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Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA]  |  Therianthropy & Otherkin  |  Therianthropy & Were (Moderators: Merticus, SoulSplat, Eclecta, Maloryn, Zero)  |  11.18.10 - Is Werewolf Culture Dangerous? 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: 11.18.10 - Is Werewolf Culture Dangerous?  (Read 8787 times)
Merticus
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« on: November 18, 2010, 08:13:36 pm »

http://www.werewolves.com/is-werewolf-culture-dangerous/

Is Werewolf Culture Dangerous?
November 18, 2010


From Team Jacob Fans, to the San Antonio “teen Werewolf” culture (claims of teen werewolves also apparently occurred in the media in 2003 from Brisbane Australia), a fascinating side of werewolves is their interpretations by modern culture.

But what does it really mean when claiming to be a werewolf or having a deep fascination for them?

Is it dangerous?

Certainly anything taken to extreme can be dangerous but what about werewolves in particular?

Historically, there has been the occasional serial killer claiming to be a werewolf and many more who like in the infamous witch trials, were unfairly branded werewolves and executed. One theory of the origin of the word werewolf refers to the word Varg which historically meant outlaw or outcast as well as wolf. There have also been tales of outlaws being able to turn into wolves which along with the occasional delusional murderer could form some basis behind at least the continuance of the werewolf phenomena.

Varg was also the name taken by Varg Vikerns a Black Metal Musician who was convicted of murder as well as arson for the killing of fellow Black Metal Musician Euronymous and the burning of several churches . Wolves and werewolves appear to play at least a minor role in Black Metal culture symbolism along with other ancient Norwegian beliefs.

While this connection may appear tenuous, writings about the ideas and beliefs similar to many within the Black Metal music community can also be found on the web pages of the “Werewolf Cathedral”.

Claiming to be “The first True Werewolf Religion and Secret Society” this group’s beliefs appear to be a worrying mix of dark magic practices, pagan beliefs with strong Satanic influences.

It is this type of cultural influence that can lead werewolf fans from a harmless hobby or lifestyle choice to something much worse.

Fortunately unlike the Vampire subculture, I could not find any references to a werewolf obsession turning deadly by otherwise average people. Even the controversial Wolfie Blackheart and her dog skull turned out to be more about an obsession with taxidermy than werewolves. Wolfie was not convicted of any crime and it was declared the dog was already dead when Wolfie took the head.

While the majority of werewolf fans enjoy the movies and trivia and move on, there will always be those with a deeper fascination who wish to identify more closely with the wolf and werewolves.

This could mean a variety of things depending on what is the draw to the werewolf.

But to put a positive turn to this search I would suggest looking at the real wolf for inspiration over movie magic and darker interpretations of werewolf culture as exemplified by the Werewolf Cathedral.

In 1988 a “Wolf Credo” surfaced and has been used and promoted by many wolf enthusiasts and at least one business leadership essay. It has been attributed to Del Goetz for whom I could find no information but the Credo goes like this:

Respect the elders
Teach the young
Cooperate with the pack.

Play when you can
Hunt when you must
Rest in between.

Share your affections
Voice your feelings
Leave your mark.

© Del Goetz


Wolves have always been a fascinating blend of fierce freedom and comforting organization for they are wild creatures who appear to follow a very familiar family oriented social structure. As such they can serve as positive archetype in which to build a modern werewolf culture with very ancient roots.

Given such a long and fascinating history, it is unlikely the werewolf will ever lose its place in human culture aside from the occasional respite after a particularly badly made werewolf movie. However the rise of obsession as seen with vampires turned deadly (i.e “vampire” murderers such as Allen Menzies or Roderick Ferrell) certainly lends the need for caution in the werewolf community.

About the author:
Paul Glendenning is an environmental and animal advocate as well as an aspiring writer whose fascination with werewolves and other creatures of the night may stem from the fact he was born on Halloween.
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RKCoon
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« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2010, 08:47:18 pm »

The single advantage therians have always had over vamps is the simple fact what they believe themselves to be is considered harmless, along with the fact that what they do, generally equally harmless. IE, no need to consume human blood.  Granted, some consider it nothing more than furrydom, while others relate it to native shaman beliefs of spirits in human bodies, but either way, it does tend to be less imposing on mundanes then vamps generally are.  It would also seem to me that therians (personal opinion - werewolf is for RPers) are substantially LESS concerned about being in the public eye than vamps are.
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Automotive Necromancer
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« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2010, 04:33:53 pm »

Too true...Therians are slightly sheltered from the media bashing, as demonstrated in this article...because there are 'bigger badder monsters' than the 'big bad wolf'....

Frankly, if you're going by mythos tho, i would say werewolves are worse...a vampire can control the amount it feeding....but an animal always kills...savagely...hence why mankind was afraid of wolves for so long...sheep weren't the only things on the menu....we were.

The only reason I would see the image of a vampire being more frightening than a werewolf is this....There is no monster greater than mankind.
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« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2010, 07:47:59 pm »

Well, it's only fair--humans have eaten wolves, too, when necessary.
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« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2011, 09:19:31 am »



Frankly, if you're going by mythos tho, i would say werewolves are worse...a vampire can control the amount it feeding....but an animal always kills...savagely...hence why mankind was afraid of wolves for so long...sheep weren't the only things on the menu....we were.

The only reason that wolves attacked people, is when they impose on the wolves territory, attack the wolves mate or pups, and (on rare occations) when there are little to no animals on the food chain lower than them. I found a good site that talks about the wolf attacks.

http://www.wildsentry.org/WolfAttack.html
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« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2011, 04:58:53 pm »



Frankly, if you're going by mythos tho, i would say werewolves are worse...a vampire can control the amount it feeding....but an animal always kills...savagely...hence why mankind was afraid of wolves for so long...sheep weren't the only things on the menu....we were.

The only reason that wolves attacked people, is when they impose on the wolves territory, attack the wolves mate or pups, and (on rare occations) when there are little to no animals on the food chain lower than them. I found a good site that talks about the wolf attacks.

http://www.wildsentry.org/WolfAttack.html

*nods* most animals don't see people as food, until they learn that people are food.
hence why people don't like it when an animal has tasted human blood.

Most animals are either curious or unsure about people and will shy away or observe from a distance. If they feel threatened they may defend themselves, their young, or their territory (i've heard apparently bears see people as a territory threat). Once they learn that people are edible and that they are bigger than us, their fear dissipates.
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Hellflame
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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2011, 12:22:45 am »

Exactly. Like the site said, only curious animals really attack after they get to close.
Never feed them is a big rule because they have no idea what it means to sstay far away after they have been fed. They will stay and look for more food. Also like you said Darklilone, animals have a big territory rule. You invade it you are in trouble.
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Necryn
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« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2011, 09:35:53 am »

Frankly, if you're going by mythos tho, i would say werewolves are worse...a vampire can control the amount it feeding....but an animal always kills...savagely...hence why mankind was afraid of wolves for so long...sheep weren't the only things on the menu....we were. 

I think the point Etheros was trying to make is a vampire *can* feed without killing, while an animal *must* kill in order to feed.  Even humans must kill in order to feed. 

I wouldn't say it is always done savagely, though.  Some predators, such as several large cat species, can kill their prey nearly instantaneously.  Most canines do have a less efficient method of killing, therefore it is often seen as cruel.  Humans do no better with the meat processing industry though.

Most healthy wild animals attack for food, or to defend territory, mates, or young.  There are exceptions, most notably those animals that have tasted human flesh.  Starving, injured, or diseased animals are also far more likely to attack.  Wolf attacks are largely exaggerated, or involve animals with diseases such as rabies.

Even the werewolf is not always depicted as an evil, bloodthirsty creature.  Bisclavret, written by Marie de France in the 12th century, is one example of a more benevolent werewolf off the top of my head.

Werewolf culture, in my opinion, isn't any more dangerous than any other fixation on fantasy or horror.  Any obsession can be harmful when taken to extremes, but werewolf culture or more generally therianthropy would be even less dangerous than vampire culture in my opinion.  I do think the public view therianthropy as more harmless than vampirism.  The most I've heard of therianthropes doing is eating raw or rare meat, or unusual foods eaten by their phenotypes, such as insects.  Though some may find eating raw meat or unusual food such as insects disgusting, it isn't viewed with the fear and paranoia that people usually have toward blood drinking.  Eating raw meat can even be socially acceptable.  Look at the growing popularity of sashimi in the US.
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Necryn
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« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2011, 09:42:04 am »

Additional note:  I did use "werewolf culture" interchangeably to refer to both werewolf fans, and to wolf therianthropes, which are obviously two different things.  The original article seemed to refer to werewolf fans, but some of the commentary seemed to be referring to wolf therianthropes, so I tried to formulate a response in relation to both.
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Hellflame
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« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2011, 01:02:25 pm »

Quote
I think the point Etheros was trying to make is a vampire *can* feed without killing, while an animal *must* kill in order to feed.  Even humans must kill in order to feed.

The truth of this one is that animals dont always *have* to kill what they eat. Its more of the fact that it provides more food, and is better for the animal that is attacked. If a wolf caught a rabbit, left it alive, but ate two of its legs, that rabbit wouldn't survive long.

[/quote]Even the werewolf is not always depicted as an evil, bloodthirsty creature.  Bisclavret, written by Marie de France in the 12th century, is one example of a more benevolent werewolf off the top of my head.[/quote]

An intresting fact about werewolf legends, there are almost 3 times as many talking about how they are more of protectors than savage beast.
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Danielle
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« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2011, 02:10:15 pm »

Merticus poses a good point and question. Is it Dangerous? The short answer would be yes, the way the media portrays werewolves affects the people and can lead to misconstrues causing violent outbursts, murders, etc. But that is true for most things. No matter what you show the masses, somewhere, eventually, someone will twist it to what they believe it is and how it should be and act on it. Throughout history there have been accounts of murderers claiming to be possessed by demons, to be wolves and other animals but on the whole the mundane never take them seriously. If the werewolf/therian community approaches the rest of the world, the mundane as you call them, academically with diplomacy and understanding there would be less fear and less doubt. Though the mundane will still to a point associate the community with what they have been shown their entire lives and there will still be those people who take things too far, in time that can be replaced with knowledge and understanding instead of fear and doubt.   
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