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Abduction: Human Encounters With Aliens Paperback – Large Print, November, 1994

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Paperback, Large Print, November, 1994
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Mack's credentials are impressive; he's a Pulitzer Prize winner and professor of psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School's Cambridge Hospital. He has investigated 76 UFO abduction cases over the past four years and here summarizes 13 of them, also offering his scholarly comments and controversial conclusions. These narratives involve scenarios that are sexually explicit, terrifyingly gruesome, and mind-numbingly chilling in their implications for the nature of reality. The individuals Mack portrays have experienced deeply traumatic events that have transformed their lives--for the worse at first, but ultimately for the better. According to Mack, the aliens are objectively real and seem to be abducting people for two purposes: (1) changing human consciousness to prevent the destruction of Earth's ecosystems and (2) creating offsping from aliens and humans. What sets Mack's book apart is his willingness to deal with some of his clients' assertions that they themselves are half-human and half-alien, at least psychologically or spiritually; his acceptance that the laws of physics can be broken (many abductees claim that the aliens can "float" them through solid objects such as doors and closed windows); his seemingly routine procedure to hypnotically regress abductees into previous incarnations; and his emphasis on spiritual transformation as the nexus of the abduction (even likening it to a shamanic expansion of consciousness). How much you agree with all this may depend on where you're coming from to begin with. Nonetheless, Mack has shown the psychiatric community that the UFO abduction syndrome is a real problem that deserves serious clinical attention. George Eberhart --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Kirkus Reviews

Mack (Psychiatry/Harvard Med.) won a Pulitzer Prize for his life of T.E. Lawrence (A Prince of Our Disorder, 1976); more recently he teamed with Rita S. Rogers for the superb The Alchemy of Survival (1988). Here he tackles a subject that pushes the very boundaries of rational discourse: the case histories of patients who claim to have been abducted by aliens. Mack has been working with abduction ``experiencers'' since early in 1990 and has interviewed over 100 people of various ages and backgrounds, most of whom show no obvious signs of mental illness. The bulk of the book consists of the narratives of 13 subjects told in almost stupefying detail. Their stories have many features in common: the physical descriptions of the aliens (most frequently, short, gray beings with pear-shaped heads and large, dark eyes); intrusive quasi-medical procedures aboard alien ships; and the ``message'' that the aliens are deeply concerned about the future of the Earth. These people are, quite understandably, deeply unsettled by their abductions and often come to Mack for assurance that there is some rational explanation for what has happened to them. Unfortunately, Mack cannot offer them anything beyond assurance that their situation is not unique. He recognizes that, if taken at face value, these accounts call into question basic premises of Western science. Yet as a psychiatrist, he has little choice but to accept that their stories reflect some kind of psychological reality, arguing that strict rationalism needs to make room for his patients' experiences. Abduction leaves the reader with very little solid ground to stand on. In the end, despite Mack's impressive credentials and his sophisticated interpretation of the abduction phenomenon, he leaves a reader still reluctant to discard several centuries of accumulated knowledge in order to accomodate a persuasive psychological--if not an objective--truth. (8 pages of photos-- not seen) -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 683 pages
  • Publisher: Wheeler Publishing (November 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568950829
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568950822
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.6 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,260,584 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Scott Snyder on May 30, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Dr. John Mack is a serious, careful and courageous research. Consider. If you were a Harvard Medical School professor with a Pulitzer prize and a sterling reputation would you endanger it for the sensationalism of "alien" abduction? Even if you were confronted with evidence of strange events, why put up with all the headaches? That Mack did proves him to be a true man of science, one who investigates phenomena instead of prejudging it as valid or not valid.
Mack is not saying outright that alien abductions are "real." He is saying that something is happening that leaves a real and lasting effect on people. These events have certain characteristics in common. Mack is mapping the terrain features of a new psychological continent using the case histories of individuals who have come forward. These individuals are also taking serious risks.
In truth the issue is not alien abduction per se, but what Mack calls the politics of ontology.
Personally I have had more than my share of "interesting" events. Mack's book, though not overtly written for this purpose, is a guide by which those who quietly keep to themselves may evaluate how their experience compares with others.
If you are interested in a serious exploration of this topic, this is the best book on the subject.
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful By The Don Wood Files on January 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
You do not need to be convinced by Mack in order to admire his courage: as a Harvard Professor, to take a topic straight from the tabloids and treat it seriously deserves a four-star rating by itself. I am generally open to new ways of perceiving reality, and am willing to ponder the idea that "aliens" (or fellow -earth dwellers, differently dimensioned) are playing tricks with us. My main difficulty lies with using hypnosis as a tool to uncover hidden memories, which lies at the heart of Mack's approach. Hypnosis is just too easy to abuse. It may be the only tool we can think of, currently, to use in this quest, but it just has too many drawbacks to be taken as the sole tool for alien-style research. I think Mack, too, would agree with that.
The 1990s, when this book came out, were a heady time for alien research. Many books on the subject were published, and TVs shows produced. Maybe it was the upcoming millennium, or just an increase in alien visits in the late 80s, but the field was hot. Now, it has cooled off a bit. One wonders when the next alien wave, or `flap,' will hit. But hit it will, and when it does, many will go back to Mack's book for insight. This is recommended, along with Jaques Valle's books.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 5, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a contactee myself, I found the nature of the information assimilated by the abductees in Dr. Mack's book to be consistent with my own personal experience. Though each individual filters information through their own sphere of reference, Dr. Mack concludes that the experience of the abductees ultimately changes their world view, expands their environmental consciousness, and adjusts, positively, our basic egocentric view that we humans are the only species important enough to remain on our planet. I personally have found this expansion of consciousness into an empathy for all forms of life to be true and consider it to be the primary reason for contact. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone interested in contact, abduction or shamanic experience. The stories told by the abductees are as fascinating as they are unique to each individual. I felt a sense of anticipation with each page I turned, not wanting to stop reading until I had read the experiences of each abductee and wishing there were many more such accounts included before this exciting read ended.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By on June 8, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read the whole book and it really grabbed my attention. It made me worry that I would be abducted by aliens. I remember being scared after reading it late one night, thinking at any moment, an alien creature would walk through the window and abduct me. I do not frighten easily, but this book made me keep a night light on for a couple of weeks. It is a great piece of work on a world wide phenomenon. Read it with an open mind. Can hundreds of thousands of people around the world all be crazy? I think personally that we have been visited by EBE's throughout all of Earth's history and that we are a product of their creation. They are abducting so many of us to create human-alien hybrids that will colonize the Earth after a lot of us die off from an upcoming global disaster of some kind. Get this book now and be afraid, be very afraid.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By "aris_" on January 2, 2002
Format: Audio Cassette
The author has his feet on the solid ground on what he wrote. Facts are exposed. Conclusions remain open. He has the caution not to believe literally on every aspect obtained by the investigation, subjective but very significant nevertheless alternative explanations are suggested, remaining to the reader the final opinion. The author is a professional senior psychiatrist teacher. The main method of revealing facts here in this book is back-regression by hypnosis, to the time of the events, with the professional know-how not to induce, but to open individuals forgotten experiences. What for me states the quality of this work, and book, is it was done always with the goal of making the life of the persons studied a better one, not just to extract them material for a book or project. The quest to reveal and to solve the inner live problems of the people involved, and then to inform there is something REAL in the alien abduction subject. The book may deep influence some people lives, if the reader get confronted with similarities with one self or close people cases; 5 star indeed.
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