Vampire Codex Part 1



The Vampire Codex

By Michelle Belanger


The Vampire Codex

The Vampire Codex is a document written by occultist and psychic vampire Michelle Belanger for use as the instructional text of House Kheperu (www.kheperu.org). The prototype of this work was first set to paper in late 1991. A specially printed version was offered to select students in conjunction with the International Society of Vampires beginning in 1995. Later revisions led to the Sanguinarium edition, published by the Sanguiarium Press in October 2000. This version is derived from the Sanguinarium edition which also came to be circulated widely on the Internet.

The Vampire Codex has had a significant impact on the worldwide community of psychic vampires, becoming the fundamental text used by numerous Houses, Orders, Covens, and Clans. It has influenced the teachings of vampire groups throughout the US, Canada, and Western Europe. It has also come to the attention of several noteworthy occult organizations, including the Temple of Set, the IOT and the Church of Satan. (Peter Gilmore, current head of the Church of Satan, expressed his disappointment at Michelle's absence at the New York City release of "V" as he wanted her autograph on the special edition of the Codex released with that work).

As the Kheprian Order has continued to expand and reveal deeper and more complicated levels of its teachings, the Codex has continued to grow since its first underground releases. A special edition written for the Order of the Strigoi Vii was released as book two of "V" October 2003 by vampyrealmanac.com in conjunction with Aangel Publishing. An expanded, revised edition will be published by Weiser Books in the fall of 2004. This will be the definitive edition, featuring 108 individual sections broken up into divisions which address psychic vampirism, basic energy work, and advanced metaphysical techniques. The version below has come to be known as the Vampire Codex: Internet Edition and is freely and widely shared with any and all interested parties. It is derived mainly from the 2000 Sanguinarium edition, although it includes a few sections originally left out of that published edition.

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We are the many-born. We are the immortal. We have been known by many names throughout the ages, though few have understood the truth of our existence.

Endlessly, we die and are reborn, changed yet unchanging throughout the ages. We move from lifetime to lifetime, taking up bodies as garments.

We are watchers and we are wanderers.

We seek knowledge and understanding above all.

Long ago we strove the sunder the life of our body from our roving minds, for it grounded us. It held us back. It bound us to a single span of days. Through a ritual of death and rebirth, we severed our living ties and gained immortality.

Now we are freed of the life of the body, but we are irrevocably tied to the life we cut away. It sustains us and empowers us.

We thirst for life and we feed upon it.

It is our greatest weakness and our greatest prize.

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Eternal, we wander the aeons, moving to the rhythm of our own inner tides.

Freed from the most fundamental of cycles, we are nevertheless beings bound by cycles. Our heightened awareness of ourselves and the world around us forces us to acknowledge natural rhythms that others simply ignore.

As the day waxes and wanes, we can feel it, and we know that the true realm of magick is the night, for that is when we wax in power. As the moon grows gravid and slim, we feel it, and we know, too, that there are more complex rhythms of power tied to her phases. As the wheel of the year turns round, we feel the wild times, the apogees and nadirs of power.

The dark time of the year is our time, as are the threshold times when we celebrate Samhain and Beltane. These days are our Im Kheperu, the Day of Transformation, and our Im Sekhemu, the Day of Double Power. As beings poised on the threshold of many things, the energies of these holidays affect us profoundly. At these times we enjoy our greatest power, but in balance, we also pay a stronger price. Waves of energy rise and fall within us, and when in their grip, our hunger burns.

Forever, we are active elements moving through passive worlds.

Our rules are our own. We accept no others. We define who we are and what we shall become. There is nothing in our lives which we cannot control if we but choose to.

Our memories are carried like gems within our souls. Over the lifetimes they build and crystallize until we can take them out and gaze upon them as we choose.

Life sustains us, but death defines us. We are the many-born. Our conception was in death, and each death now brings us a new beginning, forever without end.

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Everything we touch, we change. We take in energy constantly, and although this is how we feed, this energy is never destroyed. Through us, it is transformed. It changes states. It resonates to a higher level.

Yet every birth is accompanied by struggle and pain. Every rebirth is just as painful. It may seem that we bring destruction, chaos, and turmoil to all those around us. And in a sense we do. But the changes are always for the better, even though the initial change may seem terrible.

Change is terrible. It tears away what we've grown comfortable with. It destroys what we find familiar, stable, and simple, leaving uncertainty in its wake. But to face uncertainty and to thrive is to become stronger. Everything must change or die. We are active participants in this universal mystery.

Every person that we come into contact with, no matter how casually, is altered. Wherever we go, change will follow. Our dynamic spirits stretch out all around us, and the wake we leave in our passing is like ripples on the ocean. Only the ripples we cause can become tidal waves.

As beings on a threshhold state, we are living embodiments of the dynamic complimentarity that keeps the universe in constant motion. This is our burden. Yet this also is our purpose. In the gray area between two polar opposites lies revelation. We feed upon all around us. Yet we can also harness that energy to heal. We tear away and bring destruction, yet we also nurture new growth. This is our nature, the mystery of who we are.

There is no rebirth without destruction. Light only blinds without shadow to throw it into relief. Understanding comes from balancing all these things within the Self. We are that Balance. We affect it, and it affects us. We are facilitators of the universal flow. We must accept this, and never fear to move with that flow.

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We are neither wholly born nor wholly made what we are. The choice for us to become was made long ago. From that time onward, we have been reborn again and again, carrying within us in every lifetime the seed of what we are.

Sometimes we forget ourselves, and wander our lives like sleepwalkers, only half-aware of our true natures. Yet sleeping or awakened, we are born with the potential for transformation.

Awakening is a process of expanded awareness. Anyone with gifts and talents of a subtle nature undergoes an awakening in their life. This is when they come into their own, finally accepting what has been latent within them since birth. For us, the process can be traumatic, as the existence we awaken to opens us up to a host of strange thoughts, sensations, and experiences which lie outside the limits accepted even by other Awakened.

Awakening is the alchemical forge in which we are transformed from dross to spiritual gold. It is the recalling of a part of our Selves that has become clouded over time. It is becoming more than the little self of this lifetime, grasping the totality of who we were and who we are to be -- our Essential Self.

Some of us have greater potential than others. Some are born with an instinctive understanding of their potential and they may gradually come to realize that potential on their own. They recall without prompting and their power is great.

The bulk of our number are born ignorant to what they are. As they grow and mature, there are subtle hints of the latent power, but fear and self-doubt generally keep these from being acknowledged and accepted. Such as these must be awakened to their true selves by another of our number already familiar to our ways.

There are two rituals of initiation. The Lesser Initiation is an exchange of feeding which occurs between the teacher and the initiate. The initiate is drained deeply, often for the first time. This heightens his awareness of his energy body and will often catalyze him into realizing his potential in the next few days. The sensations that this process inspires are usually too intense to ignore or explain away. If fed from deeply enough, his instincts will overcome him and he will feed from others in order to replenish his depleted system.

The Greater Initiation involves a ritual death and rebirth which occurs on both the physical and spiritual levels for the initiate. It is visionary and shamanic in nature and forces the initiate to face himself and all that he has been within the boundaries of his own soul. Like all deaths and rebirths, this ritual strips away old identities and assumptions. The little self of this lifetime is subsumed into the greater Self, and the initiate is irrevocably changed. This rite is reserved for only the strongest minds, for any who are weak or filled with fear may not survive the initiation. Their minds can be blown away like dry autumn leaves in the face of the totality of who they are.

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We often associate with the Awakened or with those who hover upon the threshold of Awakening. We prefer the company of those who can interact at least to some degree with the level of reality that is our constant daily experience.

By our very natures we Awaken those around us. Even those not of our kind can be affected by the transformative effects of our presence. We draw out latent powers and provide a burden of proof for individuals who have otherwise rejected their own natures due to self-doubt. We can use this intentionally if we choose, though it will always occur to some degree, whether intentional or not.

Sometimes we mistake a Potential of our own kind merely for one of the Awakened. If such an unrecognized Potential is fed from, the effect, though unintentional, is equivalent to the Lesser Initiation. The Potential feels himself undergo a change and is driven to feed from others. Such accidents cannot be abandoned. Confused as to their true nature, ignorant of their power, they wield that power nonetheless and can cause much damage to themselves and others if left to struggle on their own.

Still others have Potential, but it is too weak to ever fully be realized in this lifetime. Others are too unstable to survive the initiation. They are best left to sleep so they will come to maturity in their own time. If forced to awaken, they are merely shadows of us -- weak in power, unstable in mind, whose powers are likely to fade unless constantly put to use or manipulated by their mentor.

Sometimes a feeding vessel may manifest the symptoms of vampirism, but this is merely a sympathetic state brought about through prolonged or obsessive contact with one of our own. Such a one's natural reserves are depleted to a point where they cannot recover their vitality on their own. Given time, however, and separated physically and / or emotionally from the dominating personality, such a person will gradually recover and return to a normal, non-vampiric state. In some cases, the afflicted person does not wish to give up the state of sympathetic vampirism. If the person understands even a little of what has happened to him and wants the condition to continue, he can maintain this quasi-vampiric state indefinitely and may even eventually come to be mistaken for one of our number as he will accept that he is nothing else.

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There are many beyond ourselves who have the potential for power. They also undergo a process like our Becoming which consists primarily of a expanded awareness and an awakening to their greater Self. This commonly occurs with the onset of puberty, although it may happen later or earlier, depending on nature and circumstance. These are commonly referred to as the Awakened. Their ways and their powers are diverse.

Like us, many of the Awakened follow a particular archetype. They use this archetype as a symbol to define themselves and their powers. They have a fundamental connection to the energy of this archetype, and although human in body, they are something more in spirit. Angels, witches, the Fey, Otherkin, Shifters, these are but a few of the archetypes that may be followed. Like ourselves, it may be that such individuals are responsible for inspiring much of the folklore that gave rise to the archetype in the first place and now, in a less spiritually open time, they have only the buried grains of truth lingering in the folklore to fall back upon to define themselves. Like us, they are human and Other. They are spiritual travelers who take up bodies as garments. We should always treat them with respect, for ultimately, we serve common goals.

You will be attracted to the Awakened in much the same manner that you are drawn to Potentials of our kind. Much is unspoken and unconscious. Trust that your greater Self is guiding you, for it knows and understands what may not always be accessible to your conscious mind.

Like ourselves, the Awakened can perceive and manipulate the many layers of reality. They call themselves by many names and they follow many diverse paths. Most of the Awakened draw their power from the positive, generative forces of reality. Thus, they may fear us when they first encounter us. This fear arises from ignorance. Though we are darkness and they are light, we all work toward the same goal. We each in our way bring awareness to the world, catalyzing those with potential toward Awakening.

When we come upon one who is verging upon Awakening, it is our duty to guide and instruct them. Do not mistake every Awakened being for a Potential of our kind. Nor should you attempt to push those not of our kind into accepting our ways and our arts. This way is not for everyone, and no one should ever be forced into following it. Be aware that some may resonate with more than one archetype, and these are the most difficult of all to identify and to educate. They may have much in common with us, but there will be limits to what we can explain and help them understand. In all cases, serve your function as a catalyst, helping them toward their path but not seeking to define that path for them. Ultimately, each person must walk their path alone.

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You are responsible for teaching and guiding those of our kind whom you have awakened to their true natures. You must guide them through their transformation, helping to ease the transition from one level of awareness to the next.

Those who you guide in this way will be as your children and will share a deep bond with you like no other.

You will know their very heart and soul. The mysteries of their Essential Self will be unveiled to you. No distance will separate your awareness of them.

The link goes both ways, and they can communicate with you and know your feelings when they choose. You may use the link to feed from them at a distance, to borrow their strength as your own.

Their thoughts will be yours to know; their actions will fall under your control if you so choose -- but do not seek to abuse this power you wield over them for as dearly as they may love you and revere you while under your control, they will just as thoroughly hate and revile you once that control has slipped away.

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Our kind has ways of recognizing its own. Often this recognition occurs on an unspoken level and is very subtle, so you must learn to trust your impulses and allow your greater Self to guide you.

Especially in the unawakened, this recognition manifests itself as a Beacon which calls us to them so that they may realize their Potential. The Beacon calls to us on a very basic level, and often speaks purely to our unconscious minds. Thus we find ourselves inexplicably attracted to a Potential, stricken with a sudden fascination for him and a need to draw him closer to us. If we listen to our perceptions and trust our instinctual reactions, we can refine this awareness of others until we can consciously pick out the Beacon in those around us. Sometimes, even after such a refinement has been achieved, the Beacon still slips past our conscious actions and we find ourselves simply responding to its unspoken pull. The pull of the Beacon drives us to feed from the Potential, thus awakening him to the most basic aspect of his hidden nature.

We must learn to recognize the Beacon in others, to judge its varying degrees of strength so that we may go about the awakening in a deliberate manner. We must learn to recognize when it is appropriate to awaken a Potential and when that awakening will bring only grief to all involved.

We must let our judgment rule us in this matter and we must sometimes resist the merely instinctual pull of the Beacon for awakenings that are not appropriate. Not all of those with Potential are fit for the awakening, and if we act rashly we may unwittingly loose the beast of our destruction through a careless move

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The Beacon is present to a limited degree in those who have already become. It is strong enough for us to recognize one of our number when we come into contact with him, even if this recognition is the barest hint of perception.

We may also be known by our distinct auras: deep purple sometimes shot through with red, surrounded by a nimbus of black or grey mist. The outer layer often stretches into tendrils that extend far beyond our physical forms, reaching out and feeding from those around us. To those who can perceive that level of reality, we often appear to be a nexus of such tendrils.

The tendrils are varying shades of grey, with a smooth, rope-like appearance. They are not perceptibly present in everyone; they can be filaments so fine even the most experienced seer will have difficulty perceiving them.

We are often noted for our pallor, but more often it is the intensity of our eyes which gives us away. We tend to be thin with a powerful and often intimidating presence which wraps about us like a shroud.

Our hands are often very cold. This is a cold which saps heat away, and lingers where it has been touched. It is a symptom of our constant, low-level energy draw. If we consciously channel energy through our hands, they grow very warm. It is not the temperature which is important: it is the responsiveness of our physical bodies to subtle effects that is distinctive.

We are sensitive to strong odors and tastes, as our senses are often acute. Many of us can hear in a more than normal human range. Some of this is physical hearing, some may be limited clairaudience, as our subtle senses extend far beyond our physical selves. We are almost always much stronger and quicker than we look, for the body is merely a vessel for a much more powerful Will.

We are sensitive to light and to the excessive heat of the sun. This is symptomatic of our acute sensitivity to energy. The radiation of the sun is an overwhelming form of energy which our systems have trouble assimilating. Many of us burn very easily in the sun. Almost all of us are made sick by it. When required to be out in full daylight, we develop headaches, nausea, dizziness. The light saps us of our strength, leaving us exhausted and drained. The night is our natural dominion, for in the mythic imagination, it is the realm of secrets, of magick, and all that the day-lit world rejects.

We carry ourselves with a proud determination and can seem arrogant, detached, and cold. We are often of a predatory nature, and with difficulty avoid using those around us.

To most we seem unapproachable. There is an air about us which seems somehow to set us apart. Even those ignorant to our true natures react to this, treating us with respect, attraction or fear.

The unawakened stare then look away from us and are unable to meet our gaze. They are disturbed by our presence but rarely will they understand what disturbed them or why. Instinctually, they fear us.

The Awakened will know us for what we are, though they may hesitate to put a name to it. Still, on an unspoken level they will understand and attempt to define us through the filters of their individual beliefs and symbol systems.

Children will know us, though rarely do they fear. In their innocence, they have not yet learned to doubt, and thus are open to a clear perception of the world around them.

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To the Awakened who can perceive energy or the subtle body, we may appear flawed or incomplete. This difference in our energy bodies can be mistaken as illness or disease. In truth, most of our kind partially or completely lack an energy center. This is most often the one located in the belly, just below the navel. It is because we lack this center that we need to feed, for our subtle bodies cannot sustain the energy necessary to maintain our physical forms. There is a schism between our body and our spirit, and while this schism places us in our threshold state, it creates weaknesses along with many benefits.

Our physical connection to life is thin and weak. In those of our number who have not become, this may manifest itself in actual physical debility or illness. Severe allergies, immune system malfunctions, and other birth defects are not uncommon. If they gain awareness of their powers and at the very least learn how to feed, they may learn to compensate for these weaknesses. However, once you have learned to compensate, if you are unable to feed enough to sustain yourself, this weakness will return with greater severity than before.

Often well-meaning Awakened will offer to heal you so that you need not suffer the drawbacks associated with this lacking. Their efforts should be discouraged for they do not understand our nature. The absence of this center defines us as what we are and is carried over from lifetime to lifetime. It cannot and should not be "fixed." In this respect, vampirism is a condition of the spirit, and it is the spirit which predisposes the body to physically manifest the characteristics associated with vampirism.

Occasionally damage can be done to the subtle body of another that will partially or completely destroy an energy center. Such damage may be more permanent than the physical flesh, and thus will be carried over from lifetime to lifetime. This damage is most often the result of an accident, yet it produces much the same results as that which we embody.

Those who have been damaged in this way will find that they need to feed. Their subtle bodies can no longer sustain their physical forms, and if life energy is not taken from an outside source, they will suffer debilitating effects associated with the lost or damaged energy center.

Though these are not our children, they are technically of our number. It is our duty to help and guide them in understanding what has happened to them and what this may entail. There is however hope that such individuals will eventually heal on a subtle level, and thus recover from their state of vampirism.

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Our strength and our weakness is life. We depend upon the vital force, for lacking enough of it ourselves, we are forced to glean it from others.

In this we are self-serving and self-preserving, though good and evil cannot be applied to our state. We know what we need, and we know we must take it, sometimes to the detriment of others. This is an unavoidable fact of reality.

We are predators at heart, even though we are physically indistinguishable from our prey. The spirit within us sets us apart. Our perceptions, our passions, and our powers make us strangers among ordinary men. Even if we refuse to act upon our more destructive impulses, we keenly feel the difference between us and those who do not share what we are. No matter how hard we try to blend in, we can never truly belong.

This is a blessing and a curse. The lives we live are fuller and more dynamic than anything most others might imagine. The levels of reality we are privy to make the world a profound and wondrous place. Yet there are few who can share our insights. Thus, we tend to be solitary, feeding alone, rarely interacting with those who would not and could not understand. Our utter separateness drives us to seek out companionship among our own kind for it is here only that we find true acceptance and understanding.

We may find friends and allies among the Awakened, but they can never truly understand what we are and what that means within the context of so many different lives. There are some experiences they can neither accept nor share, and thus there is always something lacking when in their company.

Thus we should always treasure those who are of our nature. They are our companions throughout the many, many long years. Time and again, we will find one another, for the bonds between us are never broken or worn thin.

We can love and hate one another with great passion, yet we are forever loyal to our own.

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We may gain what we need through feeding, drawing in life as we would breath.

When we are the center of attention of a whole group, we may feed upon the emotions of those around us as they are directed toward us. Those involved in the group are unlikely to notice the loss of energy, and oftentimes feeding in this way only increases their focus upon you.

This is an activity many Potentials engage in, though they do not often consciously understand what it is they do. This is one of the main reasons many Potentials are drawn toward the stage. Many become actors, storytellers, musicians or other performers so that they may achieve the kind of focused attention they crave.

For those who have Become, this is a pleasing activity, but rarely satisfies more than the most superficial of needs.

Even when a group is not focused upon us, we may feed generally upon them. No physical contact is necessary: we simply expand our awareness to encompass the group around us as if throwing out a net, or visualize ourselves at the center of a whirlpool, drawing everything in. Thus our energy extends beyond ourselves and, like embracing good friends, we pull bits of everyone about us into ourselves, breathing them deeply.

This is less satisfying than a focused group draw but can sustain us in a time of desperate need when no other option is available. Places with high energy and many emotions are preferable for this activity, and thus we are often drawn to dance halls and clubs. Once again, this manner of feeding is subtle and easily overlooked, and those being fed from are unlikely to notice the loss. High energy places often have enough ambient energy floating loosely in the atmosphere that you are truly taking little from any of the individual people there.

The two above techniques may be focused variably upon a single person for a slightly more intense effect. The individual in question does not have to be aware of your activities, and they do not even have to be close for you to feed from them. With concentration and focus, you can easily reach out across a room and draw off energy from a specific individual. At most, this person will feel a little tired from what you have taken, but most people are so desensitized to the subtle reality that they will pass this off as ordinary fatigue, stress, or too much drink.

Taking from unawakened individuals has its drawbacks, however. Certainly there are more of them, and they are far less likely to notice what you are doing than Awakened individuals. However, they are almost wholly ignorant to the energy that courses through them and they do little or nothing to cultivate this aspect of their spiritual selves, and so the quality of their energy is very poor.

Feeding from the Awakened is far more rewarding, as they cultivate their energy bodies, and so the quality of energy is purer and more intense. However, feeding without permission from the Awakened runs you the risk of getting caught. Many also perceive this as a psychic attack, and your actions will rarely be responded to kindly.

To this end, willing partners are the most advisable as they will not retaliate for anything which they consider an infringement on their person.. Having a willing partner who is Awakened is more fulfilling anyway, since the more feedback you receive from your targets, the more satisfying the drain, especially if they have some awareness of what is happening to them. It is like making love: the best partner is the one who responds to your touch, whose reactions guide you in increasing their experience of the exchange.

Single target, long-distance draws are convenient for establishing a connection to someone in order to draw them closer to you but before it is socially appropriate to engage in actual physical contact.

In general, energy coupled with some strong emotion is more fulfilling than simple energy alone. One of the most intense emotions we can feed upon is fear, but the negative repercussions associated with inspiring this emotion make it inadvisable to pursue. The next most intense emotion is passion or ecstasy, and this can be very fulfilling for both you and your partner. Any emotion that is transformative in its power and depth pleasantly satisfies our needs.

We may also feed upon energy gathered for religious purposes. This will sustain us in a time of need when no other sources are available, though often it is meager fare.

When people gather to worship, they generate a strong force of energy but few, if any of them, ever know how to properly direct it. Thus it curls up like smoke directionlessly through their place of worship or clings around those items which served as the foci for the group's attentions.

Whether we sit in on the actual worship or appear shortly thereafter, we may affect a general draw using the net technique which pulls the undirected energy into ourselves. The objects which were focused upon by the crowd can also be drained of the energy endowed in them, either from a distant, general draw or from the more direct drain of physical contact.

Many find such activities scandalous and unforgivable, but in truth the groups that can be preyed upon in this fashion have little awareness that they have been victimized and suffer not from our predations. The energy of their worship was undirected anyway and would dissipate eventually on its own, having served to benefit no one.

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We can adequately feed from a distance, extending our subtle bodies and our wills beyond the limits of our physical bodies in order to touch the energies of others. Such techniques can be satisfying in their own right, yet we are not solely beings of energy. We are a balance of spirit and matter, as are all things, and so contact with more than just energy-bodies is necessary for us to feel truly satisfied.

Physical contact coupled with that extension of our Selves that creates energy contact is the main method used to feed.

The primary centers for achieving such contact are our hands and our mouths. The hands may tingle when used for this purpose. Our touch at this time is intense, often very cold but also shiveringly pleasant. As we draw forth more energy, the cold gives way to warmth which in turn gives way to heat. The heat is a byproduct of the energy exchange.

In extreme cases, we may leave traces of our feeding, even when feeding solely with our hands. We can draw blood up through the very pores or leave barely discernible bruises at our points of contact.

We draw energy in like breath: this is a controlled breathing technique which encompasses much more than our lungs. Even when the primary focus is our hands or if our target is far removed from us physically, this breathing helps focus our intake of energy. It is one slow, sustained inhalation, almost like smoking a cigarette or sucking air through a very small straw. If done correctly, it will seem that your are breathing in far beyond the capacity of your lungs. Like breath, energy is drawn in, filling us with life and vitality. You will feel it, like a rush, spread through you, tingling down to your fingers and toes. You will achieve an altered state of consciousness while doing this, where body and energy body are both clearly perceived. Time may seem drawn out and distance will be altered. Your perceptions can expand to encompass a whole room, seeing everything inside and out all at once.

Like breath, energy may also be expelled, exhaled into the person you choose to give it to. This secondary function of drawing energy is used in healing. It is the necessary counterbalance to our function of taking energy. We are creatures of balance above all else, and even as we can sap the energy of those around us, so too can we build it up in order to help and heal.

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When we feed, we must take the life energy of others. It cannot be given. It can be offered freely, but still we must do the taking. This is fundamental to the way in which we must process the energy for use ourselves.

When we draw in energy from another, it is transformed through the feeding process into energy we can assimilate and use. If another, however well-meaning, seeks to force energy into us, it will do us little good. The energy must be assimilated to match our own if we are to benefit from it.

It is very difficult for us to assimilate any energy beyond that of life. Others may draw their strength from the earth, the elements, even the stars, but we are bound to life by our lack of it. Some of us are more disconnected from life than others, and this is reflected in what and how much we can feed from in order to sustain ourselves. Few of us can feed from alternate sources, but when we can, it is a blessing which should not be ignored.

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Do not mistake mere blood for life. We feed upon something far subtler.

However, do not be surprised if, in feeding, you taste blood within your mouth, for blood and life are intricately interwoven.

We are creatures of both matter and spirit, and thus we affect others on both of these levels. Blood is the physical substance of life, and so we are bound ever so slightly to this material expression of our spiritual need.

Do not be misled by the juxtaposition of energy and blood. No cut or puncture is necessary for the transfer to occur. Our ways are far subtler than that. As you draw out life, you draw out a minute amount of blood with the life. Even when there is no physical contact between you and your partner, when the draw is deep enough, this will occur.

For this reason, always take care in who you feed from, for a taint in their blood may carry over to you.

Never feed from the ill or diseased. Never feed from those who have drugs or alcohol in their system unless you wish to partake of their intoxication for yourself. The taints in their bodies will transfer over to you. You will know those who are tainted by the sensations you get when near them. You will have an instinctual aversion to touching or getting close to such people. Likewise, your senses will warn you if you attempt to initiate a draw. Much of your awareness of the taint will occur on an unspoken level, so be attentive to your impressions and intuitions.

Given time and careful observation, you will learn to discern these sensations in order to identify the taint. This knowledge, however, may bring you great grief, for there are few left in this world who are not tainted in one manner or another.

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On the body, there are certain centers where energy is concentrated. These have come to be known generally as chakras. We can easily make a connection to a person at any of these centers, bridging the gap between body and energy-body, physical and spiritual. Indeed, these centers are like junctions between the two bodies and one can affect the body on either or both levels simultaneously through the skilled manipulation of these centers.

The function of the chakras are like subtle body organs. Each has a different purpose and affect on the subtle and physical form, but for the most part, they all gather, process, and circulate energy. They have been described as "wheels of light", which is indeed the literal translation of the word chakra, and each one has a distinct frequency at which it resonates energy, keeping it constantly spinning, pulsing, and in motion.

These centers and their usage has been known to cultures from ancient Egypt and before. The energy flowing through these centers is known as prana in Sanskrit. It is chi to the Chinese, ki to the Japanese, the ba or "breath of life" to the Egyptians. The energy has been described as a fluid and has been equated with breath, blood and life by varying cultures. It is the essential stuff of life and it is etheric yet fluid, mutable, and in a constant state of motion. It is the spiritual mercury of the ancient alchemists, the element most crucial to transformation and the creation of the Philosopher's Stone.

Different systems depict these centers at varying points in the body. The Hindu system of Chakras has been most widely accepted by the West, and it depicts a set of seven "wheels of light" which occur in a centralized line throughout the body. The Tibetan system, which may have more purely inherited the ancient wisdom that went before, recognizes only five. These five correspond to five aspects the Egyptians attributed to the human soul. As our heritage is Egyptian and pre-Egyptian, we have chosen their words to describe these centers.

Different systems depict these centers at varying points in the body. The Hindu system of chakras has been most widely accepted by the West, and it depicts a set of seven "wheels of light" which occur in a centralized line throughout the body. The Tibetan system recognizes only five, so it is important to be aware that not all systems agree. We recognize major six centers within the body, and their location and characteristics are as follows:

The first energy center is located at the crown of the head, and is accessible from either crown or forehead. This is often depicted as two different centers, but due to their proximity, these are affected as one. To the Egyptians and those that preceded them, this center was known as the Akh. The Akh is the immortal body, that which contains our undying, Essential Selves. This energy center is the point at which the immortal body crosses over with the physical form.

The next center is located at the throat, and is accessible from the mouth or the sides of the throat over the veins. This is known as the Khu. The Khu is the voice and will of an individual. It is the seat of individual determination and magickal power for it is through the word that our Wills are enacted.

The next center is located above the heart. This is the Ab. It is accessible directly above the heart, between the breasts. The Ab is the center of the physical being, where the physical stuff of life is circulated throughout the organism. It is a very powerful center of raw life energy. The Ab is the dynamic opposite of the Ba. Where the Ab is the center of the physical life-force, with the heart and all its pumping blood, the Ba is the center of the spiritual life-force and serves much the same function as the heart with circulating and directing the subtle life energies.

When doing energy work or doing visualizations, it will seem that the center of power is located in the chest, just beneath the very base of the sternum. This is the Ka. It is the dynamic opposite of the Akh, so that where the Akh is the immortal, higher soul, the Ka is the body-soul, tied to the needs and hungers of the physical form. It is here that a strong sensation can be felt during feeding. The Ka is interlinked with the very capacity to feed. It is the seat of the spiritual hunger, as well as the bridge between the subtle energy and the point in the body where this is drawn in and made useful.

The Ba is located in the belly, just beneath the navel. The Ba is the center of the spiritual life force. By its action, it sustains the life of the subtle body and connects the subtle body to the physical, transitory form. It is further the tie which connects us to the wheel of death and rebirth. Altering or severing this center completely will affect the way in which the soul travels through the wheel. Most other energy traditions such as Yoga describe this center as the seat of the subtle power. It is this area just beneath the navel that a Yogi is trained to focus on when gathering power. For us, this center is significantly altered. Many of us are disconnected from it partially or entirely. Our center, as a result, is higher, and lies in the Ka.

Finally, there is a center at the root. This is the Min, the sexual force. This center is most completely tied to the body and is the dynamic opposite of the Khu. Where the Khu is the word and will, this is the instinct, that which has the power to rob us of our wills and transform us into beasts. This center is accessible through the genitals or just inside the joint of the thigh.

Minor centers exist at the wrists, the insides of the elbows and the backs of the knees. The palms of the hands and the soles of the feet also contain minor chakras. Any of these can be used to create a connection, although we are hardly bound to reach out to another's energy body through these sites. Any physical contact will do, and as mentioned before, even physical contact is not necessary to feed.

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Our energy actually pierces the subtle body of our partner and penetrates it, drawing energy out as if through a straw. Afterward, a wound is left in the aura of the partner, though this will close on its own in a few days. It can sometimes be echoed in the flesh in the form of a small rounded bruise. In the case of long-standing partners, the wound can become a permanent weak spot in the aura through which we can easily penetrate and gain access to their energy.

Generally speaking, feeding is not harmful to the partner. They have a connection to the universal force; this will replenish them in time, usually overnight. Most partners will just feel a little tired and fuzzy-headed after being fed from. Many have described it like a mild drug, something that is pleasantly mellowing. Some experience euphoria during feeding and feel they are riding intense waves of pleasure. Others can achieve an altered state of consciousness with intense dream-like visions.

Feeding partners may be a little hypersensitive to bright light afterwards and they may experience a sudden feeling of cold. They may be a little more tired than usual the next morning, and they may have a headache that is much like a hangover. However, under ordinary circumstances, these are the most severe side affects feeding will produce in a partner.

Some caution should be used when feeding from those who are not accustomed to it, however. If fed from too quickly or too deeply, the partner may experience difficulty in breathing. Irregularities in the heartbeat may follow. The partner's body will tingle all over, though this may quickly give way to feelings of numbness and cold. Some find this pleasant. To others, it is alarming. It may become very difficult for the person to move and the limbs will feel heavy and uncoordinated. In very extreme cases, the partner will experience a general depression of the entire sympathetic nervous system. This includes lowered body temperature, lowered blood pressure, slowed heart-rate, and a general lassitude which may manifest itself in extreme cases as an all-over muscular weakness and trembling or partial paralysis.

When feed from extremely deeply, it is almost guaranteed that a partner will partially or completely lose consciousness. Do not panic if this occurs. Make certain that they are in no immediate danger, and if they seem to be breathing all right, just let them sleep it off. With their connection to the universal life force, there is very little permanent damage you can do to someone by overfeeding, so long as you do not make it a habit to do so.

Consistent overfeeding will evoke in the partner symptoms similar to those which we experience during periods of starvation. The continual shortage of energy will begin to tax the immune system. They will be tired all the time, sickly and weak. They may sleep a great deal, or they may find themselves unable to actually sleep despite their overwhelming lethargy. Putting constant demands upon one partner will eventually put them in a position where their system can no longer compensate for the loss of energy fast enough to meet your needs. This is why it is always wise to have at least one other reliable source which you can feed from. The best strategy to keep you and all those close to you healthy is to have two or three partners which you feed from, rotating through them so that no single one of them must bear the full weight of your needs.

A draw can be enacted in conjunction with tantric magick. Your primary contact is made at the mouth or the throat, and a tendril is inserted into the subtle body of your partner. Through intense visualization, this tendril is guided down through your partner's subtle body to the root chakra. Here the Kundalini energy that is so crucial to Tantra lies coiled. You can grasp onto the Kundalini energy and manually pull it up through each successive chakra. Draw in only a little during this process until the drawing up of the energy is complete. Once you have brought the Kundalini through all the chakras to your primary point of contact, you will have generated an immense amount of energy from which both yourself and your partner can benefit. You and your partner will sense something like an explosion of light and energy within yourselves, followed immediately by a bursting sensation as if you had just been pushed through some barrier. This will consummate in a powerful sense of climax on the subtle level.

Feeding in this manner is very productive, as it serves to energize both yourself and your partner. Your partner will almost invariably experience a prolonged and impressive orgasm, and one may feed upon the torrent of energy that results from the climax to increase mutual stimulation. It is almost impossible to exhaust a partner when feeding from the root: whereas prolonged or deep feeding from any of the other major energy centers can cause trembling, weakness, dizziness, and an overall depression of the system, feeding from the root seems to only increase that which you feed upon. The partner, after recovering from the intensity of the drain is almost always energized and while they still feel the effects of physical exhaustion, they are driven by a fevered desire that can sustain them for hours. The process is very difficult to master, however, and if the coil of Kundalini energy slips from your grasp, you will simply end up initiating a deep feed from all the chakras in succession.

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Remember, we can feed through a touch, but our spirits extend far beyond the limits of our body. Long-distance draws that are just as intimate and intense as feeding flesh to flesh can be achieved.

When you are starved for energy and no opportunity to adequately sate your needs has arrived, you may find that you will send yourself out in dreams. This is much like astral travel, although it is largely an unconscious activity. You will dream of someone close to you. This can be a family member, a good friend, a current or a former lover. This person need not be located physically close to you, as the subtle reality does not know distance as we know it in the physical world. Your body may be confined to your bedroom, yet your dream-self may wander hundreds and even thousands of miles away.

The dream will seem unusually vivid. It is very likely that the dream will also be lucid, and you will realize at least in part that you are dreaming, but that this other person is somehow actually present in the dream. In the course of the dream, you will have an exchange with the target person. The exchange can be overtly vampiric, or it may manifest itself in an erotic context. The person who you have visited this way will wake up tired and worn just as if you had fed directly from them that night. Often, they will recall the dream as well, and if it is possible to compare experiences, you will find that certain elements of the dreamscape were shared by both people involved in the dream.

With practice, you will come to be able to distinguish between your ordinary dreams and these dream-walking experiences. The process does not always have to be unconscious. You may gain mastery over this ability and dream-walk at will. However it remains a survival technique inherent in the vampiric nature. Therefore, especially in periods of dire need, you may find your soul wandering regardless of your personal control.

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In crowds or when performing a general, long-distance drain, it is nearly impossible to assure that your victims are willing. When physical contact is not involved or when the drain is weak enough, such consent is unnecessary.

However, when you feed deeply upon someone, especially through physical contact, it is advisable that you make certain your partner understands what is being done to them so that they know the risks and cannot blame you for invading their person. Lying and dissembling to someone you must be so close to will only make their reaction to you all the more violent when and if they discover your true nature.

This requires us to choose our long-term feeding partners with great care. Casual feeding is discouraged as too many partners may gossip and eventually learn what you have done to them by comparing notes. Two or three regular partners are suggested, so you may establish strong links with them and rotate them as the need arises, so no single one is exhausted by your demands.

Our partners ideally must be awake enough to understand and accept what we are or else our explanation of what we do to them will be met only with scorn and incredulity. You must carefully build a relationship up with a prospective partner, sounding out their beliefs until you feel comfortable in entrusting them with the truth of what you are. If you cannot feel comfortable in telling them what you do to them, you should not use them as a regular feeding partner.

We must select partners who are emotionally strong and mentally stable. Those who are versed in the arts of the subtle reality are preferable. The bond that we must share with someone in order to feed deeply from them is profound indeed. It encompasses all levels of being, physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional, and it can be more than most ordinary folk can safely handle. Our lovemaking and often even our casual contact touches them profoundly on a more than physical level. Even for those who have had some experience with the subtle reality, this is something they have probably never experienced before and will never experience with any partner save ourselves.

For some, this is too much. It ruins them for everything else. They can easily become obsessed with us, and especially they will become obsessed with what we can do to them. Such an obsession is unhealthy for them as well as for us. Thus, we must give our love carefully and diligently watch those whom we are close to for signs of instability so we may protect them from the destruction our nature inevitably wreaks.

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We do not bring only pain and loss to those we feed upon. The experience of our touch on levels far deeper than the physical can be transformative to those strong enough to bear up under it.

Let others condemn us, call us evil or perverse, but let them never speak of love or an understanding of it. For we love and share with one another in way so profound that those not of our number have never imagined it before. Ours is the kissing of souls, unburdened by the limitations of physical flesh. Ours is the deepest knowing of another soul. Ours is the truest communion.

Those we feed upon experience waves of ecstasy, like riding the crest of a prolonged orgasm, though one which is not located specifically in the flesh.

Our draw is like a drug. Our partners are overcome with a soothing sensation, until they relax to their very core. They feel they are drifting in an ocean of pleasure. They are filled with a golden, melting sensation that is almost narcotic in its intensity. Our draw can bring visions and it can bring rest and sleep even to the most restless of souls. The pleasure we give is not wholly physical but occurs upon all levels, and serves to bridge the space between these levels of existence in our partners, raising them up into an apotheosis of Self. Our touch is mystical, and it changes our partners profoundly on levels they may only have imagined.

Like a drug, however, our draw can be addictive. We understand too well the overpowering desire our need inspires in us, but our partners can also come to be reliant upon the pleasure that we give to them. They can become trained to be responsive to our touch, and their physical and subtle bodies can grow so accustomed to our drain that they overproduce vitality in anticipation of having it drained away. Thus we must always take care in how often we feed from our partners, and try to guard against obsessing them with the pleasure that we give to the exclusion of all else.

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Each time you feed from someone, you forge a subtle link with them. This link is like an astral tentacle or a silver cord. It connects your subtle body to their subtle body. Every time you feed from this person after forging the initial link, you make this link stronger and deeper. The link can also be strengthened simply through casual contact with the person, so whenever you come together socially the link is reinforced bit by bit.

This link serves as a constant connection to the person. Through it, you can sense where they are, what their emotional state is, and if they are in any physical danger or distress. The deeper and stronger the link, the easier it is to travel down it in order to sense the person on the other end.

Through a strong link, you will be able to pick up stray thoughts in addition to emotions. You will also be able to implant suggestions and emotions. By tugging gently on the link with the person, you can make them think of you and draw them to you.

With concentration, an especially strong link will enable you to extend your awareness completely enough so your are able to perceive through the other person's senses.

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Once a link is forged with someone, you may use the link to feed from them at a distance. The deeper and stronger the link, the more efficiently you can draw energy through it. With most such connections, you do not even have to concentrate to draw forth from the person. To a certain extent, you are in constant contact with that person, and while the energy you gain from them passively is only minimal, a number of such connections with various people will help sustain you in times of need as well as prolong the time you can go between more active feedings.

If you choose to actively drain through a link, there are two good ways of doing so.

First, you can simply concentrate on pulling some of that person's energy to you through the link. Center yourself. Focus on your connection to that person, then visualize the person clearly. Visualize yourself reaching out and touching them to feed then breathe in, drawing in energy as well as breath.

You may also extend yourself down through the link, initiating a deeper contact with their energy body as you do so. This is a more direct way of feeding from those you have subtle connections to, and it is also much more obvious to the person on the other end. As before, concentrate upon the person and get a clear image of them in your head. Then focus on extending your subtle senses to that person, much as you would if you chose to see through their eyes or perceive their emotional state.

When you are successfully focused on them, it will seem you are in two places at once. Part of you will be sitting or standing wherever your body is, and you will retain some awareness of these surroundings. Part of you will be focused entirely upon the other person and will feel as if it occupies the same space that they do, or is somehow enveloped around them. Once this has occurred, you may initiate a drain, pulling their energy in through your breath as you had done before.

The target of such a drain is likely to become aware of it at least on a semi-conscious level. They may suddenly find themselves thinking of you for no reason they can explain. They may smell your perfume or catch sight of you out of the corner of their eye. If they are asleep, they may see you enter their dreams. This is a lot like conscious dream-walking. The technique behind it is largely the same. Sensitive targets may actually perceive your presence, seeing you, ghost-like, hovering somewhere nearby.

Of all the things we can do, this has historically frightened people the most. It serves as the basis for all the myths and legends of demonic and vampiric nightly visitations. As such, it is the most revealing of our nature and it will quickly expose you to those it happens to. For this reason, this skill should be exercised cautiously and with great discretion.

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