Today, we're taking a look at some of the creatures from fantasy and how they've appeared in our world. Reincarnation, a belief that when the body dies, the soul inhabits another corporeal body.
Reincarnation has roots in Eastern religions. It was an idea formed in India by people who couldn't speak the language there, and who were also outside of the caste system. Essentially, reincarnation was created by hermits. Why or how they thought this up is a matter of debate, though it would be surprising if there weren't any powerful hallucinogenics involved.
" Time for another bong hit... Holy crap! Amir? That you!?!"
"Muuuuu...." (Translation: Why the fuck am I a yak?)
Reincarnation became a part of many different religions, and it spread to Western cultures over time. A short list of religions that have reincarnation as a part: Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. There are multiple factors that apply to reincarnation. There is karma, the scale which weighs your good deeds and bad deeds, samsara, your record of karma from a past life, and moksha, the proverbial brick wall of reincarnation that gets you out of the loop of rebirth.
Since reincarnation's conception and inclusion in many religions, there have been different philosophies regarding it, books, movies, and even scientific research. That's right. The people in lab coats are trying to figure out someone goes....
So, who has been reincarnated? While the scientists figure out the "complex" aspects of reincarnation, there are those in the world who show evidence of living as something that wasn't human in a past life.
The male counterpart to the succubus, the incubus is a demon out of medieval myth that snuck up on sleeping women and had sex with them in order to sustain their own life force. Incubi have been the scapegoats of rapists who actually attacked their victims while the victims were asleep. By shoving the blame onto an incubus, a rapist was able to get away scat free. The clergies back in medieval ages took incubi as "supernatural" causes for the attacks, and nobody was the wiser. The have also been blamed for sleep paralysis, unexplainable pregnancy, and wet dreams.
There have been debates on multiple aspects of the incubus. Its sexuality has been questioned, with some saying that it preys on both genders, but that argument has been countered by saying that an incubus is strictly heterosexual, and finds that attacking men would be unpleasant and detrimental. It's odd to think that demons have a sense of shame.
Pictured above: The last attempted male "victim"
A distinguishing characteristic of the incubus is how well endowed it is, and it is said that those who are attacked multiple times by incubi suffer from deteriorating health and, eventually, death.
So, who is it?
Pictured above: The Incubus
Born Ronald Jeremy Hyatt, Ron Jeremy is one of the most recognized faces in the world and has been hailed as the greatest porn star of all time.
This case is somewhat simple. Ron Jeremy shares multiple traits with the incubus.
Pictured above: Angered it was used for glue.
The Kelpie is a creature from Celtic folklore, and was known as a creature that haunted rivers in Scotland and Ireland. Also known as the "water horse", the kelpie's MO is to disguise itself as a beautiful horse or human, usually a woman. Using this disguise, the kelpie would lure mortals to rivers where it would transform, drag them underwater, and devour them. Though it is unknown why, the kelpie never eats the hearts or livers of its victims. There are debates as to why this is, though one theory suggests that the kelpie found it didn't have the taste for foie gras that today's culinary connoisseurs posses.
Eaten readily by self-indulgent bastards, yet inedible to monsters.
A common tactic for the kelpie is to convince its victims to ride on its back, which is apparently done in either form.Upon bearing a rider, the skin of he kelpie becomes adhesive, and the victim would be helpless as the creature took it underwater where the rest writes itself. A common Scottish tale is one of nine children who were tricked by a kelpie and eaten underwater. There was a tenth child who, instead of riding the horse, stroked its nose. Upon finding that his finger was stuck, the child drew his pocket knife and hacked off his own finger to save his life.
Distinguishing features of the kelpie are the aforementioned adhesive skin, a constantly dripping mane, lurking under the water with one eye above the surface, and an appetite for children.
So, who is it?
Mary Kay Letourneau
Picture above: The Kelpie
While she should technically be referred to as Mary Kay Fualaau, nobody would recognize it when we revealed who it was. For those of you who don't remember, this is the woman convicted of statutory rape for having sex with her 13-year old student.
While some would contend that this could not be true, we still have evidence!
Pictured above: Fantasy fiction canon fodder
Many of you recognize the goblin from countless works of fiction such as Lord of the Rings, World of Warcraft, Harry Potter, Magic the Gathering, Spider-Man, and any Dungeons and Dragons campaign. The goblin is a highly diverse creature and appears in many different cultures in many different ways.
The origin of the goblin can be traced back to Britain. The spreading of goblins in various cultures comes from tales of the goblin sneaking on to ships leading everywhere around the world. The term "goblin" is usually used to describe any sort of small, mischievous, being. The goblin has been lumped in with the gnome, the dwarf, the elf, and the brownie as a small creature, though it would be considered the black sheep of the entire group.
Pictured above: The brownie of English lore
Not pictured: Chocolaty goodness
The description of a goblin and what characteristics it possesses vary from what culture it is being used in. In British lore, goblins are depicted as having various abilities and temperaments. The appearance of goblin varies, though the most popular is that of a smaller creature with knife-like ears, an ugly disposition, and is usually perceived as being foul tempered. They delight in taking part of many acts of mischief and evil.
So, who is it?
Pictured above: The Goblin
Originally known as Mario Amaretto Lavander, Perez Hilton is a blogger and internet personality who gained fame for his take on various gossip, and gained notoriety for "outing" alleged closeted celebrities.
Given the diverse history of the goblin, we've been able to determine that Perez Hilton is, indeed, a goblin.
The author would like to note that there is no picture of himself. So...
The basilisk is a creature from various European legends. It is often called the "King of Serpents" and has the ability to kill someone with a single glance. There are some tales that instead of killing its victims, it turns them into stone instead. The basilisk is also known to be a very poisonous creature. It has the ability to exhale a poison haze and leaves behind a wide trail of venomous slime that poisons people on contact. Its only weakness is the odor of a weasel when thrown into the basilisk's lair, which usually was a hole.
Anyone wanna throw him a hole?
The basilisk is sometimes confused with the "cockatrice", another creature with avian features that also has the power to turn people to stone, though it favors the method of pecking a victim. The basilisk earned its moniker as "king" because of the crown shaped crest it has on its head. Legend says that a basilisk can be born from the egg of a toad or snake which has been sat on by a chicken, or cockatrice.
The basilisk's appearance ranges from fully reptilian to a reptile with avian features. It may have as many as eight legs or it my slither around as its main form of transportation.
So, who is it?
Pictured above: The Basilisk
Glenn Beck is a Fox News commentator, which should explain everything about him.
Though we all knew that Glenn Beck was a snake of some sort, many didn't know the full extent of the accusation.
Pictured above: The guy it all started from
Up until this entry, the article had not focused on a specific representation of any creature. This one is an exception because Dracula still exists.
The details of vampires and what you can identify them by is already well know, what with twilight running rampant through the world. Vampires are among the most famous creatures of any lore for their power, longevity, and the whole feeding-on-blood thing. Tales of vampires have existed since ancient times, though vampires didn't gain popularity until the 18th century.
Pictured above: What vampires are all about: sucking
The most notable portrayal of the vampire would be Dracula. Dracula was originally a Romanian general named Vlad Tepes, or Vlad the Impaler. He earned that nickname for his habit of impaling people on spikes in front of his castle as a disciplinary measure. After ruling over a country three different times, Vlad lost his life in a battle against the Ottomans. He was decapitated in the battle. How he became a vampire is somewhat muddled in different cultures. Before his death, Vlad Tepes was known to be involved with the "Order of the Dragon", a very secretive brotherhood of knights whom have more going for them than the Illuminati and Freemasons. The name "Dracula" means "son of Dracul", as Vlad Tepes's father was "Vlad II Dracul". Dracula is among the most powerful of vampires in any culture and one of the most recognizable villains in history. He has many skills, including various forms of black magic and the ability to shapeshift at will.
So, who is it?
Pictured above: Count Dracula
A man who needs no introduction.
As said before, Dracula is a special case because Hugh Hefner actually IS Dracula.
Pictured above: An Oriental "looping" dragon
The dragon is another creature of myth that exists in many different cultures. The two most popular depictions of dragons are the serpentine versions from Japan and China, and the European dragons which look more like giant, winged, lizards.
Dragons are creatures of great power. They are deadly combatants, powerful thinkers, and have a hobby of hoarding treasure of all forms, from gold, to gems, to art, to arms and armor. Many dragons are depicted as evil and covetous creatures. With their power and the payoff of getting their hoard if you kill one, dragons have made great antagonists and game bosses over the time of their existence in popular culture.
Pictured above: A famous (indirect) dragon killer
Dragons take forms of all shapes and sizes and are able to change their forms as well. They could be anyone, anywhere. They've been a part of many different cultures and are often seen as a sign of superiority over all else.
So, who is it?
Pictured above: The Dragon
The late, great, martial artist.
Pictured above: A real screamer
The Banshee has origins in Irish myth, and is seen as a harbinger of death or a messenger from the "Otherworld", the Celtic land of the dead. The banshee was a fairy who was mourning over the death of important people around her. After practicing this for so long, the fairy became the banshee and was able to foretell death.
Banshees would float through towns and wail next to different houses. Wherever she wailed, someone in that house was going to die. There are tales that say certain families would have a banshee haunting their house and whenever she screamed, someone would be dying and soon.
Screw that first picture. THIS is a real screamer.
Banshees can take up various forms. They usually appear as women, sometimes as frightening apparitions, but also as beautiful maidens of any age they desire. They've also been known to take the shape of various animals associated with magic, such as crows or weasels.
Pictured above: A banshee in disguise?
So, who is it?
Pictured above: The Banshee
The already popular singer, Lady Gaga is going to end up as this generation's Madonna.
We're not saying the girl can't sing...
There are many other beings of myth and legend that didn't make the list. Here are some of them.
Kappa - Michael Phelps
That arm flap thing isn't something HUMANS do. He swims like he's a creature that lurks in rivers.
Hydra - Westboro Baptist Church
A monster like no other. Many have decapitated the beast but none have cauterized the wounds.
Changeling - Brittney Spears
We've seen her go from teen idol to someone who isn't as responsible as Kevin Federline.
Imp - Church of Scientology
Imps are little pranksters. They'll take your money, lock you in a dungeon, and give you a level of how devout of a follower you are. Sounds like being jerked around a bit. Screw that. Hail Xenu!
Conquest (of the Four Horsemen) - Stephanie Meyer
Don't need to explain that one, do I?