The Modern Therian Community
What does “Therian” mean?
“Therian” is the shortened form of “therianthrope”. “Therianthrope” is the general form of “lycanthrope”. A lycanthrope, of course, is a Werewolf. But not every Therian is “wolf”, hence the need for a general term.
It’s rather unfortunate that the first image most people have when they hear “werewolf” is that of a fictional monster from movies and books. But the fiction was inspired by a truth. Before the 15th century there were Werewolves and now, again, there are Werewolves.
What I know (what I have observed in the Therian Community).
Some time in the 20th century (or before), some people began realizing, as children, that there was something different about them. They lived life more intentionally, paid more attention to what was going on around them, were more empathic, and felt as though they did not quite fit in with the people around them. On the other hand, they identified very well with various nonhuman animals – often to the point of conceptualizing themselves as nonhuman.
But they were not dysfunctional. On the average, they got along well with their families, they had friends, they succeeded in school, many worked for themselves, many worked for others, and they were happy and well adjusted. But they were unique, as far as they knew, and they kept their differences a secret.
November 16, 1992, a Usenet Newsgroup was founded for fans of horror movies so that they could discuss werewolf movies – it was called alt.horror.werewolves or AHWW. Soon, the administrators noticed that the discussions had turned from movies to the members’ private lives. The Weres had found each other.
I have noticed that in the groups of Therians that I have been associated with, they seem to have certain predispositions, such as a high incidence of an unusual tooth form called “shovel teeth” and a tendency toward autoimmune disorders and migraines.
What they tell me (what I’ve read).
Before the Werewolf Trials of the later Middle Ages when thousands of mentally ill or simply despised people were tortured to death by the Inquisition for being “werewolves”, there really were people known as “werewolves”. Far from being insane, they were respected in their communities. They even had a special position in the church – they were called the Dogs of God and Saint Peter’s Wolves. Traditions of these non-monstrous werewolves remain today in Eastern Europe.
What I think (My opinion – it’s not the only one around).
There are many diverse explanations for therianthropy. My own belief is that Therians are a genetic continuation of the old Weres who have awakened due to population and environmental pressures in modern society.
The Time Line
I have been digging through dusty old research libraries and downloading snippets of information about therianthropy for about 40 years. This time line is a result of the historical data I have collected.
The study of the history of the Therian Community is more like archeology than history. Much information was lost during the Inquisition. Information survived better in areas where the Roman Catholic Church had not gained a strong foothold. The British Isles and Northern and Eastern Europe remain rich in Therian lore – those places are also where most actual history survives.
Like archeology, in the study of Therian history, all that exist are, for the most part, fragments and hints. No individual fragment can be trusted. Each individual piece must be validated and interpreted by noting its place in known history and its relationship to the other pieces. As fragments stack up, patterns become evident, picture emerge.
And like any history, this one must continuously be revised as new information appears.
Who am I?
My name is Payton Wolf Bailey VanZandt. As an advocate for the Therian Community, I do not use web names. I don’t keep my therianthropy a secret.
I am a Werewolf who lives in Colorado in the United States. Before I retired, I organized events for the Southeast Howl. I also provided other services to the Therian Community, including this site.
I am a retired vocational evaluator. I have been a Christian evangelist who worked mostly with fringe societies in the United States. I was a founding member of the local Christian Motorcyclists Association chapter when I lived in Selma, Alabama. I performed much community volunteer service with the church, the Boy Scouts, and the local Department of Human Resources. I was also a founding member of the Citizens Against Violence.
I can be contacted at:
11/18/22 The Stat Files has a new page about Handling Data and I’ve included a recipe for chili on the Werewolf Gourmet page.
9/22/22 There is some new material in the Introduction section of the Astronomy LabBook, the most important being a timeline of astronomy.
8/19/22 I have added information to the Physics LabBook about line orientation and angles.
6/21/22 The DANSYS Users Guide now has a section on Content Analysis.
3/8/22 I have added the Astronomy LabBook to the Excursion section. It currently has information about what astronomy is, it’s history and how to use the equipment commonly used by amateur astronomers.
1/21/22 There is now a section on angles and some exercises in geometric constructions in the Physics LabBook.
1/21/22 Code, the on-spreadsheet programming language in DANSYSX now has the capability to recalculate a range of cells anywhere on the Code programming sheet. In cooperation with branching and looping capabilities, that provides a major boost to Code’s processing power including iterative programming. The programming guide on the LabBooks page tells how to use it.
1/20/22 I have added a brief section under Therian Society about how society affects therian health (primarily a couple of suggestions for further study.)
7/20/21 After a year and a half of work, I have finished the first three sheets of the Physics LabBook and have placed a link in the LabBooks section of Excursions. The first two pages are short introductions to physics. The third is an in depth exploration of measurements, precision, graphing, points, and position. There are lots of hands on activities.
2/23/21 I have added a section to the Were Society page concerning religion from a sociological perspective.
2/18/21 There is now a section in the DANSYS user guide about time series analysis. DANSYS isn’t a heavy hitter in this area but it does add some functionality to that already in LibreOffice Calc. The user guide explains how to get the most out of DANSYS in this area. Hopefully, I will be able to add much more advanced time series tools into DANSYSX in the future.