Are aliens real? Do UFOs really exist? These questions, once relegated to the confines of conspiratorial enterprises, are now legitimately being pondered among some scientists, academics — and even in the halls of Congress.
It’s an issue Dr. Hugh Ross, an astrophysicist and apologist, has long researched and explored.
“I became a UFO expert, but not on purpose,” he recently told “Billy Hallowell’s Playing With Fire.” “I was an amateur astronomer before I became a professional astronomer.”
Ross eventually found himself handling UFO reports at universities, exploring claims people made about aliens and unidentified phenomena. And he came to some fascinating conclusions.
“About 99% of what people would report to me as UFOs, I could explain as natural phenomena, a hoax, or secret government military activity,” Ross said. “But there’s a 1% residual that falls in a different category, and these would be UFO phenomena.”
Listen to Ross explain the nature of these alien encounters and what he’s observed:
He said these reports violated physics, yet there was purportedly evidence indicating they were “real phenomena.” Ross said many scientists won’t look seriously at these claims, as they’re not open to the possibility of “non-physical reality.”
“But, as a Christian, as a believer in the inerrancy of the Bible, I do believe in the existence of non-physical reality,” she said. “Because the Bible tells us God created two different species of intelligent life — one that’s constrained by the physics of the universe, and one that is not.”
With humans in the material realm and angels in the spiritual, Ross said new possibilities emerge when understanding claims of alien life and UFOs.
Rather than literal space creatures, Ross believes alien encounters are actually spiritual manifestations.
Citing details from claims of space crashes, landings, and supposed extraterrestrial encounters, the scientist said there’s never any debris and artifacts left behind — a fact he finds notable.
“If it was a physical craft crashing into the earth, you’d be able to recover some debris and artifacts,” he said. “But the fact that you see a crater, and melted snow, and damaged vegetation, means [it’s] something real.”
As for the human reaction to these encounters, Ross also noted they are “never beneficial” and interactions are “always deleterious.”
“The best you’re going to come away from with one of these encounters is recurring, terrifying nightmares,” he said. “Worst case scenario, you get killed.”
Reports of alien encounters also mirror what some have experienced during claims of demonic activity, he said. From going into trances to engaging in automatic writing, Ross believes the parallels between possession and purported interactions with extraterrestrials cannot be ignored.
The scientist also raised another issue: his belief that people in the occult are more likely to experience alien encounters. In fact, he said nations where there’s a “high incidence of occult involvement” will also see a much higher incidence of claims of alien encounters and UFOs.
“What you notice in these close encounters, it’s exclusively experienced by people who have significant involvement in the occult,” he said. “And when you remove that occult factor, that’s the end of the UFO encounters.”
Ross continued, “Increase the degree of occult, you increase the frequency of these UFO encounters.”
As a scientist and Christian, he said he wants to see people “close the doors” that allow for such experiences and separate from practices that could open pathways to what he believes is demonic in nature.
“These fallen angels can take whatever form they choose,” he said. “They can appear as your dead grandfather. They can appear as a flying saucer. They can appear as a leprechaun. And so that’s why it tells us in 1 John, ‘Tests the spirits.’ Don’t believe every supernatural being that approaches you — put them to the test.”
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Ross’ comments come as the U.S. and other nations become increasingly interested in the possibility of alien life. The conversation, of course, is nothing new. In 2008, the Rev. Jose Gabriel Funes, then head of the Vatican Observatory, said he saw no conflict between believing in aliens and the Bible.
“How can we exclude that life has developed elsewhere,” he reportedly said at the time. “Just as there is a multiplicity of creatures on earth, there can be other beings, even intelligent, created by God. This is not in contrast with our faith because we can’t put limits on God’s creative freedom.”
And in 2021, there was a report that NASA was engaging religious leaders to discern how people of faith would respond to the existence of aliens.
More recently, the issue has gained traction following congressional testimony alleging the U.S. has a secret program to capture and investigate UFOs, something the U.S. government has denied.
Yet with all of this interest, people like Ross take a different view: that the matters before us are spiritual in nature and must be treated as such.