the moment I wanted to look away then the scenes took on a negative almost menacing personality and I began to wake up. The feeling was almost like a narcotic one and I fell back into sleep very quickly.
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