Modern vampirism, a Pandora’s Box or Mother nature’s gift?
Presented by: Tim
Our guests this evening are;
John Reason, RVN Owner a Sanguine vampire whose donor is his wife.
Octarine Valur, Magister, Mintaka Halo (SAVA) Founder of the South African Vampyre Alliance (SAVA) Primus, House Valur Vampyre Coven Editor: SA Vampyre News and Editor: Vampyre Bytes.
Starfire, Psi-vampire and Administrative Staff Member of Smoke and Mirrors.
and Angel Night, Energy Manipulator, Psi Vampire/Healer, Paranormal Investigator and Owner/Author of ‘Walking By The Light Of The Moon’ web-blog.
In discussions of modern vampirism, distinguished by the professed need to consume blood or life-energy from another person or source, how many times have you read posts, threads, debates or commentary about whether it is a “gift or a curse”? Did modern vampirism come from the fabled Pandora’s Box, did it come from nature as an evolutionary branching or, did it come from some divine source? The truth is we may well never know the answer to that question.
Like many topics in the vampire community this particular question is rather more complicated than simply drawing up a list of pro’s and cons and deserves the best effort that can be made, not simply to answer the question but also to understand, and become more comfortable with, the nature of the vampire within.
The modern vampire is a blend of “human”, or “mundane” as they are termed, and “vampire” and it is this blending of beings that may cause questions and conflicts to arise within the individual. The resolution to these conflicts is also to be found within the individual and the ability to reduce the impact that the “vampirism” component may have on daily life and routines is, likewise, within the individual. There is no doubt that different vampiric-people hold different views about their nature and their views are undoubtedly strongly influenced by their emotional and psychological predisposition.
In order to consider modern vampirism a “gift” it is necessary to demonstrate either that the drawbacks are negligible or of no concern to the individual when compared with the positive benefits they derive from their vampirism, or to demonstrate that the consideration of any drawbacks is considered irrelevant.
In order to consider modern vampirism a “curse” it is necessary to demonstrate either, that the drawbacks outweigh the benefits gained, or that the benefits also induce some feeling of “inappropriateness” of behaviour when compared with the sensibilities of the “human” part of the person.
The questions that each of our guests were kind enough to consider were:
1) Considering the effects, if any that your vampirism has on your life would you say that your vampirism is a positive thing or not?
John: “I would say that overall, my vampirism has both positive and negative effects which level out at a rough neutral. For instance, blood cravings are not fun, nor are the symptoms that accompany the cravings. However, blood is good. Like everything, it has its ups and downs – some days are better than others.”
Octarine V. “Discovering who and what I am, and my self-acceptance of that fact – has helped to make me whole as a person, and I have got to know myself better. From that point of view, it is positive. Being vampiric, I find myself to be emotionally needy, especially when in need of a feed. This need threatens to destabilize the rest of my life, and so from that point of view, it is a bad thing – but again, realizing my nature is an advantage because I can compensate for it. I suppose this will always be an endless 50/50. Positive or negative, depends on which questions you ask.”
Starfire: “My vampirism has had many effects on my life, mostly with day to day life but even with my social life. It has changed my views on certain things, like making me more tolerant of others then I was before. It has made me want to be in a relationship with someone who is either kin or can be understanding of me and what I am. It is definitely more positive then negative.”
Angel: “This is not a simple yes or no question for me.
Without my understanding of this condition I would still be living with chronic illness. Here is a bit of the highlights from my life previous to addressing my energy needs.
I was born three months premature. Had to spend the first few weeks of my life in an incubator. I had physical issues with an underdeveloped digestive system, a prolapsed mitral valve and problems with my immune system that eventuated in a tracheotomy at age two.
My childhood memories include having to live with a steam tent over my bed till age 8 in order to support my breathing whenever I became ill. The fact that I am also allergic to anything that grows in my state along with mold and dust basically means that I experience year round allergies. That, in itself, creates more stress on my immune system.
Here is the amazing thing for me. After I tried every vitamin and herbal program you could imagine in order to improve my immune system; tried alternative medicines and intensive ‘healing work’, I discovered, or ‘awakened’ to my energy vampirism… within a few months of consciously seeking out energy and bringing my energy levels up I began to see an amazing change in my health. It was the proof I needed to help me accept this new found understanding of my immune system and how to finally make a difference. Today, I still get ill from time to time but, my chronic illness is a thing of the past. I wish I had understood this about myself earlier in my life, what a different story I could tell. I am grateful for the change and will always see it as a blessing more than a burden.
2) Do you feel alienated from human society, at times, or frequently, knowing that you are a vampire?
John: “I definitely do. Often times I can fit right into society just like everyone else. We all have things that make us difference. That is what makes us all the same. Other times, I really want to be able to talk to someone about what is going on with me in relation to my vampirism – and it could cost me a friend, my job, my college career, or other consequences.”
Octarine V. “Often. Especially when mundanes take their health or independence for granted. Or when they condemn others for being different to them, often without having the faintest clue as to why people are different to them, what makes them different, or when they express contempt for diversity.”
Starfire: “I feel alienated from human society occasionally. There are times when I wish I could come totally out of the coffin, but it would be disastrous if I did with some people.”
Angel: “Yes, in many ways. I am still struggling against the negative attitudes and perceptions regarding energy vampirism. I already know what its like to be judged or looked at like I’m crazy. Being sensitive to energies and having numerous experiences that fall outside of typical reality have created that all too familiar feeling for me already…I find that my vampirism is one more thing to add to the list.
All one need do is surf the web to see the general consensus regarding energy vamps. We are not portrayed in the best of light and in fact there are entire books and articles dedicated to protecting people from us energy vamps.
So yes, I feel that I am not accepted and am forced to hide this part of who I am.”
3) Do you find it difficult or easy to maintain yourself and your vampiric needs?
John: “I actually find it quite difficult to maintain my vampiric needs. Taking the time to sit down and drink blood can be a lot harder than people might think. Beyond the simple logistics, there are a lot of emotional complications as well. The most bothersome is knowing that living as a vampire means that I have to hurt my wife (even a tiny bit) to stay healthy.”
Octarine V. “I would like to say ‘easy’, but honestly it’s a struggle. When I have access to a donor it’s complicated for so many reasons. When I don’t, it’s so hard to procure usable blood.”
Starfire: “I usually find it relatively easy to maintain my vampiric needs, since I am a psi feeder. I tend to feed mostly from what most would call elementals (storms, plants, rocks, water) along with ambient and sexual feeding. I only find it hard to maintain when I am super stressed or my health conditions are extremely out of whack.”
Angel: “Difficult. I have found that my system responds the best to the energy of other people. I have donors that I am blessed to have found and consider as friends and family. So many times I have tried to go without or use natural sources of energy but, I find myself feeling rundown and begin experiencing my previous immune challenges in a very short space of time.”
4) Do you think you would be happier or feel more settled if you did not have to accommodate your vampirism in your daily life?
John: “Yes, I think I would be happier. While vampirism can be fun, fine, and dandy once in a while, the hunger pangs, side effects and symptoms are enough that it just isn’t worth it most of the time. It is hard to look at something that has had such a profound (be it good or bad) effect on my life, and consider dismissing it. Would I give up a part of what has made me the man I am today? Would I be a better person, husband, son, (hopefully soon to be) father? Right now I can say that I would give it up, but if a miracle cure was right in front of me, I am not so certain that I would readily grab for it.”
Octarine V. “It’s hard to answer that one. I’m not even sure what would make me feel happier or more settled even if my vampirism were openly accepted. It’s part of who I am, so I suppose if I were someone without this need or nature, I wouldn’t be thinking at all like I am now – meaning that I would be a different person, and would think like a non-vampiric.”
Starfire: “I might but I wouldn’t want to be anything other than what I am. I truly feel I awakened for a reason, even if it’s just to help newbies or any kin with the knowledge that I have learned.”
Angel: “If ….I could ensure my health would not be impacted and I would continue to enjoy my newfound health, then yes. I would be happier as a non-vampiric person. I feel as though I am living two different lives. The one I present to the everyday world and the one only few friends and family are aware of. It would be wonderful to not have to live this way.
5) How would you describe your vampirism in a broad sense?
John: “I like to describe my vampirism a lot more simply than a lot of folks. I crave blood. Yep, that is mostly it. There are several symptoms; hunger pangs, and others which I can not say with certainty and verifiable scientific proof that they are connected. An example – I have pain in my back and left knee that started to get very bad a few years ago. Since then I have seen eleven doctors of various type and caliber. Data is inconclusive, or doesn’t add up to the pain that I feel every moment of my life. It could be argued that my various health issues have been brought on by underfeeding my vampiric needs. I try not to travel into that territory, as I have no proof. Until I can be certain as to what stands for a standard case of vampirism, I have adopted the phrase “Personal Vampirism.” My personal vampirism shows itself through my blood cravings. In the past I was extremely sensitive to various types of light. For each vampire, the experience is a little different, and I think that we should acknowledge that instead of trying to sweep it under the rug for fear someone will find out that we don’t really know exactly what is going on with us.”
Octarine V. “I am a vampiric individual, which to me means I have a need to consume the essence of another living being in order to retain mental balance and physical health. In my case this means a need for modest quantities of blood, preferably human. When I don’t obtain enough blood, I face unpleasant consequences. The combined result of these effects often leads to self-doubt and even a sense of isolation.”
Starfire: “It is a way of life for me. It means that I need extra energies to be at my best. It means that I am part of a community of others that have the same issues as I do.”
Angel: “An energy or life-force deficiency that creates a physical need to harvest energy from outside sources. The inability to sustain ones own life-force at optimal levels in order to support the human energy system which affects not only the physical but, the more subtle systems as well. Impacting the Body, mind and spirit in such a way as to not be fully understood by today’s science or philosophies.
Author Note: In this case the general interpretation of the answers might well be that there is more non-positive than positive, however, as John points out, “I would say that overall, my vampirism has both positive and negative effects which level out at a rough neutral.”
Again, I derive a sense of balance at play here and see the vampirism as benefits counteracting negatives and vice versa. A sense of neutrality in the balance almost.
Four different modern vampires, four sets of answers and, in my estimation, a balance and harmony that while it may be difficult to accommodate at times is, nevertheless, not intolerable.
In light of the input from these community members we can now consider the question afresh. Is modern vampirism a gift or a curse?
In view of the answers that were kindly provided I would draw the conclusion that it is neither. It is not a gift since it can be difficult to maintain the vampiric side in peak condition at all times and it is not a curse since there is no lamenting of the situation, it is simply accepted as a fact of life and a necessary part of daily living that must needs be managed just as any other part of living such as health and nutrition. I suggest that the vampirism is as natural a part of the life of the modern vampire as any of the human aspects of their lives are.
©Real Vampire News 2011
Grateful thanks to: Angel Night, Octarine Valur, Starfire and John Reason for their input
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