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150 - A Unifying Meta-Theory of UFOs & The Weird with Sean Esbjörn-Hargens

Ep. 150

For Episode 150 we welcome back Sean Esbjörn-Hargens, one of the most formidable and daring intellects I know, and the author of a new paper integrating over 650 books on UFOs and the paranormal, from over 150 disciplines, to trace the outline of a unifying meta-theory of the weird. In this episode, we discuss how Sean reconciles ten different hypotheses for the UFO phenomenon with his “mutual enactment hypothesis,” an updated ontology based on reconstructive post-modernism and Indigenous ways of knowing. I tell the story of the most powerful and transformative experiences of my life, as a case study in high weirdness. We talk about the distinctions between the real, the Real, the hypo-real, and the hyper-real, and offer examples from film, literature, and comparative religion.


Do you have incredulous friends? Show them the extraordinary website Sean made with Tom Curren, WhatsUpWithUFOs.com

Read Sean’s paper, “Our Wild Kosmos!: An Exo Studies Exploration of the Ontological Status of Non-Human Intelligences”

Read its precursor, “An Ontology of Climate Change: Integral Pluralism and the Enactment of Multiple Objects”

Read Sean’s latest newsletter on recent UFO disclosures

Learn more about and enroll in Sean’s course on Exo Studies


If you believe in the value of this show and want to see it thrive, support Future Fossils on Patreon. Patrons gain access to over twenty secret episodes, unreleased music, our book club, and whatever else spills out of my overactive imagination.


Dig deeper with the Future Fossils episodes we reference in this conversation, including:

37 - Michaelangelo aka Void Denizen (Excavating the Future with "Paisley-ontology")

60 - Sean Esbjörn-Hargens Goes Meta on Everything: Integral Ecology & Impact

71 - JF Martel (On Sequels & Simulacra, Blade Runner 2049 & Stranger Things 2)

91 - An Oral History of The End of "Reality"

99 - Erik Davis on How to Navigate High Weirdness

113 - Sean Esbjörn-Hargens on Exostudies: Philosophical Explorations of the UFO Phenomenon

117 - Eric Wargo on Time Loops: Precognition, Retrocausation, and the Unconscious

126 - Phil Ford & JF Martel on Weird Studies & Plural Realities

132 - Erik Davis on Perturbations in the Reality Field

149 - Cultural Somatics & Ritual as Justice with Tada Hozumi, Dare Sohei, and Naomi Most


And stay tuned for my three-part conversation with Stuart Davis about (most of) my UFO experiences on his awesome Aliens & Artists Podcast!


Music in this episode:

“Delta Pavonis” by Michael Garfield

“Olympus Mons” by Michael Garfield

“Your Heart Comes Back Online” by Michael Garfield

“Out There” by Skytree

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188 - LARPing as a Nation-State with Jon Hillis & 0xZakk of CABIN DAO and Christian Lemp of Diamond DAO

Ep. 188
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187 - Fear & Loathing on the Electronic Frontier with Kevin Welch & David Hensley of EFF-Austin

Ep. 187
Find the complete show notes for this episode on Patreon. This episode was recorded live in Austin, Texas at the West China Tea House in partnership with EFF-Austin, a non-profit committed to the establishment and protection of digital rights and defense of the wealth of digital information, innovation, and technology. Founded in 1991 as a local sub-chapter of The Electronic Frontier Foundation and run as an independent organization, EFF-Austin promotes the right of all citizens to communicate and share information without unreasonable constraint— as well as the fundamental right to explore, tinker, create, and innovate along the frontier of emerging technologies. In this episode, I talk with Kevin Welch and David Hensley about why digital rights matter to our analog lives; whether and how the genies of rampant technological innovation can be forced back into the bottle; how to think about the inherent tensions between individuals and institutions; what esoteric traditions and superhero movies may have to teach us about living in the 21st century, and considerably more. I also make entirely too many references to Michael Crichton novels.I’ve collaborated with EFF-Austin on previous episodes of Future Fossils you may also enjoy:33 - Jon Lebkowsky (Pluralist Utopias & The World Wide Web's Wild West)92 - Panel: The Pre- and Post-History of VR, Surveillance, and Swarm IntelligenceAgain, Patreon is really the place you want to be checking out the resources for this show (and, of course, it's the place to go to take a shower in the awesome stuff I reserve for supporters).

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