Religion and the Vampire, Interview Eleven

Posted: Sunday, 1 July, 2012 by deacongray in Religion

****Edited, added after publishing****
(Boy, I was so excited to get this interview published, I skipped a few things! I do hope our readers will forgive me!)

This interview was with long-time community member, Pink Lady. Pink Lady lives in Virginia, is a member of Blue Ridge Vampires and Otherkin (BRAVO), founder of New River Valley Vampires, and also moderates some very awesome Yahoo Elist groups.

**** Done editing! ****

Hello and thank you very much for agreeing to this interview. I know that religion is a very personal topic, one that many of us are not willing to discuss with others. It is especially difficult to discuss with those outside our respective religious circles as not everyone is open to beliefs other than their own.

GYP: Will you please start us off by explaining your vampirism? Are you sang or psi?
SR: I am a blood drinker. I try not to use the word sanguinarian because it has a roleplaying feel to it, trying to make the act (and those who do it) more mysterious than it is or needs to be.

GYP: Thank you! And what faith do you follow?
SR: I am Jewish and I follow the practices of Reform Judaism, aka Jew Lite. I keep somewhat kosher and attend services once or twice a year. I have a tanakh that I read cover-to-cover around Yom Kippur. I have not had a bat mitzvah–my mother, raised Conservative, insisted that I should not–and I don’t plan on getting it as an adult.

GYP: How long have you followed this particular path?
SR: My entire life. Judaism is not an evangelical faith. There are stricter, more Orthodox sects that believe one cannot be converted into the faith, only born into it. I’ve grown more observant over the years. I’m the only member of my family who follows kosher law, fasts for Yom Kippur, and other things.
GYP: Do you think following kosher laws, fasting for Yom Kippur and the other things causes any sort of divide between you and your family members who are not as observant?
SR: My close family takes a lot of my quirky beliefs in stride, and they see my kosher diet and religious fasting as just a few more strange behaviors.

I’ve often thought about coming out as a blood drinker to my family. The maternal side of my family has a sun sensitivity, running from “burns easily” to “sun poisoning.” My mother is (jokingly) nicknamed “the vampire” for her extreme sunlight sensitivity as well as how she can be emotionally draining on others. Psychic vampire or Jewish mother? (One and the same?)

Nearly two years ago now, I had a phone interview with a New York production company with a Jewish woman who was looking to make a vampire reality show or documentary or something, and she tried to write off my blood drinking as a symptom of my kosher diet. (She also gave me the same “quaint ancestral practice” spiel, which I found rather demeaning from a fellow Jew!)

GYP: Do you ever feel that your vampiric needs are contrary to the teachings of your religion?
SR: The Aaronite priesthood considered the consumption of any blood, human or animal, to be sacrilege, as a being’s nefesh (and I’ve seen that word translated as everything from “divine spark” to “earthly soul”) and therefore too representative of G-d for mortals to consume. (There’s a similar taboo keeping people from eating animal flesh after a sacrifice.) There’s also the concept of pikuach nefesh, where rules set out in the Torah may be broken in order to save a life. I’ve often asked if drinking blood counts. While I can certainly survive without it, I am quite miserable without it.
GYP: When you ask about drinking blood, did you get any flak over it, or did your Rabbi just take in stride?
SR: I’ve never mentioned my blood drinking to a rabbi or anyone else of the faith. Whenever I’ve discussed pikuach nefesh with other Jews, it’s always been hypothetical situations involving blood transfusions, eating raw meat, etc. The overwhelming consensus: proof required. It’s one thing to say that you need something like an addiction, it’s quite another thing to need something for survival. Needing a blood transfusion is obvious. Why would someone need raw or bloody meat specifically for survival, and what proof is there to back up such a claim? Based on such discussions, I’ve often wondered if blood drinking is simply feeding an addiction to the point of unsustainable reliance.

GYP: Do you incorporate your religion into your vampirism?
GYP: Do you incorporate your vampirism into your religion?
SR: As far as incorporating vampirism into Judaism and vice versa, I know of no other person, Jewish or scholarly or otherwise, who drinks blood or consumes energy, so I haven’t had the opportunity to share. Just as a personal observation, I believe most people who consider themselves vampires follow a non-Abramaic religion that does not seek to codify day-to-day living for the masses. I consider my situation fairly unique.
GYP: Yes, I believe that your situation might be fairly unique. I imagine that the Christian sects don’t have quite as many religious tenets that must be strictly followed concerning blood. Perhaps a Muslim vampire might have a similar experience. I do not know of one yet.

  1. […] to a mainstream organized religion, as was the case with a “Reform Jewish” vampire interviewed by The Graveyard Press, a vampiric secularist is an individual who tends to look primarily toward medical and scientific […]

  2. This article is very interesting! Most people think that vampires are satanic or not religious at all! (I sadly used to think this way) Until I have met vampires who are Christian, who belong to my church I go to. In fact there are special Sunday night services for them. (I guess they can’t go or don’t want to go during the day time. Or maybe the rest of the church don’t want them to go during other services?) This article makes me want to interview the Christian vampires that I know.

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