Sunday, July 28, 2013

Summer event and autumn planning

My five weeks holiday disappeared all too quickly. But the weather has been great and these last three days have been filled with various activities. Anders Berglund, the new chairman of UFO-Sweden arrived on Friday 26th. As the new director of our national UFO organization it is important for Anders to be briefed on all the files and data in AFU so Friday afternoon was spent checking our ten premises, especially the report achives and organizational files of UFO-Sweden. Friday evening we were invited to Tobias Lindgren who offered us nice sandwiches and beers.

Anders Berglund studying the UFO-Sweden files

Anders in magazine archive

Saturday 27th we went by car to the annual summer event and party at the cottage of Carl-Anton Mattsson and his wife Britt-Marie. These events are a combination of contest, quiz and party, with good food and coffee. This year was something of a record with around 25 participants. After coffee and cake Carl-Anton led the group for a stroll in the woods where he had prepared twenty tricky questions to answer, usually on astronomy and geography. On this stroll we also found blueberries and wild strawberries to eat.

Tricky questions here

Håkan Ekstrand with the quiz

After lunch we were all invited to the contest with five different games, minigolf, throwing saucers, shooting, darts with balloons and trying to throw a golfball into a nesting box (with no bird of course). Total winner was Dan Mattsson by I succeded in getting a medal as number one throwing saucers. Many thanks to Carl-Anton and Britt-Marie for this excellent event and all the good food and fellowship. 

Mats Nilsson throwing saucers

Rickard was pretty good with the rifle

Mats tries to get the golf ball into the nesting box

Proud winner Dan Mattsson

I got a medal for throwing saucers

All the participants at the summer event

Today Anders Berglund, Tobias Lindgren, Johan Gustavsson and I met at AFU to do some preplanning for UFO-Sweden field investigators course October 19-20, 2013. We discussed interesting and good UFO cases that will be studied by the field investigators. This year we have booked Föllingen Hotell as our new facility for the course. We are all looking forward to experience this new place, nicely situated at lake Föllingen in Östergötland. 

Johan Gustavsson, Tobias Lindgren and Anders Berglund studying UFO reports

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Owls and UFOs

For many years I have been collecting owl figurines of various types and material. I became fascinated by these unusual birds symbolizing both wisdom, magic and mysticism and my collection now comprises something like 60+ owls. But it was not until the last couple of years that I became aware of the connection between UFO sightings and owls. There are now several internet sites dedicated to investigating and documenting this connection.

Part of my collection

One of my favourites

According to tradition owls are associated with shape-shifting. In the AFU clippings archive I found a very unusual humanoid report possibly involving this phenomenon. It was printed in the Swedish daily Smålands-Posten, August 8, 1987 and the observation occurred in the summer of 1980, not far from Blomstermåla in the Swedish province Småland. The headline has the spectacular claim " I saw the devil".

In the late summer of 1980 Swedish-American Ingvar Oskar Johansson from Chicago is on holiday in Sweden. This evening he is travelling by car from the Eastern coast to Åseda. In the back seat his eleven year old son is sleeping. A beautiful moon is shining over the trees. Not far from Blomstermåla the sky is suddenly lighted up with a blue light and a large owl appears in front of the car. Ingvar can hear its cry as the owl lands on the windscreen. The face of the owl appears very human and this scares Ingvar as he feels like the owl is looking at him. After a few moments it lifts and disappears.

After travelling a couple of miles Ingvar has his next experience with the unknown. Not far from Kråksmåla he notice what he first believes is an animal coming up from the side of the road. This creature is floating up in the air in front of the car. Ingvar can´t see its face but it is covered with brown hair, has two legs, a tail, two horns and long ears. The creature floats just above the car and Ingvar is afraid its been hit so he stops and takes a look around but find no trace of, whatever he saw. The rest of the journey is quiet. After this event Ingvar has talked to relatives and friends in Småland but no one has experienced anything like this.

In the UFO-Sweden report archive I found another observation involving an owl and UFO. In the summer of 1966 two young men are travelling by moped to Sörbo in the Swedish province Dalarna. Time is around 22 PM. They take a short brake to pee and then discoveres an owl sitting on a post beside the road. But looking up they also notice something else. A large silver coloured craft hanging in the sky about 150 meters above the ground. They don´t mention the shape of the craft but it is surrounded by a strange light. The craft moves slowly across the nearby fields and now and then emits flashes of light. The boys decides to follow the craft and soon observere it landing in a field. When on the ground it appears to be surrounded by some sort of fog. Light is coming from what could be windows and the boys notice movements by what appears to be figures in the fog and light. When the boys try to get a closer look the craft leaves the ground and accelerates with very high speed, at the same time producing flashes of light.

This just a sample of Swedish cases involving owls and UFOs. There are probably several more in the archive. I know of one more case but the connection between the owls and UFO is not so clear in this observation. A deeper study in the Swedish folklore archives on owls could probably yield more data.  

Saturday, July 13, 2013

AFU visitors

As AFU is open on a daily basis we have a steady stream of visitors to the archive. University students searching information for their theses, especially from the disciplines ethnology, history of religions and history of ideas. Representatives from various organizations and achives asking for a presentation and demonstration of the AFU facilities and files. Field investigators from UFO-Sweden looking for data on specific UFO cases. People from the local community who borrow books from our extensive library and, during the summertime, holiday visitors just passing by for a chat and to have a look at the archive.

This week has been no exception regarding visitors. On Monday July 8, Clas Svahn arrived together with a team from the Swedish Utbildningsradion, Swedish Educational Broadcasting Company, Keith Foster and Sebastian Gröndahl. They are working on an series in English on UFOs and conspiracy theories and have recently visited the Roswell UFO Museum. Clas related some famous Swedish UFO cases, especially the Ghost Rockets of 1946 and I presented AFU and its history. The series will be sent during the spring of 2014.

From left: Håkan Blomqvist, Keith Foster, Clas Svahn, Sebastian Gröndahl

On Tuesday 9, we were visited by one of the real oldboys in Swedish ufology, Mats Nilsson, who started his ufological career already in 1967. He has for many years been a member of the UFO Sweden board and is responsible for the organization office. Mats is also editor of Rapport-Nytt, the UFO-Sweden magazine for members and field investigators. As usual he delivered a box with the latest issue of Rapport-Nytt for the archive. Mats Nilsson is one of the few Swedish ufologists who has written his memoirs, which we hope to publish soon. A fascinating exposé of his many years in the underground world of ufology.

Mats Nilsson

Latest issue of Rapport-Nytt

Yesterday, Friday 12, I met up at AFU with religious scholar Erik Östling, from the University of Stockholm. He is here for a two day visit searching for data on Swedish contactee Sten Lindgren. As I have for several years investigated and documented the case of Sten Lindgren and his organization Intergalaktiska Federationen - IGF - (The Intergalactical Federation) I provided my files for Erik to scan at AFU. The result will probably be an article in some scholarly journal on history of religions.

Erik Östling

Swedish contactee Sten Lindgren

Between 15-20 people are working daily at AFU. One of our large and time consuming projects is scanning the enormous clippings files from Charles Fort Institute (CFI). So far 62,000+ clippings have been scanned. Bob Rickard of CFI has named us "heroic librarians", but I think the person best deserving this homage is my old friend and AFU collegue Anders Liljegren. Despite retiring from his work last year he is now working more than full time on a volunteer basis at AFU, taking care of economy and our large staff, besides doing a lot of the cataloguing of books and magazines. Anders is the rock of AFU and without his efforts we could never have developed to the largest UFO/Fortean archive in the world. That is what I call heroic idealism.

Anders Liljegren

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Rudolf von Linauer and a Tibetan mystery

During a recent visit to the Swedish seaport Karlskrona, Susanne and I enjoyed the sunshine but also, as usual, tried to find the local antiquarian bookshops. And we were lucky as, in spite of summertime, Lyckeby antikvariat was open. We spent more than an hour perusing the shelves and found several interesting volumes. I bought a nicely illustrated book on Tibetan art by L. Jisl, V. Sis and J. Vanis. The Swedish edition, Tibetansk konst, was published in 1958.

A bookworm outside the antiquarian bookshop in Karlskrona

The last couple of weeks I have spent some time trying to find more data on a Tibetan mystery. In his book Försvunnen teknik (Lost engineering) (1961) author and aircraft engineer Henry Kjelsson (1891-1962) mention the Swedish physician "Jarl" who claims to have taken a film i Tibet showing monks lifting heavy blocks of stone with the help of sound waves. Clas Svahn checked this story and interviewed the widow of Jarl and according to her and other sources her husband had a very lively imagination and was something of a mythmaker. So there are grave doubts about this story.

But Henry Kjelsson also, in his book, mentions another man with similar claims, Dr. Rudolf von Linauer, whom he met at Linauer´s lecture at The International Club in Stockholm, September 1939. According to Kjelsson Linauer had, while working for Metro-Goldwyn in China, been accepted into a secret society and as a result of these contacts could visit Tibet. There he was allowed to view Tibetan monks lifting giant blocks of stone using sound waves from various instruments.

Rudolf von Linauer (bad reproduction)

As there are serious doubts about the authenticity of the story given by Jarl I decided to do some research on Rudolf von Linauer. A search on the internet revealed surprisingly few details. He is the author of Solens rike, a book about the spiritual message in Chinese art, published in Sweden 1939. According to bibliographical information in the Swedish catalogue Libris this is a translation from German (Das Reich der Sonne) but I have found no data on this book. My copy of the Swedish edition is autographed by Linauer and translated in Swedish by Mrs Elsbeth Funch, author and globetrotter. During Linauer´s visit to Sweden in 1939 he visited the home of Mrs Funch to study her collections of Chinese art.

An internet search reveals that Linauer wrote a short manuscript included in My Life in Germany Before and After January 30, 1933. This manuscript is preserved at the Manuscript Collection at Houghton Library, Harvard University. These biographical data are presented:
"Linauer, Rudolf von; 33, b: Trieste; Catholic, divorced; architect; last German residence: Berlin, 1940; Tystberga/Sweden.
A widely travelled architect, the author expresses his astonishment and disgust towards the Nazi movement after returning to Germany in 1934-1935. In a loosely structured, impressionistic manuscript entitled "Inquisition Berlin Alexanderplatz", he describes the process of Nazi takeover and how people around him make their peace with the new regime. Most of the manuscript is taken up with his description of his sudden arrest and incarceration in a concentration camp... 48 pp. typescript".

In Ancestry I found that Rudolf von Linauer moved to California in 1956 and changed his name to Roy Rulin. But this is all I have been able to find on the internet so I wrote to several of the largest archives and libraries in Germany, Austria, including Trieste but very few of these institutions found any data on Linauer, which is quite surprising as they searched in databases, reference- and biographical books. I did receive some new data though from Biblioteca Civica Attilio Hortis in Trieste: "Rudolf von Linauer was born in Trieste, November 2, 1907 and was the illegitimate son of Guiseppina von Linauer (daughter of Teresa) who lived in Trieste in via G. Gozzi 3. Rudolf was baptized in the month of January 1908 in the church of St. Antonio Taumaturgo."

But the most interesting information regarding Linauer´s experiences in Tibet was found in an article he wrote for the Swedish daily Stockholms-Tidningen, September 17, 1939. I ordered a copy of this article from the National Library of Sweden. It was printed in the Sunday supplement and well illustrated. This article is probably a written version of his lecture at The International Club in Stockholm. Here is a very short summary of his Tibetan adventure.

During his travels in Tibet he met two monks who brought him to a remote monastery where are preserved secret and sacred scripts engraved on blue metal, halv a million years old and also metals and instruments unknown to man. Linauer claims to have brought a piece of one metal to a laboratory in England and they could not identify it. He also witnessed a large gong 13 meters in diameter. For several hundred years this monastery has only been visited by eight foreigners. The monks are preparing a mission to present the ancient wisdom to the world. A philosophy (religion) "without fanaticism, hierachy and ignorance".

During his stay Linauer is allowed to follow the monks to another monastery where he spends nine month of study. It is at this place he becomes a witness to the lifting of heavy stones with the help of sound. One day monks are stationed around the monastery to keep all strangers away. Large metal shields are placed in a certain geometrical position together with a gong of three meters in diameter, made of three different metals. Monks are nude with only shields of metal on their bodies. They strike the gong which gives a thunderous sound. The monks can now carry large blocks of stone as if they were made a paper and build the new structure very easily. Linauer tries this himself and is surprised to be able to lift a massive stone without effort.  After about three hours two hundred stones have been set in place. Linauer gets a headache and palpitation of the sound and some of the monks must be carried to rest because of the deep concentration involved in the work.

This is what I have been able to document regarding the fascinating experiences of Rudolf von Linauer. Whether his story is true or fiction is an open question. Hopefully more data can be discovered by others involved in similar types of research.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Minigolf and UFO reports

We were thirteen participants today at annual AFU minigolf contest, named the Åke Franzén Memorial Cup, in memory of our old friend and ufologist Åke Franzén (1936-1995). He used to visit us every summer in Norrköping and we always had a great time together. Åke was an enthusiast of everything involving UFOs and fortean topics.

Åke Franzén

Todays game started very well for me but in the end I was defeated by AFU archivist Sven-Olov Svensson. Here are todays results: Sven-Olov (44), Håkan (47), Roland (48), Tobias (49), Richard (49), Rolf (51), Benny (53), Mikael (55), Katarina (9), Bengtsson (65), Ingrid (69), Peter (75), Anders (76). After the contest we all enjoyed coffee and waffles.

Tobias and Sven-Olov preparing for the game

Tobias in action

Katarina in deep concentration

The AFU gang after the game

Recently UFO-Sweden received an interesting UFO report involving a horseshoe-shaped object observed in the autumn of 1957. Today close encounter cases are very rare and we have often speculated on the reason for the scarcity of such sorts reports in modern times. The observation in 1957 involved seven or eight witnesses. The were standing in the harbour of Varberg, a city on the Swedish westcoast. Time around 5 P.M. A bright object appears over the sea and comes slowly gliding towards the witnesses. It is shaped like a horseshoe with regular areas of green light and emits a crackling sound, like a badly tuned radio. Suddenly there is a burst of fire from the object and it disappears very fast up in the sky. No one could have survived that g-force, according to the witness, who contacted UFO-Sweden. 

Varberg 1957, drawing by witness

There have not been many horseshoe-shaped objects observered in Sweden. I checked our database and found only one or two that fit this description. There is no exact date but the observation took place one evening in 1985. A mother and her son are sitting in the kitchen of their house outside the city of Borås. Suddenly the room starts vibrating, the lamp above the kitchen table is swinging. The mother says that perhaps it is a small earthquake. Soon their is also heard humming sound and the witnesses leave the house to find a large horseshoe-shaped object slowly passing just above the treetops, not more than 25-30 meters above ground. The object is surrounded by a faint "fog" and has a "window" in the front emitting a white light. A soft red light is also noticed in several places on the object. I slowly glides out of sight.

Borås 1985, drawing by witness

Although one of the witnesses have filled in a report form there is no follow up on this case. In the AFU archives we have hundreds of very interesting close encounter cases like this one that are just waiting to be thoroughly investigated, analysed and documented. But very few of the UFO-Sweden field investigators take any notice of this vast source of data. Instead a lot of time is wasted on totally irrelevant lights in the sky, Chinese lanterns and obvious misidentifications in photographs. I hope more field investigators will go back to basics and start investigating the real UFO reports.