Phantom limbs

From Otherkin Wiki

Phantom limbs are body parts that a person can feel that are not physically there. Despite the name, the term is not used only to refer to limbs, but any body part. In the context of the otherkin, therianthrope and related communities, it is used as a shortening of supernumerary phantom limbs, which are specifically body parts which the person has never physically had.[1]

Experiences[edit | edit source]

Phantom limbs most often correspond to a person's kintype, theriotype, or other identity. The limbs can be as simple as a pair of animal ears and a tail or wings, or as complex as the whole body of an animal or creature.[2] Some people even perceive themselves as being a different size.[1]

Phantom limbs are experienced by some people from childhood, before they become aware of their nonhuman identity.[2][3] If a person does not already know their species, the properties of their phantom limbs can be a clue towards identifying it.[3]

The experience of phantom limbs can be heightened during a phantom shift. They can also be deliberately summoned or intensified, and guides have been written on how to do this.[3][4]

Naming controversy[edit | edit source]

Some people have advocated for the terms "otherlimbs", "metalimbs" or "astral limbs" as alternatives, believing "phantom limbs" to be inaccurate or offensive to amputees.[5][6] Others have responded to this with criticism, observing that the term "phantom limbs" has never been exclusive to amputees. The term "astral limbs" has additionally been criticized for excluding psychological otherkin or people who do not believe in the astral plane.[7]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 galgal. "Phantom Limbs- Beyond the Flesh"
  2. 2.0 2.1 Lupa. (April 2007) "A Field Guide To Otherkin" Megalithica Books.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 J.T. Ward (tygerwolfe). (May 16th, 2011) "These Ancient Eyes: Ghost Wolf – Shift Happens 2" (Archived version)
  4. Freetha. "Working With Phantom Limbs"
  5. beanjamoose. "PSA to Otherkin: Stop using the term “Phantom Limbs”"
  6. Asher S. de Sadeleer. (June 2016) "Articulating Non-Humanity: Discourse Analysis to Discover The Otherkin Community" University of Groningen.
  7. Orion Scribner. "Regarding phantom limbs" (Archived version)