At last month’s UFO hearing in Congress, Rep. Mike Gallagher entered into the Congressional Record the so-called Admiral Wilson Memo, a dubious account of a supposed conversation between the former head of the DIA and longtime government-adjacent ufologist Eric Davis about crashed saucers and recovered aliens. Gallagher claimed to be new to ufology and looking for answers. On a podcast with Jonah Goldberg this week, Gallagher appeared to go full-alien, having discovered that being the alien guy is less problematic than having to defend toxic Republican policies. “There’s got to be a way to get to the bottom of this whole aliens thing. It’s driving me insane.”
American Cosmic author and ufology groupie Diana Pasulka made a rather extraordinary statement on the Theories of Everything podcast when she claimed that the Catholic Church engages in remote viewing and that the influence of Catholicism led ufologists from Jacques Vallée’s so-called “Invisible College” to take up the mantle of remote viewing and psychic powers. She cited the Catholic concept of “discernment” as proof of Catholic psychic investigation. “It’s not called remote viewing,” she said when asked if Catholics remote view, “but it's called ‘discernment.’ We’ve talked about people in the Invisible College, a lot of them being Catholics. I don’t know if all of them are, but most of them are.”
“Discernment” is decidedly not related to remote viewing. It is a Catholic practice of “discerning” the will of God through prayer, meditation, and conversations with faith leaders. It’s basically thinking really hard and waiting for inspiration. It has nothing to do with psychically spying on enemies or aliens.
As a religious scholar, Pasulka must know this. So, is she being intentionally disingenuous? Most researchers are aware that the “Invisible College” became interested in remote viewing because of Hal Puthoff, who learned the practice as a Scientologist in the 1960s. Puthoff not only learned of remote viewing from Hubbard’s sci-fi, space-alien faith but also claimed to have developed psychic remote viewing capabilities from Hubbard’s “technology”—the Scientology term for their religious practices. Pasulka is either intentionally covering up the Scientology connection or is gullible beyond even my expectations. For what it’s worth, she mentions Scientology only once in American Cosmic, and then only in passing, despite it being one of the most prominent extraterrestrial-themed religions in the world.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Esquire, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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