On an October morning in the mid nineties, Anne and I got in our car and drove down the driveway of our cabin for the last time. My book sales had been declining for years. We simply did not have enough money to both keep our son in school and pay our mortgage. (It was just as well. After the premiere episode of Southpark lampooned me in 1997, my sales dropped through the floor. We ended up taking bankruptcy. At times, we had to borrow money from friends to keep going.)

On that morning, we told each other that we would never return. Could never bear to. For years, I suppressed every memory, every thought of the place. But something came up that caused me to feel an obligation to return. (More on what that was in a later post.) I had to go to the cabin.

Because times are changing and there are now many people who have realized that I have a worthwhile story to tell, and I know how important this story actually is, I decided that it was time to face my memories and my ghosts.

On February 22, I went back. As I flew from Los Angeles to New York, I was in a dark mood. By the time I got into the rental car, I was apprehensive and startlingly sad.  As I drove toward the cabin, all the emotions of loss and the black despair I had on the day we left re-emerged. I was reliving my loss as if it had happened the day before.

We went down the long driveway to the cabin. As we approached the gate, I saw that it was exactly the same as the day we left. Only the gate code had been changed. The gate rolled open and we headed up to the house.

And there it was, the home of my happiness and my great adventure. And it was no longer mine–my precious gateway to other worlds and the great mystery that surrounds it belonged to somebody else now.

What would the new owners be like? I had already been told that they hadn’t had experiences. But that was no surprise. After all, the visitors had wasted no time in following me to Texas when we left. You will find this mentioned in Super Natural and other places.

It was so lovely, a marvelous great log home. The sadness now became like a great, dark wall. How could I enter? How could I bear this?

Standing in the doorway was a young couple. They stepped forward. I saw warm eyes, and I saw the kind of open, true greeting that you do not often see in our world. They took my hands and welcomed me into their home that was once my home and remains the home of my heart.

Incredibly, impossibly, I was actually back in the family room where so much of my family happiness had unfolded, so much warmth and love. And here were these two warm, profoundly dignified human beings welcoming me. I thought to myself that the house has attracted some truly lovely people.

I remembered this room in our days, watching baseball games, playing Monopoly, our son’s young friends as our guests. I heard the voices and the laughter echo in the silence that has been within me since that last day. I felt the love in this house, and in that moment, I fell in love with a family that I had only known for seconds. When we shook hands, their touch instantly belonged to my heart.

At the same time, the sadness was now so overwhelming that it almost caused me to break down into tears. But these warm, sweet people–they truly welcomed me. They embraced me with the kindness in their eyes.

As I walked through the house with them, they showed me a poster they’d had made of the cover of Communion, that now hangs in the old basement library where I spent so much time reading before the fire.

As we went upstairs, I walked past the meditation room where the barrier between the living and the dead had been pierced. I walked through the master bedroom where the implant event had taken place. This was their bedroom, but they gave it to me for the night.

Bedtime came and I changed into my pajamas in the master bathroom, as I had done so very many times so long ago. I went into the bedroom. It was full of cameras, but placed discreetly enough that I could sleep.

I slept until about a quarter of three, then did the early-morning meditation in a chair beside the bed.

The next morning, we went down to the circle of stones I’d built to commemorate the original contact experience on December 26, 1985.

The Whitley of the past–that old story–is now told. Another Whitley is present now, with a new story to tell, which is the next story, of the path to contact and what comes later and will redefine what it means to be human, that Anne so accurately and presciently called communion: the acceptance of the hidden into the known.

That night, I was to stay in the cabin alone, a precious chance for me.

The young couple had returned to their city home. By text, they suggested a restaurant for me. I took them up on it, and after I finished dinner, the server told me that they had paid for my food. I was surprised, then not. It was just the sort of thing they would do.

When I got back to the house, as I always did in the old days, I turned out all the lights. I spent some time in the mediation room. This time, the sighing of the house was pretty dramatic. I cannot say that it wasn’t the wind…but there wasn’t much wind. I cannot say that it wasn’t the house settling.

When dawn came, I awoke to its gray breaking. As I gazed out the windows beside the bed, watching the pines across the driveway slowly take form, it was as if the twenty-five years had never even happened. I was home. Then I remembered: this is not your place any more. That hit hard. But the sense of welcome I’d felt from the new owners immediately reappeared. I know now that I can return, an extraordinary blessing for me.

But it was time to leave. I dressed and packed, and drove out into the gray winter morning. Yet again, I crossed the mountain.

Then came the drive back through the foggy dawn, the passage through a bustling airport, the roaring, constricted flight, and back to see relatives and do the Archives of the Impossible conference in Texas.

My beloved aunt, among last of her generation in our family, greeted me in her gentle way and I returned to the embrace of my family, my brother and cousins and friends of all my life.

As always, the mystery of the visitors came with me. At three this morning, I was awakened by a kiss or touch brushed along my upper lip. When I got up to do the sensing exercise, I felt embraced by this dangerous lover and teacher of mine. Clear in the strangeness, Anne’s presence was strong, holding and sustaining.

I saw that I had come to the end of a long, dark journey. I have left the anger and regret behind, replacing it with love for the people who now possess the cabin. He is a student of the place already, studying its archaeology, I think to connect with the ghosts of the native people who still walk this land, waiting for the day and hour that they may return.

This noon in San Antonio, I went to lunch with my aunt and her daughters, in a local restaurant owned by an old friend. We chatted and laughed, secretly embracing one another’s hearts in the way families and good friends do, and I felt the flowing of the waters of life, and the pain that has been with me so long being carried at last into the past.

As to why I went, that’s another story, and with it what happened during the meditations, and, above all, at the circle. Let me process that. More later!

 

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42 Comments

  1. You are a beautiful man, Whitley. Strong, too. What a life you have lived…what a journey you are on.

    Thank you for sharing it will us. Thank you for all that you do for all of us.

  2. Dear Whitley, I’m so pleased you braved your sadness and returned to the cabin. Just yesterday I left replies on your cabin page. It’s a place that haunts me through your words about it – and yes, your story is important, it has so much to teach us about what is to come. Bless you x

  3. Wow. So touching. So beautifully written. Thank you for sharing

  4. You went back on 2/22/22…interesting… was that date intentional?

  5. So beautifully written Whitley, I am moved to tears. What a gift to read this today.

  6. Whitley, our life on this planet is sooo emotionally/physically bittersweet. Bless you now and always for all you do for ‘THE GOOD.’ As I was reading this recent JOURNAL, my phone rang. It was my niece wanting to tell me about a conversation she had with my brother and sister-in-law yesterday. THEY WERE BOTH STUNNED A FEW DAYS AGO AT SEEING A LARGE WHITE OWL standing on the road going to their house. I believe those entities that are always with you just gave you a THUMBS UP.

    “In that night, the owl, bringer of death and wisdom, will potentially reign as silent mistress of our souls. Like the old song, but perhaps with a somewhat different tone, she will have the whole world in her hands…so the owl, flying through the mystery of the experience, brings with the danger of her talons and her tearing beak also the revelatory reflection in her fearsome eyes…If this owl should ever take flight in our general night, we will find ourselves face-to-face with a truly remarkable predator, who will educate us if we face her, but steal us away if we run.”

    — Whitley Strieber in The Super Natural: A New Vision of the Unexplained

  7. Simply beautiful Whitley. I’m so happy that you got to return to the cabin. Have joy.

  8. So wonderful that you had some kind new owners to help you have that process. We all have regrets which I think can bind us to our past. To have such a lovely experience at the cabin was a gift, so happy for you! Please keep us posted when/where the documentary will air?

  9. This is so beautiful, with tears in my eyes. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself, of Anne’s and your life. Many of us have been following you for years, sending you love from afar. May you always be blessed ~

  10. Always love your journals… frankly I don’t know how you do it all… the podcasts, writing books, conferences, websites and journals.

    That region of update NY Hudson valley etc
    Has monolithic structures of stones and an iron vein that runs in the mountains …glad you could return

  11. What a beautiful essay, Whitley. What a healing journey of grace. Blessings.

  12. 2/22/22 was an amazing day for me too, but for other reasons. Seems like a lot of energy is around these days.

    Looking forward to the follow-up journal!

  13. Very moving. I too lived in a cabin in upstate NY. My wife, child and I had to sell it as well when my scientific career went down in flames as I stood up for truth/justice in unequivocal ways. My visitor experiences started as a toddler, and Communion (read as a young teen) was a God/dess send as it answered (or delivered new & better) questions burning within me. I have been a subscriber from the beginning, read almost all your books (starting with The Wolfen, read to me aloud by my stepmother) and have, like so many, deeply appreciated your contributions of such depth and beauty to our collective emergence into this new stage in our relationships with the unknown. As such, reading this just about choked me up. When you find the ripe time, I am sure I speak for many when I say once again: thank you most kindly for sharing such intimacy and truly vulnerable details, old friend. You are a gladiator of the highest form.

  14. Years ago I had searched for the cabin on google maps and believed I had found it on. From a satellite view, the cabin sits on the edge of a vast area of open land and wilderness. So fitting, as Whitley and Anne sat on their own precipice of a great, vast unknown, blessed to be brave enough to face it and determined to engage with it. It saddened me to learn they had to leave all those years ago. I thought the communion experience was to be over. Boy was I wrong, thankfully!

  15. Years ago I attempted to find the cabin on google maps and believed I had found it. From the satellite view, it sat on the edge of a vast, open land of wilderness. I found that to be a fitting metaphor, for the cabin served as a gateway to the great unknown of the visitor experience. We should all be grateful that there was a place for Whitley’s and Anne’s bravery to be challenged and their determination to engage with the visitors met. When I had first heard that they were leaving the cabin, I was saddened, thinking the visitor experience was over. Boy was I wrong, thankfully!

  16. Thank you for sharing such a profound and intimate experience with us. The bond between you and that cabin, and the land beneath and surrounding it, must have been strong indeed. If it were possible, I’m sure that many of us, me included, would build you a new cabin so that you could better continue to explore the frontier of the human experience as you have all these years. I’ve had to endure the untimely loss of my childhood home. It was a sacred place to me, and I have (and continue) to struggle to make peace with my memories and the great sense of loss that resulted from being ripped from a place that seems literally to be a part of you. I’m very glad that you have had this opportunity to return and make peace.

  17. Thank you so much for sharing that with us Whitley! It’s as if you took us along with you on that return trip to the cabin. What a gift that the new owners have given you – the opportunity to return and reflect. Your healing of past sorrows has also helped us heal and forgive our own regrets of ‘what if’s’ You and Anne have and still are teaching this world so much – and helping those of us who are ‘contactees’ to learn and understand our own journeys. THANK YOU AGAIN!!! Diane from MA

  18. “the acceptance of the hidden into the known.”
    Thank you for sharing this, Whitley, and I’m glad you were able to go back and find some way to move forward with it.
    With love and respect… Have Joy…

  19. I am amazed by your strength Whitley. That you keep moving forward no matter how painful it may be.
    Wishing you much Joy !and Blessings. Your truly deserve it.
    Thank you for your honesty and openness through this journey and know that you have helped so many.

    (((Hugs)))

  20. Author

    Don’t forget the the entire species is going to have to be just as tough as this thing unfolds. “A new world if you can take it.”

    1. I feel so glad that you found the cabin has kind , compassionate , generous people who now are the custodians of all it’s mystery .
      Whitley , you must have gained much comfort from their empathy and understanding.
      I came here as soon as I heard about the eruption of conflict in Ukraine.
      I have a deep foreboding , this is worse than the cold war , worse than the Cuban missile crisis , a worse menace to humanity than anything faced in my lifetime .
      I can only look to love and light with hope .
      Thankyou for being you Whitley , for enduring and not hiding or being silent in the face of those who disbelieve.

    2. wow- I was looking again for the sensing exercise and I found your story-I, too had a similar experience with our big, family home in Arkansas. Catastrophic illness forced my family to Arizona. I couldn’t go-emotionally- and went to Little Rock for a few years of hanging and UALR- I was 17. After a year I returned to Jonesboro and stood before our home- which went with our furnishings. My antique furniture belonging to my Great Aunt Augusta was accidentally included. I went up to the wonderful, beautiful house and knocked on the door and I was shocked at who it was- but they were in our church-and I said” I was really hoping that they were enjoying our house” and the snotty woman said: we don’t consider it your house” – I could barely contain the tears as they showed me around and the changes they made and I left so sad and hurt- I called my parents and cried to my Father-three days later we had a tornado and well- it devastated that home- but not some of OUR belongings which were stored in a front enclosed balcony space- and he said to my DAD” Warren- YOUR HOUSE is totaled” – they were leasing this house from us. This my Father relayed to me. We got insurance- they purchased the ruins and rebuilt- I never forgot that stabbing pain and I am so glad that you were blessed with fine persons to inherit your home in your financial downturn- I know that somehow it was part of your plan to move on. Good share.

  21. What a powerful and cathartic experience. Sometimes the ghosts of the past can be wonderful teachers. Thank you Whitley for sharing. I wonder if your visit to the cabin will awaken the teachers that once inhabited the land? Hopefully you can keep in steady contact with the new owners. They seem like wonderful souls. -J

  22. Thankyou Mr. Strieber. For your books and your Dreamland podcasts. Thay seem to fill a need in me. I re-read Communion and Transformation recently and am a new subscriber to your website. I grew up on military bases here in Canada and overseas, in the 1960s and ’70s. I first read your ‘close encounter’ books in the ’80s when they came out. I’ve seen ufo/uap(s) on two occasions, the first in August 1985. And was fortunate to be able to photograph and video record the most recent one in early March of 2021. We are living in a period of extreme upheaval and turmoil these past few years. How fortunate it is to hear your interviews, and read your journal entries, (as I lay here at 3:30am), all these years later. Sincerely Cam Folk

  23. I don’t know what it means, if anything, but I told my partner a few days ago ( I believe it was Monday, the 21st) that I could feel an important shift occurring in the timeline. Maybe a major ‘split’ in the timeline is a better way to put it.
    Stranger still, and I’m sure it’s just a fluke, I filed my income tax on the 21st….my refund from IRS hit my account on Friday the 25th. What!??!! 😮

    All last week was just strange for us, and I won’t go into all the ‘stuff’, including the invasion of Ukraine, but…I do think it’s more than interesting that Whitley visited the cabin, and mentions his trip to San Antonio to visit with family. Family is what it’s about.

    On the evening news, it was mentioned that the U.S. was picking up ‘chatter’ from the invading Russian forces. One very telling one was how one Russian soldier was ‘confused’ about who to shoot, because “They look just like us.”

  24. Author

    I had an astrology reading with Ray Grasse late last year. He said that Feb. 22 through April would be an important time in my life. On Feb. 22, I returned to the cabin.

    Judging from your comment, it might be an important time in many lives.

    I’ll have Ray back on Dreamland soon!

  25. Thank you for this.

    I sincerely hope we can take it. Folks here are doing what they can, and I hope that is helping on some level.

    And I’m not sure I would have had the strength to go back and do what you did. Kudos.

  26. thank you so much for your many gifts to us Whitley. Cannot wait for the rest of this story.

  27. “The living descendants of the Northern peoples are groping in universal darkness. Their mother mourns. A dark occasion forbade when weakness in high places will revive a high cost of living; an interval of mistakes in high places; an interval fit for distressing events.” – The Andraesson Affair

  28. Best to let depth of focus settle and leave it at that for now. It’ll come.

    Peace.

  29. I have followed you for decades now Whitley. I have thought in the past year that I should write you a long letter about my observations of those willing to do this work, despite the ridicule you undeservedly are subjected to. So I will. Thanks for always trying to do your work more out of love than our of fear, it is the direction of the future of humanity, if indeed we actually HAVE a future!

  30. Whitley, I am happy for you. Being able to visit the place of so many memories and be at peace is a gift not all are given. Interesting that this morning I spoke with my older brother about our childhood home and time there. There was much love and joy when I lived there. Though the time before we moved was filled with danger/fear, i still loved being there for all it gave me as a child. When I returned fairly recently, the gift was changed… not the house, the neighborhood. I was not sad. It was the final piece to “let go” and was good for me. I think we all have places, people, and times – which gift us with opportunity to return. And bless us by helping us let go.
    Perhaps it is too simple, but I wish Mr, Putin could let go of the past, and find true joy and love “in being.”

  31. Thank you for this beautifully moving essay. I listened to Dreamland today and you shared messages from Anne. I thought Anne’s messages were what I needed to hear today. It seems that today’s visit to Unknown Country was a double dose of profundity for me. I need to set some burdens down and say goodbye to what was in my life. Seeing you today on the video-cast you appear as a man unburdened. Thank you for continuing to model a thoughtful, honest, beautifully human way forward.

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