To this I would add that such monstrous beings also attest to some of the least palatable aspects of human behaviour, to the nastiest and most vicious of our human capabilities.
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Importantly, in Aboriginal Australia, these figures and their attendant narratives provide a valuable source of knowledge about the hazards of specific places and environments. Most important of all is their social function in terms of engendering fear and caution in young children, commensurate with the very real environmental perils that they inevitably encounter.
The monstrousness of many, although not all, of these monstrous Desert Beings lies in their particular disposition towards cannibalism. In the farthest reaches of the Western Desert, in the Pilbara region, the brilliant although largely unheralded Martu artist and animator Yunkurra Billy Atkins creates extraordinarily graphic images of cannibal beings, including babies see animation still, below. These ancient, malevolent Ngayurnangalku Cannibal Beings have sharp pointy teeth and curved, claw-like fingernails.
They reside beneath a salt lake, Kumpupirntily Lake Disappointment. In those environs they have been known to stalk and to feast on human prey — to be precise, Martu people. This unnerving environment is grounded in an equally unnerving narrative. Kumpupirntily is home to the fearsome Ngayurnangalku, ancestral cannibal beings who continue to live today beneath the vast salt-lake. As Billy Atkins avows :. In this respect, monstrous figures reflect what could be described as the potential vulnerabilities and fault-lines of specific Aboriginal societies and locations.
This is so the world over. The belief system relating to Mamu activity has extended into the post-contact lives of older Anangu people. This is demonstrated by the elderly Pitjantjatjara people who accounted for the mushroom cloud released by the British program of testing atomic bombs at Maralinga on Anangu land as evidence of Mamu wrath and fury at being disturbed in their underground dwelling places and therefore rising up in a huge, angry dustcloud. Wati Nyiru chases the Kungkarangkalpa, the celestial star sisters comprising the constellation known to the ancient Greeks as the Pleiades, through the night sky, with sexual conquest among other things on his mind.
The Warlpiri Pangkarlangu, which extends further across the Central and Western Deserts, usually wears a woven hair-string belt around his middle. This accoutrement is closely connected to his foul purposes. Pangkarlangu, huge lumbering bestial humanoids, roam the desert in search of their desired quarry. In their spare time, they fight one another. Pangkarlangu grab their prey by their little legs, upending them quickly, head down, tiny arms akimbo.
Warlpiri adults who are successful hunters use a similar technique to seize good-sized goannas or bluetongue lizards by their tails, in order to prevent them from inflicting deep scratches or painful gashes on the arms or hands of their captors. The Pangkarlangu models his baby-execution method on those human hunters of small game, killing the infants swiftly and expertly - by dashing their brains out on the hard red earth, in a single blow. After slaying his defenceless victim, a Pangkarlangu will string its little body around his waist, tying its legs onto his hairstring belt, so that its head dangles and bobs up and down as he strides along.
Then the Pangkarlangu makes a fire, chucking the dead tots onto the ashes, after which he settles down to gorge himself on a mouth-watering meal of slow-roast baby. There was no doubt in my mind that such narratives are first and foremost about social control with respect to the specific dangers of the desert where, in the summer months, people can die horribly tormented deaths from thirst within a matter of hours.
Such monstrous beings and their attendant narratives exist to impress upon and to inculcate into young children the need for obedience to older members of the family, and especially not to wander off into the desert alone, lest they meet a fate perhaps worse than that of encountering a ravenous Pangkarlangu.
Pangkarlangu, like other monstrous beings in Aboriginal Dreaming narratives, whether male or female, are more often than not depicted in figurative form a rare occurrence in Central and Western Desert art, which is primarily iconographic with grossly oversized genitals — their enormous members providing surefire evidence of malevolent intent. As in the case of the desert regions, the repertoire of monstrous figures in Arnhem Land in the wet tropical monsoon-prone far north of Australia, speaks to the inherent dangers of particular environments.
This is also reflected in artworks and narratives.
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At one level, Yawk Yawks could be described as Antipodean mermaids — except for the fact that they are not benign. Children and young people particularly fear them, because they are believed to be capable of dragging people underwater and drowning them. Like most Aboriginal Spirits, they have the capacity to metamorphose, and can sometimes assume a presence on dry land, before morphing back into water spirits. They have long claws and at night fly through the air, long hair streaming, to prey on human victims.
Parents control children by cautioning them not to run around outside at night, particularly when there is a high wind, which echoes the sound that the Namorroddos make as they whistle and swish though the night sky, their skeletal bodies held together only by thin strips of flesh. In turn, their victims are also transformed into Namorroddos. And sorcerers abound, none more feared than the Dulklorrkelorrkeng, genderless, or rather, capable of assuming the characteristics of either gender, malignant Spirit Beings with faces similar to those of flying foxes, and that eat poisonous snakes with relish - to no ill effect.
Dulklorrkelorrkeng are known to go around with a whip snake tied to their thumbs, and they live in forests that have no ground water.
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In many respects they resemble the Namande spirits of western Arnhem Land. The late Arnhem Land artist Lofty Bardayal Nadjamarrek , of the Kundedjinjenghmi people, was esteemed as possibly the greatest living limner of the sorcerer-spirit Dulklorrkelorrkeng.
Source - gutenberg. In some areas of Bangalore people believed there was a witch who would roam around visiting people's house and knocking on their doors. Opening the door basically guarantees certain death so you have to write 'nale ba' i. Seeing this gives you a day's respite from this wayward witch. Hence in some parts of Bangalore, April 1 is celebrated as Nale Ba day. Source - staticflickr. The Mother Mary statue purpotedly cries tears of blood from her inanimate stone eyes. There was also the appearance of oil, honey and milk in , as well as another picture of Mother Mary weeping blood in God works in mysterious ways it would seem.
Source - ucanindia. In India, especially in several villages, ghosts and witches look just like normal humans, with the only distinguishing feature being their feet: they point backwards. As twisted pun intended as that sounds, maybe the legend just started from back in the days when leprosy was widespread and reversed feet were just another strange sighting.
Source - smashinglists. Known by different names around the world, the common feature of this night dweller is their capacity to cause confusion. Usually described as a smoky apparition that leads people off the safe path, in India they are said to divert fishermen, leading them to drown. Known as will-o'-the-wisp in English.
https://nestlustreadobap.gq Source - idelo. One of the sneakiest ghosts, this creature sounds like something out of a horror movie.
Using a loved one's voice to lure you out at night and kill you, the only way to avoid it is to not answer the voice until it calls out three times. Third time's the charm! Source - whatsupgurgaon. What better place for Bigfoot to hide out in than the distant Garo Hills in Meghalaya. Mande Burung is a creature distinctly described as a giant ape that never actually attacks humans but sightings have been reported from at least 16 sources. Source - bpblogspot. The British railway engineer who developed this tunnel in the Kalka-Shimla railway is said to haunt the very place he helped build.
In , Colonel Barog started boring into the Shimla hill from both sides, hoping they would meet in the middle. However, his calculations were wrong, he faced public humiliation and ended up shooting himself. His ghost apparently roams the tunnel to this day.
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Source - hunt. There are several different versions of the ghost who lives in the mango tree. The most common belief is that it is the ghost of a married woman who wear shell bangles and haunts the wives of the rich and famous. That's one ghost that knows what it wants! Source - designsnext. This is a mermaid like creature said to dwell in the rivers and lakes of Bangladesh. It drags unsuspecting people into the water, drowning them. Eerily similar to the water nymphs of Greek Mythology, who's tune was so sweet it would make sailors fall in love and jump into the water.
Strangely sexual? Source - artble. Bengali forest dwellers fear nothing more than the Penchapechi, a ghost that takes the form of an owl. It flies around, hooting and stalking travellers until they're alone, then sucks on their blood. This owl thinks it's a vampire bat! Source - deviantart. There's thousands of other legends and myths about the unusual and the unreal.
India, a country doused in mysticism and culture, is a breeding ground for ghosts, poltergeists and all kinds of other creatures. Some of them might even still be active and real, and even if they aren't, it always makes for a good story! Aa Raha Hai'. We'd like to show you notifications for the latest news and updates.
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