Friday

Hacking the Afterlife Podcast 17 - Edgar Cayce

Here's our latest podcast "Hacking the Afterlife #17"





Monday

"Close Encounters" of the Father's Day kind

J. Allan Hynek from "Close Encounters of the Third Kind"
On Father's Day,  I had the privilege of being invited to another "Beyond Belief" on Gaia TV, hosted by George Noory ("Coast to Coast")  (Show will air in a few months.)

I didn't know what we were going to discuss, I brought copies of both new books "Backstage Pass to the Flipside 3: Talking to the Afterlife with Jennifer Shaffer book three" and "Architecture of the Afterlife: The Flipside Code."

It's always a treat to talk to George Noory. He's an excellent interviewer, he's genuinely curious about whomever he has on the show. It's a rare quality and a treat to see him.


Caught him on the way home. 
George in the studio


At the Great Greek lunch
George asked a question about this interview - in it I interview J. Allan Hynek, who was a professor (briefly) at Northwestern, when "Sister Joel" - my science teacher in 7th grade invited him over to my house to talk to me about my science project. The project was "The Psychology and Therapy of Color" about how color as a frequency tends to influence how people perceive reality.  It won the State Science Fair that year, I was awarded a scholarship to the University of Illinois, but I knew even then that my interests lie elsewhere.

Here's a photograph of me in front of my science project.  I did surveys and asked people questions about their experience with color and focused on the scientific research that showed how certain colors affect prison populations (light blue was the most calming) or agitated individuals in hospitals. Basically how color as a frequency affects perception.  


Haven't changed a bit.

I don't know why "Sister Joel" knew J. Allan Hynek - Joel is a funny name for a nun, as her order (Polish/Chicago Sisters of St. Casimir) chose patron saints for some reason, and I always thought of her as being from Krypton (Jor-el). (The Sisters of St. Casimir dropped their male appelations in 1967 - she may have become "Sister Ann" after that.) Years later she left the order (our pal Bill Meyer kept in touch with her, but he's on the flipside, so hard for me to track her down. Maybe I should ask him.)

But she brought this august professor to my parent's home in Northbrook, and the three of us sat in our living room. Me, this 13 or 14 year old kid (I think the meeting took place in 1968, the project won the State Fair in 1969), this brainiac nun, who somehow knew the preeminent scientist in close encounters research. 
Meet J. Allen Hynek, the Astronomer Who First Classified UFO ...
J. Allan Hynek from Wikipedia.
I distinctly remember him smoking a pipe with cherry flavored tobacco. It was something professors did and whenever I was called upon to think of someone professorial, he'd pop into mind. Pipe smoking cliche.

But he came to mind while researching something for "Architecture of the Afterlife."  I thought - wait a second - I think I met this fellow 50 years ago.  And so, like I do sometimes, in a session, I brought his name up with Jennifer. She didn't know who he was - and I did some cursory research prior to the interview - but did not remember that he inspired the term "Close Encounters."  




On the "Beyond Belief" episode I filmed on Father's Day, I didn't know George was going to ask about J. Allan Hynek - or show a clip from this interview.  

So that was a fun question. 

"Did you actually speak to him?" George asked. I recalled the story above on air, meeting him in the late 60's. How it's "easier to connect with people on the flipside if you've met them." (Even if they might barely remember the encounter.)

But after the show, I flew back to Santa Monica, enjoying some Father's Day pizza, my wife Sherry insisted we watch "Close Encounters" on Showtime.  

At first I said - "I've already seen it" - not realizing that this was an entirely new edit. I did not know that J. Allan Hynek was an advisor on the film, nor did I know that he was in the film.  

We sat and watched "the original" director's cut - which is wildly different than the theatrical release... everything makes sense in this cut, opening with the government having an encounter. Just like the one that was recently released - it made much more sense, the idea that there were news conferences that were cut from the theatrical release gave the story context - all I can say is, "the film made sense" this time watching it. 

It's hard to believe I hadn't seen this "original cut" or the "director's cut" - because I thought I had seen the film. I had seen a different film that was at times difficult to follow and hard to care about. Not this time.

While watching the film, being aware of the research I've done ("Architecture of the Afterlife" includes a number of interviews with folks who claim to have either "had lives off planet" or with council members who have "never incarnated on the planet") gave the story a completely different perspective.  Yes - they have been trying to reach out to us, no we aren't capable of opening our awareness to them... yet.

And seeing the "ET's" at the end of the film appear this time around for me it's much more like "Oh, yeah, of course, I can't believe this was 1977, and we still haven't figured this out yet. I've talked to a bunch of these entities, and I'm not clear why no one else interviews them in the way I do. "What is it we need to know from you? And is it a cook book?" (Twilight Zone joke).

(By the way it was also fun to see my pal Carl Weathers in a clip trying to stop Richard Dreyfus in a brief cameo before he became a stuperstar - but I digress.)
Carl Weathers
"Where do you think you're going mister?"
  As I looked up some details of the film while watching, it, telling my wife about this visit from J. Allan Hynek - (1968 or 69, not 1967 as I say in the "Beyond Belief" clip) and was telling her "I remember, he smoked this pipe; as I talked he puffed on it, like Sherlock Holmes." 



But since I've directed a number of feature films (4) I also thought - "I'll bet if he worked as advisor Steven put him in the film somewhere" and sure enough, two minutes later,  there he was. (I now know that if you search for his name and use the title, this same photo appears on the net but I did not then). 

I recognized him instantly - not from any photograph of him, which I had not looked up prior to this viewing, but from my memory of him. I met him when he had brown hair - same beard, shape but thinner - and when he put the pipe in his mouth I jumped out of my chair.




It's one of those details that if you're not paying attention you miss. 

This fellow loved this pipe, had in 1968 when I interviewed him in my living room, still using it 11 years later when making a film with Steven Spielberg.

What are the odds that in the morning, on the Beyond Belief episode, George would ask me that question about J. Allan, and a few hours later, I would see J. Allan Hynek once again in my living room?

Astrofreakingnomical. 

Let's just say that the concept that "there is no such thing as coincidence" is likely the case. Since they exist "outside of time" - they have a better shot at getting the editor at "Beyond Belief" to choose this particular clip for George to comment on (I had no idea), that George Noory is friends with J. Allen's son ("Did I tell you, he's a friend of mine?" "No, George I didn't know that" live on air) and then for me to come home from this sojourn, sit on the couch with my wife on Father's Day and she says "Let's watch "Close Encounters."  I said - literally - "I've seen it, but okay, if you think so, let's." 

And then this new film I thought I'd seen but had not appears before me, completely different context, completely makes sense - honors the work of J. Allan Hynek, tells this story in the way that only Steven can with insight into human behavior, casting people who look real, seem honest, and we root for them. (The child who was kidnapped was a casting coup) and that Richard Dreyfus would replace him as the hero who goes off into the Joseph Campbell adventure. And... look, there's J. Allan Hynek with his pipe.

Boom. Freeze the frame. There he is. Again.

Of course I would watch that.  
Of course I would see that same face of a fellow who graced my living room 50 years ago. 
Of course I would interview him on the flipside about "aliens" if only to report that we are "all aliens" because we all choose to incarnate wherever it is we choose to do so.  
Of course. He is not gone. He's just not here. 

NOW YOU KNOW.

Just had to share this Father's Day tidbit.


On my way to the taping of Beyond Belief

Richard Martini is an award winning filmmaker who has written and or directed 8 theatrical feature films. He's a best selling author of books about the Afterlife, his books have all been to #1 in their genre at Amazon.  His latest book "Architecture of the Afterlife" has spent the past week at #1 in "new releases" in its genre at Audible. 

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