A term floated in Ufology - high strangeness - has had me thinking. This term is so broad as to suck in every single thing that does not conform to our expectations of reality. That is anything beyond the modern world view. This is a pretty good rule of thumb as the realm of the impossible is always going to be a larger infinite set than the realm of the possible. But you are gonna get some collateral damage. And this leads to the confusion at that liminal space right between what we know and what we do not. Confusing the matter further, I do not think this space at the edge of reality is a spectrum - I think it is multidimensional.
Consider the additional factor of the limits of our imagination. Within this limit are the things we can imagine that are both possible and impossible. There are also things we are unable to imagine that are both possible, and impossible.
todo: venn diagram of the imaginable, and the possible.
Try to imagine something that is impossible to imagine. That thing might be possible.
We have many credible witnesses to seemingly impossible events. How can we overcome the limitations of imagination, and therefore of skepticism, to determine how these events might actually intersect with shared reality?
Here is where I would place the Ariel School encounter.
In 1994, over 60 children claim to have experienced an alien encounter. Their description of these alien beings aligns closely with the beings of our contemporary mythology. And their testimony is very compelling.
The default skeptical stance - that which allows us to collapse (and dismiss) the dissonance of unbelievable reports - is that this was a collective psychological episode, caused by the influence of adults including a prominent psychiatrist, leading to conformity amongst the descriptions and depictions of the encounter given by the children.
If we place a skeptical mirror up to this skeptical hypothesis, especially after viewing the children’s own contemporaneous video interviews - it is just such a fucking stretch - and we can apply our everyday understanding of the world to see this. The testimony of the children seems inarguably genuine, sincere, honest. The rarest of individuals would perceive these kids as not completely believing everything they say. It would take an evil genius to brainwash children into delivering such nuanced, perfectly imperfect, corroborating reports. Reports that they attest to two decades later.
But what else are we supposed to believe? - because the idea that creatures of our mythology actually exist is also completely unbelievable. How do we navigate this multidimensional truth-space? We are forced, kicking and screaming, to keep an open mind.