The 1990s saw the alien abduction phenomenon reach positively stratospheric proportions. Much of this was as a result of two men: John E. Mack, M.D. and David M. Jacobs, Ph.D. It must be said, however, that they brought very different concepts and thoughts to the table. Mack, a Pulitzer-Prize-winning author (of a book on T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia) who was killed in 2004, in London, England, by a drunk driver, on a dark Saturday night, penned two books that left a big mark on 1990s-era Ufology. Their titles: Abduction and Passport to the Cosmos. Certainly, one of the chief reasons why Mack’s books became such talking points wasn’t just because of their subject-matter. It was because Mack was a Harvard Medical School professor – and he was talking about alien abductions from the perspective of them being all too shockingly real. Needless to say, it didn’t go down well with the bigwigs at Harvard, and to the extent that, in May 1994, Mack’s work in the field of alien abductions came under fire. The result, the Dean of the Harvard Medical School set up a group to carefully assess the nature of clinical care given by Mack to his growing body of abductees. The conclusions of the group were damning.
Nevertheless, Mack retained his standing at Harvard and continued his abduction-based work until the time of his death. Where Mack differed from so many other UFO researchers that were studying the phenomenon, was from the perspective of the spiritual nature of certain abduction events. Mack held the view that there was a deep spiritual aspect to the mystery, that people were transformed – in a positive fashion – by their experiences; he noted that post-abduction they often developed concerns about the environment, they began to ponder on the matter of life after death, on karma and fate, and on the nature of the human soul, and they experienced out of body experiences and near-death events – from which they came back positively transformed. Mack said: "The abduction phenomenon seems to me to be a part of the shift in consciousness that is collapsing duality and enabling us to see that we are connected beyond the Earth at a cosmic level."
And then there was Professor David M. Jacobs. Before were get to the matter of Jacobs, it is both important and relevant to note that the 1980s-1990s was also the period when another aspect of alien abduction lore reached its absolute pinnacle. It was the matter of what have become known as alien-human “hybrids.” Certainly, both the Antonio Villas Boas case of 1957 and the Betty and Barney Hill encounter of 1961 strongly suggested there was what we might call a "reproductive component" to abductions. Budd Hopkins’ work, showing that ova and sperm were being taken from kidnapped Americans, reinforced that particular theory even more. All of that, however, was overshadowed by the rise of the hybrids.
As the 1990s progressed, controversial, and even frightening, accounts surfaced of alien abductees encountering – usually on-board UFOs – young children that gave every appearance of being half-human and half-alien, and specifically of the “Gray” type. They looked human, but there were certain things that…were just not right. Their skin was pale, almost to the point of appearing anemic. Their limbs were thin, bony, and fragile-looking. Their eyes were overly large, and noticeably oval- or almond-shaped, exactly like those of the Grays. Their hair was thin and wispy. And it wasn’t just hybrid children that abductees reported encountering: it was hybrid fetuses, too. In may such cases, witnesses claimed to have seen such fetuses being grown - in huge, glass tanks filled with milky liquid.
The implication was, for some, terrifying: aliens were creating creatures that resembled us (providing one did not get too close a look at them), that could pass for us, that could move among us, and that might even have an agenda of infiltrating us – and yes, I do mean that from a sinister, and potentially hostile, perspective. There is something else too: the hybrids were the undeniable modern day equivalents of the so-called “Changelings” of centuries-old Irish lore concerning fairies – things created by the wee folk and which were designed to replace babies snatched in the night and whisked away to the domain of the fairies.