It is always curious to ponder how much of that which Manly P. Hall expounded to the uninitiated is factual. After all, Manly P. Hall was a 33 degree Freemason and thus, sworn to secrecy and deception (for examples of this see Collectors Weekly and the Freemason deception).
Of course, all one can do it take that which he stated and dissect it. In this case, we are focusing on a lecture of his dated to 1950 AD titled, “The Case of the Flying Saucers.”
The Manly P. Hall website which reproduced the lecture notes introduces it by stating, “of great value in an historical sense and may or may not reflect either the genuine views or tactical obfuscations of such secretive fraternal organizations as the Scottish Rite or the Dark Brotherhood of the Langley Lodge.” (emphasis added, point made!)
One complexity pertaining to the issue of aliens, UFO, flying saucers, etc. is that there are a lot of concepts and experiences that are lumped together. These include literal UFOs (simply an object that is flying but is not identified which could be anything at all) and spaceships / spacecraft which may be termed flying saucers (if they are in a saucer-like shape).
Moreover, there are contactees, experiencers, abductees, etc. An abduction by “aliens” may not have anything to do with spaceships as finding oneself in an operation-like room may or may not be in a craft. Also, people who have contact and experiences with “aliens” may or may not have seen or have been taken aboard a craft.
In any regard, to survey that with which Manly P. Hall dealt in his lecture, consider his following statements.
He notes that “some of these accounts, including the flying cucumber, and the report of a great space ship that took fifteen minutes to float across the horizon…huge disks, some being two hundred and fifty feet in diameter…some of them are comparatively small.”
He also mentions “floating cigars” (likely the same as the “flying cucumber”—what, no pickles!). He also notes that “There is the report that some are luminous, according to others, they appear to be either a silver light or white disk.”
Overall, he sets the premise of the lecture as “our purpose is to analyze certain aspects of the human mind in connection with the mysterious case of the Flying Saucers.” Since his premise is “certain aspects of the human mind” he tells of the doings of a stage magician, an illusionist, and refers to “the disorientation of [the audience’s] judgment” and the possible correlation to the UFO phenomenon via “the delusion of masses.”
On this issue of the mind, he notes:
Once a story starts it is almost impossible to determine how far it will go and how many variations it will assume before the journey is ended. Like interesting fragments of gossip it develops jet propulsion and also passes through innumerable transformations, so the final account has little resemblance to the original story.
Knowing these tendencies of the human mind, these tendencies that are present in perfectly honest and honorable people, we have to approach all remarkable accounts, not in an effort to demonstrate how remarkable they are, but to discover, if possible some simple, natural, normal explanation, clinging to that until that explanation itself obviously falls.
There are always levels of explanations ascending from the simple to the complex. We should carefully wear out every level, exhausting its most reasonable probabilities before we ascend to more rarefied strata of opinions.
Interestingly, he notes that one reason that the impressive magical illusions failed to capture the audience is that “folks of our generation are insulted rather than amused when they are fooled.” We have reached a point when folks of our generation expect to be fooled (by the media, government, etc.) and often do not bother going beyond to find the facts behind the acts.
One may expect that a personage so learned in the occult / esoteric as Manly P. Hall would delve into metaphysics, mystical mystery religions in order to seek to understand the “mysterious case of the Flying Saucers.” Yet, from that perspective, just about the only thing he states is, “I do not believe the next Avatar will arrive on a flying saucer.”
In fact, as noted above, the complexity of the subject also includes that UFOs, here meaning objects that are flying and thought to be alien in nature, can be actually real material 3D vehicles but can also be spheres of light, etc.
It appears that Manly P. Hall restricted his lecture, perhaps on purpose, to actual vehicles and thus, keeps the focus on secret government projects and human technologies (which, he assures us time and time again, are best kept secret and thus, from the public so as to ensure national security).
For these reasons, he concludes, “the space ship as a solution to the present dilemma should be held, it seems to me, as a last recourse to be considered only when every other explanation fails.” He concludes that they are not alien space ships but human craft of whatever sorts.
He does, it seems rightly, note that we should, “bear in mind also the association between the concept of the flying saucer and the rapidly intensifying scientific-fiction literature which is getting more and more attention in the popular mind each year.”
He also notes that “we can only assume that the space ship theory is interesting people who are interested in the scientific-fiction approach to life, but not those deeply concerned with the salvation of the planet.”
Here he is referring to nut and bolts vehicles and thus the scientific interest. Had he gone the other way, the metaphysical mystical route he would have seen that “those deeply concerned with the salvation of the planet” are very much interested in UFOs of that sort. This is because “aliens” are constantly urging humanity to come together in order to save the Earth and this inevitably leads to the, shall we say interesting, conclusion that humans must for a one world government, one world religion, etc.; a New Age Alien World Order.
He retells of his on, literal, UFO experience and what / how he thought about it:
Out on a ranch there of several thousand acres, and standing on the side of a hill with the view extending from ten, twenty or thirty miles, I noticed one afternoon an extraordinary roar. It was far stronger and more powerful than the sound of any ordinary airplane motor, even a large transport or passenger plane. Suddenly without any warning whatever, this roaring took on the proportions of a definite vibration and something moved at an incredible rate passing almost directly over the place where I was standing.
That it was moving very close to the ground was evidenced from the fact that pinion trees not more than ten feet high were bent half way to the ground. The thing passed in a fraction of a second, but I saw absolutely nothing although there was ample visibility for miles in the direction in which the sound seemed to fade out. What it was I have not the slightest idea…
The thought that came to mind was that it was a jet-propelled instrument of some kind, moving more rapidly than the human perception could follow, and by the time I could organize myself to look for it, it was gone. That almost certainly was the answer. It is also quite possible that the sound of the instrument, or whatever it was, was such that it actually was moving in the opposite direction from that which the sound seemed to be traveling, and in looking in one direction I failed to see it because it moved in the opposite direction.
Anyway, nothing was visible, it left no track of any kind, no smoke or gas, there was a terrific roar as it moved over the ground, bending the trees and it was gone. Well, at that time what was going on in these research laboratories was not known to us, but it seemed almost certain that it was a high powered, possibly jet-propelled plane.
I thought no more of it and said nothing about it until it came to my mind in connection with the project saucer. Almost certainly these things have an explanation in terms of the incredible advancements that have been made in scientific research in recent years.
With regards to “the possibility that the so-called flying saucers were a guided or propelled weapon, and that they were the result of experimental research in military armament” he stated, “I imagine that if at any time since the flurry began Mr. Gallup had conducted a poll on public opinion, he would have found the idea that they were experimental research in arms was held by the majority of people.”
Well, the fact is that Gallup had already taken a poll August, 1947 AD which concluded that out of ten people, nine had heard of the “shining discs” reported as “flying saucers” cited by Kenneth Arnold in June, 1947 AD near Mount Rainier in Western Washington (which were most likely WWII style “flying wing” airplanes). As it turns out by that year’s end circa 850 UFO sightings were reported in the USA alone.
But having hear about is one thing and speculating about what they where is another. The poll asked “What do you think these saucers are?” and the results are as follows:
No answer, don't know: 33%
Imagination, optical illusions, mirages, etc.: 29%
US secret weapon, part of atomic bomb, etc.: 15%
Other explanations: 9%
Weather forecasting devices: 3%
Searchlights on airplanes: 2%
Russian secret weapon: 1%
The percentages add up to 102 because some gave more than one answer.
More specifically, “Guesses ranged all the way from practical to miraculous….a sign of the world's end….radio waves from the Bikini atomic bomb explosion…a new product being put out by the ‘DuPont people’…a publicity or advertising stunt…some kind of meteor or comet.”
Manly P. Hall notes that “Winchell mentioned the flying saucers in his column, telling the people not to worry, it was a government secret.” This would date to 1949 AD but no further citation is offered. This is, essentially, Hall’s own view:
We know that on various continents in secluded areas very elaborate experimental laboratories have been functioning for a number of years…There seems to be very good grounds for believing flying saucers are an experimental project…are the products of our own research equipment, that the flying saucer is some type of research device, an experimental device for either defensive or offensive armament. It is the only practical explanation that exists. This explanation violates none of the essential facts of the matter.
On the question of extra-terrestrial aliens, he concludes:
There seems to be no reason for the assumption, and no actual-proof, that these mysterious flying saucers and their retinues of other factors have to be explained as belonging to some other universe, or coming to us from out of space…
where it means fifteen, twenty or twenty-five years of travel through space at an incredible speed, with fuel problems almost beyond estimation, traveling at a speed almost as great as that of light, we might be wise and look for something simpler, and only depend upon such a concept in an emergency. Where everything else fails we are forced to fall back on the miraculous as an explanation of the problem we face.
Lastly, note that he notes:
It would be impossible to assume that we would have the present sense of complacency in the matter if we really believed that these ships navigated by intelligent creatures capable of building them were approaching and sailing around in good military formation, not alone entirely, but in bunches and clusters, without a definite reaction from the only group that could really estimate what it means, and that is, your scientific body.
Well, considering the “Arizona lights” and other cases, perhaps they have come “in good military formation…in bunches and clusters.” But then again, would not the secret gov. ops human military fly “in good military formation…in bunches and clusters”?
In fact, we identify “good military formation…bunches and clusters” in relation to “good military formation…bunches and clusters” by being previously aware of “good military formation…bunches and clusters” via experience with “good military formation…bunches and clusters.”
In other words, this point seems to be neither here nor there.
Satan disguises himself as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14)
…the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience (Ephesians 2:2)