Posted by: Kirk Sigurdson on June 7th, 2014
I’m currently researching a new novel about The Djinn. Yesterday, I was chatting with a colleague at work (I’m a writing professor at a community college) about demons.
In modern times, especially in the West, demons are often confused with Djinn. Part of the problem stems from The New Testament in the Bible. European translations of ancient Hebrew scrolls leave out the word “Djinn,” opting in favor of the word “demons” every single time. I have always found this “presto-change-o” to be interesting. Why have all references to the djinn been changed to “demons” in almost all Westernized Bibles? After all, the Djinn and demons are two very different types of beings, at least mythologically speaking.
For instance, Djinn are not all evil, traditionally speaking, and they are rumored to answer for their “sins” on Judgment Day, just like humans. They have gender, unlike demons, which are said to “shape-shift” their gender. They are organized in families and clans, instead of a military hierarchy. They have free will, and have a knowledge of the past and present, but not the future (unlike demons, which are said to be able to see the future). This said, the Djinn do have a great deal in common with demons: they, too, can shapeshift, live in filthy places (generally speaking), are usually invisible, have a generally tricky and dangerous disposition, and sometimes possess humans and animals.
I first became interested in Djinn because of my bigfooting experiences, which often seemed more like some run-ins I’d suffered with spirits while living in two different haunted houses. Indeed, I think it’s possible that a great many “bigfoot” sightings are actually tricky Djinns or demons shape-shifting into the forms of sasquatches. However, that’s merely a gut impression. How can one scientifically account for such a hypothesis? Sasquatches do, indeed, leave footprints behind, and bodies are sometimes recovered. Still, even the hard evidence and eyewitness accounts leave one scratching one’s head.
For instance, I have heard of two women that ran into a bigfoot on a remote road in the woods. The being was killed and its intestines had spilled out. When the ladies stood over it, a noxious vapor made them ill. One backed away, whereas one stooped down to examine the body more closely. Eventually, both left the scene. Almost immediately, they began suffering from severe afflictions in their eyes and lungs. The lady who had bent over the body died within a year of a lung-related ailment.
Read the rest of the article on my website here.
Kirk Edward Sigurdson attended New York University, where he earned a Master's degree in English literature. His master's thesis entitled "A Gothic Approach to HP Lovecraft's Sense of Outsideness" was published in Lovecraft Studies Journal. After writing three novels while living in Manhattan's East Village, Sigurdson returned to his native state of Oregon. It wasn’t long before he began work on a fresh new novel that drew upon his knowledge of the sasquatch phenomenon. As research, he ventured dozens of times into sasquatch "hot spots" for overnighters, often with friends who shared some very unique experiences. He also drew upon childhood exposure to sasquatch calls and knocking that occurred during family camping trips to Horseshoe Lake in the Cascades mountains. Kirk Sigurdson is currently a Professor of Writing and English literature at Portland Community College.