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 Interview with Brent Raynes, Editor of Alternate Perceptions Magazine

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Number of posts : 1103
Registration date : 2009-05-17

PostSubject: Interview with Brent Raynes, Editor of Alternate Perceptions Magazine   Mon Jan 18, 2010 12:45 am

Interview with Brent Raynes – Editor of Alternate Perceptions Magazine, Author, Ufologist
Interviewed by Paul Dale Roberts, HPI General Manager

Question: Brent, before I start asking you the tough questions, can you please tell us something personal about yourself. Your family life, where you were born and raised. Hobbies you have. Recreational activities you enjoy. Movies, TV shows, books you like, etc.
Brent: Well Paul, to begin with, I am a true Mainiac. That is, I was born and raised in the state of Maine. LOL! Sorry, I couldn’t resist.
As a kid, I was fascinated with science fiction movies that dealt with life from outer space. I even turned my playhouse into an astronomical observatory, complete with a powerful 30X telescope. I yearned to be an astronaut, but when you grow up reality has a way of raining on your parade and your childhood dreams and fantasies have to be slightly revised.
Nonetheless, at the tender age of 14, in early 1967, I embarked upon a life path that would incorporate my childhood dream of exploring realities outside our earth-based mainstream perspective and launch me onto a path that I remain on to this very day, 43 years later! Although I recall how I was intrigued by the UFO reports that swept the nation back in March 1966, with national media attention focused mainly on the sightings in Michigan at that time, as well as the Air Force’s “swamp gas” speculation provided by Bluebook consultant Dr. J. Allen Hynek, it wasn’t until I sat down and actually read Flying Saucers—Serious Business by Frank Edwards that I made a conscious decision to become involved. I began to collect every book, every magazine and newspaper clipping that I could get my hands on, and I began engaging in extensive correspondence with just about every “ufologist” and UFO witness I could locate across the country.
As for my life outside of my ufological obsession, I had a very good childhood. I loved roaming around those Maine woods as well as looking up at the stars. Out of high school, I joined the U.S. Navy for a couple of years of active duty, cruising the world onboard a destroyer escort called the USS Paul (DE-1080). On November 26, 1977, I married a wonderful gal from Waynesboro, Tennessee. Joan and I are still married, still deeply in love. We have a beautiful daughter named Chandra, born November 9, 1980, who is now married with three step children from her husband’s previous marriage and a curly haired red headed delight named Conner who she gave birth to on August 30, 2007. Waynesboro is home now.
Since 1985, I’ve been working in warehouse management at a Tennessee state prison facility. I like writing, walking, traveling, meeting and interviewing different people who have done their own research into UFOs, the paranormal, cryptozoology, ancient history, as well as people who have had their own personal experiences and conducted their own field or lab work in such areas of interest. I’ve studied quite a bit in psychology, took some college classes in it, took training in hypnosis, studied the theories of Carl Jung, and of course immersed myself deeply in parapsychological literature. For several years now, I’ve conducted informational and meditational workshops on the ancient Peruvian Whistling Vessels. Joan and I have also been involved in the Native American spiritual movement, attending sweat lodges, visiting sacred sites, meditating, etc. In July 2009, my wife Joan (who is part Cherokee) and I assisted Doctors Greg and Lora Little on a nearly week long ARE (Association for Research and Enlightenment) sponsored Indian Mounds Tour in Ohio, doing meditations and purification ceremonies at these sites.
Question: I know you have been studying UFOs since 1967. From all of your research and detective work in the UFO field, do you believe that the military knows what UFOs are?
The military has most certainly accumulated and classified a tremendous amount of data on UFOs. However, I’m not at all certain that they have figured it out. Like us, I believe they are still missing final and conclusive pieces of the puzzle. But I suspect that they are keeping an eye on certain so-called “window” areas of high-strangeness like Sedona, Arizona, and the San Luis Valley of Colorado.

Question: Many Ufologists have experienced being followed by the infamous MIB. Do you ever think you have been targeted by the MIB? What do you think the MIB are?
No, I can’t blame the MIB for any of my woes. I do take reports of this nature seriously, although like UFOs you have to separate the wheat from the chaff. John Keel felt that some MIBs were people who had become influenced, “programmed” or “possessed” by an alien intelligence (he called them ultraterrestrials) and he was particularly interested in gypsies. He felt that if he could catch up with one of these MIBs, he might have gotten some answers. Other MIBs he felt might have been apparitional phenomena. Some seem pretty peculiar and alien, while others are cases of possible government agents, mistaken identity, overactive imaginations, and hoaxes.
Question: What are your thoughts on the ancient astronaut theory?
I find Tennessee “investigative mythologist” William Henry’s books and articles thought-provoking. He brings quantum theory into it, and he takes historical traditions, legends and stories and weaves it all together with modern science and theory and modern elements of the UFO phenomenon and he takes us into some interesting directions.
Certainly as Jacques Vallee established quite well in 1969 in his book Passport to Magonia, UFO-type phenomena and sightings and interactions with similar beings have gone on for many, many centuries throughout the world.

Question: Who started Alternate Perceptions Magazine?
I started this as a small newsletter way back in 1985, then entitled ParaUFOlogy Forum. That same year I met and became very good friends with Dr. Greg Little of Memphis, TN., who had just had published a book that dealt with UFOs, the paranormal, and Jung’s archetypal theories, which was entitled The Archetype Experience. Beginning that same year, Greg became a frequent contributor, and then one day in 1993, while Greg and Lora were driving my wife Joan and I around to see different Indian Mound sites in northern Mississippi (another interest among many that we shared), Greg told me that he wanted to come onboard and help me with the magazine. I accepted his kind offer, he became co-editor, the magazine eventually became the now familiar Alternate Perceptions, and for a while we had magazine distributors who distributed our publication across the US and up into Canada. In the end, we had a color cover and had grown up to 67 pages. But in 2002, we became an electronic magazine and now have a much wider circulation and reach than we were able to achieve through print.

Question: What do you hope to accomplish with Alternate Perceptions Magazine?
Like many other magazines of this type, we strive to responsibly report on data and theories relative to our focus. When possible, rather than rehashing the same old information being circulated by other zines and blogs, we seek to do our fair share of real journalism by conducting first-hand interviews and on-site investigations. We hope to contribute new and unique information and insights.

Question: You are the author of Visitors from Hidden Realms. Can you brief us on what this book is about?
My effort was to take a comprehensive global and historical look at the UFO mystery. I examined shamanic lore and traditions, tales of the Muslim Jinn, the “little people” of the British Isles, and tried to compare the ancient core elements of that data to the modern alien encounter reports. I included the “paranormal”, even so-called “out of body travel,” and touched upon what some researchers and scientists are saying about dimensions and quantum physics.
Question: Are you working on any book right now?
My second book On The Edge of Reality: Dream Weavers – The Mastering of Time and Space was just published a few months ago. The January issue of Alternate Perceptions has a wonderful book review of it by Greg.
I’m working on a couple of other books in my head at the moment, but nothing beyond that.

Question: What is your website address and how can someone contact you?
Alternate Perceptions, which is posted monthly (always around the first of each month) is available for reading at: Besides the current issue, online back issues are also archived.
I can be reached by email at:

Question: Do you think Bob Lazar was telling the truth about back engineering UFOs at Area 51?
It’s certainly an interesting theory. But my understanding was that with Bob Lazar there was a credibility problem with his alleged scientific background and qualifications.

Question: I once talked with Travis Walton on the phone about his experiences. The way he describes his abduction is terrifying. What do you think the purpose of abductions are?
Travis Walton would certainly not be alone in that regard. Many witnesses have described their encounters as downright traumatic. I sure would like to say that I had a better handle and understanding on this particular phenomenon, but I strongly suspect that surface appearances can be very misleading. The Muslim Jinn and Native American Tricksters and “little people” reportedly performed many of the same acts and activities, so these elements that make up the so-called “alien abduction” may represent certain cultural, social, and archetypal byproducts of our personal and collective unconsciousness, as well as possible influences generated by “outside’ intelligences that adapt their actions and explanations to fit the particular mainstream society and culture in which they appear. It may very well be that it’s people with certain psychic sensitivities who are able to perceive or glimpse an alien presence that trespasses into our dimension/world unseen by most, and so out of necessity the intelligence behind that presence may offer an explanation that is like a double edged sword. That is, the explanation will satisfy some and will be frowned upon and ridiculed by others. Thus “they” can continue to trespass without fear that their true motives and agenda will be known, for they have badly contaminated the waters of truth with their psychological warfare tactics of propaganda. The evidence will be perceived by the mainstream science and reasoning of that society as inconclusive, if not doubtful, as the “intelligence” will create events and answers that simply don’t add up if taken literally.
Well, that’s one possibly, which John Keel offered up many moons ago, and that could indeed fit and explain a variety of the factors that make up the full spectrum of data that is ufology.
Question: Do you feel there is a connection between UFOs and crop circles?
While many crop circles of course are man-made, there are those wherein good evidence shows anomalous plant and soil changes occurring, and there are also instances of very mysterious balls of light and such manifesting in conjunction with the appearances of some of these crop circles and formations, as well as electromagnetic type anomalies and reported effects upon human consciousness.

Question: How about cattle mutilations? What do you think is going on with cattle mutilations?
Most “mutes” like most UFOs and most other mysteries do have natural explanations, but then there are cases that come along that defy a final and satisfactory natural or normal explanation, even after a thorough and deeply probing investigation has been conducted by competent parties. I really don’t know exactly what is going on here, but it certainly needs to be looked into more.
Question: I hear you are also interested in Native American Rituals. What made you go down that path?
The single thing that stands out most in my mind, that influenced me and caused me to think about a possible UFO/Native American connection was back around 1970, when there were many sightings of UFOs on Hopi land out in Arizona and certain Hopi traditionalists were perceiving these sightings as a sign that the Kachina beings of their spiritual belief system were coming to them. The Hopi believe in beings on other worlds in space. It’s a part of their spirituality.
Then around the mid-1970s a UFO “contactee” in Ohio, who was part Iroquois, introduced me to a Native American medicine man in Pennsylvania who was also a “contactee” himself. Since then I have met and been in touch with other Native American medicine people who had UFO contact stories and related their Native American traditions and legends of sky beings and star people to their own interactions with what we call “alien beings” or “ufonauts.”
My wife Joan is part Cherokee and I’ve shared a journey with her too that has been very enlightening and rewarding. We’ve participated in many different Native American events and ceremonies over the years, and this is also how I happened to come upon some very interesting stories as well.

Question: What other paranormal phenomenon catches your fancy and why?
Oh my, it would be a whole slew of ‘em really. Poltergiests (noises ghosts), which often erupt in homes of people who have had close encounters, and I’m also very interested as well in out-of-body experiences, near-death experiences, remote reviewing, telepathy, and of course “ghosts.” To me it is critical that ufologists should also be very familiar with parapsychology, because many “paranormal” aspects are imbedded within those reports. Most “ufonauts”, for example, reportedly communicate mind-to-mind, not verbally. They can levitate, they can pass through solid objects, and they can appear and disappear like a ghost. Many years ago, John Keel encouraged me in a letter to become familiar with the paranormal literature on apparitions, pointing out that many UFO cases contained similar elements.
Question: Have you ever had a paranormal experience?
Yes, on a few occasions in my life I believe I have, although I find that when these things happen to you, sometimes they seem perfectly normal and it’s only afterwards that you’re really scratching your head and reflecting on what happened earlier. At a time where I was really struggling for spiritual answers, I suddenly had an experience one night that seemed quite real in which many (looked like hundreds) of these marble sized pulsating clear white balls of light were swarming through the hallway of the second floor of my parent’s house in Maine. Then I found myself opening my eyes and realized I was actually laying in my bed and was not on my feet. It seemed so real! Interestingly there wasn’t any fear whatsoever in that experience, and one of the things that I had been praying about just a couple of days before was that God would give me some sort of sign that would show me the correct path. At the time, I was struggling with a Christian-based faith that was causing me to fear a lot of things paranormal, and I even prayed that I could be shown a sign but that I wouldn’t experience any trauma or fear from it. That certainly happened. I also sensed or seemed aware of a presence holding me back, from walking out into the hallway just before the tiny spheres of luminous light appeared. I didn’t even turn to question or challenge this presence that I sensed. I simply accepted what was happening, and with absolutely no fear whatsoever. Not what my so-called normal reactions would have been!
Question: Here is a fun question. If you had 6 dinner guests, 3 historical and 3 fictional, who would they be and why?
The three historical guests would be Carl Jung, John Keel, and Jesus Christ (what a conversation we could have!), and the three fictional guests would be Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Who, and TV’s Ghost Whisperer (I don’t want to be accused of discriminating, so we need to have one woman present). Such an assortment of guests should make for a unique evening of unique conversation and discourse! The insight that might be given upon all of this high-strangeness with which we study could be profoundly altered overnight.
Question: Thank you for this fantastic interview, do you have any words of wisdom for your fans?
Only that true wisdom is often the recognition of ones own limitations and struggles to attain anything closely resembling wisdom. In other words, we must all think first and then engage our mouths second. I wish that I had done that more myself! LOL!
Thanks so much Paul for this opportunity to share my personal thoughts and reflections with you and your many readers. It has been fun and it has been a genuine honor. Take good care!
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Interview with Brent Raynes, Editor of Alternate Perceptions Magazine
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