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Book Review: Communion by Whitley Strieber

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Communion by Whitley Strieber

The abduction of a man from his secluded vacation cabin is featured in this autobiography by author Whitley Strieber. Strieber, a man on Christmas vacation with his family, goes skiing, eats holiday leftovers with his wife and son, then goes to bed early. But strange things happen during the night. Strieber’s effort to reconstruct bizarre memories of floodlights in the bedroom, owls, and strange dreams trigger an exploration into Strieber’s buried past. As Strieber begins to unlock hidden memories, he learns the truth about what happened to him on December 26, 1985 in upstate New York, USA.

Hypnotic regression produced memories of robot-like humanoids which lined up in formation to physically carry him out of the cabin that night. Attempts to unlock buried memories of Anne, Strieber’s wife, result in statements made under regression that suggest her duty is not to remember what happened. Rather her role in the repeated abductions of her husband is to serve as his security blanket.

Strieber’s son was also an apparent witness to part of the abduction of his father. Other witnesses to some of the strange happenings on that vacation were another couple, who became so distraught by their dreams, that they cut their vacation short and went back home.

Strieber links the memory of another abduction experience to its cardboard scent and to cinnamon as the closest fragrance describing the female Alien. He remembers a needle being inserted into his brain and the terror he felt each time the Aliens touched him.

Under regression, Strieber recalls an abduction as a young boy and sees soldiers from Earth. He asks the Alien why the soldiers were brought here. The Alien answers, "Because they were alone." As Strieber points out to the reader, perhaps so many abductions occur in isolated areas because the risk of detection is less than in the cities.



Strieber describes a four to six week period of missing time experienced while in his thirties when he traveled through Europe. He recalls being in a hospital setting during that time, although he knows he was not hospitalized on that trip. Strieber also discusses being tattooed by the Aliens with a triangle mark, which Strieber ascribes to ancient traditions of mind, body and heart.

Strieber discusses typical screen memories of other abductees including deer, owls, and rabbits. Strieber is also one of the few abductees who writes under his real name.

The book contains other fascinating elements, such as alien architecture, a blue crystal, and nasal surgery. Hearing voices talk to him inside his head and believing he has been chosen for a special purpose by the Aliens are other interesting subjects. Differences exist between the book and the movie version of Strieber’s story.

Unlike the book, the movie’s fictional climax shows Strieber confidently walking back into a landed UFO to visit his newfound friends. "Communion" is a classic in its subject matter, having awakened a new generation to contact with others from parts of space unexplored by us. To order the book, click on the bookcover above.

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