An Overview of Real Vampire Origin Theories

Written by: SphynxCatVP
Link to original: http://sphynxcatvp.nocturna.org/faq/most-origins.html

Inevitably, someone new to the community will come looking for information, and among the questions asked will be something like one of the following:

  1. What causes vampirism?
  2. Is there a purpose or a reason for it?

Unfortunately, there is no definitive answer that fits everyone - but there are a LOT of theories out there in cyberspace, and some of them will seem less logical than others - which one(s) of course will depend on your personal views. What follows is a brief summary of several popular theories, broken down by base-type. I am not going into serious detail of any of the theories (much less how the vampiric state is supposed to be "spread", if at all), my intent here is to give only a general overview.

I am NOT saying that any of them are "the ONLY answer" (although I will, of course, have my opinions on a few, and I'm sure you will too) - there are enough other groups out there that are more than willing to debate the "truth" of one or more of these theories:

Energy-based theories

  1. Chakra or Energy Body Malfunction or Damage
  2. Energy Addiction
  3. Excessive Use of Personal Energy
  4. Extra-planar Non-Physical Creatures

Physical-based theories

  1. Evolution / Mutation / Genetics
  2. Unusual Ancestry
  3. Virus
  4. Vitamin Deficiency

Spiritual-based theories

  1. Cursed By A Deity
  2. "For A Higher Purpose" / Karma
  3. Imperfect "Universal Connection"
  4. Otherkin Soul from Elsewhere

Energy-based theories

Chakra or energy body malfunction/damage/alteration

This theory proposes that there is something missing, malfunctioning or damaged, thus creating a "leak" or "hole" in the energy body - like having a slow leak on a tire. Thus, the psi/blood feeding somehow replaces the lost energy, even if it's only for a short time. Damage to the energetic body is not always something a person is born with - it can happen later in life for whatever reason (deliberate psychic/psi attack, overextending one's own abilities, etc.) and may or may not heal as time goes on. One such alteration is described by House Kheperu's origin theory.

Energy Addiction

This theory is that taking in energy gives a "rush" that the person wants to feel again and again. They may be mistaking an apparent improvement in their physical condition with what turns out to be just a simple boost in energy. In this case, the person is not truly *lacking* in the required energy, as most psivamps tend to be, but just wants MORE than what they already have.

Excessive use of personal energy

This theory says that the person needs to feed on blood/energy because they are just using far too much of their own personal energy for whatever purpose (outrageous shielding methods, etc.) This is different from the "slow leak" idea because if the person WASN'T expending the extra energy, they wouldn't need to take in any extra energy to replace it.

Extra-planar non-physical creatures

According to this theory, non-physical creatures from this or an alternate plane (for example, the astral plane) wander along and "move in" to a person's body. This may or may not result in a potentially symbiotic relationship - the person may receive beneficial or negative characteristics as a result of this - and the wandering creature ends up with a home and perhaps a food supply, at least until it leaves on it's own or is forced out. One example of something following this theory (presented with quite a bit more negativity) is Shadowalker's Essay.

Physical-based theories

Evolution/Mutation/Genetics

This theory suggests that it's something "in the genes", because in some people's families there is more than one vampiric family member. If the gene is heterozygous, it would have to be recessive - only showing up under the right circumstances. However, this would tend to support anyone showing these traits to have the exact same traits. Not everyone does. Thus, what what would seem to fit the genetics theory better is something heterozygous (incomplete dominance of a specific trait) or perhaps co-dominant (showing characteristics that would otherwise be both recessive AND dominant.) Evolution? Debatable - who's place is it to say what is more "evolved" than something else? Nature's experimentation? Random mutation? Who knows...

Unusual ancestry

This theory is simaler to the idea of evolution/mutation, but this one deals strictly with a particularly unusual event or person within the family ancestry. The ancester could be the product of a seemingly mythological union, such as Merovech (or Merowig) who's mother, according to legend, encountered an aquatic creature while swimming - the implication being that the aquatic creature is Merovech's real father. (This is the basis for House Quinotaur's own origin theory.) Other variations of this theory include being decended from Lilith (of Jewish mythology), or decended from one or more of the Nephilim (fallen angels in Christian mythology) or even Cain (popularized by White Wolf in their Book of Nod).

Virus/Disease/Physical Disorder

One of the more popular theories, this promotes the idea that vampirism is caused by some kind of contagious virus, and usually the K-17 and V-5 names are mentioned - the K-17 was part of promotional material for an Australian movie called Rein in Darkness, and V-5 (referred to verbally as "code five" but displayed as "V5") was part of promotional material for the BBC television show Ultraviolet. Another virus idea that sometimes comes up is that of a more general retrovirus (likely an offshoot of the K17 thing), because a retrovirus is supposed to be able to modify selected snippets of DNA. Other ideas include particular diseases or disorders - something that crops up later in life may have environmental triggers.

Vitamin (or other nutritional) deficiency

Because some symptoms (feeling tired, "weird cravings", etc.) can be a result of a lack of one or more nutrients, this theory proposes that some or even all of the vampiric negatives can be minimized or eliminated by the addition of sufficient supplemental vitamins to the diet. For example, it IS known that a deficiency of b-vitamins can result in memory loss, reduced attention span, irritability, depression, apathy, forgetfulness and hostility, among a variety of other symptoms. (This information pulled from a section of this article on Doctor Yourself.)

Electrolytes can also be a nutritional factor; you can see one article on that from Mistress Emilly. Some evidence of electrolytes can be seen in a preference for salty or vinegary foods, although some vampires seem to have an extra-large sweet tooth instead.

To some degree, vitamins/nutrients can also play a part in the genetics of certain issues - lack of key nutrients (folic acid for Spina Bifida, for example) during the prenatal growth period can be a result of an individual's poor diet, or the result of family/cultural customs - sharing the same choices or sources in food or drink, for example, or typically NOT eating certain foods that are high in the required nutrients.

Spiritual-based theories

Cursed by a deity

This might seem to fall under the "for a higher purpose" section, except this theory proposes that it is done with negative intent. This is a belief that a more religious (not necessarily Christian, but often some sort of more well-known religion) - perhaps "fundamentalist" - person might hold, believing that vampirism goes against their faith's teachings. Such a belief usually means that the person ends up fighting it for most or all of their life in order to prevent the "curse" from taking over.

"For a higher purpose" / Karma

This theory is that a higher being (god, demigod, deity-like figure, who knows - it's part of the individual/group's belief system) has given these characteristics. Perhaps it's a simple case of "things happen for a reason", whether it's the deity's choice or spiritual karma, and thus believe that there may be an "ultimate" or "higher purpose" for a person having vampiric characteristics that is yet to be determined. This takes a certain amount of faith-based or spiritual belief, which not everybody shares.

Otherkin soul from elsewhere

Whether it's alternate dimensions, "star children", or even future/past, some propose the theory that the difference between vampires (and other types of kin) and non-kin stem from having a soul that comes from Someplace Else. Characteristics such as the vampire's need for blood/energy are usually explained by the soul residing in a body that just doesn't "fit" the soul that is currently living in it.

Imperfect "Universal" Connection

With this theory, the person is trying (often vainly) to reconnect with a "universal connection to everything". The constant energy leeching comes from trying to re-connect to something that they feel they lost, somehow. Depending on how you work with energy, this might be a function of what typically thought of as the 7th (or crown) cshakra in the head, which deals with higher consciousness, wisdom, inspiration and so on.

Not everything in this list can be tested for (the idea of "deity curse" being an example) and others wouldn't normally be tested for (something like a vitamin deficiency issue - what would be a deficiency in an particular individual - due to genetics, dietary choices, side effects of prescription medications, etc. - wouldn't necessarily fall below modern medicine's "accepted" levels on paper) and would need a larger sample group than just a few random people in one or more locations to make a final determination.