Demystifying 'Real' Vampirism For The Rest Of Us An overview of modern vampirism for the general public
Psychic and sanguinarian vampires are individuals who cannot adequately sustain their own physical, mental, or spiritual wellbeing without the taking of blood or vital lifeforce energy from other sources. Without feeding a vampire will become lethargic, sickly, depressed, and often go through physical suffering or discomfort. Such individuals generally consider "real vampirism" to be an extension of personal identity rather than a lifestyle. While there are those who self-identify as psychic or sanguinarian vampires who adhere to the "vampire lifestyle" by adopting a vampire aesthetic, wearing prosthetic fangs, or participating in roleplay games, vampi(y)re lifestylers are not synonymous with those who believe they must feed on psychic or life energies and/or blood. Blood fetishism and sanguinarian vampirism are likewise not synonymous and exist as their own distinct subcultures. Blood fetishists are aroused by seeing, smelling, and touching blood whereas sanguinarian vampires believe that the drinking of small quantities of blood represents a health and quality of life issue - a need rather than a desire.
Real vampirism does not constitute a cult, a religion, a paraphilia, an offshoot of the BDSM subculture, a community composed exclusively of delusional or mentally ill participants, and is not what is depicted in fictional books, on television, or in movies. The use of obsolete psychiatric diagnostic terminology such as "Clinical Vampirism", "Renfield's Syndrome", and "Autovampirism" or the comparison of vampirism to the medical condition known as Porphyria is inaccurate and without merit. Vampirism is not considered a religion by the majority of self-identified vampires whose most commonly reported religious and spiritual beliefs include Atheism, Paganism, Christianity, Satanism, Buddhism, Daoism, Shamanism, Magick, Occultism, Wicca, and Vampi(y)ric Spirituality. Some in the media and in academia have chosen to characterize vampires as criminals who engage in subversive and dangerous practices. Real vampires are mistakenly thrust into the same categories as ritual animal or human sacrifice, cannibalism, fetishism, fanatical religious expression, and labeled as unstable threats to themselves and others. The overwhelming majority of self-identified vampires adhere to ethical and safe feeding practices, are of sound mind and judgment, and productively contribute to society.
Many self-identified vampires report that they suffer from asthma, migraine headaches, depression, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and other endocrine system related disorders exceeding typical prevalence rates with comorbidity of possible adrenal or pituitary dysfunction. Due in large part to increased sociological-based scholarship there persists a hope that not only will there be more awareness on the part of the general public as to the practices and beliefs of "real-life vampires", but also increased interest from medical researchers. Some sanguinarian and even psychic vampires would like to see genetic and other comprehensive medical testing conducted to help determine what about them, if anything, is truly aberrant from the rest of humanity. Even those self-identified vampi(y)res not searching for answers through medical science only wish to be left to their own devices and exist among us without fear of ridicule or hostility. Healthy skepticism and analytical thinking aren't enemies of the vampire community - they are essential tools integral to the growth and understanding of vampiric identity.
Demystifying 'Real' Vampirism For The Rest Of Us By Merticus; Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA] & Suscitatio Enterprises, LLC February 10, 2013 - This article may be redistributed, translated, or adopted by other organizations provided there are no content modifications and full citation is included.
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