posted on May, 18 2015 @ 02:48 AM
This world has one too many narcissists in it. And that's bad. It's bad because narcissists disturb the dynamics of a system into oscillatory
behavior. Which means chaotic, disequilibrated behavior.
The quintessential narcissist are the types of people characterized on Game of Thrones. The House Lannister, Tyrell and others, engage in this suave
way of talking where they act as if they don't know what the other person is asserting they know. Intersubjective communication, or the sheer "mind
aware of it's own mind", is entirely absent.
Experience for such a person is a game of chess, as it were, where 'hyper-cognitive' mentation configures reality in such a way by enacting
fantasies of themselves in relation with other people. The Narcissistic mind is fundamentally about defense. For whatever early life contextual
performances it was subject to, the person learns to relate to the world wholly from the vantage point of its own experience. Others - perhaps because
others related to them in such a fashion - occur with their minds as "objects", understood as people and having, in a purely cognitive-science sort
of way, minds that understand. But their relation to this perception is almost devoid of the affective-bodily elements that give any experience its
The narcissistic functions as a shell of its true self. The outside - whats given to the other - is tactical and restrained. What is given over is
first weighed, if not consciously, always unconsciously, to consider how this would benefit the self in light of meaningful object-relations, of
things in life which matter to them and incite intense desire. Social status. Power. Money.
The narcissist loves the experience - affectively - of finding themselves subjecting another person to their wills. In that situation, they are the
active and agentic one. Feelings pass into action, and they become more alive in their narcissistic self-convictions.
Emotions and the knowledge they convey about the state of the 'organism-system' are repeatedly refused entry into the frontal lobes. Living is
almost synonymous with lying. In their way of being in the world, they cannot touch upon the hurts that exist in them, buried beneath the years of
chronic conditioning, of a period early on which impressed a certain harshness into their psyche. The notion of shame, anxiety, and a feeling of
helplessness, is utterly contemptible. The Narcissistic will build up it's psychic shell and send out it's armies to protect itself from the prying
mind of the therapist. They of course do not see therapists, as most therapists would attest. Why would they go when life, for them, is so utterly
conceived as sane and healthy?
In speaking about narcissistic minds, I do not mean the healthy narcissism that Heinz Kohut rightfully pointed out. If at anytime one relates with the
other in acute reference - implicitly - to how one is experiencing oneself - than that is an essentially narcissistic experience. Of course, in many
experiences, there is often competing perceptions. Love for self AND love for the other. But most naturally, as animals who evolved on planet earth,
we are as prone to self-regard as any other creature. And for good reason: it keeps us alive as individuals.
But the individuals we find ourselves being is etiologically dependent on the social contexts we enter in life. These environments interact with our
nascent and growing - "complexifying" - mind, with every day. New experiences interact with old experiences to produce reenforcing feedbacks or
rebalancing feedbacks. The way were touched, spoken to, and the contexts are experiences unfurl within, have unique effects that interact with earlier
effects. Our minds are chemistry kits from the moment were born. Affects, lead to emotions, which lead to social emotions, which lead to sophisticated
cognitions. But throughout, it is the horrible feelings, the affects and emotions, which underlie the logic of human thinking.
The Narcissist is an extreme which relies upon dissociation of existential facts about being human. They insist on a naivete about what can be known.
They do not trust self-awareness, and will insist so - in super-cognitive autism - that the self-awareness I (or anyone else) attest to possess is any
useful guidance in understanding the "gist" of what happens in other minds.
But in fact, its solid science to extrapolate from animal models to human models. Animals, mammals, primates, basically all have simple prerogatives:
adapt to survive. And what is adaptive, at the most basic level, is the homeostatic viability of the physical organism. The physical organisms
viability is it's ability to "manage" the feedbacks that push its body into disequilibrium. In early cellular life, this is pretty
non-consciousness like. But the cognitive 'management' is there. Cellular life is definitely intelligent.
When you get to mammals the social and emotion elements of connection 'fuse' minds by carving out similar nervous systems. Each organism in a
species MUST be like the other, because the fundamental purpose (or behavior) of the organism is to survive not merely physically, but emotionally and
cognitively as well; which means, in psychic connection with other conspecifics. Emotional survival requires a 'management' that evolution has
evidently conserved, but largely at a homeostatic level, by biasing the mind to 'not think about' and ultimately, to 'dissociate' (throw into
unconsciousness), those bad parts of ourselves. Evidently, the brain keeps track of these things because all sorts of weird trauma symptoms show that
a mere element of a traumatizing experience (a color, a look, a gesture, a way of looking, etc) can trigger the originating traumatic emotion.
The narcissist, in effect, in systems terms, is "disordered". We can also call this "mentally ill". But they are an enormously tricky group of
people to convince this of. They will reject and dismiss and work from a hundred different angles to avoid accepting the point you're making. They
will withdraw from emotional contact - empathy - and function almost wholly in the I-It mode, listening, relaxingly mocking, or getting intense in
hope of "throwing you into submission". They are wild-animals without a conscious "captain" to guide the ship of their earthly existence.
Of course, all human beings possess the capacity for change. But the narcissistics psychic structure is formidable. Nothing less than a total change
of context and enforced psychotherapy would help them. But that, of course, is utterly illegal, not to mention unethical. My purpose in mentioning
that is to make clear just how desperate unwanted emotions make us. When they arise, we either identify or not. Not identifying causes confusion and
anxiety. Finding ourselves in the direction of our "object-relation" and the emotion therein, gives our lives meaning, even though in the case of
the narcissistic, it it completely delusional.
My idea of healthy is balance. This is what the body shows us in it's structure. The immune system, a "body within our body", literally defines
"us" at the physiological level. It is always gathering information about cells in its body. It knows itself, and it is only healthy when it can
both target invaders and know it's own tissue.