Archive ⋙ Reviews
"The Vampire Bible", reviewed
Vampires are real! And this time, they’re not sparkly, just borderline rapey!
In all fairness, I don’t remember where I got this book. I was cleaning out my Downloads folder on my phone one day, and I came across it. Maybe it was from /fringe/, but if it was, I think it would have been in the /fringe/ library. Maybe it was from a Neocities site, perused in the dark of the night, awful layout quickly forgotten. It takes the form of a sparsely-formatted PDF with no proper cover. As a courtesy, instead of uploading the awful copy I had to slug through, I’ve found a better-formatted one on archive.org if you want to read along.
Already there’s a problem: on the first page of the archive.org version, the author warns that, if you didn’t buy it directly from the website, you won’t be able to successfully carry out the instructions within. Having to pay money in order to achieve enlightenment? Sounds pretty cultish, right?
It gets worse from here. So much worse.
1: The Vampire Creed
This is a blatant lie, as we’ll see later, but it’s a good thing to live by nonetheless.
Do you? Do you really?
Given that I’m an anarchist, I’m gonna have to opt out of that. I bow down to no one, certainly not one who would use religious rhetoric to try to shackle my mind.
Most of these that actually posit some kind of value appear to be wake rhetoric. Unfortunately, this is the only part of the book that actually encourages independence from gods or other kinds of higher deities, as we will see later.
2: The Dragon Speaks
There’s a dragon inside of you! No, this isn’t The Duality of Mankind. This is just a metaphor. For what is never explained (in this book; Revelations, a separate work, unpacks it as a metaphor for what’s essentially the soul). Is it your higher self? Is this something from the Kybalion, where we are all small parts of THE ALL, and this dragon is THE ALL making their presence known? Is it a separate god using you as a vessel?
If I were still wandering through my anhedonic period, I think I would have been alright with being a vessel. But that would have left me critically in danger of being emotionally manipulated to do things I otherwise would have never done. And as we can see in the next section, a mentally hurting person in the hands of a crafty cult leader can become quite the danger to themselves and others.
3: The Calling of the Undead Gods
Here is where the sleep rhetoric starts.
Achieving the Vampiric Condition requires attracting and obtaining Communion with the Undead, those Vampires who no longer walk in flesh but are astrally free.
The whole point of this section is as follows: humans are meant to be the prey of so-called “vampires” who feed on their energies. But in order to achieve the vampiric condition, one must commune with the Undead, otherwise referred to as the “Elder Gods”, who are a sort of formless pantheon of deities who must be appeased and sacrificed to (with one’s own energy). One must take care not to “offend” them by dressing in dark clothing and refusing to let any other human being enter the chamber in which one performs their rituals. Curiously enough, one is allowed to wear iron, but only if they’ve been allowed into the priesthood. (How exactly one gets into the priesthood isn’t explained in this book.) Rituals must take place in a specific fashion with certain items with no regards as to whether or not the person can actually procure them in a safe fashion. (Why would the Elder Gods care if you get harmed in the process if they can just “ascend” you into the astral?)
The actual act of Vampiric Communion involves stating to the Undead that you now see yourself as a predator to humans, that the people around you are now nothing more to you than cattle to be fed upon. This is so hilariously deumanizing, not to mention cultish, that I find it… difficult to put into words. But I shall try nonetheless. Getting you to see yourself as separate from other people is often how cults ensnare people and keep them inside their group. Compounded with the discouragement of skepticism, which you’re apparently supposed to leave at the door of your chamber, why would any predator want to listen to the opinions of their prey, if an honest offering for help back into reality could just be waved off as someone trying to dissuade you from achieving eternal life?
Here again comes another opportunity to manipulate a person with anxiety. You don’t want to be a prey, do you? You want to be safe from the monsters that lurk in the night, don’t you?
Offerings during the ritual are made by… breathing, with “no thought of personal survival”. If you die, so what, according to these teachings? Put your life on the line for a dubious possibility of achieving transcendance. Of course, breathing normally can’t actually kill you, just make you dizzy (and maybe pass out) if you do it too slowly or quickly.
How embarrassing it would be, to pass out thinking you’re dying for the benefit of the Undead, and then wake up minutes or hours later with nothing to show for it but an aching head.
4: The Secret Methods of Vampirism
Vampirism is the taking of the lifeforce of the human to empower the Vampire. In its essence, Vampirism is merely a more refined form of eating.
The message of this section is that humans both exist on the physical plane and the astral plane, and when vampires feed on humans, what they are doing is taking energy from a human’s astral form. Thus, humans are at their most potent when they are sleeping or otherwise unconscious, as that is when the astral is detached from the physical. Hence, in order to fully achieve vampirism, one must learn how to astral project on will. Apparently, this requires the help of the Undead.
For one to actually consume another human’s lifeforce, their astral bodies must be touching. In other words, touching people while they’re asleep without their knowledge or prior consent is apparently completely fine. In order to draw it in, again, requires… breathing.
Maybe the Temple of the Vampire is just a thinly-veiled front for the Breathing Fan Club.
5: The Predator of Humans
Here is where the bulk of the dehumanization of others comes in. According to this section, because the natural food chain involves predator animals eating prey animals, and said prey animals sometimes give up fighting when they’ve been caught, this somehow justifies humans preying on other humans. Thus, in order to “become” a vampire, one must train themselves to override their capacity for compassion for other people and just see all the other people in the world as food for themselves, with no consideration for the lives or feelings or wishes or achievements or anything else that separates the human race from the rest of the animal kingdom. Anybody who questions this is a hypocrite since humans are omnivores that eat animal flesh and plants. This seems like a good point at first, since rarely do humans consider animals on the same level as them (a point which has put many an animal rights activist up in arms), but the difference is that one cannot sustain themselves on “lifeforce” alone; wannabe vampires following these guides will probably nod their heads in agreement and then go on to eat the omnivore foods that they had condemned moments prior when their human stomaches growl.
Are all adherents of the Temple of the Vampire breatharians? I would be wary of a creed that has blood on its hands.
And any rewards for following these rituals can only be fully realized in the afterlife, where one does not need to eat meat or plants anymore because their physical body is dead. Hence, sleep rhetoric.
The second part of this section puts forth the outlandish notion that overpopulation was a conscious “carefully engineered intervention in human affairs” so that vampires could have more humans to feed off on. I mean, fuck the notion that increasing human population is due to advancements in medicine, or a decline in the death rate, or a lack of knowledge about family planning in developing countries! It was the vampires. It was all thanks to the vampires.
Of course, any skepticism is met with another classic red flag of cults, the order to keep doctrine a secret. Here it is called “The Truth of the Lie”, where an adherent is expected to keep the nature of vampires a secret from all others under threat of having the possibility of eternal life revoked by the Undead. This is accomplished by encouraging others to only see vampires in the light pop culture shines on them, as “only folklore and superstitious fantasy”.
I mean, at least the Bible is free and open! Hell, there are more versions of it than I have fingers and toes! All of its flaws are exposed out in the open for everyone to see, and it’s been debunked ad nauseam. Christians are happy to share their faith with you, as probably do adherents of every other major world religion.
You say you seek to find the truth, but you refuse to let others shine a light on your works so that they may help as well. You refuse the whole of evolutionary science, the scientific consensus so far, for your own fantasies. Believe what you want to believe- I know I have my own lion’s share of idiosyncrasies- but an honest search for the truth and a hidden belief are two mutually exclusive things. You can’t have both.
What kind of clown world do we live in where I can unironically find something to respect Christianity for?
The only redeemable part of this section is the last few sentences:
Begin now, today, this very moment to weed out the habits of thinking like prey, a simpering, self-depricating victim of the real world.
I will admit: I’m something of an egoist myself. The world is mine. But I know that I wouldn’t like it if someone else claimed what was mine as theirs either, and so I follow the non-aggression principle. I act as I please, but I do not initiate force against another person or their property. This book is a heavily egoist and individualist work, which is rare for a religious text, and I respect that. But it’s missing that anarchist tinge that’s essential for any effective individualism: the beginning of every book published by the man behind the Vampire Temple tells the adherent to “refrain from any and all criminal acts as defined by their respective governments”. What’s the point of being an individual if you’re just going to roll over and accept the rule of those who claim authority over you, who would impose themselves on you? I am my own ruler, and I’ll decide for myself what I believe and what I value, thank you very much.
6: Shurpu Kishpu The Book Of Dreaming
A cursory search for the title of this section brings up several pages of lyrics websites for a band I’ve never heard of. Filtering out the lyrics websites brings up a handful of websites which seem to mirror parts of this section, if not the whole thing, word-for-word. Is everybody just copy-pasting from each other?
The summary of this section: humans, when they die, actually don’t die right away. Their physical body dies, and then their astral body dies soon after. Vampires apparently don’t suffer the second death. Nothing is real, and these teachings must be followed to the letter for all of one’s life lest they lose their chance at immortality. Controlling dreams, or at least becoming lucid in them, are the key to acquiring powers like telekinesis, never mind that everything about that violates the laws of physics. Only vampires have any worth, and humans are “filled with useless trivia and superstitious nonsense”.
7: The Coming Apocalypse
One who came across this section as a standalone piece of writing instead of joined to the rest of this book would be forgiven for thinking that this was some bizarre creation myth written in high school. According to this section, everything that has ever happened in human history was because vampires willed it so, and humans made the leap from hunter-gatherer society to agriculture because vampires wanted more people to live on the earth as their cattle. The Renegades, a group of vampires who refused to take advantage of their fellow humans, rebelled, and a war ensued. Groups of humans were drank from to death in “harvests”. Now, apparently, as overpopulation ravages the planet, we approach a “final harvest”, a massive culling where the Undead will “return” to the earth and vampires will openly rule again.
Curiously enough, the official website for the Temple of the Vampire, which made and published this book, often crashes the Wayback Machine. Either I get a blank page or an infinite redirect.
Thankfully, archive.is still works most of the time, so I can show you how, like Systemspace, this whole thing reeks of a plot to harm mentally ill people and dupe them out of their money.
Despite the third chapter, which describes the rituals, allowing for solitary worship and communion with the Undead, the website states that membership requires paying a whopping two hundred dollars annually for a basic subscription. In exchange, the fledgling member receives… discounts to buy more stuff. And the stuff on the shop, even with the discount, isn’t cheap: the first Bible, which this page reviews, is still forty dollars with the discount. And there are still five more books that one is expected to buy before one is considered fully enlightened! (They’re all free on archive.org.)
And you’re not allowed to critique any of them, because the membership states:
By subscribing as a Basic Temple Member you promise to refrain from criminal activity, physical blood drinking, and discussing the Temple with the public.
Shut up and swallow our teachings wholesale, or speak out and risk eternal death.
Any creed that would punish dissent with death is no better than the worst of totalitarian regimes.
I refuse to see the people I love as mere animals, and I refuse to be “prey” to those who would throw away their waking lives for nothing more than an ego trip. I reject the legend. I opt out.