Strange & Paranormal / UFO Encounters

Hosted byGeorge Knapp

Strange & Paranormal / UFO Encounters

About the show

Mysterious Universe editor and podcast host Aaron Wright joined George Knapp to discuss some of the most unusual and disturbing stories he has published. Wright said he had startling episodes in his childhood involving sleep paralysis and a "darker than dark" figure standing in his room, which he suppressed for many years. When Wright moved into an apparently haunted house in Sydney, Australia, and began to experience a host of phenomena that he could not explain, this led to a deep fascination with the unknown. Wright described a case involving a "grim reaper" figure appearing as a skeletal form wearing a cloak, which appeared to a witness in the 1960s and seemed to forewarn of a death in the family.

Wright continued with the 1998 story of a couple with an 11-month old child. They moved into a house in the small town of Humpty Doo and began to see rocks and pebbles falling onto them both inside and outside, sometimes materializing in midair. The rocks started to spell out words on the floor before more bizarre and violent events occurred. Wright continued with the story of a star-crossed love between a couple who were members of warring aboriginal tribes. In despair, the woman drowned herself in a river, which then became the location of a curse and where subsequent drownings occurred regularly. He commented that there seems to be "a weird sort of aquatic spirit attached to this area." Continuing the theme, he recounted the story of a woman who moved into a new house and saw the figure of a woman in a bikini that "seemed to be hostile to her" and drew a friend's son in and tried to drown him in the pool.


In the second half, UFO researcher Ryan Sprague, who focuses on the people who have seen UFOs and had encounters, detailed how these dramatic events affected those involved with both positive and negative implications. Sprague said he was first exposed to the UFO issue at age 12 when he had a sighting of a triangular formation of lights on the St. Lawrence River. He "didn't know about UFOs or even think about them before then," but it compelled him to ask others about their own experiences beginning at age 13, when he interviewed his first witness. After speaking with scores of witnesses, Sprague has concluded that whatever is behind the phenomenon "is slowly, gradually preparing us for some sort of disclosure, however you define that word."

He recounted many of the stories he has collected for his two books of interviews with UFO witnesses, not a few of which involve the "orb" phenomenon. One was Australian Damien John Knott, who was followed home on his skateboard by a giant hovering red orb of light. The light phenomena has revisited him throughout his life, even appearing to news reporters who came to interview him. Another orb witness, Joe Kiernan, reported lights continuously hovering over a pond in his backyard, as well as "dancing" around in the sky. Kiernan ended up creating paintings of intricately constructed three-dimensional shapes, which he said began to appear in dreams. Sprague emphasized that we cannot ignore these sincere stories and that investigators must gain witnesses' trust and let them tell their stories, whether uplifting or traumatic.

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