In the newsletter, Strieber writes that he got into it with Pinchbeck:
Wow, mild-mannered Whitley gets into a verbal tussle with a guest, and it is INTENSE! Never happened before, in all of his seven years of doing Dreamland, but this one is a corker, as he argues with Daniel Pinchbeck, author of 2012: the Return of Quetzalcoatl.
The argument starts when Daniel suggests that negative views of the future may actually CAUSE negative things to happen. This leads into a fascinating and revealing battle about whether or not Whitley is in league with aliens who do not have the best interests of mankind at heart.
I haven’t heard the interview, so can’t comment on that. But I’ve often wondered about that point made by Pinchbeck: that our negative thoughts, fears, anxieties, acceptance and apathy -- a sort of resignation of the “dismal” future -- doesn’t in fact influence that future.
I think so. The power of “prayer” (and god knows I don’t mean praying to baby jesus, but you all know what I mean) and intent is not to be dismissed so easily.
On the other hand, there’s a danger to this type of thinking. The flip side of this is the happy go lucky, naive, idiots who can’t see or smell the crap that’s flying all around them, they’re so damn happy go lucky New Age little fluff bunnies. That kind drives me crazy.
Oh, back to the “smack down.” Apparently Pinchbeck accused Whitley of being in cahoots with the evil aliens:
Here's an excerpt from the journal: "He accused me of being in league with dark alien forces that do not have the best interests of the human species at heart. He said that I was spreading a dark view of the human future and that, by doing so, I was helping them make it come true."
Whitley defends his relationship with the beings, and once again gives his reasons for what they do what they do:
I have addressed the reasons for the secrecy in these pages a number of times. There are three main ones: first, the visitors would destroy our free will if they exposed us to their knowledge and technology; second, we—in the form of our governments—have reacted to them by doing what we can to hide their presence, and they have respected that; third, the physics of contact are very, very difficult, and unless it is handled by two species who understand its inherent dangers and can cope with them, there is danger that the less-informed species will, essentially, have its access to reality deranged so badly that it will go mad.
That’s his experience, and I can’t, and won’t, deny what he’s been through. I wouldn’t do that to anyone who so willingly shares their personal journey with all this . . . whatever it is.
But several things occur to me and raise questions: for one thing, the “aliens” Whitley’s encountered, whoever, whatever, they may be, are only one of so many types of entities that play with our heads. Or even one manifestation of One Big Thing that presents several variations to humanity.
That part of “free will,” that may be, I dunno. But it’s uncomfortably close -- too damn close for my tastes -- to religion, and a bit more specifically, Catholicism. (Strieber’s a Catholic; coincidence? One thinks not.) It seems these beings -- and I have no doubt at all that these beings are “real” and have been playing with Strieber for a long time -- are “using” him, as they use all of us.
I realize this is easy for me to say; I’m not Strieber, I haven’t experienced what he’s experienced, and I can only offer my unasked for opinion which is pretty much what we all do, so take it with a grain of salt, or, not.
I also question the idea that we’d “go mad” if we knew the truth, I just don’t think we would. Oh, some of us would, no doubt, but that’s not enough to excuse the spindly little beings’ behavior. They’re messing with us, and they need to take responsibility, or get over themselves. Okay, that last bit was over the top, pretty smug on my part. Like they’re going to listen to me. Besides which, they’ll never do any such thing; they’re of the Trickster, and therefore, they’re only doing what they do.
Whitley says, of Pinchbeck’s criticism:
I say in the program that I believe that mankind is going to experience a dieback, and this makes Pinchbeck furious because he fears that just by saying something like that, it will become true. I don’t want to put words in another man’s mouth, but I had the impression that he sees me as a sort of viral particle of negativism, and that my perspective is designed to bring on the destructions of which I warn—presumably, so that my evil alien masters can inherit the ruined planet, I suppose.
Whitley's last line trivializes what I think Pinchbeck was getting at. The point seems to be this: putting out there, almost gleefully in some cases (Major Ed Dames, etc.) the end of world in 2012, etc. can help create such a scenario. Again, this doesn’t mean we are to ignore the horrific situation we’re in now, let alone the future. Forget the future, think about right goddamn now. And then do something about it.
Strieber continues to explain their (the aliens) intentions:
What is so silly about this is the idea that they would want our planet, our bodies, our souls, our genes or anything we have. Are you ready to run off to the Congo to get their cassava? I don’t think so. But you might be moved to go there to help relieve their suffering, even if they have nothing to give you in return.
Many adepts, esoteric researchers, and so on have suggested that “they” are indeed some type of soul eater, or collector; anyway, how in hell can anyone say what “they” want? Simply because these beings say a thing, doesn’t make it so. Putting that mantle of altruism, no matter how harsh it may seem to us lowly poor ignorant humans, again reeks of the religious, and namely, Catholicism.
But then Whitley goes into denial, or some kind of contradiction (or, maybe it’s me; I’m just not getting quite getting it.)
The history of intelligent life in the universe is not a history of magic. It is not about god-beings and mysterious galactic superminds playing in the lives of their wretched planetary underlings. Our gods are in our minds.
Rather, it is a history of what it is like to live in a place that is by the nature of its structure, damn dangerous.
Many intelligent species have become extinct simply because their planet has taken a hit at the wrong moment, or their star has burped a little too forcefully. Just at random. They’ve gone down, no doubt, calling on their gods and cursing their gods, and begging forgiveness for sins that never mattered at all.
One of the great problems that our present visitors face is that they have attained something close to absolute knowledge, and so they know, in advance, where most of these accidents are going to happen. They also know that they can prevent some of them. They live with a terrific ethical quandary: should they? If a species is ugly and probably going to kill itself off anyway, should they just let some cosmic accident happen, or should they quietly intervene, in the deep of space, and redirect that asteroid, or quiet the turmoil in a star?
I don’t know. Really, I don’t. It just sounds so damn . . . Space Brother- ish, really. More articulate, better presented, but still, much of it is the same old god comes down from above and saves us all story. We're telling the story better, but it seems we need to rewrite the stories entirely, not just retell them.
Whitley speaks of a “bell curve” and this is why he believes what he believes, as far as the end of the world coming:
Pinchbeck is right about me in one respect. I do think that there’s going to be a dieback of the human species, and I do not think that anything can be done to avoid it. Certainly, it can be ameliorated and even, to an extent, controlled, but it is going to happen.
The reason that I’m sure of this could not be more simple. In nature, there is a formation called a bell curve. When the ascending shoulder of a bell curve develops, the descending shoulder follows. Nothing goes up for ever. Entropy always sets in. It must. That’s the way that physics works. I said it on the show—at least, I think I did—and it’s worth repeating here. Nature is numbers. It’s math, pure and simple.
Strieber gets even more religious, and I’m not attacking him for that; I just disagree with the interpretation and what I perceive as an ultimately naive view of things. For example, he discusses Mother Teresa, who, as readers probably know, struggled with the question of “God,” of her faith, etc. I don’t see what the issue is; maybe it’s because, being raised partly in a Jewish tradition, “wrestling with god” is to be expected. Questioning, asking, arguing, debating, wondering, -- it’s only logical. I don’t find it disturbing in the least a religious or spiritual person would “struggle” -- I would hope they would.
In this respect, it doesn't matter I haven’t heard the interview, for the questions and points raised by these juxtapositions of negative thought vs. positive thought, naivety, belief, faith, trust in the messenger, as well as the message, are important ones. They’re vital to our future, as well as our present.