The Transhuman Hand is a proposal for cooperation among different communities involved in an identity search, the Otherkin, Therian, and the Real Vampire community. The word “transhuman” is a term used here to express cooperation, exchange, solidarity, and community work. It is a word that can bring us all together for the common good but not something that can define all that we are. This is simply an outstretched hand to promote common ground and not a central dogma that we all must share, a proposal to work together if we are willing to do so. The chosen words in a text will never be the most important element; they only express better who we are, and what we search for. The Transhuman Hand includes the following points:
I. Recognize The Value Of Diversity.
We are individuals and communities with a history of searching for our identities, we are not all equal but we all want to know who we are and why we are like we are. We have different conditions, unresolved questions and answers to offer; but each of us is aware of possessing a special condition and the need to ask questions about ourselves, as well as we understand the value of finding answers that allow us to move forward in our search.
All this can be summarized in one word: DIVERSITY. It´s what nourishes our personal and collective quests; to know there are others like us, to know that they are looking as well, and that we are all unique although we share many of the same experiences. Diversity unites us and allows continue the search, it gives us every day the opportunity to be like we are but also to change what we are, adding new questions and answers. That is why we celebrate diversity, we encourage and share it with others because it essentially defines our need to understand who we are and where we are going.
II. Recognize The Value Of A Personal And Collective Identity Search.
We are individuals, groups and communities; throughout our daily lives. We act from a history, and from a personal and collective experience – individuals and societies continually growing. Each of us is a fertile element that integrates a larger structure; we all possess knowledge, thoughts, ideas, and experiences we contribute to help define the collective while also nourishing other individuals engaged in an identity search. We are all roots, leaves, and also the branches that connect every part of the tree. The individual and the collective are inseparable parts of the same fundamental search; therefore all parts should be recognized and valued.
III. Recognize The Value Of The Different Communities.
Different identity searches exist because different conditions that we know and experience exist; we are Otherkin, Therians, and Real Vampires. When we meet others like us we build our own communities, each one of them with its particular characteristics: history, development, interests, conflicts, advances and retreats. All of them have much to share through their experiences and intrinsic diversity, all of them can grow by offering their knowledge to the others. Each one has its own wealth to contribute to the personal and collective search of all other communities. We recognize and value this constant community contribution as important and necessary for continued growth.
IV. Recognize The Value Of Community And Intercommunity Work.
What we are is reflected in what we do, every community has already done a lot of work and still has a lot of work to be done for the common good. Community work enables the development of a community and the individuals within it. At the same time the work among the different communities always provides the latent possibility of growing together a little more and to find in the other a reflection of our concerns, longings and desires to know who we are. The community and intercommunity work is a mirror that reflects the best of the individuals and social organizations that are born from them. The best image that it can reflect is the various communities working together for the recognition of all special conditions we know to exist.
V. Recognize The Value Of Integrity.
Because we are people with special conditions we understand what it means to be discriminated against, mistreated, insulted, ignored, and rejected. We know how is to be in a difficult place, sometimes without the support of friends, family, and the general society. We understand the suffering caused by the incomprehension and loneliness of those put aside for being different. But many other people who are not like us also know about suffering, and this is something we should never forget. If we do, we will have squandered the immense value of our experiences as identity seekers, despising the price we pay for it every day. We must not detract from our quest by participating in things we consider unjust, cruel, or degrading. Precisely because we deserve respect we should have clear positions on all these things, we cannot demand what we don´t offer or claim what we don´t predicate with daily example.
Therefore, we condemn any violation of people rights, as well as racism and discrimination for any reason: sex, sexual orientation, age, gender, ethnicity, religious and spiritual beliefs, social and economic status, or any other people´s individual or collective characteristics. We celebrate the laws that promote the existence of civilized societies tolerant of diversity, those who respect the integrity of human beings, animals, and the environment in which they live. That’s why there can be no place in our communities for those who practice and encourage the ancestral discrimination against women, pedophilia and child abuse, discrimination of minorities and violence in all its forms. Diversity and Respect are two inseparable and similar concepts for relating to the world. As individuals who are part of communities we offer these because we want to receive the same; we want in return what we offer with open hands.
VI. Recognize The Value Of An Authentic Identity Search.
Our identity searches are often disparaged, distorted and misunderstood. We have been victims of media sensationalism and misinformation, compared to unbalanced or immature people who only play role-play games (RPG), are influenced by cultural entertainment products, need constant attention on their person, or with individuals who are only looking for economic profit at the expense of naive people. And although we reject these notions, too many times we have seen how people with these traits approach our communities and cause enormous damage. We cannot be indifferent in the face of actions of individuals who can’t offer anything good. We, who live each day with a special existential condition, condemn the fallacious and irresponsible use of fantasy and fiction elements to justify the lack of the essential honesty that should be part of a legitimate identity search. We are seekers of a truth that can only be found from honesty, introspection, research, and free exchange of information and experiences, these elements cannot be replaced with meaningless fantasies. We are a vast land to explore and we don´t need to include borrowed ideas from popular imagination to complete the map of our identities, we don´t need more fantasy to be more real — quite the opposite.
We consider it very harmful and misleading for our communities to replace the components of an authentic identity search with unrealistic elements taken from entertainment products generated by mass media. We encourage people´s development and not the creation of trivial fantasy characters. We understand that any serious and responsible attempt to discuss true transhuman identity is irreconcilable with the naive or malicious use of external fictional elements, derived from commercial and artistic creations, and without any foundation in the daily experiences of people honestly involved in an identity search. We don´t need more people roleplaying, nor manufacturers of modern pseudo-mythologies. This is very attractive for the unwise or emotionally unstable, unscrupulous traders who benefit by the sale of prefabricated fable personalities, model kits of a shallow and empty identity, marketing products that ultimately plunders the unwary of all which they claim to offer. There should be no place in our communities for people who misrepresent what we are and do so for purely childish, selfish, economic reasons, and is the daily task of all communities and their members to combat this problem.
VII. Recognize The Value Of Information.
The information we provide and receive can enrich or impoverish us, it can incorporate positive or negative aspects to our identity searches. Modern technological means make available to us infinite amounts of information in many ways, but technology by itself cannot provide us with honesty, responsibility, or the ability to reflect on the ethical use of information regarding our searches. Neither Gutenberg´s movable type printing or digital media can do that and they never will. As people who make use of information we are solely responsible for how we use every bit of it that we find and pass along, especially with regard to our interests and objectives as people with special existential conditions.
The information related to our searches come from many sources and sometimes fall into disuse or change continuously, accompanying the ongoing progress of societies. This should lead us to review our ethical commitment to the diffusion of information because its misuse can clearly harm us. In the same respect, honest and responsible use of information allows us to progress on a personal and community level. We encourage the free exchange of information among individuals, groups, and communities involved in an identity search, as well as its ethical use; and recognize by doing so that it can only result in widespread benefit. The well-used information is our best shield against unfair misinformation too often wielded against us: media sensationalism, biased use of our websites content, misconceptions about our conditions, baseless comparisons with diseases that we don´t suffer, and the attribution and equate of antisocial, violent or unbalanced behavior with the conditions we have. All this can be discouraged by giving examples of the proper use of information. We cannot fight against what damages us by following bad examples; we must prove every day that another way to access and use information is possible and should be our standard to broadcast who we are and how we relate to the entire world.
VIII. Recognize The Value Of Being A Hand That Cooperates.
To strengthen and deepen our identity searches we need each other, regardless of how we define us: as human, transhuman, or not human people. We can foster a greater existence enriched with the personal and collective contribution of our respective communities. We may call ourselves Otherkin, Therians, Real Vampires, but we cannot lose sight that we are a people engaged in an ongoing quest to find out who we are. The definitions, names and terminology we use for our identities are only a shifting wrapper that covers what we really are. The search defines us, we are what we do, and the hand outstretched to cooperate is far more important than a definition. Our search continues day after day although the words may change or become disused. The exchange of information and experiences, cooperation and community work, cannot be limited by concepts. While a search for a personal and collective identity may involve a degree of subjectivity, the constructive cooperation between people, groups and communities is an objective fact and a practice that can be as normal as we wish.
We should not restrict, condition, or manipulate the search of others similar to us but instead should contribute to other pursuits and learn from them. Each of us can be the Transhuman Hand which holds the other members of the different communities; we can do it from our places and thereafter contribute to a larger community in constant development. Our own needs and interests can be growth factors through exchange and cooperation, no matter how we define us. Find us on the World Wide Web, in our cities, anywhere around the world, look at each other, know each other and offer a helping hand. All of this is possible and desirable to enrich us reciprocally.
IX. Recognize The Value And The Potential Of Be A Community Of Communities.
We can be a collective of communities starting from the personal and working through the group, different communities twinned by an identity search, active members with shared experiences, sowing the diversity that is our invaluable growth potential. We can be growth in action.
We must stand together to achieve this objective, we cannot let misleading ideas divide and separate ourselves, or lose everything that we can accomplish together giving an undeserved space among us to divisive ideologies. Ideologies which can only produce a sterile confrontation based on false antagonisms; nor do we need false ideas of superiority among groups of people who are defined as human, transhuman, or non-human. We must be wise, we must know to move away from such childish and destructive claims for the collective development. Our communities nurture our diversity, cooperation and exchange, and we don´t need senseless conflicts; rather constructive knowledge nourished daily by all of us.
We need our identity searches to be based on positive personal and collective values which unite us and we need to be a friendly transhuman hand offered to build a collection of communities.
For A United Transhuman Community.
Mistwolf, 01-09-2013. This text was developed from Noctalium website. It can be transmitted, redistributed, published, or translated by other individuals, groups or organizations, provided there are no content modifications and full citation is included.