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A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

BIHS to Hold Third Installment of Richard L. Thompson Lecture Series In-Person and Online
By Prishni Sutton, BIHS   |  Jan 09, 2024
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The Bhaktivedanta Institute for Higher Studies (BIHS) will host the third installment of an ongoing lecture series based on the books of Richard L. Thompson (Sadaputa Dasa, 1947-2008) with a hybrid (online/in-person) event at the BIHS Headquarters in Gainesville, FL, on February 3, 2024, 11 AM to 1 PM EST. 

In this series, Thompson’s books are covered chapter by chapter with a presentation summarizing contents and central arguments, followed by a discussion. The focus of this installment will be on Sadaputa’s book Parallels: Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena, published in 1993.

Speaking of this book, Sadaputa said, “There are many parallels between specific details in Vedic accounts of the behavior and powers of humanlike races that use flying machines and corresponding details in UFO close-encounter cases. These parallels provide my main impetus for writing this book.” Roger W. Wescott, Professor of Anthropology & Linguistics at Drew University, said the book was “Carefully researched and well written; Parallels is a major addition to ufological literature.” 

BIHS Director Brahmatirtha Das speaking at the series inauguration.

The first session discussing Parallels will feature a presentation by the BIHS Director, Bob Cohen (Brahmatirtha Das), focusing on the book’s Introduction along with his personal experience as a close friend working with Sadaputa. Michael Cremo (Drutakarma Das), another prominent collaborator, especially during their days working together on projects at the San Diego Bhaktivedanta Institute, will also speak on the production of both Parallels and the book they co-authored, Forbidden Archeology: the Hidden History of the Human Race

In Parallels, initially published as Alien Identities, Sadaputa analyzes numerous reports on UFO phenomena that have arisen in the media since the end of WWII, with a number of them exhaustively documented. But numerous questions also remain, not just about the authenticity and origins of these strange phenomena but also the possible intentions of intelligent beings that could be associated with them. In Parallels, Thompson considers numerous contemporary reports while drawing upon accounts identified with ancient civilizations. Startling parallels between modern UFO accounts and events described in the Sanskrit writings of the Indian subcontinent offer insights into the nature of events reported not just in the ancient past but also in the recent past as well. 

Six-part series on Human Devolution

Starting this month, Drutakarma Das will also be giving a 6-part lecture series on his book Human Devolution: A Vedic Alternative to Darwin’s Theory (2003). It offers a fresh and scientifically based perspective on human origins, with an emphasis on state-of-the-art consciousness studies, and takes the reader on a fascinating tour through incredible enigmas of time and space, ranging from Precambrian microfossils to black holes to the planets of demigods. Drutakarma explains how we devolved from pure consciousness to this earthly realm.

Registration and Links

Registration for the events is free; please check the BIHS Events page for the latest information and lecture Zoom links for the upcoming sessions. Recordings for previous sessions on Mechanistic and Nonmechanistic Science and Vedic Cosmography and Astronomy are also available on the BIHS YouTube channel.

Background photo by Felix Mittermeier.

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