How Real is The Realm? (Part II)
Much to my friend’s surprise, the slum setting of The Realm: The Awakening Begins is based on true-to-life places. I wrote about this in my last blog. What Ididn’t mention was that my friend also thought all the shaman/magic activities of Adan and his father, were totally fictional as well. I did make up Mahalan, Ivah and some of the structure of their rituals and belief systems. BUT, I did try to base it on actual types of things I’ve heard about in real life. Yes, really. I read books, listened to stories of friends, and strangers, asked questions to people who might know answers . . . and had a few of my own experiences along the way.
Take for instance the issue of human sacrifice. No, I have had no personal experiences with that (thank goodness!). But I have read and heard enough non-fiction stories to know that there are people who believe they will gain more spiritual power by sacrificing someone to a spirit being.
Or how about the issue of shape-shifting? I remember the first person who told me about the possibility of shape-shifting. He was a friend of mine from Ghana and told me the following story. He was traveling to a village by foot one day, when he felt an iguana or lizard climbing up his leg under his trousers. He reached down and through the material of his trousers, twisted and broke the creature’s neck. The little beast fell to the ground dead and lay along the side of the road. Later, when he was in the village, someone came running in and accused him of killing a man who lay dead with a broken neck on the road to the village. I don’t remember how my friend got out of that predicament, but he did tell me he was foolish not to have cut off the creature’s tail. If he’d cut off the tail, he could have proved he’d killed the man as an animal, and not a person. Yes, I think I was staring at him blankly and dumbfounded by the end of that story.
Over the years, I’ve heard similar stories from other trusted friends in other parts of the world backing up what my friend claimed. I can’t call all these friends of mine liars, so I’m left thinking that somehow, maybe it’s true. And that is just one of the things I’ve woven into The Realm. Somehow, I have no desire to experience shape-shifting first hand. I like my intelligence level just where it is, thank you, not at a monkey or iguana’s level.
And as for the good side of the spiritual stuff in The Realm . . . again, lots of research and experience that has led me to believe LOVE truly is the strongest power of all, in real life and in fiction. I’ve seen it over and over.