by Richard J. Boylan, Ph.D.
A synopsis of extraterrestrial theology is presented, synthesized from information communicated by extraterrestrials to humans during close encounters. These are the extraterrestrial races actually visiting the Earth, and may apply to other member cultures of their interstellar political-cultural alliance, sometimes labeled the Interstellar Federation. This synopsis draws from a database constructed from 1989-present by Richard Boylan, research behavioral scientist and cultural anthropologist with graduate training in theology and philosophy. This database comes from in-depth debriefings of more than 180 experiencers. Those data provide the foundation for this analysis of the extraterrestrials' theological views.
The following theological topics are discussed: the extraterrestrials' acknowledgment of, and ideas about, God; whether intelligent life is hierarchical or egalitarian; the ETs' spiritual mission; whether ETs are spiritual gurus; the ETs' role in human development; the ETs, Avatars and religious inspiration; ETs' views on death and judgment versus reincarnation; sin and the existence of evil; Creation and evolution; whether Redemption is universal; and the ETs' ideas about God's family. The presentation concludes with an examination of possible human reactions to the visiting extraterrestrials' spiritual cultures.
This synopsis is constructed from data from more than 180 in-depth interview debriefings with experiencers of extraterrestrial contact (Boylan, 1994). The analysis and synthesis are the author's best distillation of that data.
It should be borne in mind that it is the nature of extraterrestrial communications that, in the overwhelming majority of instances, extraterrestrials communicate with humans by telepathic transfer of mental images or concepts, rather than by words or speech. Thus, there inherently is some human interpretation of the mental impressions transmitted by an extraterrestrial (ET). Nevertheless, certain core ET concepts, upon which this synopsis is based, are consistently reported by many different experiencers, lending confidence to the analysis and synopsis.
1. "God." The extraterrestrial races who have commented on the concept of "God" in answer to experiencers' questions, or who have brought the subject up themselves, uniformly affirm that they, too accept the reality of what Earthlings call God. However, the God they affirm is not the anthropomorphic or patriarchal figure of many Earth religions, but more of a Supreme Source [not ET vocabulary] a transcendent matrix of Consciousness, which underlies everything, and is that which gives essence and specificity to everything, which in turn is a partial manifestation of the Supreme Source. In more experiential terms, the ETs have taken experiencers and shown them "God." The experiencers typically described being in the presence of intense, overwhelmingly brilliant light from which emanates incredibly intense love, such that the experiencer feels lost in the infinite love. The ETs typically do not make extended commentary about "God," but either assure the experiencer that they too accept "God." Or they seem to let the direct experience of God speak for itself. The ETs have, when confronted with human confusion about whether they are gods, emphatically clarified that they are not God.
2. Extraterrestrial "superiority." The issue of the visiting extraterrestrial races' intellectual, cultural, genetic, technological and spiritual superiority, while not specifically a theological topic, bears discussing, because of the metaphysical implications. The average member of the visiting extraterrestrial races appears to manifest considerably higher intellectual capability than the average human. Such superiority may be partly due to education, culture, genetic engineering, or natural selection. Yet most extraterrestrials consider humans as equals in the sense of being a fellow sentient, conscious intelligent life form. Most of the ET races appear to be genetically advanced, as measured by more developed mental processes, sensory acuteness, para-psychological abilities, immune system robustness, reported longevity, and sophisticated nutritional processes. And without question, all visiting ET cultures are more technologically advanced than we are. Their very ability to jump across vast interstellar space and/or dimensions is but one example of ET technological superiority. Culturally, the ET races uniformly appear more advanced, as measured by the complex yet harmoniously interdependent functioning of their societies, absence of initiation of aggression, absence of warlike activities, the presence of altruistic concern for the Earth, its ecosystems and for humankind, the general absence of patronizing attitudes toward the more primitive human culture, and the ETs' holding to elevated philosophical and moral principles (Boylan, 1996). The ETs demonstrate highly developed spirituality, as evidenced by the integration of spiritual awareness into their cultures, the absence of formalistic religious practices, broad compassionate attitude between cultures, and a highly developed culture of concern for souls' development across lifetimes.
3. The ETs' spiritual mission. While the ETs have several missions which they are accomplishing by their gradually intensifying contact with the Earth, let us consider here just their spiritual mission. ETs have repeatedly communicated to experiencers about the need to remember their (the human's) origin. Often the "forgetful" human has been shown their existence as a spark of consciousness preexisting before this lifetime. In other instances, ETs have shown humans previous lifetimes, during which the human processed experiences which offered the human the opportunity for spiritual development. Often the ETs have shown experiencers glimpses of a common origin with one or other extraterrestrial race group. This suggests cosmically broadened understandings of family, mutual concern and cherishing across star systems and lifetimes. In the present, ETs typically demonstrate respect for Earthlings as fellow conscious entities. The ETs have done considerable spiritual teaching during in person encounters, touching on such subjects as the nature of life, metaphysical understanding of the nature of the cosmos, and a spiritually enlightened understanding of the community of intelligent life forms.
4. Are ETs spiritual gurus? The sight of some Extraterrestrials, especially the luminous and non-corporeal ones, have prompted some humans who have come into their presence to consider these ETs god-like, and to ask if they should be venerated. Uniformly the extraterrestrials have quickly communicated to the human that they are not God, indeed that they, too recognize a supreme being. The ETs express that they see their role as, and indeed act as, catalysts and facilitators for growth in human consciousness and awareness. As Dr. Carl Sagan was reported to have said in a private remark, the ETs are here as "missionaries."
5. ETs' role in human development. The ETs have stated that they have been involved in human evolution since the ancient past. This has included ET genetic engineering of presumably terrestrial primate stock to advance the development of human intelligence and consciousness. The ETs have also intervened culturally, to "engineer" human consciousness by directed telepathic inspiration and by ET encounters with selected humans. Such interventions may help solve the archeological mystery of the Missing Link, and the cultural anthropology mystery of the sudden arising of Sumerian and proto-African high cultures without precursor cultures.
6. ETs, the Avatars, and religious inspiration. The Avatars (major world religious leaders) are understood to include: Zoroaster (Zoroastrianism), Lao-Tse (Taoism/proto-Confucianism), Moses (Judaism), Jesus (Christianity), Buddha (Buddhism), Mohammed (Islam), and White Buffalo Calf Woman (Native American spirituality). Native American shaman experiencers have declared that Jesus was a Star Man, and that the Avatars are Star People. The ETs have indicated that the Avatars were sent to raise human spiritual consciousness, and have alluded to ET involvement with them. Because of the imprecision of communication, it is not clear whether the Avatars were: humans consistently guided by ET consciousnesses, humans with ensoulment by a soul which was ET in a previous life, human-extraterrestrial hybrids, or ETs manifesting human appearance. None of the above scenarios negates the role of the divine in religious inspiration, but rather allows for the divine to manifest through ET intermediaries. Just as the great religious books and doctrines were not uttered by God directly, but proclaimed to humanity through human intermediaries as well.
7. Death and judgment versus reincarnation. Those extraterrestrials commenting on life-span have unanimously spoken of ETs and humans as having had previous lifetimes, and, after death from their current life, going on in many cases to successive lifetimes. Besides affirming reincarnation, the ETs have spoken about individuals voluntarily and consciously choosing to re-ensoul in another body and live another lifetime. The subsequent lifetime is not necessarily on the same planet. Thus, ETs have shown a human person , in some instances, the human's previous life as an extraterrestrial, or their subsequent life as in ET form. Also, the ETs have shown a former extraterrestrial reincarnating in a human body to live a human lifetime. Indeed, some such "humanized" ET consciousnesses have deliberately come to Earth as missionaries, to aid in humanity's advancement. The degree of consciousness and spiritual progress that a given soul/consciousness makes in a given lifetime influences the possible choices available for that soul to have in a subsequent lifetime. There is no support in ET theology for the doctrine of only a single lifetime, after which the soul is judged and assigned a permanent fate.
8. "Sin" and the existence of evil. ET commentators have not dwelled on the idea of sin: they rather tend to portray bad human actions as unwise, unenlightened choices. The focus is on the human's learning to operate in a wiser fashion. The ETs are not moral relativists, however. If choices are bad enough, they may try to influence humans to step in, or rarely will step in themselves, to remedy the situation. The ETs have scolded many humans, including reportedly some governmental leaders, for bad choices which have harmed the environment or caused great human harm. The ETs appear to think of evil as un-enlightenment, capable of improvement through growth in consciousness and awareness. Sanctions are seen more as blocks to harm and as moral lessons than as punishments.
9. The Godhead, Creation and evolution. The available data is ambiguous. ET telepathic messages have given indications of both creation aspects and evolution aspects to the cosmos. Perhaps the conundrum is clarified by knowing how the ETs understand the divine. God is understood as the Supreme Source, out of which everything is manifested. The Supreme Source is that matrix of Consciousness out of which all entities have their being. This theology is somewhat akin to that which was expressed in the first chapter of the Gospel of John. There John spoke about "the Word" [Greek: logos], (God/Jesus). The Word is equivalent to the principle which makes things be as they are. Everything exists with its own character insofar as it participates to a greater or lesser degree in some aspect of the supreme Word/Consciousness.
10. Jesus and Redemption. Jesus' role in humanity's spiritual life must be understood in the context of what has already been expressed about ET influence on humankind and the Avatars. The ETs consider Jesus's life of service to others and self-sacrifice as an excelling example of living in highly developed consciousness, as were his spiritual teachings, moral guidance, and witnessing to high principles at the cost of his life. From this perspective, "redemption" is not so much a washing away of humans' sins, as it is strikingly setting a new and higher standard of moral (high consciousness) behavior, and showing humans the dark results of low consciousness choices. Jesus left humans free to chose, but emphatically pointed out the consequences of those choices. That is largely what the ETs do as well. The ET civilizations which have evolved to the level of interstellar travel and missionary work have not commented on their own spiritual evolution. Whether some ET civilizations have had a spiritual master like Jesus incarnate among them is not known from available data. We have much yet to learn from our ET visitors.
11. God's family. One of the key questions of theology is relationship to God. Who is in God's family? How big is that family? How varied? Our ET visitors, by their very appearing among us, and by their communicating sensitive spiritual thoughts, demonstrate to us how wide and how varied God's family is. It truly spans the universe, and encompasses conscious, intelligent life in all its many forms. It may be reassuring to traditional religionists to know that it is true throughout the galaxy and beyond, that "wherever two or three are gathered," there the divine is in the midst of them. The ETs acknowledge the spiritual preciousness of humans as sparks of the divine. Nevertheless, different ET cultures vary in the way they express that acknowledgment, in view of human transgressions against each other, other creatures and the Earth (Boylan, 1992).
As humans face the task of evaluating the visiting extraterrestrials' spiritual cultures, let us reflect on the lessons available from our own religious history. For example, will Americans encountering visiting cosmic cultures be that much different than the behavior of European colonists meeting foreigners (e.g., Carib Indians on Hispaniola Island)? The Europeans decided that the Caribs' religion was heathen and to be despised, which "justified" forcibly imposing Christianity on the Caribs.
Perhaps the appropriate behavior for humans at the upcoming meetings with ET representatives is the one suggested by Vatican Observatory astronomer and Jesuit, Guy Consulmagno. "If we were to make contact with other intelligent life, we'd have to tell our own sacred story, listen to them tell theirs, and learn."
© 1996 Dr. Richard J. Boylan, All Rights Reserved