I’ve got to hand it to Demonbuster.com: the site’s stuck to its guns. It’s been online since the nineties and as far as I can tell has changed little since then, still proudly flying the flag for a specifically web 1.0 variety of kookiness. Once the insufferable MIDI file of religious music starts playing in the background, you know you’re in for a ride.
The site is run by Stan and Elizabeth Madrak of the End-Times Deliverance Ministry, although it’s published bits and pieces by a number of other writers. One of these is Michael Dawson, who contributed an article about vampires based on research that he conducted from 1997 to 1999. The article’s been removed – why, I have no idea, given that it’s hardly below the site’s overall standards – but you can still access it at Archive.org. While just as daffy as the rest of the site it’s a little more coherent than the Madraks’ own articles, so I decided to give it a closer look.
After a helpful notice from the Madraks (“END-TIME DELIVERANCE MINISTRY NOTE: THIS ARTICLE IS FOR CHRISTIANS, NOT VAMPIRES”) Dawson provides an introduction to his findings:
My fellow brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, I have finished my research on the vampire and what I thought would take only a few months took longer. I was thrust into a culture that took more time than I thought to research. As I prayed many nights for God’s protection and wisdom I was allowed to obtained this knowledge for the growth of our spiritual warfare knowledge.
Despite emphasising the scale of his research, Dawson cites only four sources: The Complete Guide to the World of the Undead by Manuela Dunn Mascetti; Piercing the Darkness: Undercover with Vampires in America Today by Katherine Ramsland; Vampires: The Occult Truth by Konstantino (which he advises people not to read) and, simply, “the Internet”. Still, this was enough to convince him that “the vampire demon and or demons are alive and well, and still feeding on people today” and requires stern opposition from people of faith. Although vampires are “spreading like wild flowers in our world today” they have apparently seen previous boom years:
Vampire’s have been around since the recorded history of man. All over the world there have been reports of vampire attacks and investigations for a long period of time. Europe, and especially its eastern borders, was at times plagued by hordes of vampires who literally bled the population of medieval villages to death.
It gets stranger still. Dawson tells us that “[s]cientists and researchers discovered that vampires had an extensive history and a clear history of their own”. Naturally, he fails to identify any of these alleged scientists or researchers by name. He instead backs up his assertion with a snippet of ancient Egyptian folklore, and comes across sounding like a drunken Montague Summers:
Their origins could be traced all the way back to ancient Egyptian times when the cult and worship of the dead was represented by ceremonies and rituals. The dead, who were alive in their own world, occasionally came to plague the inhabitants of the world of light and sometimes even took them back into the unknown, taking their lives away.
After a brisk outline of vampire folklore from around the world, Dawson explains what vampires are up to in the present day, giving what amounts to a garbled description of the more full-on Goth subcultures:
The more modern day vampire, or correctly speaking, vampyre, is one who believes and craves not only blood, but the life force or spiritual energy of another. Many believe that they were always a vampyre, and came to the realization of what they are, feeling that somehow the bloodline of the vampyre was passed down to them through the generations. Others were fascinated by the stories of Anne Rice and Stoker’s Vampire, along with many others, began to take the role of the many characters of their books. These creatures were and are always portrayed as higher entities, demi-gods and fallen angels. Highly sexual creatures perceiving everything to the extreme and to its fullest way beyond human imagination.
Moving on to vampires in entertainment, Dawson hails the first Blade film as “the best description of the modern day vampyre as I have researched” but derides it for using a benevolent vampire as a hero. He is even less impressed with the gaming world:
The use of video games are also a huge contributor of vampire influence. Games like Blood Omen legacy of Kain, Darkstalkers, Castelvania series are all tools used by satan to allow a person to take the role of a vampire and experience life through its eyes.
Where do we find vampires? Well, Dawson tells us that they’re particularly common in New Orleans due to the Anne Rice connection, with New York being “the second most thriving vampire city.” Alas, few are aware of this, thanks to a secularist cover-up:
Unfortunately, many have blamed insane behavior and never considered demonic influence. Multiple personalities have also covered up many vampire crimes and thus they are shuffled under the rug. Fortunately, God has allowed scientists and some police records to be salvaged among the big cover up. Now that we know about how they think and their ways, let’s look at the spiritual warfare we may endure when dealing with one who might be suffering from the vampyre demons.
The evil spirits that cause vampirism can apparently be absorbed by drinking blood, or simply by enjoying vampire fiction (“From there, all it takes is the right movie or vampire story that is infested with the vampire demon to come in”). Once the demons have taken hold, the victim will undergo a terrifying transformation into a Goth:
It is a slow process for those of strong religious background and faster for those who are not. For both, they begin to dabble in the art of fantasy and pornography to satisfy their sexual feelings. Their dress changes from subtle to more erotic and provocative. For most, they begin to wear the colors of the night, mostly black or gray. For the extreme, they paint their faces the pale white color and wear the black lipstick. For the not so extreme, they remain mostly quiet, usually walking with their head down and or hair over the eyes, with Black gothic jewelry. By then you can bet that the spirit has come to them and offered the deal of immortality. In return, they live inside them, sucking their Christian faith and love for God right out of them.
Yikes! But fear not, as Michael Dawson offers a comprehensive guide to disposing of troublesome vampire demons.
For a bit of additional context, Demonbuster.com is a deliverance ministry. That means that it belongs to a particularly odd branch of fundamentalist Christianity established by Frank and Ida Mae Hammond, authors of an inexplicably influential book called Pigs in the Parlor. Deliverance ministries are focused on casting out demons, and are fond of providing lists of demonic names to cast out one by one.
But if you’re expecting those names to be like Beelzebub or Asteroth or Leviathan, you’ll be in for a surprise: the evil spirits of deliverance ministry demonology are more likely to be named after emotional states, medical disorders or new age paraphernalia. Let’s look at some excerpts from the list of vampire demons offered by Richard Dawson.
Here are some key words that will help you to a more effective deliverance session: Cast these demons OUT, in the name of Jesus.
Anne Rice – Author of Interview with a Vampire, resides in New Orleans with many fans and followers of the vamp culture
Okay, I know Anne Rice has her detractors, but labelling her a demonic spirit that needs to be banished to hell seems harsh.
Blood letting – Letting someone cut you to feed.
Blood lust – lusting and desiring blood.
Blood Pack – Making a pact sealing the agreement in blood.
Blood Sports – Having fun with blood and Scaring as if it was some kind of sport.
Has Dawson just looked in a dictionary and decided that every phrase beginning with “blood” was the name of a demon?
Book of Nod – Written by White Wolf Productions, based on the Biblical Curse of Cain. Explains how his curse made him into a vampire.
Bram’s Stoker – The author of “Dracula”, Most recent Movie of Dracula.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – TV series about a vampire hunter killing vampires, but she is also in love with one.
Children of Lilith – People turned by the vampire Lilith from her generation on down, From the Book of Nod, Curse of Cain.
It’s not just Anne Rice who’s a demon, apparently – it’s Bram Stoker, too. Better cast out his restless spirit. Curious that we’re casting out Buffy but not Angel when he’s the one Dawson seems to have an issue with. Also, note the confusion between Vampire: The Masquerade and reality.
Dracula – Vampire of myth and folklore.
Dracula Society – an organization that follows the myth and legends of Dracula.
“Be thou exorcised, O Dracula! And your fan club, too, that lot can get packing as far as I’m concerned.”
Fluid Friction – The mixture of sexual secretions with Blood usually associated with the gay vampyres.
Sounds like wet wipes and disinfectant would do a better job than prayers, but you do you.
Generation X – considered to be the lost generation/generation of the damned.
As a reminder, this was written in the late nineties. Wonder what he made of us millennials.
Goth obsession – a love/obsession for the Medieval times.
This is a quaintly Walpolian definition, but there we go.
Mages – Role playing game characters are vampires
More garbled references to White Wolf RPGs.
Vlad Tepes the Impaler
Seems a bit redundant, since the list already named Dracula. Or are Dracula and Vlad two different guys who both happen to be vampire demons? Must be confusing for their mates.
This is just a small sampling. The full list includes a few beings from actual folklore and mythology (Anubis, Incubus, Succubus, Lamiai, Lycanthrope) but these are outnumbered by the clearly nonsensical entries, including sexual practices and perversions (meet the demons of Sadism, Masochism, Pornography and Necrophilia) and terms connected to role-playing (one demon is named “LARP”, another called simply “Role players”).
And then we have the two demons that are actually psychiatric disorders: “Multiple/split personality”, and “Psychopathic”. At this point, we get a glimpse of where the true harm lies. There are clearly people here playing with dangerous matters that they don’t understand, but it’s not the LARPers or the Buffy fans. It’s people like Richard Dawson and the Madraks. Telling mentally ill people that they’ve got demons in them, and that these unclean spirits can be driven out through an obsessive-compulsive system of prayers directed at fictional characters from vampire novels, is unlikely to help matters.
But hey, if you’ve bought into this stuff and are unconvinced by my arguments, you can take comfort in Demonbuster.com’s message of salvation: “VAMPIRES WANTING TO STOP BEING VAMPIRES JUST NEED TO GET SAVED AND DELIVERED.”