As I've shared before, my paternal ancestral genetic I2 lineage arose in the region of the Danube in Romania (which includes Transylvania and Wallachia) around 50,000 years ago. The I2 clan is one my father shares with Prince Vlad Dracul, also known as the vampire Dracula.
In the folklore of my ancestors, it is known that vampires are able to shapeshift into a single bat and into a cloud of bats as they so choose. In the Old Swedish language of my ancestors, the word for bat is 'natbakka' (meaning night-bat). Bats are creatures of the night and darkness.
Through the darkness, bats do not see well with their eyes. In fact, the vision of bats through the eyes is very poor even in the light. Many bats have mesopic vision and can only detect light at low levels. They cannot see colors, an ability of phototopic vision. To navigate through the darkness, bats rely on echolocation and magnetoreception.
While most humans are not skilled at echolocation, this sense can be developed (and is by the blind). Interestingly, in studies using blind persons, it was not the auditory areas of the brain involved in human echolocation. Echolocation in the blind is processed in the visual area of the brain (a region of the brain expanded in Cro-Magnon humans). Thus, echolocation vibrational waves are not 'heard' by the auditory center of the brain, but rather, they are 'seen' by the visual center of the brain. The driving mechanism allowing the blind to 'see sound' is known among neuroscientists as neuroplasticity (the ability to adapt and to remap the brain in response to environmental changes).
Interestingly, neuroplasticity is also an adaptive mechanism used by those on the autism spectrum. Persons on the autism spectrum are classed by scientists as 'aneurotypical' because of our atypical patterns of perception, thought and behavior. Our brains are wired a bit differently than those who are neurotypical. While I am not full blown autistic, my atypically high preference for solitude (into which few outside of family are allowed) and silence (secondary to atypical sensitivity), odd ways of thinking, cognitive atypical connection to the unseen worlds, and my personality which carries traits of the schizotypal personality put me on the autism spectrum. I am aneurotypical, and like the bat, I have the ability to adapt to my environment and to succeed according to my own preferences. When I choose to, I can pass myself off within society as a neurotypical, though this is energetically draining for me over a lengthy period of time (as it is for introverted persons as well).
While I am not schizophrenic nor schizoid, I do have a maternal first cousin, a paternal great aunt and two paternal second cousins who do have schizophrenia. Thus, aneurotypical adaptability (or maladaptions if they are unable to sufficiently produce adaptive remapping of the brain) to changes in the environment is passed down the genetic bloodline. In my case, the genes associated with both the autistic spectrum and neuroplasticity produced an eccentric, solitude loving, spiritually sensitive, atypically aware, oddly creative thinker.
Bat Spirit experiences atypical perception and atypical neural processing of sensory data. It epitomizes the mastery of perception.
As with echolocation, humans may also be able to develop the sixth sense of magnetoreception. In humans, the magnetoreceptor is located in the retina of the eye.
A bat will rarely bite a human, but when it does, it often returns the next night to bite that same human it bit previously. By the way we breathe, bats can identify and distinguish one human from another.
Taking all of this together, as a daughter of the Cro-Magnon Dragon Clan, and embracing the vampire legends which descend from it, I claim the Spirit of Bat as one of my own familiar spirit guides.
There are two runes Algiz hidden in my mother rune Hagall (see my post Dragon Lineage: Mind, Memory & Being). Algiz is a rune I associate with the Spirit of Bat. A totem of consciousness and awareness, Bat Spirit is a hugrún. A combination of 'hug' (meaning mind, spirit, thought) and 'rún' (meaning secret, secret knowledge), a hugrún also carries the power of Hamingja. Other Bat Spirit associations with which I identify include: clairvoyance, supracognition (neuroplasticity), communication through worlds of reality, a classical shamanic calling, shapeshifting, atypical perceptual acuity, expert navigation through darkness, vibrational work, the ability to perceive the unseen and to understand secret mysteries of consciousness, and reception and expression of bloodline mysteries.
Dare to be true to yourself.
Have a blessed Samhain!