The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory

By
February 5th, 2008
The Mormon Bigfoot/Genesis Theory

Is it Bigfoot? Or a fugitive from the garden of Eden. Or maybe both.

The Journal of Mormon History recently published a new investigation into stories suggesting that the giant Sasquatch monster is really Cain, the murderous second son of Adam and Eve.

It may not be the first controversy tackled by new Mormon President, Thomas S. Monson. But the article's author, Matthew Bowman cites a 1919 manuscript describing Hawaiian missionary E. Wesley Smith "being attacked by a huge, hairy creature, whom Smith drives off in the name of Christ" the night before the mission was dedicated. His brother tells him the attacker must've been Cain. ("Now therefore cursed shalt thou be upon the earth, which hath opened her mouth and received the blood of thy brother at thy hand...a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be upon the earth.") And then he refers him to a story by a celebrated Mormon martyr who was one of Joseph Smith's original twelve apostles.



In 1835, as evening fell, missionary David W. Patten had spotted a figure walking near his mule in Tennessee. His tall, dark body was covered with hair, he wore no clothing, and...
...he replied that he had no home, that he was a wanderer in the earth and traveled to and fro. He said he was a very miserable creature, that he had earnestly sought death during his sojourn upon the earth, but that he could not die, and his mission was to destroy the souls of men.

I rebuked him in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by virtue of the Holy Priesthood, and commanded him to go hence, and he immediately departed out of my sight.


"As best as I can determine, the explicit connection to Bigfoot arises around 1980 in Davis County, Utah," Bowman writes on the Mormon Mentality site. "At that point in time, you have a conjunction of two things — 1) the publication of The Miracle of Forgiveness, which reprinted the original Patten story; 2) a rash of Bigfoot sightings.

"By the mid-1980s, the two strains of folklore begin to fuse, and the story gains resurgence, particularly on Utah's college campuses."

The book of Genesis does specify that God issued the mark of Cain, "that whosoever found him should not kill him." But did that confer immortality?

On the Mormon Folklore blog, Bowman received an interested response from someone who'd heard Patten's story at the church's Missionary Training Center, "where he was on his horse and eye-to-eye with the standing Bigfoot."
[O]ne of the missionaries suggested that this is another example of Satan copying the ways of God. His logic was that God preserved the lives of John the Baptist and the Three Nephites to work as agents for Him until the end of time — Satan did the same thing with Cain (thus, the ability to live through the flood).

There's already been a controversy about the Mormon church's teachings on Cain. Brigham Young believed that God punished Cain's ancestors, and that "the mark of Cain" was: black skin. The same belief continued through a 1966 edition of the church reference book Mormon Doctrine, and black Mormons were banned from the church's priesthood. But at that same time, church president David O. McKay announced that "It is a practice, not a doctrine, and the practice will some day be changed." The position was ultimately reversed by church president Spencer W. Kimball, and the church ordained its first black priest in 1978. (Thomas S. Monson, the new Mormon President, conducted that priest's marriage and sacred ordinances.)

Eugene England, a professor at Brigham Young University, addressed "the Cain legacy" in a 1998 article in Sunstone magazine.
This is a good time to remind ourselves that most Mormons are still in denial about the ban, unwilling to talk in Church settings about it, and that some Mormons still believe that blacks were cursed by descent from Cain through Ham...

I check occasionally in classes at BYU and find that still, twenty years after the revelation, a majority of bright, well-educated Mormon students say they believe that blacks are descendants of Cain and Ham and thereby cursed...

Of course, Mormon theory has faced skepticism before, like the blog commenter who opined that "The bible is just a waste of paper and the Book of Mormon is even less useful." But regardless of its credibility, the new attention to the "Bigfoot" legend provided an interesting opportunity to examine the way the church's theology had evolved.

"I find the idea that Cain, the original Son of Perdition in our theology, would degenerate into something half human/half animal is notable..." wrote blogger Fenevad. "[D]id it occur when Brigham Young was teaching that the Sons of Perdition would fall prey to eternal retrogression? ... Perhaps one message of the story is that evil is big and scary, but ultimately controllable."



And another comment notes that it's not the first time monsters from folklore have found their way into religious debates.
That reminds me of the story that I used to hear that the Loch Ness Monster was a surviving dinosaur, thus proving that the earth is not as old as scientists say it is. Uniquely Mormon? No. But I have heard variations on that one as a way to argue for young earth creationism among Church members back when that seemed to be a hot issue.

Over at Museum of Hoaxes site, blogger Alex Boese couldn't resist making the obvious joke. "[I]f Bigfoot is Cain, maybe Nessie is really the snake from the Garden of Eden."



But in a 21st century flood of information and misinformation, the discussion offers its own testament to the way new generations will grapple with questions about faith, folklore, and our popular culture.

Even if the commenters at the Mormon Folklore blog add their own twist.
I also seem to remember a story about a noted church leader — I think his name was Childs — sitting next to Cain on an airplane and starting up a discussion about the Book of Mormon only to have Cain tell him that his mission in life was to destroy the souls of men, especially the younger generation...

Hang on, no, wait... that was Mick Jagger. My bad.


See Also:
Santa's Crimes Against Humanity
Give Me Immortality or Give Me Death
Thou Shalt Realize The Bible Kicketh Ass
Scientology Fugitive Arrested
Atheist Filmmaker Issues 'Blasphemy Challenge'

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28 Responses to “The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory”

  1. Mike Says:

    Doesn’t have to be Cain. They’re assuming too much from the conversations. He could be the Wandering Jew.

  2. The Mormon Church, Cain, and Bigfoot | orbis quintus Says:

    [...] Zen Monkeys has a doozy of a post regarding some some Mormons seriously propose that Bigfoot is Cain. The church itself isn’t making such a claim, but it was published in apparently independent [...]

  3. FHuff Says:

    I was wondering why I was getting a few hits from Utah, which is great. The creature from those encounters is described much like a Sasquatch/Bigfoot. Without folks trying to force the creature to fit within their own preconceived notions of what exists on the planet and what doesn’t, the encounters are very much the typical encounter with Bigfoot.

  4. Loren Coleman Says:

    Coincidence or cosmic jokester? I also posted on “The Mormon Conspiracy,” regarding Bigfoot yesterday:

    http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/mormons/

    Intriguing!
    Loren Coleman

  5. illlich Says:

    So, how did our hairy friend get to North America? The native Americans are supposedly the lost tribe of Israel who traveled here by boat (according to Mormon mythos), but did sasquatch hitch along for that ride? I can’t imagine the Israelites bringing along a beast who was supposed to be ostracized, nor do I imagine sasquatch building his own boats. And if you’re gonna use the “devil is playing tricks” card, well then there’s no point you can’t win with that magical weapon (it’s like the smart-bomb nemesis of rational thought).

  6. Lou Cabron Says:

    > So, how did our hairy friend get to North America?

    Cain walked over on the land bridge between Russia and Alaska.

    Duh…….

  7. Karl Rose Says:

    I have been a Latter-day Saint (Mormon) for 50 years, am very active in my religion, and have never seen anything in any doctrine, official or otherwise, stating that Cain still roams the Earth. Still, urban legends abound among Mormons, and we certainly have our share of eccentrics, (though many non-Mormons believe the entire religion is eccentric).

    Many Mormons believe Bigfoot exists, and many do not. I am one who is sure Bigfoot does not exist.

    The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory is just more sensationalistic LDS propoganda with little to no truth to it.

    By the way, the Mormons believe that John the beloved still walks the Earth along with the three Nephites, not John the Baptist, who was beheaded.

  8. Colin Jensen Says:

    The Jagger thing is true though… Gene R Cook did sit on a plane for 2.5 hours next to Mick Jagger in the late 80s. No real statistical reason to doubt that. And, according to Cook’s statements since (as you can read in that link), Jagger bragged about how his music was “calculated to drive kids to sex,” but “it’s not my fault, I’m just making money.” Again, there’s no reason, knowing Cook or Jagger, to question any of the interchange given…

  9. Mike Says:

    Even the bigfoot story has been mormoned now.

  10. Random News Table | Uncle Bear Says:

    [...] The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory The Journal of Mormon History recently published a new investigation into stories suggesting that the giant Sasquatch monster is really Cain, the murderous second son of Adam and Eve. (tags: cryptozoology religion) [...]

  11. Steven Says:

    Ahem!!!! I would just like to clear the air on the statement that bigfoot is a descendant of cain. May I remind you that after Adam, Eve, Cain and Abel there appeared in the Biblical text a man named Noah. In Noah’s day the earth was flooded wiping out all except 7 and these seven were Noah’s family. Therefore, unless Noah gathered a male and female bigfoot (Given Cain’s character I find this highly unlikely) or unless bigfoot can tread water for 40 days and 40 nights, it is impossible for Bigfoot to be a descendant of Cain. As you can see the theory that bigfoot is Cain is purely the figment of an ignorant mind much like many of the “Revelations” Joseph Smith and later leaders had.

  12. Lou Cabron Says:

    Nothing’s impossible with divine intervention.

    I think the theory is that Satan helped Cain survive the flood. (There’s already some other stories about good people preserved through the flood through heavenly intervention, so why not?) Another theory is that one of Noah’s children married a descendant of Cain, thus at least perpetuating the curse.

    According to this blog, the Mormon church believes in the literal truth of a global flood.

    http://exmormonskeptic.blogspot.com/2007/05/lds-church-stands-or-falls-on-literal.html

    So, yeah, you do have to find some way to reconcile the two beliefs. But you’re really asking, “Could god make a flood so large that he himself couldn’t make Bigfoot survive it?”

    Scholars have spent centuries debating wackier questions…

  13. Marah Says:

    Wow, I was interested in all the Cryptozoology sites after having watched the Discovery channel until I got to this bigotted, cynical, narrow minded, gossip spreading site. Who the hell cares what Mormons think about Cain and if he may or may have not survived a flood. I recall having read something about Gods curse seven times seven times seven generations and posterity upon anyone who shed Cains blood as well as the mark upon him.
    There was a time this planet consisted of a single continent, in fact I believe it is referred to as in the “days of Peleg”, Biblically speaking. Look at the continent’s layout today often referring to the Gulf of Mexico, African and South American Continents as puzzle pieces. Therefore anything could be possible. AND yes, it is John the Beloved, not the Baptist..duh.
    The fact remains, isn’t the purpose of Cryptozoology to investigate any and all possibilities, open mindedly, or is it simply to find fault and whine???

    ~Marah

  14. RangerGordon Says:

    Bigfoot/Cain couldn’t survive the flood? Couldn’t travel to America from the Holy Land?

    If we’re going to accept the existence of a Bigfoot/Cain, aren’t we forgetting that he is cursed to live until the last days? He may suffer, but he cannot die. The flood is easy; he simply lived, miserably, underwater for 40 days and nights, unable to breathe, eating whatever fish came swimming by, presumably raw and possibly flopping around. If there were any mercy, he would be unconscious at least, but who knows with the nature of these God-curses?

    For travel to America, who needs a ship or leahona? He just revives his ocean-dweller act and trudges sorrowfully but resolutely across the Atlantic floor from Gibraltar to Newfoundland–say, about 3,000 miles. At an (optimistic) underwater walking pace of 2 mph, walking 18 hours per day (does he need to sleep? Rest?), he could make it in a moist three months. That’s like one day to a guy who’s been around 6,000 years and counting.

  15. disinfo.com Says:

    Whoa, Bigfoot Is Really Cain? As in “Cain and Abel” Cain? So Say Mormon History Journal…

    Writes Destiny on 10 Zen Monkeys:Is it Bigfoot? Or a fugitive from the garden of Eden. Or maybe both.The Journal of Mormon History recently published a new investigation into stories suggesting that the giant Sasquatch monster is really Cain, the murde…

  16. Screamo Says:

    Why does Cain have to be transformed into something that would set him physically apart from everyone else. Remember thatit was God who set him apart and that God looketh on the heart and not on the outside (obviously not the exact scripture). To me, Cain was spirituallybscarred, shown everything there is to know, given the knowledge of what he’ll miss out on and than being forced to live till the Second Coming of Christ. And just like he was lead by Satan to kill his brother, he lives to kill the spirits of his brothers and sisters to bring them as close to his state as he can. He’s not “cursed” with a different skin tone, not cursed with a completly altered appearance like Bigfoot but rather cursed to walk the Earth for 6000 some years knowing what he did was wrong and being forced to live with it. I doubt highly the Lord would alter him in a way that could be used for fame or glory (in this weird way)

  17. blacksundae » Blog Archive » The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory Says:

    [...] more at 10 Zen Monkeys. Share This: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new [...]

  18. Dexter Morgan Says:

    “By the way, the Mormons believe that John the beloved still walks the Earth along with the three Nephites, not John the Baptist, who was beheaded.”

    Exactly. Everybody knows that John the Baptist became the Headless Horseman, not one of the Three Nephites. Duh.

  19. Kevin Says:

    I can say with a sound voice, that Cain is not the Bigfoot. I have met Cain and he is not Bigfoot. God never promised immortality to Cain. He is dead. Wondering the earth to destroy the faith of men in spirit form.

  20. Critical Mass :: Blog Archive :: Magic Underwear Outlet Coming to North Broad Street :: Philadelphia City Paper :: Philadelphia Arts, Restaurants, Music, Movies, Jobs, Classifieds, Blogs Says:

    [...] Osmond) to exchange your holey underwear for a pair of holy underwear.Be sure to ask about the Bigfoot = Cain [...]

  21. Breyn Says:

    I don’t buy it.
    Bigfoot has been seen everywhere. Cain was a guy however many years ago. Does Bigfoot / Cain now teleport? Also, so are we to say now that God is going to take a sinful man, turn him into a half ape, half man over sized creature, make him immortal, & send him about the world as the destroyer of souls? And if that’s the case, has Cain been doing a good job? I’m not sure of how many people have been raped of their souls lately by Bigfoot, but that’s not the usual Bigfoot MO.
    By the way, it would have to be God! Since when does the devil have the ability to grant anyone immortality? Now does the former logically reflect God’s MO? Not if you know anything about Him or what’s written about Him, whether one believes in Him or not.
    Is Bigfoot real? Maybe. Is it a creature protected by God from man? Maybe. Nothing wrong with speculating. But there’s no need to throw away thousands of years worth of information, writings, & testimonies about the character of God, (also the character of Bigfoot for that matter), just for the sake of a quick & dirty explanation.

  22. All my bookmarks ever | Daniel John Gayle Says:

    [...] The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory – 10 Zen Monkeys [...]

  23. Anon 9:46 Says:

    “# Colin Jensen Says:
    February 6th, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    “The Jagger thing is true though… Gene R Cook did sit on a plane for 2.5 hours next to Mick Jagger in the late 80s. No real statistical reason to doubt that. And, according to Cook’s statements since (as you can read in that link), Jagger bragged about how his music was “calculated to drive kids to sex,” but “it’s not my fault, I’m just making money.” Again, there’s no reason, knowing Cook or Jagger, to question any of the interchange given…”

    The Jagger thing is not true. Cook’s son Troy says it occurred while the Cook family was living in Mexico City. Jagger was in Mexico filming videos only in October 1983 and Janaury 1984. The Cook family moved to Mexico City in July 1984, as Cook was named the Mexico/Central America Area president at that time. The timeline does not support Cook’s story.

  24. Clint Richins Says:

    If folks would read the Sriptures right. The African Americans come the lenedge of Cainanite. Cain is a whole different person. I have seen a Sasquatch in Utah with my brother-in-law. They do exist, and I believe that they are the decendents of Cain. Who in the Bible was to roam the Earth as A Vagabond. That is why they cannot be captured. Also in the Bible it staits that who ever harms one with have vengance upon him seven fold. There is a Indian tribe in Vancover that has a legend that if you harm one, you will die in Seven Years. Talk what you will about the Church. But the Cain/Bigfoot theory is not Church Doctrine.

  25. Bigfoot Sighting in North Central MN (photo) + Is Bigfoot Immortal? « Xenophilia (True Strange Stuff) Says:

    [...] … The book of Genesis does specify that God issued the mark of Cain, “that whosoever found him should not kill him.” But did that confer immortality? – 10zenmonkeys [...]

  26. Zelder Says:

    Anon says:
    “The Jagger thing is not true. Cook’s son Troy says it occurred while the Cook family was living in Mexico City. Jagger was in Mexico filming videos only in October 1983 and Janaury 1984. The Cook family moved to Mexico City in July 1984, as Cook was named the Mexico/Central America Area president at that time. The timeline does not support Cook’s story.”

    Gene R Cook did indeed have a conversaion with Jagger on a plane. I heard Cook describe the event with my own ears at a conference. IT HAPPENED!

  27. Jesus Christ Says:

    Dear ladies and gentlemen, the film the Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin made in 1967 in northern california at bluff creek of bigfoot was real. I believe that bigfoot is real because I know what bigfoot really is. Here is what they filmed on October 20 1967. Several thousand years ago there were thousands slaves that ran off around the world and started their own countries. When these slaves ran off there was a large group of men and boys of all different ages and sizes that took off and ended up in africa. Some of them were giants as tall as 9 ft. or even taller. The giant named Goliath that David killed with his slingshot was 9 ft. tall. So there were giant men back then just like we have giant men now. Some of these men and boys went exploring to borneo and caught female orangutans and took them to south america and had sex with them and created the indians. The men and boys that stayed in africa caught female gorillas and had sex with them and created the africans. When scientists found the bones in africa they thought we evolved naturally from a female chimpanzee. But it wasn’t a natural evolution it was a man made evolution. That’s where all the bigfoot and orangutan creatures come from. They are half man and half gorilla and half man and half orangutan. They use to call the indians the red man. The orangutan has reddish hair. When those men bred out the hair the indian’s skin remained red. The gorilla has black hair and skin. When those men bred out the hair the african’s skin remained black. Some of the indians and africans are tall and some of the bigfoot and orangutan creatures are tall. They are tall because some of the men that created them were tall. Some scientists believe that we evolved naturally from a female chimpanzee. Have you ever seen an 8 ft. tall chimpanzee? I haven’t either. Bigfoot migrated up through africa and came into the united states at the top of africa when they were connected by land. Some of the first europeans that saw the africans said that the african women had genitals that resembled that of a gorilla.
    The creature that Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin filmed in 1967 was half man and half gorilla. It was a female bigfoot that they named Patty. Patty was not a man in a costume, she is not our missing link and she is not a figment of our imagination. Patty was simply a creature that was created by men that had sex with female gorillas and orangutans a long time ago. Believe it or not, man created his own evolution. +Jesus+

  28. debi Says:

    The Mormon Bigfoot Genesis Theory is that:
    Is it Bigfoot? Or a fugitive from the garden of Eden. Or maybe both…….
    It seems like it follows both the rules.