I think the author Mack has made an observation that needs to be followed up. Seiously, when he says"
If we are in fact observing an unknown intelligence, it has proven remarkably adept at insinuating itself into the belief-structure of any given era, comfortably skating the razor's edge of plausibility. It implants itself in our collective unconscious, an abiding trickster that entices us with the possibility of catching up at the same time that it morphs into more fashionable disguises. The phenomenon is a constantly moving goal-post -- and we're largely amnesiac of any duplicity.
Whether we think we see an indigenous nonhuman species in our midst, as in the case of the Celtic faerie faith, or the comings and goings of eccentric aeronauts (the "impossible" airship sightings of the 1800s), we always think what we're viewing is genuine. Then, in a now-recognizable pattern, the performance changes. Since we invariably change alongside it, we fail to note that our visitors have merely upgraded their image to match prevailing notions. Thus, the most widely accepted exotic explanation for apparent alien craft in our skies -- the extraterrestrial hypothesis, with its Westernized nuts-and-bolts trappings -- is likely a facade.
Clearly the various manifestations of strange human like creatures and todays greys and aliens of various types indicates a sub-meme that has gone on for years and that these myths are related, yes, aliens and abductions are modern myths, they fullfill all the conditions and none of the evidence to be myths rather than real world things or events.
We need to look as he says at our need for a fear/love relationship with the "other". In the past, perhaps the viiage folk feared a creature in the dark forest no one had seen. Sories from travellers introduced variations to the myth as it developed over the decades, in some cases, innocent people were murder to demonstrate their evil. The classic was in the days of King James and the appointment of a Witch Finder General, whose job success was measured by the number of convictions or admitions were achieved in a given month and the related hangings, burnings and tortures.
Further, we have nuns in cloisters finding themselves prgnet by some visiting priest would make a convincing claim that an incubus had assaulted her, thus presenting her with a bastard child. Sound better than, "Your eminence, you see, it was like this, father John from Red Hill and me had this private case of lust, and I am thus presented with hischild." Where upon, the priest is interviewed and denice such a slander. Beter to blame some poor innocent incubus.
These types of creatures pop up all over the place and indicate a fear of the unkown, a curiosity about the unkown and a relationship desire for the exotic and different. Perhaps those experiences today with alien abductions and visitations is related to the same fears, love, and curiosity transposed to the emodern world where all Gods creatures have been catalogued, filed and studied, the only place to fear and wander is outerspace.(cue the music from "Forbidden Planet" or "The Day The Earth Stood Still".