The nature of the encounter and our perception of the beings encountered has evolved over the course of human history. The appearance of such entities has morphed over time to reflect the culture’s current sophistication of understanding. More concisely, new metaphors for describing these entities encountered… supplanted the old. In ancient times, fairies communicated with our ancestors. In medieval times, incubi or succubi haunted our sleep… even paralyzing us and initiating sexual experimentation upon us.
In the early part of the last century, a new metaphor began to surface, like a U-boat’s periscope, above the waters of our collective unconscious. This metaphor reflected our emerging global industrial and scientific understanding and sophistication. Balls of light that at one time may have passed for angels became popularly known, by the WWII pilots who observed them, as “Foo Fighters.” After the War, these phenomena were observed more frequently. A now famous sighting near Washington State’s Mount Raineer in 1947 by pilot Kenneth Arnold popularized the term “flying saucer” in humanity’s newly global consciousness.