Obligate Feeding Vs. The Vampire As A Spiritual Creature: A Metaphysical Exploration

The common interpretation of the Psychic Vampire (in the Modern Vampire Subculture) is someone that needs to take in external human-sourced vital energy to maintain their personal health. The justification for this process can range from the Psychic Vampire having a faulty energy system to simply not being able to generate enough personal energy to maintain personal health.

In this model, one might view the Psychic Vampire as being in a state of unhealth or illness. However, within the same model of “eating for health,” it could also be argued that all humans take energy from external resources for a variety of reasons. And judging Psychic Vampires for taking in larger amounts from other humans is arbitrary, judgemental and hypocritical–in light of humans taking energy from other life forms (including humans) and also consuming animal flesh without permission.

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On that note, unawakened Psychic Vampires could arguably not be aware of any psychic, astral or etheric levels of reality…but still auto-feed or intuitively feed (and not possess the language to explain or understand it). At base level, a Psychic Vampire could have a passing understanding of the metaphysics involved, but function at the level of “feed to live” or “feed for health”—meaning that they are perfectly satisfied with not expanding beyond the functional level of psychic vampirism or the need to understand metaphysics beyond a very base level.

On the other hand, we have those who perceive the Modern Vampire as a more evolved psychic and spiritual being. To them, this creature does not “eat for health” to affect the physical, etheric or emotional bodies. To the more spiritual interpretation of the Modern Vampire, it is the NATURE of the Modern Vampire to take in blood and/or energy–but, not necessarily because of the need to maintain physical health.

The Modern Vampire As A Spiritual Creature takes in blood and/or vital energy and energetically transforms it into higher spiritual energy. This spiritual energy is then used to help the Vampire open up to newer levels of personal spiritual understanding or evolution. This is comparable to the psychic process of transforming sacral/sexual energy and cycling it up for the higher spiritual centers to use–transforming base energy into spiritual energy.

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[Here, we are exploring the use of energy by the metaphysically-oriented Vampires. Treatment of blood-only Sangs and Med Sangs is not covered in this discussion, as they are analyzed outside of the realm of metaphysical interpretation. Spiritual Sanguinism, as it is the metaphysical perception of blood-ingestion, is included–but, only when the Modern Vampire uses the metaphysical interpretation of Modern Vampirism…not the materialist interpretation of the blood-only Sanguinism. Also, we are excluding those energy workers who have no need/detriment associated with vampiric feeding, but still practice predatory energy feeding for magickal use.]

When comparing Obligate Feeders against the idea of the Modern Vampire as a Spiritual Being–the main difference is that an Obligate Feeder needs to feed in order to maintain minimal basic physical health; whereas the Modern Vampire as a Spiritual Being does not need to feed to maintain basic physical health, but instead is driven to feed as part of their nature….and transforms that energy into spiritual fuel for personal evolution.

From personal observation, the Modern Vampires who perceive themselves as Obligate Feeders seem to outnumber those of us who perceive that they are born Vampiric Spiritual Beings. It might be the more popular stance for the Obligate Feeders to defend that they are working at an energy deficit or are somehow irrevocably damaged in their energy systems, so that their main focus NEEDS to be on feeding–THEREFORE, also holding the idea that all of that vital energy must go towards maintaining that physical system that will never be healed, healthy or self-reliant.

From a metaphysical standpoint, is this accurate? Are there some energy systems that are and must stay in this “unhealable” state for the entirety of one’s current personal physical incarnation?

Metaphysicians and magicians aim for the perfect state of wholeness, while acknowledging and working through the human limitations that temporarily keep them from realizing that state of perfection. Arguably, we can consider the need to feed on other’s vital energies as comparable to an allergy or need to take a particular supplement, because the physical body doesn’t process it very well. A sort of “special diet” on a non-physical level.

Within the framework of Metaphysical philosophy, an illness or some other peculiarity can SOMETIMES be seen to be caused by the need for a lesson of some sort–perhaps there is something to be learned directly by said conditions or the conditions create some secondary effect that wouldn’t be present, otherwise. [Possible questions to ask yourself as a Modern Vampire are–What are the benefits to me being a Modern Vampire? What am I doing as a Vampire that I would not do if I were not a Vampire? Who else am I benefitting by being a Vampire? Which positive actions am I contributing as a Vampire?]

Seeing the Energy Vampire as an Obligate Feeder only, infers that there is little to no interest in spiritual evolution–or perhaps there is nothing more than being a psychic entity who just ingests (takes). If this is the case, working within this framework, I advise making sure that the particular causation for the particular energy vampirism is not fixable. If it turns out that it is a case of Temporary Vampirism because of an energy body issue [leak, damage, deficiency, etc.], exhaust all healing possibilities through exploring every aspect of energy healing that is available. Engage in every modality that you can practice. Receive every healing treatment that is available, within financial capability.

If, after every healing system has been exhausted, then it might be practical to assume that the vampiric condition exists at a level that is non-negotiable for the soul’s purpose or growth….and needs to keep in place for deeper reasons in the Vampire’s current incarnation.

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On the other hand, we have those of us who perceive vampirism not as the need to take in external energy for physical health, but as the tendency to take in external energy for the purposes of converting it into a sort of psychic and spiritual energy for the higher centers. This more Spiritual version of a Vampire does not suffer from a hunger per se, but instead finds it more comparable to a “drive” or “instinct” to take in energy in order to transform it.

Here is where we have yet another difference of opinion. There are some Obligate Feeders who insist that it is the need to consume that defines them as Modern Vampires. The need to feed (for actual health or sense of wellness) makes their vampirism a non-negotiable part of their being. Because it is not so much a necessity to feed for vitality or health, some Obligate Vampires view the Spiritual Vampire as not having a necessity to engage in energy vampirism, in the first place–and therefore, vampirism is not being a necessary part of the latter group’s system. Because it seems to be more optional, some critics see the Spiritual Vampire as something more of a non-vampiric energy worker, able to drop the practice of energy work because it is not a driving necessity for health.

In other words, it might be seen as more of a learned and optional practice that is applied consciously, not an instinctive/inherent part of one’s self–in the case of the Spiritual Vampire.

Arguably, one of the biggest clues that one is an Obligate Energy Vampire is that one auto-feeds. Usually, the evidence for this is that others visibly react to the Energy Vampire’s auto-feed or will remark on it, if they are energetically aware enough to sense it.

In the case of one being the more “spiritual” version of the Vampire, it is not that one is experiencing a physical or energy deficit that prompts one to feed. It is more of a matter that after feeding [ambient, touch, eros or blood], one instinctively transforms that energy and immediately finds their consciousness propelling into higher intuitive and psychic realms of consciousness. The more spiritual version of the Vampire tends to shift their consciousness into higher realms, using the fuel of other’s energy to propel them. We can think of this process as something comparable to raising energy from non-human sources to fuel a spell or some other act of magick…taking energy from an external source to manifest a result or shift circumstances, in some way.

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Regardless of which appeared first in history or which was first labeled a “Vampire,” we have two types of psychic/energetic creatures which appear in the GVC.  One which feeds on other human-based sources to supplement one’s physical/etheric well-being.  [In a way, this is comparable to the physical ingestion of animals or plant matter–eating for health.]  The other psychic creature feeds on human-based energy sources to fuel one’s spiritual propulsion….in a way which is comparable to magicians pulling on external energy sources to fuel magick or manifestation.

My immediate response to determining whether one belongs to one group, the other or neither is basically the same that I have in determining other qualities or classifications in the metaphysical realm.  I question whether some concept can possibly apply to me by exploring its potential applications retroactively.  [Of course keeping in mind that false memory and the presumptive search factor of the brain could be fabricating evidence, based on how I pose any questions in meditation.]

From there, I explore the possibilities that the categorization in mind might not be the best explanation after all–and explore alternative explanations, as well as entertaining the possibility that I could be completely mistaken, misidentifying or trying to “stack the evidence” to make myself “fit into the category.”

In the context of my personal spiritual evolution, I take particular categories of such spiritual classifications and work with them to see if they add value to my life as a spiritual being.  Being an energy vampire can be seen as classifying one’s energy system in a particular way, so that we can then work with it in a more conscious manner. This can be compared to classifying one’s self as a clairvoyant, clairsentient, psychic generator or such.  Any concept which helps one focus on energetic tendencies and needs of a particular energetic or psychic type, in order to keep healthy and balanced.

That aside, is it possible to be both “types” of psychic/energetic creatures? Both “types” of Vampires?  Is it possible to be one, then be the other?  Arguably, it would be possible to grow out of being an Obligate Feeder, if one’s energy vampirism is temporary.  If one’s causation for energy vampirism is healed or alleviated, then obligatory feeding can cease.  Within the principles of metaphysical healing, this is not unheard of.  Rather than a more straightforward repair of energetic structure [damaged chakra, meridian or energy body], it could be a karmic reason for energy vampirism that is finally relieved.

Just as with any and all illnesses and conditions viewed through the metaphysical lens, there is probably not a singular cause for energy vampirism which accounts for all Energy Vampires.  I am merely bringing up the possibility that this might be the case in some instances.  On the note of raising one’s consciousness, it is a working concept in metaphysics that the more that one works with higher Divine energies, healing can occur as a side-effect of dwelling in and channeling the more positive vibrations.

In the case of Energy Vampirism being a temporary vampirism, it is possible because of the higher spiritual work of the Vampire that enough of the right kinds of energy come in and heal any temporary vampirism.  In this scenario, the activities of the more Spiritual Vampirism heals obligatory temporary vampirism.  Just some food for thought.

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Witches, Vampires, Analogies, Degrees, Overlap and Levels…Oh, My!

Because I am a magician, metaphysician and an energy worker–I tend to use those models when I consider aspects within vampirism and how they all come together in the Vampire Subculture. I often find it helpful to explore the concepts and analogies found within the Magicians Communities and apply them to the Vampire Subculture–

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Keeping in mind that spirituality is not the same as magick, I’ve found that I’ve strayed away from a lot of witchcraft and pagan groups that tend to focus on rituals and spellworking [practical magick] as opposed to activities that affect the personal evolution of consciousness and perception.  Low Magick vs. High Magick.

When I was new to the Pagan Community, I had very strong ideas about what “real” or authentic Witches were. I was biased towards particular traditions, beliefs and practices being true Witchcraft.  I had an emotional investment in the “other” traditions and practitioners NOT being authentic Witches, because I was the one REALLY practicing real Witchcraft.

As time went along, I realized that it didn’t matter how “authentic” any tradition was or how accurately some tradition was reconstructed from the “original” version.  It was more a matter of my personal journey.  For myself, my criteria for the usefulness of techniques and practices was based on the value of bringing me more peace, more silence, and the sense of spiritual connection.  And in the calm, if I can bring more love and joy into my awareness, then the practice has value to me.  In the silence, if I can relax into that feeling of expansion or connectedness/oneness, then the practice is something that I am going to keep and repeat.  I might explore a particular tradition only for the purposes of cultivating its practical parts for my own private routines.

As I’ve evolved my personal practices, I’ve left behind some techniques that no longer fulfilled my needs.  I wouldn’t say that I’ve “outgrown” them so much, because I wouldn’t want to imply that they are basic or inferior to where I am now.  As a child, I needed clothes in children’s sizes and my dietary needs (and tastes) were very different from what they are now.  I’m not better because my clothes are bigger or because my menu has changed.  I just need a different “fit.”

I’ve noticed that many magickal practitioners forget about grounding, centering and cleansing–almost as if they are basic-level techniques meant to be replaced or left behind, at some point.  Some seem to think that when you no longer use “basic” techniques, it means that you are obviously at an advanced level.

When I speak to someone within the Pagan, Witchcraft or Magickal Communities, I like to gauge where they are coming from.  Rather than show off what I know (or think I know), I think it is more useful to realize what it is that they can RELATE TO on an intellectual level.  While I might think a single-focused Eastern meditation might be a great solution for me, if I were in a similar situation to whatever it we happen to be discussing–someone who is just starting to perform grounding and working with the elements might not relate to a more Eastern-style of focusing on the emanations of Divine Energy.  Also, if someone has been practicing spirit evocation from Bardon’s work or summoning Goetic Spirits, my suggestion of astral projection to the Faery Queen’s realm might not ring as effective as a working method for them.

Simply put–the effectiveness of a technique or information relates to the degree to which we can relate to or identify with that information on a personal level.  Universal truth, historical accuracy or group agreement means very little to nothing, if the observer cannot relate to the information in a personal way.

Efficacy of any new techniques or information might not have as much to do with the source of the information as much as how well it fits into the Magician’s framework of reference.  In the Spirit Model of magick, there is the working assumption that all of the entities that we work with have an existence that is independent and predates the life of the summoner. This is one of the models of magick that makes sense to me.

However, there is also the Psychological Model of Magick. The basic idea echoes the concept that the world of experience (the world of the senses) is a reflection of the internally held thoughts, feelings and convictions of the observer.  The magician uses the ideas of gods, spirits and entities in symbolic ways…while the mage goes through the motions of ritual action, it is meant to move the internal psychological aspects that are symbolized by the mythology and the archetypes found within sorcery.

[Sharing my personal filter is important, so that others can understand where I am coming from and what my choices in perception are based in.  Personally, I am not so convinced that practices in metaphysical, magickal or spiritual activities is based on a continuum.  From my perspective, the human personality/experience is based on necessary limitation–filtering out awareness and identification with omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence in order to be able to identify with human likes, wants, preference and seeming obstacles.  The pathway to enlightenment is not formulaic…an exact pathway with the same guidelines, guideposts or process for everyone.  While systems of magick might have traditions that are standard, enlightenment is something almost accidental…it happens when one creates the conditions most conducive for the event, but not on anything resembling a set schedule.]

Although it is popular to believe that we are on a continuum throughout our series of lifetimes–that each life holds learning that is accumulative over the reincarnation of the soul, a Zen moment would release the individual consciousness from the limitations of the human personality.  There might not be “stages” in the necessary sense, like school grades that we have to pass through.  Awareness of the intellectual/philosophical “place” where an individual is at might be necessary to see what they can relate to at any given moment.

Even though I enjoy systems of magick and metaphysics, I am very aware that the conditions for enlightenment (spirituality) could as easily be found in a ritual meditation or in contemplating the beauty of my morning coffee.  So, following that mindset, I interact with others depending on what I perceive their framework to be, at that moment.  Again, I wouldn’t say that I see people on a continuum.  An individual could be practicing a particular religion their entire life, but still not clearly identify with Divine Love, even at the end of their life.  Whereas someone might be more eclectic and because they have spent more time contemplating Divine Love through various images from many different cultures, they might end their life having touched much higher spiritual planes.

I enjoy earth magick.  I love the physical tools of candles, stones crystals, ritual oils and all the arts and crafts of modern magick.  However, while I enjoy spellcrafting and everyday, practical magick…I am aware that it is not the same as spirituality, including evolution of spiritual awareness.

Not everyone online or in real life has an interest in personal and spiritual evolution.  Some of us only have an interest in occasional spellcrafting for practical purposes, to move objects and events in our everyday lives.  I will not criticize or disparage that.  I have my moments when I do the same.  So, when I am offering magickal/metaphysical information, I will gauge which framework the individual is currently working with and hopefully offer them the most liberating technique, tool or piece of information that I can give them…depending on how I intuitively discern their most immediate need.

Translating all of this to the Vampire Subculture–we have so many perceptions of what vampirism is…but, because I identify with metaphysics as the principle part of my framework, I will be addressing Energy Vampirism, more specifically.  (Respectfully, leaving the subject of sanguinism to others, at this point.)

Among the many variations, we have obligate vampirism on the level of nourishment-only.  We have some feeders who are primarily concerned with feeding for purposes of health, only.  There is very little concern for any other application beyond the basic health level.  That, or the vampire’s more spiritual metaphysical interests are independent of one’s energy vampirism.

There are some energy feeders who will go through their entire lives, feeding and being aware of their self-identification as a vampire as an occasional mental reference or superficial-level reference in group settings.

To give a context to my personal identification as a Vampire–I have my ideas about what is historically accurate and what I consider real vampirism. However, I am also aware of what the many other definitions of vampirism and Real Living Vampires are, as they are considered by the many members of the GVC.  Personally, I don’t care where the original “vampire” came from–whether it was a creature of mythos that energy feeders and/or blood feeders LATER became associated with…OR if it was the exaggerated/poetic retellings of actual feeders that became the mythology.  From my perspective, we are gathered under the umbrella of “Vampire” right here, right now as the loose subculture that we currently experience.  Whether or not there was a “true Vampire” at some point in history, I am looking at practical energy feeders and spiritually-oriented energy feeders as two distinct psychic creatures, identified by their natural tendencies.  As naturally occurring as clairvoyants or other types of magickally-tended creatures.

Some Vampires are very metaphysically-oriented and spiritually-propelled.  They are intuitively geared to keep expanding and climbing in terms of consciousness. Their spirituality is tied into their concepts of vampirism.

However, there are also some feeders who are geared to remain in the more practical, nourishment-only-focused aspects of vampirism.  For whatever reasons, their emotional and mental bodies are set up with so many justifications to stay focused on nourishment-only vampirism because it makes sense for their personality in this particular lifetime.  Not everyone is meant to become enlightened at the same time as everyone else in the same particular lifetime.  Just as with other lifetimes, the individual has chosen (or is “meant” to, according the individual soul’s purpose) to focus on a particular limitation or focus in terms of life’s passion or obstacles.  There might be value for some of us staying nourish-only in our lifetimes.

There might be secondary value or reasoning to NOT being spiritually-oriented that will be personally revealed at a later time.

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When talking to other Witches and Metaphysicians, I share whichever series of meditations I’m working with…which one-pointed meditations I enjoy.  However, I know when to keep the references limited to rocks and herbs and candles…because that’s all that some audiences can understand and relate to.  Trying to “educate” too far beyond the student’s reach creates a separation between the would-be teacher and the intended audience.  Reminding the student of techniques already within their repertoire, we can still also offer newer information…but only when that information is relatively close enough to the student’s framework to seem like it could possibly make sense.

While I may go on to explore other definitions of vampirism to see if they are a better fit and DESCRIBE my experience as a better working definition–I will more than likely still acknowledge and offer information to the feed-only obligate faction of vampirism.

My Vampirism and Spirituality

I was going to write about the drama going on in the GVC, again–but, after reading the intro to Julia DarkRose’s upcoming book and a very thought-provoking post by Seth Ananda….I felt inspired to focus on more spiritual topics.

The concept of The Vampire is not necessarily linked with that of any form of spirituality.  There are those popular, media and mythology associations which depict the vampire simply as a feeder–of blood and/or energy. If there are any paranormal qualities expressed by the vampire,  they are inherent and inborn, as soon as the vampire is turned. In urban legend and stories, the Vampire is a metaphysical creature and has no need to exercise, develop or gain its abilities.

In The GVC, some of us might hold the above perception to a more reasonable degree. Whether or not the vampire is a naturally metaphysical being, we hold an entire spectrum of ideas about spirituality as it might relate to modern vampirism.

I don’t pretend that I am any sort of expert. I am not any spiritual master, nor ancient vampire who holds the wisdom of the ages. Just like many other people,  I talk about my personal experience, which I observe and analyze, using my perception and preconceptions.

When I think of spirituality, I refer to the working definitions I’ve come to after years of my personal, evolving understanding of  my metaphysical studies.

We sometimes define spirituality as an intuitive or instinctive process of recognizing spiritual activity through our inner knowing. While I do not personally discount the possibility of this aspect–I can’t validate it in an objective way, so I’ll leave discussion of that to a minimum, while I discuss other angles.

Personally, I can think of my earliest conscious concepts of spirituality as a purely mental process–a thoughtform that we individually construct–or as an intellectual translation of the intuitive sense of spiritual realities.  In my understanding, we can correspond either one easily to the other.

My earliest conscious conception of spirituality was tied in to my earliest teachings of religion. I was raised Catholic, with stories of saints, angels, virgin births and beings come back from the dead. The stories of magick included miracles, God/Jesus/angels/saints personally fulfilling human requests, intercession, spontaneous or long-term healing….all that was supposedly still possible in modern times if I followed orders, behaved correctly and kept petitioning (asking, begging, negotiating). I might not get what I asked for, but this was the proper and ONLY procedure–the ONLY route to take.

Spirituality, magick, physical manifestation and emotional satisfaction were all tied into each other. Physical wealth and worldly happiness were dependent on God granting or withholding them. “Spirituality” involved following rules that were impossible to completely follow, with possible intermittent rewards and, most likely, a lot of punishment for not being able to follow all the rules perfectly, the first time.

Here’s where my plot eventually got twisted as a child–I found some of my father’s books that he might have forgotten about. There was some Carlos Castaneda and a few books on East Indian spirituality. I don’t remember the exact timeline, but it was around the same time that I also discovered some of my godfather’s new age books.

My ideas on God and the construction of the universe began to change.  As the years went by, and I was exposed to various ideas, my viewpoint opened up to a lot of other possibilities.  I’ve all but thrown out the conviction that my childhood model of religion (Catholicism) was the absolute authority.  My concept of Spirituality has changed and become more refined.

When I think of how spirituality works, I  start my conception from the Top-down.

My concept of absolute reality is that the spiritual reality of it is that I am completely one with the Substance of Spirit. There is actually no distinction between my “self” and the ultimate being known as The Creator. At the highest level, there never was any actual separation.

How I understand individualization (or manifestation in human form) is that we purposely chose to believe in our personal limitations, at a deep mental and emotional level–that is, we consciously chose to ignore aspects of our true identity in order to manifest as human in the physical world.  Instead of conscious being as Unlimited Love (without object or subject), we chose to believe that we could only love other specific beings when specific criteria are met for specific “types” of “love,” depending on personal relationship to those specific objects of our “love.”  Love from the Divine perspective is very, very different from what we call “love” in human relationships.

Within the model of multiple layers/levels of reality, where there are energy bodies which are our vehicles for expression on the varying vibratory levels (dimensions or planes)–everything below the level of Oneness is necessarily based on the illusion of not being conscious of our being Oneness.  Therefore, we can define “spirituality” as simply the conscious awareness of that Oneness.

Since everything below that level of Oneness (Spirituality) is based on the illusion of not believing in that Oneness, we are dealing with the illusions of fragmentation, separation and duality.  Exploring black and white, good and evil, negative and positive for the purposes of reuniting (balancing) them is reaffirming that there IS fragmentation and separation, which are not qualities of Oneness to begin with–and are simply putting more power into the conviction of the reality of the illusion.

No judgement at all on the goodness or badness of anything, here.  I simply want to make the distinction between Magick and Spirituality.  Magick is movement of the perceptions and convictions of independent reality of everything below the level of Oneness.  Spirituality is simply the awareness of that Oneness.  Magick can calm the emotional waters, which distract us from realization of Oneness.  Magick can calm the reactions and conditions which distract us from Oneness, because we have emotional and mental investments in being obsessed or concerned with the physical world and personal, interior worlds.

Magick can be a vehicle towards spirituality, IF used to change perception about absolute self-identity as Spirit.  Magick can be a deterrent to spirituality, if used in any other way to reinforce obsession with physical, mental or emotional realities in ways which do not make spiritual awakening easier.

Where am I at in terms of Vampirism and how it relates to Spirituality?  If we think of Energy Vampirism in basic terms of feeding and energy nourishment, once I feel satisfied and emotionally calm after feeding, I can refocus on Spirit and its emanations, such as Peace and Love.  I am not as distracted by hunger on energetic or emotional levels.  This is how it relates to those who define Vampirism on the basic level.

There are those of us who define being Vampires in more spiritual terms, beyond just feeding.  Some of us feel that what SOME of us are can be defined as a more spiritually-oriented creature that is distinctly different in our makeup and drive than the feeding-only creature that also takes the label of “vampire.”  In this case, it might not be only (or at all) the same process/need that the sustenance-only vampiric creature identifies with.  One interpretation for the Vampire-AS-SPIRITUAL-CREATURE is that they take in the energy/blood to use as fuel for spiritual evolution.  This reminds me of other spiritual traditions where personal sexual energy is taken from the lower chakras and cycled up to the higher chakras, especially the crown, for spiritual awakening.

[As I’ve brought up before, my stance is that the GVC includes both types of feed-only and spiritually-oriented psychic identities who both gravitate to the Subculture.  Not that there is one “true” type of Vampire, exactly….but, that we have varying types of energetic humans who come to the GVC, under the umbrella term of Modern Vampires.]

In the case of the Vampire who is a sort of spiritually-oriented being, I would have to say that I resonate somewhat with that concept.  Just because an energy worker can work with healing energy that corresponds to the etheric body, which affects the physical body–there is no guarantee that they are experiencing Oneness.  Even the higher Love feelings that one experiences from doing a healing might be dependent on the idea that one is being helpful in a personal way.  While this positive concept can eventually LEAD TO a spiritual experience of Oneness, helping another person heal might be tinted with the ideas that the healer was an important factor to the healing (personal ego involved); there might be some sort of compensation for the effort (expecting the healed individual or the universe to give something back, based on personal action); or that somehow energy is limited or lacking….and therefore not omnipresent and in abundance.

Working with non-physical dimension energies is Magick, up until we come to the Spirituality-level awareness of Oneness.  When used with focus, Vampirism can lead to spirituality,  but is not necessarily spiritual in itself.   Lower level energies are based on limitation, not Oneness.

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Tradition–Keeping It Old School or The Evolution of Our Rules and Practices?

What are our traditions in the Vampire Subculture? What exactly are these Old Ways and Teachings?

We use these terms much the same way that we use them in the Pagan and Magickal Communities. They refer to practices that we repeat within a particular context…or beliefs that we profess, as part of a particular group.

Because common usage sometimes veers off from formal definition–new “traditions” can be declared on the spot, with the intention or promise to repeat the practice again, in the future.

When traditions are upheld in the Vampire Subculture, there is no guarantee that the practices and beliefs are ancient ones or even very old.

I’ve heard references to “tradition” and “old ways” in ways that infer that the beliefs and practices are old, they are automatically beyond question and therefore indisputable. It’s a trick of language to label something as “old” to infer that it is long-standing because it must have intrinsic and time-proven value.

On one hand, if something is claimed as part of a long-standing tradition, it is fair for someone to be curious about the documentation or research which traces this practice or belief, over time.  There is nothing wrong with practices and beliefs being associated with a modern mythos or legend, as a storytelling technique–but, claiming an imaginary history to validate the value of a tradition is a bit misleading.

On the other hand, more modern traditions have no need of a long history if they have value in and of themselves.  Practices can have practical value–they can be a way of performing a metaphysical or physical activity that is useful.  They might not be traceable far back into history, but they might be the recommended practice within that group, because they work.

As far as practices which are not necessarily the most practical or effective, they might have more value on a symbolic level. Perhaps these practices are repeated because the founding or early members of the group practiced in such a manner. Repeating the same activity is a way of honoring the lineage and keeping connected to the group mind of the House.

As far as beliefs within a tradition go, they might sometimes be presented as fact or historical account that is passed down to later generations. While this might be the case at times–in other cases, there might only be validation for the belief in question because there is the false presentation of the belief as fact. We can think of this as a purely mental process–meaning that we are observing only the information that confirms our expectations–or as a metaphysical process–meaning that we are manifesting the thoughtforms of the beliefs in these traditions.

There is nothing wrong with having a standard set of practices and beliefs in one’s particular group, house or lineage. However, we should be aware and careful where language can be misleading. In paganism, we refer to “Traditions” when we refer to particular bodies [sets] of information–practices, mythos, deities, symbols and beliefs.  For the most part, pagans understand that it is a package of information that the individual adopts because it makes sense to them in their philosophical navigation through this world.  Traditions in paganism are optional and consciously chosen.

In contrast, many Modern Vampires often see themselves as born into vampirism–some of us see us as something more equivalent to a “sub-race” within humanity.  Vampirism is not chosen, not optional.  The “traditions” within the world of Vampirism could be mistakenly seen as being more obligatory, belonging to our heritage.  It is not like choosing between religions, where one has the option of changing between churches, as their understanding changes and grows.  Some people might feel that this is more like discovering that you are part of an “ethnicity”–you already belong and this is what your people have been doing for centuries. Many newbies find it believable that there might be long-standing lineages, with hidden wisdom–the most efficient practices and “beliefs” (which are implied to be “facts) are passed down in the form of traditions.

When pledging into groups, respect the ways of their organization. Discretely gauge which parts of their particular Tradition are negotiable, if you want the option of modifying the information. If non-negotiable aspects don’t mesh with your perception or experience, gracefully excuse yourself from the group and find another which nourishes your growth.

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Non-Vampiric Feeding vs. Vampiric Feeding

There was a time when I energy-fed–before I thought of myself as an Energy Vampire.  It was more that I didn’t think of it as “feeding” in the way that I think of vampiric energy feeding, now.  I did use the word “nourishment,” thinking in terms of “spiritual nourishment”–the energies that each of us need, as spiritual/energetic beings with spiritual/energetic bodies.

Before I self-identified as a Vampire and used the reference points that I use now, I thought of myself as a mage and an energy worker.  I moved energy and thought of this process as more of “channeling.”  One of the first concepts I was introduced to in Feri Witchcraft was that of the “The Tree” visualization–thinking of ourselves as rooted in the Earth, with our branches reaching into the skies and space.  Energetically connected to the energy system of the Earth and the Planetary bodies.  As a Witch, we were taught that we were spiritually nourished by taking in energies from the Earth and the Sky.  Within the context of paganism, we were also taught that our personal energy systems needed the feminine, Goddess, Earth energies from below and the masculine, God, solar, Sky energies from above.  With both, we were complete.

While I didn’t use the word “feeding” extensively at the time, I meditated on both types of natural energy filling my personal system and nourishing my chakras, energy bodies and any other metaphor/image that I thought of as my “self.”  At the time, my mental concept was not that I was anything special or unique because I practiced in this way.  My perception was that all beings benefited from performing this practice consciously, because it represented full communion with all spiritual energies.  Anything with a spirit (i.e., humans) became complete with this conscious practice.

Eventually, whether it was an intuitive understanding or a logical conclusion based on an analysis of these metaphysical concepts [or even, simply a psychological technique, working as some kind of emotional placebo], I found value in taking in other classes of energies.  Pretty much any other type of energy that I could conceptualize.

As a Witch, I pretty much figured out that every magickal system that we used represented the wholeness of reality by breaking it down into smaller symbolic parts that we could mentally relate to.  The signs of the Zodiac, Planetary Magick, Elemental Magick, Pantheons…with each exploration of every magickal construct, my main practice was channeling those energies into and through my self.  Earth, Water, Fire, Air.  Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars.  Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer.  Ra, Isis, Osiris, Horus, Sekhmet, Bast.  For whatever other technique I practiced or information I studied, I constantly pulled energy into myself.  The benefits were observable.  While, I wasn’t “healed” in the way that I conceptualized (and expected) to be, I did notice differences and improvements.  I felt emotionally calmer.  My physical body felt better.  I was healthier on those two levels.

I felt a satisfaction that I didn’t have before.  To me, these were spiritual and magickal practices that ANY spiritually-oriented person could choose to do.  These were beneficial, but not obligatory.  To my understanding, I was drawn to these practices, these states because it was natural to my being…but, I was still human.  There was nothing about my BEING that made me different from any other human, magician or non-magician.  These trends to want to explore spirituality, energy work and magick were things that I saw as part of my personality or consciousness–but, they did not set me apart as a different TYPE of human being.

My magickal practices didn’t fix everything in my life, but they certainly made them MUCH better.  By the time I stumbled into the Vampire Community, I was already pretty content with my personal system.  And because it was such a personal and living system, I adjusted and adopted the concepts that I discovered within energy vampirism.  The explanations that I discovered in the Vampire Community filled in the holes that my previous system had.  Looking back, I realized that I had auto-fed on other humans quite a bit of the time.  People also told me that I pulled on their negative energy in ways that I know I didn’t do consciously–again, automatically.  Friends and acquaintances told me that they felt better around me, because I would relieve them of their heavy, negative energies, simply by being in their presence.

Even though I had a comfortable background in the Pagan and Magickal Communities…or maybe BECAUSE I knew the value of considering myself a student in new territory…I was open to listening to the input from the various members of the Vampire Community.  They were obviously aware of their vampirism much longer than I had been.  Even though no one had expressly communicated this to me–from observing the focus of many Energy Feeders, I eventually considered “vampiric feeding” as the taking in of energy from other human energy systems.  I had a long history of taking in energy from non-human sources…and because I didn’t call it “feeding,” I never thought of that as vampiric.

Taking in energy from human sources was “vampiric.”  This was part of the reason that I quietly disbelieved that elemental feeders were really vampires, if their energetic diet was exclusive to that non-human energy.  Feeding on Nature’s energies was something that I had done for years–it was part of a magician’s routine.  Many spiritual people did it and everyone could benefit from it.

At some vague point, within some grey area, I started to think of myself as more of a Psychic Vampire/Energy Vampire/Vampire rather than as a Witch.  Not that I gave up on my old practices completely, but working with non-human energies happened less frequently.  I had created a distinction between Magicians/Witches and Vampires in my mind.  Even though no one else told me that I had to give up my old energy work, I had also accidentally created an association between solar/stellar energies and the powers of Nature.  Lunar and Nocturnal energies were in a separate category.  Vampires seemed to have a preference for nighttime imagery.

While I didn’t think in terms of Light/Good and Dark/Bad, I did use particular terms and images in my pre-Vampire Community days.  I thought of energy as Light…Diane Stein had introduced me to the concept of Black Light, so even working with Darkness wasn’t a problem in the modality I had been using.  While I did work with Lunar and Nocturnal energies/images, I thought of Light as being a strong part of this framework.

I thought of the principles of Energy Vampirism as rounding out my practices, so I adopted them.  However, I perceived that there is much more of a Nocturnal focus in many of the members…so, I eventually lost focus on the entirety of my old energy work, as I was used to practicing it.  It seems that many of the Energy Feeders focus on Lunar energies and Dark energies, if any energy work is done at all, besides feeding on human-sourced prana.  I hadn’t realized that I had narrowed in my focus in the same way in my personal practice.  Looking back, I realized that it was an eventual progression.

I hadn’t thought of my early energy work as Feeding, because that is not a term that we worked with.  We did use concepts like “spiritual nourishment,” though.  “Feeding” sounds like something predatory, while “nourishment” reminds me of something healthy and  nurturing.  Even though we often work with willing donation and ambient energy, “feeding” brings to mind something other than “eating”….it’s a more aggressive word choice.  When I thought of being “nourished” by the Earth’s energy, there was definitely something softer, caring, more loving about the concept.

I was taking in energy either way, but there was distinctions in my frame of reference.  I’ve recently found MORE wonderful, well-rounded, spiritually-oriented Vampires who embrace the value of working with non-human sources of energy, as well as acknowledging that it is part of our nature to feed on human-source prana.  Is it natural for some of us–Vampiric Energy Feeders–to focus only on Nocturnal energies…or is it another part of The Vampire Mystique to only focus on the Night?  Is it fashionable to keep only to the dark or do some of us keep to the shadows because we’ve associated the Light and Sunlight to the (unenlightened) society that we wish to separate ourselves from?

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Models of Reality, Framework of Reference…Logic and Emotion In the Vampire Community

I classify myself as an Energy Vampire, Psychic Vampire, Spiritual Vampire or Eros Vampire, depending on who I’m talking to.  Also, because I live within a Spanish-speaking subculture, I have also referred to myself as a “Vampiro”–still depending on context.

Which classification I use depends on the aspect that I am emphasizing, which itself depends on my intention for discussing the topic.  It is not that I am trying to reinforce an identity.  It is more that I am discussing or explaining particular metaphysical topics.  I don’t wave the Vampire flag, but I do bring it up when it is relevant to a conversation on metaphysical themes.  But, this is just my experience.

When I came into the GVC, there was already existing conflict between members of the community.  Members constantly complaining about the definition of a real Vampire, who has the right to classify themselves as Vampires, why certain members shouldn’t be considered Vampires….and on and on and on.  This is the only version of the GVC that I know.  People argue.

But, within the argument, there are gems of wisdom in the various opinions.  I don’t agree with what everyone says.  There are some topics, angles and schools of thought that I adore.  Likewise, there are other topics, angles and schools of thought that I couldn’t care less about….mostly because they don’t seem to contribute anything to the real-day, real-time personal growth of Modern Vampires.

As far as my personal experience with Psychic Vampirism, here’s my story in a nutshell–I didn’t grow up with the need to identify with the image of the Fictional Vampire…not any more than I daydreamed about being a powerful Witch, a shapeshifter, an alien-human hybrid, a mutant or a misplaced changeling/Fairy/fey.  But, to my understanding, I was born human–I identified as being human.  I am human.  I was aware that I had had psychic and paranormal experiences.  Standard religion didn’t make sense to me, so magick and metaphysics filled in the spaces that straight materialist thinking couldn’t explain for me.

My exploration of energy-based healing systems led me to focus on understanding my world in terms of chakras and energy bodies.  While there was some improvement in my general health, some issues seemed a bit beyond immediate healing.  It was from my base in metaphysics that the concepts of Psychic Vampirism made sense to me–living from the perspective of being a psychic vampire made room for some improvements in my life.

I am primarily part of the GVC because I want to exchange relevant information on vampirism.

I understand the need for people to feel that they are part of a community.  There are a variety of reasons to want to feel that they are included as part of a larger group.  There is validation and the sense of safety that most people cannot feel on their own.  Within the Vampire Community, we each have our own agendas–some of which are consciously held–someone can ask us what we want to accomplish in the GVC and we can answer directly.  On the other hand, we have quite a few members of the Community who simply do not have enough self-awareness to be able to answer that honestly and directly.  They don’t necessarily know what they want–they are just acting instinctively to get their needs met.

This is the nature of the Beast.  (The Beast being humanity, with its very human personality.)  Maybe, I’ve become more cynical about the general state of consciousness that I see most people express.  Maybe I see so many examples of lack of self-awareness because of some bias or prejudice on my part.  Or, it could be, that as I strive to become more self-aware, I am simply noticing the particular state that has always existed for the general populace.

Not everyone strives to become self-aware.  Not everyone strives to become spiritually aware.  Not everyone wants to consciously evolve.

I have become increasingly disillusioned with the ideal of a peaceful, harmonious community.  Not only in the GVC….just anywhere that humans are involved.  Vampires are only another kind of human.  There are amazing individuals within the community–fantastic mentors, leaders and role models.  Likewise, some younger members, newer members….energy feeders, blood feeders, swans, otherkin and allies are also amazing and inspiring.

In the few years that I’ve been a part of the GVC, I’ve come to realize that even though some of these people have some things in common with me, not everyone will get along….because Vampires are still people and people do not like to get along.  Defense of one’s personal beliefs are way more important to some people than believing what it most logical, more correct, most humanitarian or most spiritual.

From the metaphysicians point of view, unless someone is on a conscious pathway of working to spiritually awaken….meaning to completely RE-self-identify  with the qualities and essences of Spirit….they are still subject to the limitations of their humanhood.  And when you are subject to the limitations of the human personality, all communication is filtered through those limitations of the human personality.  There are power struggles, expressed as need for disagreement and the need to be non-cooperative.

I’ve watched many disagreements disguised as the need to “educate” and push a personal or group agenda.  These arguments often reduce down to attacks on intellect or even more personal details.  If the desire is to change someone’s mind toward your ways of thinking, then persuasion and constructive explanation is the LOGICAL way to go.  However, this will only work for those people who are non-emotional in those particular areas of discussion.  As soon as anyone has an emotional investment in an idea–or the root belief which upholds that investment in  that particular idea–they are not completely logic-based and the “discussion” is only an excuse to argue.

To really change someone’s mind, we need to take into account that each person has reasons for their beliefs.  Not everyone is going to embrace an idea because it is logical or scientific.  Some beliefs are held because there is a fear that needs to be supported.  Some beliefs are held because they were accepted at some point as truth.  The complexities of the human psyche do not necessarily allow for the quick change of beliefs.  Emotional investment keeps beliefs in place, regardless of how logical or how much scientific/material evidence there is to support a change in that belief.

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