“Die, Researchers, Die!”

Posted by: Loren Coleman on April 7th, 2008

sheldrake

Perhaps it is a coincidence but on March 22, 2008, a renegade alignment of “thinkers” calling themselves the RRRgroup (although known by some critics as the “KKKgroup”) wrote a blog (together?) entitled “Death(s) will clean the UFO palate.”

They begin by stating,
“When ufology’s old-guard passes on – Dick Hall, Stan Friedman, Kevin Randall, John Schuessler, and even the 60ish Jerry Clark to name a few – taking hangers-on and sycophants with them (and you know who they are), the UFO palate will be cleansed.”

The RRRGroup then mention others who “include Paul Kimball, Nick Redfern, Greg Bishop, and Mac Tonnies.”

I found such statements outrageous, incredible, and unwise. I said, partially, in a comment directed to the RRRGroup:

Every “new” generation sees themselves as having the “real” solutions or the next best outside-the-box suggestions. Of course, it will only be something you will reflect upon when the next generation after you, the new group of “Young Ones” start nibbling at your aging heels….

It’s always been that way, and it will continue so into the future.

But calmness is rare and, instead, dark days are afoot when people like these young bloggers feel it is cool to expound on the positive value in the forthcoming deaths of their elders, mentors, and older writers.

It is now with some concern I reflect that on April 2, 2008, a week and half after these words were written by the RRRGroup, Rupert Sheldrake, 65, of London, while speaking at the “10th International Conference on Science and Consciousness” at the La Fonda Hotel, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, was attacked by a much younger man. (The photo at top is Sheldrake being taken to the hospital after the attempt on his life.)

Sheldrake had just taken a break at 3:00 p.m., when Hirano Kazuki, 33, of Yokohama, Japan, stabbed Sheldrake in the leg.

The Santa Fe New Mexican described the wound in graphic detail: “Sheldrake had a 2- or 3-inch cut on the front of his left thigh, just above his kneecap, causing blood to spurt some 8 inches into the air as he lay on his back.”

A statement of probable cause quoted witnesses to the stabbing as saying the man, Hirano Kazuki, had a knife in his hand, pushed people out of the way as he approached the stage where Rupert Sheldrake was speaking and tried to get onto the stage. According to the statement, Kazuki tripped as he tried to stab Sheldrake in the chest and stabbed him in the left thigh instead.

Sheldrake’s keynote address was entitled “Memory and Morphic Resonance,” and his workshop was “Fields of the Mind: Experimental and Research and Practical Intuition,” according to a catalog on the conference.

Dr. Rupert Sheldrake studied biochemistry at the Clare College, Cambridge, UK, graduating with a double First Class honors degree. He was a Frank Knox fellow at Harvard, studying philosophy and history. He returned to Cambridge where he gained a Ph. D. in biochemistry and was a Fellow at Clare College. He was a Research Fellow of the Royal Society.

In recent years, Sheldrake has been an intellectual writer of some note on the topics of animal and plant development and behavior, telepathy, perception and metaphysics, which skeptics and critics have called “pseudoscience.” Writers like Paul Kimball, Greg Bishop, and Nick Redfern, the same ones whom the RRRGroup mentioned, have noted people like Sheldrake’s thoughts with favor. Sheldrake’s material is marginal to ufology, although central to some Fortean thoughts, but overlaps, no doubt, have occurred.

Getting into the mind of the Japanese stabber seems to be key. But who knows why this individual attacked Sheldrake? Amazingly, people can read articles and watch visual presentations which stimulate their future actions, as I document throughout The Copycat Effect. When statements about how the “deaths” of certain researchers will result in “cleaning the palate” are added to the blogsphere, can anyone say who is reading them and what impact they might have?

What is known about Hirano is that he had been attending the “10th International Conference on Science and Consciousness.” Other attendees said he had been acting oddly. They said he confronted Sheldrake earlier in the week, telling Sheldrake that he heard voices and saw demons. Another featured speaker at the conference told the man he was ‘full of negative energy’ and counseled him to ‘calm down,’ reported Evan Mecham, an attendee from Broomfield, Colorado.

Hirano is being held on a $200,000 bail.

Sheldrake is expected to fully recover, physically.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.


20 Responses to ““Die, Researchers, Die!””

  1. Galea responds:

    Angels tread slowly where fools rush in.

    Our elders hold such a wealth of knowledge and have experienced the ups and downs of many different experiences and to not heed their advice will only hasten our own mistakes.

    It’s a shame; glad to hear he will recover.

  2. Carla responds:

    That’s horrid, in many, many different ways. My best wishes go out to Dr. Sheldrake.

    Stifling others’ scientific theories and inquiries–no matter the method–is the antithesis of the scientific spirit…and the scientific method.

  3. Alligator responds:

    There are a lot of things I don’t subscribe to or believe in terms of ufology or even cryptozoology. But statements and positions like those mentioned in this article are way out of line. Wishing for people to pass on that you don’t agree with or might think “kooky” is really pretty awful and immoral. Everyone and everything will pass in its due time, including the bloggers writing this. Gaeila’s analogy above still holds true.

    Well said about each generation seeing themselves as the “anointed” with all the answers. We thought that about ourselves in the 60s and 70s and readily discarded the wisdom of the past generations. Now that I look back, I realize how much ridiculous crap we believed. I bet 50 years from now, the current generation will probably appear equally ridiculous and in the dark in many areas. We as a species don’t learn from history. Many don’t even want to hear history.

  4. Ceroill responds:

    The phrase that sticks in my mind is “clean the ufo palate”. What the heck? I can’t quite make out any sense in using a cooking analogy in this kind of diatribe.

  5. Greg Bishop responds:

    Loren,

    I’m glad you have posted about this connection. I was also disturbed by the RRR post, and left a comment:

    “I have never said that I was part of a new generation that was going to clean out the old ideas. I have in fact said that some of the older ufologists are the people whose shoulders we stand on. I don’t really agree with them all the time, but so what?”

    It seems that they simply want to stir up debate, but often do so in negative or even vicious ways. This guarantees an audience, but not a sizable one, and the people who are attracted to this sort of thing are usually there to watch the dogfight, not contribute something useful.

    I don’t think it’s a real danger, but I do hope that the seed of something this violent is not planted in someone’s brain for future attacks on others. Freedom of speech should be protected, as long as it’s not a call to violence (the “fire in a crowded theater” analogy.)

  6. HulkSmashNow responds:

    Unfortunately, as we discover time and time again, people continue to be irretrievably stupid. This story and the fact that we remember the murder of Rev. King forty years ago just keep that theory alive and well.

  7. Artist responds:

    Loren –

    Many of us Cryptomundians, yourself included, are members in good standing of the “Old Guard”…

    Let’s ALL watch our steps!

    Fuz

  8. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Ah, yes. The perennial grudge of the younger generations, that always feel their seniors are ‘keeping them down’. Which of course in this day and age of electronic communications is an utter nonsense; but what do I know? I’m 34, an old fogey according to these “N00B-fologists” 🙂

  9. crowmagnumman responds:

    What the deuce is wrong with this generation? And I say that as a young member of that generation. Old age and respect used to go hand in hand. This attitude on display here is just madness.

  10. sschaper responds:

    It’s all Cowboy Bob’s fault.

  11. CamperGuy responds:

    The man heard voices in his head was a clear red flag. Authorities should have been alerted at that time. “Son of Sam” serial killer claimed to have heard such voices.
    Why don’t these voices ever tell people to do something constructive with all due respect to Joan of Arc?

    It is going to be unfortunate if the attacker read the blog.

    The blog seems to say that new ideas cannot flourish in the face of old ideas being supported by the old guard. Aren’t all new ideas forced to cross this hurdle? The world is flat vs. the world is round new idea comes to mind. The article is not logical to me.

  12. Loren Coleman responds:

    This specific blog entry is about ideas, generational differences, researchers, and attempted assassinations in the land of non-mainstream thinking.

    It is not about ufology, and thus comments that wish to begin discourses on ufological thoughts and criticisms will not be supported and published here. (You will not see those here, for very long.)

    For those that understand the underlying metaphorical themes regarding how some in cryptozoology wish to “overthrow” the elders in our field, you get it.

    Thank you for staying on the topic at hand.

  13. bill green responds:

    Hey Loren & everyone! Wow, this is a very interesting article. Researchers are always battling over new or old info about Sasquatch, naturally, in a serious way. But it is never in a way where it causes someone harm.

  14. springheeledjack responds:

    It’s always easy to get on a blog or somewhere in cyberspace and make bold comments, like about waiting for the old generations to die off. AND it’s also short sighted, ’cause as we all know, new thinkers are right behind them. In the crypto case, cryptozoology has hardly died out with Heuvelmans generation. And as we speak I am passing along my love of cryptozoology to my boy.

    Making such statements just shows a lack of maturity and intelligence. Again and again, hey if you don’t believe something fine, don’t believe, but it’s the fanatics who try to tell others what they should and should not believe (or can and can’t believe) that are the people we need to keep in check.

    And in this particular case, yes, I think the red flags were in place on that individual. Of course, it’s hard to recognize the red flags a lot of times until after the fact.

    For the rest of us, I think we can count on the next generations keeping up the hunt for cryptids, ufos, etc. despite a few bloggers who try to talk for the bulk of us.

  15. kithra responds:

    If anyone wants to send their get well wishes direct to Rupert Sheldrake’s site, as I did as soon as I heard the news, here’s the email address:
    pam@telepet.demon.co.uk

  16. hudgeliberal responds:

    I am pushing 42..to some that is ancient to others that is “prime of life”. I just know that to me,the elders of the UFO and Crypto scene get my upmost respect. As a child growing up in the very late 60’s and throughout the 70’s,these men were the first “grown ups” that I ever heard discussing things like UFOs,Bigfoot,Loch Ness etc. in a serious manner. The documentaries and television series of the 70’s that hooked so many of us and introduced us to cryptozoology and UFOs,almost always featured men like Friedman,Hall,Byrne,Krantz,Dahinden,Green and others who have become sort of legends to those of my generation. Although many of them have fought and argued time and time again,it never came to situations like Loren explains above. These young “idiots” should be locked up..period. Sure,we all grow and learn and theories come and go as they are proven or disproven…that is science. That is how we learn and grow. I know that anytime I have the chance to talk or listen to one of my elders..I do. People need to realize,that all seniors,regardless of education or intelligence level..are walking history books. They all have lived and experienced a lot of history in many different ways and each have their own unique stories and ideas..not just Ufologists or Cryptozoologist..but just your everyday elder statesmen/women. If we fail to learn from our elders..then like they say,”those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it”. These RRR idiots would do good to take heed to that statement. Kudos to the elders of Ufology and Cryptozoology. They paved the way for sites like this. With the newfound interest and surge of television programs dealing with the cryptid world,we should take advantage and learn all we can while the interest and funds are there. I say that we must also include the “veterans” in the field and use their knowledge and experience to continue what they started years ago. Peace.

  17. hudgeliberal responds:

    As for sasquatch and all the “new thinking”,well,new ideas are great but I still feel deep in my heart that if we ever do prove that our creature exists,it will be some crypto-lover who just heads out into the forest/mountains and sets up a campground..just like the “old school” men like Dahinden,Byrne and others. It is great to try new strategies and to use new technology,I just feel that it should not always end up in a fight or screaming and yelling. Why cant people talk like adults anymore? Why cant we have different ideas and opinions without hating each other for it..why cant we use them and work them together?? For all the technology and advancements in science,it seems we humans are just a very flawed creature.

  18. Bigfootnut99 responds:

    Loren,

    I’d just like to say that the “RRR” group is not representative of our generation as a whole. They are the exception, not the rule. I personally feel deeply honored to be able to “stand on the shoulders of giants”, as it were.

  19. cryptidsrus responds:

    Hope Sheldrake recovers soon…

    Get well soon, Sir!!!

    I second what ARTIST, RED_PILL_JUNKIE, and CAMPERGUY said.

    The “new guard” seems to think the “old guard” has totally bad ideas and only they, the “young turks,” so to speak, have all the answers. NOT TRUE.

    Reminds me of Newton’s remarks about “standing on the shoulders of giants.”

  20. CryptoHaus_Press responds:

    i think generational conflicts are a sad reflection of the inability of all humans to avoid segregation along cultural lines.

    like some have said, taking one obviously mentally disturbed individual and the rantings of others equally ’empathetically challenged’ in the RRR writings and applying that brush to an entire generation is not unlike saying all Baby Boomers wanted to bankrupt America’s future because of W’s failed leadership and the failure of the largely Boomer-aged Congress to prevent it.

    or blaming the ‘Greatest Generation’ for the only bombing of a civilian city not once but twice to end the Japanese portion of WW2.

    in essence, it’s a reductionist point of view. it fails to also take into account the sufferings of each generation at the hands of the generations preceeding it.

    i’m guilty of this a lot. i tend to blame the various preceedings generations at times; at other times, i realize there is humanity in all age groups, and that some elderly and middle-aged people deserve enormous respect if not for wisdom than simply enduring human reality for so many years without giving up.

    it’s a thankless task to survive, see so much horror committed by so few for the unfortunate misery of so many, again and again, i think.

    but you know, there ARE always latent sociopaths in every generation.

    for every Einstein, there is a Stalin. for every John Lennon, a Charlie Manson. for every hope, there is a failure. it’s the balance and unbalance of life, as far as i can determine.

    sadly, our latent problems know no bounds, either religious, cultural, metaphysical, or generational.

    we are wounded and we are strong; we are monsters (at times) and we are (at times) saints.

    a good thought to keep in mind when we discuss cryptids; for who is to say, for example, that supposing its existence, a ‘bigfoot is all good’ or ‘bigfoot is all bad’ when we are honest?

    could not some be ‘good’ and others be ‘bad’ without either invalidating the tribe as a whole?

    if not, we have a lot of explaining to do if we ever DO make ‘contact’ with alien life forces or Fortean ‘beyond our knowledge’ forces.

    after all, we cannot even agree amongst ourselves all too often on a course of action, and yet all of us who are alive and reading these thoughts are responsible at some level, for example, for greenhouse emissions, continued warfare, etc.

    IF of course you agree with my statements. 😉




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