A vision of Christ in Firle

As lockdown restrictions begin to ease in England, we decide to go for our first pub lunch in four months to The Ram Inn, an historic 500-year old pub in Firle, East Sussex.

Ram Inn

Jeremy (with Covid crop and pint of Harvey’s) and Sophia at the Ram Inn. (Photo by Isabella Smith)

 

Firle is an attractive old village in the South Downs National Park, which manages to remain quite tranquil despite being just a few hundred yards off the ferociously busy main A27 road.  It sits below the high chalk escarpment of the South Downs, from which one can see the English Channel in the distance. The road to Firle from the A27 leads nowhere except to the village and up to Firle Beacon on the downs, so there is no through traffic to disturb the peace; and since there is no street lighting, no traffic signs or road markings, and no modern buildings, one can easily imagine that the village looks very much the same as it did in 1911, when Virginia Woolf took a house there for about a year.

Little Talland

Little Talland House, built in 1904, which Virginia Woolf rented in 1911, naming it after Talland House in St Ives, Cornwall, a place where she had spent many happy holidays in childhood.

After a pleasant lunch in The Ram Inn and a welcome pint of Harvey’s Best Bitter for me, we walked around Firle, passing Virginia Woolf’s house. In a letter describing it to her future husband Leonard, she said: “This is not a cottage, but a hideous suburban villa – I have to prepare people for the shock”. With due apologies to the present occupant, she was not wrong, it is the ugliest house in Firle; nevertheless, she invited members of the Bloomsbury Group and other friends from literature and the arts to visit her there, including Roger Fry, Adrian Stephen, Lytton Strachey, Desmond McCarthy, Leonard Woolf, Katherine Mansfield, Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell.

We strolled on, pausing only to buy some quails’ eggs from a display outside a house, with an honesty box for payment, and then came to Firle Post Office and general stores, which according to a sign above the door was established in 1780.

 

Firle+(13)

Firle Post Office, established in 1780. (Photo via Angela Bunt Creative) 

 

A little further on, we came to a long path between beech hedges which brought us to the West Door of St Peter’s Church. The present church dates from the 12th century, though it is likely that there have been varying forms of religious settlement on the site since Druidic times.

Inside the vestry, I am struck by a newspaper cutting displayed there, from the Daily Mirror of November 8th 1940, with the headline: “Shepherd Tells Of Vision In Sky”.  The article, “by a Special Correspondent”, tells such an intriguing tale that I can’t resist quoting from it extensively:

Daily Mirror

A cutting from the Daily Mirror dated 8th November 1940, which is displayed in the vestry of St Peter’s Church, Firle. Fred Fowler, the shepherd, is holding a Pyecombe hook, a special kind of shepherd’s crook made in the Sussex village of Pyecombe for use with the narrow-legged Southdown breed of sheep local to the area.

“Old Fred Fowler, sixty-six, lifted his weather-beaten face skywards and pointed west way above the highest peak of the Sussex downs. ‘It be there when I see it,’ he said. ‘There in the clear blue sky. A vision they calls it – it was the like of something which I never see before’. Then he said reverently, ‘It be Christ I see.’

Fred, who is a shepherd, lives in the village of Firle, near Lewes, Sussex. Yesterday the Daily Mirror told of how he and other villagers claimed to have seen a vision of Christ and six angels.

Fred told me the strange story himself. I joined him in his shelter of bracken on the downs. The biting wind blew round us. His two dogs, Bob and Watch, guarded his 150 sheep.

‘I never be one to see things’, said Fred. ‘I am alone too much for that. (…) I’d just rounded up the flock that morning – it be about eleven. I says to meself it’s a nice clear day and I looks up west at the sky. Then I sees it. It be like what they tells me the cinema is like, but I thinks it be more real. There came a kind of panel across the sky’.

‘Inside the panel of white there was a cross, with Christ, his head to one side, nailed on to it. Round him were six angels. I counted ‘em, and they wore white cloudy robes to the feet. I know it was to the feet because I even saw their feet. I even saw their toes’.

‘When I got to the village I knew what I had seen was really there. There were other people who had seen it, too. But mine’s a simple life – I just have me two dogs, me sheep and me missus way back at the cottage and I come to church on a Sunday. That’s all I sees or knows of life; that’s all I really want to see or know’.

‘I forgot,’ he smiled. ‘There’s my pint I always have of a night’.

‘Sometimes though, if I think of it all now, the vision I mean, I wonders whether it really was Christ come to help put our world straight again’.

Old Fred walked away into the distance with his sheep and dogs. He has never been to the cinema or even out of Sussex. I watched him pass into the distance and I almost envied Fred.

Back in the village I confirmed his story. There were two sisters, widows, evacuated from London, Mrs Grace Evans and Mrs E M Steer who had seen the vision, and also a neighbour, Mrs Stevens. ‘Actually, we must have seen it a second or so before the shepherd did’, Mrs Evans told me, ‘because when I first looked into the sky it was clear blue. Gradually I saw the panel of kind of white cloud appear. I called my sister because it looked so pretty, then all at once we saw the crucifix and Christ. I saw every detail, to the nails in his crossed feet and the angels rose around him’.

‘One held a harp, another an old-fashioned pitcher with two handles. It was as clear as a picture and then, when I had got over my surprise, I called my neighbour to see the wonderful sight’.

‘Yes’, said Mrs Steer, it was so real it almost frightened me. I am not one to imagine things, and I used to smile at the story about the Angels of Mons – I always thought the soldiers who saw them imagined things, but now I can believe it’.

I called to see the vicar, the Reverend A G Gregor.

‘I saw nothing’, he said, ‘and I think the whole thing is nonsense’.

 

However, the vicar of Firle’s neighbour, the Reverend JR Lawson, the vicar of Glynde, said in an article published a week later in the newspaper:

‘I think those people who say they saw the vision were too much in earnest to be discredited. After all, our Christian religion is based on the vision of Bethlehem, which was only seen by a few. Therefore, why should not the story of apparently quite earnest people living today be equally believed? I certainly think the vision was seen and I only wish I had seen it myself’.

 

This is a lovely story and reminds me of The Shepherds’ Play from the Oberufer Christmas plays, not just because of shepherds and angels but because of the simple faith of Fred Fowler. A shepherd’s life consists of tending, watching, minding and guarding his flock, all of which can be summed up in one word: caring. The risen Christ said to Peter, “Feed my sheep”, but the Vicar of Firle’s brusque dismissal of the story sounds as though he was rather in the same vein as Peter, who at first didn’t believe the tales of the women who had visited the tomb on that first Easter Day.

I should add that the present-day Vicar of Firle, the Reverend Peter Owen Jones, is a very different sort of person from the Reverend A G Gregor.

SSX MAY15 Peter Owen Jones

The Reverend Peter Owen Jones, Vicar of Firle. (Photo via Sussex Life)

Firle has other Bloomsbury Group associations besides Virginia Woolf; Charleston Farmhouse, which was the home of several Group members, is just a short distance from Firle. In the churchyard at Firle are found the graves of Vanessa Bell, Duncan Grant, Angelica Garnett (the only child of Vanessa and Duncan), Quentin Bell (art historian, author and biographer of his aunt Virginia Woolf, and the second son of Vanessa Bell by her husband, Clive Bell) and Quentin’s wife Anne Olivier Bell, whose five-volume edition of the diaries of Virginia Woolf is a superb work of scholarship and elucidation.

When we get home, Sophia reminds me of an interesting coincidence: the date of Fred Fowler’s vision of Christ in 1940 is very close to the introduction of the ‘Big Ben Silent Minute’ on the BBC on November 10th 1940. The Silent Minute was an initiative of the adept Wellesley Tudor Pole, in which people in Britain and throughout the Commonwealth were asked to devote one minute of their time at 9.00pm each evening to pray for peace and thus create a channel between the visible and subtle realms through which divine help and inspiration could be received. The prime minister, Winston Churchill, and King George VI, offered their support and accepted Tudor Pole’s suggestion that it should coincide with the chiming of Big Ben in London. On Remembrance Sunday, November 10th, 1940, the BBC broadcast the chimes of Big Ben as a signal for the Silent Minute. This then continued throughout the war years and on up until the late 1950s.

Did the Silent Minute offer some kind of help against the Nazis, in a similar way that Fred Fowler imagined Christ coming “to help put our world straight again”? In a letter to President Roosevelt dated August 11th 1953, Tudor Pole said the following:

“At the end of the War a Staff Officer of the German Intelligence Corps made this remark when under interrogation at British H.Q. in Germany: ‘During the war you had a secret weapon for which we could find no counter-measure and which we did not understand, but it was very powerful. It was associated with the striking of Big Ben at 9pm each evening. I believe you called it the ‘Silent Minute’.”

 

30 Comments

Filed under Firle, Silent Minute, Vision of Christ

30 responses to “A vision of Christ in Firle

  1. Dear Jeremy, I like you contribution about the vision in Firle – certainly quotable, even worthy of copying. I therefore ask permission to print in in the next issue of SouthernCrossReview.org (Sept.-Oct.) If you agree, I would include a link to your blog, and a short bio – not a requirement, but nice.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. jaromer

    Wonderful travelogue. Makes me quite homesick. Reminds me that there is no Harveys in Hamburg. Sad.
    A cheering read on a rainy day.

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  3. Steve Hale

    Jeremy, you had said this about Peter, and his dismissal of what the women had seen on Easter morning:

    “The risen Christ said to Peter, “Feed my sheep”, but the Vicar of Firle’s brusque dismissal of the story sounds as though he was rather in the vein of St. Peter, who didn’t believe the tales of the women who had visited the tomb on the first Easter Day.”

    According to the Gospel of John, it was quite different. Peter was outraced to the empty tomb, but left amazed, and anticipating what was to come.

    The Empty Tomb, Chapter 20
    Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, while it was still dark, and saw the stone already taken away from the tomb. 2 So she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him.” 3 So Peter and the other disciple went forth, and they were going to the tomb. 4 The two were running together; and the other disciple ran ahead faster than Peter and came to the tomb first; 5 and stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings lying there; but he did not go in. 6 And so Simon Peter also came, following him, and entered the tomb; and he saw the linen wrappings lying there, 7 and the face-cloth which had been on His head, not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself. 8 So the other disciple who had first come to the tomb then also entered, and he saw and believed. 9 For as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead. 10 So the disciples went away again to their own homes.

    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=john+20&version=NASB

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    • Not in John but in Luke, Chapter 24:
      1 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices which they had prepared. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they went in they did not find the body. 4 While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel; 5 and as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? 6 Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, 7 that the Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and on the third day rise.” 8 And they remembered his words, 9 and returning from the tomb they told all this to the eleven and to all the rest. 10 Now it was Mary Magdalene and Joanna and Mary the mother of James and the other women with them who told this to the apostles; 11 but these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.

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      • Steve Hale

        Luke 24 has Peter going to see for himself:

        11 But these words appeared to them as nonsense, and they would not believe them. 12 But Peter got up and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings only; and he went away to his home, marveling at what had happened.

        https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=luke+24&version=NASB

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        • I’ve slightly altered that passage, which now reads as follows: “the Vicar of Firle’s brusque dismissal of the story sounds as though he was rather in the same vein as Peter, who at first didn’t believe the tales of the women who had visited the tomb on that first Easter Day”.

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          • Steve Hale

            There is nothing to indicate that Peter did not at first believe the women. According to Luke 24, Peter “got up and ran to the tomb” in order to see for himself. He left amazed and in anticipation for what was to come.

            Now, here is the difference between the two accounts. The Gospel of John was written by an eyewitness, who was also a high initiate, and the Gospel of Luke was written using certain “spirit-seers”, and also the eyewitness in certain places. So, for example, the experience of Mary at the empty tomb in Luke is more of a kind of conglomeration then in the description given in John, where there are two discrete experiences. Mary first experiences the empty tomb and then runs to the disciples to tell them. They run to it and see that it is in fact empty, and then they leave. Then, Mary has her experience of the two angels in the empty tomb, and then the two Jesus men who she speaks to.

            So, Luke would combine these events, but John keeps them separate in order to make it clear what exactly took place.

            Thus, Jeremy, your slight alteration is noteworthy as being as next to negligible as nearly possible. Why did you even waste time on it?

            I bet I know the answer. It comes out of the British Folk Soul, but we can always adjust to that. America is in a unique position in which it both wants to rule the world, and also see it find the freedom in which we all evolve throughout the world. Only spiritual science can assuage that matter for us.

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  4. ininsoi

    Hi Jeremy,

    I appreciate this website and I liked this latest article. Quite apart from the amazing information that Christ and angels were seen over Sussex back in 1940 it was nice for those of us living far away from the UK to get to know you a little on a more personal level and see that you and Sophia have made it through the pandemic to the extent that you are now able to go on a little jaunt and enjoy a pub lunch, something I myself relish, especially after a country walk, when I’m in the UK.
    Here in the isolated Amazon jungle community of Sauce, San Martin province, Peru we are on a completely different timeline as the virus has just appeared this last week and now we have several neighbours who have tested positive for Covid-19. Needless to say my wife and I are keeping a low profile, rarely leaving the house and following all the suggested protocols.

    Thanks again for another interesting article.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Midnight Rambler

    Thanks Jeremy for sharing this Firle experience ! The shared vision of Christ and the 6 angels, the house of Virginia Woolf and the links with the 9.00pm “meditation” from Tudor Pole during the War led my thoughts to another vision.
    In 1954, thirteen years after the death of Virginia Woolf, W.H. Auden, one of our finest 20th century poets, published a portrait of the writer that featured an appraisal of a new edition of excerpts from her journals. They cover the period during which Woolf was labouring over some of her most significant works, including “Orlando,” “The Waves,” and “To the Lighthouse.” This study (“A Consciousness of Reality,”) is a thoughtful look at Woolf’s perspective on the creative process, its rewards and obstacles and her views on spirituality and how they may have influenced her writing.
    Auden had his own vision that shaped his life on a June evening in 1933 in the garden of Downs School in the Malvern Hills where he was a teacher. He called it a “vision of Agape”, but bearing in mind the date, maybe it was an experience of the etheric Christ ??
    “One fine summer night in June 1933 I was sitting on a lawn after dinner with three colleagues, two women and one man. We liked each other well enough but we were certainly not intimate friends, nor had any one of us a sexual interest in another. Incidentally, we had not drunk any alcohol. We were talking casually about everyday matters when, quite suddenly and unexpectedly, something happened. I felt myself invaded by a power which, though I consented to it, was irresistible and certainly not mine. For the
    first time in my life I knew exactly—because, thanks to the power, I was doing it—what it means to love one’s neighbour as oneself…. My personal feelings towards them were unchanged— they were still colleagues, not intimate friends—but I felt their existence as themselves to be of infinite value and rejoiced in it.
    Auden recounts at that moment he “realized with shame the many occasions on which I had been spiteful, snobbish, selfish, but the immediate joy was greater than the shame, for I knew that, so long as I was possessed by this spirit, it would be literally impossible for me deliberately to injure another human being.” The heightened feeling, he says, continued for roughly two hours, and lasted, in diminishing force, for two more days. “The memory of the experience has not prevented me from making use of others, grossly and often, but it has made it much more difficult for me to deceive myself about what I am up to when I do.”

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ininsoi

    An interesting small coincidence is that I was just recently sent my late uncle David Stevens’ memoirs in which he recounts that while attending the Agricultural College at Cirencester in the 1950’s he dated W.H. Auden’s niece.

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  7. Steve Hale

    Hi Jeremy,

    We should really get on to the larger issue contained in this post. It is not really about getting to go out and maybe feeling safe to experience the environment around us again. It is about something much more, and this requires no masks. Your blog evolved over some four years from its inception in 2014 to a kind of high resolution in 2018. At the midpoint in 2016, we had the Cameron resolution, and we know what that meant.

    Yet, let’s leave the Cameron resolution, and its defeat out of account right now, for the time being. It will always stand the test of time in terms of the British Folk Soul. What really becomes apparent is your own resolve to have a conference in which capitalism will be defeated in favor of a more simple plan of mutual cooperation. This is what I see in your pretty face, along with your wife sitting in the pub in Firle. I admire it. I love her glasses and open smile; Sophia. And your daughter, Isabella, must have been there too in order to snap the picture. What a beautiful name, Jeremy.

    Now, we should really look back on 2018 in respect to your blog. What did it contain back then? It was just two years ago. Well, it contained a kind of plethora from a member concerning certain sightings which could be acquainted with this very same appearance to the shepherd on 8 November 1940. Steiner had spoken before of what would began to occur in the 1880’s here:

    “Thus, since the eighties of the nineteenth century, heavenly beings are seeking to enter this earth existence. Just as the Vulcan men were the last to come down to earth, so Vulcan beings are now actually entering this earth existence. Heavenly beings are already here in our earth existence. And it is thanks to the fact that beings from beyond the earth are bringing messages down into this earthly existence that it is possible at all to have a comprehensive spiritual science today.”

    https://wn.rsarchive.org/Lectures/GA204/English/AP1987/19210513p02.html

    So, it only seems apparent that whatever occurred on 8 November 1940 was just such a sighting, as indicated. Now, go some 60 years into the future, and we arrive at the year 2000, which is not so long ago. Then, another eighteen years and we have our latest account, written right here on this blog!

    We really should review this because what you have dredged up from 1940 utterly fails in comparison to what was revealed right here in 2018. Yet, maybe because it was coming from America you didn’t want to hear it. This is what makes this reflection from your excursion to Firle even more quaint.

    Kind regards,

    Steve

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    • Hello Steve,
      Well, that’s the first time I’ve ever been told I have a pretty face! Usually, most comments are along the lines of “you’ve got a good face for radio”! 🙂

      Apart from the enchanting story of the shepherd seeing Christ and his angels in the sky, what I found intriguing about this 1940 account was the reaction of the vicar, the priest who supposedly mediates between Christ and his flock, who found the whole thing to be “nonsense”. As Hamlet told his student friend, “there are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy”.

      I’ve since found out a little more about this vicar, the Reverend A G Gregor, who was nearly hit by a German V1 rocket which came down on Firle. According to an account by Deborah Gage, “Firle was luckier than the area round Bexhill and Hastings, which bore the brunt of the V1s, but one that landed very near Firle blew out all the windows of Firle Place (the stately home of Viscount Gage and his family). It deafened the long-serving vicar, the Rev Andrew Gregor, who was sitting in a chalk pit, 100 yards below the point of impact; his bible was said to have been torn to shreds, but he survived the ordeal, retiring in 1946 after the war”.

      Best wishes,

      Jeremy

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  8. ininsoi

    Steve, I’m wondering how what you say above regarding Vulcan beings relates to the plethora of UFO sightings worldwide reported over the last several decades?

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    • Steve Hale

      Martin, the history of UFO sightings in the modern age goes back to the 1880’s! And if you read carefully what Steiner is indicating here in this lecture about Vulcan beings seeking to commune with human beings, and we are resisting them due to all the materialism, it can be seen that there is a relationship. They are perceived in material form. Even crop circles can be shown to be a manifestation of these beings, who are trying desperately to get our attention.

      Vulcan beings comprise the heavenly host of Michael who fought the battle in heaven and won in 1879. Since then, this host wants to stream down and make contact with us for our spiritual benefit, but they are being ignored. For 140 years they have been ignored when a great spiritual communion could have been taking place. Current history shows the consequences.

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  9. ininsoi

    So it seems Vulcan beings can take on many outward forms as they attempt to communicate with humanity, all the way from futuristic silver ‘saucers’ to religious images seen in the heavens. Would you say this continuum of differing manifestation is all just different ways that Vulcan beings are trying to engage our attention?

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    • Steve Hale

      Yes, I do. And most lately, the phenomenon of crop circles has arisen to challenge our perceptions. I would encourage you to read this blog essay and its corresponding comments from January 2019 on “free acts of love”, which is a really good signpost considering the dilemma we are all in today, just one year later.

      https://anthropopper.com/2019/01/

      It can be shown that true crop circles are a very fine means of healing regions that are experiencing ecological compromise wherein rural farmers must face the environmental consequences of atmospheric pollution. In this fine study, a correspondent revealed with keen insight and care for the matter, that incidences of crop circles in southern Ohio had exceeded the norm in reports from the International Crop Circle Research Association (ICCRA). This led to a further study in which it was found that real crop circles are miracles, which cannot be explained by sensible means. They have their source in the supersensible.

      And so, the aim of the Vulcan beings in seeking to commune with humanity seems to be of the nature of wanting to alleviate as much suffering as possible at a time in which they know that ahrimanic spirits have been thrust down upon the earth. They want to counteract these effects since the 1880’s. Thus, when materialism became most pronounced with the advent of the third millennium, they have taken to creating these extraordinary artistic formations seen in crop circles. But, the secret is that the circles contain spiritual forces that heal the region from the effects of the poisoning.

      Now, today, we have the pandemic in its active form, which twenty years ago was still benign. If the efforts of the Vulcan spirits, as well as those coming from the other planets had been listened to with real care and devotion, then this present crisis would have been nullified. Yet, it is waking the human spirit to become more alive that represents the stumbling block.

      And the Vulcans thought it would be easy to stream down in order to influence humans in a way that would guard against the downfall of the spirits of darkness. Then, they remembered what Christ experienced at the Temptation about how the ruler of the world, Ahriman, had a kind of chokehold on humanity, and how this so-called “ruler of the world” would last right up to the end of time.

      Steve

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  10. luke

    Sincere thanks for this, Jeremy.

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  11. ininsoi

    Steve, now you have me wonding about the alien abduction narrative studied by Harvard professor John Mack and others. What’s that all about? Could those be ahrimanic spirits rather than Vulcan beings?

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    • Steve Hale

      Yes, I think these would be both ahrimanic and luciferic spirits working in human beings. They both have worked over long ages in developing the human personality to what it is today.

      The difference is that the Vulcan spirits want to keep us close to the spiritual origins, and the ahrimanic spirits want us to continue to turn stones into bread. Steiner gave a pivotal lecture in which he tried to explain what was going on with these events.

      https://wn.rsarchive.org/Lectures/WrkAng_index.html

      Herein, he explains how inimical forces exist to undermine true spiritual perception, and how by the 1990’s it will become problematical. And haven’t we seen that by now, c. 2020?

      So, it seems that the UFO’s are still waiting for their day. Hopefully, they understand the human roadblock to their existence, and why. Of course, the existence of spiritual science in our time helps to alleviate any kind of misunderstanding, which helps those who can acquaint to this kind of science. Of course, with the others we can take all measures, and we have it in spades today. Going to Peru some fourteen years ago was likely a measure for the good of self preservation. Yet, it also works right here and now in one’s own place, with only words as the power to say something next.

      Who was it that said, “the pen is mightier than the sword”? Well, it hasn’t happened yet in our day and age. I would more than suggest that *that* means something important.

      Steve

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  12. P. B.

    It is the first time I read about UFO in the context of our society. But, let’s say that these things are real, with their ships, no one seems to know what to do with such an event. What strikes me is that people that want to expose the secret for all to see, being as they are and knowing only the physical world, for the most part, want to be discovering new forms of propulsion etc… They (UFO) are meant to move at a supersonic speed impossible to achieve by our planes and yet… No one notices that while doing so, no one report of hearing a sonic boom like jets make when breaking the sound barrier… This SHOULD make them think of the non-physical origin of the phenomenon.

    Anyways I am only rambling out loud. Plenty of food for thought.

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    • Steve Hale

      Please continue to ramble out loud, and on paper! Fortunately, this line of thinking was able to be continued offline, and where further revelations were able to be given concerning the work of the Angels. You see, UFO’s are real enough, but they can only be perceived in momentary states of natural clairvoyance, like daydreams. That is why many children see them coming out of the clouds as peculiar shapes. I remember in 5th grade, our class stood before a large window to the outside, and it was noteworthy that everyone in the class at some point in time while listening to the drone of the teacher, Mr. Wilfong, who loved to walk around the class and read out of a fact-filled book, would eventually be caught drifting off into a daydream. I was caught, even as I said that I would never be caught in order to experience the humiliation that Mr. Wilfong imposed. He would flick your ear with his index finger in order to get your attention again!! Very embarrassing, as it gave the class a laugh.

      Along with UFO’s, there is another phenomenon to contend with in this same field, i.e., so-called ‘abductions’. Now, the secret to “alien abductions” is that they represent the work of the angels in the etheric body, which has an entirely different effect. Rudolf Steiner describes it without actually knowing/giving the outcome that will occur by the year 2000:

      “Here lies the great danger for the age of the Spiritual Soul. This is what might still happen if, before the beginning of the third millennium, men were to refuse to turn to the spiritual life. The third millennium begins with the year 2000, so it is only a short time ahead of us. It might still happen that the aim of the Angels in their work would have to be achieved by means of the sleeping bodies of men — instead of through men wideawake. The Angels might still be compelled to withdraw their whole work from the astral body and to submerge it in the etheric body in order to bring it to fulfillment. But then, in his real being, man would have no part in it. It would have to be performed in the etheric body while man himself was not there, just because if he were there in the waking state, he would obstruct it.” GA 182, 9 October 1918

      This paragraph contains the key to so-called “alien encounters”. The Angels transfer their normal influence from the astral body, which is fitted to experience, through tone-consciousness, the music of the Angels. The etheric body, by receiving the input from the Angels, experiences upon awakening the distinct feeling that it has had an encounter with supersensible beings. Then, because the etheric body is meant to be asleep under normal conditions, a waking dream occurs and the remembrance is carried out in a somnambulant condition. This can be shown in the recorded testimony of Betty and Barney Hill, who underwent hypnotherapy for this type of occurrence in the early 1960’s, ref. The Interrupted Journey, by John G. Fuller.

      I think that if John Mack were alive he would be very interested in hearing the spiritual-scientific explanation of what these experiences are really all about. It proves that these extraterrestrials are actually Beings of the Higher Hierarchies. And, we experience them every night when we sleep. This is important knowledge for the Spiritual Soul Age.

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      • Pierre Belance

        Steve, along with this and I think linked to it in some ways is the misunderstandings about the phenomenon of sleep paralysis people experience, often just before they wake up. The explanations given by the usual channels are again, based on today’s main understanding of the world and not from a spiritual perspective. If it was then it could be approached with better solutions for it. What are your thoughts about this?

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        • Steve Hale

          We know, from a spiritual-scientific standpoint, that the fourfold individual separates at night when we sleep. The soul-spirit part (astral body-ego) withdraws and leaves the physical-etheric bodies in a plant-like state. This creates the paralysis until the ego and astral body return, with the ego entering the physical body, and the astral body entering the etheric body. Modern sleep research still knows little to nothing of this process.

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  13. ininsoi

    Steve, I appreciate you laying down an ahthroposophical perspective on the UFO phenomenon but the many instances of pilots seeing them seems at variance with what you say regarding observers being in a somnambulant state. Surely pilots are always in an alert, problem-solving state of consciousness. At least as a passenger I would hope so.

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    • Steve Hale

      The distinction has to be made, as indicated, between UFO’s as a phenomenon involving clairvoyance, and so-called “abductions”, in which a kind of waking dream is involved. In the waking dream, the experience of the angel in the etheric body is replayed.

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  14. Steve Hale

    I think the article about the shepherd who tells of the “vision in the sky” from the Daily Mirror, c. 8 November 1940, is the real thrust of this blog essay, and so it becomes possible to say more about strange lights in the sky and UFO’s, etc. In 1947, we have the now famous observations of Kenneth Arnold around Mount Rainier, Washington, in which “flying saucers” were seen. And this began the now well known NICAP studies on unusual aerial phenomena.

    Yet, in a still ‘to this day study’, Rudolf Steiner spoke about the real meaning and purpose for these developing observations. As such, we have to go back to 1880, some 60 years before the appearance in England in 1940. This material has all been related before from early in 2019, when a co-writer and personal biographer wrote here about important supernormal experiences that occurred involving crop circles in southern Ohio around 2004. So, Steiner’s revelation about a kind of spiritual communion involving extraterrestrial beings can be seen as not so “far fetched” as people are wont to see of it.

    https://wn.rsarchive.org/Lectures/GA204/English/AP1987/19210513p02.html

    Now, in consideration of the one hundred and forty years since this began in 1880, what can we as the human race surmise in our present time frame? Steiner clearly indicates it here in this lecture when he says that these beings are here to commune with the human race for the purpose of a spiritual betterment, but we choose to ignore them and continue to proceed on with our precious materialism. So, the results have finally arrived at the point of becoming rather drastic; drastically ridiculous would be the better saying. We have brought on the onslaught of our prevailing condition, but anthropoppers should have been aware of this eventuality by now already.

    So, here we are in our demise. Of course, Steiner said that promulgating spiritual science for our time was not going to be easy. Just look at what happened to him.

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  15. Judy Miller

    Dear Jeremy,
    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful, personal story. I am thoroughly moved, and I envy Fred too! How beautiful!
    Blessings, Judy.

    Like

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