The Ether Ship Mystery
Lawrence Elliott, "Flying Saucers: Myth or Menace?" (Coronet Magazine, Nov. 1952)
In the aftermath of the Second World War there began a flurry of news reports on the flying saucers, and claims were being made by thousands around the world, creating a wave of public interest in Ufology. While most true believers speculated they were metallic space-craft from other worlds in our solar system (or beyond from other stars), there was another current of thought: that these craft were not from outer space, as we understand it, but from interdimensional space.
Among the first to propose this explanation of the U.F.O. was Meade Layne, the founder and director of a spiritualist organisation called Borderland Sciences. His first mimeographs on the subject explained that, contrary to the general view, these unusual craft were constructed and piloted by entities from a strange vibratory space interpenetrating our world (and extending out to the Moon, Venus, and other planets) called Etheria, and that medium Mark Probert had made psychic contact with them. According to Layne, in his "The Ether Ship Mystery and Its Solution" mimeograph: "The craft are made in Etheria, and Etheria is in and around all visible objects. It is also the home and motherland of our plane, all the objects we see about us derive from that source, and our own bodies also." 
"Next they will be telling me that it was just a plate of biscuits."
Meade Layne, dismissing claims that Kareeta was a DC-4 airliner 
On the evening of October 9, 1946, while watching a meteor shower from the top floor of his San Diego apartment building, Mark Probert saw his first UFO. The observed craft was, he reported to Layne soon after the encounter, "about the size of an extremely large plane, and [carrying] two reddish lights. At first it was moving with extraordinary speed, faster than any plane. I saw it twice. The second time it crossed the face of the moon, and the flapping of its wings was plainly visible. The whole object seemed somewhat luminious."
Soon after the sighting, Layne and Probert sat down to make inquiries into the matter with Probert's psychic contacts. These "controls", through Probert, reported to those gathered at the seance that the craft was "built of balsa wood with a covering of alloy. It navigated through space by use of a 'gravity screen'. In this atmosphere it used wings which were flapped by small, powerful electric motors."
The craft was, the controls said, called Kareeta, and it would return in one year; the occupants came in peace.
The Inner Circle, or Kethra E'Da (Teachers of Light)
"I know I should not be sticking my neck out by talking so much about those saucers, as you call them, at least until I have investigated more fully. But they are not craft constructed on your planet, nor is it necessary to assume that they came from any other planet. It seems impossible to get it through the heads of you people, that objects can pass from an etheric to a dense level of matter, and will then appear to materialize there. Then they may disappear by dematerializing – returning to an etheric condition."
The primary source for Layne's interpretation of the flying saucers would continue to be the Probert controls, a collective of channelled intelligences, led by E Yada Di Shi'ite, which called themselves the Inner Circle. By Probert's own accounting, and that of his wife Irene Probert, he had been selected as the vessel through which the assorted personalities that formed the membership of the Inner Circle Kethra E'Da (Teachers of Light, in the Yu language of the Yada) would speak to the world, and his earliest controlled sittings were orchestrated by Layne, who took notes and guided exchanges. At first only channelling an American called Martin Lattimore Lingford, Probert eventually became the voice for a dynamic cast of ghosties, including Maharaja Natcha Tramalaki, Ali Ben Casi, Kay Ting, Lo Sun Yat, Lao-Tse, Ramon Natalli, Arakashi, Sukoto Nikkioi, Alfred Luntz, Sister Theresa Vandenberg, Thomas Carlyle, Rama Kaloha, Thomas Edison, and, of course, the Yada himself.
Although claiming awareness of the Ether Ship phenomena, the Inner Circle presented themselves as an astral body of discarnate intelligences, and made no claim of responsibility for the construction or piloting of the mystery craft, which they asserted were of Etherian origin.
"This Cloud-Cuckoo-Land of Etheria"
"We must not harbor the illusion that the four etheric states are ghostly and unsubstantial. They are a good deal more substantial than our so‐called dense world, and it is We who're the ghosts of the Etheric realm. "
[...to be continued]
- Project ETHERIA, borderlandsciences.org, https://borderlandsciences.org/project/etheria — mimeographs, articles, letters, press clippings related to the Ether Ship Mystery of the BSRA
- KOOK KOMIX PRESENTS: Mr. Probert in Etherland, Kook Komix, http://comic.juanochoa.co/2013/mister-probert-in-etherland/ — our comic strip about Mark Probert & his Etherian friends
- Meade Layne, et al., "The Ether Ship Mystery and Its Solution" (1950)
- Quoted in the Page 8-A story "Parapsychologist Impatiently Repeats, 'Twas Space Ship in Sky" of the Friday, October 18, 1946 edition of the San Diego Union
- Quoted by Meade Layne in BSRA Round Robin article "Welcome, Kareeta!" (Vol. 2, No. 10, October 1946)
- Quoted by Meade Layne in BSRA Round Robin article "Fly, Lokas, Fly!" (Vol. 3, No. 6, July – August 1947)
- Probert, Mark; Inner Circle (1963), The Magic Bag: A Manuscript Dictated Clairaudiently to Mark Probert by Members of the Inner Circle, http://amzn.to/13N4OsQ