Revisiting How to Become a Werewolf

One of the most popular pages on any of my Web sites is the one where I posted the spell on how to become a werewolf. I can especially see it spike when a popular new book or movie involving werewolves is set to come out. The last Underworld movie, for instance, brought a lot of traffic, and with New Moon coming soon, things are heating up again. Why? What is it about becoming a werewolf that inspires people to want to be one?

I think there are basically two main reasons people want the Gift of Lycanthropy. The first is the same thing that drove Dr. Jekyll to find Mr. Hyde — the desire to tap into an alter ego and perform actions that won’t be associated with our “real” personality. These actions could be as benign as simply finally ignoring the homeless guy at the underpass and not giving him our last dollar, to actually eating him. Either way, it’s because we feel like there is something else inside of us, and sometimes we don’t want to be polite. Sometimes we want to show our fangs and chase poeple away. Sometimes we just want to do bad things because we’re tired of being held back by The Man, The Spouse, or whatever it is repressing us.

Then there’s the feeling that we’ve become soft living in civilization. We want to “get back to nature” in a way that Thoreau never imagined. We don’t want to lie on our belly and watch the ants work, we want to actually become a part of nature, to run with the speed of the wolf, smell the woods with heightened senses, hear the gurgling of streams and sit out with our pack at night and sing to the moon without worrying about someone sending us to the loony bin.

That’s what I think. What about you? Why do you think the werewolf has remained so alluring for so many centuries?

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