The core narrative is Strieber’s internal conversations with his recently deceased wife, Anne. You can accept, or reject, his experience. I certainly think it’s possible that Anne is communicating with him. What she reveals about life (and the afterlife) is very interesting, but unfortunately it takes up only a small part of the book. The remainder is devoted to Strieber’s usual ruminations about the “Visitors,” speculations about mankind’s past, and various theological issues. I sincerely hope that, in future writings, Strieber continues to disclose Anne’s messages and communications, either through his online “Anne’s Diary” or in future books.
My readings of Strieber always involve a process of filtering; I’ve learned to strip out information that is contradictory, speculative, or too outlandish to be verifiable. It involves suspending my disbelief about some of his experiences to arrive at a certain narrative point, while tossing out others that I suspect did not happen in our physical consensus reality. But what I bring back from this is always worth it.
The primary impetus behind this book seems to be an effort to build a “bridge” between the world of the afterlife, and our physical world. Anne Strieber’s “return” after her passing is framed as part of a life’s work of monumental importance, something that needs to happen now, at this point in history. Why now? In his recent journal entry “Intense New Encounters and What They Mean,” Strieber declares that “what I have seen of the future is that we are about to undergo a combination of climate and economic upheaval that is going to fundamentally change our world and our lives.” While Strieber did not give the specifics of this upheaval, a plurality of my readers will doubtless agree with him.
As to the “when” of it, Strieber offers this: I ask Anne when it will happen:
“I see towers standing now that will be standing then, so not too far off.”
“A hundred years?”
“I see kids in playgrounds. That tells me, within their lifetimes.”
“You think in pictures? How does that work?”
“You see the future like that. You can’t see things that haven’t happened yet, but you can see people whose fates are intertwined with them. We don’t see futures, we see fates.”
“Anne’s” remark about not being able to foresee specific events, but being able to discern the probable future by glimpsing the fates of those living now, is one of those core truths of the type that I always find buried in Strieber’s writing. A while back, I blogged about the universal inability of many self-described seers, psychics, and prognosticators to predict events two feet ahead of them, much less in the coming months. In fact, their predictions of the future are often more “wrong” than statistically possible. But I noted that I and many others often had very accurate precognitive dreams, and some seers (such as Evelyn Paglini) could successful see future events unfold in their readings of their clients. The reasons that some predictions fail, while others succeed, is simple: our “future” exists not as an abstract series of impersonal events, but as individual life-plan experiences. There is no future outside of our consciousness. A “psychic” trying to describe events in 2050 by mentally projecting himself to that date will see only his projections. However, if he is somehow able to discern the life plan of a specific individual who will be living then, he can probably get an accurate glimpse of a general future.
(This, of course, is a gross oversimplification of the process. Our individual, specific fates exist only as probabilities, and there are many probable futures, generally speaking, that not everyone will share.)
A necessary caveat: Many prognosticators have tried to predict the specifics of these upcoming “earth changes,” and they have all failed spectacularly. Why, then, should we take Whitley Strieber’s predictions seriously?
Primarily, because anyone who has studied the climate change issue knows that these climate crises are not only serious and quite likely to happen, but the effects are beginning now. No crystal ball needed. And Strieber has been uncharacteristically consistent over the years on this one issue.
More to come...