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Any difference?
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Post: #1
Any difference?
The kitsune. Magical creatures that are skilled at illusions and visual shapeshifting. They often take on a human role temporarily for an ulterior motive, and may cause lots of problems along the way.

But are they foxes?

The inugami. Another magical creature, this time formed from a heartless owner's attempt at creating a weapon to be used on others. It is cruelly starved to death in life, and then the vengeance it's spirit feels is used to attack others, sometimes turning onto the owner that created it.

But are they still dogs?

Both of these examples cross a line between what's zoologically real, and what's mythologically real. They are animals (fox and dog) that we can for sure say exist on Earth, and that we may run into ourselves in this normal, physical plane. They also are said to have traits and abilities not observed and accepted by science, but are widely accepted in mythology.

Does the magical aspect of these animals exclude them from being "earth-based" animals as some like to define therians? Does that aspect put some into their own group, rather than simply being a different kind of the same species?

Your thoughts please.
2008-09-08 21:51
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Seraphyna
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Post: #2
Re: Any difference?
To me, a kitsune takes on a fox form as an inugami takes on a dog form. Neither are the animal proper. To me, being a therian involves the biological animal. If it doesn't have X type of animal DNA it isn't an earthly animal and is thus not therian material.

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"All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream."-Poe
2008-09-08 23:41
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Post: #3
Re: Any difference?
Seraphyna Wrote:To me, a kitsune takes on a fox form as an inugami takes on a dog form. Neither are the animal proper. To me, being a therian involves the biological animal. If it doesn't have X type of animal DNA it isn't an earthly animal and is thus not therian material.

Now, why do you say they are not the animal itself, and instead it's a form?
2008-09-09 0:20
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Post: #4
Re: Any difference?
Because they are technically more along the lines of demons as they are "magical" and energetic beings of a more chaotic nature. Physical foxes cannot shapeshift. Kitsune can, as they are spirits in the form of a fox. The inugami is the spirit of a dog made malicious by its owners treatment.

A fox proper is a physical animal. It has biology and with it DNA. Kitsune do not, nor do Inugami. Though inugami are closer to being physical animals as they are the product of what the dog soul takes on after death.

[Image: seraphyna11_zps47e1e313.png]
"All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost."-Tolkien
"All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream."-Poe
2008-09-09 0:51
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Post: #5
Re: Any difference?
Ooooh I can't wait until I finally finish writing that paper on foxes.

You are right about that though, the spiritual forms are more like demons (and maybe angels, since some do have similar roles). A spirit in the form of a fox would be like what you said, and those are usually the dangerous ones (except for the servant foxes, which are helpful). But, oftentimes the foxes in stories are rather mundane and relatively weak, merely creating illusions to make a victim think they're one thing or another. Once the illusions are broken, an actual physical body of the fox is found, either dead or alive. That's the usual situation, and the one I was thinking of when I wrote this (which is why I put in visual shapeshifting, not physical).

In that case, would the fox who happens to also have "magical" abilities still be a fox, or are they then a totally different species? I do agree on the inugami part though.
2008-09-09 1:25
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Post: #6
Re: Any difference?
A fox with magical powers isn't an "earthly creature" as per the definition of therian (the most widely accepted one anyhow). Any fox that can create visual illusians is more than just a fox. It's a kitsune, which is a different breed of being from a fox you'd see in, say, the forests of Canada.

[Image: seraphyna11_zps47e1e313.png]
"All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost."-Tolkien
"All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream."-Poe
2008-09-09 1:36
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Post: #7
Re: Any difference?
Makes sense, I can agree with that.
2008-09-09 1:45
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Post: #8
Re: Any difference?
To me the main interesting question is why people all of a sudden seem a little hyper about listing what does and what does not count as "therian", totally without context.

Ubi Dubium, Ibi Libertas

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2008-09-09 21:31
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Post: #9
Re: Any difference?
*shrugs* I'm not asking whether or not they're therians (and I did mention in another thread how loose I am with the definition), I'm asking whether or not they're still the same animal as what their name and form implies. If people jump to the therian definition debate that's just them.
2008-09-09 22:05
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Post: #10
Re: Any difference?
IMO something that sometimes looks like a fox, but is also as intelligent as a human (or more so), can shapeshift into human form, and can perform other magical feats, is clearly not a fox in the first place - just something that sometimes looks like one.

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2008-09-09 22:30
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