And despite having an ostensibly non-military remit, the organisation picked up the pieces of US space strategy from the military.
Space was 'owned' by the military for over ten years before the creation of NASA.
This incident occurred in 1947; the very same year as the Kenneth Arnold UFO sighting, Roswell, the creation of the CIA and the creation of the Department of the Air Force. (Remember that coincidence is things co-inciding.)
One of the OSI's UFO investigators was a man sometimes called Jack Martin... who also happened to be a bishop in a weird, fake church known as the American Orthodox Catholic Church or AOCC. (As was J Edgar Hoover.)
The AOCC has only bishops, no priests and no congregations. It appears in the FBI files relating to the JFK assassinations because basically everyone orbiting the main suspects was a member of a fake church whose bishops would investigate UFO incidents.
In the video below, researcher Peter Levenda talks about how the only building he has ever been able to find relating to this mysterious, fake church was in the Bronx. As I watched through it on the weekend, the penny dropped and landed in a weird corner of my brain.
This is the same mysterious group of fake priests described in Dead Names who accidentally attended Bobby Kennedy's funeral and -oh, I don't know- wrote the fucking Simonomicon.
That's when it occurred to me this fascinating presenter wasn't letting on all he knew. (But you should always know your audience so no judgement.)
One way or another, the Necronomicon story just got crazier. Because these bishops are also connected via a number of weird post-war figures with a really bizarre séance that happened in a farmhouse in Maine in 1952, involving a group of beings calling themselves The Nine.
The man at the centre of this séance was Andrija Puharich, US Army Captain and author of a government paper on the weaponisation of ESP. And this is the guy that is moving in the same murky circles as bishops Jack Martin and Fred Crisman.
The farmhouse in question was owned by his bizarro Round Table Foundation which appears to have received funding from the CIA.
Puharich first gathered together these nine people on a warm night in early June. But the most interesting results were actually achieved in New Year's Eve of the same year.
And it's a line-up that positively defines "could not make this up". The group included:
- Arthur Young, who invented the Bell helicopter. However at the end of WWII he abandoned military aviation to concentrate full-time on the paranormal.
- Arthur's wife, Ruth... previously of the Forbes dynasty. Her son, Michael, would get a job at Bell Aerospace through her and Arthur's influence. (Michael's wife got Lee Harvey Oswald his job at the book depository. She was learning Russian from Oswald's wife who was living with her in Irving, Texas. Oh, and her father worked for a CIA front called the Agency for International Development. Lee Harvey Oswald left the coffee company in New Orleans, saying to his co-workers he was "going to work for NASA." After the assassination, two other coffee company employees get jobs at NASA. Just saying.)
- Mary Bancroft; of the Bancroft dynasty who would much later sell the Dow Jones and Wall Street Journal to Murdoch. She also happened to be the mistress of the then-CIA chief. (The one JFK fired after the Bay Of Pigs after saying he was also going to break up the CIA... who conveniently went on to investigate JFK's death. Just saying.)
- Marcella Du Pont of the Du Pont family.
- Alice Bouverie who was born into the Astor dynasty. (Her father died on the Titanic and her first husband was a Czarist prince who would work for the OSS during WWII.)
Here's what happened at the séance:
These gods, who were nine in number as well, were part of one great, creator god known as Atum. The other gods consisted of Shu, Tefnut, Geb, Nut, Osiris, Isis, Seth, Nephthys, and sometimes Horus.
Communication with these entities was handled by the medium, an Indian gentleman referred to as Dr. D.G. Vinod, who slipped into a trance state at 12:15 AM and began speaking as 'the Nine' by 12:30. Afterwards Dr. Vinod would claim to have no memory of the conversation that preceded between the Ennead Nine and their human counterparts.
During the course of the seance the mystical Nine informed the human nine that they would be in charge of bringing about a mystical renaissance on Earth. From there the Nine ventured into quasi-scientific, philosophical constructs that eventually led to the acknowledgement that they, the Grand Ennead, were in fact extraterrestrial beings living in an immense spaceship hovering invisibly over the planet and that the assembled congregation had been selected to promote their agenda on Earth.
Not a bad collection of people to pull together if you wanted to promote a specific agenda over the second half of the twentieth century. Untold riches and connective power in one farmhouse. In fact, you have to wonder what percentage of American wealth was controlled by people related to the attendees.
Writing about the face on Mars and its relation to a descendant group sprung from this very séance, Chris Knowles points out:
And the other conundrum here is if the Council of Nine's psychics saw this thing before it was photographed in 1976, did NASA go looking for it solely based on their advice? What does that say about the influence of a group that most people could be excused for dismissing as a bunch of gullible New Agers?
The Nine would go on to surface in weird places for decades including near Uri Geller (the AP is Puharich, who first brought Geller to the US), President Ford, Gene Roddenberry (Deep Space Nine anyone?), Al Gore as well as Soviets surrounding Gorbachev who were instrumental in the collapse of communism as mentioned in this old Fortean Times piece. It's not unreasonable to assume there were many more such places.
From people who have met him, Simon is adamant that he didn't make the book up, that he did, in fact, find it in the home of AOCC-offshoot bishop William Prazky.
Of course, various people over the years have come forward claiming to have contributed design work for the motifs and such.
And of course, the convenient fire that destroyed the original document in Dead Names is patently untrue.
No one seriously expects a 1500-year-old document to have survived in a legible state down to the seventies. For literally dozens of reasons, the Necronomicon is not an antiquitous survival.
But here's where it gets pretty weird.
The origin of the document lies with a bunch of weird faux-catholic bishops who have been investigating UFO phenomena since the late forties, who were associated via Puharich with a séance in which American royalty contacted extraterrestrial beings, have direct ties to the founders of NASA (including as least one Nazi) and may have actually killed a president.
Channelled instructions from ancient beings from the stars, a 'fake' book about beings from the stars. What if Simon isn't lying but instead of an early Arabic Grimoire, the manuscript is an extradimensional download?
Let's try then for a selective, potted timeline of the Necronomicon:
- As per Dead Names, Some tenuous seals and references to Kutulu as some kind of Arabic underworld or possibly a being known as 'The Abandoner'. Whatever, the pre-Lovecraft stuff is pretty flimsy because obviously it's retrospective.
- Lovecraft includes The Necronomicon in his stories for the first time.
- Some of his other nerd friends include it in their stories.
- Lovecraft dies.
- A séance in Maine where rocket scientists and American royalty contact a group of aliens calling themselves The Nine. One of those present has sustained professional contact with shadowy alterna-bishops who themselves have a direct connection with the first Necronomicon manuscript. Other people at the séance will go on to house Lee Harvey Oswald's family in their home. Still others will spend decades working with Nazis to build spaceships and put humans on the moon for official reasons that still don't make sense to this day.
- Simonomicon published. It will become the most-published Grimoire ever in the English language. It purports to be 'real' (whatever that means).
- Lovecraft's mythos is codified into a coherent, workable form by a games company in the eighties. They fill the holes in the mythos, Jurassic Park-style by blending it with some now-slightly-out-of-date Sumerian cosmology. (An important step too few people focus on.)
- Other Necronomicon systems, cleaving closer to the coherent mythos, are published: books, tarot sets, etc.
- A slew of Cthulu B-movies of varying quality but consistent awesomeness are released over the last twenty five years.
- That South Park episode.
So when it says in The Apophenion that the Necronomicon "fell in from elsewhere and disintegrated on impact" in my mind it really does start to look like a spaceship crashing to earth and flinging pieces over time and space. This is a quote from Simon's Dead Names:
Kenneth Grant, the major interpreter of the works of magician Aleister Crowley, sees in occult practices the same evidence for interstellar contact through ritual. Grant also links this concept with the Necronomicon mythos, and sees in its magical system a method for communicating with extraterrestrial beings, beings we believe are angels, demons, or other spiritual forces. If we look at the system of the Golden Dawn -the British occult society that exerted so much influence on twentieth century magic- we see only faint echoes of this point of view, burdened as it is by references to ancient Egyptian gods and Qabalistic and Masonic terminology.
The magical groups that have sprung up around the Necronomicon, however, are consciously aware of this aspect to their practice and realize that the entities whose presences are made known during the course of their rituals may be described as either spiritual or extraterrestrial forces... or both.
It is entirely possible that the Sumerian religious experience -and hence, all religious experience in the world that derives from it- is based on what could be the most important and profound psychic event in the history of humanity: contact with beings from another planet or star.
One final piece of the story that doesn't fit anywhere. Puharich:
So to recap, we have a brilliant doctor and research scientist drafted into the US intelligence network for which he would continue an on again, off again relationship with till at least the 1970s. Much of his working during this time revolved around psychic ability and drugs and that would help unlock this ability. In the same time he was also channelling entities that claimed to be both the gods of ancient Egypt as well as space aliens, with the backing of wealthy and powerful patrons with deep ties to the military-industrial complex.
The enigmatic convener of the séance was obsessed with finding a chemical to stimulate psychic ability and published a widely-disseminated book on the use of psychoactive mushrooms which was used as a reference by Tim Leary and possibly the CIA... ultimately 'switching on' millions of people (including myself if I'm honest).
Clearly, on that night in Maine in 1952, The Neighbours were in a talkative mood.