The Paranormal

Treasure Hunting: Paranormal Style

Beads were my treasure here; I love things in little jars too. :)
Beads were my treasure here; I love things in little jars too. 🙂

I consider myself something of a treasure hunter. I love nothing better than hunting through thrift stores, second hand shops, and garage sales. I tingle with glee at the notion of an “emporium” (wonderful things when they deliver on the name, but beware of those who thought it was a good name, but are not “real” emporiums). With delight and pride I show off my “treasures” that I’ve gotten – always better if they were an exceptionally good deal – and can’t wait to find my next one.

Now, I’m pretty good at spotting the finds. But some supernatural powers might help.

Take the demon Seere. If you want or need something – whether it be things you’ve lost or treasures never before seen – he’s the demon for you, since that’s his particular speciality. Best of all, he’s in the transportation game too, so he can deliver! Although a powerful prince, he’s indifferent to good natured. He might be your guy.

Next we have the Kazna Peri, a demon who’s name means “Treasure Devil” in folk believes of the Cheremis / Mari people of the former Soviet Union. Now, technically he won’t happily lead you to the treasure, since he has a nasty tendency of hoarding and guarding his treasure until it lifts from the ground so he can roast it over a blue flame for some tasty eats. If you’re lucky enough to take his place before he eats all the treasure between Whitsuntide (seven weeks after Easter) and Midsummer’s Day (usually June 24), it’s all yours! Then again, something that eats roasting and potentially molten treasure, well, can we say big teeth and a potentially fire-proof disposition?

And of course, who can neglect a classic like the good old Leprechaun? Beware though, whether you’ve captured this fellow and interrupted his shoe-mending, he can be tricky and the whole pot-of-gold thing could be just stories. The leprechaun loves to play tricks, merely pretending to tell you where the gold is, when all the while he’s leading you on.

Unfortunately, many paranormal creatures like the Brownie or other household spirits and creatures tend only to give luck and good fortune to their household owners. And the rest? Well, they seem to be more into eating the treasure or keeping it out of human hands. Myself? I think I’ll stick with thrift shops and my own eyes-for-a-deal super power.

What about you? Are you a treasure hunter? What supernatural powers would you look for to help on your search? Heard of any good paranormal creatures with an eye for treasure?

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The Paranormal

Weird Wednesday: Luideag, the Rag

Check out all the free scans of historic etchings, like this one of two beggar women from “Callot’s Etchings” (1635)

Today we feature a nasty female demon named Luideag.

From Scottish Highland folklore (specifically out of the Isle of Skye), she’s an evil demon who’s name means “The Rag.” She took the form of a human woman dressed in ragged and worn clothing, with the not-so-pleasant intent of causing the death of any human within her power.  (From: Spirits, Fairies, Leprechauns, and Goblins: An Encyclopedia by Carol Rose.)

What I find particularly interesting about this legend is that she’s quite similar to some legends about the Morrigan, one of the more powerful fairy queens of legend, and sometimes associated with the King Arthur Legend. Like Luideag, the Morrigan sometimes disguised herself as an old washerwoman at the side of a river, washing the clothes of the soldiers who would die there. Obviously quite creepy for the soldiers passing by her.

The disguise as a woman in rags seems to reference the general fear of the poor – and especially old women who might turn out to be riches. Perhaps there is some hint that because she’s poor and in rags, there is something inherently threatening about her. If she is ragged and dirty, she is diseased. If she’s diseased, it’s probably something you can catch just by being near her – especially with the lack of understanding related to disease transmission prior to around the mid-nineteenth century.

The fiction writer in me wonders, what’s this demon’s story?

Demons themselves, while we commonly accept today as “evil,” were not always so. Instead, some of what we consider “angels” could have fallen into this category, simply a different category of demons that tried to help humanity (or at least not cause them harm.) But, I digress.

So, what makes this demon kill those she has within her power? Is she simply hungry for power over someone, anyone? Has she gotten some bad press after a few of her friends died horrible, tragic deaths? Why doesn’t her name show up in the other mythology books? Is this just a pseudonym for the Morrigan (now THERE is a woman with a story!)?

I also wonder about the impact of this creature who is largely a scary female demon. While this particular creature doesn’t seem to attack specifically men (and there are plenty who do, especially wielding feminine wiles), there is something significant about her being female. Is she more frightening because she is female? Going back to the historical fear of old women who might be witches, or the general fear of disease, is this what makes her frightening? Would this demon have been as frightening a legend had it disguised itself as a little old man? Although with mortality rates and men historically dying younger, is it more likely that you’d find an old woman rather than an old man?

What do you think? What’s this demon’s story?

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What do you think?