First, let me say that I really have not been here long enough to know how often this UFO subject gets done. However, our net population seems to be quite tolerant of Illuminati/Masonic theorists and even the belief of a godlike quality in Michael Moore - so here goes...
My ex-scientology friend has recently suffered a personal loss. A childhood friend passed away this weekend at age 58 from an extremely virulent form of tongue and throat cancer. Naturally, subjects like life and death come up in conversation at such times. By sitting quietly (as much as I could) and listening, I came out of this with a deeper idea of my friends psychology and theology.
Both my friend (R) and the cancer victim (M) had childhood roots in the 7th day adventist church, having attended a 7th day grade school together. Both faded 7th and were also in the military during Vietnam. R expressed his independence by declaring himself a sort of militant athiest, while M just sort of smoked dope and gambled. R became enamored with scientology in about 1977 or so, and actually made it so far as to be in their elite sea org, serving on L.Ron.H's personal yacht in the engine room. He became disenchanted with scientology in about 5 years or so, but left still believing in most of their so-called theology. He just thought their org and L.Ron had become corrupt.
Now, what some may not know is that a lot of the scientology crowd are ardent believers in the UFO craze. At least my guy can actually get more upset than a southern baptist over GOD if you do not believe in area 51, roswell, etc. So, we are talking at lunch and he goes into subject #one which is the government conspiracy to cover up the saucers. He had found on the internet that in some Italian city there were mysterious lights this past weekend - but the US media covered it up and just reported on Cheney's misfire.
So, I asked if they had sent up a jet fighter or two to investigate. (I guess the Italians have at least a few F16s or something) He said, no - because the aliens did not show up on radar. Then I lost self control and made the comment that perhaps the alien admiral needed to train his pilots a little better - after all, they had their radar cloaking devices full on but were showing BRIGHT LIGHTS for 6 hours or so???? The reply was that no human can possibly imagine the mental process or purposes of the grey aliens.
Well, anyway - because I felt ashamed for being sarcastic especially when the other guy died I did some thinking on this. Maybe R was moving toward saying that the star fleet was sort of a sign over his friend or something. So, then it occured to ask some of the long-timers on this site if they had ever encountered similar cases.
I really think my good friend is having later life thoughts about going hard athiest and is hanging on to scientology and UFO belief as a sort of mental substitute. My question is - do any of us here feel this kind of attachment to the UFO phenomenon? Can this take on the character of a quasi-religion? If so, did it come before, during, or after the JW phase?
I am wondering in a serious but respectfully skeptical way,