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222 Paranormal Podcast

All things paranormal With your host Jennifer Shortridge & Joe Shortridge Brother and Sister duo Joe and Jen have been interested in all things paranormal since their childhood. We bring to you our personal experiences, news from the paranormal world and special guests.
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Now displaying: Page 1
May 7, 2023

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In this episode, we talk about Oceanic Legends and monsters.

Facing the open ocean can be terrifying. Miles from shore across storm-tossed seas, with nothing but water in all directions--including straight down--a sailor or fisherman cannot help but wonder what lurks in the depths. When the oceans were still unexplored, these fears often took the form of imaginary monsters.

Many sea monsters include features from living animals. A large tentacle becomes part of a monstrous sea serpent or many-armed kraken: The eye sees a fragment; the mind fills in the rest. A blend of tall tales, mistaken identity, and resonant cultural symbols, stories of sea monsters often reveal more about the minds of the imaginers than they do about the natural world.

According to sea monster myth and legends, the sea bishop or bishop-fish was caught and taken to the King of Poland, who showed it to a group of Catholic bishops. When the bishops released the creature, it made the sign of the cross before disappearing back under the waves.

The bishop-fish is a type of fish that looks like a man—specifically, like a Catholic bishop—while other variations include legends of the sea monk, a fish that looks like a monk. Later experts came to the conclusion that the sea monk was probably actually an Angel shark, a type of shark that is also known as a monkfish.

The bishop-fish made an appearance in the fourth volume of Conrad Gesner’s Historiae animalium, an “inventory of renaissance zoology,” as well as Johann Zahn’s Specula physico-mathematico-historica notabilium ac mirabilium sciendorum, and has been associated with the imagery of the half-human, half-fish sages known as Apkallu in ancient Mesopotamian mythology.

 

In Japan, these sea monsters were pure nightmare fuel for sailors who believed in the myths surrounding this creature. Umibōzu is a giant, shadowy, humanoid-like monster who terrorizes sailors who are unlucky enough to cross paths with it during a voyage. Upon encountering the creature, what was once a beautiful day with calm waters immediately turns into thunderous chaos with harsh waves and never-ending rain.

According to Japanese mythology, when an Umibōzu appears, they will either immediately attack a ship and drown its crew, or ask for a barrel from the ship’s supply as an offering. If the crew complies with the creature’s demand, sometimes the Umibōzu will spare the ship. But in order to ensure a safe travel away from the sea monster, sailors say that giving the Umibōzu a bottomless barrel will leave the creature confused, giving the ship and its crew an opportunity to flee before the Umibōzu realizes it has been tricked.

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