The Face of the Modern Day Vampyre

A lot of people seem to have this bizarre notion that modern day vampyres somehow resemble those you find in the movies–translucent skin, (edit: with the exception of the second picture from the left on the second row, because my dear Daley likes to photoshop ALL of her myspace photos…) bizarrely colored eyes, fangs, etc.  But this couldn’t be further from the truth.  Modern day vampyres are young, old, men, women, “goth kids,” “jocks,” business men, mothers; the list goes on.  And, thanks to a few of my wonderful friends, and those so willing to put themselves “out there” as modern day vampyres, I can show you.

Although I did promise to withhold names for privacy purposes, the people you are seeing are real people, ordinary people, and amazing people, who are modern day vampyres.

Thanks everyone who let me use their pictures!

Also, if you’re a modern day vampyre who currently reads my blog–or is now, feel free to shoot me a comment or an e-mail with you’re picture and I’ll be sure to include you in round two.  I’d love to be able to accurately portray the great diversity in the vampyre population, and the more people to do that with, the better!

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The Black Veil – Control

And, now for part four of the black veil series–Control.

Note: For those who don’t know, parts 1-3 can be found under “The Black Veil” in the categories section, if you want to get the info on what the black veil is and why it exists.

Anyway, part four is “Control”:

We cannot and should not deny the darkness within. Yet we should not allow it to control us. If our beast or shadow or darkside is given too much sway, it clouds our judgment, making us a danger even to those we love. Never indulge in pointless violence. Never bring willful harm to those who sustain you. Never feed only for the sake of feeding, and never give over to mindless bloodlust.

We are not monsters: we are capable of rational thought and self-control. Celebrate the darkness and let it empower you, but never let it enslave your will.”

Although this makes us sound like crazy mythical creatures just the way I hate, it makes a very good point–unfortunately, or sometimes not, vampyrism is indeed a “dark” practice, and is seen as such by a good majority of people.  Some let this get the best of them.

Vampyrism can be harmful if used for the wrong reasons: feeding for the sake of feeding, feeding to cause harm, feeding beyond personal need (being gluttonous about it), etc.

And I’ll be honest, the power of being able to give and take energy, just by manipulating it with your mind–is intoxicating.  The temptation is always going to be there, to push the limits, or use it for things it should not be used for.  The quote says it best, “We are not monsters.”  Or shouldn’t be, it’s all up to the individual.

The only thing about this section that I have to disagree with is the emphasis it puts on darkness–as darkness is often, but not always a key component of vampyrism.  But even more commonly, darkness is part of a vampyres being, but not the whole.  Some find vampyrism to be deeply spiritual, and many vampyres also practice energy manipulation for energy healing, energy cleansing, some use their refined psychic abilities for angel and spirit communication, etc–things that are not ruled by darkness, but instead quite the opposite.

So, if you are or realize you are a vampyre, remember that although darkness is empowering and intoxicating, it should not be abused, and it should not be allowed to consume you, only strengthen you.  And always–always try to find that perfect balance between your darkness and your light.

The Black Veil – Saftey

Alright, for those who haven’t been following along, here is part one and two of the black veil series, with some more detailed info on what the black veil and its purpose are.  🙂  Part 3 is “Saftey.”

Use sense when indulging your nature. Do not flaunt what you are in public places. Feed in private and make certain your donors will be discrete about what happens between you. Donors who create rumors and gossip about us are more harm than they’re worth. If you engage in blood-letting, put safety and caution above all other things. Blood-born diseases are a very real thing, and we cannot risk endangering ourselves or others through irresponsibility. Screen donors carefully, making certain they are in good health both mentally and physically.

Never overindulge or get careless. The safety of the entire community rests upon each member’s caution.

I can’t stress enough how important saftey is, if you can’t tell by my other posts.  So many people get so consumed by the glory or the magic, or the image, the illusion of vampyrism that they overlook saftey entirely, and that’s the part where things go spiralling downward.

This section of the black veil makes donors sound rather–er–idiotic, but honestly its a good point.  With the reputation modern day vampyres get, donors who actually participate in the feeding process, especially those who did not have any idea or inkling that vampyrism was practiced in the first place, very often get excited and relay their experiences to people who–well–may not exactly understand, or may take small bits of information and apply what they’ve learned from Hollywood to blow it out of proportion.

This is not to say that NO ONE understands, but it’s important to be careful when opening up to people, especially donors.

In the process of my awakening, I was like a child with a wonderful secret, and likewise, I wanted to tell eeeveryone.  And that I did..and I broke this very important rule.  I fed in public, in not so discrete ways, I told people about me for shock value, or just so that someone else would know.  I won’t give you the entire story, but it did not end well, and gained me a reputation that was entirely too difficult to lose after I began to mature and grow into my nature, realizing the importance of this rule.  In this case it was my fault and not my donor’s, but the same exact principle applies.

Now, the part about blood-letting no longer applies to me, but for those sanguinarian vampyres, or hybrids, this rule is terribly TERRIBLY important.  Diseases, both from human and/or animal blood (if that’s your thing) are very real, and no one is immune.  As tedious and extreme as it sounds, if you are going to feed on blood, make sure that your donor gets tested regularly or that you are getting the blood from a credible source.  Also, be careful with your methods, dirty implements or ESPECIALLY using your teeth (I’ve spoken about this in a previous post) can be extremely easy ways for bacteria to get into your body and harm you.  Always ALWAYS make sure that blood-letting occurs in a safe, sterile, and private place.

The safety of the community does lie in the hands of those within it, this applies to any community, vampyre or otherwise.

The Black Veil – Diversity

And so continues part two of The Black Veil, if you haven’t read the first part, go here for a more thorough explanation on what The Black Veil is and what it means.

Part two is: Diversity

Our paths are many, even though the journey we are on is essentially the same. No single one of us has all the answers to who and what we are. Respect everyone’s personal views and practices. We cannot let petty differences of ideology prevent us from maintaining a unified community; there are enough who would attack us from the outside.

Our diversity is our strength. Let our differences in viewpoint enrich us but never divide us amongst ourselves.

I have no critisisms of this section, if fact, it presents a very good point.  “No single one of us has all the answers to who and what we are.” This is SO important, for many reasons.

1.  I’ve had many many people come to me, and seen even more people come to Day with questions about vampyres, vampyrism, and especially awakening.  The fact of the matter is, we know a lot about vampyrism, but not everything.  Our experiences will differ in many ways from your own.  Not everything we relay to you will apply to you.  Vampyrism is a very personal journey.  (Not even mine and Day’s was completely the same, despite how close we are.)  This doesn’t mean that you are or should be completely alone in learning about it, but never take one person’s opinion as law, take the initiative to form your own opinions, look inside yourself and at what is happening to you.  This is the most important thing you can do to learn about your own vampyrism.

2.  There are thousands of vampyres out there, and even more people that know or think they know all about vampyres.  I’ve been on forum after forum where people present information about vampyres and get beaten down by fellow posters who believe their opinions to be false.  ….Stop it.  There are always going to be people out there who know more than you, less than you, have different opinions than you, or are just plain ignorant.  Accept these for what they are, opinions.  If you think they are wrong, don’t take them to heart, or offer your own opinion if you want.  But there is no point in bashing people.  It only boils down to you putting more negative energy out into the world, and we all know we have quite enough of that going around.

3.  PHYSICAL APPEARANCE MEANS NOTHING.  This isn’t exactly what this section talks about, but it’s related.  No one has to wear all black, listen to a certain kind of music, wear eyeliner, have tattoos, etc etc to be a vampyre.  When someone dressed in pink and wearing pig tails tells you their a vampyre–they very well might be.  Vampyrism is a purely internal thing.  Business men/women can be vampyres, celebrities, even children.  Accept their opinions just as you would any other.

So, pay very close attention to this section.  Diversity and Unity ARE our power as a community, as a pretty big minority we all have to depend on eachother to learn, grow, and find solace in being different.  Thanks again to sanguinarius.org for the actual text from The Black Veil.

The Black Veil – Discretion

The Black Veil, in the vampyre community, is a basic code of ethics for modern day vampyres.  Most of it is common sense, and is by no means a strict set of rules as vampyrism is not some sort of “club,” but they are helpful guidelines for those who practice vampyrism to maintain discretion, saftey, and a healthy relationship with people alike and unalike themselves.

Michelle Belanger, along with others, has re-written the original Black Veil to a more modern, less glamourized, more relavant version to our time, as the original was sometimes criticized as being out of date, and teetering on the verge of sounding outrageous and nearly fictional.

I respect Michelle Belanger greatly, but it is almost seeming that her own version of the Black Veil is becoming outdated with the huge changes that are going on all around us.  Agree with me or not, I present you some of my critisisms to The Black Veil (version 2.0), in will most likely be a many many many part post.

1. Discretion
This lifestyle is private and sacred. Respect it as such. Do not make a sideshow of yourself. We do not have to prove ourselves to anyone. Appearing on public TV to tell the world that you drink blood is useless attention-getting. It gets a negative reaction for the whole community. Our place is in the shadows; our greatest protection from small-minded humanity is the fact that they do not believe we exist. Someday they may be ready for us to reveal ourselves to them, but that time is not now.

Do not hide from your nature, but never show it off to those who won’t understand.

Though I believe that discretion is extremely important to the vampyre community, this version’s use of the terms “our place is in the shadows,” and “small-minded humanity” make my heart sink.  Perhaps a few years ago these terms held more truth, but there’s been a huge leap recently in consciousness, and perhaps the shadows is not where modern day vampyres belong anymore.  Don’t get me wrong, our place is not yet in the lime light, and “vampire lifestylers” who drink blood on television may still attract a negative reaction, but I think that in small doses, the seed of truth about vampyres has been planted, even to the general public. Call me optimistic.

With more and more documentaries, tv series, books, and websites turning their focus on the truth and reality of modern day vampyres, they are slowly becoming more accepted as more people realize that not all vampyres are part of satanic cults run by the mentally ill and angsty teenagers.  Pop culture is always a strong force to contend with, but isn’t that even more of a reason for the vampyres who held on to their discretion to put something out there above the lifestylers who claim to be the only form of “vampire” out there?

I think a big part of lack of acceptance is that the public is only seeing the “vampires” who ARE putting information about themselves out in the open, those who are the people drinking blood on television.

I believe the last phrase in this part is the most accurate, and I will agree with this entirely: “Do not hide from your nature, but never show it off to those who won’t understand.”  Information about modern day vampyres should not be forced on people that do not want to know, nor want to hear about it, nor are ready for it, but for those who are curious and searching for truth, I think there should be something out there for them to see.  Sites like sanguinarius.org, and drinkdeeplyanddream.com offer viable and truthful information on modern day vampyres, available for people to FIND when they are ready to see it.  The vampire documentary on A&E is there for people who WANT to watch it.  And I recently spoke to a modern day vampyre who helps provide answers on Yahoo to those who are seeking information and truth.  I think this is the right path, one tiny step out of the shadows.

In my opinion, this “someday they may be ready for us to reveal ourselves to them,” may be nearer than the Black Veil suggests.  How will we ever know when people are ready to accept us, if we never put ourselves out there, just a little bit at a time?

Our lifestyle is sacred–she’s right.  But if we are to treat it as such, we are paying no respect to ourselves if we are so intent on hiding that we intend that “small minded humanity” should not believe that we exist at all.

Again, I respect Michelle Belanger greatly, along with the others who contribute to the Black Veil (I follow the guidelines myself, as do many others I know), and many things she includes are still very true, such as not making yourself into a “sideshow,” but it seems the secrecy she encourages may not be so entirely necessary anymore…

Am I A Vampyre?

…it’s a question addressed on every single vampyre forum, website, or article.  People who believe they may be “awakening” but do not know for sure and want a sort of “check-list” to define whether they are or are not a vampyre.

I used to think I could help people with this question, but I realize now, that this question is almost as difficult to answer as someone asking you “Am I happy?”  There are always tell-tale signs that you are, but the truth lies within the person in the end, you can only really answer that question on your own.  A person can always appear happy, but not be so on the inside.  The same goes for “am I a vampyre?”

Luckily, Michelle Belanger comes to the rescue again with some guidance on how to decide for yourself.  In an article on the House Kheperu site, she offers a sort of “test” to start things off.  Now, keep in mind, it’s important to be completely honest with yourself–truly look within yourself–and not focus on what you want to be true.  As I can not stress enough, practicing psychic vampyrism as a deliberate and malicious act is not good, fun, fair, ethical, or good for the karma.

That being said, the test is:

1.  Take some time out to really concentrate on the way you interact with the energy around you.  How you react or feel when you are talking with someone, while you are in a crowd, or during intimacies in your relationship.  But, concentrate especially if you are taking some of this energy into yourself.

2.  If the answer to this first test is yes, go for a short period of time, say, a week, while deliberately NOT taking in this energy from other people or energy sources.  If this feels deeply unnatural, or makes you uncomfortable, it is very possible that you may be a psychic vampyre.

Unfortunately, it is by no means as easy as 1, 2 ,3 to decide if you are a vampyre.  Like I said, the answer does not lie in some check-list.  But, this test is a good beginning point in some very intense soul searching.

I recommend doing some research on vampyres and vampyrism to gain a foundation of knowledge on different qualities, common feelings, and aspects of the modern day vampyre to help you.  While doing my own research I realized that some quirks I had that I thought were unique or strange are actually quite common in many psychic vampyres.  It definitely helps in the common feeling that you are alone in what you are and what you experience.

I think the article says it best though:

“Come to understand your vampirism from both inside and out. Make peace with it. Don’t fear or hate it, or else it is something that can easily control you. Balance your own well-being and needs against the well-being and needs of others. Seek answers from every source you deem reliable, and always weigh what you are told by teachers, books, or other authorities against your own personal experience.”

Good Resources for the Soul-Seeking Psychic Vampyre

The Castes – Part 2/3 – The Priest

Okay, okay, I lied.  I didn’t finish “tomorrow” I’m one day late, but I just couldn’t resist the pull of the happy bikers.  So, one day late, here’s part two of the Castes.  The Priest.

The Priest, to us at least, is Day.  She’s always been the most sensitive and aware of her nature, and it has always been such a major part of her that she does not deny or hide it.  In short, she is most in tune with herself, her needs, and her abilities.  And ironically (the irony is found in the following excerpt) the only hybrid psychic/sanguinary vampyre in our group.

Here’s what The Psychic Vampire Codex says:

“Those who comprise our Priest caste have the most heightened sensitivity to energy.  This is both their greatest weakness and their greatest strength.  The Priests long ago severed themselves completely from the umbilical of the Universe.  This allows an unprecedented freedom from the limitations typically experienced during incarnation.  However, as a result of this radical severing, the Priests are no longer sustained by Universal energies and their ability to  process most other energies for personal maintenence is severely inhibited.  For this reason, Priests must directly take life energy to sustain their connection between the subtle and physical, and they must additionally take energy to fuel their subtle powers.

A being who walks more in spirit than in flesh, a Priest has a weak connection to all things physical, including his or her own body.  While this makes a Priest’s skills at energy manipulation formidable, the Priest’s physical well-being is inextricably linked with his or her energetic health.  When energetically out of balance or unable to obtain the needed energy, a Priest’s health will suffer, often in alarming ways.  Irregulatities in hearbeat, nervous disorders, lowered immune responses, depression, and digestive problems are among some of the more common responses to unheallthy energetic states.

Priests who are unawakened are oftem chronically ill, plagued with cardiac, immunological, and nervous disorders.  Priests’ high energy signatures literally burn their bodies out, and unless they learn to compensate by maintaining their spiritual health, they will always be frail and sick.  Even those who are Awakened tend to be gaunt and pale with hands that are almost always cold.

The Priest caste treads the places between: between spirit and matter, between death and life.  Their energies are both masuline and feminine, so that, whether maile or female, they embody qualities of both.

In order to exist in such a delicate balance, Priests must develop a very strong Will.  While that Will allows Priests to harness their formidable power, it can also lead them into arrogance and megalomania.  At one time, the Priest caste was our ruling caste, and while that age is long gone, for the Priests, the memories have yet to fade.  For this reason, many Priests are domineering and obsessed with control.  They have a tendency to be cold and detached, and this detachment can lead to abuses of power.

Despite these weaknesses, Priests are great visionaries among our kind.  Their existence upon the threshold opens up for them sensations and experiences few completely physical beings may access.  The Priests hold within them great metaphysical power, but they must observe moderation or else this power will consume them.”

-Michelle Belanger

Last to cover is The Warrior–I’m not making any “tomorrow” promises this time.  I’ve found many fun things to share with you.  That’s what I get for starting 3 parted things.

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