The original site this came from is long gone, so this has been rescued from the Wayback Machine. |
The views here are those of the author, and are presented for archival purposes.
I have made layout changes, but otherwise left the grammar alone. ~Sphynx
The structure of the human mind is complicated enough not to have allowed psychology
ever to become a "hard science" as for instance mathematics. Everything
leaves room to exceptions and interpretations. But sometimes, basic tendencies
can be explained. Also, when it comes to trying to explain why some people try
to be a vampire by any means or simply pretend to be one.
Roleplaying games have always been an attractive method to escape the daily
life. There is a great variety of games that are available to the consumer.
Among them Vampire: The Masquerade by WhiteWolf.
V:tM vampires are quite attractive figures. They are highly sexual attractive,
have superhuman powers and are in every way desirable. And most of all: misunderstood
creatures. The game is based upon gang wars, corruption and the vampires daily
struggle not to lose his humanity.
This taken together assumes a beautiful and pathetic picture of a person
which has to fight against all odds, even himself in order not to lose his
path in this strange and evil world. This picture is attractive mostly to
those who well want to accumulate the beauty of the image, yet are not willing
to go the step towards claiming having lost touch with humanity. Being a martyr-like
tragic hero is still something different than being a predatory creature.
THE CENTURIES-OLD EVIL OVERLORD
One phenomenon that seems to be unavoidable both on the web as well as in
the realm of real life is someone suddenly approaching the unsuspecting person
suddenly claiming that he is centuries old and knows all the hidden secrets
one longs for. Usually, this person claims immortality at least and tries
to persuade others into being an evil overlord who wants to reclaim his right
to world rulership at best.
Many of the here mentioned vampire characters base on the concept of immortality.
Immortality is also usually one of the major traits that get named by vampire
wannabes (people stalking vampires begging them to turn them into vampires
as well). What is there behind immortality?
People who claim immortality for themselves usually never claim to be young
still. Usually they claim centuries of age, if not millennia in some cases.
So obviously, the desire for immortality which is inherent both in the wannabe
and the claimer is a hidden desire for being wise, knowledgeable and in any
other way "better" than the one he is presenting his image to, especially
in combination with other superhuman claims.
It is easy to conclude from this that those people are trying to compensate
their lacks by an artificial cover up in the shape of the vampire. It is not
so much the beauty of the creature they are trying to emulate, but rather
its superiority to mankind, or what they interpret as it.
In the Gothic scene, the vampire has his very special and unique status.
It is a figure representing a very special form of Gothicism that is directly
related to the middle of the 19th century. Besides the vampire, things like
Victorian clothing, authors like Lord Byron, E.A. Poe, H.P. Lovecraft and
occult authors like A. Crowley are highly recommended. The whole flair of
this scene is highly "romantic" in a special sense, aristocratic
and full of fantasy.
In this context, the vampire is presented as the mythological figure we all
know from films like the "Dracula" series with Christopher Lee,
the vampire soap opera "Dark Shadows" or writings like "Carmilla"
by Sheridan Le Fanu and the like.
This mythological vampire has his own attractiveness. He is aristrocratic,
attractive, has good manners and is a supernatural being which again can fly,
shapeshift and burns in the sun or at the sight of holy symbols. It is the
perfection of the "beautiful evil". A picture adored in this scene,
thus often imitated in appearance and lifestyle.
THE RICEAN (A/K/A "RICE CRISPIE")
Anne Rice has gained much fame among vampire lovers by her novels "The
Chronicles of the Vampire" which consists of four books of which one
has been seen as a movie in the cinemas under the title "Interview with
the Vampire". In this series of novels, the vampire has been presented
in a slightly variated form. Since this time the least he is not regarded
as the foul and hideous creatures like the "Nosferatu" which was
presented in a film from the early 1920´s. He has become quite human.
He lost his unlikely traits such as the affection to holy symbols, the shapeshifting
and the ability to fly. Yet, he is still a supernatural being, neither dead
nor alive. He is still supernaturally enabled and affected by the sunlight,
but he has made a great step into reality. A person that could be nearly everyones
neighbor, just with a strong tendency to avoid the sunlight.
This vampire presented has a great advantage against his comerades from the
RPG and the older times. He is much more human in comparison, much less easy
to detect and much more likely to be "among us". The VRI insitute
made a poll on vampires and the possibility of their existance. When it came
to the C. Lee type, nearly noone believed that he could exist in this form.
When it came to the Ricean type, more than 50% thought he might exist. The
poll was made among vampire enthusiasts.
There are and have always been people who were fascinated with vampires for
their whole lifes. Ever since the vampire has been presented in fiction and
mythology, he had an alluring character which ranged from true evil to desperate
seeker. In every case, he offered the instable mind a possibility to escape
from reality, either through fiction or - as nowadays - even through roleplay.
Especially in the field of RPG, there is only a small step from fiction to
reality. It is easy to lose sight for where the real character ends and the
fictional character begins as the presented clans offer choice from all fields
of human interest such as arts, politics, magic and the like. Those who might
seek comfort in RPG from daily life are not generally endangered, but there
might be persons who need to be shown real perspectives in their real lifes
in order to show that reality might be still attractive enough to live it
instead escape it so that there is no need to lose oneself in the idea of
being a vampire.
The same goes for all the other types as well. No matter which vampire a
person tries to present, in all cases it assumes to be a case of someone not
being sufficed with ones own existance and abilities. The charming and alluring
character of the fictional vampire, no matter if presented in the mythological
or the modern style, can never be a substitute for ones own life. Rather it
can cause severe problems such as psychosomatic problems that indeed assume
to the problems real vampires have. But in most cases, it causes an affection
for things no real vampire would even think of reacting to, such as garlic
and crosses. It becomes even more dangerous when it comes to the belief in
supernatural powers. I met a man who claimed to be able to fly. I do not know
if he was really convinced of his belief or if he just wanted to put himself
into the limelight of the Gothic scene, but one can easily see where the crackpoint
I will not deny that even some of the people who have been fascinated with
vampires might actually be some. But according to the fact that fake vampires,
or rather folkloristic vampires as I tend to call them - have developed their
symptomatic from their early affection, it gives the researcher, mortal and
vampire alike, a hard time to distinguish how serious and if serious, how
realistic a person is about his claims.
This article is presented as part of an ongoing
effort to present other views outside of, as well as within, the online
vampire community. As such, the views and attitudes contained in this
article are entirely those of the author(s), and may not necessarily
be shared by SphynxCatVP. The webmaster is not under obligation to update
or otherwise keep current the contents of this article. Most
importantly, only you can decide for yourself whether this article or
any of the author(s) other views are useful or applicable to you - use
your own reasoning and judgment.