Writer Danny Smith shares this interview he conducted with an “otherkin”. I couldn’t help but to notice that the ‘kin states that he worships Corellon, God of the Elves – a deity created for the Dungeons & Dragons role-playing game. Seems like an odd choice, but I suppose if you’re having “flashbacks” of a past-life battle with orcs and describe your “real” self as looking suspiciously like Orlando Bloom’s portrayal of Legolas in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings, it stands to say that anything goes. I suppose we all build a personal mythology during the course of our lives, and believing that you’re an elf trapped in a human’s body is no more or less ridiculous than anything else offered by the world’s major religions.
What are Otherkin?
The Otherkin are human-bodied individuals who feel themselves to be, in an essential sense, non-human. Their Innate Species Persona (ISP) might be a mundane, familiar animal, such as a wolf, a cat, or penguin – even a highly unfamiliar being like an elf/faerye, demon, or angel not recognised as having even existed by narrow-minded scientists like Stephen Hawkins. ISP’s are named as elfkin, demonkin, felinekin, and so on. Some misinterpret their ISP, so they might during the course of their lives appear to change their ISP; I knew one Otherkin who changed from a wolfkin to a jackalkin; this does not represent an actual change of their ISP, but instead a change of their interpretation to something that better suits them.
Our mission is to gain acceptance in the same way the transgendered community are slowly gaining acceptance amongst the SWM (straight white male) establishment. This analogy is strengthened by the fact that some ‘kinned-individuals actually resort to surgery to become physically closer to their ISP; this could be as simple as teeth-filing or ear modifications. Some are more extreme; I have spoken online to one Californian Felinekin who is actually attempting to surgically alter his penis to closer resemble that of a tom-cat, by enlarging the base (giving a tapering shape) and adding sharp ‘spikes’ that shoot out.
Yow! I’m hoping the lucky lady will appreciate it. Do Otherkin tend to date within the community? And their own ISP?
Sadly the life of the Otherkin is often lonely because our different natures often make it hard for us to connect with ‘normal’ people. Once a ‘kinsperson has started to get involved in the community relationships do start; sometimes an ‘outerkin’ relationship will be frowned on by certain ‘kin, for example a dark-elfkin going out with a light-elfkin would raise some eyebrows. We’re a tolerant bunch, though, so we try to let the healing power of love take its course.
How did you become involved with the Otherkin?
I have always felt myself to be different, non-human. At the age of five I started dreaming about being an elf in some ancient forest. I used to mark myself with crayons in strange, Celtic patterns. I told few of my secret, but at the age of 10 one of my ‘friends’ started spreading it around, leading to all sorts of horrible taunts: ‘freak’, ‘nutter’, ‘pixie wanker,’ the usual school yard bullying. I felt incredibly ashamed, and found adolescence really hard. When I was 17, I stumbled across a mention of the Otherkin in a magazine; I can’t quite remember which one, it was probably Bizarre or Fortean Times or something of that ilk. What they said seemed to match up so perfectly with my experiences, so I started browsing a few Otherkin websites (of which there weren’t many back then), and tentatively started networking with the ‘kin. Using certain meditation techniques only known by members of the ‘kin, I have been able to regress to my previously lost memories of being a Daonine-Sithe (pron. ‘thenena shee’ in the original Gaelic) elf, hence why I presently call myself a Sithekin.
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