By Victor Magnus © Sanguinarium.net 2011
What is a Vampire?
Vampires are mythical creatures born of ancient superstitions that appear to be a part of folklore in many diverse cultures of the world. The most common version of the Vampire myth in popular culture today comes to us from the early to mid19th century, when stories of these creatures reached western Europe from the East and captured the imagination of many fearing the faster moving world that came with the industrial revolution. Man was traveling father and faster across the continents at that time due to the steam age.
This new world of technology opened up far distant parts of the world to all and with that came what was perceived as unknown terrors. The simplest description of fictional vampire is a creature the comes back from the dead to feed upon the blood or life energy of unsuspecting victims. There are many varying traits and powers associated with mythical vampires that change with the times. Most changes or new additions to the myth come from popular culture in the form of novels, comic books and graphic novels, role-playing and video games, television and movies. Many ascribe the characteristics of the fictional vampire to those of the Vampyre subculture as well. Following below are a number of commonly asked questions regarding the misconceptions many people have about those that identify themselves as Vampyres.
What is a Vampyre and how is that different from a vampire?
A Vampyre is an individual who practices Vampyrism as a philosophy and for some a spirituality. Vampyres are those who embrace and use the more positive aspects of the vampire mystique and legend in their everyday lives. For most being Vampyre is a life philosophy, tradition and for many a spiritual path. The Vampyre is distinguished from the mythical and fictional vampire by using the and older form of spelling; using a “y” instead of an “I” when referring to themselves in written word. Vampyres are quite human and diverse in their lifestyles, philosophies, and spirituality. They are far from self-deluded “crazies” who live in a fantasy world in mom’s basement.
Vampyres are usually very well adjusted and educated. They attempt to live their lives to the fullest, strive for success in both their personal professional lives. Many Vampryes strive for self-improvement and empowerment. Vampyres can be found everywhere and gather online or at special events worldwide. Many are members of The Sanguinaruim. Below are a number of commonly asked questions regarding the misconceptions many people have about those that identify themselves as Vampyres.
What is The Sanguinarium?
The Sanguinarium is an international network of businesses, orders and individuals who adhere to a specific set of traditions, philosophies and outlooks related to the vampire mythology and was founded in the mid 1990s by Fangsmith and esoteric author Father Sebastiaan. Some say this international network has reached over 10,000 members globally. The Sanguinarium is focused on Vampyre Philosophy and is not a role-playing, fan or literary group. . Members of The Sanguinarium use the older spelling of vampire with a "Y" as in Vampyre.
There are many orders and groups within the Sanguinarium movement that embrace the positive aspects of the vampire archetype in what they call "Vampyre Virtues" or "Red Veils" such as glamour, mystery, romance, and sensuality. The Sanguinarium holds several major public international gatherings known annually which are known as the Endless Night Vampire Ball which take place in New Orleans ever Halloween weekend, in Paris, France in April and also on New York City. Endless Nights is a mix of burlesque performance, a masquerade ball and rock concert to celebrate the various Vampyre Virtues as practiced by members of the Sanguinarium.
Do Vampyres cast a reflection?
Yes. Vampyres are physically human beings and cast a reflection like everyone else.
Do Vampyres sparkle?
No. Vampyres do not sparkle, unless you pour glitter on them.
Are Vampyres in league with the devil and worship Satan?
Not at all. Vampyres practice many religions and spiritual traditions and are very much involved and active within diverse religious institutions around the world. Vampyres can be very devout Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, while many others are often pagans, agnostic, atheist or just simply spiritual.
Are Vampyres are no longer human, they are undead animated corpses?
No. Vampyres live within a human body, breath air, must eat food, and can die and age like any normal person from any disease, affliction or accident.
Are vampires are allergic to garlic?
Some. Many Vampyres love garlic.
Isn’t it true that Vampyres do not eat or drink human foods and beverages?
No. Vampyres often have a very refined tastes in food, There are many excellent professional and amateur chefs that are members of the Vampyre community.
Is Vampyrism is a condition, curse or disease?
No. Vampyrism is a philosophy akin to Bhuddism or many other traditions. Vampyres freely chose to follow the “path of the Vampyre,” which many consider a philosophy and for others it is a form of spirituality. Vampyre philosophy is usually about enjoying life to the fullest, transhumanism, self-empowerment, personal growth, longevity, a healthy self-image, entrepreneurship, personal elegance, happiness and success.
Is it true that Vampyres do not age and are immortal?
No. Vampyres do though try to remain healthy and strive to increase their longevity through exercise and reducing health risks by eating well and enjoying active sports such as running, self-defense, skiing, equestrian, baseball, basketball, yoga, etc.
Are Vampyres repulsed by religious symbols?
No. Vampyres as previously mentioned hail from many religions and spiritual paths. The ouroborous and the ankh are extremely popular as symbols of spiritual immortality for many Vampyres, however some wear crosses and other religious symbols of their faiths routinely and proudly.
Are Vampyres are harmed by silver?
No. Vampyres overwhelmingly love silver as both a color and the metal. Most Vampyres prefer the symbolism of silver as being related to the moon and night as opposed to gold that usually related to the sun.
Are Vampyres fearful of or harmed by sunlight?
Yes and no. Vampyres often avoid strong sunlight because it ages the skin quickly and may cause cancer, but some do enjoy getting their suntans during the summer. Many Vampyres prefer the evening though as a time of quiet, mystery and gazing at the stars and the moon. Most Vampyres though hold normal day jobs and do make a daily commute in sunlight everyday.
Do Vampyres form covens or clans?
Sometimes. This was mostly practiced in the days before the emergence of the modern Sanguinarium, but it is less common now. Vampyres for the most part are naturally very solitary and independent in their everyday lives, but highly social when they interact with other Vampyres at parties and events . In the old days, covens known as houses were popular due to geographic constraints. However, with the advent of the internet these groups have become obsolete as online social networking virtually eradicate the limits of geography when to trying to find others of a like mind.
Are Vampyres vulnerable to bullets and weapons?
Yes. Vampyres are normal human beings. they can die and be harmed by weapons just like everyone else.
Do Vampyres need to drink blood to survive?
No. Vampyres do NOT need to drink blood to survive. The very few that do anything related to blood consider it merely a fetish and only do it within monogamous relationships and never speak about it publicly as such actions are taboo and often illegal.
Must Vampyres sleep in coffins during the day?
No. Many Vampyres though think of this cliché as quite humorous and some do it for fun or as a joke. Some might use it as a technique of sensory deprivation for meditation. Many vampire fans have heard of the term “Coming out of the Coffin” from the television show True Blood. This term came directly from Sanguinarium traditions and culture. The writers at True Blood did their research on many different mythologies. The term was coined in 1997 at Long Black Veil Vampyre Club in NYC, when an individual who got custom made fangs wondered how to tell his parents he was practicing Vampyre philosophy. A friend said to him “just wait until the right time to come out of the coffin.”
Can Vampyres enter upon “holy ground?”
Yes. Vampyres often have a fascination religious symbolism, history, theology and architecture. You will often see Vampyres in the courtyard in the Paris Mosque or exploring Cathedrals such as Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City.
Can Vampyres can hypnotize with a simple gaze?
Maybe. Vampyres are often fascinated with the study of subjects like body language, neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) techniques, human psychology, hypnotism and techniques common to magicians and illusionists to create a sense of suspension of disbelief to give them an edge in life. We call this the “Glamour” and the writers of the television show True Blood copied this from our practices for use by the vampire characters in their show
.Do all Vampyres have sharp, elongated fangs?
Not naturally (well in most cases). Vampyres often see getting prosthetic fangs as an expression of their personal glamour and as a symbol and homage of their connection to the vampire mythos. They are available from professional fangsmiths who make custom removable fangs for the Vampyre community. They strictly a cosmetic piece and most take them off when working at their jobs or for holidays with family.
Do all Vampyres wear black?
No. Vampires dress in a any color that suits their fancy. Many do however prefer to dress in Black and consider it a color of power, mystery, and authority, that is why many police, judges and lawyers wear black as their primary color.
Do Vampyres wear long capes, top hats and dresses?
Sometimes. Many Vampyres call this courtly attire, and this type of formal dress is often reserved for when one attends a Vampire Ball or Halloween party. Most choose to dress in fashionable contemporary clothing.
Are Vampyres all are rich, corporate executives, wealthy bachelors or aristocrats?
No. Vampyres may come from all walks of life and economic means. Some Vampyres are often very enterprising and industrious, and see materialism as a part of creating a comfortable living. Others work at jobs and live a conservative fiscal life focusing on establishing a sense of security financially for themselves. Many Vampyres love business and success thus becoming entrepreneurs as a way to live in an individualistic, self reliant and independent manner. many live a conservative fiscal life focusing on establishing a sense of security financially for themselves..
Many Vampyres are attracted to entertainment professions where they can have an audience such as being musicians, artists, writers, dancers, tour guides, public speakers, etc. However, many are lawyers, doctors, electricians, college professors, mechanics, professionals, computer programmers, school teachers, nurses, business owners and so on.