Alien abduction is a phenomenon that many have claimed to have experienced. People who claim to have experienced this phenomenon described the aliens as short with grays skin, frail bodies, large heads with large black eyes, no fur or hair and no visible genitalia. They say that they aliens take them into their crafts, experiment on them and even molest them.
Most people who claim to have been abducted by aliens sincerely believe they have been abducted by aliens and they are not crazy, nor stupid.
But if they are not crazy or lying then does that mean the experiences are real? Not necessarily. We must look at alien abduction phenomenon the same way we look at all extraordinary claims; with a skeptical eye.
The thing we need to ask for is evidence but before that; somethings we must keep in mind. When talking about evidence we need to keep Occam’s Razor in mind. What is Occam’s Razer? “Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate” or “plurality should not be posited without necessity.” in plain english: “all things being equal the possibility with the requires the fewest assumptions and fewest entities is most likely correct.” We must also keep in mind what constitutes evidence; anecdotes are not evidence, a story is not enough to be considered evidence even if you believe everything you are saying. What is needed is hard physical evidence, something that can be examined, tested and objectively verified.
It is at this point we run into a huge wall: the lack of physical evidence and what evidence is given can not pass Occam’s Razor. Does that mean alien abductions are not real? A lack of evidence is not evidence of absence however a lack of evidence when there should be evidence is. Maybe these aliens are very smart and are very good at hiding evidence? That renders the claims unfalsifiable and thus no better than claims that we live in the Matrix.
There is more than the lack of evidence that throws doubts on alien abduction claims.
The universe is big, really, really big. The nearest star is Proxima Centauri and it is a little over 4 lightyears away and that is a reddwarf. The nearest stars (4.3 lightyears away) like our sun are Alpha Centauri A and B but they are in a binary system. Epsilon Eridani is the nearest sun like star that is not in a binary system and thats 10 lightyears away.
Space is very big and going at any speed less the the speed of light (299,792,458 meters a second) is slow. The problem is: Relativity tells us that we can not go faster than the speed of light. Yes aliens could have some form of faster than light or worm whole technology but thats pure speculation. Currant science tells us we can not go faster than the speed of light and any speculation on how we could move faster than light is purely that; speculation. In the end faster than light travel or any shortcuts may very well be impossible, we will never know until the technology is actually developed.
Then there are the aliens them selves; such creatures are improbable if not impossible. Their thin, frail bodies would be to weak to survive in earths gravity. Their heads are huge in comparison to their bodies, too huge to be held up by their tiny necks.
Their bodies are paradoxical. They have large eyes indicative of low light but they lack the fur and blubber needed to protect them selfs from the cold a low light environment would have.
Another improbable aspect of their bodies: they are humanoid. There are a myriad of possible body shapes (particularly when you take into account the myriad of different environmental conditions on earth and the environmental conditions other habitable planets could have). Why would they evolve to look like us?
The humanoid shape and exaggerated features look like a caricature of humans. Like something inhuman but not quite inhuman. Something some one could easily come up with with out much thought or something you would find in a science fiction TV show.
Historically there have been stories of demons who kidnap, rape people etc. The most well known of these are incubi who rape woman and succubi who rape men. The stories of these demons in many ways parallel stories of alien abductions. Even people who believe in alien abduction admit this.
In the 1980’s there was a large scare over satanic ritual abuse. There where many cases of alleged horrific abuse by alleged satanists. The government took notice and investigated the alleged satanic ritual abuses. They found no evidence of satanic ritual abuses. Whats worse for the idea of satanic ritual abuse: satanism as practiced by satanists is not the mythological worshiping of the Christian devil and it doesn’t involve sacrifices or murder. Most satanists are LaVeyan satanists who don’t even believe in Satan, they use satan as a symbol (don’t ask, I don’t get it either). Theistic satanists typically view Satan as the good one and Yahweh as the evil one and they view Satan as a deity not a rebel angel.
If these things didn’t happen then why do people remember them? Most alien abduction memories are “recovered” under hypnoses. Recovering memories under hypnoses has been shown to be able to produce false memories and people who go to these hypnotists already believe that they have been abducted by aliens or believe they might have been abducted by aliens so they are already predisposed to forming those memories.
Hypnoses is not alone, another source of false memories could be the brain it self. The brain can take fragments of unrelated memories and string them together into a single memory of an event that may not have happened and if did will not be remembered accurately. The brain can create memories of events that never actually happened but you believed you actually experienced.
Sleep paralysis is a condition that occurs just before waking up or going to sleep. When you enter REM sleep your body paralyses it self (so you don’t act out your dreams), it is in this faze of sleep that dreams occur. In a sleep paralysis episode you are awake but unable to move or speak and sleep paralysis episodes can involve hallucinations (dreaming while awake).
The alien abduction phenomenon can be explained with mundane and evidence backed explanations with no need for additional assumptions and entities. Until there is real physical evidence there is no reason to assume aliens are abducting people.
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1. Alien Abduction Case Files
2. Skepdic – Occam’s razor
3. Alpha and Proxima Centauri
4. Epsilon Eridani
5. Alien Abductions Through The Ages
6. Satanic Ritual Abuse (SRA)
7. Religious Satanism
9. Hypnosis May Cause False Memories
10. Creating False Memories
11. Sleep Paralysis
12. Medicine.net – Definition of Sleep paralysis
Wikipedia – Alien Abduction
Skepdic – Alien abduction
Skeptical Inquirer – Close Encounters with Alien Abductions
Alien Abduction Case Files
Best Cases of Alien Abduction