(2019-06-24 20:01)DustWolf Wrote:
(2019-06-24 4:16)Citrakayah Wrote: If a therian believed they were transforming into their theriotype--and given the number of people who have claimed to be able to p-shift, at least some of them probably thought they were telling the truth--how would you distinguish them from a clinical lycanthrope?
I would primarily seek to distinguish these delusions from therianthropy, as most of us experience it. I do think that people who claim to be able to p-shift are either dishonest or delusional and I don't think that believing you are able to p-shift has anything to do with therianthropy.
Clearly, they are all delusional or dishonest, barring someone, say, seeing their eye change color in different light and concluding that they are able to shapeshift. The fact that we do not experience delusions, as a group, however, does not mean that a therian cannot be delusional. Therians can be delusional just like any other person, and given the existence of phantom limbs and mental shifts, it should not be a total surprise if a delusional therian believed themselves to be shapeshifting.
Even if therianthropy exists as a condition separate from all others, stemming from a single root cause (which I doubt), and there exists a clinical lycanthropy completely separate from it, without even a similarity in the somatosensory shifts clinical lycanthropes and therians both perceive, psychologists are not going to be able to distinguish a delusional therian that thinks they can shapeshift from a clinical lycanthrope, since they know so little about clinical lycanthropes and even less about us.
As far as believing you can p-shift having anything to do with therianthropy, it clearly does. The very term "p-shift" was invented by therians. We can call people who say they can delusional, ostracize them, and ban them, and I think we're right to do so. But we can't pretend a belief that crops up often in the community, has been around pretty much since the beginning, and is related to traveling between the states of human and animal has no relation to therianthropy.
(2019-06-24 20:01)DustWolf Wrote: The obvious answer is that if one ceases to have the symptoms of a medical condition, this would mean that they no longer have it.
Why yes, they'd no longer have clinical lycanthropy. But their experiences would, now, be no different from the majority of therians. They identify as an animal, like us. They experience animalistic urges and display animalistic behaviors, again like us.
So they'd be a former clinical lycanthrope that is now a therian. Or a former clinical lycanthrope who was always a therian. I think the latter makes more sense, conceptually--you don't stop being a therian because you become delusional, and you don't start being a therian because you've stopped.
(2019-06-24 20:01)DustWolf Wrote: I realise that the perspective of both articles is different, but it is clear from this example that the Clinical Lycanthrope above was delusional due to a temporary psychotic break, unable to process what they were experiencing, whereas Kaitsev is a clearminded, analytical rational person trying to put lifelong experiences into a sensible context.
What you cited is a case study of one person. There are also case studies where there was no remission, or "partial remission"--Jan Dirk Blom reports that only a little over a third of cases of clinical lycanthropy (he only addresses people who think they turn into wolves) resulted in full remission of symptoms.
Meanwhile, Keck et al., in their 1988 paper "Lycanthropy: alive and well in the twentieth century," has "The individual behaved in a manner reminiscent of a particular animal, i.e. howling, growling, crawling on all fours," be entirely sufficient for diagnosis of clinical lycanthropy. They also described someone who believed for at least thirteen years that they were a "cat trapped in a human body" as a clinical lycanthrope--but this person was clearly delusional, since they believe the cat their family lived with as a child informed them of this and taught them cat language.*
This person held a job, spent six years in psychotherapy, and was treated at least three different kinds of drugs. They still thought they were a cat, they still hunted with cats, spent all their time around cats, preferred to sleep in places cats would sleep, and was in love with a tigress at the local zoo. Take away the belief that the family cat told them they were a cat and taught them cat language, and pretty much none of us would say they weren't a therian. We'd just tell them to get over the tigress and that spending "virtually all his free time" doing "feline activities" didn't sound particularly healthy.
Are we, largely, clearheaded? Yes. Are they, almost entirely as far as we can tell, not? Also yes. Are there similarities? Again, yes. They could be entirely superficial similarities, but they also might not be, and that means that simply asserting that they're unrelated is too hasty. Some of them could be therians that happen to have delusions related to their therianthropy, and the feeling of transforming some of them experience could be due to the same or similar root causes as phantom shifts. There are lots of unknowns and many possibilities.
* I am assuming that he thought the cat told him verbally, because the paper doesn't say. If he thought the cat's body language was telling him this, and thinks he can understand cats because he was raised with cats... then I wouldn't call him delusional. Wrong, yes, as far as the cat telling him he's a cat goes.