Truth is not defined by how many people believe in something, and truth always begins somewhere.
There was a time, perhaps an ancient time, when people...more Truth is not defined by how many people believe in something, and truth always begins somewhere.
There was a time, perhaps an ancient time, when people were more open to the universal truths plainly presented by other denizens of this domain and were respectful of the truths offered from the living planet itself that we live on.
But I think that over time, those once obvious and critical truths have become lost or forgotten; the vast majority of humans became arrogant while the humble became a minority.
Perhaps this human arrogance was built from different foundations relating to power, intellect, lineage or status, and maybe even arrogance sprouted from the most obscure traits or situations, but in any matter, the modern human ability for condescending dismissal, impatience, and outright neglect has led to a pandemic of narrow-mindedness that causes humans to forget that we were always just guests here.
Whole societies were built by people who decided they knew all the truths there was to know.
But again, truth is not defined by how many people believe in something...
Like this book's author (Nick Redfern), wildly popular novelist Charles Dickens was also fascinated by all things paranormal and having a lifelong passion for the uncanny himself, once wrote:
"Phantoms! Whenever I think I fully understand mankind's purpose on earth, just when I foolishly imagine that I have seized upon the meaning of life... suddenly I see phantoms dancing in the shadows, mysterious phantoms performing a gavotte that says, as pointedly as words, 'What you know is nothing, little man; what you have to learn, immense.' "
And I think this is a quote that summarizes Nick Redfern's "Monster Diary" book perfectly.
This is a highly readable presentation showing that there is a strange and steady flow of remarkable mystery and phenomena that is happening for relevant reasons that push us towards unknown, but perhaps, inevitable destinations.
In MONSTER DIARY, the ever-learning reader gets (re)acquainted with truths, conjectures and possibilities that could answer some of the strange and sinister experiences that people are and have been reporting across the world for centuries such as apparitional creatures, ghostly projections, giant flying "things", and giant eels. But there's also a whole lot more strange phenomena to absorb.
The conventional (or stubborn) thinker who seeks a "tangible" breakdown or interpretation of mysterious experiences will probably not appreciate this book, however Nick Redfern has a straightforward, layman-friendly writing style which would immerse anyone interested in going beyond Cryptozoology, even perhaps past Fortean phenomena and delving deeper into a preternatural, more mystical domain and it really quite opens your eyes.
I felt I was part of the adventure of this avant-garde roadtrip, which made the pages go by quickly and enjoyably and I truly found it hard to put down.
One of the realisations you start to understand on the road with this author is that sometimes "things" -- ideas, beliefs, manifestations -- are allowed to take full control, and once that happens, they don't stop, they take their hold on popular culture, become such an integral, but taken for granted, part of society, whether most believe in it or not, they will always be there, with real force and power, and sometimes it only takes one believer for there to be no stopping it, because there's things out there that exist, whether you like it or not.
Just because something is elusive, or elusive to us, and just because something is so out of the realm that our minds are able or trained to comprehend, that just does not equal to delusion or imagining and it's incredibly arrogant to believe so.
People who fervently deny the existence of what they don't or can't understand seem, in my opinion, to be defined by a fear of "knowing" the "unknowable", but what's really worse, knowing or not knowing? Maybe the deniers subconciously believe that once a monster is known it cannot be unknown, and that's what keeps them in the herd, not wanting to deviate out of what's "safe" and familiar. But just how much of that reality is real?
Monster Diary: On the Road in Search of Strange and Sinister Creatures includes:
Chapter 1: Creatures of the Spectral Kind Chapter 2: Beware the Beast of Bodalog Chapter 3: The Great Eel Hunt Chapter 4: Winged Things of Wisconsin Chapter 5: The Monsters of Angel Fire Chapter 6: Sacrified Frogs and Stone-Faced Werewolves Chapter 7: The Curious Caper of the Cardiff Giant Chapter 8: Shape-Shifters and Creepy Camels Chapter 9: Chasing the Chupacabras Chapter 10: Owlmen Everywhere Chapter 11: The Taigheirm Terror Chapter 12: Slaughter in Dallas Chapter 13: Monsters and the Government Chapter 14: Ripping Yarns Chapter 15: Dead Heads, Demons, and a Damned Dam
A WARNING to those extremely sensitive regaurding animal mutilations/cruelty, chapters 11 and 12 deal candidly with this subject, with chapter 11 covering the Taigheirm, an ancient (and perhaps still practised) tradition of the "magical" sacrifice of cats, actually involving suffering and tortures that are quite maddening to comprehend, and chapter 12 specifically discussing a string of unsolved and equally gruesome animal cruelty cases targeting Dallas city felines that according to the SPCA and Dallas PD, have been happening around spring time every year since 2009 and do indicate the severe mental and physical pain, mutilations and killing of captured cats.
There are nefarious undercurrents everywhere you look, and often times in the places you purposely avoid looking. And you know why.
We do not know if, of all the beasts that may exist, that the inner evil of humans might be the worst monsters of them all, or if there is something out there that is far worse than what horrors humans can make, but it is factually undeniable that monsters ARE alive, and they live within this plane, as you will find out. Or maybe you already know.
I recommend this book for people who are tired of the interruptions and measured humiliations of arrogant humans who prefer to stay willfully ignorant and thus who dismiss the well cognizable "more" that is offered by this world. There is a voice here for those who have been up close and personal with things they don't quite understand, but know what's out there.
The truth always begins somewhere, and maybe it starts with "monsters". Yes, there are monsters. There's always been monsters. Maybe that's where we came from all along, because what we know is nothing; what we have to learn, immense.(less)
Author/Researcher Arlene Gaal is clearly passionate and dedicated to tracking the many sightings of the famous cryptid lake monster Ogopogo of British...more Author/Researcher Arlene Gaal is clearly passionate and dedicated to tracking the many sightings of the famous cryptid lake monster Ogopogo of British Columbia and to being a supporting voice for those individuals who have by most accounts, inadvertantly had the experience of encountering this largely elusive aquatic monster.
In her sincere efforts to help substantiate the claims of folks who come to her with their reports, she has accumulated an amazing amount of data over the past several decades in which she has exhaustively spent researching, documenting, interviewing witnesses and archiving records, photos and films.
Though she has penned a couple books prior to In Search of Ogopogo: Sacred Creature of the Okanagan Waters concerning the monstrous animal of gigantic proportions that purportedly inhabits Okanagan Lake, this particular book is the last one to date and plainly demonstrates why Miss Gaal is the unofficial expert and consultant on Ogopogo.
Noted cryptozoologist John Kirk of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club said that “The catalogue of films and video of Ogopogo are more numerous and of better quality than anything I have personally seen at Loch Ness and I believe that several of them are very persuasive that there is a large living unknown creature inhabiting the lake” (2005) and therefore, it is surmised that the Ogopogos could be some of the most credible of the world’s lake monsters.
Arlene Gaal has certainly put together a comprehensive volume rich with numerous accounts of the search for Canada's most famous lake cryptid including fascinating sightings from convincing witnesses that I had never heard of.
Gaal's writing style is a bit unconventional in that it's casual, though I attribute that to her exuberance for her subject. In Search also contains many eyewitness submitted illustrations of what they saw along with an introduction to the creature’s history and lore known in Indian traditions in which the beast is referred to as N’ha-a-itk meaning “water demon” or “lake monster”, so readers particularly interested in folklore and mythology will especially enjoy that section.
My summary -
PROS: Plethora of accounts with Ogopogos, many reports i'd never read before, Gaal presents serious and objective research while remaining conversational enough for the curious.
CONS: Published in 2001 it's somewhat dated. A tad unorganised and I really would have liked to see source citations for many of the reports presented as evidence.
WHAT I LIKED BEST: There is a really cool chronology from the 1700s to 2001 at the end.
Overall, I totally recommended this volume for both those who enjoy pleasure-reading about cryptids and for the more serious cryptozoology researcher and consider "In Search of Ogopogo" essential for lake monster research.(less)