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When Ringing in the Ears is more than Tinnitus

Alien Telapathy

In 1993 I traveled into the Volcanic Zone near Mexico City as part of a CSETI UFO investigation. While there I had a number of remarkable sightings. One night I witnessed a large silent triangular craft that signaled at our team. On another occasion in broad daylight at close range I saw a metallic disc with rectangular windows as it flew past three members of our contact team. 

When Ringing in the Ears is More than Tinnitus.
Joseph Burkes MD  “Each object produces a unique signature”


On returning to Los Angeles I was very excited about what I had experienced in Mexico. I was eager to share with anyone who might be willing to listen. During the weeks after getting back to the States I had several different kinds of “high strangeness“ experiences. I had two personal UFO sightings in broad daylight. In addition during contact work in the Malibu Hills with my LA CSETI team, an anomalous sound tracked through our research site. I also started experiencing a recurring ringing in the ears that seemed to represent some kind of communication.


Tinnitus, or ringing in the ears is a common complaint associated with a wide range of ear disorders. Over the years I had occasionally experienced tinnitus, usually after hearing a very loud noise. The ringing never was very strong nor did it last long. In the clinic I had a small number of elderly patients that complained of tinnitus. Usually they had degenerative conditions of the inner ear.

In my four decades of internal medicine practice I have never encountered a person who told me that the ringing was brought on by a specific topic of discussion. As outrageous as it may seem, this is what happened to me when I returned from the Mexico. I actually heard a stereotypical ringing when talking about UFOs. By sharing this report I imagine that I join other UFO witnesses that have learned from personal experience an important aspect of how UFO intelligence communicates. And yet we have absolutely no proof that any communication has actually occurred.


As part of my duties as a Kaiser ER physician, I had the opportunity to work several shifts per month at our company’s corporate office. It was kind of a treat to get away from the ambulance area and do semi-administrative work.

The Case Coordination Center was an office in Pasadena that received phone calls from hospitals all over Southern California. If one of our Kaiser patients presented at an outside ER, one that was not part of our health plan, the non-Kaiser doctors were required to call us at the Pasadena office to discuss the case. If the patients were stable, we transferred them to our Kaiser medical facilities. It was all done over the phone. This job was a nice break from the stressful conditions of direct patient care in the ER. The nurses and clerical staff in the Pasadena office were very friendly. Another perk was that our corporate HQ had a cafeteria where the food was far superior to the usual hospital fare I got at my Kaiser ER job.


When there were no calls coming in I had a chance to chat with my co-workers about what had happened in Mexico. To my utter surprise each time I spoke about UFOs I noticed a strange ringing in my ears. It was not like the tinnitus that I had experienced after noise exposure. Instead of being high pitched this anomalous ringing sound was low in pitch and very loud at first. After a few seconds however the volume dropped off considerably. Within a minute the ringing completely disappeared, only to recur immediately after I started up another conversation about flying saucers. In the course of a 24-hour shift I heard the stereotypical tinnitus about a dozen times, but never when speaking about any other subject.


I felt perfectly fine while this was taking place and was not suffering from any symptoms of ear pathology. There was no loss of hearing, no ear pain and no dizziness. According to my conventional medical training, tinnitus is a symptom linked to specific disease process. It is not supposed to occur with conversations about any particular subject nor be triggered by any kind of specific mental activity. Ringing in the ears is not considered by medical science to be some kind of auditory hallucination.

I had just spent a week travelling to Mexico and participating in an intense contact program. On several occasions I had been just a few hundred feet from what we believed were "Alien" ET spacecraft. During our contact work we had spent long hours in meditation in order to facilitate a kind of telepathic communication with UFO intelligence. Could the powerful consciousness link that we had established during fieldwork still be intact on my return to the States? Was my tinnitus serving as a kind of primitive communication between me and an unseen non-human intelligence?


From the UFO literature I knew that I was not the first flying saucer experiencer to describe tinnitus as being associated with close encounters. The ringing in my ears however was bizarrely associated with my talking about UFOs Fortunately this was not particularly bothersome. There was actually a kind of playful quality to the experience. In my opinion it was certainly less threatening than full blown mind-to-mind communication of a “voice in the head.” Perhaps a little ringing was the extent of what I was deemed “able to handle” by UFO intelligence.

Direct telepathic communication, another’s voice in one’s head I suppose can be quite intrusive. As it is considered to be a symptom of schizophrenia, I imagine that most contact experiencers would not want to openly discuss it. Accusations of their being insane would likely ensue.


My guess is that if an individual were selected by UFO intelligence to have direct telepathic communication, then a program of careful preparation would be required. I have met a few people who have claimed to have, or I strongly suspected that they had, direct telepathic communication with non-human intelligence. In each of these rare individuals there was evidence from their personal histories that they had indeed received an extensive program of psychic and spiritual training to allow them to deal with such high strangeness.

In my particular case after just a few weeks, the episodes of tinnitus linked to speaking about the UFO subject became less frequent and eventually stopped completely. Over the next few years only on very rare occasions did I hear ringing and it did not seem to have any particular communication significance. As I recall the symptom was pretty much absent for several years when it came back in a strikingly comical fashion.


During the 1980s I was an activist in the group Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR). We carried out an educational campaign about the dangers the nuclear arms race. Our physicians’ peace organization gave lectures about what would be the devastating effects of H-bomb explosions on American and Soviet cities if a nuclear war occurred. PSR members became familiar with the various types of delivery systems for atomic weapons. These included submarines, jet-bombers and land-based missiles.

Several years after I returned from the Volcanic Zone I watched with great interest a special documentary. For the first time in history a film crew had been allowed inside a US atomic submarine equipped with nuclear missiles. The reporter interviewed one sonar specialist about the highly sophisticated equipment on board.

I learned that by using advanced sonar any object under the water could be detected and identified with great accuracy. I remember snuggling in bed, watching the program in which a crewman said that each type of vessel, each object produces a unique signature. Suddenly out of nowhere a loud low-pitched ringing sounded in my right ear. It lasted for just a few seconds, then decreased in volume and disappeared.

Once again the consciousness link was apparently in evidence. My old “friend” had returned and at the best possible moment for didactic purposes. It was so astounding, so outrageously funny that I threw off the covers, sat up in bed and laughed out loud.

Ongoing consciousness/mind based communications appears to be a regular part of the contact experience. I guessed that my old one-liner was still true. “Once you join the contact underground you will never be lonely again.”

About the author: Dr Burkes volunteered as a Working Group Coordinator for the CE-5 Initiative from 1992 till 1998 when he left CSETI. He has continued to study the flying saucer phenomenon working with MUFON and the Peruvian contact network now called Rahma. He is co-author of “Paths to Contact” edited and published by Jeff Becker. Dr Burkes retired from the Southern California Pemanente Group after thirty years service in 2008. He is a board certified internal medicine physician and is licensed to practice in California.

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