In order for us to proceed with “what a vampire is and isn’t”, I think it would be a good thing to define what “vampirism” is. This definition of “vampirism” is used by both the New Orleans Vampire Association (NOVA) and the House of Mystic Echoes (HoME)…
“Vampirism is a physiological condition wherein the ‘afflicted’ person’s body does not either produce enough, or none at all, of the essential energies to maintain a proper balance of physical, mental, and emotional well-being and must, therefore, turn to outside sources to attain these energies. These sources range from blood to psychic energy to empathic energy to elemental energy to the ambient negative energy present every day to eclectic mixes of any of the above sources.”
This working, living definition of ‘vampirism’ obviously does not take into account that ALL life on the face of the planet REACTS with the energies of ALL life on the planet. What separates the vampire from the everyday man or woman is their NEED for the energies garnered from outside sources because of the vampire’s own lacking ability to manugacture these basice essential energies. NEED, in this case is not defined by the desire one feels for something as simple as an object, but, rather, being defined as “a condition requiring relief; anything that is necessary but is lacking/ the physiological feature that arouses an organism to action”.
The term “physiological condition” is used in this definition pureley because, as a vampire, I understand that my vampirism affects ALL aspects of my life, not just the physical. “Physiological” is defined, in this instance as “consistent with the normal functioning of an organism”… In this case it is consistent with the normal functioning of the vammpire in question.
In a vampire, there exists the need to draw in and ‘consume’ energies around them… The necessary element that is lacking from them is the biological means to produce these basic essential energies on their own. In magick, for example, most practitioners can raise the energies, themselves, for many of their workings. However, should you require more energy, you would simply pull in more, like-minded members looking to do the same sort of working, or willing to offer their raised energies to one person performing the magick. You, the magick user, focus the energies THROUGH your bodies to manifest the will. YOU are not the end result of the energies you raise and focus. A vampire IS the end result of the energies they garner. Not protection. Not prosperity. Not a new home or shiny sports car or better girl/boyfriend. The energies we garner are merely to bolster our own lacking or non-existent basic essential energies which everyone needs to do such menial tasks as get out of bed, get dressed, shower, go to work/school or deal with any of the other myriad of daily tasks which occupy our lives.
Many members of the GVC (Greater Vampire Community), such as myself, have tried the medical/psycological route only to find at the end of the experience, we were no closer to finding out what was “wrong” with us in the first place. I, myself, have been prescribed, and tried, everything from changing my diet, adding new vitamin supplements, vitamin B shots in the backside, and adding more exercise at the recommendation of doctors to no avail. I still maintained a low energy and needed to draw it from some alternate sources.
A great many people, especially in the magickal communities, ask, almost on a daily basis, why can’t we pull the energies from such sources as ‘the endless bounty of the universal source’. The answer is simply NOT the right KIND of energy. That’s like asking a newborn baby to eat a T-bone steak and a baked potato. It is, simply put, not the right kind of energy at all.
TYPES OF FEEDINGS
Unfortunately, over the years, the GVC has become consumed by trying to rename every little aspect within itself. Though it is good to know more about the limitations of one’s own self, it is not good for a community to separate and segregate itself into smaller, micro-communities. When I first entered the comunity in 1978, we KNEW there were alternative methods to garner the necessary energies, but we focused on the similarities of our condition… On what made us “family” (for lack of a better word).
*Sanguinary- The most widely known, but also the most misunderstood of all the feeding types. Being falsely dubbed “psy-vamps on training wheels” and/or some other such nonsense, this is, of course, a blood feeder. A vampire who, when they consume blood, can transform this consumption into their much needed energies. They must pull this directly from a physical source. Sanguinary Vampires, generally, tend to be very touch based individuals which tends to mimic their need for a physical conduit for the energies they need.
*Psychic- this type of vampire must feed on the ambient energies given off by all living entities. Some Psychic Vampires can feed through a direct link. They must have this link in order to draw in their much needed energies.
*Pranic- This type of vampire, though touch based and physical, like the Sanguinary Vampire when attaining the energies they need, derive their much needed energies from all of the dense prana energies given off by the body during sensual contact, including sexual contact. The difference between the Pranic and Sanguinary Vampire is that a true Sanguinary ONLY draws their energies from the blood.
*Elemental- Most Elemental Vampires feed on the elements of fire, water, and wind, due to the difficulty most have when attempting to feed from the prime elements of the Earth. They can tap into the “para-elementals” of plant-life (IE trees, grass, bushes, and house plants), but for some reason, dirt, rocks, and gemestones elude them.
*Empathic- This particular Vampire pullss their much needed energies from the emotional energies given off by everyone. Most of this is ambient emotional energy, however, some, as with psychic feeders, must establish a link in order to do this.
*Negative- Most of these Vampires feed on the already prevalent negative energies that are present each and every day. They hold an inate ability within themselves to flip this energy into a “positive” feeding for THEM. HOWEVER, there are those Negative feeders out there that will CREATE VERY negative situations in order to feed from stronger, more heated emotions. These beings have been dubbed by many within the GVC as “Psychic Leeches” due to their obvious, hazardous nature.
*Eclectic- These Vampires have awakened with the need for, and the ability to draw, multiple sources of energy to maintain their already precarious balance of energies. This distinctive nature gives them some obvious advantages, like the capability of drawing energies from many sources instead of being locked into just one and/or having to adapt to others. The drwaback to this, is that sooner or later, if they do not maintain a semmblance of balance in these feeds, they too will feel the same side effects any other Vampire would feel not feeding.
*Adaptive- Thess Vampires, through necessity, such as a lack of donors for a Sanguine Vampire, have “adapted” to other feedings in order to attain their much needed energies. However, there is a slight drawback. Adaptive feeders must return to their primary feed type. They primary feed type implies the source of energy that was needed when the Vampire first awakened…
Every few years or so, someone comes along and changes the standard accepted vocabulary for reasons that range from finding nuances to the vampiric condition to putting out a new book to just wanting to not sound so plain to sounding better/different than everyone else to whatever happens to be going through their mind at that particular moment. Up to and including “special snowflake syndrome”. I’ve stopped with the accepted terms for vampirism and Vampires in the early to mid 1990s for the benefit of this writing.
There are some common factors (perhaps falsely) labeled as “symptoms”. These “symptoms”, as with many other physiological conditions, mimic a variety of other physiological conditions. The key to remember here is that a Vampire NEEDS the energies he or she is drawing upon to maintain their physical, mental, and emotional balance. These symptoms include, but ar not limited to, Migraines, photo-sensitivity, obsessive/compulsive behavior, depression, and mood swings. There also seems to be an underlying psychic ability to hone in onn their specific energies needed to maintain their precarious balance.
COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS OF VAMPIRISM
The misconceptions of vampirism have become so widespread due to the popularization of fictional vampires, such as Dracula and Lestat, and the steady dogma pushed upon society as a whole by Catholicism and Judeao/Christians alike. This perpetuation of myth and misconception by religious forces has done nothing but create an air of fear and suspicion, to which psychologists and psychiatrists have added to this, stating that persons are not ‘suffering’ from vampirism but, instead, are suffering some sort of dementia or psychosis.
Some of the more common misconceptions surrounding vampirism are: Severe/deadly reaction to silver, severe/deadly reaction to garlic, adverse reactions to holy objects/holy ground/holy water, people of faith cause pain and/or suffering, sunlight is lethal, Cain is the father of all vampires, Lilith is the mother of all vampires, and vampires must either sleep in coffins or possess earth from their homelands in order to rest.
Another continually misguided misconception is that any vampire who is a practicing pagan of any path will only cause groups they are associated with to lose power. This is a fallacy derived from not knowing the extent of the vampire’s condition and what that particular vampire requires to build up their diminished essential energies. All too often, covens and practitioner groupings will drive a vampire away, when in fact, the vampire was the very person they needed to gain the energies needed for a particular spell working.
Not every party you go to will have a vampire draining the life out of the party. There can be a number of things besides vampires, including an unwanted ex boy/girlfriend showing up or an untrained empathic person going through a really hard time shows up. Don’t just jump to the easiest conclusion. Generally, the easiest answer is the wrong one.
There are organizations out there that are trying to combat these misconceptions (and others), yet I caution all who read this, that there are those that are fully immersed in these misconceptions and perpetuate the myths. Research is going to be a key thing for you… Research everything. Get to know the people involved. Read everything.
Find which rings true to you and begin your journey there.
If you are going to separate vampires into categories of energy you might want to add Psi (Chi, Prana, Qi) or life energy not just the three you list. Psychic energy and Psi energy are very different.
The Moon is my mother, The night is my world. In the dark, I hunt for the souls of the world. By Air, Fire, Water, and Earth the spell is cast.
I suppose I’m still torn between which label I am. I know I feed/need energies. I suppose I am more Pranic than Psychic, Empathic or Elemental (and what-have-you). I’ve only used Pranic over recent time assuming it was synonymous with Psychic and Psionic – “Energy” being the all-encompassing, over generalized umbrella term. I was just more comfortable with it I think. Pranic, in this context, is most fitting, but adaptive or eclectic also fit (and always sorta have).
I’ve been recently considering blood to be a better source for me. I’ve found I exhibit a large number of the symptoms Sangs and med sangs describe and energy is seeming less and less satisfactory lately, but I’ve not lived on blood since ever. So I don’t think I’m truly med. sang./sanguivore. Perhaps it’s simply the -touch- based thing that is the common denominator here. Perhaps while blood could be my best source, it is not physically the blood I need.
Thank you for this perspective, Zaar
You wouldnt be the first Vampire to find blood is an excellent conduit for energy, as well as what Sangs and Med Sangs believe we get from it.
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