Investigating the ‘Dream’ Memory through Regression
In 1995, several years after undertaking therapy, it suddenly and serendipitously occurred to Forrest that the childhood dream could actually be a false or incorrect memory of a more in-depth and detailed event. (NB. In contact experiences, false memories are sometimes referred to as ‘screen memories’, either incorrectly recalled memories, or alternative memories implanted in the subconscious mind by alien entities in contact situations, often to protect the human participant). He decided to consult a qualified hypnotherapist to investigate the dream memory.
The regression therapist guided Forrest back to 1950, when he was five years old and living with his parents and three sisters in Long Beach, California, USA, asking him to focus on the time of that dream. At this age, Forrest was already familiar with many aircraft and he would often sit in his yard and watch them in the flight pattern at the Long Beach airport, just two miles away.
(regression transcript): ‘I’m standing in the middle of my backyard. And there is an airplane! It has a pilot in it and he’s circling around my backyard, except he is going real slow. He is at the controls and I can see his arms and shoulders sticking up above the cockpit and he’s wearing a funny helmet.’
The ‘screen memory’
Forrest and the pilot looked intently at one another, and he somehow knew the pilot wanted to talk to him. He described watching as the airplane circled around the edge of his yard from east to south, and at this point he made the interesting comment that the airplane ‘must be facing the other way’ because it ‘looked different’. His observations of the airplane now changed somewhat: he described its shiny silver-coloured metal and that it was not very big, and in fact he was no longer sure if it had wings or propellers, but it had a large fuselage, leading him to think it must be a small jet. The pilot had conveyed to him (during the experience as a child) that the airplane was moving too slowly and running low on fuel, and yet Forrest noticed the object was actually hovering when it was above the yard, something he knew was impossible for an aircraft.
Forrest could see the pilot leaning out of the cockpit looking right at him, telling him about something dangerous that indicated to Forrest the airplane might crash. He noted the pilot had seemed happy when he first saw Forrest, but quickly became scared – an incongruous memory. He could not see the pilot’s mouth moving and received these communications as thoughts. The airplane moved back to the position where he had first seen it, and he somehow ‘knew’ the airplane would not be there very long.
At this point Forrest described a dual perception, where he felt as if he and the pilot were one-and-the-same. He commented the pilot did not look like him, but he postulated that maybe the pilot might even be him when he is older, but that this thought seemed ‘kind of silly’. Nevertheless, he could feel the pilot’s emotions of being scared, to the extent that Forrest believed the pilot might crash and die. Forrest watched as the airplane moved behind a group of trees beyond the neighbour’s house, again leading him to believe the airplane was about to crash, and he felt great sadness.
‘I want to keep watching him to see what he is doing. (Long pause) I see the airplane changing and I don’t believe it! I think it’s changing into a round … like a flying saucer! It’s lowered a stairway down to my yard and whoever’s inside wants me to come up there. I don’t want to go!’
Eventually curiosity got the better of Forrest and he mounted some twenty steps through a hole in the centre of the bottom of the craft, now determined to go inside to see what would happen. It was dark inside the craft, ‘like night-time, like being in a movie theatre, and the screens are bright enough to see what’s going on’, and once his eyes adjusted to the dim light, he saw there were ‘people’ in there watching the screens. Significantly, Forrest felt as if he already knew them, and they knew him too.
Forrest established that he was on the lower floor of a two-storey craft. The occupants reminded him of ants because of the shape of their heads and dark eyes, but their torsos were otherwise human-like in form. He described their skin as reddish-brown and they had antennae or feelers like ants, which protruded from their foreheads. They were not wearing any clothes that he recalled.
Forrest felt the entities knew he was now on-board the craft, but they didn’t pay too much attention to him, allowing him to quietly observe them from behind as they continued looking at their screens. About eight dark screens were positioned on consoles around the interior perimeter of the craft, each with red and white lines around the edges. Forrest had the impression that one entity in particular was monitoring what was going on in his neighbourhood, and as his eyes adjusted to the red light emitted from the screen, he realised he was looking at a bird’s-eye-view of his street. This was confirmed when he saw movement on the screen, indicating the craft was drifting over his neighbourhood and he observed telephone poles, houses, and people’s backyards going by.
‘They’re very friendly to me. I feel like I’ve been here before and they’re my friends … like I’ve known them from another time. I feel very comfortable in here. Now they’ve put up a little chair for me to sit on and watch over this one guy’s shoulder … watch the screen. That’s nice.’
The craft moved off to the south, passing over the city, and young Forrest was captivated by his aerial view. They eventually floated over the beach and out over the sea, and Forrest expressed his fear of water, telling the ‘ant’ entity in front of him that he didn’t want to go out too far. The craft continued on a broad curving path back towards Forrest’s neighbourhood, passing right over Long Beach Airport on the way, where Forrest observed airplanes taking off and other aircraft moving on the tarmac.
‘Now they’re gonna pull up to my yard and let me out, I think. I’m going down the stairway and now I can see the flying saucer a little more clearly … it almost looks like a toy. I’m laughing and grinning because I had a really fun ride! I’m not supposed to tell anybody. All I have to do is pretend like it didn’t happen … I’m on the ground … and now I can’t decide if that pilot was really real. I think they told me they would be back again another time.’
A Memory Trigger Placed in the Subconscious?
Forrest’s first experience of flying was at the age of seven when his father took him for a flight in a Piper Cub. He remembered feeling disappointment that it wasn’t as fantastic as he had imagined or expected it to be – an unusually low-key response from a child who had not flown before and who loved watching aircraft.
Forrest commented that the black screens he observed on-board the ant people’s craft, with glowing red lines, reminded him of when he was in the Navy, inside the darkened radar room where the screens also glowed red. He realised it had looked very familiar to him – immediately comfortable – ‘like going home’.
It is possible a screen memory of an airplane was used by the ant people to pique Forrest’s interest, so that when the object appeared from behind the trees, now appearing as a flying saucer, Forrest was less likely to be scared and more likely to go onboard. The memory of an aircraft was also a safer one for the child to store in his subconscious and recall as a dream. He stated, ‘I think they told me they would be back again another time’. This proved correct and Forrest has since uncovered other contacts that took place in childhood.
Forrest’s childhood dream memory finally became reality, an account of an actual contact experience on-board a craft. A significant component of this experience is his description of a ‘pilot’ flying a small ‘airplane’, who expressed a fear that he was going to crash, and Forrest felt he and the pilot were one-and-the-same. We could speculate that this portion of the contact experience, later recalled as a dream, not only had the dual purpose as a screen memory to reduce fear at the time of the experience, but was possibly also designed to act as a trigger, initiating a powerful response – a fear of flying – at a later point in his life. In fact, this fear quite suddenly occurred forty-one years later, and as a result Forrest recalled the ‘dream’ in therapy, and sadly it was intensified and initiated by an actual air crash. In discussion, Forrest stated, ‘This is an interesting way to draw attention to these dreams and memories, by using a fear or a terror to get my conscious self to look at this.’ It was a wake-up call, and spurred Forrest into investigating the dream through regression, a life-changing experience revealing contact with an alien species.
Other Encounters with the Ant People
‘Ant-like’ entities have been reported by experiencers/abductees worldwide for decades. Some researchers have speculated these are actually descriptions of Greys, however many of the reports contain the distinct descriptions of antennae or feelers protruding from the foreheads of these entities, and their reddish-brown skin.