Conspiracy Theoryology

Conspiracy Theoryology

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Conspiracy Theoryology focuses on why some alternative theories and beliefs capture popular imagination and work themselves into the public consciousness. Often times it's just a matter of good timing, the "right place, right time" scenario. Other times it seems all too convenient, and the popularity only strengthens the skeptics while deepening the suspicions for the proponents all the more. The conspiracies are summarized, with the most well-known version and details discussed. Then we dive into historical events, contemporary social occurrences, and even layman explorations into psychology and sociology as an explanation for the widespread appeal. There are so many conspiracy theories, urban legends, paranormal beliefs, popular rumors, and mythical lore, that we often take for granted that we know what they are really about. Once you gain a fresh perspective, you may just find yourself taking a new look at old stories.

Podcast Episodes

  • Do Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence?
    November 26th, 2019

    Episode 40

    We have all heard the adage, “Extraordinary Claims require Extraordinary Evidence.” Have you asked yourself, “what does that even mean?” Chances are, when you’ve heard it, or even used it, it has been in relation to a topic that you already feel confident is all but impossible to prove anyway. But where did it come from, and why has it become the go-to gotcha phrase for calling someone’s bluff , especially in regarding to conspiracy theory and the paranormal or supernatural? Come to think of it, how do we know when it applies? What exactly makes a claim “extraordinary”?

    To do this, I think we need to first understand the phrase itself. Where it comes from, and what it is actually saying. After that, we can explore other aspects of popular thinking which make this resonate so well with the general public.

    Now, I’ve been wanting to talk about this for a long time. Exploring cases and beliefs often leads to the inevitable discussion board with the oft repeated phrases “prove it” and “that’s proven false”. I realized that I couldn’t simply pick a single example or event and boil it down to that. We needed to discuss the axiom itself. That “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” is often taken as a conclusion to the discussion itself. As though it states a given truth about a claim, establishing it’s impossibility. At least impossibility in so far as the claimants ability to prove anything.

     

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    Links:

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-scientific-fundamentalist/201103/do-extraordinary-claims-require-extraordinary-evidence

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre-Simon_Laplace

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/hot-thought/201303/what-is-evidence?amp

    https://www.patheos.com/blogs/notesfromanapostate/2015/04/do-extraordinary-claims-require-extraordinary-evidence/

    https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/scientists-are-searching-mirror-universe-it-could-be-sitting-right-ncna1023206

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2019/07/16/you-must-not-trust-experiments-that-claim-the-existence-of-parallel-universes/#2b86060f2fbe

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/11/22/scientific-proof-is-a-myth/#59b71ce92fb1

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3114207/

  • Haunted Houses and Prospect-Refuge Theory
    October 31st, 2019

    Episode 39

    Haunted houses have a long and storied history. One of the earliest stories which we have originates in Ancient Rome. Pliny the Younger writing in the first century, recounts in a letter the story of the philosopher Athenodorus and his brush with a haunted house. Per the story, Athenodorus arrives in Athens and picks up a villa with a very reasonable rent, largely due to it’s haunted reputation. On his first night in the home, the philosopher is confronted by the ghost of an old man bound with chains. The apparition leads Athenodorus to the courtyard, at which point, he vanishes. The following day Athenodorus has that location excavated, resulting in the discovery of a skeleton. These remains are then given a proper burial and the ghost never appeared again. 

    Tales of this nature have permeated throughout centuries of media and entertainment, filling our literature, cinemas, theater stages and televisions with ghostly tales of haunted residences. I could spend the entire episode simply listing all the epic poetry, tombs of short stories, prose and novels, and the catalog of movies, radio shows, television series and now even social media content, that encompasses the topic. We won’t, simply out of practicality, and I would assume that you already have your never-fail-go-to haunted house story favorites of books and movies. 

    More than any other haunted location the haunted house resonates. Today ghost stories and paranormal investigations are replete with tales of haunted houses and residing spirits that run the gamut from past residents, and lingering family members, to frightening entities and residual haunting that act as living memories of the home, or the land on which it sits. 

    The haunted house is now such a part of our culture that we have turned them into attractions, even going so far as to build them and recreate the spooky experience with special effects and actors. And in truth, we can’t bring up the concept of the haunted house, without exploring this most visible manifestation of our infatuation with the spirit laden domicile.

    Skeptics are quick to claim reasonable explanations for the phenomenon, crediting the power of suggestion and confirmation bias. The physical effects of toxic exposure to carbon monoxide, pesticides and formaldehyde are also used to justify the haunting experiences as hallucinations.

    These perfectly rational and mundane explanations are so common that any respectable paranormal investigation team called into a home by the concerned owners will first exhaust these influential possibilities as an explanation before even considering the paranormal option. If you’ve ever wondered why so many investigators use devices that seem best suited for use by electricians, plumbers and home inspectors, now you know. 

    This skeptical view certainly does provide evidence for why we might find a location haunted, and why the label of “haunted” can come to be attributed to otherwise average homes of any given time period. I think it appropriate to emphasize this, as I had made it clear earlier that I come to this topic with a definite bias. It is true that haunting can be explained, and I do make sure when approaching a story of experience with a checklist of physical world possibilities. Yet, these explanations don’t answer every situation, and they certainly do not explain why we find the haunted house so fascinating and why they have pervaded our imaginations for so long.

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    Links:

    https://theconversation.com/amp/evolutionary-psychology-explains-why-haunted-houses-creep-us-out-48209

    https://time.com/5433554/haunted-houses-fear-brain/?amp=true

    https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/history-haunted-house-180957008/

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/out-the-ooze/201511/what-makes-house-feel-haunted

    https://www.thevintagenews.com/2017/02/10/the-earliest-known-story-about-a-haunted-house-tells-of-the-encounters-of-the-greek-philosopher-athenodorus-in-a-haunted-villa-he-rents-in-athens/

    https://psychcentral.com/blog/the-psychology-behind-instilling-a-sense-of-home/

    https://medium.com/@social_archi/prospect-refuge-theory-ca5d80379e51

     

  • Seeking Witchcraft (w/ guest Ashley of Seeking Witchcraft Podcast)
    October 18th, 2019

    Episode 38

    Witchcraft intrigues us and captures our imagination. The concept is steeped in history, and the practice is shrouded in magick and the mystical. Even so, many have no idea how this ancient practice has translated into the modern day. In fact, most don't even realize that it exists in modern day, and that witches are in their midst within everyday life. Witchcraft, through all it's incarnations in our pop culture, is explored through stories. Movies, television, books and other media all use witches are often used as character reflections for ourselves, and our desire to influence and control the chaos around us. Ultimate it's left to personal interpretation and impact. Still, as much as we surround ourselves with the imagery, most of us have little, if any, understanding of the witches that live next door. You probably don't even realize they do, because they do not fit the mold of expectation. 

    But modern witches are just modern people. They grew up in regular households. They face daily challenges. They have degrees in Psychology and deal with a commute to work, and find time to get their cats to the veterinarian....and that is exactly who our guest is on this episode.

    This time I am joined by a Wiccan Priestess named Ashley, who also hosts the amazing podcast "Seeking Witchcraft". Ashley has joined this discussion to introduce us to the modern concepts of witchcraft and the Wiccan religion, and share with us a bit of her story that began this journey of exploration and adherence to a modern "pagan" religion that is born of ancient beliefs and understanding. 

    This is not our usual research driven episode. It's a story. Witchcraft is a personal journey for it's practitioners. Even when covens are formed such as those of the various Wiccan traditions, initiates are guided by the experienced members and encouraged to explore their own understandings. On Seeking Witchcraft, Ashley takes her listeners through her personal understandings of Wicca and witchcraft, introducing tools, concepts, rituals and practices that she has found beneficial and effective, while also not being afraid to bring in guests to explore topics that she is still exploring as well. 

    Links:

    https://anchor.fm/seekingwitchcraft

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  • Mass Hallucination (w/ guest Jason Charbonneau)
    October 3rd, 2019

    Episode 37

    Spoiler alert. Mass Hallucination is not a real phenomenon. It does not exist. At least not as depicted in popular media. Regardless, it’s a term bantered about by both sides in many skeptical debates. Today we’re going to break down the mass hallucination theory and find out why it often surfaces as the go-to excuse for the unexplained.

    This time I am joined by guest host, Jason Charbonneau, creator of the fascinating YouTube channel, Think Anomalous. As you will see, I reached out to Jason for very good reason, I think you will very much enjoy.

    Links:

    http://www.thinkanomalous.com/myth-of-mass-hallucinations.html

    https://link.springer.com/article/10.3758/s13423-016-1127-1

    https://www.compellingtruth.org/hallucination-theory.html

    https://www.emmys.com/bios/jason-charbonneau

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Strauss

    http://www.process.org/discept/2012/07/12/mass-hallucination-hysteria-miracles/

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  • Flying Tic Tacs, UFO and Paradigm Shifts
    September 24th, 2019

    Episode 36

    This time Ryan jumps on the microphone for a bit of off-the-cuff discussion regarding the hot UFO topic of US Navy admission that the released "tic-tac" videos, which surfaced in 2017, are legitimate footage of unidentified aerial phenomenon captured between 2004 and 2015. Additionally, they were never meant to be released to the public. 

    Of course, we cannot just discuss these videos for what they show, or even the story behind them. No, Theoryologists, we explore what they mean. Big picture what they mean! They are a catalyst. A moment of crisis. A beginning to a major paradigm shift. Of course that means diving into an understanding of paradigms and how this little video sensation could possibly signal a huge shift in thinking.

    Links:

    https://www.thoughtco.com/what-is-a-paradigm-shift-2670671

    https://apolitical.co/solution_article/paradigm-shift-social-change/

    https://www.thwink.org/sustain/glossary/ParadigmChange.htm

    https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/28305/carrier-group-in-recent-ufo-encounters-had-new-air-defense-tech-just-like-nimitz-in-2004-incident

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/ufo-videos-are-footage-of-real-unidentified-objects-us-navy-acknowledges/ar-AAHra1w

    http://www.expandedperspectives.com/category/podcast/

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8CdAj1rveMTjR72_LdDBpQ/videos

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  • Theoryology Bites: Last Thursdayism & Listener Updates
    September 19th, 2019

    Episode 35: Theoryology Bites

    Time for a short Bonus Episode! Theoryology Bites is a bit of a side show idea to cover things that simply don't have any theoryology behind them. These are ideas, beliefs, and even conspiracy theories that didn't gain any traction in the public imagination....usually for good reason.

    Still, they are fun to talk about and this gives y'all a chance to hear about them without trying to create an episode that created a theoryology that wasn't there. Hopefully you find it entertaining.

    Also, Ryan takes the time to update listeners with updates on the show, explain what it upcoming, and announce the arrival of the Conspiracy Theoryology merchandise store!!!!!

    Links:

    Last Thursdayism - http://www.last-thursday.org/

    Conspiracy Theoryology Store - https://www.zazzle.com/store/theoryologypod

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  • Peak Oil, Twinkies and the Scarcity Principle
    September 3rd, 2019

    Episode 34

    Welcome back Theoryologists! We are talking about the theory of Peak Oil.

    The Peak Oil theory has a long history, that, while coined in 1950’s, is rooted in studies and predictions going back to the late 19th century, and in short proposes that oil, as a limited and exhaustible resource, will reach a point of peak discovery, production and availability at some point. In other words, we will eventually figure out where all of it is hiding within the Earth’s crust, and when there is no more new oil to be found, eventually the curve for the amount we are pumping out will take a turn as well and it follows that it’s all diminishing returns from that point onward.

    We are going to explore it’s history, at least in brief, along with it’s impact on how we think of oil as a commodity. We can also look into contrasting viewpoints, and new priorities that may deserve better focus in  modern day. At the end of the day, the goal is to have introduced you the real reason that the Peak Oil Theory had such an impact on the public imagination (and continues to even today). That of the Scarcity Principle. More pointedly, it seems like the scarcity principle results in outcomes for oil that you wouldn’t expect, nor would it benefit everyone using it as a marketing tactic for their particular issue. 

    Oh yeah, and to do all that, we are going to talk about Twinkies! 

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  • The Story Keepers (w/ guest NK Kranda)
    August 22nd, 2019

    Episode 33

    "Honor yourself because you survived." - NK Kranda

    These words encapsulate a unique and welcomed approach for those that have experienced the unexplained and inexplicable. And, it exemplifies the empathetic and generous nature of our guest today. On this episode of Conspiracy Theoryology, The Story Keepers. Joined by experience preservationist NK Kranda, as well as Travis, a personal experiencer with his own story to share, we explore the growing field of Experiencer Research, and discuss the power of stories, the impact of sharing personal experience, and the unique approach to engaging with individuals that have amazing and often hard to believe stories. Ultimately, this discussion should remind us all that there are very real and ordinary people behind these extraordinary experiences.

    Language warning for those that are used to the regular shows.

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    Links:

    NK Kranda - Facebook

    Strange Word - Travel Channel

    Hysteria 51 Podcast - NK Kranda Interview

    Somewhere in the Skies - NK Kranda Interview

  • The Curse of the Petrified Forest
    August 6th, 2019

    Episode 32

    This episode we explore our fascination with the Petrified Forest, located in Arizona. Specifically we will discuss the curse that has been associated with this amazing National Park, and reported by visitors since the 1930s. I say reports, but they are really attempts to lift this curse by returning stolen pieces of petrified wood, often with letters explaining the streak of misfortune and bad luck that had been wrought upon them following their larcenous indiscretions. Now, it may seem like we will be exploring the history of curses and legends, but that is actually not the most fascinating part of this particular story. See, what it more interesting is the realization that this particular tale of woe befalling the naive and curious sightseer and thrill seeker takes on mythological proportions of tragedy and warning.

    Inspired by some fellow podcasters over at the “It’s Real I Swear” podcast, we will introduce ourselves to the Curse of the Petrified Forest, and find out why it just may be a lesson on par with Greek mythology.

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    Links:

    https://badluckhotrocks.com/

    https://www.legendsofamerica.com/az-petrifiedcurse/

    https://www.thoughtco.com/what-was-pandoras-box-118577

    https://www.latimes.com/books/jacketcopy/la-et-jc-conscience-letters-of-the-petrified-forest-20141203-story.html

  • Jade Helm 15 and the Secret PsyOp (Part 3)
    July 23rd, 2019

    Episode 31

    Welcome back, Theoryologists. We are wrapping up our discussion of Jade Helm 15 and addressing our suspicions that is was, at the very least, used as a convenient opportunity for psychological operations training. Conversely, and more likely, the social manipulation and psychological triggers introduced with the Jade Helm operation were intrinsic of the training exercise itself, intended all along within the planning of this operation.

    In part 1 of this series, I introduced you Jade Helm 15, a joint military training exercise that was helmed by the US Special Operations Command, along with subordinate SOCOMs, and executed simultaneously in multiple US states in the southwest. We experienced the months leading to the July 2015 start of the operation through the concern and public backlash witnessed in the central Texas town of Bastrop. Remember what we discovered? We found out that with the actual start of operations, the high adventure, information leaks and media frenzy all came to an abrupt and anticlimactic halt. It seems that the only story worth telling is the story before Jade Helm ever began. That is, unless Jade Helm 15, at least some part of it, started much earlier than the much publicized date of mid-July.

    This time we attempt to pull all the information together. Now that we have re-familiarized ourselves with the event so of Jade Helm 15, and learned a good deal of the history and execution of PSYOP strategy and the Special Operations Command, it's time to figure out exactly what made Jade Helm so controversial, and why the public suspicion grew exponentially in the days preceding the training exercise.

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    Links:

    http://nsiteam.com/social/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/SOF-OHD-Concept-V1.0-3-Aug-15.pdf

    https://www.270towin.com/2012_Election/

     

  • Jade Helm 15 and the Secret PsyOp (Part 2)
    July 11th, 2019

    Episode 30

    To some, it produces images of government controlled communications/mass media, telling the people only what the government wants them to hear. To others, it raises the horrid specter of Joseph Goebbels, Hitler’s Propaganda Minister, practicing the technique of the "big lie" which has incorrectly become synonymous with "propaganda". Still to others, the mere mention of "psychological" operations or warfare invokes visions of "mind control" through some mysterious means of brainwashing.

    It should be clear that modern psychological operations, or PSYOP, is none of those things. - Maj. Ed Rouse (retired)

    Welcome back, Theoryologists. With this episode we continue our discussion of Jade Helm 15, by introducing ourselves to the world of Psychological Operations, and gain an understanding of the structure of Special Operations Command within the military. There was really no way of discussing PSYOPS without turning the discussion into a history lesson in psychological operations and warfare, as well as a review the evolving strategy within the US military. We glossed over the full industry of PSYOPS and special operations in the first episode, so this time we are giving full review. I wanted to really understand this beyond a simple wikipedia entry, so I went right to the source. In doing so, I found excellent information that provided the history, strategy, and future direction for psychological operations.

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    Links:

    http://www.psywarrior.com/psyhist.html

    http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/au/goldstein/goldstein_b18.pdf

    https://www.usapova.com/welcome-to-pova

  • Jade Helm 15 and the Secret PsyOp (Part 1)
    June 25th, 2019

    Episode 29

    Welcome back, Theoryologists. When you hear the term “psyop”, in context of the military, what comes to mind? Does it conjure up thoughts of leaflet air drops? Radio broadcasts behind enemy lines? Loudspeaker announcements? Are you even familiar with the term at all? While for some it may conjure the thought of clandestine psychic warfare and espionage tactics, Psyop is, in fact, an abbreviation of the term “psychological operation”. 

    These operations are defined by the Department of Defense as “planned psychological activities in peace and war which normally pursue objectives to gain the support and cooperation of friendly and neutral countries and to reduce the will and the capacity of hostile or potentially hostile countries to wage war.”

    Psyops have been employed by the US military in some form since the American revolution, and examples of these strategic psychological activities can be found during every major US military conflict since. This includes the American Civil War, Vietnam, and more recently the military conflicts in the Middle East. In fact, psychological operations are utilized by all major militaries throughout the world. While tactics employed, as mentioned before, such as leaflets and propaganda driven radio broadcasts are more properly defined as aspects of psychological warfare, the US Military is quick to point out that psychological operations during peacetime take a very different tact. These psyops do not involve misinformation, but are designed, in fact, to deter conflict through well crafted, truth based persuasive communications and terminology.

    We will begin our story, and learn about the military training exercise known as Jade Helm 15 through it’s impact on a small town in central Texas.  This will be a two part episode, simply because there is just so much to explore. Today we will introduce ourselves to this training exercise through the lens the residents in the town of Bastrop. As you hear the story and follow the events as they play out, keep the concept of psyops in the back of your mind.

    In May 2018, news outlets and newspaper articles circulated an update to the 2015 joint operation training exercise known as Jade Helm. Outlets reported on an MSNBC interview with, Michael Hayden, who had served as former head of both the CIA and NSA, during which Hayden made comments indicating that the frenzy of public concern and media coverage was fueled by a Russian disinformation campaign. This, of course, settled the issue and ended any further media interest for the 3 year old topic. Seemingly providing explanation for the escalated alarm, claims of conspiracy theory, and public backlash, Hayden rested the blame on Russian bots and the alt-right media, answering the question of how the whole conspiracy theory got started in the first place. 

    The problem is, it was never a question anyone was asking. Not during media coverage leading up to the exercise in 2015, and certainly not in 2018, long after most people forgot that anything had ever happened. So if no one was asking the question, then why provide an unprompted answer? Well, we could point some motivation to the fact that Michael Hayden was promoting his book during the interview, but it still seems a bit random. That is, unless this latest revelation of information is just another phase of the Jade Helm exercise itself. To make a determination like that, though, we should first understand what exactly happened in the months leading up to the Jade Helm training exercise during the Spring of 2015

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  • Ancient Aliens And Instinctive Elaboration
    June 14th, 2019

    Episode 28

    Welcome back Theoryologists. What happens when your brain hears a question? In fact, the answer is just what happened when you heard my question. Interestingly, you focused in and everything else, at least for a moment, was put to the side while your mind attempted to address the question at hand.

    Neuroscience research has found that the human brain can only think of one thing at a time. According to the book Brain Rules, “we are biologically incapable of processing attention-rich inputs simultaneously.” Questions trigger a mental reflex known as “instinctive elaboration”. In which, when a question is posed, it takes over the brain’s thought process. And when your brain is thinking about the answer to a question, it cannot contemplate anything else. Behavioral scientists have also found that just asking people about their future decisions significantly influences those decisions, a phenomenon known as the “mere measurement effect.”

    This time I am again joined by Mike on co-host duty as we continue our discussion on the Ancient Aliens phenomen; focusing specifically on the ancient aliens television series. The series, which began formally in 2010, and appears in the History Channel, just began its 14th season and continues to prove wildly popular and successful, pulling in over a million viewers weekly on a regular basis. As we jump into the discussion, think about the aspects of the show that we highlight as possible drivers for the success and popularity with the public. What you will find is that the series is designed, very intentionally, to focus your attention and peak your interest by proposing the varied theories as questions. These questions guide the viewers in digesting the ideas presented, and actually increase the likelihood that they will accept the possibility, and find the show more engaging.

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    Links:

    https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/decisionsciences/newsn/5051/want-to-know-what-your-brain-does-when-it-hears-a-question

     

  • Ancient Aliens and Big History (Part 2)
    May 28th, 2019

    Episode 27

    Continuing the discussion of Ancient Astronaut Theory, this time we explore another approach to understanding history, known as Big History. This educational approach to the exploration of history is much more than a timeline of human history, or even of Earth history. Big History goes all the way back to the Big Bang as a starting point, and presents a timeline, in a narrative form, leading all the way to the modern era. It doesn't stop there, using this big picture approach to draw a conclusion that we, as a species, have a tremendous responsibility and influence in ensuring that history continues into the future. 

    Led by historian, Dave Christian, a growing group of scholars and educators are encouraging a shift in how we think about history. Emphasizing that modern human history did not emerge out of nowhere, but rather at a particular time and place, in specific historical context. Through compelling argument, they present a big picture view and a unifying concept of the human condition.

    As we explore the theoryology behind our fascination with Ancient Astronaut Theory, we come to understand that both it and Big History are focused not in just presenting "facts" as they are understood with each approach. More importantly, they are endeavoring to provide an origin story. Origin stories have been constructed since the beginnings of human civilization, through mythologies, religious beliefs, early explorations into experimental and observational studies, and currently into the modern realm of scientific exploration and experimentation. 

    We understand the past to be our origins, and we understand ourselves through these ancient origin stories. They were central to education in the ancient world, giving shape and meaning to knowledge. This broad approach to understanding and learning, though, had been lost in the modern world, and instead replaced with fragmented, compartmentalized studies that are discipline specific. The narrative has been lost, with the focus so much of the "what" and the "when" of history, that we don't even ask "why?".

    Big History is out to change that, taking standard accepted science and history, across multiple disciplines, to make history "big" again. It appeals to our desire for origin stories. This is the same appeal found in the Ancient Astronaut hypothesis. 

    Joined again by guest co-host Mike Nelson, we tackle Big History and draw conclusions about Ancient Astronaut Theory that hopefully provides a bit more understanding of its pervasive influence to the public.

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

    Links:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_History

    https://blog.bighistoryproject.com/2017/08/22/the-power-of-origin-stories-in-big-history/

    https://theconversation.com/big-history-why-we-need-to-teach-the-modern-origin-story-10405

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/theory-knowledge/201611/three-cheers-big-history?amp

    http://www.bighistory.info/bhi_005_004.htm

    https://www.bighistoryproject.com/home

     

  • Ancient Aliens and Big History (Part 1)
    May 21st, 2019

    Episode 26

    Published in 1968, Chariot of the Gods?, written by Erich Von Daniken, sparked a movement of thought and belief that endeavored to rewrite our understanding of the origins of human civilization and advancement. Von Daniken proposed that the historical record was proof of ancient extraterrestrial visitation and intervention across nearly all of the developing cultures throughout antiquity. These records, comprised of ancient artwork, mythological and religious texts, and even architectural structures, were not symbolic of supernatural belief systems and figurative understandings of mythical beings, but rather literal, misunderstood depictions of alien astronaut interactions with early cultures. Mankind advanced by learning from these ancient visitors, undertaking massive stone construction, advanced mythologies, astronomical reference, and even advanced technological mechanics.

    These ideas influenced pop culture and media for decades, spurring televisions shows, books and movies based on these ideas. Even today, Ancient Alien hypothesis is discussed and debated. 

    Von Daniken was not the only major influence though, and any discussion of Ancient Aliens would be remiss without a thorough review of the works of Zecharia Sitchin. Sitchin brought a different approach to the influence of ancient alien visitors in antiquity. Building his research from self-taught translation of cuneiform texts, Sitchin proposed an entire origin story to the very biological beginnings of mankind, stemming from an ancient race of alien beings, known as the Anunnaki. Heralding from the planet Nibiru, a far reaching planet within our own solar system, these Anunnaki came to Earth in search of gold to protect their planet's atmosphere. The Anunnaki, wanting their own race of workers to serve their needs, created, through genetic experimentation, modern humans, influencing their development and ultimately forming the early Sumerian culture. 

    Joined by guest co-host Mike Nelson, we tackle the history and ideas of these two influential authors that gave rise to the massive phenomenon known as Ancient Alien Theory.

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

    Links:

    https://www.grimerica.ca/ep163/

    https://thoseconspiracyguys.com/zecharia-sitchin/

     

  • BONUS - Mandela Effect - Patreon Teaser (w/ guest Mike Nelson)
    May 1st, 2019

    BONUS - Patreon Teaser

    This week I have a bonus episode for you to enjoy. A heavily abridged version of the conversation I had with my guest host, Mike Nelson, over on Patreon. Mike and I explored the Mandela Effect as a follow up to the Food Pyramid episode which only briefly touched on the topic. Mike brought a fresh perspective and some great research and we had a great time! The entire discussion was about an hour and a half, so I pulled out about 30 minutes to highlight and give you a feel for what is available over at the Patreon page. Introducing a concept known as "Collective Effervescence", Mike walks us through a plausible explanation of how the Mandela Effect functions as a beneficial function in social memory...at some of the examples!

    This Patreon exclusive feed is called Expanded Theoryology and is available to all patrons. Mike and I hopped onto SquadCast to record a remote session and just couldn't put away the microphones! 

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

  • The Day Finland Didn't Exist
    April 25th, 2019

    Ep. 25 - Finland Doesn't Exist

    In the Cold War era, Japan and the Soviet Union supposedly shared a secret about a stretch of the Baltic Sea between the Soviet Union and Sweden. Around the mid-20th century, the two nations collectively spread the idea that there was a landmass known as Finland on that stretch of ocean, to keep the good fishing between themselves. The Japanese were free to fish as much as they liked there without worrying about international laws, so long as they give a share to Russia. The company of Nokia is actually owned by the Japanese and is used to hide the shipments  from this secret fishing industry in the guise of hardware. To get all this food across the continent, the trans-Siberian railway was built for this express purpose.

    This is the conspiracy theory that surfaced in 2015 on an unassuming Reddit thread. Not long following, it went viral, traveling across social media and taking on a life of it's own. The fallout was fast and fierce. While many responded jokingly or dismissively, some responses were highly critical, and even outright insulting. Understandably, some Finnish users within Reddit were offended that such a claim was gaining traction. And traction it saw. Spreading across social media sites such as Tumbler and 4chan.

    The question remains, what made this amusing conspiracy theory resonate so well with the public? Why did it capture our imagination, inspire discussion and spur debate? Is it due to some internet "law" that speaks to parody and sarcasm, or is it rooted in something more substantial in literature, like the concept of satire? Why does it speak to us? We try to tackle this issue on this episode of Conspiracy Theoryology.

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

    Links:

    http://yourbrainonfacts.com/

    http://turnofphrases.com/

    https://explorefinlandpodcast.com/

    https://truecrimefinland.squarespace.com/

    https://inktank.fi/podcasts/

    https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/xyd48w/this-dude-accidentally-convinced-the-internet-that-finland-doesnt-exist

    https://theculturetrip.com/europe/finland/articles/does-finland-exist-many-dont-think-so/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poe%27s_law

    https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/2qjohv/what_did_your_parents_show_you_to_do_that_you/cn6pn30/?context=8&depth=9

    https://poseidon01.ssrn.com/delivery.php?ID=362104126089102077125098103024071124050050034063008064066127015031027097112117071089098124053005104010109116078101117081119071104015058046044076005011115077027011064090081060009019103123026083118095091029113076094006066024126126099098024124026086119091&EXT=pdf

    https://www.reddit.com/r/finlandConspiracy/comments/2y0oog/the_finland_conspiracy_and_all_you_need_to_know/

    http://www.bodahub.com/does-finland-exist-conspiracy-theory/

    http://www.stat.fi/tup/satavuotias-suomi/suomi-maailman-karjessa_en.html

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/feb/12/safe-happy-and-free-does-finland-have-all-the-answers

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satire

    https://digitalcommons.uri.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www.bing.com/&httpsredir=1&article=1065&context=srhonorsprog

    https://thetowerphs.com/2015/12/arts-and-entertainment/satire-influencing-audiences-through-emotional-appeal/

    https://theculturetrip.com/europe/finland/articles/podcasts-to-help-you-understand-finland/

  • The Day Sleep Paralysis Took Hold
    April 11th, 2019

    Ep. 24 - Sleep Paralysis

    Why talk about sleep paralysis? Isn’t it usually just an explanation in itself for strange phenomenon?

    Actually, it’s not a definitive answer to all night time visions and experiences. Blaming sleep paralysis is simply blaming a physiological function as a means of dismissing strange experiences. Yet, it has become the go-to explanation, and we are eager to accept it as the reason for any sort of frightening tales of experience that remotely include aspects associated with this poorly understood physical response.

    These experiences run the gamut. Sleep paralysis is now the primary accepted explanation for the night time visitation from demons, witches, ghosts and shadow people, alien visitation and abduction, even spiritual and out-of-body experiences.

    So again, we are left with a phenomenon that would come up again and again in topics of the paranormal and supernatural, but itself is really just as mysterious. Just as fascinating in itself. Which means there is probably some theoryology behind it. Well, let’s try to understand sleep paralysis better.

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

    Links:

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/dream-factory/201409/sleep-paralysis

    https://thepsychologist.bps.org.uk/volume-22/edition-8/terror-night

    https://www.livescience.com/61123-sleep-paralysis-stress-supernatural.html

    https://www.psychologicalscience.org/news/releases/what-predicts-distress-after-episodes-of-sleep-paralysis.html

    https://theconversation.com/understanding-sleep-paralysis-a-terrifying-but-unique-state-of-consciousness-48509

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/your-wise-brain/201601/what-makes-you-feel-threatened

    https://www.luciddreamsociety.com/sleep-paralysis-stories/

    https://www.nosleeplessnights.com/sleep-paralysis-stories-intruder-demon-or-delusion/

    https://esotericscience.org/article12b.htm

    https://thriveglobal.com/stories/the-neuroscience-of-sleep-paralysis/

    http://behdad.org/mirror/www.braindecoder.com/neuroscience-of-sleep-paralysis-1113306867.html

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Explanatory_gap

    https://bigthink.com/neurobonkers/the-seductive-allure-of-the-seductive-allure-of-the-seductive-allure-of-neuroscience-explanations

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/neuroskeptic/2009/01/06/critiquing-a-classic-the-seductive-allure-of-neuroscience-explanations/#.XK7UVphKhPa

    http://sleepingresources.com/scary-sleep-paralysis-stories-waking-up-in-a-nightmare/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductionism

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5002400/

  • That's Not Romantic...It's Creepy!
    April 4th, 2019

    Podswap - Burst Your Bubble Podcast

    A wonderful episode swapping project coordinated by the lovely and talented host and creator Moxie at Your Brain on Facts. Inspired by the days of comic strip artists swapping characters, this operation is meant to introduce new podcasts, not only to you the listener, but us as well, that we think our listeners will find interesting and enjoyable.

    Today, I have to pleasure of bringing you the 50th episode of the Burst Your Bubble podcast, with host Morgan Jaffe. Just like you and I do here at Conspiracy Theoryology, Morgan takes an idea and breaks it down in ways that we might not consider. Finding themes in pop culture, television or film, she dissects the -isms and phobias that are often hidden, or not so hidden within the media. Whether you agree or disagree, Morgan is going to guide you through ideas and perspectives that you may never have considered, peering through a media literacy lens, with a dash of history in the mix.

    Morgan is fun and insightful, and frankly, just fun to listen to. I recommend that you jump over to BurstYourBubblePodcast.com to check out more about the show, and don’t be afraid to subscribe and add the show to your listening repertoire. And don’t worry, I’ll be back next week with another episode of Conspiracy Theoryology. I’ll see you then.

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

  • The Day We Spontaneously Combusted
    March 26th, 2019

    Episode 23 - Spontaneous Human Combustion

    This phenomenon, also known as SHC, probably because it gets old saying the full term pretty quickly in a long conversation, goes back hundreds of years and still befuddles investigators in cases today. This isn’t really a tale of the supernatural, although it certainly gives that vibe. It’s certainly paranormal in the very literal sense of being out-of-the ordinary. The term is used in different ways; By investigators and coroners as a means to close a case and ascribe a lack of explanation as a conclusion; By survivors as a means of giving cause to an otherwise unexplained loss; By story tellers as a means of warning against behaviors and lifestyle.

    Ultimately it’s a phenomenon that’s captures our imagination because spontaneous human combustion hits on so many elements of fear and expectations.

    The best way to talk about SHC is to hear the stories and think about their elements. Only after you get a feel for the stories can we look into look into some possible psychological basis for our fascination. 

    www.conspiracytheoryology.com

    email - contact@conspiracytheoryology.com

    Twitter - @TheoryologyPod

    Facebook - @TheoryologyPodcast

    Patreon - www.patreon.com/conspiracytheoryology

    Music is by adamhenrygarcia.bandcamp.com

    Links:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spontaneous_human_combustion

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/tech/8200790/spontaneous-human-combustion-real-burns-incendiary-bomb-scientist-claims/

    http://www.science-rumors.com/top-10-real-spontaneous-human-combustion-stories-in-the-history/

    http://anomalyinfo.com/?q=Topics/spontaneous-human-combustion-reports-chronological-order

    http://www.newser.com/story/129338/dead-man-spontaneously-combusted-coroner.html

    https://www.thoughtco.com/likelihood-of-scary-things-4151051

    https://psychcentral.com/blog/catastrophic-thinking-when-your-mind-clings-to-worst-case-scenarios/

    http://www.harleytherapy.co.uk/counselling/cognitive-distortions.htm

    https://www.harleytherapy.co.uk/counselling/catastrophizing-always-assuming-the-worse-heres-why-you-should-stop.htm

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/sapient-nature/201310/how-negative-is-your-mental-chatter

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/228818558_Overweighting_of_Small_Probabilities

    https://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2012/12/how-to-avoid-spontaneously-combusting.html

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/conquer-fear-flying/201512/fear-can-make-you-believe-the-worst-will-happen-how

    https://mysteriousuniverse.org/2015/10/engulfed-in-blue-flames-when-spontaneous-human-combustion-strikes/

    https://www.cremationresource.org/cremation/how-is-a-body-cremated.html

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