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I hear that there are many vampyres/vampires (I'm really not the type of person that nitpicks over spelling) out there who are repeatedly approached by non-vampyres wishing to be turned/embraced/whatever. Now the standard response we would normally give is usually something to the effect of "You can't become a vampyre, you have to be born one. You're wasting your time looking for someone to turn you."
Now this response may be the most accurate, but I find it rather heartless and more than a little bit prejudicial. The reaction came about largely because most of those seeking to be turned had a poor grasp of vampyrism or even worse, a poor grasp of reality. Nowadays, as more people are developing a clear grasp of who and what we are, we need to begin considering that perhaps some of those people asking to be turned are genuinely interested in vampyrism as a spiritual path.
We need to learn to distinguish between the vampyric condition and the vampyric spirituality. The vampyric condition is what we are. It is something that is innate; it is a thing that each vampyre has had for his or her entire life and something that cannot be changed. It is the quality in us that is static. It is the trait that is always there in all vampyres no matter what. It doesn't matter if we pay attention to it, it doesn't matter how much we've learned about it, it doesn't even matter if we're aware of it, as evidenced by the number of latent vampyres in the world. The vampyric condition is the thing that is exclusive to us.
The vampyric spirituality, on the other hand, is quite different. The spirituality is what we practice. This is the thing that many of us adopt after learning of our condition. It is the thing that allows us to accommodate the needs of our condition. The spirituality of the vampyre is what we've created based on what comes naturally to us. It is the skills that are augmented by our unique state as vampyres. The vampyric spirituality is more easily practiced by many of us; however it is not exclusive to us.
The thing that I interpret as prejudice is that many vampyres seem to behave with a sort of racial supremacist philosophy that one needs to be born a certain way to be privy to certain knowledge. I think that if we wish to be taken seriously as a legitimate group, we can't dismiss people for things they are unable to change. I know of no other legitimate spiritual group who behaves in such a manner. The vampyre condition may be exclusive to us, but the spirituality is something that we should share with anyone who has a genuine interest and desire to learn. With this in mind, we do still need to take actions to preserve our culture and the uniqueness many of us take such pride in.
Many would refer to all those who wish to adopt vampyrism as vampyre lifestylers, a term that refers to non-vampyres who take on a vampyric image and persona. I think this is horribly inaccurate, as a lifestyler is typically a person who is concerned with the image of the vampyre, caring little of the spirituality. The people I wish to address are those who are concerned with the spirituality of the vampyre. Vampyric "converts", if you will. I think these people need a term that expresses their involvement with vampyrism, while distinguishing them from those who are natural vampyres.
The term I believe is appropriate to describe such people is "neovampyres" (or neovampires, whichever way you'd normally spell it). I think that this is an appropriate title, being a newer form of vampyrism, the prefix "neo" suits it quite well. Many pagans have adopted the similar term "neo-pagan" to refer to the newer pagan groups and organizations. A final advantage is that it allows non-vampyres into the community in a manner other than simply as donors, and it does this without besmirching the original intended meaning of the word vampyre.
I do want to issue a final word of caution, though. I think it should be made clear that feeding from others is a requirement of the vampyre condition, not of the vampyre spirituality. As such, I feel feeding should be discouraged amongst neovampyres, as it would only be taking energy from others unnecessarily, rather than fulfilling a need, as natural vampyres do.
So now, perhaps with this new concept and new perspective at our disposal, we will begin to react differently to those who wish to become like us. Instead of greeting them with cold rejection, we could perhaps explain that, though their request may be impossible, there is an alternative. Maybe we could even help teach them the things we have discovered ourselves, in the hopes that someday such people will become a valuable part of the vampyric community.
Eerie America TV Series
Eerie America could very well be called The Fodors Travel Guidebook for The Addams Family. I read some in-depth information about the show and saw the promo, and from what I can tell, this will be an absolutely AWESOME series if they can get it off the ground. (I'm actually praying they will.) Let others know and see who can help. This is something that should happen! Let's pull together and make it so!
New Orleans Vampire Association
NOVA is a State Recognized Non-Profit Organization geared toward helping the homeless in the New Orleans area and working towards its greater goals, including a homeless shelter in the Greater New Orleans area.
If you would like to donate money, food, or supplies toward the cause, please click here for more info or to donate.
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