…there are other legends that make clear that the gods were not necessarily physically here, and may not even be physical as such; they could best be described as a nonhuman, otherworldly intelligence that we can contact through a number of means, many of which would be classified today under the label of paranormal, parapsychological, or—and a term I prefer—metaphysical.
This is something I noticed especially in the Ancient Aliens episode “Aliens and the Undead” in which Coppens, along with David Childress and others, more or less told viewers that the aliens were gods living in a special quantum dimension that is essentially heaven and that if we are all good ancient astronaut theorists, then the quantum alien energy beings will take our “consciousness” (read: souls) across the energy bridge to the quantum dimension (read: heaven) to live with them in blessed harmony forever and ever, for theirs is the power and the glory, amen.
The aliens have ceased to be anything but the very gods they were proposed to replace, and the members of the current generation of ancient astronaut theorists are huckster prophets abetting a duplicitous religious revival. At least L. Ron Hubbard was honest enough to admit that his ancient astronauts (and their salvation-for-sale) were a substitute religion. Coppens should be honest enough to just say what he means: He thinks the pagan gods are real and that if we think really hard then Zeus or Marduk or Thor will come down out of the sky and give him presents.