Tag Archives: Who Forted

The Spirit of the Wolf

I do not remember exactly where this notification came from, Twitter perhaps, but I recently saw this story from the amusingly titled Who Forted blog. As anyone who has been reading for a while knows, I have a soft spot for stories of werewolves and Black Dogs and the recurrent reports of manwolves throughout the US (and now, per Linda Godfrey, the world) make my ears perk up, so to speak.

As manwolf stories go, this one is pretty typical. A night shift worker has not one, but two, encounters with creatures that appeared to be bipedal and wolf-like. Interestingly, both times, the beings seemed to be moving in groups and the witness did note several color variations. The author of the blog post, Ken Summers, also noted that Linda Godfrey had reported a manwolf incident in the same area in her book Real Wolfmen. Mr. Summers goes on to note a possible mountain lion sighting in the area – unusual since mountain lions are supposed to have been killed off in this region.

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Mr. Summers closes out his article with these words which really got me thinking:

Silver Creek is a tributary for the aptly named Wolf Creek. Long ago, Timber Wolves were common across Ohio, though as farming developed among early settlers, these furry canines became less of an accepted part of the wilderness and more of a nuisance as the animals hunted and killed many sheep. Thousands of Ohio wolves were hunted, trapped, and poisoned in an effort to eradicate them from the area. 1842 marked the final killing of a wolf in Ohio and the end of the wolf’s presence here. While wolves have been driven from Ohio, perhaps something far more frightening has replaced them.

Silver Creek is in Ohio, home of a number of mounds left behind by early indigenous peoples. I’ve theorized, in past blogs, that the manwolf might, in some cases, be a sort of materialized guardian left in place by the medicine people of those early tribes to protect the mounds and burial sites of their people. Reading Mr. Summers’ piece, though, another thought occurred to me.

Anyone who has taken even a cursory look at the new shamanism, as proposed by people like Michael Harner and Sandra Ingerman, will be familiar with the concept of a power animal – a spirit, in animal form, that serves as your guide during shamanic journeys in particular areas. Some people confuse the power animal with a totem animal – a spirit, sometimes in animal form, that has allied itself to a particular group of people. The totem ranges across all of human culture from the varying societies with animal totems in the Native American traditions (the Cherokee and Iroquois had clans that were aligned to various animals) to the wolf and bear warriors of the ancient Norse who actually took on the traits of their totem in battle.

A totem animal is a powerful spirit in its own right and, with the attention and offerings of a group of people, it only becomes more powerful. As with any relationship with spirit, one has to approach an animal totem with respect in order to avoid any negative repercussions and one would never harm the totem’s representative animal unless given specific permission from the spirit to do so (as in those Native and Norse folk who wore the skins of their totem for certain occasions).

Harming of the totem’s representative animal can result in harm to the person who causes that injury and, in extreme cases, even death, if one violates a taboo laid by or about the totem. I am minded of the Celtic warrior Cuchulain (the hound of Chulain) who was forbidden to eat dog meat as a part of the relationship with his totem. Cuchulain was killed in battle after being tricked into eating the flesh of a dog by an enemy.

So, what has this to do with our manwolves? Simply, the wolf is a common totem amongst Native people. It is admired for its hunting ability and for its structured, efficient and loving pack life. We know that the European settlers regarded the wolf with fear and loathing. Once they had driven the Native people from Ohio, settling them in out of the way places or killing them, they turned their hand immediately to what they knew best – farming and livestock husbandry. Wolves and other apex predators went from being respected representatives of their totems to wicked slayers of sheep and other livestock, good only when they were dead.

As the article notes, by 1842, the settlers had managed to wipe out the wolf population in Ohio. I doubt that the wolf totem, the powerful spirit of the wolf, simply skulked off to hide on the reservations or disappeared into what woodland was left. Mr. Summers says, “While wolves have been driven from Ohio, perhaps something far more frightening has replaced them.”

I admit that my thinking is pure conjecture. I’ve not done any journey work to test this theory. It simply makes intuitive sense to me that the spirit of the wolf might want to periodically remind the ancestors of those rapacious settlers that they are not the apex predators that they think they are. The manwolves could be something like a tulpa created by the spirit of the wolf or they could be the spirits of those who walked with wolf skins on when they were alive and who have become a part of the spirit of the wolf in death.

While I have heard of no serious injuries in manwolf reports, the creatures certainly scare the life out of most who see them and many witnesses report the strong feeling that the creatures would and could do them harm. Maybe, just maybe, the physical wolves are gone and have been replaced by representatives from Wolf itself.

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Getting out of the Box

I recently encountered this interesting addendum to a classic “UFO” case while perusing my news feeds. I found myself wondering why the site, which has a resident wizard who writes a column there, did not turn to that person when this information came up.

I have a great deal of admiration for Fortean and Paranormal field investigators. These folks spend their leisure time and hard earned money to seek out witnesses and try to document high strangeness in whatever way they can. They write up notes, record witness interviews, take videographic and photographic evidence, cast any prints etc. so that they are left with a mass of data about a sighting at the end of their field experience. If they collate enough of this data and find it unique, they will write an article or even a book and, at some point in their writing, speculate about the cause of the high strangeness they are documenting.

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What puzzles me, given the strangeness that they work with regularly, is the unwillingness of most investigators to think a little outside the box in terms of determining causation. How many times have you heard of an investigator hooking up with someone who has experience and credentials in remote viewing, for example, to get their view on a case? I, as someone who thinks that boxes are for packing household goods, would be most interested in hearing what such a person had to say. Obviously, this information might be apropos or it might be way off base but it would be something additional for the investigator to think about.

While some investigators do not consult with remote viewers or other practitioners of ‘occult’ arts’ because they feel they already know the answers (Sasquatch are unknown bipedal apes, UFO’s are the vehicles of extraterrestrials), I believe that most investigators simply never think of such things. Despite their continued exposure to high strangeness, I feel that a lot of investigators have a subconscious (or perhaps fully conscious) desire to bring some ‘legitimacy’ to their field. As a result, these investigators tend to approach their cases using mundane tools and scientific instruments and avoid any hint of the ‘woo’ (psychics, magicians, witches, medicine people, etc). Basically, they are trying to document phenomenon that tend to be ethereal and hard to pin down using the tools of scientific materialism.

While the good old who, what, where, when, why and maybe how approach is certainly a good basis for beginning an investigation and documenting people’s perception of what happened, using some of the other tools in the arcane arsenal can and should be a recourse for the investigator who finds him or herself looking at something that does not appear to be a hoax, misidentification or hysterical incident. I will give an example from my own experience.

I had an opportunity, about three years ago, to work with a paranormal investigator who also happened to be a very “out of the box” thinker. As an experiment he asked me to do a series of etheric projections to sites that he gave me and to write up reports on what I saw while I was there.

Etheric projection is somewhat like the more familiar astral projection except that it operates in the “layer” of reality that immediately overlays the physical. It is more risky than astral projection since the etheric body is more “solid” than the astral and can bring damage back to the physical if the practitioner encounters something hostile. Also, the etheric projector, in order to maintain a cohesive projection has to move somewhat like a person in the physical world. Unlike astral projection, the traveller can not simply think of a place and be there but has to actually make his or her way there. I use Google Earth and a good map program to home in on the coordinates when I do this (although I can ‘fly’ in the etheric body which makes things a little easier).

On my first projection in this series, I followed the directions to a forested hill in the midst of flat farmland. Immediately upon arriving, I felt uncomfortable and kept looking at the sky. This discomfort was such that I actually took cover under the tree canopy. As I made my way into the denser brush, I had a feeling that I had disturbed something and caught a glimpse of what I took to be a Sasquatch making its way quickly away from me and then disappearing. I stayed in the cover of the trees for a period of time, aware of nature spirits around me wondering what the heck I was doing there, and waited to see if anything further would happen. Time passed and eventually I decided to return to my body as nothing else developed. I documented my findings and sent them to the investigator, wondering what that was all about.

The investigator in question got back to me shortly thereafter. It turns out that the coordinate area was known for UFO sightings (thus the discomfort from above). The area was also known for several hairy hominid sightings so the information about the Sasquatch did not surprise him either. Interestingly, he had not received any reports from the area in some time so the information I got came from an old trail.

I would be very interested in trying a projection into a fresh investigation site. I think it would be quite interesting to drop into the middle of a fresh Missing 411 case or something like the incident described in the case that I led off with. There are no certainties in this sort of work (I have had instance where I went to a place and got very little, almost as if they were blocked off) but I suspect that, given a chance to check out a site that had received a recent incursion, I might see/encounter all sorts of interesting things. Such a project though would definitely require an investigator who was willing to think outside the box and take whatever I could produce as just another piece of the puzzle.