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John E.

Mack

Passport to the Cosmos

Chapter I. Abduction: The Next Generation, p.17-18

Transformation and Spirituality

The third dimension of the abduction phenomenon might variously be defined as "consciousness
expanding," "growth engendering," or "spiritual." One of the most intense debates in this field
occurs around the question of whether these changes in the psyche of the experiencers – no
researchers seem to deny that such change, even transformation, does in fact occur in some cases –
is an intrinsic aspect of the phenomenon, even its "purpose" or "intention," or is instead a kind of by-
product, reflecting human creativity, resilience, and adaptability in the face of traumatic challenge,
or is even the result of alien trickery or deception.

How, some argue, can a phenomenon that is so clearly traumatic for many people, one that seems to
disregard human wishes, feelings, and morality, be spiritual in the sense of coming from a higher
source? Some experiences are even left with external and possibly internal organ scarring, as well as
lasting conscious and unconscious fears and phobias. Should not spiritual experiences be benign,
largely uplifting, or directly enlightening? Yet we know that some experiences, such as life-
threatening illnesses, tragic losses, and other personal crises, are often catalysts for profound
personal growth and transformation.
Furthermore, many spiritual disciplines, such as Zen Buddhism and shamanic initiations, include
harsh practices that confront the student with disturbing aspects of internal and external reality.
Some abduction experiencers describe openings and connections to what they variously describe as
the other world, Divine Light, Home, Source, or God, that leave little doubt in the minds of the
people who talk with them that something important has occurred. Whitley Strieber had been on a
path of transformation through the Gurdjieff Foundation before he became aware of his encounters
with the "visitors," as he calls them. When he told his Gurdjieff teacher about his experiences with
the beings, which had initially been intensely terrifying, the teacher said, "Fifteen seconds with those
people; fifteen years of meditation. You're very lucky" (Strieber 1987 and 1996b).

The apparent expansion of psychic or intuitive abilities, a heightened reverence for nature with the
feeling of having a life-preserving mission, the collapse of space/time perception, a sense of entering
other dimensions of reality or universes, the conviction of possessing a dual human/alien identity, a
feeling of connection with all of creation, and related transpersonal experiences – all are such
frequent features of the abduction phenomenon that I have come to feel that they are, at least
potentially, basic elements of the process. Indeed, the experiences of abductees may bring them to
something very much akin to shamanic or mystical states of mind, although for the most part the
experiencers remain deeply rooted in everyday "three-dimensional" life, a dilemma that sometimes
causes them a good deal of pain.

Even when abductees initially experience the beings themselves, especially the now well-known
gray figures with huge black eyes, as instigators of great fear and trauma, over time they may come
to see them as odd spirit guides, closer to the ultimate creative principle or Source than humans,
even as emissaries from Divine. Abductees also commonly experience a poignant sense that they
have themselves become too separated from Home, Source, or God and will cry and rage against the
fact that they have been incarnated or reincarnated back on Earth. As one man said, crying, "I just
want go Home. They will get me there. It's a gate, and I will go through it." Reluctantly,
experiencers will accept that they have made some sort of agreement with the beings or the Creator
itself to fulfill a human mission.