Tuesday, April 24, 2012


BEARBULL is an important figure of American Mythology, albeit a lesser known one. This trickster shows up in many tales, often as an instigator. BEARBULL, or one of his allegorical forms, influences an individual to compromise his or her morals in order to gain something. In this way, BEARBULL is a trickster not unlike the Raven of Haida folklore. He is an omnipresent entity that represents power and/or wealth.
BEARBULL often shape shifts to keep his appearance a secret, and shamans don't openly or directly talk about him. What is known about BULLBEAR, comes from skewed oral, written, and pictorial traditions. The only definite fact known is BEARBULL’s colors: either green, or composed of precious materials. It is commonly believed that BEARBULL is a combination of the two creatures, but it has been suggested that he has two, six, seven, or thirteen faces. Alternatively, the multiple faces may be alternative BEARBULL forms. It must be noted that although this author genders BEARBULL as male, it may actually be female, hermaphroditic, or genderless.

In ritual, inviduals either give or receive a fetish BEARBULL, usually in exchange for an object or a service.  One end of the exchange gains wealth and the other power, but which benefits the most or how is still under dispute. We can also rephrase the exchange as one end gives wealth and the other gives power. The two parties either refuse to acknowledge or to admit who gains/gives what. The exchange’s ambiguity takes BEARBULL out of the good versus evil deity conversation. 

          To summarize, BEARBULL is a omniscient, omnipresent trickster. We do not understand, as of yet, his origin or purpose. The daily BEARBULL rituals exchange a BEARBULL respresentaion, often multiple times a day. More investigation is needed in order to better understand BEARBULL and how he fits into the greater mythos. 

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