GT: You have a new book out
called, “Passport to the Cosmos
- Human Transformation and Alien
Encounters” so before we talk about that, could you tell us a
little about your background.
John: I'm a psychiatrist trained in adult and child psychiatry
and psychoanalysis, but I've always had an interest in the
applications of human understanding or depth psychology -
whatever one would want to call it - to problems that are not
simply about patients, but about phenomena or subjects that are
outside of the consulting room, such as ethnic conflict, or the
threat of nuclear war.
In the last fifteen years or so I've been interested in what is
called transpersonal psychiatry, which means psychiatry that
derives from an understanding that human consciousness is more
than simply what the brain does but
is a factor in the universe
in which human beings participate, and that is not located in
brains play an important part in
processing information and communication it is not the primary
source of consciousness.
That point of view made it possible for
me to then hear about people who are having experiences that did
not seem to fit the notions of the material world as the
predominant reality, the provable in science.
What I've been
studying over the past decade although very real as I think
reality should be defined, and not necessarily purely materially
real, but it's still nonetheless very real - I would not have
been open to this without having done work in the field of
transpersonal psychiatry which opens the human mind, opens us to
a wider definition, a wider understanding of reality so that
there could be room in that.
However surprising, with this
phenomenon of so-called
alien abduction, my own psyche in a
sense had been opened to the point where I could at least listen
to it. I didn't have to reject it out of hand and pigeonhole it
into something to which it would not fit. So this is a little
bit about how my development made it possible for me to take
this work seriously.
Many people who reject this reality out of
hand have not gone through that process of opening of
GT: You also wrote the book,
Abduction in which you interviewed
a lot of people in regards to their alien abduction experiences,
is that correct?
John: Yes, that was my first book on this subject and it came
out in 1994. It was based on the interviews I had done for three
to four years. There were some fifty or sixty people that I had
worked with and they were principally people in this country.
Since then I have worked with over two hundred people in this
country and quite a few other countries, so I think I have a
richer understanding of what this phenomenon is about. It
doesn't mean I know what it's about, because it's still quite
mysterious, but at least patterns begin to emerge.
This is what
I tried to identify in this last book, Passport to the Cosmos.
GT: Could you tell us about your findings with your research.
John: First of all, it's clear that this is not a phenomenon
that's restricted to American or even the western culture. I
have in the book medicine men from South Africa and Brazil, and
I have talked to people in so many different countries who have
had these experiences, so it's not simply some sort of
projection of our aerospace technology oriented minds, not at
It may be that the fact we have arrived at a certain level
of technology in the culture has contributed to our ability to
recognize UFOs and the technologies associated with the
abduction phenomenon, but that does not mean that it is somehow
the product of western consciousness.
GT: Have you ever had an alien abduction experience?
John: No. That's an important point because my understanding now
of what Barbara Marx Hubbard calls Conscious Evolution, and that
is if we can get our egos out of the way as much as possible, we
have a potential role in the evolution of consciousness in the
sense of an emergence of the full spiritual and human potential.
That means an ability to put our narrow economic and egoistic
motivation to a degree out of the way and also to discover what
is our own particular calling in that larger collective
Each of us has a place to contribute to the whole and
my place is to be a witness for people who have had these
experiences and a bridge, from them, to the mainstream culture,
but not as a direct experiencer. I'm like, hopefully, a trusted
servant in reporting the experiences of other people and then in
that way I am sometimes able to give them a voice where they
would otherwise not have a voice, because I have a position in
the culture which enables me to travel with them and have them
speak in public and write, which they might not be able to do on
So in a sense, I'm a person who augments the message
by my witnessing role.
GT: In your book you speak about the UFOs coming from what you
refer to as the subtle realm. Could you explain the subtle
John: Yes, we in the west - and this is only recently and
certainly is not true in far eastern philosophy and religion and
in Native American spirituality, and wasn't true in western
psychology and spirituality until the last three hundred years -
in these last three hundred years we have gradually separated
the material world as an absolute, and the psyche, the spirit,
as an absolute. But they're quite separate [in that worldview].
They're not all one as we're coming to see more and more.
Therefore, at least in western philosophy and psychology
something is either in the physical material world or it's in
the world of the mind, imagination, spirit, the unseen, and
those two realms are altogether separate.
What the western
restriction of consciousness of this represents and does not
allow for, is something that seems to come from someplace
unseen, someplace beyond our ability to observe it, someplace in
another dimension - whatever you want to call that - what
David Bohm called “from the Implicate Order” or as
Grof calls from
“The Holotropic World,” meaning toward wholeness, or from the
spirit world. There are many terms for this.
But this western
dichotomizing that I just spoke of does not have any place for
something which originates in that other realm, which is what I
am calling the subtle realm; the unseen the fourth or fifth or
sixth or whatever dimension, and that can come from those
dimensions and manifest in the physical world.
Now, when things do that - to stay with the subtlety theme for a
moment - when things do that, they don't manifest in the
physical world the same way that what science usually studies,
manifests. In other words, when science studies curing an
illness with an antibiotic you can take somebody's temperature,
you can administer the antibiotic, you can see what happens to
the blood count, and you can actually physically prove and
demonstrate without any question by physical means that they got
If there is a storm you can count the number of houses
that blew over. If you experiment with what animals can do, you
can prove what they can or cannot do, and that kind of thing.
But in this situation, the physical manifestations though
apparently real are not robust enough to be able to prove them.
I'll give you an example: Budd Hopkins and others - and I've
seen this too - have shown or found that people who have these
experiences will often end up with nose bleeds, cuts on their
bodies, little scoop mark lesions, funny little bumps that they
think are little objects that may have been implanted under the
skin, but none of this, although real, is robust enough to pass
the criteria of mainstream science, because you cannot prove
that those cuts were from aliens.
You can't catch the alien in
the act. There's nothing about those cuts that is so bizarre
that they could not have been caused by something else, and
since this culture finds this whole thing rather far out they
want to stretch to something else rather than that the aliens
did it or whatever these energies are.
So the subtle realm is the place it comes from, and the
manifestations are subtle - not in the sense that experiencers
don't get very distressed when they have these experiences,
that's not so subtle - but subtle in terms of our ability to log
it, to prove it, to even document it in sufficiently clear-cut
ways as physical manifestations to satisfy the requirements of
It's too subtle in that sense, so you have
that kind of double sense in which this is subtle.
GT: Are the aliens helping us?
John: Well, helping, again is one of those human centered words.
They certainly are awakening us and the effect of that awakening
could be very helpful. They don't operate by direct assistance
in the way that somebody comes and helps you physically carry a
load on your back. It's all about consciousness again.
arouse people to be more concerned for the earth by showing them
images of apocalyptic images of destruction of the earth's
living systems in a way that leaves the experiencers viscerally
shaken and then from that they become responsible stewards. But
this is not a direct intervention on their part. They work
through change in human consciousness. That's another example of
the subtle route - by subtle I don't mean that it isn't powerful
or energetically very important.
By subtle, I mean, subtle in
terms of the requirement of something being in the gross
GT: Could you tell us about your future plans.
John: Well, what I'm most interested in now is the larger
question of human experiences that are anomalous, in other,
words, they don't fit what's supposed to be reality.
tend to do in psychiatry or in this society is when people have
experiences that are not within the familiar or prescribed
realms, we tend to look for something wrong with that person
that we attribute to psychopathology, or influences of the
media, or the needs of the collective, rather than to say, well,
maybe there's something about this experience which has to be
taken seriously as being valid in its own right.
As Alfred North
“There is a provoker in the cosmos and we are
receivers. It's not simply that we're creating this entirely
So I'm interested in the whole range of experiences like that:
near death experiences, people who observe crop circles, the
whole area of parapsychology where there is clear evidence that
somehow the collective psyche can effect random number
generators in a way where there's no known mechanisms.
words, anomaly meaning, that there's no known physical
relationship between the observer and the physical objects that
are effected. The effect of prayer, for instance, on patients in
controlled studies that have been done where people who are
prayed for seem to do better even though nobody knows that
they're being prayed for. There's a whole range of anomalies
which I believe if we pull them together, we'll see a picture
that is utterly shattering to the purely materialist world view.
You mentioned to me earlier about Ramtha, well,
channeling is a
tough one. I don't get into channeling too much even though I
think sometimes very important information comes to people from
unknown sources like that.
The channeling is so particularly
suspect in the western materialist world view because if you
don't have a place for the fact that there are spirits in the
universe to begin with, or beings, gods or whatever that can
communicate to us, if that basic premise isn't accepted, then to
try to include channeling as one of the anomalous experiences,
it is tricky.
I mean, I think as part of the human experience,
it doesn't fit the mainstream definitions of reality and
communication and relationship.
I brought that up because you spoke of Ramtha, but it would
apply to anything of the “ascended masters,” or “the Emmanuel.”
There's a huge, huge rich human experience with communications
from other entities which we call channeling.
They are a good
example of another kind of anomalous. But it's not anomalous in
the sense that it's considered odd around the world - most
cultures wouldn't have such a problem with it as ours does - but
it's anomalous for this culture because it doesn't fit our
purely materialist notions of communication.
electronics. It doesn't come over the airwaves. I
GT: Well, in regards to Ramtha, few years ago here at RSE we had
several scientists from around the US and some around the world
who came to study Ramtha,
JZ and the students. They studied us
for about a year, they wrote papers, and they presented these
papers at the Conference of Contemporary Spirituality.
scientists were all very excited by their findings and they said
that something was definitely going on here. But the most
dramatic results were from parapsychologists Stanley Krippner
and Ian Wickramaskera who monitored eight physiological
measurements on JZ before and while she was channeling Ramtha,
and when Ramtha came in on the picture, the needles dropped
It was very dramatic and they repeated the testings
It was definite proof in the scientific community
that something was definitely happening here and they wanted to
go further with it. So when I send you the newspaper with the
interview, I will also send you some articles to do with the
conference and other written documentation from the conference.
John: Yes, please do. I want to take all these things that are
not supposed to be in the western world view and show them and
get some kind of classification, or taxonomy of non-ordinary
experiences and show that there are so many that really don't
fit the purely materialist mechanistic world view.
I think this
can help to bring about the change in world view to understand
the universe - much more as mysterious dimensions that go way
beyond what we can prove. I think that also means to discover
that we are much more connected with the ultimate creative
principle, the divine goddess, and from that we can rediscover
our sacred relationship with the earth and other living things.
So it would give us pause in terms of how we treat the planet.
That's where I see my own research going, to look more deeply
into the whole range of anomalies that are right in front of our
eyes in a way, and try to get a rational organizing of what all
of those are and what is their collective impact on our current
GT: Are you going to write a book about it?
John: Well, I don't know. It depends on time, energy,
everything. At least I would like to work on it, and where it
will end up - hopefully in a book - you never know.
GT: Is there anything you would like to add?
John: I think that behind this strange phenomenon - at least it
seems strange to the western mind, not to native cultures - is
some kind of worry; a cosmic worry about this species, us, and
what we're doing to the earth.
The information that the experiencers get from this subtle realm, the aliens, or whatever
you want to call it, is consistently about the earth, that the
earth is in terrible peril, that it is not okay for this one
species to destroy God's work at the rate we're doing it, and
the other living forms that we're annihilating at a terrific
So it's like we're getting some kind of feedback from the
cosmos that is awakening us to ourselves and how we're out of
balance in the web of nature.
GT: Thank you very much for your time.