Wow, a fantastic post by Lon. I’ve been fascinated by UFO themed, paranormal or supernatural narratives concerning Bigfoot for years. These tales of high strangeness encounters inspired me a few years ago to start a blog devoted just to this topic [Frame 352: The Stranger Side of Sasquatch.]
Like the Contactee stories of meetings with beings from Venus or Mars, rides aboard spaceships, metaphysical discourse between human and alien, the tales of Bigfoot meetings containing yet further bizarre elements are incredible to believe; certainly if we take them literally. But, these tales do exist, and as Lon and others ask: what about them?
We have to look at these tales, and we have to acknowledge their existence. As Forteans, that’s easy, it’s what we do. Strictly “flesh and blood” Bigfoot researchers often don’t allow themselves that luxury and in fact, (as recent events have proven on a couple of well known Bigfoot message boards) many Bigfoot forums will kick you off if you start up about UFO or inter-dimensional Bigfoot. Some boards and groups have had it in their TOS that they won’t allow such discussions at all. It's an understatement to say that the flesh and blood vs. paranormal Bigfoot discussion is a controversial one.
There was an excellent Bigfoot blog around: The Blogsquatcher. For reasons of his own, the “Blogsquatcher” decided to stop blogging about Bigfoot and his research in the spring of 2010 and the blog is no longer active. But he was one of the few Bigfoot bloggers who gave serious consideration to the paranormal/UFO/anomalous aspects of Sasquatch encounters. Other paranormal Bigfoot blogs include author and researcher Lisa Shiel (Backyard Bigfoot:The True Story of Stick Signs, UFOs and the Sasquatch) who is not only a researcher, but has had her own UFO sightings and high strangeness encounters concerning Bigfoot. Peter Guittilla has been writing about high strangeness Bigfoot for years, and his book Bigfoot Files is a great collection of stories from witnesses about their weird encounters.
Good thoughts posted here on The C-Influence from others on the nature of high strangeness Bigfoot, and I can’t really add anything; it’s already been said, and very well. I will share a bit of my own experience with the “other side” of Bigfoot however.
I remember when I first came across a “weird Bigfoot” story. It was many years ago and for some reason, the article, (I believe written by Jack Lapseritis, who Lon mentions in his post) ticked me off. It made me angry. Now, why is that? That’s an interesting response to something I knew nothing about, isn’t it? I “believed in” Bigfoot; meaning, I accepted that Bigfoot most likely existed. A flesh and blood Bigfoot, and, a “giant ape,” at that. Now of course, I believe no such thing-- oh, I believe Bigfoot exists all right, but Bigfoot is more, far more, than “just a giant ape.”
But, as a Fortean in the making, I couldn’t bring myself to just throw away the article, so I filed it away. Synchronicty came along, and suddenly, I was coming across all kinds of articles about UFOs and Bigfoot, Bigfoot living under ground, dematerializing Bigfoot, etc. I was definitely intrigued. I was hooked, actually, and remain so today.
Then I came upon two Oregon (where I live) weird Bigfoot tales. One is the “monster” in Conser Lake outside of Albany, Oregon, and the other, the experiences of Stan Johnson in Sutherlin, Oregon. (Both subjects of a project I’ve been working on for awhile now.) I won't go into details about either here, but both share many similarities (even while differing in many respects; for example, appearance.) Both stories include landed UFOs, Bigfoot or “hairy biped” associated with that UFO, the Bigfoot communicating with humans that it came from outer space, telepathic communications between the Bigfoot creature and humans, strange sounds heard in close proximity to humans but no creature seen, and a lot more.
I met Stan Johnson once at a local UFO conference; he was one of the presenters. He was elderly ; I’d say in his seventies, yet he was very charismatic. As I listened to him speak, I found myself disagreeing with his personal perception on things which were framed within a religious context, but his energy was profoundly strong and, when he shook my hand and we spoke for a few minutes, I could feel this energy -- a heat, and an electrical feeling - - emanating from him. And here’s an interesting tangent: I had less trouble believing his stories of his paranormal encounters with Bigfoot -- it really wasn’t such a stretch for me to accept the possibility he had these experiences -- as I did accepting his personal, religious interpretation of those experiences.
One day around that time, I was speaking with the then owner of a local New Age bookstore, Stargate, who had known Stan, the object of our discussion. As we were talking about Stan, I became aware of a bright white cone of light -- like an upside down ice cream cone-- that had come down through the ceiling and settled on us, sort of covering us or enclosing us. I was inwardly freaked out; was I going crazy, having a migraine, what? Sound became muffled, light was weird; I could still hear and see but it was as if I was looking through a glass brick. As soon as had stopped talking about Stan, the cone of light lifted back up into the ceiling and “out.” The owner gave me a funny look; I thought, “She must think I’m nuts, I probably look panic stricken as all hell” but she said, “You saw what too; that always happens when we talk about Stan.”
So there that is.
Back to the religious aspect of some of this: Stan Johnson considered himself a Christian, and didn’t see any conflict with his beliefs and his experiences. Yet an Oregon Bigfoot researcher not long ago rejected my following her blog -- and her, mine -- because, as this person told me, they considered themselves a Christian, and therefore, could not accept any discussion or link to any blogs that had to do with “the paranormal.” In an authentic and genuine attempt to understand, I responded that, if one puts themselves out there as a Bigfoot researcher, yet rejects accounts that conflict with personal values, well, is that research? Of course this isn’t limited to religious views; there are Bigfoot researchers who may or may not consider themselves religious but their rejection of this high strangeness Bigfoot isn’t based on religious convictions necessarily, but simply the old flesh and blood vs. high strangeness. This is another area of discussion I guess but I find it interesting a researcher can be so involved in a marginalized, and trivialized, area, and yet, have their own buffers that keep them from going completely down the rabbit hole.
Bigfoot researcher Autumn Williams (whose recent book, Enoch, while not dealing with high strangeness Bigfoot, has received a lot of criticism -- and praise -- for focusing on both the protection of Bigfoot, as well as the witness, and the dynamics between witness and researcher) has suggested, along with other researchers (like the Blogsquatcher) that Bigfoot is almost eerily sensitive to physical effects of things like cameras and infrared. We can speculate that it’s possible the creature we call Sasquatch, Bigfoot, etc. has highly developed senses to the point of being supernatural. (Speaking of Autumn Williams, her mother, Sali Sheppard-Wolford, has written her own book-- Valley of the Skookum -- about her highly unusual Bigfoot experiences which include MIBS, UFOs, telepathic communications and other high strangeness.) Or, of course, Bigfoot simply is “supernatural.” Some, like Lisa Shiel, and Patrick Harpur in his excellent book Daemonic Reality, suggest Bigfoot is a fairy. Specifically, as Shiel suggests here, a water fairy. Shiel writes that Bigfoot’s affinity for water (something apes do not share, which is more evidence to support Bigfoot as a non-ape creature) parallels Celtic, Algonquian, and other cultural fairy entities. Bigfoot is a remnant of the fairy realm. This idea explains UFOs, alien beings, the dematerializing, feelings of disorientation reported by witnesses ... like Jacque Vallee’s Passport to Magonia, where comparisons between the fairy realm and UFOs are made to support the idea much of what we call UFOs (and aliens) are earth bound entities, not ETs, Bigfoot could also be thought of as a fairy creature.