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Identity evolution
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Identity evolution
Alright, I'm just going to start writing here and if I need to move the post due to topical considerations, I'll move it. This is just one of those things where I'm not sure what's actually going to come out of me before I start to write.

About a month ago I "came out" to my parents about the basic parts of my Personal Mythology (that is, without most of the ruminations about "soul-eating" and etc., which could have been the effect of my brain not working right), within the context of shamanic initiation. I did just today put "alloy-conduit" under my Kintype, though that is probably kind of cryptic to people who don't know me. <!-- sSmile --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_smile.gif" alt=":)" title="Smile" /><!-- sSmile --> (I've had a longstanding identification with cyborgs, due to my situation, though I think the trope is a bit...primitive.) I talk about it in backposts, but basically, I feel like I merged with another spirit when I was about 17, and that this basically changed the trajectory of my life from that point forward. It didn't feel like it, initially...but fast-forward two or three years and I find myself identifying as male in order to avoid massive rage at my situation as female, which was coming out in seething anger categorically directed at most males, the exceptions being family (none of whom I saw on a regular basis during that time).

Of course, though, I was also fairly vulnerable in that I was living away from my parents for the first time in my life, and I've been repeatedly told by a number of different people throughout my life, online and off, in-person and not, that I'm extremely psychically sensitive. So it is actually possible that what I was experiencing at that time was not really "me," but rather a spirit I picked up on that was influencing me. (I'm not sure if he's really around or not, anymore -- in any case, he hasn't bothered me and hasn't been intrusive; in the past he's served as guardian to me -- this is the spirit who identifies with demons.) I find that to be more likely at this point than anything...the campus I was at was known for having a strong lesbian community, though where it came to trans* issues, it wasn't really all that great. (They weren't really great at intersectional politics either [actually they failed at it], but that's a different story.)

Things didn't really start to come together for me until I made it a point to 1) recognize that the spirits I felt around me actually were there (instead of questioning my sanity every time I'd get a spirit communication, and refusing to let myself consider the possibility that what I experience may be real), and 2) when I assented to complete the merger that happened when I was 17, to quiet the constant-back-and-forth and maintenance of separate identities. I think these things actually happened two to three years apart, but I've actually been wrong on that timeline before. I know it's been four years total since I agreed to myself to believe in my spirits, and that basically jump-started the process of my getting better (I have a mental health issue going on which I feel probably is related to my experiences, but I don't think it excuses them). In the process I was able to view the multiple "voices" (I don't hallucinate them, they just pop up as thoughts) in my head as something not necessarily generated by my brain itself -- that is, I'm likely a medium, not multiple.

In any case...I did explain the basics of this to my mom and dad on the way home from work one day. I'm not certain anymore of the precise information I related, but I was told to "write it down," multiple times. I am not sure what I actually did with that advice...it could have been what I posted here and then erased. As for gender, I've settled into a place which I call "gender-fluid," but in practicality...my gender is visibly "queer" (to use the term in the reclaimed American sense); thus, "genderqueer" is an apt description for where I'm at. It's not anything I'm really trying for; it just kind of happens.

Why am I writing this? Well, it will help the new people get up to speed on what's actually going on with me, if they're wondering -- without reading all the backposts. I'm also kind of wondering about the evolution gone through by those who identify as (or at one time did identify as) otherkin. For instance, when I was first in the community, sometime around 12 or so years ago, I identified strongly as demonic, but I didn't really know what that meant or why it was there or what to do with it. At this point I have an explanation for the feelings of being demonic, because now I know that not all thoughts and actions which are transmitted through and into this body are "my" own. In all likelihood, the upset voice who said that "I" (as Blaze) couldn't transition the body to male because the body was not "my" own (as Blaze), was right -- although at this point, I am a different "I" than the one to which I referred prior. Blaze, in other words, is not the same as my current self, with the only caveat being that he is myself inasmuch as I am anyone else.

That kind of explodes the issue of trying to find a stable identity, especially as I consider it a high likelihood that individuality is an illusion.

That doesn't mean at all that we have to try to be like each other, as that would assume that formative experiences and separate biologies and (multiple)life histories don't matter, and they do. They do, profoundly: in my philosophy, all the diversity in life on the planet is the result of differing causes and conditions of formation. That in turn implies that we all have differing causes and conditions; that life comes at each of us differently depending on our capabilities, our presences and appearances, how we're socially contextualized because of our appearances and our actions and how that affects how we're treated, which affects our responses, etc. At the same time, though, I feel we share the same spiritual root cause, which is my reasoning as to why what others would call my imagination has the capacity to imagine into being virtually anyone (who makes internal sense), and why it is possible for me to see the root cause of myself in all that surrounds me. Or, maybe my mirror neurons are working overtime, or in some different capacity than normal, you know? <!-- sSmile --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_smile.gif" alt=":)" title="Smile" /><!-- sSmile -->

So I break down the imagination/reality dyad into something that really...doesn't have that whole untruth/truth type of thing to it. Reality can appear dreamlike (derealization); imagination can appear real (hallucination and illusion). If one doesn't have my brain chemistry, one might not have the experience to know this; but I basically have had to reset my attitude toward my experience so that I question everything, even input which seems like it's coming from outside my body. I can be completely wrong about something and not realize it, except for one quiet voice which seems like it's way in the back of my mind under the floorboards and almost too small to hear. But nor can anyone else tell me what reality actually is. All they can do is tell me what they see, and what seems reasonable.

At the same time, from having done what now seems like minor research into shamanism while at University -- it's known that people who were selected to be shamans have been categorized with brains similar to my own.

All that said to say: I'm not certain that the otherkin paradigm is set up *in response to* a solid paradigm. It's like setting up homosexuality in opposition to heterosexuality, when, even though obligatory in many cultures, it's possible pure heterosexuality may not exist.

I mean, I know that most people probably never give a second thought to the idea that their soul matches their body and their personality and that they're unique and when they die they're going to go someplace exactly the same way as they were in life... And if that were true, there might be some currency to the idea that one's soul doesn't match one's form. Poetically, it makes sense. It made a lot of sense when I was questioning whether I was trans* male, and I still have an energy body that I feel suits me more than my flesh form does (it changes though!). But really, is it that unusual to feel one is not human? Do humans in general "feel like" they're human? Is it normal to be entirely complacent in the idea that the way one looks is who and what one is down to one's core? Not just for show, but for real -- do people on the whole actually *have* strong identities as "human"? If so, is that trained, or innate?

I don't know. Nor do I really know, at this point, whether it's an anomaly to identify as something other than what one would be said to be. After all, it has been said, by some people (whom I shall avoid attacking here, though they probably merit it), that issues such as homosexuality and transsexuality are the result of demonic influence. Granted that we place differing valuations on the term, "demon," (having identified with demons, I do not have a wholly negative concept of them) and I would not call all of my spirits "demonic." In essence, they are only "demonic" by fact of being out of the control of those who call them "demonic."

But in my case at least -- at least subjectively, and in-regard-to the gender issues specifically, there was some amount of validity to the concept. At the least, I can say that the part of me who sought to change my body was not a part of me that was well-integrated with the rest of my psyche. Now that does have the very strong possibility of having been *caused* by the ostracism I got because of being gender-nonconforming, which in turn was assisted by the "you're under the influence of demons" narrative. Or it could have been that I was just overshadowed by a spirit for years. For years, he cared for my body and life when I couldn't care for myself. But my body ultimately wasn't his -- and it took me even more years after that, literally, to figure out what was going on.

I'm much more stable at this point I've found, at which I am really apparently neither wholly male or female (though I do still get the annoying "taper your sideburns, it's more feminine" speeches from barbers. What I've found though is that NO ONE CARES if my sideburns are squared off, except the barbers). There's some peace to it that was not there when I was questioning whether I was a transsexual man. I'm pretty sure at this point that this is because I *am not* a transsexual man, not that being a trans* man is categorically wrong. It's just not who I am. And nor can I speak for all trans* men when I relate my own story of feeling that there may have been something paranormal going on with me which triggered my symptoms, you know? If I'm not a trans* man, I can't speak for them.

But in my case, at least, there was something more going on underneath the surface than there at first appeared to be; and this directly relates to identity. In the case of this forum, I found out that I'm just very intuitive and sensitive, but probably not a demon, even though I've identified with them in the past (which in turn may have been due to [an unseen] someone else's influence). I've also found out that there's a lot going on that I wasn't aware of, prior. I began this post wondering if others have been in situations like this, where they have been identified as otherkin in the past but now attribute their experiences to other causes and conditions. <!-- sSmile --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_smile.gif" alt=":)" title="Smile" /><!-- sSmile --> I don't expect to get a lot of hits, but at least I thought I'd put it out there. I feel like it's possible that people aren't active here because they don't feel like they're "real otherkin," but that...that concept needs to be unpacked, I think...
2014-12-25 8:43
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