Tuesday, April 7, 2015

An Explanation For Vampire Lore

1. Why do crosses repel vampires?

Because the Church believed that vampires were demons that possessed the corpses of humans. As demons they shun religious icons and symbols.

2. Why does holy water burn vampires?

See answer for number 1.

3. Why does a vampire have to be staked through the heart?

The original point of staking a vampire through the heart was in fact to keep in in the grave. This practice was done on corpses suspected of being vampires. A wooden stake, sometimes a blessed wood or wood considered holy, like from the same species of wood the cross that Jesus was crucified on, would be driven through the heart and into the ground. This would serve two purposes, to destroy the heart and to keep the vampire in the ground. Additionally, a vampire could be stopped by decapitation and then placing the head between the legs in the grave or else by having a brick or large stone shoved into the corpses mouth. It was believed that vampires caused diseases and plagues by "chewing" their burial shroud.

4. Why does sunlight kill vampires?

It doesn't or I should state that not everyone believed this. In many places a vampire could roam during the day or night. However, people that believed that sunlight was fatal to vampires probably were observant and realized that dead bodies left out in the sun and heat of day decomposed faster than bodies buried in the ground. So that was likely the inspiration behind why sunlight kills vampires. Additionally, light represented "good" and darkness "bad" for many people.

5. Why do vampires drink blood?

Surprisingly, not all vampires drink blood. In fact, most vampires don't drink blood at all but rather cause disease or attack people in their sleep and drain them of energy. There are even vampires who arise from their graves strictly to have sex with their former lovers or spouses. In these cases the "victim" will eventually die of exhaustion if the vampire is not dealt with. For those vampires that do drink blood then the believe comes from the bible, "The blood is the life"

Deut. 12:23 KJV
23 Only be sure that thou eat not the blood: for the blood is the life; and thou mayest not eat the life with the flesh.

Ancient people realized that if an animal or person lost too much blood they would die. Then they came to view blood as a special liquid that contained the life force of the animal or person. So vampires, being undead, would need to frequently ingest living blood to retain a resemblance of life.

6. Why do you have to drink vampire blood to become a vampire?

You don't. Or should I say that this is not something that people really believed but rather is a very modern invention. In traditional vampire lore, merely being the victim of a vampire is enough to turn one into a vampire. However, this is not the only way to become a vampire. It was believed that witches and werewolves would often return as vampires when they were killed. Suicide victims were all said to risks for becoming vampires because suicide went against God's will. Even a black cat jumping over a corpse is enough to possibly turn a corpse into a vampire.

7. What is the ultimate truth behind the vampire myth?

A. People from older times did not understand the process of decomposition.
B. Vampires are in fact an invented excuse to explain diseases and plagues.
C. Vampires are an invented excuse to explain what we now call sleep paralysis.



Trivia: Thousands of people were executed during the witch and werewolf hunts. How many people were executed for allegedly being vampires? The answer is below.
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The answer is none. Since vampires were believed to be corpses that rose from the grave then therefore no living human beings were ever accused or arrested and executed for allegedly being vampires. However, thousands of corpses were dug up and desecrated as part of folk beliefs to kill a vampire.

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