(2020-04-30 16:16)LycanTheory Wrote: But why is is so important and in what context?
Why have we all devoted paragraphs, words, thought and time into focusing on the differences and similarities between therians and otherkin?
Every time this topic comes up, so does the question and I've yet to really find what suits me as an answer.
For me obviously this is relevant because TG is a Therianthropy website and thus anything that helps outline this is helpful in letting people understand which topics to pursue on this forum and which are irrelevant.
The other aspect is that by clarifying what exactly we mean when we say "Therianthropy", we help ourselves focus and thus help us understand ourselves better.
I don't know how to elegantly word this, but essentially every step we make in the direction of expressing our feelings about Therianthropy better, is a step in the direction of understanding what Therianthropy is. Like it or not even the best scientists won't be able to help us unravel Therianthropy, if we ourselves are not sure what exactly we feel or how to word it.
This distinction between Therians and Otherkin I feel additionally helps dispel some misconceptions, such as for example that Therianthropy is all about identity or that people who do not identify with earthly animals are not Therians. These are things I personally could not even begin to reasonably explain to myself, until I tried explaining what I've included in the post above. Now it makes sense and this is the value of making these distinctions -- I think this value is considerable.
There's more but this stuff keeps slipping my mind as I focus on the different things.
(2020-04-30 12:05)Atlantis Wrote: You want an example of some of these people who I would never consider therian? Elves, humanoid aliens, the vast majority of fae, angels and demons etc. I've talked to multiple people of each kintype (though of course I can't personally be a lie detector but that aside) and every single one I've talked to experiences shifts. But you know what those shifts lack? Animality. I think it's one of those things that's hard to pin down, but ultimately one of the clearest things we have which separates otherkin and therian. I feel for some reason that you've gotten the idea that not a lot or no otherkin experience shifts, perhaps because shifts and other experiences aren't necessarily the focus of the community
I think that you were very much right in the regard that there's important differences between the communities respectively, especially in that focus on identity. I also, however, really have to strongly disagree that shifts are the right path to go down when dividing that difference (there's also some people who are definitely therians who don't shift and never have and I'd feel really awful if they were put in a situation like BearX where they came back to the community and were suddenly no longer considered therian.) However if we wanted to talk about the substance of one's shifts and importance of identity vs shifts, that I can get behind.
Honestly I don't even experience shifts myself, my therianthropy is very integrated and my experience is mostly animality. I only included shifting because I think @Zefer Nezumi mentioned it in our conversations on Discord
. If there is someone who experiences shifts and has doubts on whether Otherkin who are not Therians share the same experiences, perhaps you could chime in on this.
If we take examples of Otherkin here on this site: We have @Raz
who as a Theriomythic is obviously Otherkin being a dragon, but has also very clearly stated she prefers to be seen as a Therian. As I understand it you @Atlantis
have a kintype which is both an alien and thus clearly Otherkin, and is a quadrupedal "animal" and therefore is a Therian. We have @Shuual
whom I helped interview in a therian talk
who explained that he is a Kitsune and has experiences matching those of Kitsune, but also aligns with the experiences of fox Therians. We have @Alliana
who identifies as a werewolf, but also has experiences that line up with those of wolf Therians. We have @LycanTheory
who has dabbled with a demon-kin Otherkin identity, yet is very obviously a dog Therian.
While it is a reasonable argument that Otherkin who do not identify as Therians would simply not show up on this forum or in other communities I liked to hang out in, I have not encountered any Otherkin I wouldn't call Therians who have described experiences like those of Therians.
I've been a member of the Therian community for 15 years when you were 11, so what we are seeing here is not due to lack of experience.
If such non-Therian Otherkin with Therian-like experiences are around, I'd love to talk to them about this directly and not talk in their name or discuss hypotheticals that may or may not be accurate.