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Vatican Looks for Signs of Alien Life

By ARIEL DAVID, AP

11/10/2009

Trial of GalileoVATICAN CITY (Nov. 10) – E.T. phone Rome. Four hundred years after it locked up Galileo for challenging the view that the Earth was the center of the universe, the Vatican has called in experts to study the possibility of extraterrestrial alien life and its implication for the Catholic Church.
“The questions of life’s origins and of whether life exists elsewhere in the universe are very suitable and deserve serious consideration,” said the Rev. Jose Gabriel Funes, an astronomer and director of the Vatican Observatory.
Funes, a Jesuit priest, presented the results Tuesday of a five-day conference that gathered astronomers, physicists, biologists and other experts to discuss the budding field of astrobiology — the study of the origin of life and its existence elsewhere in the cosmos.
Funes said the possibility of alien life raises “many philosophical and theological implications” but added that the gathering was mainly focused on the scientific perspective and how different disciplines can be used to explore the issue.
Chris Impey, an astronomy professor at the University of Arizona, said it was appropriate that the Vatican would host such a meeting.
“Both science and religion posit life as a special outcome of a vast and mostly inhospitable universe,” he told a news conference Tuesday. “There is a rich middle ground for dialogue between the practitioners of astrobiology and those who seek to understand the meaning of our existence in a biological universe.”
Thirty scientists, including non-Catholics, from the U.S., France, Britain, Switzerland, Italy and Chile attended the conference, called to explore among other issues “whether sentient life forms exist on other worlds.”
Funes set the stage for the conference a year ago when he discussed the possibility of alien life in an interview given prominence in the Vatican’s daily newspaper.
The Church of Rome’s views have shifted radically through the centuries since Italian philosopher Giordano Bruno was burned at the stake as a heretic in 1600 for speculating, among other ideas, that other worlds could be inhabited.
Scientists have discovered hundreds of planets outside our solar system — including 32 new ones announced recently by the European Space Agency. Impey said the discovery of alien life may be only a few years away.
“If biology is not unique to the Earth, or life elsewhere differs bio-chemically from our version, or we ever make contact with an intelligent species in the vastness of space, the implications for our self-image will be profound,” he said.
This is not the first time the Vatican has explored the issue of extraterrestrials: In 2005, its observatory brought together top researchers in the field for similar discussions.
In the interview last year, Funes told Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano that believing the universe may host aliens, even intelligent ones, does not contradict a faith in God.
“How can we rule out that life may have developed elsewhere?” Funes said in that interview.
“Just as there is a multitude of creatures on Earth, there could be other beings, even intelligent ones, created by God. This does not contradict our faith, because we cannot put limits on God’s creative freedom.”
Funes maintained that if intelligent beings were discovered, they would also be considered “part of creation.”
The Roman Catholic Church’s relationship with science has come a long way since Galileo was tried as a heretic in 1633 and forced to recant his finding that the Earth revolves around the sun. Church teaching at the time placed Earth at the center of the universe.
Today top clergy, including Funes, openly endorse scientific ideas like the Big Bang theory as a reasonable explanation for the creation of the universe. The theory says the universe began billions of years ago in the explosion of a single, super-dense point that contained all matter.
Earlier this year, the Vatican also sponsored a conference on evolution to mark the 150th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s “The Origin of Species.”
The event snubbed proponents of alternative theories, like creationism and intelligent design, which see a higher being rather than the undirected process of natural selection behind the evolution of species.
Still, there are divisions on the issues within the Catholic Church and within other religions, with some favoring creationism or intelligent design that could make it difficult to accept the concept of alien life.
Working with scientists to explore fundamental questions that are of interest to religion is in line with the teachings of Pope Benedict XVI, who has made strengthening the relationship between faith and reason a key aspect of his papacy.
Recent popes have been working to overcome the accusation that the church was hostile to science — a reputation grounded in the Galileo affair.
In 1992, Pope John Paul II declared the ruling against the astronomer was an error resulting from “tragic mutual incomprehension.”
The Vatican Museums opened an exhibit last month marking the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first celestial observations.
Tommaso Maccacaro, president of Italy’s national institute of astrophysics, said at the exhibit’s Oct. 13 opening that astronomy has had a major impact on the way we perceive ourselves.
“It was astronomical observations that let us understand that Earth (and man) don’t have a privileged position or role in the universe,” he said. “I ask myself what tools will we use in the next 400 years, and I ask what revolutions of understanding they’ll bring about, like resolving the mystery of our apparent cosmic solitude.”
The Vatican Observatory has also been at the forefront of efforts to bridge the gap between religion and science. Its scientist-clerics have generated top-notch research and its meteorite collection is considered one of the world’s best.
The observatory, founded by Pope Leo XIII in 1891, is based in Castel Gandolfo, a lakeside town in the hills outside Rome where the pope has his summer residence. It also conducts research at an observatory at the University of Arizona, in Tucson.
Associated Press writers Victor L. Simpson and Alessandra Rizzo contributed to this report.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. The information contained in the AP news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of The Associated Press. Active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.
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From the Hartford Courant

By Raphael G. Satter/Associated Press Writer

LONDON (AP) _ An American fighter pilot flying from an English air base at the height of the Cold War was ordered to open fire on a massive UFO that lit up his radar, according to an account published by Britain’s National Archives on Monday.

The fighter pilot said he was ordered to fire a full salvo of rockets at the UFO moving erratically over the North Sea — but that at the last minute the object picked up enormous speed and disappeared. The account, first published in Britain’s Daily Star newspaper more than 17 years ago and to this day unverified by military authorities, was one of many carried in the 1,500 pages the archives made available online.

The unnamed pilot said he and another airman were scrambled on the night of May 20, 1957 to intercept an unusual “bogey” on radars at a Royal Air Force Station Manston, an airfield at the southeastern tip of England about 75 miles from central London.

“This was a flying object with very unusual flight patterns,” the pilot said, according to a typed manuscript of his account mailed to Britain’s Ministry of Defense by a UFO enthusiast in 1988. “In the initial briefing it was suggested to us that the bogey actually was motionless for long intervals.”

Ordered to fly at full throttle in cloudy weather, the pilot said he was given the order to fire a volley of 24 rockets at the mysterious object.

“To be quite candid I almost (expletive) my pants!” the pilot said, saying he asked for confirmation — which he received.

Retired U.S. airman Milton Torres told Britain’s Sky News on Monday that he was the pilot and has spent 50 frustrating years attempting to uncover the truth of his mid-air encounter.

Speaking from his home in Miami, Florida, Torres said he never saw the UFO with his naked eye, but watched in awe as it appeared on his jet’s radar and sped off before he had chance to fire.

“All of a sudden as it was coming in, it decided to take off and leave me behind … The next thing I know it was gone,” Torres told Sky News. “It was some kind of space alien craft. It was so fast, it was so incredible … it was absolutely death defying.”

In the newly published government file, the U.S. airman said the UFO appeared impossible to miss.

“The blip was burning a hole in the radar with its incredible intensity,” the pilot said. “It was similar to a blip I had received from B-52’s and seemed to be a magnet of light. … I had a lock on that had the proportions of a flying aircraft carrier.”

As he closed in on the object to prepare for combat, however, the object began to move wildly before fading off his radar. The target gone, the mission was called off, and he returned to base to an odd reception.

“I had not the foggiest idea what had actually occurred, nor would anyone explain anything to me,” the pilot said. He said he was led to a man in civilian clothes, who “advised me that this would be considered highly classified and that I should not discuss it with anybody not even my commander.”

“He disappeared without so much as a goodbye and that was that, as far as I was concerned,” the pilot said, according to the account.

Britain’s military said it had no record of the incident, according to the files. Neither did the U.S. military. The second pilot’s account, also included in the files, paints a somewhat different picture of events, saying there were not one but several “unknowns” and that he did not remember being contacted by anyone about staying quiet. He did not mention the targets’ size.

“I know this is not a very exciting narrative but it is all I can recall,” the second pilot said.

His name, like his colleague’s, was redacted from the files.

David Clarke, a UFO expert who has worked with the National Archives on the document release, said it was one of the most intriguing stories he had culled from the batch of files released Monday.
He said that the CIA once had a program intended to create phantom signals on radar — and that this may have been an exercise in electronic warfare. Whatever the case, Clarke argued that “there’s no doubt something very unusual happened.”

Clarke said the batch of files released Monday — which include witness accounts, investigations, and sketches — was part of a three to four year program intended to make a total of 160 UFO-related files available to the public.

UFO sightings, 1986 – 1992

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John uploaded some new video last week that you may want to check out. In fact, you may want to check out some of his archive stuff while you are there.

http://abovespaceandtime.blip.tv/

This youtube video shows some great detail, of what, I don’t know, but detail nonetheless:

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More videos from John Lenard Walson who has been getting harassed ever since he started publishing his astounding pictures and videos. If he is getting harassed then there must be something that people don’t want other people to know, don’t you think? If these things didn’t have much significance or weren’t a ‘big deal’ then why is John Lenard Walson getting helicopters over his house and people following him? You can only surmise that John Lenard Walson is on to something and it looks to be something important

So as you view the following videos you have to wonder – what is John Lenard Walson capturing out there in our Earthly atmosphere?

Whatever these things are they look pretty big and they certainly come in different shapes and configurations. Should we be dazzled or repelled?

By the way, in order to get the full effect of the images it is suggested that you view these videos in full screen.

Don’t know if you caught the part where the smaller ‘craft’ maneuvered and settled down on the larger one in the previous video but here is a video showing just that portion:

More videos and another with a moon shot that I can’t find anything in (if anyone sees anything let me know):

Could these be interpreted as angels? Are they good or bad ones? And if they are angels, what does this signify for us??

Maybe these are merely man-made but pretty spectacular satellites… If they are man-made, who made them?? And how did they get them ‘up there’?

Or are these truly alien in nature? And if so, why are they hovering around in our atmosphere and what are they waiting for…??

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