Cthulhu, the Occult, and the Lovecraftian Power Zones of Wisconsin

In 1928, author H. P. Lovecraft released a short story in the pulp magazine Weird Tales under the title of The Call of Cthulhu. The story introduced the cosmic entity known as Cthulhu, described as having the shape of an immense green octopus, dragon, and a caricature of human form, and as being one of what are called “The Great Old Ones,” which form a loose pantheon of ancient, powerful deities from outer space, a sort of combination of gods and aliens. These Great Old Ones were said to have once ruled over the Earth but had since fallen into a deathlike sleep in which they await the day they are awakened and liberated from their slumber. And so would begin the lore of the Cthulhu universe, often called the Cthulhu Mythos, which would go on to be featured in numerous loosely connected stories by Lovecraft all set in a shared fictional universe. These are stories of cosmic horror, of dark cults, strange creatures lurking in the shadows, and beings so alien and beyond our comprehension as to cause madness just by looking upon them. Yet as much as this must surely all be fiction, there have been those over the years who have maintained that these sinister cosmic forces really exist, and Cthulhu has managed to seep into some occult beliefs, blurring the line between reality and fiction.

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