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Ancient China's UFOs, Goethe, Cassanova and another Caddy update!

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From the files of the River Journal's Surrealist Research Bureau

As more and more records of ancient China are being translated and disseminated in the West, some interesting things are coming to light. For instance, legends of the Yellow Emperor, who reigned some 4,500 years ago, state he had a flying “dragon” which carried him through the air at enormous speeds. At first glance this appears a typical fairy tale, but in this case the speeds were so great that time itself was distorted and the aging process was affected—a puzzling apparent reference to relativity millennia before Einstein. (Dragons in old China referred not only to our classical idea of dragons, but also to comets, meteors and any sky-borne phenomena.)

One of the more peculiar sightings of the Yuan Dynasty (in 1277) was recorded by the poet Liou Ying in the poem “Event seen at Dawn” (found in chapter 3 of the Yuan Literature Collection). Briefly, he relates waking at dawn and seeing a luminous object with five “unequaled” lights shining down beneath it,  a dome on its top, zigzagging like a falling leaf (a motion common in such reports). The sun rises but its brightness pales in comparison. Another object, a flattened ovoid, joins the first, and the two then speed off into the heavens together. Liou Ying ponders deeply, “After the event I reflect on it very much but cannot find a reasonable explanation. I write down all that I saw in the hope that whoever understands these events can give me an explanation,” a statement that many modern day witnesses to inexplicable events might make as well.

Another sighting, in Changsu in 1523, was seen by the teacher Lu Yu: two craft which measured 60 feet, cruising slowly in the air over a school. A score of scholars, hearing a commotion, came out of the school to observe the hovering phenomena as well. The men all became paralyzed, unable to speak, and remained that way until the objects disappeared. Five days later the scholar Lu Yu died, though the account gives no cause of death. (From the Chinese book Summerhouse of Flowers.)

On another note, two other brief mentions might be made, not UFOs per se, but interesting nonetheless. 

Casanova’s memoirs relate a strange occurrence on 31 August 1743 in Italy. A pyramidal flame about two feet long and four feet above the ground remained about 10 feet away from him. The strange light accompanied him all night long as he walked along the road to Rome. Whenever he tried to approach the hovering flame it receded, maintaining always that 10 foot distance, disappearing only when the dawn broke. He ended his account, “I was prudent enough not to mention the circumstances to anyone.”

A similar possible swamp gas/ghost light was witnessed in 1768 by the then-16-year-old, soon-to-be philosopher Goethe and two companions. In his autobiography he relates they were walking beside a wagon in a forest one night when “suddenly in a ravine we beheld a sort of amphitheater, blazing forth so bright the eye was nearly blinded. The lights were not fixed but jumped up and down. Most, however, remained stable and radiated that intense luminescence and it was with the greatest reluctance that I was prevented by my companions from investigating the matter further and we hurried along our way.”

Caddy Update: A number of people who have seen the original Caddy footage have stepped forward to verify it is not the 4- to 5-second clip that was shown in the recent disappointing “Hillstranded” premier. Despite numerous requests by myself and others, the Discovery Channel remains close-lipped and secretive about this footage to the point of paranoia. 

‘til next time, All Homage to Xena!

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Jody Forest Jody Forest When he's not hidden behind the palatial gates of his Dover estate, Casa de Bozo, Jody is out using outdated and corny pickup lines on various gullible women.

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