Saturday, December 15, 2012

Paranormal Fiction

Well, I've reopened this blog and yet I didn't post something new. Like half of my other blogs anyway. Some say, I shouldn't have so many blogs, or split my interests in several of them. Well, I will stick with it now, maybe in the future I am more into paranormal stuff than computers or psychology and have more to say here. And I will inaugurate the reopening of this blog with a new small post.

They have asked me why I am so much into paranormal and UFOs. Some wonder why I don't read sci-fi instead? Reading the next conspiracy theory is a waste but reading sci-fi isn't they say. I disagree.

I discover that I am not much into reading as many sci-fi or fantasy books as my geeky image would require. I might have some favorites but I am not much into it or I don't have much time to read everything. But the books that have hooked me most are books based on reality. I could read a scientific or philosophical book (but I still don't read enough, I couldn't easily name some favorites) or books on the paranormal or conspiracy theories. The later is like a mix of sci-fi/fantasy with clues (even if made up) that those things could exist. This is what hooks me so much! It's not so addictive when I read a book I know it's fiction. I am not impressed by the energy source of the Enterprise or the magic powers of Gandalf or whatever when I know it's made up and you can make up everything. Sometimes I prefer to see sci-fi or fantasy in a movie and still I want something more thoughtful and that's why I really like Star Trek the next generation compared to Star Wars which looks like a fairy tale to me. Star Trek is about the philosophical thoughts and not the futuristic.

But going back to the subject, the paranormal has lost it's credibility. If you are into it you might be a lunatic. Or, if you want to present yourself as a very smart person, you have to get away from it. That is the stereotype. But for me, the best way to see it now is like reading the most extraordinary fiction, one that tries to mangle reality with fantasy. Don't take things for granted but imagine how amazing it would be if some of these things have really happened. In fact, the more I get into it, the more I practice my critical thinking. That sounds like a paradox. But this is just me, I don't belong to the believers or the skeptics, so I can be more careful without trying to belong in either side. The more I approach it, the more I try to stretch my skepticism too. Because the most extraordinary things could possibly stay, when every other alternative is eliminated (to paraphrase Sherlock Holmes). Observing all different positions, eliminating what cannot be presumed, really staying with what one could really assume with a very high probability. I like this. It really stretches my brain. In the meanwhile I learn by my mistakes, I start observing how believers or skeptics work, how conspiracy theorists manipulate data and present you things in such a way that it's highly believable yet when you hear the story from the debunker's side you immediately feel the same way about non-existence.

Needless to say, one way why the paranormal world is a world mangling reality with myth, why I keep this view of  looking at the mysteries as fiction that pass as reality, hooking you more, this is the world of the entertainer and his audience. This is the same as a magician performing tricks seemingly impossible but then we are educated that they are just tricks and that person has not sold his soul to the devil or something. But in the world of conspiracies and paranormal we don't think like this. Yet observe, investigate and you will see that the stories are told in such a way and with only some pieces of the data presented as to construct that really persuasive fictional reality. Maybe not all of the people who spread the stories are hoaxers, maybe some really believe in these stuff, in such a way that they omit data and keep those that fit their story best, unwillingly. I imagine a big matrix of neomythologies in the modern world, urban legends, conspiracies, stories from mouth to mouth and also from networks of people to other organized networks, where some of the people might want to gain money yet most other perpetuate the mystery because they want to believe. It's like we have all created a mystery to entertain ourselves. A collective world that intermixes paranormality and the everyday life.

I was saying sometimes that I hate seeing myself just reading more of these stuff. I mean,. what I need to do is explore, let the books away and actually travel to those places where several UFOs have been seen, stare for 4 hours at the night sky (it's very relaxing actually), visit a supposedly haunted house, talk to people, join an exploration group, try strange experiments, really get into these stuff. Though, the fiction could still go on even when visiting the places, one could still imagine things because of wishful thinking, but I believe it would be interesting with myself, because I am such a doubt machine. And no, doubt machine is not one who is already certain that all these stories are bullshit and denies them at first sight. It's neither a debunker nor a believer. I like my stretchy skepticism while keeping the faith. Those opposite forces each correcting the other. Anyway, what would that be, if I went out and explored, not just read about these stuff in books but investigate them? Maybe I would find nothing. Or I would think I've noticed something and then my imagination would create a live fiction. Live fiction, like live action RPGs :)

So, I am still into it. Learning. Thinking about it. Stretching my mental powers. Living through it. Even if just with books. This is much better for me than any classy sci-fi book where you know the protagonist lives and wins. Where is the suspense in this?

Paranormality can really be thought as entertainment. Not many have made this assumption. I don't remember if or when I have heard this one from another person. We are the audience and conspiracy theorists, authors, paranormal journalist, UFOlogists, investigating groups, organizations, whether honest or not, they are the entertainers. Humanity creates it's own reality. Urban legends, modern myths, extraordinary stories, we crave for them and others like to tell stories and inspire (or make some extra bucks :).

p.s. Few days before that freaking day where everyone jokes about or waits for something extraordinary to happen. I don't believe something will happen (except if you believe that the collective consciousness of the world could somehow affect reality... well it's already affecting us anyway when we talk about it) but sometimes I joke that billions of people who expected their lives to change will be so disappointed the next day that they will go berserk and bring chaos and destruction. A self-fulfilling prophecy indeed ;)

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