GSP's Close Encounters

Thinking about Georges St-Pierre creates a picture of a stoic for the ages: consummate professionalism and discipline, a specimen of physical perfection, king of the UFC’s welterweight division who has been a pound-for-pound great for what seems like millennia, the very model of consistency and emotional invulnerability in a sport famous for neither.

Yet, despite what we think we know about St-Pierre, he recently allowed the world a peak behind his stone-cold image. On a recent episode of The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, GSP opened up about his fears--not of failure or of other fighters or even of career-ending injury, but of close encounters with extraterrestrials:

“I can’t say something happen to me. I have no proof. I just don’t know. But I’m going to tell you something and I’m going to be honest about it. Sometimes, I’m looking at the clock. And It’s like I wake up and I look at the clock right after, and it’s like the clock advance like four hours, or two hours. There’s a time zone that I don’t remember what happened…. Or I can drive my car and it already happen. I drove my car in a normal day, going somewhere, and I look, and it’s two hour pass. Two hour had just pass like this (snaps fingers) … This is like a third-type encounter.”

Host Joe Rogan asked GSP how long he’s been experiencing these encounters. “Since I’m a kid,” St-Pierre answered.

“Whatever information you got, spill it,” invited Rogan.

“I will talk about it one day. I’m gonna talk about my fear. But now I don’t get deep into it. But, I promise one day I’ll talk about stuff,” said St. Pierre.

We’re open-minded here at Fightland, and despite our reservations, we prefer not to dismiss alternative perspectives. So we decided to ask an expert about GSP’s otherworldly experiences. Nick Pope is a former member of the British government’s Ministry of Defense, where he spent 21 years. For part of that time, he was charged with investigating UFOs, alien abductions, and other phenomena that can’t be explained away by earthly science. In an email, Pope offered his insights into St. Pierre’s situation and left the door open to the possibility that the greatest welterweight in UFC history is also interacting with beings not of this world.

Fightland: What could it indicate if a person feels they are losing hours of time at random moments throughout their life but have zero symptoms of a medical issue to explain them?
Nick Pope: There could be a number of causes, including medical (especially neurological), psychological, or psychiatric factors. Memory and perception are complex issues and in relation to time, most people can recall occasions where time has appeared to drag, or fly by, depending upon what they're doing and their state of mind at the time. 

Could there be an extraterrestrial explanation?
So-called "missing time" is often cited by UFO investigators as being an indicator of an alien abduction. A typically reported scenario involves someone driving home, but arriving much later than expected. When the period of "missing time" is probed--often using regression hypnosis--witnesses will recall being abducted by aliens, who then erased the memory from the person's conscious mind, leaving them only with the mystery that their journey took longer than expected. Interestingly, there are parallels between modern alien abduction reports and folklore, where people encountered fairies or other small humanoid entities. Time passes quicker in fairyland than in the real world, e.g., in classic stories such as “Rip van Winkle.”  

What could St-Pierre be experiencing?
I don't know. I've investigated hundreds of cases where people claim to have had alien encounters of some kind. In my experience, these people are generally truthful and are describing their experiences in an honest way. However, none of this means these people have genuinely encountered extraterrestrials, even if that's what they sincerely believe. While stories of encountering unknown entities are cross-cultural and have been told throughout human history, it doesn't mean they are true in a literal, physical way--only that people think they're true. While I can't rule out a literal explanation, there may be other factors at work here.

What is your experience with alien encounters that aren’t physical, such as in St-Pierre’s case? Can you explain that genre of alien encounter and what it could indicate?
I don't know Georges St-Pierre personally and haven't investigated his experiences, so I can't really say what he's experiencing. But inevitably, with these sorts of non-physical encounters, the evidence brings us back to the most complex, fascinating and enigmatic thing in the known universe: the human brain. This is in no way to imply that people having these experiences are mad or that it's "all in the mind," but to give one example, we know that some hallucinations are so vivid as to be indistinguishable from reality.  

During the podcast, Joe Rogan mentioned how crazy it would be if aliens had “manufactured” GSP to be a mixed martial arts fighter. Are you aware of aliens attempting to encounter/ being interested in humans who are extreme athletes, who are physically different than almost everyone else because of their athletic condition?
UFO witnesses and people who claim to have had had alien encounters come from all walks of life. Despite various research aimed at finding a common link, there's no obvious connection. I've not heard of other extreme athletes who've had these experiences, but bear in mind that many people don't report such things, for fear of being disbelieved or ridiculed. This is particularly true when it comes to politicians, celebrities, and other public figures.

You said, 'Some hallucinations are so vivid as to be indistinguishable from reality.' Is it possible that all extraterrestrial encounters are just happening in the mind, that they're simply mental experiences that are indistinguishable from reality? In other words, do you believe in aliens and alien encounters/abductions?
I'm open-minded about what's going on. We know some UFO sightings are real, physical events, because we have some cases where there were multiple witnesses and other cases where UFOs were seen by pilots and simultaneously tracked on radar. But with alien abductions or other alien encounters the evidence is less strong, and it's perfectly possible that all such accounts are attributable to some sort of hallucination, or other psychological factors. That's not to say I completely rule out the more exotic possibilities - after all, the believers only have to be right once!

Check out these related stories:

GSP Defies Expectations, Gets Animated

Defining Moment - The Return of the King