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anomalous luminous phenomena (alp)
Anomalous luminous phenomena (alps) are lights of various sizes which are generated by stresses and strains within the earth's crust preceding earthquakes, according to Michael Persinger, Ph.D. He developed the tectonic strain theory (TST) as an explanation for what is going on when people observe UFOs.
According to Persinger,
[ALPs] display odd movements, emit unusual colors or sounds and occasionally deposit physical residues. When these phenomena closely approach a human observer, exotic forces and perceptions are frequently reported. Most ALPs display life times in the order of minutes and appear to show spatial dimensions in the order of meters. Despite their remarkably similar descriptions over time and across cultures, the transience and localized occurrence of these phenomena have limited their systematic investigation.*
Persinger claims that his TST is not meant to debunk UFO claims but to provide a means of predicting earthquakes. "Persinger has apparently done a computer analysis of about 3,000 UFO sightings and has found that many of them occurred weeks or months before the start of earth tremors."*
The experience of an alp has a psychological side as well because of direct stimulation of the observer's brain and communal reinforcement. Persinger believes that the energy from tectonic fractures causes some observers to hallucinate or lose consciousness. Those who share the experience confirm and reinforce the "reality" of each other's UFO observations.
The Tectonic Strain Theory of UFO's by Michael A. Persinger, Ph.D
Tectonic Strain and the Earth Light Theory: Gravitational Anomalies by Christopher Montgomery
'More ghosts' after earthquake The "sheer strength and power" of the 4 September 7.1-magnitude earthquake in New Zealand has more than doubled the number of reported supernatural events in Canterbury, a paranormal investigator says. Unfortunately, the investigator doesn't say how many sightings there were before the earthquake. Maybe Persinger is right and earthquakes cause some people to hallucinate; or maybe, as one New Zealand skeptic put it: "people's minds [are] playing tricks on them in the post-quake environment. You may not feel an aftershock, but it will still make things rattle. People's minds fill in the blanks, and they tend to fill in the blanks with fairytales, unfortunately."
Quaking lights Scientists drawn to legends of luminous displays that precede temblors By Alberto Enriquez Anchorage Daily News