June 28, 2017

Have You Ever Seen Something That You Just Couldn’t Explain?

Have You Ever Seen Something That You Just Couldn’t Explain

Have you ever experienced something that didn’t make sense? Something that did not compute with your rational self, so you convinced yourself you must not have seen things correctly? I would wager we all have. For the most part, these things are harmless, but it is those times where it could be harmful that I want to concentrate on today.

I saw a video years ago of a church shooting. A man walked down the aisle toward the pastor, shooting as he went. I couldn’t find the video now, but I believe he made it to the front of the church, shooting the pastor several times before he was stopped. Later, when parishioners were questioned, some said they assumed it was a play.

If you live in a suburb and see what you think, at first, is a bear, don’t dismiss it as a large dog. I live 30 miles from Minneapolis, in a fairly large suburb. The town next door had a bear wander in just a couple months ago. If you were walking your dog or small child, a hungry bear could be a big problem! The same can be said for any wildlife! In the last five years, I have seen reports of a puma, coyote, and an alligator all within 15 miles of me.

A few years back, while driving to work one morning I saw movement out of the corner of my eye. It was, at the time, what looked like a very large model plane, flying fast and very low, less than fifty yards from the road. This was after we started hearing about drones being used in combat but before we started seeing images of them. I knew this was too big and fast to be a model plane, and too small and low to be even a small passenger plane, not to mention too military-looking to be a civilian passenger plane. At the time, I figured it had to be a drone. Later, when images started popping up of some of the drones used, I saw one very similar to the “UFO” I had seen earlier.

Big deal, I saw a flying object I believed at the time to be a drone. I’ll admit I was fascinated by how this thing was flying. Having been an aviation electrician in the Navy, attached to an Aircraft carrier for four years, I have seen hundreds of planes fly. I had never seen anything this small move like this. The operator was clearly trying to get somewhere before rush hour set in and the sun was fully up.

Now, let’s say this happened ten years from now and drone strikes on American soil are rare but do happen. What if the car in front of me was believed to be a terrorist and the drone opened fire on it? If I don’t trust and believe my eyes and act immediately, I could be caught up in the attack.

In the book The Survivors Club, Author Ben Sherwood explores a theory developed by a man named John Leach called “The 10/80/10 rule”. In summary, the rule states that the top 10% of people in a crisis excel; they think clearly and take immediate action. The middle group comprises 80% of people; they are “quite simply stunned and bewildered”; “reasoning is significantly impaired and thinking is difficult”. The last 10% of people are the “ones you definitely want to avoid in an emergency”.

A few pages later, he explains something called ‘behavioral inaction’; “The current theory of behavioral inaction goes like this: As your frontal lobes process the site of an airplane wing on fire, they seek to match the information with memories of similar situations in the past. If you have no stored experience of a plane crash, your brain can’t find a match and gets stuck in a loop trying and failing to come up with the right response. Hence: immobility.”

We can prepare ourselves for a great many things that we’ve never actually lived through. I do this by inserting myself in situations I see in movies, TV, news stories, books and so on. But we should also try and condition ourselves to take action immediately even if we can’t understand, process or make sense of what we are seeing.

If you ever see something that doesn’t jive with how things should be or normally are, that is your intuition telling you to pay attention! Don’t let your intellect silence it! Pay attention to whatever is out of place, if it turns out to be nothing, move on. If it turns out to be something, your mind is primed to take action.

If you see a 75 foot lizard spewing fire, a spaceship descend from the sky, Super Mario and Big foot playing checkers, someone may have slipped you a funky mushroom. Seriously though, there is a saying that goes, “If you hear the thunder of hooves, think horses, not zebras”. While I agree, you should still get out of the way and make sure what it is once you’re safe.

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  1. Lion Warrior says:

    Very true assessment in your post and all the more reason to pray without ceasing (1 Thess 5:17) than to rely on our finite mind for sure.

    Also, I don’t believe in coincidence that you mentioned The Survivor’s Club…I have the book right next to my laptop. :)

  2. Pamela Hall says:

    Chris, great article as usual. Off topic, but any idea if/when the forum will be restored?? I sure miss it!! Thanks for all you do!! :)

    • Chris Ray says:

      Thanks Pamela. I honestly don’t know when the forum might come back. I need some time to figure out why it was causing the issues that led to it being taken offline, and what if anything I can do to remedy it. The problem is I am paying for a shared webhost account, and the forum software caused me to use more then my allotted amount of resources. This caused me to catch flak from the hosting company on a few occasions, and eventually to the entire blog being cached and issued a warning that could have led to being taken down permanently. One solution is to get my own webserver, but that is far outside of my means. So until I can figure out why it was chewing up CPU, it’ll have to stay offline.

      • Pamela Hall says:

        Chris, thanks for the explanation. Sorry for the problems. Reading pearls of wisdom & encouragement from the forum members was a real comfort to me in these tumultuous times. Thank you for all your hard work. Praying the resources will be revealed & problems solved for the forum to be restored!! :)

  3. I live in north Texas just north of Dallas, Texas. Early this spring I heard, I didn’t clearly see, a drone repeatedly flying over our subdivision making sweeps in a methodical manner. Our son lives in The Colony, Texas, & he saw one literally pass by his balcony at his apartment. He was in the Navy & saw them daily so he knew what he was looking at & was very surprised to see it. I’d like to know why they’re flying here in the USA when we aren’t in any sort of armed conflict currently? I also find it very disturbing how our government has invaded our lives & removed so much of our freedoms most of all.

  4. Son of Liberty says:

    Good article. In counseling class I teach there is a fight, flight, or freeze syndrome, and we react to threatening situations in one of these ways. I also teach the Cooper Color Code of awareness to accompany that. Many believe the percentage of those who ‘freeze’ is about 75% (near the 80% you reference), and only 10 – 15% of people react positively (or appropriately ) to a given threat.

    We can, as you allude, be in that 10 – 15% by thinking/practicing various scenarios of how we might respond to a given scenario – and then practice, practice, practice that!

    Because sitting up in bed, or standing up, can put us into a mental fog within ten seconds when a smoke alarm goes off (delaying or denying appropriate action) I have taken to hitting the floor as soon as I hear the smoke alarm go off — a common occurrence when I burn the bacon! Practice instills in our brain a ‘normal’ appropriate reaction that can/will save our life — in a multitude of scenarios.

    A good imagination is vital, as the more detail, and the more feeling you can generate/imagine during your running play of said scenario, the more you will act appropriately. If played and replayed in your mind, and in your actions (think motor skills), the more you will act in ways which will save your life and the lives of those you love.

    Blessings on you, keep articles like this coming as they are truly helpful!

    Son of Liberty

  5. This phenomena has also been referred to as the normalcy bias. I ran into it myself recently when staying at a friends apt. When I returned mid-day to the apt the key was not working properly after insertion. I looked more closely and saw that the door jam had been shaved away- in other words someone had tried to jimmy it open.

    At that point I felt confused and bewildered. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I realized the thief might be in the apt at that very moment looking out the peephole at me. I high tailed it out of there. Turns out the lock was ruined by the thief but they did not gain entry. But good lesson for me about normalcy bias.

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