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Thread: Myth and Monsters

  1. #21
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    I simply can't perceive the overwhelming majority of the monsters and mythical creatures seriously.

    Because I have pretty deep interests in biology, I somehow embedded the biological/evolutionary intuition into my perception. And when I look on the image of say, some mythical creature - it triggers the feeling than this creature make zero sense, cannot exist, and purely a product of human imagination. Which, in my opinion, is way inferior to the nature itself.

    Violation of all possible laws of physics, anatomy, biomechanics. Combination of incombinable morphological traits, associated with adaptation to different habitat conditions and behaviour, that couldn't possibly evolve together, and/or antagonistic to each other. Anatomical inconsistency. For flyers - violation of aerodynamics and/or weight distribution. Wings growing from inappropriate places without any signs of skeletal adaptations to flight or sufficient flight musculus. Violation of square - cube law... This sort of stuff.

    One of the few exceptions here are dragons/wyverns. Still 95% of them trigger this feelings, but there are at least some with relatively small sizes and somewhat realistic anatomy, whom I can perceive as biologically viable living creatures. Also, modelling of biologically realistic dragons and their evolutionary path looks like a fun thought experiment for me.


    And because my perception of beauty is also interlinked with functionality and complexity, less impressive but more biologically realistic creatures usually looks for me much more beautiful, even if there is less horns or spikes growing from everywhere...
    Last edited by Forest Wind; April 8th, 2021 at 04:52 AM.

  2. #22

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    Thanks for your input. My UPG is heading toward the mythical, but I am not particularly offended that my UPG as to my self conceptions would drive you up the wall. I mean, if your therianthropy is far more tied into real life animals, cool. I think we all need to be humble in all this and remember we are human beings who feel like, in some way or another, not human. That just isn't something, in and of itself, that science and reason account for.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
    This might come off as weird- Wait, this is werelist. Let's go nuts!

    Just curious to know if any of you think of yourself as being monsters or like monsters. I bring this up because, in the shower today, it accured to me that, if I have a true form, or if I saw my scorpion self in a dream, it might look like a monster more than a normal scorpion. I've always enjoyed horror movies and heavy metal and feel a certain connection to monsterious things. Then again, were I to see a scorpion from a point of view other than from the point of view of a human looking down at it, it might seem alien or monstrous.

    I felt a certain rightness to the feeling, and I also felt an acceptance. Should it turn out I am some sort of mythical monster in some capacity or another, it doesn't mean I have to be a certain way or not be another way. I'm still me.

    I'm wondering how many mythical creatures we have, and I wonder how many of you would be considered monsters? I know there are dragon therians.

    I'm still not comfortable calling myself a mythical creature, even with some cue-by-fours in altered states of consciousness.
    Honestly, in terms of being a monster... yes and no (go figure).

    Objectively, I relate to werewolves and the 'monstruous' because I'm a big facultative bipedal canine that likely primarily hunts humanoids. That is, from an outsider point of view, pretty monstrous! Hunting humans is a terrifying idea for the average human, especially by something of a completely different, unrecognizable species. It's quite literally the stuff of horror movies, and it's no small part of why I love them. I see myself in those creatures, not the shrieking humans I'm probably meant to relate to, largely because of looks and acts.

    But would I call myself a monster? Is that a label I would use to describe myself? No, honestly. Because I view myself through the lens of my own experiences...and in my unconscious understandings, my species is just that: another species, out there in the big wide world, doing it's thing. No more a monster than a bobcat or a falcon.

    I would call myself mythical, if only because canine psychopomps exist most familiarly in human mythos. But I could also potentially call myself fictionkin because of that too, or divinekin, by the same logic. It's a nebulous existence, one that relies a lot on both personal choice AND outsider knowledge/perception, but it's one I like to embrace; it's half the reason I coined folcintera for myself, after all. My species also somewhat defines my personal relationship with my deities and somewhat with my spirituality as a whole, which adds a whole 'nother level to the complexity...but that'll probably take at least another decade before it sets itself in stone, so I'm not even going to bother trying to fit it in to considerations right now.

    I don't think I'd be upset if someone else called my species monstruous, but it's just not how I see myself personally. Mythical is a lot closer.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forest Wind View Post
    I simply can't perceive the overwhelming majority of the monsters and mythical creatures seriously.

    Because I have pretty deep interests in biology, I somehow embedded the biological/evolutionary intuition into my perception. And when I look on the image of say, some mythical creature - it triggers the feeling than this creature make zero sense, cannot exist, and purely a product of human imagination. Which, in my opinion, is way inferior to the nature itself.
    The number of dragons with wing patagium that connects back at the armpits...

    Like, okay, unless you re-calibrate the laws of physics or whatever, something that big and heavy isn’t going to have powered flight like a bat. But at least make it look like it could... This is one of my biggest monster design pet peeves.

    That said, I’m usually pretty willing to suspend my disbelief to look at cool monsters, and sometimes I love ones that make no sense at all (like Gamera the giant turtle kaiju, who flies by pulling in his limbs, which are replaced by rocket propulsion that makes him spin wildly as he flies...)

    Also pet peeve: The number of monsters and aliens that are basically just re-skinned humans. A universe to evolve in, and everybody’s got the same body plan? Boring.
    Last edited by Kisota; May 5th, 2021 at 07:28 AM.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kisota
    Also pet peeve: The number of monsters and aliens that are basically just re-skinned humans. A universe to evolve in, and everybody’s got the same body plan? Boring.
    This is something that turns me off most sci-fi, including the fact that the majority of published authors in any field just aren't very good; you definitely see this in serial killer thrillers and almost anything involving werewolves or vampires.

    Boring worldbuilding and loving descriptions of alien races... who look humanoid. Alter the skin colour, add extra teeth or an extra jaw, add a head crest and a "braincase" (I hate that term), enlarge their eyes (bulging, round, black), maybe add gills or a tail and spikes or clawed hands, and there's your alien species. If it's a sci-fi alien, their language uses a lot of the letters k and x, and their names are always hyphenated. There's also always a culture war brewing. War, to me, is one of the least interesting forms of conflict in novels. (Ursula K. Le Guin wrote about this.)

    I remember ranting about this "humanoid species" trend to an IRL friend who's literally a genius and incredibly creative, after she recommended Eragon. (Dragons. The author is autistic.) She said, "Yeah, most authors are lazy."
    "To insult someone we call him 'bestial'. For deliberate cruelty and nature, 'human' might be the greater insult."
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  6. #26

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    Part of the reskinned humans problem is simply movie and TV producing needing to work within a budget. Another part is the story telling factor. In fiction, aliens and monsters are really about us, humans, very often an "out group". An author may wish to have people but changed up a bit in order to signal something toward a story's message.

    That said, reskinned humans can get very boring. This happens way too often with elves. Oh, elves... are humans, but taller, thinner, pointy eared, sexier, kinder to the environment, wiser..... oh, but some of them are blue and live in water, and some are black and live underground and are all scary and spooky. Others are gold and live in sunny places and blah blah blah blah blah

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
    Part of the reskinned humans problem is simply movie and TV producing needing to work within a budget. Another part is the story telling factor. In fiction, aliens and monsters are really about us, humans, very often an "out group". An author may wish to have people but changed up a bit in order to signal something toward a story's message.

    That said, reskinned humans can get very boring. This happens way too often with elves. Oh, elves... are humans, but taller, thinner, pointy eared, sexier, kinder to the environment, wiser..... oh, but some of them are blue and live in water, and some are black and live underground and are all scary and spooky. Others are gold and live in sunny places and blah blah blah blah blah
    Yeah, I agree with those reasons behind why there are so many re-skinned humans/humanoids in fantasy and fiction. And though I do get critical and bored with them in certain stories/series, I have a soft-spot for a large number of humanoids, particularly more 'monstrous' or 'animalistic' ones, so I don't mind it as much. When it comes to vampires, for example, I prefer them to be mostly human-looking with some physical (and behavioral) animalistic aspects but I am picky about it and can be prone to being like "too human" or "not humanoid enough". With werewolves, I prefer them to be more like bipedal wolves rather than a hairy human with fangs and claws. Mermaids, I like them to be more animalistic, especially with gills and full body scales, along with preferring angels to be bipedal animalistic roughly humanoids with wings rather than just winged humans in appearance.
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    ~Check out Radiant Obscurities, and help contribute to its development
    ~Poly'kin of: mongoose, domestic cat, domestic horse, winged theropod (erdenvogel), and vampire'kin (blutpir) [not psi/sang]

  8. #28
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    I suppose this is maybe a bit of a late reply to this but your original question of if others see themselves as monsters I feel that may be a very loose term to question. "Monster" is ill defined and often seen as something that is "scary". Personally I am a might fond of words like "criptid" being used to refer to me because it is hard to identify what I may be feeling at any given point in time. Eldritch monstrosity is a good phrase, but I cannot imagine that this would be a comfort to most- especially not an animal that is simply trying to survive in their environment. In that context i would more attribute "monster" to a poacher that is there to kill that animal without really needing to.

    It becomes a game of personal preference and how you may personally feel about how words are used and/or what they imply.

    And regarding Sonne's mention of angels-
    Quote Originally Posted by Sonne_Spiritwind View Post
    Yeah, I agree with those reasons behind why there are so many re-skinned humans/humanoids in fantasy and fiction. [...] along with preferring angels to be bipedal animalistic roughly humanoids with wings rather than just winged humans in appearance.
    to me these are entities that aren't even humanoids with wings to begin with. A quick googling of seraphim, ophanim and cherubim will make the reason for this very clear- restating that a concept may be different depending on who you ask. This is a phenomenon I like to call "cupidization", in reference to how the deity Eros through time had his mythos turned into the folklore of a flying human baby and had the love of his life simply fade into obscurity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Coyote Jones View Post
    This is something that turns me off most sci-fi, including the fact that the majority of published authors in any field just aren't very good; [...] I remember ranting about this "humanoid species" trend to an IRL friend who's literally a genius and incredibly creative, after she recommended Eragon. (Dragons. The author is autistic.) She said, "Yeah, most authors are lazy."
    I agree with you [and I'm Kryptonian. Oof.]. When we discuss Klingons, Kryptonians, Vulcans- it becomes a bit of a royal pain! In a seemly endless void of space with chances for life to be based on ANYTHING at all, why are so many alien species from media so human? It's a really strange place to be as a nonhuman species of this variety because asserting that nonhumanity is very difficult when you look unmistakably human.
    Last edited by P0LYB1UZ; May 9th, 2021 at 02:40 PM. Reason: a few edits done to expand my thoughts and edit typos
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  9. #29
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    Zhuards are most definitely monsters--kaiju in their origin form--but definitely considered monstrous to many. Their somewhat mammalian look is shallow. Take a closer look, watch them manipulate their physical bodies and you'd feel uncomfortable around one. Well...unless you like them of course haha.

    I'd like to add that I've written such extensive things concerning zhuards and how they exist, both metaphysically and biologically that after so many years of my own studies of earth like animals I can conclude zhuards have their own specific quirks that are of their own uniqueness despite certain functionality that reminds us of normal animals. I suppose all that to say skeptics do not bother me. At this point, I am my own researcher, and as someone who is a therian with great interest in respect to biological and physiological differences- comparing zhuards whom are only partly biological to things that are fully flesh and blood has been a very insightful (yet somewhat frustrating at times) journey. I break down things as much as I can for those interested in learning about them too. Drawing helps I suppose.
    Last edited by Vintage; May 10th, 2021 at 06:45 PM. Reason: some musings
    Timber wolf therian-- Zhuardarian changeling-- horse hearted
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