Welcome in the Wolfmans Cave
This is the most private place on Wolfmans Island - the small space in The Virtuality that is the home of The Wolfman. This is where you can read about the history and the thoughts behind the Virtual Zoomorph Personification "The Wolfman", and how it relates to the Normal Human Self it represents.
What's a wolfman?
To most people the word "wolfman" is synonymous with "werewolf", and evokes disturbing pictures of this wretched, possessed man that can find no relief from his horrible fate, of when ever the full moon rise, to transform into the very negation of all he normally is. To once once a month to loose all contol of himself and completely surrender to the dark and bestial sides of his tormented soul. A tragic but also romantic figure, and a powerful symbol of the dualism that exist both in the individual as well as in the human civilization - the fight between the spiritual and the bestial, between good and the evil, the light and the darkness, between creation and destruction, between reason and instinct - and therefore both frightening and fascinating.
What about this Wolfman?
But what about me, this wolfman of Wolfmans Island - Am I really a werewolf ? - Am I a wild wolf trapped in the body of tamed man? - a sheep in wolves clothing? - is my lupine identity just something symbolic? -or is the truth something else or a little of each? What is the relationship between the Normal Human Self of me, the writer of these words, and The Wolfman? Is it as schizoid as it might seem? Am I a schizoid person? No, I don't think so - The Wolfman is under control.
The more prosaic facts about this Wolfman is that it all started when my parents gave me a first name - Ulf - that means 'wolf'. This meant that all through my life I have been nicknamed and petnamed with all kind of wolf-related names, sometimes this has bothered me, but mostly not. But there is much more to it than that!
Many years later, (I'm now 38) I picked the pseudonym Wolfman, for use on the high-score list when wasting my working hours playing Tetris on the company computer network. When I later got access to the internet, and started wasting my time on internet chat instead of Tetris, I brought the name Wolfman with me there, and a change began...
The Wolfman and I
This exposure to the magic world of the internet and the revelation of a whole virtual world there, with all the possibilities it offered me, gave me the idea of letting the Wolfman come into existence as an entity in The Virtuality in a more complete and fuller sense. The Wolfman changed from being a name I used, into being a special role that I very deliberately used to focus on and experiment with different sides of myself. This was the birth of the Virtual Zoomorph Representation, or VZP for short, known as "Wolfman", and this was when I started my 'project' of finding my 'Inner Wolf'.
The Inner Wolf
The Wolfman is concieved as a Virtual Zoomorph Representation of those parts of me - of my mind or my soul, if you like - that have a hard time finding a way to express themselves in The Reality, all those troublesome emotional sides, we civilized humans usually tend to hide away, to make everyday life as smooth and uncomplicated as possible for everyone. All those cravings and longings we curb, not to complicate our relationships with others, or not to hurt each other or our self. All the wild creative and inventuous ideas that there is just no room for in Real Life. All the despair and pain, that nobody wants to know off. All my controversial sides that other people don't want to know, because it would change their picture of me. All that I restrain from expressing, in Real Life, because I'm not brave enough to fight other peoples prejudices, and not strong enough to stand the isolation that doing it might result in. All these restrained sides of my self is what makes up The Inner Wolf
In this way The Wolfman is a role that I use to by-pass limitations in myself, to break the bonds of my self-consciousness and my self-criticism. Being The Wolfman lets me be much stronger and more free than I am as my Normal Human Self, as which I am always too entangled in my roles in The Reality, and too shaped by The Reality. Playing a role or wearing a mask is not always a way of hiding - it can be a way to focus on and express special parts of your self.
The Wolfmans Island
When the Wolfman turned into the VZP and started living in The Virtuality, it was only logical that he had to have a home there as well, and that this could be an adequate outlet for expressing whatever I needed or wanted to communicate to the rest of the world. This is why Wolfmans Island was created.
Shifting from man to wolf, and back again
During the time The Wolfman has existed, more and more of the knowledge and experience achieved from this role-playing - and the selfscrutinizing involved with it - have been brought back into The Reality. My Normal Human self have learned from my Inner Wolf so to say. The Virtuality has proved to be at useful training ground.
But, as anyone who spends a lot of time in cyberspace knows, it's not easy (nor very satisfying) to keep playing roles when you interact with other people on a more than superficial level. You need to be yourself in an more honest way - You need to be there with your heart and soul. And just like in The Reality strictly defined roles soon become limitations. Therefore the difference between my Normal human Self and The Wolfman has become less significant, and less important for me to keep. Today the Wolfmans Island still reflects most of the original intentions behind the whole project, but the Wolfman you might meet on the Jubii Chat or ICQ, has changed since this project was concieved, and no longer is that different from the person behind the mask.
Some definitions of terms
Some terms that are used throughout these pages - the confined universe of Wolfmans Island - might need some further explanation, as they might not be regularly known, or might be used in a somewhat different sense than elsewhere.
The Reality: What we normally think of as The Real World, but within this context it means not only the physical world, but also the different 'roles' that people play and all the rules and norms that defines this 'great theater of life'.
If you use the metaphor that "all the world is a stage and all the people are players", The Reality encompass both the stage and the play and whatever may exist of manuscript and stage directions for a play that improvised.
The Virtuality: The virtual world of the internet, when viewed as a kind of parallel world, in which Humans can communicate and interact through their various Virtual Personifications. Not the parts of the internet that is e-commerce, online news, and science etc. - but the spaces where truth and fiction blend into each other.
In the aforementioned "world as a stage" metaphor, The Virtuality could be seen as a play within the play - something like a puppet theater placed on the larger stage, where some of the actors (The Normal Human Selves) perform symbolic scenes.
Virtual (Zoomorph) Personification: A symbolic representation in The Virtuality of a person in The Reality. Sometimes referred to as an Avatar in internet terms or an Alter Ego in literature. Not necessarilly equal to the Normal Human Self of that person. Zoomorph means in the shape of an animal.
If you hold on to the "world as a stage" metaphor - where The Reality is the stage, all the Normal Human Selves are players, and The Virtuality is a puppet theater included in the play - then the VZPs could be thought of as a the marionets that the 'actors' play with, in that puppet theater.
Normal Human Self: The sides of a person that is visible to others in The Reality. Our public self. The biological body plus the roles we fill out in The Reality. A subset of our Full Self, maybe almost congruent, maybe quite different, depending on our level of self-knowledge and sincerity, and the present context in The Reality.
The 'player' on the stage of The Reality.