The Dr. Edgar Mitchell Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial Encounters, FREE
When you see the Earth like this, and the cosmos like this, and ten times more stars, ten times as bright because of no intervening atmosphere, in the full 180-degree view, if you put your face to the windows, it’s magnificent, it’s overwhelming.… What happened was a sudden recognition of heart…. It made me realize that the answers to the ancient questions, “Who are we? How did we get here? Where are we going?” within science were certainly incomplete and perhaps flawed. This feeling of unity and connectedness was an ecstatic, blissful experience. When I came back, I knew my life had changed. I knew that I had to go find out what was this experience I had had.
Dr. Edgar Mitchell, Apollo 14 Astronaut
Remarks at PEER’s Star Wisdom conference
May 8, 1998
The following is a document that describes our restructured organization, The Dr. Edgar Mitchell Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial Encounters, FREE.
The EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR is Dr. Rudy Schild, Emeritus Professor of Astrophysics at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics at Harvard University. Dr. Edgar Mitchell has agreed to the naming of our new organization on his behalf. Here is the YouTube video where Edgar has agreed to the name change and his continued participation and support in FREE. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XR9X6WRITn0) Edgar is also one of our Co-Founders and will be a member of our initial Board of Directors. Reinerio (Rey) Hernandez, J.D., MCP, employed as an IRS Tax Attorney in Miami, Florida, will serve as the “Operations Manager” to supervise the “day to day” operations of FREE.
The initial FREE BOARD OF DIRECTORS, shall be as follows:
- Dr. Edgar Mitchell: 6th man on the moon; founder of the Institute for Noetic Sciences; Father of the Disclosure Movement in Ufology; Consciousness Studies researcher who has published numerous articles in this arena and on the Physics of Consciousness.
- Dr. Jon Klimo: retired Professor for over 40 years in the fields of Transpersonal Psychology and Parapsychology who has published many academic articles and published many academic books on these topics.
- Dr. Leo Sprinkle: retired Professor of Psychology and the first academic to publish academic articles on Experiencers of UFO related “ET Contact”.
- Dr. Bob Davis: retired professor for over 30 years at the State University of NY in audiology, neuroscience and electrophysiology and has recently published a book on the UFO Phenomenon.
- Dr. Michael Melton: psychologist who has worked as a therapist with "Experiencers" of ET Contact for many years, and
- Mary Rodwell, Kathleen Marden, Giorgio Piacenza and Rosemary Ellen Guiley: They are four of the most famous non-academic researchers on UFO & Paranormal Contact Experiencers, who together have researched tens of thousands of UFO and Paranormal contact cases, and who are considered by everyone to be “experts” in this field).
The Mission of FREE will focus on “Research, Education and Support” but will primarily focus on scientific investigation through surveys and interviews on individuals who have had UFO related contact experiences with non-human sentient beings (commonly known as “ET Contact”) and to compare this group with individuals that have had other types of "paranormal contact experiences" through the following: NDEs, OBEs, Hallucinogenic/Entheogenic natural substances, hypnotic regression, Mystical Meditation Travel, Channeling, Remote Viewing, and human encounters with non-human intelligence, and related paranormal contact experiences.
FREE will also begin, through the contributions of physicists and other scientists, to bring into our “Experiencer” research studies the latest findings from advanced physics that might be utilized to begin to explain the quantum nature of our reality. The FREE Board of Directors are in the process of developing hypotheses to address “paranormal contact modalities” related to the quantum nature of our multi-dimensional reality. Dr. Edgar Mitchell, Dr. Rudy Schild, among other physicists, scientists, and psychologists and other researchers associated with FREE, who are proponents of the Quantum Hologram Theory of Physics and Consciousness, will remain open and research all possible explanations in the growing field of what is commonly called “Consciousness Studies” to determine the possible interrelationship of paranormal contact modalities.
All FREE Board of Directors endorse the Post-Materialist Paradigm of what is “Consciousness”, promulgated by Dr. Edgar Mitchell since the early 1970s who helped to establish the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS), a paradigm that firmly believes that consciousness is non-local and independent of the brain. This view of non-local consciousness allows us to possibly explain a wide variety of special states of consciousness and all the so called “paranormal” contact phenomena.
In addition, FREE will also uphold the views established by the field of “Transpersonal Psychology” that investigates the “Spiritual” aspects of our reality with openness and to help others who have had direct personal contact experiences to integrate these experiences into their daily lives and possibly into their spiritual practice. To this end, FREEwill continue to support all “Experiencers” of paranormal experiences through the FREE “EXPERIENCER BUDDY PROGRAM” and other support services.
The uniqueness of FREE will also address the historic field of Parapsychology which has failed to introduce the topic of UFO related contact experiences with non-human intelligent sentient beings into its research. Parapsychologists have conducted research and have accepted almost all of the other previously stated modalities of “Contact Experiences” (with the possible exception of “contact” via hallucinogenic experiences) but they have ignored the “pink elephant in the room” -- the fact that humans are being “visited” in our space/time by UFOs and related contact with non-human intelligent sentient beings, commonly known as “ET Contact”.
This grave omission is probably due to many factors. One reason is that UFO ET Contact is one of the remaining taboo phenomena. Many of the various contact modalities, especially NDEs, have been extensively “scientifically” studied by a diversity of interdisciplinary academics. One can argue that NDEs are now not considered as an unthinkable topic as it was before the publication in 1975 of Dr. Raymond Moody’s historic book “Life After Life”. ET Contact Experiencers are also not only ignored by the field of Parapsychology but also within the field of Ufology until very recently. Even today, ET Contact is still not prominently featured in the numerous yearly Ufology conferences and events. Many of the older “nuts and bolts” researchers in Ufology are now just starting to accept the fact that there are actually conscious living entities operating these crafts and that there are in fact “Experiencers” of said contact with these entities.
Another important factor that might explain the ignorance of the ET phenomenon is the application of a scientific evidence-based academic research study, through extensive surveys and interviews, on “Experiencers of ET Contact”. Most prior research in this field, while informative, has failed to be recognized, as it should be, given the absence of both quantitative and qualitative surveys and interviews obtained from a large population sample. In addition, almost all of this previous research focused only on “Abductions”, the action or an instance of forcibly taking someone away against their will by ET beings.
Today we know that many individuals are having a diversity of UFO related ET Contact Experiences that are in fact not “Abduction” related. I have personally spoken with over one hundred Experiencers of ET contact with a UFO and with an ET being, without the use of hypnosis, that according to the Experiencer did not involve an “Abduction” or a taking of their physical or etheric body. Our Phase 2 survey, Question # 164, also indicated that 70% of ET Contact Experiencers did in fact have an ET Contact Experiencer but did NOT have an “Abduction”. This information has never before been systematically studied and documented.
Let’s review just some of the few research studies on Experiencers of ET Contact. As previously mentioned, most studies have focused on “Abduction” cases. The pioneer in this research field is undoubtedly Dr. Leo Sprinkle, a professor of Psychology at the University of Wyoming, who first began in the early 1960s the first research studies on Experiencers. His early studies were primarily personality tests of individuals claiming ET Contact and Abductions. Dr. Sprinkle’s research was the only academic study in this field for almost 10 years. While deserving much praise for his pioneering work, Dr. Sprinkles studies were focused on limited issues. The survey that contained the largest sample of Experiencers that I am aware of was a study published in the Journal of UFO Studies by Dr. Sprinkle and Dr. June O Parnell in 1990 which was a survey of 250 Experiencer participants which focused only on their personality characteristics-- “Personality Characteristics of Persons Who Claim Experiences”.
Additionally, Dr. John Mack, a tenured faculty member at Harvard’s School of Medicine, was one also of the giants in this field but his research was also based on a small group of case studies with Experiencers of “Abductions.” His book titled “Abduction” was a case study of 13 individuals. His last book, “Passport to the Cosmos”, was based on interviews with less than 50 individuals. Dr. Mack publicly admitted that he had been formally working with less than 150 Experiencers. To the best of my recollection, and that of Dennis Briefer and Dr. Rudy Schild who worked very closely with Dr. Mack, there were no published statistical studies on this topic by Dr. Mack.
Folklorist Dr. Thomas E. Bullard’s two-volume work, “UFO Abductions: The Measure of a Mystery” was not based on individual Experiencer surveys and individual interviews but instead involved comparative research on over 300 UFO abduction cases reported by the Fund for UFO Research, one of the first UFO reporting organizations. Dr. Bullard relied on case studies of UFO Experiencers from third party sources and these sources did not undertake any comprehensive unified data collection on individual Experiencers.
Dr. Kenneth Ring, the noted NDE researcher, also undertook one of the very few analytic research studies of ET Contact Experiencers in his classic book “The Omega Project” but again its sample size of only 97 previously identified Experiencers of UFO Abductions was very limited in scope and did not incorporate any interview findings. In addition, the study only relied on other “Abduction” researchers to identify candidates and most of these researchers were self professed “Abduction” researchers. All of the individuals involved in the Dr. Ring study were primarily individuals who considered themselves to be “Abductees”, (i.e., individuals that have been “Abducted”, and not the general population of individuals having all types of UFO related ET contact involving both abduction and non-abduction related cases). Finally, Dr. Ring’s study focused on how these Experiencers were transformed by their experiencers and not on the actual query on the ET Contact Phenomena in general.
The most recent analytic study on Experiencers of ET Contact is a highly recognized study by our own FREE Board of Directors, Kathleen Marden and FREE Consultant, Denise Stoner, researchers who have investigated and written about Experiencers of ET Contact for many years. Kathleen Marden, who has engaged in UFO Abduction Research for more than 25 years, is Mutual UFO Network’s Director of Experiencer Research and is very well know for the seminal work on the Betty and Barney Hill “Abduction” case and authored the now classic book titled “Captured! The Betty and Barney Hill UFO Experience”.
Researchers Kathleen Marden and Denise Stoner conducted a statistical study of 50 Experiencers and 25 non-Experiencers as a control group in their “Marden-Stoner Commonalities among Abduction Experiencers Study” and published their findings in a book in 2013 titled “The Alien Abduction Files”. Even though Kathleen and Denise’s research study is one of the few statistical based study to date on the ET Contact Phenomenom, its findings are based on surveys and interviews on a relatively small sample of 50 Experiencers. This study only utilized individuals who reported “Abductions” and not those that had experienced UFO related contact who have no recollection of an “Abduction”.
Because of the limitations of the entire body of previous research in this field, there clearly is a need for a scientific based research study using a large population sample, by applying both a comprehensive and diverse large number of quantitative and qualitative structured survey instruments. A proposed research study should also incorporate both individuals that have had UFO related “Abduction” experiences and those that have not had abductions. In addition, a study should incorporate a diverse and large population outside of the mainstream UFO organizations and also include the Paranormal audience among the diversity of organizations now available through Facebook. In addition, a research study needs to incorporate an automated survey collection instrument, such as Survey Monkey, to facilitate the systematic collection of a large amount of survey data. Finally, if UFO related ET contact is occurring, we need to acquire data, via the same instruments, but in different languages. Thus, there is a need for a survey instrument and formal interview process to be administered in as many diverse languages as possible. Clearly, there is a need for a new research methodology and survey instrument to properly research UFO related ET Contact Experiences.
Dr. Jon Klimo, a recently retired tenured professor who has worked in the fields of Parapsychology and Transpersonal Psychology for over 40 years, will serve as Chair of the FREE Experiencer Research Study and has already develop the research methodology for this study. Dr. Klimo is perfect for this task because he has chaired over 250 Ph.D. dissertations and has taught “Research Methodology” for approximately 40 years. Dr. Klimo has also researched Experiencers of ET Contact and other paranormal contact phenomena for many years and has published various academic papers and books on these topics.
Our FREE Experiencer Research Study is easily distinguished from previously stated research studies. First, it is comprised of 2 surveys. Phase 1 and Phase 2 surveys consist of approximately 700 total questions. Participants were asked to base their responses on their "conscious" recollection and not on information from hypnotic regression. Based on those who participated in Phase 1 and 2, Phase 3, will involve formal interviews of individuals that the research committee has determined are possible Experiencers of UFO related ET Contact-- not just those who have reported “Abductions” but also those who believe that they were not “Abducted”. Our survey data base collector software is “Survey Monkey”, one of the world’s leading survey collection companies whose services are used by most major research institutions worldwide.
As of June 1, 2015, we have received approximately 1,200 responses to our Phase 1 survey and approximately 500 responses to our Phase 2 survey. One other factor that distinguishes our research study is that our 2 surveys are also being circulated to non-English speakers. As of June 1, 2015, we have surveys circulating in English and Spanish and soon have a survey in French and Portuguese. In the future we hope to have the survey available in many other major languages.
Finally, unlike the other research studies and surveys that have had previously self-identified UFO related contact Experiencers, all of them being self-described “Abductees”, the FREE Experiencer Research Study sought out possible candidates by circulating this information to a mailing list of over 1,500 individuals who self registered with the old FREE website, “Experiencer.Co”. We have also circulated the survey to over 250 Facebook sites focusing on the following areas: Ufology, ETs (Extraterrestrials), ET Abductions, the Paranormal, Exopolitics, Consciousness, New Age, contact with non-human intelligent beings, MUFON sites, and ET Support, etc. In addition, we sent emails to all the State and International directors and administrators of the Mutual UFO Network, the largest Ufology organization in the world and to other Ufology, Abduction and Experiencer organizations worldwide. Thus, our mission was to inform as many individuals, organizations, and websites that might have knowledge and/or readers who are Experiencers of UFO related ET Contact. This comprehensive outreach for possible Experiencers of UFO related “ET Contact” has never been undertaken using both a quantitative and qualitative scientific based approach and certainly has not been publicized to such an extensive audience.
FREE has also recently established a separate committee to develop an academic research study to determine if there is a relationship between Experiencers of both UFO related ET Contact and individuals that have also had NDEs. Interestingly, our Phase 1 Survey has revealed that approximately 74%, (782) out of 1,062 individuals have had Out of Body Experiences. Our Phase 2 Survey has revealed that approximately 28%, (137) of 497 individuals have had BOTH an NDE experience and a UFO related ET Contact Experience. This committee is comprised of 5 NDE Experiencers, 4 non academic researchers and 2 retired professors (some of these individuals fall into more than one professional-discipline category). Retired tenured professors Dr. Jon Klimo and Dr. Bob Davis will Co-Chair this new research committee and supervise this new study but we are hoping that Dr. Klimo will take the lead.
Please note that FREE is also developing a new “State of the Art” website, to be completed by October 1, 2015, that will provide numerous academic articles and videos on the following topic areas:
- topic areas associated with the Post-Materialist Paradigm (PMP) approaches to the field of “Consciousness Studies”;
- articles and essays, targeted for both physicists and lay readers, on the latest PMP physics approaches that are trying to explain “Consciousness” and the nature of our reality;
- the diverse modalities of “Contact” with non human intelligent sentient beings as previously referenced in this document;
- numerous documents focused on the UFO related “ET Contact” Phenomena;
- the various on-going research based FREE ; and
- support for Experiences of ET and Paranormal Contact, and information on related organizations and providers, including the Experiencer Buddy Program.
Sometime in the Fall of 2015, we hope to invite other academics to our FREE “ACADEMIC CONSULTANT BOARD”. This Board will provide additional assistance and guidance to Dr. Rudy Schild, our Director, and our Board of Directors, for our current and future interdisciplinary research studies. The intended invitees are:
- Rick Strassman, MD: (human research with entheogenic substances)
- Dean Radin, Ph.D.: (PSI/Telepathy Experiments and Consciousness)
- Mario Beauregard, Ph.D.: (Consciousness and the Brain)
- Gary E. Schwartz, Ph.D.: (Consciousness and the After Life)
- Diane Powell, MD: (Consciousness and Autism)
- David Luke, Ph.D.: (Consciousness and Hallucinogenic Plants)
- Bernard Haish, Ph.D.: (Physics, Consciousness & Zero Point Energy)
- Bruce Greyson, MD: (Near Death Experiences and Reincarnation)
- Carlos S. Alvarado, Ph.D.: (PSI/Telepathy Experiments and Consciousness)
- Julie Beischel, Ph.D.: (Mediumship)
- Fariba Bogzaran, Ph.D.: (Lucid Dreaming)
- Russel Targ, Ph.D.: (Remote Viewing)
The other two categories of FREE will be non-academic “CONSULTANTS” and “VOLUNTEERS”. The CONSULTANTS will provide similar functions to our Academic Advisory Board but from a non-academic Experiencer point of view. These individuals have been working with and researching Experiencers for many years and they have a solid understanding of the “ET Contact Phenomenom”. The VOLUNTEERS will provide assistance to the Director, the Operations Manager and the Board of Directors in carrying out the activities of FREE.
Dr. Rudy Schild
The Dr. Edgar Mitchell Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial Encounters (FREE)
The Dr. Edgar Mitchell Foundation for Research into Extraterrestrial Encounters, FREE// FREE Experiencer Research Study Update