Modern Vampires and the Black Veil

Modern Vampires and The Black Veil

By Steve Stone

Once upon a time the word Vampire was the description of a beast.  An undead ghost or a horrid beastly monster.  FIction of the 20th century changed  the vampire from the bloodthirsty  abomination to a tragic and romantic figure.  Where the old beliefs made people kill suspected vampires, modern mindset is to try to help and feel sorry for vampires. 

Is it any wonder that a new counterculture has arisen?  The Sanguinary Society and other groups have created “the Black Veil.”  The black veil is a code of conduct for modern day human vampires.  This creates the question , what is a human vampire?   Quite simply , a human vampire is a person who drinks the blood or spirit from others for pleasure or other reasons.

The modern day human vampires are divided in 2  distinct types.  The first type is the sanguine vampires; the blood drinkers.  The second is the spirit or energy vampire.  Sanguine vampires are by far the most well known.  The most often seen sanguine vampires are erotic sanguinarians.  These are individuals who share blood in an erotic manner.  Blood letting may be part of sex, or part of a ritualistic act leading to sex or personal intimacy.  

Below is a copy of the black veil,  the modern vampire’s  rules of behavior.

(All text below is from the
© 1999, The Sanguinary Society / Endless Night Productions

The "Black Veil" is a code of vampyre etiquette developed by and for the members of the Sanguinary Society. It is based on common sense and a collected from years of experience. Many Societies and Households have their own versions of this mixture of philosophy and ethics. It is the job of a sire to teach the Black Veil to their childe as part of them becoming Calmae.

Treat others with respect and consideration at all times. Get to know them as you would in any other social situation.

It is disgraceful for an individual to represent the scene to any media organization that would exploit and take advantage of the scene. In addition exhibit any behavior which might threaten the community as a whole, such as attracting negative media exposure or the interest of fundamentalist religious groups.

Honor thy elders, it is proper bow to them or more formal greeting as one would nobility. They are to be addressed as Sire, Milord or Milady at havens and society functions.

Do not approach, make advances on or touch anyone's thralls or children without permission. If you wish to move on someone's kitra (vampyres lover / soul mate) ask permission from both members of the relationship in a polite manner.

First names and pseudonyms usually are used within the scene. Everyone's personal identity is confidential, so avoid using last (or real) names in meetings and pseudonyms in scene settings.

Bloodletting and or blood drinking is not considered proper in a haven or publicly, nor is drinking from unwilling individuals.

During Court, fledglings are to be seen and not heard.

When greeting another sanguine it is proper to employ the sanguine greeting (which varies from scene to scene). Most generally involved the one of lesser notoriety initiating an exchange of kisses on the back of each hand.

Vampyres are ladies and gentlemen; the vampyre aesthetic commonly incorporates traditions past eras and the courtly elements of respect between individuals and the genders. Honor and Chivalry are expected to be carried out as if we grew up with such traditions.

Hospitality is one of the most important things for vampyres, try and make your home or haven open to those from other cities, as long as they respect your local traditions and customs. Honor the traditions and customs of the locals of any new domain you enter, you may learn a great deal.

Everyone's opinion is valid, although it might differ from ones own. Honor someone else's opinion as new knowledge and do not condemn it.

The second Black Veil. © Copyright 1998 - Present, by Michelle Belanger and Father Todd. states the following

This lifestyle is private and sacred. Respect it as such. Do not make a sideshow of yourself. We do not have to prove ourselves to anyone. Appearing on public TV to tell the world that you drink blood is useless attention-getting. It gets a negative reaction for the whole community. Our place is in the shadows; our greatest protection from small-minded humanity is the fact that they do not believe we exist. Someday they may be ready for us to reveal ourselves to them, but that time is not now.
Do not hide from your nature, but never show it off to those who won't understand.

Our paths are many, even though the journey we are on is essentially the same. No single one of us has all the answers to who and what we are. Respect everyone's personal views and practices. We cannot let petty differences of ideology prevent us from maintaining a unified community; there are enough who would attack us from the outside.
Our diversity is our strength. Let our differences in viewpoint enrich us but never divide us amongst ourselves.

Use sense when indulging your nature. Do not flaunt what you are in public places. Feed in private and make certain your donors will be discrete about what happens between you. Donors who create rumors and gossip about us are more harm than they're worth. If you engage in blood-letting, put safety and caution above all other things. Blood-born diseases are a very real thing, and we cannot risk endangering ourselves or others through irresponsibility. Screen donors carefully, making certain they are in good health both mentally and physically.
Never overindulge or get careless. The safety of the entire community rests upon each member's caution.

We cannot and should not deny the darkness within. Yet we should not allow it to control us. If our beast or shadow or darkside is given too much sway, it clouds our judgement, making us a danger even to those we love. Never indulge in pointless violence. Never bring willful harm to those who sustain you. Never feed only for the sake of feeding, and never give over to mindless bloodlust.
We are not monsters: we are capable of rational thought and self-control. Celebrate the darkness and let it empower you, but never let it enslave your will.

Live your life as an example to others in the community. We are privileged to be what we are, but power should be accompanied by responsibility and dignity. Explore and make use of your vampire nature, but keep it in balance with material demands. Remember: we may be vampires, but we are still a part of this world. We must live lives like everyone else here: holding jobs, keeping homes, and getting along with our neighbors.
Being what we are is not an excuse to not participate in this reality. Rather, it is an obligation to make it a better place for us to be.

We are, all of us, a family, and like all families, various members will not always get along. However, respect the greater community when having your disputes. Do not let your individual problems bring emotional strife to the family as a whole. Settle your differences quietly among one another, only seeking out an elder's aid in mediation when no other solution seems possible. Never bring your private disputes into public places and never draw other family members into the issue by forcing them to take sides.
Like any normal family, we should always make an effort to present a stable and unified face to the rest of the world even when things are not perfect between us.

Our havens are safeplaces where everyone in the community can come to socialize. There are also often public places where we are likely to encounter people who don't understand our ways. We should respect the patrons of these places as we should also respect the owners of the establishments and always be discrete in our behavior. We should never bring private disputes into a haven. We should never initiate violence in a haven. And we should never do or bring anything illegal into a haven, as this reflects badly upon the community as a whole.
The haven is the hub of the whole community, and we should respect it as such, supporting it without business and working to improve its name in the community so that we can always call it home.

The community is extensive and diverse. Every city has a different way of doing things, and a different hierarchy of rule. When entering a new city, you should familiarize yourself with the local community. Seek out the local havens. Learn what households have sway here. Get in touch with key members of the community, learn who is who, and show proper respect where it is due. You should not expect to impose your old way of doing things on this new community. Rather you should adapt to their rules and be glad of their acceptance.
Always be on your best behavior when coming to a new city either to visit or to stay. We are all cautious and territorial by nature, and only by making the most positive impression possible will you be accepted and respected in a new community.

This lifestyle is not for everyone. Take care in who you choose to bring into it. Those who are mentally or emotionally unstable have no place among us. They are dangerous and unreliable and may betray us in the future. Make certain that those you choose to bring in are mature enough for this burden. Teach them control and discretion, and make certain that they respect our ways.
You will be responsible for their actions, and their behavior in the community will be reflected back to you.

There are certain members of our community who have established themselves as just and responsible leaders. These are the people who helped establish local communities, who organize havens, and who work to coordinate the networking of our culture. While their word does not have to be law, they should nevertheless be respected. They have greater experience than many others, and usually greater wisdom. Seek these elders out to settle your disputes, to give you guidance and instruction, and to help you establish yourself in the local community.
Appreciate the elders for all they have given you: if it was not for their dedication, the community would not exist as it does now.

Without those who offer themselves body and soul to us, we would be nothing. We cannot be other than what we are, but it is the donors who sustain our nature. For this service, they should be respected. Never mistreat your donors, physically or emotionally. They are not to be manipulated or leeched off of for more than what they freely offer. Never take them for granted. Appreciate them for the companionship and acceptance which they offer us, which so many others would refuse. This above all: appreciate the gift of their life. That communion is sacred. Never fail to treat it as such.
When you choose to take a position of authority in the community, remember that you do not lead for yourself alone. Leadership is a responsibility, not a privilege. A good leader must set an example for everyone through his actions and behavior. His motives should be selfless and pure, and he should put the interests of the whole community before his own.
The best leaders are those who serve to better the community and whose person and behavior gives no one -- even those outside of the community -- a reason to criticize them. They must strive to be above reproach.

Being a vampire is not just about feeding upon life. That is what we do, but not necessarily what we are. It is our place to represent darkness in a world blinded by light. We are about being different and accepting that difference as something that empowers us and makes us unique. We are about accepting the dark within ourselves and embracing that darkness to make us whole beings. We are about celebrating the thresholds: body and spirit, pleasure and pain, death and life.
Our lives should be lived as a message to the world about the beauty of accepting the whole self, of living without guilt and without shame, and celebrating the unique and beautiful essence of every single soul.


© Virtual Reflections 2016