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By Dreaming Wolf (a.k.a. Wolf Shamen)

1. Introduction

Throughout history, human beings have associated with animals on many levels beyond mere existence. They have always been a source of friendship, amazement, food, comfort and sometimes amusement to us.... and yet they remain a mystery that even the incredible human mind cannot fully unfold. Or can it?

For as far back as records go, there has been some sort of belief in life after death. Of course, when one steps beyond the box of reality and looks at the natural balance that the universe maintains, it certainly becomes a topic worthy of pondering. Even some of the most strict religions in the world today at least have a few texts that speak of it....

The Bible-----
"10 The disciples asked him, “Why then do the teachers of the law say that Elijah must come first?”

11 Jesus replied, “To be sure, Elijah comes and will restore all things. 12 But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and you did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands.” 13 Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist"

The Koran----
"And you were dead, and He brought you back to life. And He shall cause you to die, and shall bring you back to life, and in the end shall gather you unto Himself." (2:28)"

These are just to name a couple, and any research into ANY religion (save the ones who say nothing at all about it) will in some way refer to reincarnation.

Which brings me to the point of the matter, or rather the question: What would it be like if animals reincarnated into higher life forms, say humans? Well the truth is, they do. Enter Therians.

2. Therians

My name is Dreaming Wolf (Wolf Shamen if you're a Second Lifer), and I am a Wolf Therian. What exactly is a Therian, you may ask?

Well, there are many answers to that question, but simply put.... a Therian is a reincarnated animal soul, spirit or entity that has "landed" in a human body.
If your new to the idea of reincarnation, this might seem a little far-fetched at the moment. The question you need to be asking yourself is: Why not?

To take the question and answer a step further.... there are many "types" of Therians out there (see Types for more information). For example, some people may have only had a single life as an animal, while others will have spent their entire existence(s) as one up until now!

In any case, therians usually find themselves on the outside of society. They act differently than normal humans, in a unique way that differs from therian to therian. Therefore, there isn't any specific set of actions or traits that make you a therian. Which brings us to our next topic.

3. Who's a Therian?

So now comes the big question. Maybe you were drawn to this article because you're a therian yourself, whether you know it or not. Maybe you know someone who you think is a therian, or maybe you're a human and just curious! All of the above are wonderful, just remember to keep an open mind. Some pretty crazy stuff is about to happen.

To Therians:
Firstly, being a therian doesn't make someone "cool" or "magical". Being a therian means that you have an opportunity to share wisdom that's inside of you with others, or embark on a path of self-discovery. It means that you can live a more fulfilling life once you understand why you do the things you do, and it's a step forward to understanding the biggest mystery of all.... life.

To Humans:
Having knowledge about therians is a wonderful stepping stone into the world you live in! It will help you to identify with the many therians living among us already, while at the same time opening your mind to more possibilities. Suddenly, weird people won't seem so weird anymore. ;)

On to the topic! Who's a therian? Well, technically anybody could be a therian.... the guy in the checkout line, the kid with bright blue eyes, or the teenager in the bookstore. The harsh reality is that they probably don't know it, or don't care.

Therians often experience fond feelings of love or connectivity with their animal. For example, if you're a fox, maybe you want to see a fox in real life, or you might feel the urge to study them. You will probably be adaptable to situations, taking what you need to survive and fighting back when needed. You could have an attitude that draws everyone in, a charmer of a sort.

Most of the time, therians are a storm of emotions and moderately easy to point out in a crowd once you get to know them. This is because, if you think about it, two very different minds are colliding in the same place at the same moment. A lot of times therians don't know who they are/want to be!

In the nutshell, there is really no definitive way of deciding if you're a therian. Suggestively, getting a past life regression (hypnosis) would help a LOT, but most of the time it isn't needed. There are some things you'll just "know".

4. My Story

The best way to understand what I've been talking about is to give you a classic example. This is my story.

It all started around the time when I was 10 years old. I don't remember too much, but my parents tell me that I was like a "little puppy" interested in everyone and everything. I was extremely intelligent for my age, but I didn't keep friends around easily. At one time, a friend of mine said I was weird and he didn't want to hang out with me anymore.

Anyway, I spend most of my childhood from age 10 to 13 exploring the woods in my area. I would create boundaries around certain parts of land and claim them as my own, where I would sit alone happily twirling leaves and twigs or building stick homes. The hilarious thing is that I would actually mark these territories in the... umm.... typical male fashion of marking things. If anyone crossed my boundary lines, I wouldn't get angry.... just a little uneasy.

These things were all normal to me, and continued until I hit 13.... when my mother found out about it and told me I wasn't supposed to do that. So, I quietly obeyed.

When I reached 14, new habits began to emerge. I started becoming defensive, growling at people when I was angry and letting out a high-pitched whine when I was content or depressed. My parents thought I was just going through a stage (at 14? Come on, honestly!). I'd always been a fan of the canine species, but wolves hadn't really crossed my mind at this point.

Still at 14, I started having some very real dreams about being a wolf. Sometimes the dreams were symbolic, but all of them pointed to me as a wolf. At this time I was a strict Christian who thought past lives were nonsense... that is, until my father found out about a hypnotherapist doing past life regressions in Virginia Beach. I was skeptical, but curious.

To make a long story short, the session pushed me ahead a step. I discovered much about past lives, but not enough to convince me just yet.

Age 15, my habits continued and more arose. I developed a chewing problem, ruining over 40 sets of earphone wires, hundreds of bottle caps and I still have a fingernail issue. I suddenly acquired a profound love for wolves and began drawing them.

Age 15 and 1/2. I experienced my first set of visions. I was riding shotgun with my father on our way to town for groceries when a gust of wind hit the back of my neck. Somehow, this triggered a memory. My vision went totally white, as if I was blinded, and I saw a field of flowers, green grass and a mountain range. Something between my eyes was blocking my line of sight... I now know this was my nose (or, muzzle). This all occurred within a split second.

Age 15 and 2/3. I was going to the mailbox when what I can only describe as a mind switch took place. 3 whole seconds passed (at least that's what I suppose), and within those seconds 3 thoughts crossed the new mind: Who am I? Where am I? Why am I so high up? I was stunned after that, confused and even more so, curious.

Age 15 3/3 (4 months before my birthday). I had a dream that I was a wolf living with my pack in a forest area. My rank in the pack was the Nurse (pup caretaker), but for me it was a conflicting position. Any male wolf naturally aspires to become pack leader one day, but Nurses are only chosen because of their actual love for the pups. Swirling emotions, I left the pack followed by a band of about 4 - 5 other wolves. We traveled through the mountains until we reached a fairly large river, where we drank. I woke up, but I knew that it was more than a dream.

I came to the conclusion that I was a reincarnated wolf soul, but I had never even heard of therianthropy! The funny thing is, for some reason I didn't even consider the possibility that there were others out there like me. When I did find out, 3 months later on the internet, I was shocked... and now a firm believer.

Age 16. After my discovery, new experiences started flowing in, almost like an invitation to understanding. I discovered that I had the ability to "mental shift" (see Mental Shifting), changing between my human mind and my wolf's. My habits became harder to control, and to the amusement of my friends I found myself tripping over my own feet in an effort to catch small animals.

I learned that I could also sense when other therians were nearby or around me, which was surprising. Suddenly I was plunged into a world where anything was possible and everything was suddenly clear at the same time.

At 17, I was slowly beginning to understand more and more about who I was, and about the people around me. The world was suddenly thrown open like a giant book to admire, scrutinize and read. Therians were being drawn to me in real life and even in video games, opening up and telling me their life story for no apparent reason. This was one of the things that drove me to become a mentor.

I recall one of the experiences I had at this age which still amazes me to this day. I was standing in line at the grocery store behind a lady who had a little baby girl in the seat of her shopping cart. She must have only been around 3 years old, and her constant piercing stare was making me a little uneasy. Finally after about 5 minutes of staring, she turned to her mother, pointing at me, "Mommy, mommy, look at the doggy!" I must have checked myself dozens of times to make sure I was wearing something "dog" or "wolf". I didn't... Go figure.

This was also the age that I had my final vision, this time while in the driver's seat! I was on a country road when my vision went blurry (not white, whew!). I saw an "overlay" of the road in front of me, and 5 or so wolves ran across in front of the car. I never tried to stop, but my arms locked up.... luckily I was on a straight road. I turned to my mother and made a bet: That there was a river, a large one, in a a westerly direction (the direction the wolves were running in my vision). She laughed but said we would look it up on Map Quest or Google Earth when we got home.

What did we find? The largest river within 40 miles. When I saw pictures of the river, it was the EXACT same one from my dream.

Finally, age 18. At 18 I met my spirit guide, Alex, who helping me better understand my unseeable side. I discovered that I've had 48 past lives, 27 animal lives, and 25 wolf lives. My experiences slowed to a minimum and all but faded, and yet the world remains open and ready.

5. Mental Shifting

Often known as "M. Shifting", it shouldn't be confused with P. Shifting (Physical Shifting). Mental Shifting is when a therian transitions from their human mind into their animal's. Sometimes that animal's attributes are noticeable, such as improved smell, hearing or taste.

Personally, my smelling and hearing improves slightly and I feel like I've just drank 18 cups of coffee. Other people say it makes them tired, while still others don't feel anything at all.

Controlling mental shifting is as simple as energy manipulation. Energy follows thought... easy, right? A problem I've only run into once is being unable to get out of a mental shift, but after a while it goes away. We're still human in the flesh. =3

6. Overactive Roleplayers

There are some folks out there in the roleplaying sector who seem to think because they RP as a wolf, play as a wolf, and hang out with people who do similar things... that it makes them a wolf (or another animal). Therians call these people Overactive RPers, and they are exactly what the name implies. They're easy to spot, most of them come up with fantastic or epic stories of how they were a lone wolf on a quest of vengeance to save the princess from the evil monsters... no wait, that's Mario. Same thing?

Not much more I need to say about these guys. Don't let them fool you, don't give them fuel.

7. Furries + Therians = Ferians?

I'm not sure if I coined the term "Ferian", but it seems to fit this genre.

Don't be too alarmed by these furry cosplayers, they don't mean anybody harm... even to the therians. In fact, I'm a member of the furry fandom myself. Why? Think about it... I have an excuse to go outside with a tail!

Therians are always looking for better ways to connect more with their animal. The Native Americans found their connections within eagles, bears and other wildlife... so they dressed up as that particular animal and danced the night away! The furry fandom pretty much offers the same thing, but in a larger, more public arena.

Again, I have to point out... why not? If it's not your thing, it doesn't mean your "out of the loop". Be yourself; so many therians fail in that area.

7. Types of Therians

Last but certainly not least, I want to share the types of therians I've run into so far. Keep in mind that there are probably more types than these, and that I only speak from personal experience:

Type 1: These therians are pretty simple. Their very first life was as their animal. After that they have had various other lives, but never the same as their first... These therians seem to know where they're going and what they're doing. Their animal traits are displayed more as a complement to their life than a hindrance.

Type 2: Therians in this section are like a step up from Type 1. Their first life may not have been their animal's, but they've had MANY lives scattered around as that specific animal. For example, let's say a rabbit therian has 1 human life, 50 rabbit lives, 5 human lives... etc. Sheer number effects their whole existence.

Type 3: Finally, the light of the party, there's the therian who only had 1 life as their animal. It wasn't their first life, but it left such an impression on them that it affected any lives after that.

Of course, there are a large number of people who will have combinations of these 3 types. In the end though, they all share similar attributes.

8. Closing

So here we are at the end, which we can consider the beginning as well! Now it's time for you to get your own information...... browse the web, meet new people, look inside yourself and open your mind.

If you have any comments/suggestions for this article, please feel free to send me a message here on SL (remember, I'm Wolf Shamen).

Also, if you have a question or just want to talk, I beg of you.... please contact me or talk to someone! Don't be afraid to ask questions or let out some steam; being afraid won't do you any good.

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