Humans, Hairy Beasts, and High Strangeness

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Not too long ago, I used to be current in-studio for a roundtable podcast dialogue as regards to cryptozoology, that includes various researchers with various views on the phenomena in query. Amongst them had been fellow Mysterious Universe author Nick Redfern, who helps the likelihood that some cryptozoological tales could have unconventional or “paranormal” explanations, in addition to researcher Lyle Blackburn, who takes a extra “flesh and blood” method along with his research.

To talk of Redfern’s paranormal method to the crypto mysteries, sometimes we do discover experiences that fall underneath the Man of the woods class that, to place it merely, current plenty of unruly issues. Whereas these experiences, which some could assign to the so-called realm of “excessive strangeness”, are within the seldom minority, they’re typically ignored by the better cryptozoology neighborhood for various causes… a few of them superb ones.

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The creator and Nick Redfern within the Expanded Views studio with Lyle Blackburn (not pictured).

Usually, the research of creatures like “Man of the woods” approaches this thriller from the attitude that these entities, no matter they might actually be, are more likely to be some type of organic entity that carefully resembles humankind. That’s, the most seemingly avenue, and thus probably the most extensively accepted method to their research, appears to be the flesh-and-blood angle. Nonetheless, when peering a bit deeper into the thriller, these creatures are presupposed to boast various curious components that beg additional consideration… and will equally warrant totally different modes of thought utilized to understanding their total which means.

There are a small minority of tales that not solely contain the looks of creatures like Man of the woods, but additionally what some interpret to be metaphysical skills some have ascribed to them, by way of having the ability to merely “vanish” into skinny air.

I used to be informed a narrative alongside these strains myself various years in the past, whereas visiting a Man of the woods convention in Newcomerstown, Ohio, which was shared with me by one of many presenters that 12 months. I recall this fellow as being a researcher who altogether appeared pretty “nuts and bolts” in his method, and but, after the speak he gave, informed me in strictest confidence about seeing “Chewbacca” on a darkish nation street in rural Pennsylvania again throughout the mid Nineties.

The incident occurred proper round nightfall, and as he watched the animal strolling alongside the roadway between two corn fields at round nightfall, illuminated within the headlights of his automobile, the factor very all of a sudden vanished, leaving no hint of the creature he had noticed. For relatively apparent causes, the presenter in query had felt it is likely to be in good style to omit this facet of the story from his presentation, and equally requested me to not share his title together with the story in future retellings.

Certainly, whereas there could also be a plethora of experiences on the market that appear to contain odd-goings-on like this, starting from the sorts of disappearances described above, to absurd recollections of Man of the woods creatures seen sporting clothes, and even Wildman encounters that happen together with flying saucer sightings. Admittedly, this stuff appear so outrageous, particularly inside the cultural context we now have ascribed to the Man of the woods beast (that of a relic hominid, or comparable species that has developed parallel to our personal) that we merely can not settle for them.

However asking a kind of actually tough questions, maybe we should take into account one thing else that’s troubling concerning the thriller surrounding Man of the woods. Whereas these “animals” (if taken as being actual in any respect) look like fairly bodily, and consisting of flesh and blood such as you or I, one should admit to their uncanny elusiveness. That’s, even when a small inhabitants of the creatures have been all that existed worldwide, shouldn’t we now have only a bit extra exhausting proof supporting their existence?

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Some would argue that such dependable bodily proof does exist, and that the true downside entails the varied avenues that aren’t being reached by way of bringing such compelling proof to the forefront of the scientific mainstream. Examples of this would come with not simply the multitudes of eyewitness experiences collected through the years, but additionally the proof in footprint castings, hair samples, audio recordings, and pictures or video — nonetheless blurry and obscure they look like. Nonetheless, regardless of all of the collected “proof” of this kind, the obvious lack of what we would name a “smoking gun” has dissuaded many from investing additional involvement in your complete mess… although it may once more level to the notion that there could also be extra to the elusiveness these creatures possess such a mastery of.

To droop our disbelief for a second and provides open-minded consideration to the issues surrounding Wildman, one working premise I’ve thought of has to do with the likelihood that Man of the woods creatures, whereas certainly bodily, flesh-and-blood creatures, may very well signify some facet of humanity.

This sounds very scary, and maybe tough and even unimaginable to just accept. Nonetheless, if this have been the case — that Man of the woods have been way more human than they’re typically taken to be — we would agree that whereas they clearly aren’t “human” such as you or I, they might nonetheless signify some facet of our evolutionary heritage that’s scary sufficient to appear unique, and but shut sufficient that there could be no must account for his or her existence with notions of relic hominids, half-human monsters, or para-physical beasts of one other dimension. Alternatively, perhaps the extra credible experiences of Man of the woods contain things like precise feral people, in addition to trustworthy misidentifications, and sometimes the ill-intended hoax simply as nicely… all of those may conceivably summarize Man of the woods as a human endeavor, although a multi-faceted one. Nonetheless, these situations don’t seem to account for all the weather introduced in eyewitness experiences, starting from the dimensions and conduct of the creatures, to their extra beastly bodily traits that set them other than something as simple as a “wild particular person”. 

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A roadside Man of the woods sighting? Effectively, form of…

It is likely to be unfair to fully low cost the “excessive strangeness” circumstances of Man of the woods, or for that matter, different proposed cryptozoological entities which are reported now and again. Nonetheless, we would additionally argue that among the many issues related to understanding such phenomenon are the variations between interpretations that draw from reality, and what not less than conform to the overall requisites of consensus actuality, versus these which draw from the seemingly imaginary.

On the finish of the day, there could but show to be some factual foundation underlying experiences of creatures like Man of the woods… nonetheless, by that point, it might be revealed that they weren’t fairly what we as soon as thought that they had been.

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