Urban legends, myths, campfire stories, these are things that persisted as long as humanity existed. With our large brains comes an impressive imagination. Humans have the unique ability to scare ourselves into thinking something we wouldn’t normally believe in exists. Is that the explanation? What of the so many things that we “know” are fake yet people all around the globe have seen the otherworldly phenomenon with remarkable similarities to other witnesses.
How can things such as the rake, slenderman, and werewolves have supposed sightings and even pictures when we know such things are impossible? After all we know the origins of slenderman and the rake, both are internet memes and creepypasta. Their origins are fake, we know this, we know their roots. So how is it that people claim to encounter them?
It’s no secret that human memory is frail. Some estimate that up to 90% of our memories are fiction. Some people go so far as to completely discredit eyewitness testimony due to what science has revealed about it in recent decades. Nevertheless, I find that to be overly simplistic. I bore witness to my dog laying at my feet a few minutes ago, yet I cannot prove it and undoubtedly that specific instance I will have forgotten it entirely. However, even if I get some details wrong, that doesn’t negate my experience. This is especially true when an experience creates an emotional response, we are more likely to recall minute details.
If you are one who has never experienced anything that could be classified as paranormal or supernatural, it is easier to dismiss and scoff at such things. So, where do we go from here? How can something we know is an internet meme be seen by people in the real world? Certainly, some of it is ordinary paranoia. Stories get into people’s heads and when they are alone at night walking through the woods, suddenly those silly stories don’t seem so silly. What if some of these people, even 1% cannot be so easily explained? What then? I don’t have that answer. We can play the game of “what if” though. What if there are spiritual entities that take on shapes of pop culture figures? Is that possible? Well first you have to answer whether you believe in the spiritual realm. If the answer is affirmative, than yes it is possible.
Another scenario is that these legends while fictional are inspired by real events. To take this train of thought even further, what if those who started these legends encountered things they couldn’t explain, but created the stories as a coping mechanism? It’s interesting to ponder. What’s important are your thoughts. What do YOU think about this?