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Man’s Desire for Wisdom from Above

Anna Merlan is an American journalist who specializes in politics and religion. In her 2019 book, Republic of Lies: American Conspiracy Theorists, she devotes a chapter to the psychology behind UFO conspiracies. Not just in the US, but globally:

… the intensity, depth, and breadth of the conversation about aliens throughout the world says something profound about human hopes. About our desire to not be alone in the universe. (About) our wish for some wise and mysterious force out there in the farthest reaches of space that is ready to show us the way. UFO enthusiasm coexists with a certain degree of New Age spirituality. There’s a sense that extraterrestrials don’t just exist. But that they will someday reveal to us … a better way to live, a higher state of being.

Merlan quotes astronomer and leading ufologist Jacques Vallée, who wrote: “The UFO mystery holds a mirror to our own fantasies. It expresses our secret longings for a wisdom that might come down from the stars in new, improved, easy-to-use packaging, to reveal the secrets of life and tell us, at long last, who we are.”

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