On my Facebook page a while ago I posted a description of what Energy Vampires are.

Most of us are aware of the basic definition, or can sort of suss it out by the label– they are people whom we walk away from, whether in person, online, or through other forms of communication (phone, etc.) and feel drained and devitalized as a result of our encounter.

If we look at the deeper spiritual and energetic reasonings for why Energy Vampires do such a thing, it is in most cases because they are so wounded, so lacking in basic energy field integrity (from trauma, both personal and transpersonal– ancestral and familial being a big source of this) that they can no longer fill themselves back up.

So they rely on feeding on the energy of others to sustain themselves, which is only a temporary fix (and so this behavior is highly repetitive in those who truly are vampiric).

The question is, then, what exactly is their feeding mechanism?

There are a few ways that they achieve this. Often they create drama and poke and prod people (basic internet trolls) so they get an emotional rise out of them. Adept Energy Vampires (EV’s) will emotionally manipulate, blackmail, make false claims, and use the wounds or basic needs of the person, or people, they are looking to drain, against them.

One thing I have noticed over time is the implicit understanding that EV’s have of the basic human need for approval. The EV’s that have come my way as a result of my professional work have always attempted, for example, to hang my work over my head, and their approval of it. In my earlier years I might have responded to such a thing, and needed such approval, but nowadays I don’t (although obviously I appreciate when people resonate with my work, read it, and it helps them in some way) and I have enough perspective to see the mechanism and wounding behind such an attempt, and would rather have people use my work who will not use it to create further delusion or even outright harm for themselves.

The other method that EV’s use is to create compassion and concern for themselves. They often are truly suffering, otherwise they wouldn’t need to be EV’s, but they will rely on the sympathy of others, as well as the empathy of others, to feed.

This is particularly problematic for empathic individuals who do not have boundaries. They are used to helping others, and often can feel the pain and suffering of the EV. Sometimes the resonance between two people (EV and empath/other person) due to a similar soul wound can also make the Empath/other person an easy target for the EV.

It is important to remember that you can see the pain of another individual, you can see how destructive and unfortunate their behavior is (EV’s lack basic nurturing and connection and so feel as if they need to manipulate and coerce nurturing from others), and to still have boundaries that allow for them to not feed on you.

It is also important to remember that we all have needs for healing, and it is by examining the times that we have been EV’s, or have been drawn into this mechanism with EV’s, that we are being shown areas where we could use personal healing or boundary strengthening.

It is possible to get to a point of thanking such individuals, if they are successful, for showing you something that you need to heal inwardly.

In most cases, EV’s are not consciously aware of what they are doing. They are simply drowning in pain and do not have the energetic congruency or integrity of their field (too much trauma) and they are doing what they feel they need to do to survive. 

People are simply a sum of their wounds, and can only be expected to act differently when they are more conscious and whole.

It is easy to have compassion for them, because it is clear how they are suffering, and it is clear that their need to act like this comes from a place that spreads across the entirety of their lives. The EV pattern is one of control, of being so frightened at the proposition of being nurtured in a healthy way from other human beings, that the choice has been made to push away humanity, to attempt to control others, and to participate in dynamics that are coercive and manipulative in an attempt to connect.

If we were to look at the specific dynamics of this feeding mechanism, I will say that our emotional field (the aspect of the aura that has all the pretty colors and shadows) is a sort of pivot point in our field as a whole.

If we were to have a quasi-theosophist approach to the energy bodies, from most “dense” to least, we have our physical bodies, our etheric (our body double that regulates a lot of the functions of our physical bodies), our astral (emotional), mental, and then spiritual bodies.

Our emotional and mental bodies are more malleable, more changeable, than our physical form. A quick burst of anger, for example, can create a huge burst of red into the emotional body.

This capacity towards change in the emotional body also can change the energetic integrity or congruency of the energy field as a whole. More simply put, if someone responds emotionally to someone, it can allow access to the vital energies of the body (in the etheric and physical form) as well as can allow easy pickings from the emotional field.

That burst of energy, that interest in whatever drama is being stirred up (and said participation in said drama, even if it is like looking at a car crash while driving by), or even the compassion offered based off of resonance of similar soul wounds or the basic human compassion and reaction to someone in victim mode or considerable pain, creates large fluxes in our emotional body… and a lot of energy that can be drained by said EV.

In rare cases, EV’s do know damn well what they are doing, and will purposefully stir up drama to sell things/create business, to create interest (the witnessing of a train wreck to distract the self from focusing inward), or will focus on people who have a lot of energy (such as spiritual practitioners) in various ways that can be quite skilled. There are also conscious individuals who rely on consent and willing partners to exchange energy. This is not what I am talking about in this blog.

Such individuals can link through other means than emotional energy to do so to gain direct access to the vital essence of the physical form, which provides more sustained feeding (relying on emotional energy to feed is quite short lived, as people quickly move on to the next drama and their emotional fields change).

One of the easiest ways to note if you are corded to someone, if they are corded detrimentally to you (or you to them) is if you are thinking about them days, weeks, months, or even years later. If when you recall them, that sudden burst of emotional energy occurs.

At the very least, this signifies that some healing work is needed, but in other cases it means that someone has successfully corded to you and is still draining you without your conscious awareness. If you are interested in how to work with cords and developing basic energetic boundaries, I suggest my Complete Cord Course book

But let’s move on to a discussion about the internet and social media. There is a distinct cosmic joke in the fact that I will be posting this on my blog, as well as on Facebook, of course.

When I talk about Animism to people, they typically have no difficulty understanding that their pets, or even the tree outside, is a vital consciousness that can be on some level communicated or interacted with.

Mostly, such communion relies on moving beyond our rather static minds that want to place human forms of communication, thought processes, and ways of being (ethics, insights, etc.) onto the natural and spiritual realms, which prevents people from interfacing with much beyond their own psychological needs and mental creations.

But when we talk about something less tangible– such as Facebook and what sort of intelligence, or being, it might be, it is understandably more difficult for us to move away from said human mentalities that are entrenched in what can be seen and touched as being conscious, or a being or spirit of some sort.

I was speaking with a student the other day about how people used to view diseases as spirits… and obviously if we are talking about Black Death or something, not a particularly good one.

But if we look at my description of how an EV works, we can begin to discuss how other energies and consciousness, such as social media, relies on the same parasitic behavior and mechanisms to feed.

The continual creation of drama, the heightening of fear and anger, the provoking of continual outrage. Even the glistening pictures, the masks of success, the reliance on incredibly wounded people to continually participate in sharing their wounds with other wounded individuals resulting in a consolidation of said wounds. The nimble distractions and quizzes to distract and anesthetize, the continual wars and interpersonal conflicts.

In Chinese Medicine we talk about how it is natural for people to move towards their imbalances, instead of a place of health.

For example, the type of person who does hot yoga with the sort of drill instructor teacher is likely a “fire” personality– excitable, dynamic, constantly doing. That person to become balanced could use “being” time– yin yoga, meditation, restorative yoga.

The “water” person is going to be attracted to activities where they don’t need to move– meditation, sitting quietly, yin yoga. That person could use more dynamic and “fire” activities, to balance themselves out.

We can see this in ourselves, and how we engage with others. We most often find others who are a reflection of our wounds. This is especially happening in online spaces, where people who are already distanced from reality (and often from stability) can find so many others who think and act and have the same wounding patterns, the same blind spots, as they do.

This only consolidates those patterns, encourages the person to move further into imbalance.

I am in no way suggesting that you project all of your difficulties onto social media. It can be used as a vital tool, and like all beings, it has its wonderful points (in nuanced reality, things are rarely solely villainous or victim). With awareness, we can recognize the mechanisms behind such an being, as we can on an individual level with EV’s, and make the conscious choice of if we are participating in it– either by allowing ourselves to be fed on, or by being an EV ourselves.

As with all things, we can look to see if we are moving towards a space of health, clarity, and wholeness, or if we are merely perpetuating or consolidating our wounds.


Mary Mueller Shutan is a spiritual healer, teacher, and author. You can fid out more information on dealing with energetic cords in her book, The Complete Cord Course: Working with Cords through Energy Work and Shamanic Healing.