Remote Viewing with Melvin C. Riley
Written By: Cassandra Frost
His first conference presentation was last May at Lyn Buchanan’s CRV Conference in Clearwater, Florida. Riley’s first ever radio appearance was on Jeff Rense’s June 10, 2002 show, a week before he spoke at the International Remote Viewing Association’s (IRVA) Conference on ‘’Remote Viewing’ and the American Indian: An Historical Overview’.
He’s a major player in ‘Psi Spies’ and ‘Alien Agenda’ by Jim Marrs. ‘‘Remote Viewers: the Secret History of America’s Psychic Spies’ by Jim Schnabel begins with Mel Riley waking up and heading off to a workday at the Army’s remote viewing unit. A 1995 Discovery Channel show entitled ‘The Real X-Files’ begins and ends with shots of Riley.
I’ve heard expert RVers say that they aren’t worthy to be in the same room when his name is uttered. His videos are sought out and sell out at conferences. He’s respected and looked up to as one of the best remote viewers in the world.
But unlike many of the other viewers, Riley doesn’t have a web page, a training course or a book. And he’s shied away from the media. Until now.
Mel Riley is at a place in his life where it’s time for him to tell his story.
‘I’m not getting any younger,’ he says in his deep, gravelly voice.
His story is different from the other Stargate vets. Way different.
Riley was born with acute powers of observation. He learned to survive in the woods by relying on his instincts. He was a natural to serve as an intuitive soldier. Today, his approach to life is one of a peaceful warrior.
Riley has done his best to live his life according to the dictates of his own innate brand of North American Indian spirituality rather Western Religion or Eastern Philosophy.
‘When I was little, my Grandma would humor me.’ he remembered. ‘I was convinced I was an Indian. I’d go ask my Mom about it and she’d say ‘Go ask your Grandmother.’ I’d go to her and she’d encourage and egg me on.’
‘During the summer when I was a kid, I’d leave out the door and be gone for weeks in the Wisconsin woods, living off the land,’ Riley said ‘My Mother never had to worry because she knew I’d be ok..’
Like other intuitives, he grew up feeling different from everyone else around him. Out of place. He did, however, feel at home in the woods.
He grew up among and learned to hunt with the Winnebago Indians. He felt comfortable as he did things like watching and learning how to weave baskets and how to bead while sitting at the feet of Ruth Cloud, a full-blooded Winnebago Indian.
Riley’s life today is busy with taking part in local Native American ceremonies and going to Pow Wows as a member of the Mohican Veterans’ Honor guard.
As a charter member of the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) which can be found at:
his name will be etched into the Wall of Honor, located at the entrance to the new museum when it is completed on the Mall in Washington, D.C in 2004.
As it nears completion, the following will be placed into the Wall of Honor, of the Mohican Nation Veteran’s Memorial, located on the Stockbridge-Munsee Indian Reservation near Bowler, Wisconsin.
Name: Melvin Riley
Branch of Service: US Army
Dates of Service: 1969-1990
Unit Served With: Stargate
Veterans Organization: Mohican Veteran
He’s experienced a kind of reverse discrimination in the Indian world by those who don’t like white people very much. He’s a brother to some, the enemy or a wanna-be to others. From time to time he’ll be challenged or called out at a Pow Wow for wearing certain traditional garb.
‘It’s kind of hard to explain,’ he begins. ‘I just conduct my life according to what I feel, what I know is right. It just so happens that these dictates are the same as Native Americans.’
‘I don’t know why and I don’t lose sleep over it,’ he continued. ‘I accept it. Life is too short to sit around and analyze things to death.’
Riley grew up dirt poor across from the foundry in Racine, Wisconsin. ‘I thought I was immortal and was crazy in my youth,’ he confessed. ‘It was like I had a death wish. I volunteered for every dangerous thing that came along.’
He started parachuting when he was 17. ‘I needed my Mom to sign a permission slip,’ he remembered. ‘The first time I jumped out, I was hooked.’
Riley also loves to fly. Like a bat out of hell.
In July, 1969, after being drafted, he was put on a bus for what he thought was only a medical exam, after which he’d be put on a bus to head back home and wait for the results. Instead, after his physical, he was put on an airplane and sent to Ft. Campbell, Kentucky for boot camp. An intelligence recruiter offered Riley photo-interpreter training in exchange for a three year obligation.
‘After Advanced Individual Training for imagery interpretation, 96D, I signed my dream sheet ‘Vietnam, Vietnam, Vietnam but was sent straight to Germany,’ Riley remembered.
It was his job to look out of a plane as it flew near enemy territory in the Cold War, alert the photographer where and when to shoot pictures and deploy intelligence gathering equipment. Later, he’d analyze the photos on a light table for anything unusual. He was hyper accurate as an aerial observer. He seemed to know where to direct the cameras
In 1976, after a six year tour in Wiesbaden Germany, he was transferred to Ft. Meade to be part of the Operations Security Group or OPSEC. One day, Riley was chatting with a friend who worked down the hall in another unit called Systems Exploitation Department. He noticed books on PSI, out of body experiences and ESP. His friend said that the Soviets were using psychic spies.
Potential psychic spy candidates were identified and Riley found himself in the first round of interviews and in 1978, after nearly a decade of active duty, he was chosen as one of six out of a pool of 3000 interviewees for the Army’s psychic spy program. Shortly thereafter, he began viewing full time.
In the program’s beginning, Riley would go through mental exercises to get into his ‘zone’, a place where he had an open mental channel to receive the information he was tasked with obtaining. He’d lie on a couch in a dark room in the condemned ‘Gondola Wish’ headquarters at Fort Meade, Maryland, hear something like ‘The target is an object’ and begin to tell his monitor what he perceived.
After years of spying scandals, in October, 1977, two hundred CIA case officers were fired, a huge cut to the nation’s human intelligence gathering. Riley’s fearless spirit and sense of teamwork led him making significant contributions to the development of PSI-INT or Psi based intelligence.
In the summer of 1986, after being away for five years, Riley found himself back at the unit. Upon his return, he was trained in Coordinate Remote Viewing which provided an organized way to record his RV data.
After retiring from active duty, Riley worked his way up from Museum Assistant, to Curator, to Director of the New London Public Museum in New London, Wisconsin where he specialized in Native American Studies.
Riley began to share his story and the details of a life altering vision during his June 10 appearance was on the Jeff Rense show.
Show archive is at:
It went something like this.
Rense: Was there any thing interesting about your childhood that sort of nudged you in the direction of PSI and this kind of ability you have?
Riley: I’ve always been strange.
Rense: What was it that made you strange?
Riley: My earliest memory of being strange was when my Mother found me outside, looking up at the sky, talking to myself. She would tell me that I was always walking around outside, looking up into the sky and talking to myself. One day she asked me ‘Who are you talking to? And I looked up and pointed up to the sky and said ‘The guys in the airplane.’ She just shook her head and said ‘ok’’.
This is back in the 40’s and 50’s. Another incident I recall was back in third grade. I think the teacher was talking about war and this was just after the Second World War. I started recounting some tales and they were as real to me as anything else. I was describing (to the class) how
I had my arm blown off, was bleeding to death and losing consciousness.
I must have been remote viewing. The teacher got quite upset, accused me of being an outright liar and called my Mother. I realized that maybe I’d better not share those things in public. I learned early on to be close lipped about my experiences.
Rense: What kinds of things did you do? How did PSI manifest itself in your life?
Riley: I really didn’t think much of it, it was no big deal. I knew I was different. When I was about 12, I had an experience, a vision, a bilocation experience I remember very vividly to this day. I was out in the woods, doing my thing. I spent a lot of time in the woods and it was an early summer day. I was out there all alone, looking into a deep ravine and I could smell a campfire, I smelled smoke. I heard a dog barking, which was unusual, because there were no dogs around. I turned around to look and in this open area, is this Indian village, bark lodges not tee pees, people running around and playing. It’s like I slipped in time. I call it bilocating.
It didn’t last very long and it started dissolving and as it did, there was this older, tall fellow who waved at me like I was there all the time. Things turned back to normal. That experience stayed with me.
Rense: How did the RV program change from when you went away and came back?
Riley: When I left there in ’81, we were still flying by the seat of our pants. Using the old SRI protocol, more in lines with ERV (Extended Remote Viewing) today where you kind of meditate and get into a calm state and you have a monitor who asks you questions and you detach and go out and get the information and bring it back. When I came back, a whole new technology developed around remote viewing and as we all know that was through the efforts of Ingo Swann at SRI. It was a way to take RV and make it more reliable by putting it in a structure. To this day I use both types of remote viewing. CRV (Coordinate Remote Viewing) allows a place to put all your data. That allowed you to get the information to bring it back in a more usable form rather than just impressions.
In CRV, you don’t need to get into an altered state. The information will come on its own. Originally that stood for coordinate remote viewing for latitude and longitude. The scientists had a problem with that; well perhaps that individual had memorized every latitude and longitude on the planet. SRI decided to put together a random set of numbers and the viewer still came up with the proper location.
This is just my opinion, but all forms of remote viewing are the same. Like all doors to the same house.’
Later the same week after being on Rense’s show, Riley spoke at the IRVA conference.
‘I’m not a shaman or a medicine man,’ he said at the beginning of his presentation, ’Remote Viewing’ and the American Indian: an Historical Overview.
Riley introduced his sources, the data and examples which included early notes from explorer’s and Jesuit encounters with the Native Americans.
His notes showed that the Native Americans have been using RV for thousands of years without label or analysis. ‘The way that the Indians relied on their visions and dreams isn’t clear across the board,’ he explained. ‘Not all tribes believed the same way.’
He touched on the differences between people in a tribe who are psychic or who can RV.
‘The Shamans were those who had contact with other beings, those who have had more psychic experiences,’ he said. ‘The Shaman may learn from people as well as beings other than human. They were/are special individuals who could warn the people of danger as well as see things from a distance like locating lost objects and where to find game.’
“You don’t hold that status unless you can produce,’ he clarified ‘for the tribes survival often depended on the shaman’s advise.’
Riley then discussed remote viewing and remote influencing in terms of ‘How the Indians made magic’.
’’The Indian How Book’ by Arthur C. Parker tells how the Indians made a kind of magic like hypnotism,’ he said. ’How a shaman could talk to a crowd and make them see strange things.’
‘Paint pictures on the inside of their skulls,’ he recited from the book. ‘Wear their eyes out so they will look inward to see the image you placed there. The subject must wish to see, they must be interested to obey.’
‘How did the Indians talk to animals?’ Riley was asked.
‘The animals can catch what we think if we paint a picture inside their head,’ he answered.
‘The Indians relied on visions and dreams and in preparation to receive them,’ he went on. ‘Fasting and vision ceremonies such as the Sun Dance were performed.’
According to Riley, this sacred ceremony, the Sun Dance, is held to pray for the renewal of the people and the earth, to give thanks, to fulfill a vow, to pray for fertility and plenty, to protect the people from danger or illness and for other spiritual purposes. It was conducted mainly among the buffalo hunting groups of the plains region.
Riley used Sitting Bull as an example of this.
‘He was not a chief. He was a Holy man,’ he explained. ‘He was present at the Battle of Little Big Horn but was healing from two days of Sun Dancing and recovering from a flesh sacrifice for his people, the Lakota Sioux, after having 100 squares of flesh cut from his arms. During the ceremony, he received the vision of many upside down soldiers falling into the Indian camp. The rest is history.’
Sacrifice and suffering are important themes as one seeks Native American wisdom and Riley’s life is no exception.
Five years ago he dropped dead in his living room from a heart attack and later had triple by-pass surgery.
He is also a recovering alcoholic.
‘I was dying, killing myself,’ he admitted. ‘I was maintenance alcoholic. I had to drink a quart of vodka a day just to keep from shaking apart.’
Riley feels he’s been given a second chance at things and is now seriously considering writing his book and offering advanced RV training.
Like he said, he’s not getting any younger.
How does he feel about his remote viewing abilities today?
‘Just give me the coordinates,’ he said.
And what is the Universe according to Mel Riley?
‘First,’ he explained, ‘one needs to learn to accept things as they are because that is how it is. Don’t label and analyze things to death, get on with your life and live the time you have left.’
‘Second, we also need to embrace a more tribal concept of taking care of our family and extended family,’ he suggested. ’A clan isn’t necessarily blood and we need to learn to meet each other’s needs as a family would.’
‘And we need to walk in balance with the worlds within as well as outside of ourselves,’ he advised. ‘Without this, we can’t be happy.’
Today, Mel Riley is at peace with himself as he tries to walk in balance between his worlds. And for a man like him, that’s one of the most important things in his life.