Eduard Albert Meier
|Occupation||Cult leader & Author|
|Organization||Freie Interessengemeinschaft für Grenz- und Geisteswissenschaften und Ufologiestudien (Free Community of Interests for the Border and Spiritual Sciences and Ufological Studies) (FIGU)|
|Known for||Contactee/UFO religion|
Eduard Albert Meier, commonly nicknamed "Billy", is the founder of a UFO religion called the "Freie Interessengemeinschaft für Grenz- und Geisteswissenschaften und Ufologiestudien" (Free Community of Interests for the Border and Spiritual Sciences and Ufological Studies) and alleged contactee whose UFO photographs are claimed to show alien spacecraft. Meier claims to be in regular contact with extraterrestrial beings he calls the Plejaren. He also presented other material during the 1970s such as metal samples, sound recordings and film footage. Meier claims to be the seventh reincarnation after six prophets common to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam: Enoch, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Immanuel (Jesus), and Mohammed.
Meier has been widely characterized as a fraud by skeptics and ufologists, who suggest that he used models to hoax photos claimed to show alien spacecraft. Meier's prophecies repeatedly blame Jews (which he refers to as gypsies) for future atrocities.
Born in the town of Bülach in the Zürcher Unterland, Meier joined the French Foreign Legion in his teens, but says he soon left and returned home. In 1965, he lost his left arm in a bus accident in Turkey. Some time later, he met and married a Greek woman, Kalliope Zafiriou, with whom he had three children. The nickname "Billy" came by way of an American friend who thought Meier's cowboy style of dress reminded her of "Billy the Kid." This anecdote was told by Meier in an interview with Bob Zanotti of Swiss Radio International in June, 1982.
Alleged extraterrestrial contacts
Meier claims his extraterrestrial encounters began in 1942, at the age of five, when he met an elderly Plejaren man named "Sfath". After Sfath's death in 1953, Meier said, he began communicating with an extraterrestrial woman (though not a Plejaren) called "Asket". All contacts ceased in 1964, he said, then resumed on January 28, 1975, when he met "Semjase", the granddaughter of Sfath, and shortly thereafter another Plejaren man called "Ptaah". Other extraterrestrials have since allegedly joined the dialog as well.
Meier founded a non-profit, tax-paying organization based on his alleged contacts with Semjase, called the "Freie Interessengemeinschaft für Grenz- und Geisteswissenschaften und Ufologiestudien" (Free Community of Interests for the Border and Spiritual Sciences and Ufological Studies) in the late 1970s and established his "Semjase Silver Star Center". The organization's headquarters is in Switzerland.
Meier's photographs and films are claimed by him to show alien spacecraft floating above the Swiss countryside. He calls the alleged spaceships "beamships" from Plejaren. According to Meier, the Plejaren gave him permission to photograph and film their beamships so that he could produce evidence of their extraterrestrial visitations. Some of Meier's photos are claimed by him to show prehistoric Earth scenes, extraterrestrials, and celestial objects from an alleged non-Earthly vantage point. Meier's claims are widely characterized as fraudulent by scientists, skeptics, and most ufologists, who say that his photographs and films are hoaxes.
In 1997, Meier's ex-wife, Kalliope, told interviewers that his photos were of spaceship models he crafted with items like trash can lids, carpet tacks and other household objects, and that the stories he told of his adventures with the aliens were similarly fictitious. She also said that photos of purported extraterrestrial women "Asket" and "Nera" were really photos of Michelle DellaFave and Susan Lund, members of the singing and dancing troupe The Golddiggers. It was later confirmed that the women in the photographs were members of The Golddiggers performing on The Dean Martin Show.
- Donald R. Prothero; Timothy D. Callahan (2 August 2017). UFOs, Chemtrails, and Aliens: What Science Says. Indiana University Press. pp. 149–. ISBN 978-0-253-02706-1.
- Hans Georg Lanzendorfer. "Clarification of a Defamatory Claim". TheyFly.com. Retrieved 12 February 2018.
- James R. Lewis (2002). The Encyclopedia of Cults, Sects, and New Religions. Prometheus Books, Publishers. pp. 653–. ISBN 978-1-61592-738-8.
- Paul Kurtz. Skepticism and Humanism: The New Paradigm. Transaction Publishers. pp. 57–. ISBN 978-1-4128-3411-7.
- Joe Nickell (29 September 2010). Camera Clues: A Handbook for Photographic Investigation. University Press of Kentucky. pp. 165–. ISBN 978-0-8131-3828-2.
- Catherine L. Albanese (1 December 2006). A Republic of Mind and Spirit: A Cultural History of American Metaphysical Religion. Yale University Press. pp. 502–. ISBN 0-300-13477-0.
- Eduard Gugenberger: Esoterische Ufologie. In: Helmut Reinalter (Hrsg.): Handbuch der Verschwörungstheorien. Salier Verlag, Leipzig 2018, S. 104 f.
- Zanotti, Bob (Interviewer) (June 1982). Billy Meier – UFO Contactee. Switzerland in Sound (Audio recording). Biglen, Switzerland: Bob Zanotti. Event occurs at 0:17:35. Archived from the original (MP3) on February 2, 2016. Retrieved October 12, 2013.
- "Portraits der Kontaktpersonen". FIGU Switzerland. Schmidrüti, Switzerland: FIGU. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
- George D. Chryssides. Historical Dictionary of New Religious Movements. Rowman & Littlefield; 2012. ISBN 978-0-8108-6194-7. p. 312–.
- J. Gordon Melton (1996). The Encyclopedia of American Religions. Gale Research. ISBN 978-0-8103-7714-1.
- Gregory L. Reece (20 August 2007). UFO Religion: Inside Flying Saucer Cults and Culture. I.B.Tauris. pp. 147–. ISBN 978-0-85771-763-4.
- Olav Hammer (1 September 2003). Claiming Knowledge: Strategies of Epistemology from Theosophy to the New Age. BRILL. pp. 391–. ISBN 90-04-13638-X.
- "Strahlschiffe (UFOs)". FIGU Switzerland. Schmidrüti, Switzerland: FIGU. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
- Aaron John Gulyas. Extraterrestrials and the American Zeitgeist: Alien Contact Tales Since the 1950s. McFarland; 6 May 2013. ISBN 978-0-7864-7116-4. p. 138–.
- Nickell, Joe (March–April 1996). "Spaceships of the Pleiades: The Billy Meier Story". Skeptical Inquirer (Book review). Amherst, New York: Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal. 20 (2): 48–49. ISSN 0194-6730.
- "Photo Comparison". Independent Investigations Group (IIG). Hollywood, California: Center for Inquiry-Los Angeles. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
- Clingbine, Dr Graham (30 October 2015). Disclosure: The Future is Now. Troubador. p. 341.
- Outer Space Pictures – Asket-Nera-Semjase – Summary billymeieruforesearch.com, retrieved March 20, 2017.