The "real rocket man" is lost in the shadows of history

Written By: Mr. Smith


  • What is the connection between UFOs, the Roswell Incident, Grey aliens, Robert Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, Ozzy Osbourne, Jimmy Page, The Beatles, backward messages hidden in music, solid rocket fuel, and a fatal explosion?

    The common thread, you are wondering? It might take a bit of a stretch, but here it is, in no particular order.


    The Beatles' epic
    "Sargent Pepper's
    Lonely Hearts Club Band"

    The Beatles, Ozzy Osbourne, and Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page are all in the music biz. The backward message issue comes in to play here as well. Musicians (those Satan worshipping loonies) have used hidden messages to coerce young people to kill their parents, bite heads off of animals, and otherwise justify insane acts of violence. Just kidding. But the accusations fly, and have for a long time. Ozzy Osbourne (the Black Sabbath frontman who went solo, then rejoined Black Sabbath after sobering up) has a song called "Mr. Crowley," which refers to none other than Aleister Crowley. Jimmy Page owns Crowley's old mansion, as well as a grandiose collection of all things Crowley. It seems Jimmy has a bit of an Aleister fetish. The Beatles have the backward tunes and a picture of Crowley on the cover of one of their albums. No big deal, you say. Lots of musicians, especially the hard rockers and metalheads, try to work some of Crowley into their works and images, if for no other reason than to associate their images with an icon of "evil."

    True enough. But that's entertainment.

    Another connection to Aleister Crowley is one of his disciples - a self-taught chemist named John Whiteside Parsons (a.k.a. "Jack"). Werner von Braun called Jack Parsons the "true" father of American rocketry. Parsons was one of the original scientists involved in early rocket technology, specifically the chemical formulations for solid rocket fuel. He also did a great deal of work with jet assisted takeoffs, thereby allowing aircraft to take off from shorter runways. The group he worked with at the California Institute of Technology eventually morphed into the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). It is curious, then, why Parsons's story is so foggy, to say the least.

    It is widely known that Parsons was a follower of Aleister Crowley. Crowley was an English poet, magician, Satan follower, and a member (later the leader) of the Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.), or "Order of the Eastern Temple," which was originally a cult of high ranking Freemasons. Crowley wrote several books that influenced many later cults and rock bands, and claimed himself as the "wickedest man in the world." Crowley's involvement with O.T.O. functioned as his means of disseminating his beliefs and practices, as well as his books. His work to promote the spiritual philosophy, "Thelema," (a Greek word meaning "will" or "intention") was done largely via the O.T.O. A great deal of complexity surrounds the ideas and beliefs of Thelema, as well as Crowley's life, but his influence remains significant, and was especially for Parsons. Crowley died in 1947.


    Robert Heinlein's
    Stranger in a
    Strange Land

    Although he wasn't a musician and probably didn't play his music backwards, Parsons was involved with two rather famous writers - L. Ron Hubbard (Dianetics, Scientology, Battlefield Earth) and Robert Heinlein. Hubbard and Heinlein were both friends of Parsons and they shared his occult interests in magic, as well as inspirations from Crowley and "Thelema." Parsons and his group attempted to create an incarnation of the goddess Babalon. The purpose of the Babalon Working, according to Parsons, was to create this entity, thus ushering in the Aeon of Horus. Some argue that this being manifested in the form of an Grey alien being, possibly in Roswell, New Mexico. Heinlein's involvement is further supported through Stranger in a Strange Land, where the concept of Thelema is illustrated, but cleverly coded in the text.

    Evidence from the Church of Scientology suggests that Hubbard was sent in by the government to dismantle the group of "black magicians," including Parsons. Another Church of Scientology statement claims that Hubbard actually broke up the group, as though he completely opposed Parsons and never participated in what happened. It seems the church tried to clear Hubbard of any involvement with Parsons, his entourage, or any of the "black magic" going on in that group.


    Jack Parsons

    In 1950, the FBI investigated Parsons for having classified documents from his work with the Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology at Pasadena (GALCIT). This explains why but a trace of information available from "official" sources, like the Web sites of NASA and the JPL, regarding the contributions of Parsons. For a man who was considered so significant in rocketry (and thus, to the space program and national defense), who has a statue at JPL, and a crater on the dark side of the moon in his name, it seems odd that Parsons is "lost" in history. His interest and activity in the O.T.O. is what keeps his spirit alive today, but the double-edged sword is that is also got him "accidentally" dead. (Parsons died in an "accidental" explosion while moving volatile chemicals from his home laboratory in 1952).

    This also leads to the UFO connection. Some UFO researchers believe that the first flying saucer and Grey alien incidents, particularly Roswell, stemmed from the creation of the entity envisioned by Crowley and later, by Parsons. A sketch of an Enochian entity (from Crowley) looks strikingly similar to the quintessential Greys - the iconic extraterrestrial beings. Parsons had some kind of contact in a New Mexico desert, too, at this time, with a being from Venus. The timing of this also lends to the mystery because it all happened in 1946, just prior to the Roswell incident of 1947.

    There are a number of other interesting connections with this group and the things that went on in Jack Parsons's life and how they relate to the events of that time. Jack Parsons put the "JP" in JPL with his contributions to the science of solid rocket fuels and jet assisted take-off, but his other life pursuits effectively shadowed those contributions in a haze of mystery. His death, accident or not, automatically raises the skeptic's eyebrow simply because his associations with certain people at that time, coupled with his knowledge of a sensitive subject, made him a target. Parsons's story is a conspiracy theorist's "land of opportunity" with all the coincidences involved and all the connections to prominent people at such a significant time.

    The further this gets explored, the more questions arise. What did Parsons really know about UFOs and ETs if anything, and was his death the possible result of him knowing too much? Intentional or not, the story of Jack Parsons creeps into too many areas not to NOT be considered significant.

    08/02/2003 10:51:57 AM