Vampires Stories Started Thousands of Years Ago in Myths Today They Are Very Real and Among Us ? Abstract Vampires have been a part of human culture for thousands of years. There have been stories of vampire like creatures in Mesopotamia, Greece, China, and Europe. These stories have pned the globe and time. The vampire has evolved overtime based on the current trends and beliefs and culture of the time. Today when the word vampire is said many visualize Dracula from the stories by Bram Stoker or handsome alluring creatures that are ready to drain you of your blood.
For most vampires only live in stories, the truth is that vampires are very real. There is a subculture of real vampires emerging out of the darkness all over the world they are very real and among us. Vampires Stories Started Thousands of Years Ago in Myths Today They Are Very Real and Among Us When the word vampire is said it evokes Hollywood images of handsome men and beautiful women, seductive creatures with fangs that lure in their prey with their hypnotic stare along with their good looks, wit and charm.
Once the prey is seduced the vampire goes straight for the throat, biting down and draining their blood and ultimately their life. More recently the images may be of the sexy Vampire who is trying to pass as human in some high school setting that is amazingly fast, and strong, yet trying to be sensitive. Some sparkle in the sun and others must avoid it altogether, while still others wear some enchanted ring or jewelry in order to walk in sunlight.
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Oh yes, and let’s not forget their ability to go on living forever because one of the most incredible qualities is a vampire’s immortality, unless they have a wood or silver stake driven through their heart, or end up decapitated and burned, which would swiftly end there immortal reign. Whichever version of vampire you envision will depend on the most recent book, movie, or television series you are intrigued by. These images are the glorified Hollywood images that are spoon fed to us daily, but these are not the true definitions or characteristics of a real vampire.
As much as most people believe that the image of the vampire was spawned from the story of Dracula written by Bram Stoker that is certainly not the case, the story of the vampire started thousands of years ago and p the globe, and continue to engross society today. Every culture has their own story and origination point and these stories have spawned a growing fascination with vampires. It is important to look back and see where it all began in order to uncover the truth of real vampires today.
One of the first stories comes from Mesopotamia; it goes back at least 4,000 years. It starts with Lamastu, the daughter of the sky God Anu. She was a demon goddess who preyed on humans. At night she would creep into people’s homes and steel their baby’s or worse, she would kill them while they were in their crib or even while in their mother’s womb. It is also said she would suck the blood from young men; this would bring sickness, disease, and sterility to the people. When you see images of Lamastu she is seen to have talons or claw like hands, as well as wings.
This is very similar to another vampire like goddess from history, Lilith. (Harris, 2001: Lamastu, 2011) Lilith is a vampire like demon goddess as well, along with the wings and talons; she is sometimes shown to be in the form of an owl or a mix of woman owl type creature. There are a variety of stories that surround Lilith. The most prominent one seems to be the one coming from Jewish origins where it is said that Lilith was the first wife of Adam. In this story the trouble started when Lilith did not want to be in a submissive position to Adam during sexual intercourse.
She believed since God fashioned them of the same dirt and was said to be an equal to Adam, she wished to be his partner and equal, not to be beneath him. She was banished from Adam and the Garden of Eden into darkness where she was then perceived as a Demon and in the darkness she began giving birth to her own children. These children were said to be demons like their Mother. God sent three Angels after her and they asked her to return to the garden but not as Adam’s equal. Lilith refused and for her punishment God killed a hundred of her children daily.
In retaliation Lilith began to take her vengeance out on God’s children by killing human babies. Along with killing human children Lilith had seductive quality’s and would seduce men and come to them at night as a succubus. (Harris, 2001: Lilith, 2001) There are many other stories of similar creatures like Lamastu and Lilith all over the world, such as, the Empisai she came from Greek stories, she was the beautiful daughter of Hecate and would rise out of the ground at night and seduce the Sheppard’s in the fields and then devour them.
In Chinese folk lore there were creatures that had glowing red eyes, they were covered in fur and they would bite their prey with sharp fangs, these creatures were called Kuang-shi. (Harris, 2001) As time went on people traveled from place to place and with them the stories of the vampire like creatures were spread. The stories morphed and changed with the current beliefs and knowledge of the time. There is a plethora of stories out there that blanket cultures and over time have developed a variety of versions and interpretations and created are current knowledge base of what a vampire is.
As much as most people believe that the image of the vampire was spawned from the story of Dracula written by Bram Stoker you can see this is not the case and the story of the vampire started thousands of years ago, many of the beliefs, traditions and rituals real vampires have today are based on these ancient stories. So what is a real vampire? At first glance it can be hard to define, but when you delve in you will start to see categories. The first, most broad category falls under the term, vampire community, and this term is the broadest wording used to describe the vampire culture.
Vampires refer to the vampire community in a similar manner as gay people speak about the gay community and African American’s speak about the black community. (TheoFantastique, 2009) The vampire community is not an organized structure according to Joseph Laycock, Author of Vampires Today: The Truth about Modern Vampirism and graduate of the Harvard Divinity School, he refers to it as an identity group. (Laycock, 2009) Within that identity group you can find the terms life style vampire and real vampire. Real and lifestyle vampire are phrase’s used within the vampire culture to distinguish between the two groups.
Life style vampires or lifestylers, as some would say, are the ones that are fans of vampire fiction such as Bram Stoker, Anne Rice, and Stephanie Meyer. They enjoy dressing up as the undead and participating in role playing games such as Vampire the Masquerade. Some have prosthetic fangs and sleep in coffins. They love everything vampire and embrace all the stereo types. Ms Saige who is a lifestyle vampire has this to say about it,” I live the lifestyle but I am not a real vampire, nobody can live forever. ” She goes on to say there is about 1,000 lifestyle vampires in New York and thousands more worldwide. There’s a clan in Europe, one in California and a huge clan in Texas. We all know each other. ”(Mittelbach & Crewdson, 2000) To be more definitive on the differences Joseph Laycock says the main difference between the two is lifestyle vampires choose their vampiric identity and real vampires see their vampire identity as unchangeable and something that is a part of them. (Laycock, 2009) Real vampires are, “individuals who feel a need to consume blood or feed on the subtle energy of other people in order to sustain their physical, mental, and spiritual health,” according to Joseph Laycock. Laycock, 2010) This is not to say that the murderers you here of in the news that consume blood and are labeled as vampire are the real vampire’s that are being spoken of here. Those people have been labeled vampire by the media. Real vampire is an identity group and is taken on freely by people. The Atlanta Vampire Alliance expands on the definition of a real vampire and goes on to say that if vampires do not feed off the blood or energy of other humans they will become tired, sickly, depressed, and can go through physical suffering or discomfort.
A vampire can also have a variety of psychic abilities and be very psychically aware; such as, sense people’s emotions, see people’s auras and be highly empathetic. The term real vampire can be broken down into three more groups from there, based on their feeding techniques. (AVA, 2005-2011) The first are the Sanguine or Sang for short, vampires who actually consume blood from humans or animals. The amount of blood and the frequency of consumption can vary from vampire to vampire. It can be as little as a drop and can be as frequently as daily and in frequently as monthly.
Blood that is consumed from a human source is always consensual and there is a written or verbal agreement between the donor, the person giving blood, and the vampire. These Sanguine Vampires need to drink human or animal blood to maintain their health and well being. (AVA, 2005-2011)It is not simply done because it arouses them sexually or they like the way it makes them feel or the taste of it. There is a genuine need for it to maintain their health. Though the act of feeding can evoke sexual desires and be a very enjoyable experience that is just an out come on the purpose of drinking blood.
The second type is the Psychic or Psi Vampire they feed on the life force energy of other humans. This life force has been described in other cultures as chi in china, prana in India, or the soul in western religions. Vampires have the ability to draw the subtle energy or life force from other people by using a number of techniques. (AVA, 2005-2011) A vampire by the name of Linda Rabinowitz says, she is a psychic vampire and if you maintain eye contact with her for too long she may be tempted to start taking in your subtle energy.
She goes on to say that she would never actually do that without a person’s permission, as good vampires operate under what is called The Black Veil. This is a code or ethic that states vampires must have the permission of their donors before they will feed off of them. (Monica, 2008 : Laycock, 2010) According to sanguinarius. org, a website dedicated to providing information and resources to real vampire’s, psi vampires can be broken down into further categories based on the type of energy they feed off of.
Some of the examples are; empathic vampires who feed on the emotions of people, sexual vampires who feed on the energies generated during sexual intercourse, elemental vampires who feed off the energies of the elements of earth, wind, fire, and water. Astral feeding is another term and this refers to vampires that travel in the astral plane a feed off the life force of creatures living within the astral plane, dream scape vampires can enter into people’s dreams and feed of the life force within the dream, and last on the list is magical vampires they are able to feed on and manipulate magical energies.
This list is not all inclusive or set in stone one thing that is apparent within the vampire culture is that views on feeding techniques and their validity are ever changing and all the techniques are not accepted as valid by all. The third type is a hybrid vampire which is the combination of a sanguine vampire and a psychic vampire. These hybrid vampires both drink blood as well as feed off the life force energy. They have the ability to choose which source to feed from as they wish. (AVA 2005-2011) Hybrids have the ability to choose their technique or combine a couple.
For instance a vampire may drink the blood of their donor while in the midst of a sexual act thus creating a situation where they are simultaneously feeding off the sexual energy. You can see an example of this in the story given to Katherine Ramsland in her book Piercing the Darkness Undercover with Vampires in America Today. The vampire described an account with a young man that pned a short period of time. They had an initial encounter and the vampire continued to stalk the individual eventually it led up to an evening of exchanging blood and sexual contact.
The vampire describes his desire by saying, “The mingling of blood and semen represents my hunger at the core of my being. It’s about me, who I am as a male with a great need for another’s life force, blood cell to blood cell. The very sight of blood stirs my loins. (Ramsland, 1998, p. 16) Vampires also can be broken down into categories by their beliefs. Vampirism in and of itself is not a religion but within the vampire community there is an array of belief systems. Just like with in main stream society you have Christians, Jews, Buddhist, and Atheist you too have this in the vampire community.
There is also within the community groups of vampires that see their vampirism as a spiritual practice. There are different groups that have different beliefs just like any other religion. Father Sebastian, who is a fang smith, author, and founder of the clan Saber Tooth and the order of Strigoii said, during an interview in the documentary Vampyres, “his group follows the path of the Strigoii which means living vampire in Romanian. It is an older tradition that they have resurrected. It follows what he refers to as a left hand path, vampires are an emerging culture and that humanity is entering the fifth eon of man.
Anton Lavey described it as the age of satin. He goes on to say that within the left hand path tradition people stand out as individuals because within the tradition the majority of people do not believe in such a thing as a god, there is no god except yourself, and that we are a projection of our higher self. ” (Courau, 2007) The vampire community is vast and full of many verities of beliefs and ways of thinking. Though there is great difference in what they believe to be true of a real vampire there are some things they all agree that are not true.
Along with the things that are true of real vampires there are many things that have been skewed and morphed from the current pop-culture trends, many of the Real Vampires of today would love to put an end to the many common beliefs about themselves, their activities, and culture. For starters real vampires do not need to sleep in coffins or the dirt from their hometown, they do not have aversions to the sun, although some claim a sensitivity to it but it borders more on an annoyance than the fire burning effects that the media shows just before they are turned to ash.
They also know that they are on the world for a finite amount of time and do not live forever. They die just like you and me from anything that we as humans can die from. They do not go around stalking people and draining them of all their blood leaving them dead. Many of them love garlic and prefer to wear silver jewelry over gold. Holy water and crosses will not repel them, because many of them are Christian, or catholic or any of the many religions that are in the world. Last but not least they can come into your house uninvited but like most people they have manners and would not just invite themselves in.
Vampires are living all over the world and are very much among us. Though it may be disappointing, the vampires of today are very much human and have no wild and fantastical ability’s to pass onto their victims through their bite or blood. Just because they are not the vampires we read about or seen on the big screen does not make them any less real. As with anything, Hollywood, and pop culture have become very good at taking the ordinary and making it bigger than it really is or more fantastical which can be with how witches, robots, and housewives are portrayed.
Hopefully one day we will be able to separate the fantasy from the reality and see them for what they really are; people like you and me, going to work each day, living life a day at a time. They could be your doctor, friend, teacher or even your neighbor. People fear what they don’t understand, therefore if you look for the truth you will understand that the Real Vampires of today are not to be feared, they just have different energetic needs than the rest of us. References Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA] (2005-2011). Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA].
Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www. atlantavampirealliance. com/educational. html Courau, L. (Director). (2007). Vampyres [Documentary]. Harris, T. HowStuffWorks "How Vampires Work". HowStuffWorks "Science". Retrieved October 3, 2011, from http://science. howstuffworks. com/science-vs-myth/strange-creatures/vampire. htm Lamashtu (Mesopotamian demon) -- Britannica Online Encyclopedia. Encyclopedia - Britannica Online Encyclopedia. Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www. britannica. com/EBchecked/topic/328457/Lamashtu Laycock, J. (2010).
Real vampires as an identity group: analyzing causes and effects of an introspective survey by the vampire community. Nova religio, 14(1), 4-23. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. Lilith. Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. 2001. Retrieved October 09, 2011 from Encyclopedia. com: http://www. encyclopedia. com/doc/1G2-3403802788. html Mittlebach, M. , & Crewdson, M. (2000, November 24). To Die For: Painting the Town Red, and the Capes and Nails Black - New York Times. NY Times Advertisement. Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www. nytimes. com/2000/11/24/movies/to-die-for-painting-the-town-red-and-the-capes-and-nails-black. tml? scp=1&sq=ms. %20saige&st=cse Monica, H. (2008). A Vampire's Life? It's Really Draining. The Washington Post. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. Ramsland, K. M. (1998). Piercing the darkness: undercover with vampires in America today. New York: Harperprism. TheoFantastique | A meeting place for myth, imagination, and mystery in pop culture. (2009, August 25). TheoFantastique | A meeting place for myth, imagination, and mystery in pop culture. Retrieved October 16, 2011, from http://www. theofantastique. com/2009/08/25/joseph-laycock-vampires-today/
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