Friday, April 1, 2016

Notes on the Urubamba River - Machu Picchu - Peruvian UFO Sightings

Maggie Marbry, Photo of Urubamba River,
Top of the Peruvian Andes, 2000

"My friend Maggie Marbry took this photograph of the Urubamba River from the top of the Peruvian Andes. On that trip I learned that the Urubamba’s name in the Quechua language is 'Willkamayu,'..."

Notes on the Urubamba River - Machu Picchu - Extraterrestrials

My friend Maggie Marbry took this photograph of the Urubamba River from the top of the Peruvian Andes. On that trip I learned that the Urubamba’s name in the Quechua language is “Willkamayu,” which translates to “sacred river.” Such a designation sheds light on the reason Inca architects located the citadel of Machu Picchu 2000 feet directly above the river.

Machu Picchu in Peru. Image by Pedro Szekely

Maggie's picture of the silver toned Urubamba coheres, in my opinion, with Pablo Neruda’s 1945 poem “The Heights of Machu Picchu,” in which Neruda conflates descriptions of ascent to the ruins with allusions to an interior search. Among the poem’s disparate associations are the site’s astronomically aligned stone-architecture, its human builders, and the vultures that circle its craggy peaks, my translation by Nathaniel Tarn: “Mother of stone and sperm of condors, High reef of the human dawn.”

Come up with me, American love
Kiss these secret stones with me
The torrential silver of the Urubamba
makes the pollen fly to its golden cup.

I went to Peru to see its archaeological sites, but even more so, I was determined to discuss extraterrestrial sightings with Peruvians. In Peru, UFOs and extraterrestrial phenomenon are daily occurrences. There, nobody gets worked-up or weirded out over that subject. So I invited Peruvians who are warm friendly people to be my guest for beer and to discuss their experiences. (My favorite beer to knock back was Pilsen Callao.) Some people told me they see crafts come out of the lake, and go up in the sky. In a sense this narrative aligns with the ancient Andean mythology surrounding the creator-god Viracocha who made the earth, sky, and stars, and pulled the sun and moon out of an island in Lake Titicaca. One day I bought a beer-top opener with the image of Viracocha in a local market.

A memorable story came from a Peruvian archaeologist. While c
amping overnight near an archaeological site, he told me, he had an abduction-type experience. He said he saw a ship with lights, and woke the next morning to find himself quite a distance from the spot in which he had fallen asleep. Why did the extraterrestrials come, and why did they move him? He couldn't be sure, but believed, “they wanted to teach me certain things, and they did not want me to remember they had come to do that.”

The way I see it, the most important thing we can do is to try to understand UFOs and other paranormal experiences. Think about it. Humans have had mystical experiences and brushed up against the paranormal ever since the beginning, across all eras and cultures. UFOs, NDEs, OBEs, apparitions, and clairvoyance are universal experiences. These things are usually interpreted in religious and mythological terms. I'm inclined to think the answers relate to the true nature of consciousness, which we don't yet fully understand. Perhaps we never will. Maybe our present level of evolutionary development makes it impossible for us to know that which for instance Dr. Jacques Vallée suspects is a non human form of consciousness beyond space time that manipulates our physical environment. Might there be, as Dr. Jeffrey Kripal believes, a hidden dimension of the self beyond space time that is primarily, fundamentally consciousness, that shows itself in dreams, visions, apparitions, intuition, altered states and weird erotic energies. For Kripal, the self is a “vast unfathomable” presence that accounts for mystical experiences and sheds light on our cosmic immensity.

Twenty seven years ago, rather urgently, I flew off to yet another UFO conference, because Dr. John Mack was there. So was Whitley Strieber. Come hell or high water, I would be there. The impulse was impossible to explain. Particularly to my engineer-y spouse. “You’re going where?” Pulitzer prize winning biographer and Harvard Medical School professor of psychiatry Dr. John Mack didn’t spend a lot of time worrying about if UFOs and abductions were real. He cared instead about their effects. Mack likened them to Near Death experiences and apparitions of the Virgin Mary, events that seemed anchored in otherworldly invisible realms, yet crossed over into our physical world. He wondered if they were designed to shatter our materialist world view and open our consciousness to a larger view of reality. Expanded consciousness might reveal a multi-dimensional universe in which unfamiliar entities, energies and beings exist. In other words, a non-ordinary state of consciousness that included a UFO opens us up to better knowing our cosmic nature. John Mack was tragically run over by a truck and killed in London in 2004.

I have no conscious memory of seeing UFOs, but they come quite dramatically in my dreams. An unforgettable dream has me alone in an empty street watching an enormous light-filled UFO rotate above. "Come out," I scream in frustration at people hiding afraid in their houses. "Come out. This is as important as anything in your churches." The craft becomes increasingly smaller as it descends and is the size of a pin-head by the time it lands on the tip of my middle finger. The object, which pushes my finger down a few inches, penetrates into my skin, and all I can see is a tiny drop of blood. Was it a dream? I wake up looking at my middle finger, the pressure I felt on it was not dream like, and knowing in some ways I'm connected to the object. And to the cosmos.

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