The Hitherto Unmapped Links Between Whitley’s Visitors & the Process Church of the Final Judgement

“Pain” is the story that Strieber was working on in December 1985, when the memories of his alien encounters first began to surface. It was first published in 1987 but Strieber withdrew it from circulation until early this year, when he released it as a pdf and audio reading at his website — while I was working on “The Prisoner of Infinity.”

According to Strieber, “The story contains a great deal of unconscious material about the experience. In fact, my entire unconscious understanding of close encounter [sic] and its connection to the dangerous sacred is contained in the story. . . .”

In “Pain,” Strieber’s surrogate character is researching a piece about prostitution (Sisters of Mercy) by interviewing working girls when he falls under the spell of a dominatrix, “Janet O’Reilly.” By the end of the story, the dominatrix has been revealed as a supernatural being—or alien?

While Strieber insists the story is fiction, it reads like Strieber’s non-fiction narratives (which he invariably dramatizes), complete with commentary on the nature of the aliens and occult-religious-philosophical asides. It also invokes, indirectly, his childhood experiences of “initiation-by-trauma” government abuse and/or psychic training under the “Sisters of Mercy” at the Secret School. But there is something else which Strieber is no longer talking about.

From the bio notes of the first edition (1981) of The Hunger: “[Strieber] has traveled through many parts of the world, working in fields as diverse as intelligence and filmmaking. His underground films were shown frequently in England in the late sixties. His other work includes a documentary on the Process Church of Final Judgment, an unusual religious group that has been connected with satanism.”

In Communion, Strieber first mentions this period of his life in a typically mysterious terms:

In 1968 I ended up with four to six weeks of “missing time” after a desperate and inexplicable chase across Europe. This is associated with a perfectly terrible memory of eating what I have always thought was a rotten pomegranate, which was so bitter that it almost split my head apart (p. 119).

Pomegranates are associated with Persephone’s “rape” and her journey to the underworld.
In 1968, the senior members of the Process Church (an off-shoot of Scientology), including the Scottish ex-dominatrix Mary Ann McLean, were based in London. Later in the year they left and traveled around Europe, eventually settling in a basement in Rome.
During Strieber’s missing summer of 1968, Strieber recalls a series of bizarre and fragmented memories traveling around Europe with a young Irish woman, Roisin, of shadowy figures in their bedroom, overseeing his sexual interaction with Roisin, and ending up in the catacombs of the Vatican, in Rome, where he has a vision of a devil’s face and talks of a something “so secret” that he cannot know it without hurting himself.
For the “full” story, see the PDF “All Work & No Play,” and listen to the audios, “The Human Factor” and “The Unseen Strieber,” at

9 thoughts on “The Hitherto Unmapped Links Between Whitley’s Visitors & the Process Church of the Final Judgement

  1. Nam\ste` jake……..great research and info………A SPIRITUAL POTENTIAL THAT ISN`T EMBODIED BECOMES, BY SLOW DEGREES A SPIRITUAL DISEASE,A SOUL SICKNESS. JAKE HORSLEY AUTHOR MATRIX WARRIOR hey jake at 79 years old i think i might be qualified to say to younger readers…PAY ATTENTION….. will post your quote on my time line line ok…..take care derm

  2. Absolutely fascinating stuff.

    I had a notion of what “enlightenment” is. That notion has come under scrutiny over the last few years. I think most people understand enlightenment as gaining something – knowledge, wisdom, a higher perspective, etc.. The process to enlightenment generally involves, via various methods, the removal of the ego. The world is apprehended in its immediacy without the intermediating conscious mind. The image of enlightenment is the image of being “in the light”.

    Something like that.

    Now I’ve come to see enlightenment as the losing of something – the reduction of a weight, the lightening of a load. The process of enlightenment involves the removal of what you are terming “crucial fictions” – the removal of the weight of the cover story that we tell ourselves to protect our psyches (in particular the ego). In essence, the development of a “less burdened, cleaner” mind capable of engaging the world with a strong intent or will – to re-associate mind and body in that creative process.

    It’s kind of like Casteneda being admonished to give up personal history. I don’t think it has to be as extreme as that. For now, I think all that is required is to gain a sense that one is in control of one’s life. I.e. that one is somehow a creator rather than a creation.

    For that to happen the ego is required – though it probably needs a good dusting every once and a while.

    Julian Jaynes believed that the conscious mind is a recent development. Maybe he’s right. Maybe the issues facing the mind today are really just the growing pains of the archaic mind coming to grips with the introduction of ego.

  3. Interesting you would comment about enlightenment in response to this present post. Is there a connection?

    I would counter that the ultimate and original crucial fiction is that of the ego, and all others emerge from it, like replicants from the matrix (to mix movie metaphors).

    I just read the first section of JJ as happens. Unfortunately he conflates consciousness with self-consciousness which muddies his argument slightly, but otherwise its compelling material.

    From my observation of Dave Oshana, there does seem to be a sort of “enlightened ego” that replaces the false self, perhaps an awareness of a self-aware self that is aware first and foremost of being a fiction but it somehow able to survive the full brunt of that awareness with its sense of humor intact? : D

    I believe language and the thought that stems from it is the means by which the false self or crucial fiction is narrated.

    The word, in other words, was the beginning of the end of true, enlightened consciousness.

    • My comment about enlightenment wasn’t really a response to the content of the present post – though my brain could probably construct ways to connect my comment with the content of this post. My comment was going to be a response to the comments you made in the MP3 recordings where you were questioning the validity or usefulness of your present work – i.e. do the “means” of your research (which might possibly hurt Whitley Strieber) justify the “ends” of your research (whatever that may be). I might have a few thoughts on that but what I really wanted to give to you was my support. That I think your work here is important. That your interest in coming to understand your experiences through an understanding of Whitley Strieber’s experiences has been beneficial to me as well. I think you are developing (or re-developing from the past work of Freud, et al.) a framework whereby the traumatized human psyche may be better understood and through this understanding attempt healing. Though not worded well, my comment meant to evoke that the enlightened (as being unburdened rather than receiving vision) mind is the healed mind – the non-deluded mind – the mind capable of decisions based on intent and capable of being responsible for those decisions – the mind moved through self will to create, and so on. As fascinatingly far out as Prisoner of Infinity appears, I see this pragmatic “something” in your work.

      I was having trouble wording what I wanted to say so I eventually deleted all of this precursor information.

      I love your description of the “enlightened ego”. Once i figured it out (it took a few readings) it made me laugh.

      I see a difference of opinion though. The way you word it is that it is something that can be gained – “‘enlightened ego’ that replaces the false self”. I wonder if it might be more that the “enlightened ego” is something that is inherent to the human condition and that the onion skin layers of delusion need to be peeled away to be re-aquainted with it – kind of like the analogy you use of digging down to find the gold nugget at the bedrock layer. This is probably not provable but for the moment the thought gives me a pleasant feeling.

  4. Thank you John.

    I agree that the enlightened ego is the authentic core self and as such can’t ever be gained or lost, only experienced or not. (And even that’s debatable)

    Pleasant feelings,

  5. “I believe language and the thought that stems from it is the means by which the false self or crucial fiction is narrated.

    The word, in other words, was the beginning of the end of true, enlightened consciousness.”

    In the beginning was the word, and the word was “canceled.”

    Gotta let out a “Naked” reference.

    Anyway, I’ve been reading your brothers book, so far find it honest, entertainment, funny and acutely sad—especially when he talks about his spiritual relationship with Hall High. It was echo back in his personal interpretation of Kate Bush’s ‘Under The Ivy’. The last paragraph of that interpretation kind of mirrors those sentences I just quoted of yours. Which is another reason why I bring this up.

    This will make my anticipation of ‘Paper Tiger’ even more engaging as I’ll be looking for cross-references to find possible clues why he decided to take his life down that path.

  6. If you mean by the nagging sense of directionless, and trying to find a sustainable one, yes.
    As of right now I stand in the middle of four-way street.

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