Real Vampires – The hardest thing about being us Pt: 4

Heather Brewer’s ‘Vladimir Tod’ series, High School Bites

Written and Presented by

Tim

In October of 2012 I began writing a series of short papers under the working title “The Hardest Thing About Being Us”. The first part focused on questions of how we interact with the non-Vampire.

The second part, “Real Vampires – The hardest thing about being us” Part 2, turned attention to some of the dynamic of the sub-culture.

With Part 3,  Real Vampires – The hardest thing about being us Pt: 3 We took a look into the topics of“Acceptance”, “Leaders and Followers”, “Protectionism” and “Welcoming and Helping Our Own”

This time it’s…

Real Vampires – One of the hardest things about being us 4

Integrating the “dayside”, the “nightside” and our culture

In part one of this particular series, written in October of 2012, I wrote about how we, the modern vampire culture, interacts with non-Vampires. The second part centred on the prevailing dynamic within the culture and part 3 explored the topics of acceptance, leaders and followers, protectionism and helping our own. One of the things that I haven’t yet addressed, I believe in any editorial or article I have written, is the subject of our innate knowledge, our belief in ourselves and how we deal with the integration of both “dayside” and “nightside” into our “every day”.

Individual Priorities

These are the things that drive everyday effort and activity, things such as paying the bills, keeping a job (no matter how soul destroying and psychologically damaging that job may be) keeping food on the table, keeping a roof over the head, keeping the car running, looking after growing children, dealing with health issues and social media.

Yep, that’s right, I said that at the end because social media, from reports, studies, observations and statistics has taken such a huge and all pervasive place in modern life that it now almost parallels any of the other “priorities”. Is this a real addition, an imagined addition or a forced addition to life?

Let’s see if we can “prioritise” the list, and please bear in mind this is my opinion of how this list should look…

1) Keeping a job. Unfortunately the majority of employers (certainly in the state I live in, have realised this and play on it. Ruling the workplace by fear and paying low wages because they are fully aware that they have people at their mercy.

2) Keeping roof over the head. Without the roof you can’t maintain your food supply, you can’t maintain your health, you can’t get proper rest.

3) Keeping food on the table. If you don’t eat you die… simple enough.

4) Looking after the children/family. Having a family ensures that you MUST assume responsibility as a protector and provider. It’s a duty that comes with having a family.

5) Paying the bills. Heat, Light, Water, the Roof… If you don’t pay you don’t play.

6) Dealing with health issues. If you die you’re no good to anyone, yes?

7) Keeping the car running. It’s good not to have to use public transport, or rely on friends or taxi cabs.

8) Social Media. Following are several analytical tables that demonstrate the current impact (from 2017) of social media on personal communications trends.

But how does this relate to the modern Vampire culture you ask?

In a single group membership that we recently observed we found that of the total membership 42.857% actually participated in the group, on a particular issue, they had chosen to be in. It was also observed that, amongst the participation rate of six randomly selected “unsubs”, the ratio of personal use of social media to group representation using social media ran as follows;

Unsub 1, timeline posts 20, group posts 33

Unsub 2, timeline posts 1, group posts 2

Unsub 3, timeline posts 3, group posts 0

Unsub 4, timeline posts 25, group posts 4

Unsub 5, timeline posts 144, group posts 0

These figures were taken over a five week period from 1 June this year.

Oh, yes, I said SIX didn’t I,

Unsub 6, timeline posts 696 ( +/- 6) group posts 0 (unsub 6 was treated as a special case due to the fact they made a number of posts, 15 to be exact, within the nominated date range at an associated page and only 1 at the Group homepage.)

I would suggest that if something is important to a person they will commit, they will make specific time available to follow up on that commitment, they will actively contribute fresh material, new ideas and propose discussions or other “projects” that could potentially benefit the group… basically it’s that old chestnut that I’m sure we’ve all heard until our ears were bleeding from it, “Are you a team player?”

My question would be, “If you’re not a team player, why be on a team?”

Pic. source:
Trans-Atlantic Business Council

In a great number of groups around the online culture you can find, as part of the mission statement, the words, “for the betterment of the community”, in some form or another. This statement must be regarded in its true context, “for the betterment of the community in my/our opinion”… it is one of the indisputable truisms of the modern culture that no one has yet found “the way” to improve, overall, the culture even though they may find a way to better things for their immediate followers, or group members but even this will only last for a time.

I would suggest that the only person that can better things for themselves is them.

A number of discussions that have taken place lately have revolved around either the latest idea for improving things or for the improvement, in some manner, for small segments of self-interest collectives and, as such, these concepts hold very little for general, wide-spread and overall improvement.

At the heart of every thought, of every imagining and every decision taken by an individual is a knowledge of themselves and what is necessary and the best for them. This also is an indisputable fact and one that can’t be avoided in any group or cultural setting, agendas of one type or another will define in what direction the group leads, what flavour the group is and how deeply personal bias on the part of the Owner/s of the group will go in the running of the group.

So, what is truly “for the betterment…” and what is for “self-betterment”?

 

Pic. source: spreadshirt.co.uk


The sum of the parts…

How do we, as individuals in the “real” world accommodate the dual nature of our existence? How do we integrate and maintain the Vampiric need along with the “paying bills”, “keeping a job” and “managing a family”?

The answers will come from ourselves, they will come from how deeply we are willing to allow the two to integrate, they will come from how deeply we feel “the hunger” and, ultimately, they will come from just how much we are willing to commit to allowing integration to take place.

There has been much said, and written, about the modern Vampire culture. Unfortunately a great deal of it, constantly, negative. Everyone seems to be fully aware of the problems facing the culture but even after more than 30 years there have been no real, lasting and progressive solutions that have stood the test of time. Given the vast array of intelligence, experience and expertise that exists within the culture you would think that something would have come into being but still, even as late as four days ago, descriptions of the situation still read somewhat like this;

“The same old tired “discussions” over and over again, that we’ve all been having, carried over from the message boards 15 years ago?

Same old topics with newer younger faces?

There’s that, and also drama. More drama. Same fucking drama that always constantly circulates and permeates. Same juvenile bullshit about This One calling That One names, or over-reaching their “territory”, or some self-styled “royalty” of some kind issuing “proclamations” which essentially boils down to more name-calling…

We even have, to this day, self-appointed “leaders” telling the “flocks” not to listen to This One, or to not be friends with That One, and all of the “Oh look what they’re saying now” shit, and the “We won’t stand for this” crap.

It’s all fucking garbage.”

Following on from such a conclusion then might we not consider “taking out the garbage”?

Now hold on a minute pardners… I can hear you all saying, “Here it comes…”
I would ask, “Here what comes?”

Are we going to keep telling ourselves there is NO solution? If that’s true then we might as well all give up, go home and become solitaries.
Are we going to tell ourselves, “We welcome anyone within, associated with, or simply interested in…” and thereby promulgate the problems in separating the real modern living Vampires from wanton troublemakers, RPGers and Wannabe/Pretenders that we pretty much all profess to loathe so much?

 

Solutions

So, where do we go?
Back to a corner and sit on our hands? Into deep conference between all interested parties? Into a “Corporate Team Building Retreat”, or perhaps a “Tactical Withdrawal and Regroup” pattern? Into some sort of separationist tribal model?

Many times over the definitions of modern living Vampire have been written, re-written, discussed, re-hashed, deliberated on and then discussed some more and, for all of this over thirty plus years, we still have nothing universal to rely on. Indeed, as one person once remarked to me in a message board I frequented, “Words don’t actually just mean what the dictionary says, they also mean what people understand them to mean.”

“Uh Oh…!”
Pic source: Fistful of Talent

Faced with something like that, we are indeed sunk.

 

A presentation of the best available definitions comes to us from the “Terminology and Lingo” section of Sanguinarius.org [2] where the definitions of “sanguinarian”, “blood-drinker”, “blood fetishist”, “psychic vampire” and “Vampyre Lifestyler” are to be found, among others. Each are directly concerned with defining the term under certain conditions of activity they do not, however, concern themselves with defining motivation.

In considering the motivation behind the integration of “dayside” and “nightside” I would suggest that we could further break down the definitions, regardless of activity or practises. If I was asked to write up a table of Vampire types in the Culture I would create a dual list, one would contain the standard recognised “types by feeding method” i.e. Sang, Psi etc. The second part, or sub-division, of the list would be by “activity type”.

 

ILVamp – Integrated life Vamp – A modern living Vampire to whom their Vampirism is as much a part of them as their ethnicity, their biological condition and their natural psychological processes. A Vampire who does not, and cannot, separate their Vampirism out and in which it is as important a part of life as working, sleeping, eating, paying bills and creates, within them, a strong commitment to incorporating their Vampiric nature into their existence.

TPVamp – Time Permitting Vamp – A modern living Vampire who does not recognise that part of themselves as a priority in their daily existence and activities and will treat the matter as a lower priority than everything else in life even though it may compromise their health and wellbeing.

FVamp – Fetish Vamp, a human living Vampire who actively practices their feeding while regarding said act as an object regarded with awe as being the embodiment or habitation of a potent spirit or as having magical potency or any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion.

WSVamp – “When it suits” Vamp – A modern living Vampire, or perhaps not, who will only visit the issue in so far as it suits their personal need for attention, entertainment or gratification.

PVamp – “Pretend” Vamp – One who will pop up, regularly to spread dis-, or mis-, information, dress up and play vamp, join every single Vampire oriented group on social media and “farm” friends lists for contacts to make themselves appear to be a “mover and shaker” but at the end of the day are about as Vampire as my blessed Grandmother was a deep sea exploration diver; Gods rest her beautiful soul.

 

The situation, unfortunately, is not improving in any wide measure and because of that people actually begin to question not only their own commitment but the trust they may have placed in others along the way. People may begin to question whether there is actually a place for them in the modern culture, people may begin to question why they even stay in touch so not having solutions to offer may well be just as damaging to the culture as having solutions that cause arguments and dissent – it’s Devil and the Deep Blue Sea time.

Ultimately, dear reader, at days end the only person that knows who you are for sure is you, you do not know, for sure, who a great majority of the others in the culture are, and ultimately, whether you choose to integrate, or not, be a “team player” or not, is a decision that rests squarely with you.

Copyright T & RVL 2017

 

NB: This article may be linked to but may not be copied or reproduced, nor redistributed in any manner, including electronic without the express permission of the copyright owners.

The views and opinions presented in this article are the opinions of the author and/or contributors and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of The Owner/s of RVL, their officers, assigns or agents. RVL and its officers do not personally, individually, or jointly necessarily recommend or condone any of the activities or practices represented.

 Where used, quoted portions of other works are reproduced by permission, or under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, wherein allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research.

 For further information please see the RVL Website Disclaimer

 

New for old for old for new?

Written and presented by

Tim

Good evening,

In the way of all things, history especially, things do seem to turn in full circles over a course of time don’t you think?

Many topics, questions and subjects that have been visited in the past seem to find new life breathed into them from time to time and this is not necessarily a bad thing. Fresh eyes, looking at old problems, or questions, can very often see things that may have “slipped through the cracks” previously.

The subject, or rather subjects, of this editorial are twofold; firstly, the consideration of a perception that has been called “Med-Sang”, or Medical Sanguinarianism which engenders a proposed re-definition of “Vampire types” and, secondly, the renewed calls for “separation” from the overall culture by specific groups of real living Vampires.

It is sometimes difficult, given interactions and exposure to certain groups, to maintain a strictly neutral air when attempting to present information but I would like to assure everyone reading this that neither I, nor RVL, have a vested interest in these issues. We simply wish to bring the information to light so that our readers are in a position to make informed decisions about which sides of which fences they may wish to stand.


Img. source: ww.garkonda.altervista.org

Having said as much let us turn, initially, to the matter of a relatively newly coined phrase, “Med-Sang”. That is not to say, of course, that the concepts behind the “Med-sang” term are new, quite the reverse in fact.

From reading an article entitled, “Consider the Med Sang Point of View” presented at website The Red Cellar, we are given to understand that, quote, “Many blood drinking “Vampires” are turning their eyes towards possible medical explanations for their conditions, disregarding the glamour of the vampire image and focusing on how to quietly and safely acquire what is for them, the only medication they know of to effectively treat perceived physical and psychological symptoms.”

This, in its turn, leads us to seek a definition for exactly what a “Med-Sang” might actually be. An explanation can be found at the web resource Vampire Network News where the definition offered is contained in an editorial entitled, “The Case for Separation Of The Vampire Community [ And Its Benefits ]”. The term “Sanguivore” is contained in a list of “types” of Vampire created by the author of the work. These types are,
Cultural vampires, or people who choose to ingest blood, or energy but not in order obviate medical or psychological complications. These people are held to be such that practice vampire lifestyles and envelop themselves in the cultural aspects of the Vampire.

Next are the Energy vampires, described as those “who must intake energy (in various forms) in order to avoid potentially life-threatening medical complications and enhance their physiology”.

The third offered definition is “Sanguivores”, these Vampires are held to be those ingest blood so that they can avoid, “potentially life-threatening medical complications and enhance their physiology.”

The final definition is that of Hybrids, or, Vampires who must ingest “both blood and energy in order to avoid potentially life-threatening medical complications and enhance their physiology.”

The Suscitatio Lexicon [1] provides some further delineation of types in its definition of Sanguinarian where it records that, “Sanguinarian vampires can vary in their experience of blood hunger and in how often or in what quantities they need to feed, but the unique craving for blood and the physical symptoms associated with neglecting to drink blood are unifying features of sanguinarian vampirism.

It goes on to say that, “there is a popular but not universally-held theory within the Community that the life force energy or “prana” contained within the blood is the source from which they feed, rather than any physical component of the blood itself. This theory is supported by the notably small amount of blood that vampires consume to alleviate their hunger, but challenged by the fact that vampires who consider themselves primarily blood drinkers often do not display as many or any of the psychic tendencies that psychic vampires do, and more often report more physical symptoms, such as sense acuity and physical strength, than do the psychic vampires.”

Indeed, it can get confusing, even, we suspect, within the Sanguinarian population.

From the articles at both The Red Cellar and The VNN we are led to understand that the Med-Sang is of the “Sanguivore” type of modern living Vampire, i.e. one who MUST ingest blood to stay alive, to avoid threats, possibly fatal, to mind and/or body and who experiences “enhanced physiology”.

This distinction raises several unanswerable questions and the first and foremost of these is, “What, exactly, is the component in blood that keeps modern Sanguine Vampires from becoming physically or psychologically unwell?” Of course, at this time, there is no identification of that component available so the effects of the blood intake can’t be gauged because there are no indicators to measure against. There are a great many reports, some from very creditable sources that describe what a “lack of blood feeding” can lead to. The problem is that these are anecdotal evidences, not empirical and although these sources are impeccable in themselves the shot that the hard-line sceptics will fire off with, every time, is, “Prove it”. The truth is, at this point in time there is no “proof” available, there is no “empirical evidence” in support of the Med Sang point of view, however, consider this, as of 2012, 2.2 billion Christians believed in God… [2]

I haven’t seen any proof of him around the place, have you? However, the faith and belief in this deity provides the inspiration for millions upon millions to “get through” life. Belief can be a very strong ally indeed.

Img. source: desertcart.ae

It would do everyone well to remember that modern Vampires, of any type or description, are NOT obliged to “prove” anything to anyone, no more than a Christian has to “prove” their God exists and the naysayers should accept that they have no right to demand such proof, much less to feel they are owed such proof.

The Med-Sang cultural element are, as is anyone else, perfectly entitled to their beliefs, perceptions and their own places to discuss such, what they do not have the right to do, however, is to attempt to impose; either directly, or indirectly, their cultural sub-set labels on anyone else and this is where any appeal for wider recognition of their existence can fall through.  Somebody once commented to me, roughly, that, “words don’t always mean what they mean in the dictionary, they mean what the majority of people understand them to mean.” In essence, if I convinced enough people that the colour of a summer sky was actually green then blue would become the new green… only one problem, where would that leave poor old green?

Med-Sangs employ the term to describe, within their own faction, the meaning of their perceived, and believed, condition or their “normal” state of being. Outside of that environment the term has little meaning to anyone who is not a Med-sang but it does, however, identify a person as being from that particular cultural group – whether we understand it or not and at this time, to all intents and purposes, that is the aim. Another issue may, and has done, raise its head, what about people who don’t agree with the “Med-sang” perspective? What’s to be done with them?

In one word, tolerance. It doesn’t matter how loudly someone yells to make themselves heard, it doesn’t matter what rhetoric or explanations they choose to employ, it doesn’t matter what insults they may throw at people who don’t “believe” the fact remains that anything that challenges another’s beliefs, challenges another’s perception and challenges another’s understanding will be met with various levels of resistance. The true test of the theory is whether those proposing the new theory are able, or competent, to mount a defence of their position based in logic, fact and plausible surmise. Biting back often does more harm than good and, in the case of the early reports of the ‘Med-sang’ issue this caused some great commotion, a great deal of angst and even ended up setting friend against friend. Not a great start if you’re looking for acceptance and recognition.

Img. source: louisdietvorst,wordpress.com

 

This brings us, in a semi-direct manner, to the second point of this editorial. By involving themselves, predominantly, in the case for separation of the Vampire Culture by Vampire type they are seeking to categorize the entire membership of the global culture according to their own definitions. This is fine within their own circles and enclaves but this, more than any other factor, could be the very thing that will see any attempt to separate the culture, ultimately, fail. Rather than separation, which has not been declared as an absolute end goal of the Med-Sang contingent, it would seem that a partial separation would be better considered. Perhaps a good compromise might be a group, or groups, where Med-Sangs can be and can discuss their own business, the business of discovering what and who they are, if that’s the case then fine but, in open discussions and multi-membership forums in combined web resources; that is websites where Vampires and Otherkin of diverse types gather, there have been instances where other members of the Vampire culture have been ridiculed and harangued for voicing their opinions against the case for separation.

Now, you might say that this is normal for the online vampire environment and that, unfortunately, is why so many good and possibly productive discussions come apart and lose all semblance of the rational. Perhaps the honoured Deacon Gray, Member of House of the Dreaming, was not so very far off the mark when he opined that a good name for a group of Vampires would be “a ‘bicker’ of Vampires”.

Img. source: Big Think.com

A question, at this point, if I may… do you think that if the Vampire culture were segregated according to type the bickering, the insults, the tantrums and the rhetoric might achieve a more rational level of productive talks? I wonder…

Forming a self-interest group to tackle such issues and questions necessarily needs to include people from ALL sectors influenced by such things so that a balanced outcome and view of the subject is achieved, without this you simply have an “exclusionist” group.

 

The case for separation of the Vampire Culture has been alive and kicking since the early days of the online culture when Lady Amy Kreiytaz was writing of  a psi versus sang separatism, it was the topic of an article written, and presented in Lady CG’s “Smoke and Mirrors”, by CJ, then The Infamous CJ, entitled, “A Sanguinarian Treatise: An Argument For Partition From The Vampire Community”, which has been reposted at The Red Cellar, and, most recently in the previously mentioned, “The Case for Separation Of The Vampire Community [ And Its Benefits ]” and subsequent discussions held at the web resource Vampire Network News. It is, in essence, an old chestnut, it is a problem that has not been resolved in some three decades or more, thus it is not a problem that is going to go away because one group within the culture wants to break away.

In speaking of the article, “Separation Of The Vampire Community [And Its Benefits]” Lady Jane More of The Vampire Network wrote;

the piece doesn’t actually support the idea of “us vs them”. What it does do is gently and respectively present the concept of us vs Us; microcosms based on specifically nurtured needs, catering to individuals in a way that enables them to feel safe, learn, and grow unhindered. Protecting the most vulnerable among us in a way that just might save lives, instead of risking them. It asks that we put aside any and all kinds of power struggles for collective spaces, so we may ultimately enable greater cooperation and understanding in the future. When fully developed microcosms can come together to form a non-contentious whole.”

Lady Lia Tajra of The Vampire Network, went on to note;

By partitioning into smaller groups based on physical and mental commonality, there is a better opportunity for individuals to understand themselves, find the community that suits them best, grow there, and become ambassadors for their subtype who can THEN reach out to other subtypes and establish a clearer, stronger and more cohesive GVC.”

The situation at the heart of the problem is, indeed, far, far older than these discussions and perspectives, it comes back to the very basic of necessities for progress and improvement… one word answer…

Img. source:
the standard.co.zw

Whether or not the Med-Sang movement decides to withdraw from the wider culture, so be it… everyone MUST respect the decision. Whether people agree or disagree with the “Separatists”, so be it but everyone MUST respect the point of view of the separatist contingent. Whether people completely without vested interest either way have questions and opinions, or not, their right to voice those questions and/or opinions is inviolable and should be respected.

For everyone who wants someone to respect their rights, they MUST, in turn, respect the rights of that someone and until that situation is resolved an “agreeable” separation of anything is never going to work.

Img. source: pixedit.com

The only remaining option then is for the Med-Sang people to leave and set up their own place. If the Psi contingent don’t want to endure what they see as devaluation and/or criticism then the ONLY option they have is to separate from the wider culture. If the Hybrid contingent want their own home place, free of interference or mischief, then the ONLY option they have is to completely separate themselves from the wider culture.

In fact, if you think about it, if you don’t have, and exercise, a level of common decency and respect then, well, you already have separation.

Copyright TB & RVL 2017

Refs:

  1. http://www.suscitatio.com/research/definitions.html
  2. ANALYSIS (2011-12-19). “Global Christianity”. Pewforum.org. Retrieved 2012-08-17.

Further references:

“True Blood? Not Yet.” [http://www.vampire.network/community/true-blood-not-yet/]

NB: This article may be linked to but may not be copied or reproduced, nor redistributed in any manner, including electronic without the express permission of the copyright owners.

The views and opinions presented in this article are the opinions of the author and/or contributors and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of The Owner/s of RVL, their officers, assigns or agents. RVL and its officers do not personally, individually, or jointly necessarily recommend or condone any of the activities or practices represented.

Where used, quoted portions of other works are reproduced by permission, or under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, wherein allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research.

For further information please see the RVL Website Disclaimer

 

Crossroads 2016

 

RVLE-Zine_Crosroads2016_picPresented by

Tim

Dissertatio de solutione huius civitatis

Good evening,
Welcome to 2016. For some weeks I have been mulling over how to write this first Crossroads article for this year, mulling over not only how to write it but also why. How can we describe the sub-culture of 2015? How can we assess the impact and the efficacy of the construct? What can we learn from last year, a year that was, by any measure, a tough one.

I started by looking back over 2015, looking back over what has actually happened, looking over the commentaries, some of the opinions, some of the discussions that were held at the RVL Social Group. I suppose you might call it a sort of, “2015 – The year that was” exercise, and then the mind automatically jumps to the obvious question, “Was what?”

Everybody, or very nearly everybody, is well aware of the history of the VC/OVC; the chronology of the formation and growth, the stages of growth that the fledgling society of modern living vampires navigated to arrive, ultimately, at last year.
1966 – Anne de Molay establishes the Order of Maidenfear.
1969 – Creation of ARPANET, the predecessor of the Internet.
1975 – The Order of The Vampyre is founded by priests of the Church of Satan.
1976 – House Sahjaza is formed in New York City.
1989 – The secretive; international, Temple of The Vampire (ToV) is founded.
1993 – The Sanguinarium is founded by Father Sebastian Todd. This leads to the establishment of the Ordo Strigoi Vii.
1997 – The “Long Black Veil & the Vampyre Lounge” events began on the second Wednesday of each month at the legendary MOTHER nightclub in New York City. “The Black Veil” document is authored, it was written as a code of conduct for patrons of the vampyre haven, “Long Black Veil”, in New York City.
Also, in the Northern Spring of 1997 the first webpage of Sanguinarius.org appeared.
1999 – Sphynxcat’s Real Vampires Support Page is established on the internet and the website Vampire-church.com was first registered in April.
2000 – COVICA, a council of collected elders from different traditions, again revised the Black Veil. It was at this time that the publication gained widespread popularity and was translated into Portuguese, German and Spanish. It was also distributed as the “13 Rules of the Community”.

Thirty-four years to build into a much needed resource, a place of guidance and support, and an avenue of communications for the myriad scattered individuals who considered themselves to be markedly different from the ordinary human being but; in a great many cases, didn’t know why. The ideologies and the needs were recognized and the structures were put in place to provide a social framework for the human living vampyre population… a little over three decades of effort, growth, organization and “reaching out” to each other, so, looking back at 2015 I asked myself, “It took thirty-four years to develop, where have we arrived at in the intervening fifteen?”

Tell me something, do you sometimes lean back from the computer with a stricken expression, yell “medic” and wish you could be ‘medi-vacked’ away from the infernal machine?

img source: "Platoon" - Hemdale Film (presents) & Cinema 86 (uncredited)

img source: “Platoon” – Hemdale Film (presents) & Cinema 86 (uncredited)

Do you spend time at the computer and feel like one of those who DIDN’T make it out of the “Event Horizon”?

img source: "Event Horizon" - Golar Productions, Impact Pictures, Paramount Pictures

img source: “Event Horizon” – Golar Productions, Impact Pictures, Paramount Pictures

Do you often get the feeling that you’re in the cast of Mad Max 2?

img source: "Mad Max 2" (The Road Warrior 2) - Kennedy Miller Entertainment (made by) (as A KENNEDY MILLER ENTERTAINMENT Production also) Kennedy Miller Productions

img source: “Mad Max 2” (The Road Warrior 2) – Kennedy Miller Entertainment (made by) (as A KENNEDY MILLER ENTERTAINMENT Production also) Kennedy Miller Productions

Then I know what you’ve been doing, you’ve been hanging around the VC/OVC…

Any social or cultural entity needs to be able to rely on certain dynamics to become better, to become stronger and sustainable. At the April 2013 “Dialogue of Civilizations” in Guatemala City, Guatemala, representatives from the U.S., U.K., Egypt, India, China, Taiwan, and Guatemala met to discuss the patterns of establishment, development and eventual dissolution of civilisations. Indian delegate, and author, Sadashivan Nair noted;
“Strong cultural and religious growth play important role for a strong society, gives strong identity to one society which initiates other small societies to join or bigger population of same society who follow their ideology. Thus a large and strong society is established.”

I would venture to suggest that over the last fifteen years the modern living vampire sub-culture has not enjoyed such strength, has not enjoyed such growth and has not enjoyed the benefits of being able to develop into a, “large and strong society”, indeed, the whole seems to be more fragmented now than at any other time I can remember since coming to the web, the OVC and beginning to interact with, and observe, the VC at work in around 2002.

post_apocalypse_u_s__capitol_by_myjavier007-d6rs262
The sub-culture of the modern living vampire is reminiscent, now, of a veritable post-apocalyptic landscape in which leaders of small bands of outcasts, nomads and survivors have created camps to which the people who feel they can trust only a small number have gravitated. Maximum security measures are put in place for the safety and the peace of mind of the members of these “cyber-gypsy” camps but in the end analysis the entire construct has reverted to the “wasteland” from which it was born. Even the larger, almost iconic organisations of the modern VC/OVC struggle to maintain integrity and direction in the face of internal pressures. Groups that were established on high ideals and given hundreds of hours of tending and nurturing by their owners and officers have fallen prey to, and I quote, “bitching”, “in-fighting”, “sniping”, “back biting”, “B.S.” and “Drama” or they have, and again I quote, “stalled due to B.S. and drama.”

There are a couple of points I’d like to make here, firstly, B.S. and “drama” can only exist where they are permitted to exist. What’s the old saying, “As ye sow, so shall ye reap,” ~ rather apt I think, don’t you?
The second point, “drama” is “a composition in prose or verse presenting in dialogue or pantomime a story involving conflict or contrast of character, especially one intended to be acted on the stage, or, alternatively, the branch of literature having such compositions as its subject; dramatic art or representation.

What we have, by the bucket-load is NOT drama it is “stupidity”, plain and simple and until we can find an answer to “stupid” then we are going to keep following the same well-worn trails and pathways that keep us circulating between an ever growing number of camps with a finite number of credible people.

Some of the self-inflicted problems of 2015, in fact, beggared belief. We saw social media accounts being “hacked” and private messages taken away, commercial websites of people in the sub-culture hacked and torn down… websites that form part of their income and livelihood. Salacious reports of allegations of immoral and predatory, if not criminal, activities from New Orleans, drug addicted wannabe blackmailers hijacking websites and turning them into “hate sites”, sociopathic sycophantic mundanes trolling every single group or organization they could get near for the sole purpose of creating and spreading chaos and ill-feeling. Great Houses and Courts torn apart by internal intrigues and politics, personal betrayals by persons of not only ill-repute but dubious personal histories. We have witnessed death threats, including pictures of bullets with people’s names written on a piece of paper that the round was lying on posted…

img source - en.wikipedia.org

img source – en.wikipedia.org

Death threats? REALLY? Is that what we built this for? Is this what we come to it for?

Add to this the fact that on an ever expanding front we, as a sub-culture, have been exposed, whether we wanted to be or not. Media outlets ranging from ABC News & Radio, Anchorage Press (Alaska, USA) the BBC (U.K.) Buffalo News (New York, USA) The Christian Science Monitor, El Mundo (Spain) Excelsior (Mexico) The Express Tribune Magazine (Pakistan) FAST Online (Germany) FATE Magazine, FOX 8 News (Ohio, USA) the India Times, the Irish Examiner, Men’s Health Magazine, the Miami Herald, Newsweek, New York Daily News, Psychology Today, The Guardian, Urban Magazine (Bosnia-Herzegovina) and the Washington Post have carried commentaries about us.

Make no mistake, we have been “outed”, we have been made public property and have been held up to public scrutiny in an ever widening circle and you know what the funny thing is, I don’t recall anyone asking me if it was okay to do that for me… however, since it’s been, and is being, done wouldn’t it be interesting to get a real gauge of how people outside of, and not involved or in contact with, the sub-culture regard modern human living vampires? What do you suppose the reactions might be?

"La-push" copyright L Oburn

“La-push” copyright L Oburn

So, we must also weigh in the fact that along with all the dangerous and potentially harmful events that occurred during 2015, the fact that somewhere, in some place, someone, or a group of someone’s, has decided that their agenda; be it personal, commercial or whatever, supersedes the discretion required to keep the members of our sub-culture safe and “out of harm’s way”. Indeed, we only have to look to the continual flow of requests that we received at RVL, such as;

“To rvlmail@yahoo.com
Hello there,im from ******** ,Macedonia. i wanna turn into a vampire.How can i be one? just reply to my email,and we will discuss further”
Or, more disturbing,
“I would give up my life to become one of you, please tell me what to do?”

Let me pose the obvious question here, because you can be sure no one else will – what if someone does take their own life, or worse allow someone else to do so, in the false belief that they can actually become what we are? Who would be responsible?

Now, there are people who are going to cry “foul”, people who are going to bleat about “everything being fine”, people who are going to insist, “well, we’re no different to any other segment of society,” and beyond our borders people who think that “these people who say they are vampires are real, are crazy and dangerous”

Are we going to sleep easily at night? Telling ourselves that people who don’t or can’t understand, even after we have “advertised” our existence, are just plain nuts? – THAT, folks, IS B.S.

VCOVC_wasteland_color1Another interesting phenomena that rose to some prominence in 2015 was the concept of having an organization that went about collecting “evidence” of wrongdoing by members of the sub-culture. Collecting “evidence” and archiving each little bit to build, presumably, a case against particular persons. The problem becomes that when “gossip”, “rumour” and “conjecture” are melded together with personal animosities and snippets of conversations edited to provide the lynchpins in the “chain of evidence” then it ceases to become a “watchdog” and becomes more akin to a “hanging court” that has no mandate, no jurisdictional right and no authority; a hanging court that promotes allegations of ‘culpable negligence’ in the death of others and in the process it simply becomes a hate group ruled by personal bias and hidden agenda.

A relative latecomer to the scene may prove to be a good start in picking up on those, “few bad apples” that we are constantly hearing about. The formation of a new resource to provide, what the organization terms, “Community Wide Warnings” about individuals but being very new it is not yet clear how the mechanics of the process work. A representative of the resource says, of the project;
“The main objective of the Directory, which again is renamed. Real Vampyre Directory. Is to inform others of a location to find covens, groups, courts, houses, and events that take place in our side of the community. It is strictly to inform those listed of other communities. It also from time to time serves the purpose of warning those that are a threat to the communities in one form or another.”
The representative goes on to explain;
“This **** ***** has surfaced once, and so far no further information is being reported on. This could easily be a case of one lone individual who seems to know what is best in someone else’s eyes. Nothing more, unless more information is provided or worked upon, nothing will come of it. This also requires victims and survivors to come forward and speak about it in a private setting. To be ensured they are protected. The archive provides this in its settings. Unless survivors come forward and are willing to explain the details, much of it is personal in nature. We as a group cannot move forward, we are limited. One transgression is hardly anything more than a complaint. Unless others are willing to discuss such matters,”

img source: "Fallout" series by Interplay Entertainment

img source: “Fallout” series by Interplay Entertainment

An example of the standard “inertia”, or rather, “negative inertia”, has already been recognized some years back. The concept was very neatly summed up in the following statement;
“We’re generally growing older as a community faster than we’re replacing with new participants who are willing to stick around – that and they often perceive less areas where they can contribute so there is a net – negative matriculation effect.” [1]

It is a situation that can’t be avoided, it is, in fact, a situation that I had addressed some time back while I was still a member of the VCMB, and still trying to muster interest/care about the documented situation of declining activity.

At this juncture I’ll ask another two obvious questions, “Are we letting the RIGHT ones in?”, and, “Are we tending our own backyard in an acceptable manner that supports aiming for acceptance outside our sub-culture?”

In Conclusion:
2016 needs to be, in essence, a retrospective and introspective year. We need to step back and look at the whole picture. It’s all there before us in glorious living colour – mostly centered around social media.
Are we going to continue on the same path we have been travelling until the sub-culture becomes completely overwhelmed and dissolute?, what are positive things that have happened, within the sub-culture, during 2015?, can we look to a better quality of interaction, personal conduct and even personal effort in 2016?

Everything that I’ve put down in this editorial is verifiable, IT’S ALL OUT THERE – just do a bit of searching, a bit of looking around, talk to others… for every example I’ve used I’m sure you can come up with half a dozen others but I think, for me, a very recent single post that was made on Facebook; a post at once succinct and deeply indicative of the attitude that is spreading among a great many members of the sub-culture made me think long and hard. I quote;

“The VC it seems is crumbling. Fix your madness”

Can we? Can we fix the madness that seems to have taken root within the VC/OVC? Can we eradicate it? Limit it to a minor annoyance? Cure it? What do you think dear reader?

During this year at RVL we are going to continue being observers and commentators, we are going to be, as is our preference, neutral and unaffiliated presenters and interested onlookers. We are going to expand our operation and our new 2016 team members will be looking for events, happenings and occurrences which we will investigate, interview, evaluate and present commentary and editorials on, so, if you want to read about good stuff feel free to send in your suggestions, if you want to tell of nefarious goings on, go ahead, tell us about it and all-in-all perhaps we can paint the WHOLE picture, including, perhaps, the “Unicorns, rainbows and candy-floss version” that some would have us admiring.

The only thing I can possibly add to that is, as I wind up the writing of this editorial, I have been thinking long and hard about what song we could use as the “national anthem” for the VC/OVC in its present incarnation. The best one I could find was…

THIS ONE

 

  1. http://www.veritasvosliberabit.com/images/VVCPublicMeeting11.20.13.pdf

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