A news website published an interview with me about my nothingness philosophy. It is so concise and so comprehensive and such a good introduction to nothingness that I'm going to read the entire thing and then I think I will upload it to my nothingness channel and make it the lead video, the video you see when you first visit the channel because it's really pretty good.
So I'm going to read the whole thing from A to Z.
Sam Vaknin is the author of Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited, as well as many other books and e-books about topics in psychology, relationships, philosophy, economics, international affairs, and award-winning short fiction. He's a visiting professor of psychology in Southern Federal University, or Stovandon, Russia, and a professor of finance and a professor of psychology in SIAPS, Center for International Advanced and Professional Studies.
Here we talk briefly about his philosophy of nothingness, newest intervention website.
Scott Douglas Jacobson is the interviewer.
Scott asks, our focus today is the proposal of nothingness in a specific sense by you.
To start in negation, what is not nothingness in your sense?
My answer, nothingness is not about being a nobody. It's not about doing nothing. It's not about self-negation, self-denial, self-denial idleness, fatalism, or surrender. It's not about any of these things.
Jacobson asks, following from the previous question, what is nothingness?
My answer, nothingness is about choosing to be human, not a lobster. It is about putting firm boundaries between you and the world. It is about choosing happiness, not dominance. It is accomplishing from within, not from without. It is about not letting others regulate your emotions, your moods, and your thinking. It is about being an authentic you with a single voice.
Jacobson asks, how does this nothingness connect to neo-deism and Buddhism?
And I'm referring to a video on my nothingness channel, which deals with neo-deism and Buddhism, and I recommend that you watch it too.
Jacobson proceeds, we live, as many know, in an era of narcissism. You brought this issue to light in 1995, particularly pathological narcissism.
What are the roots of the ongoing crisis or rise in individual and collective narcissism?
My answer, the need to be seen, the need to be noticed in an overcrowded and terrifyingly atomized world.
Ironically, narcissism is a cry for hell, a desperate attempt to reconnect. There is no such thing as an individual. We are all the products of our interactions with other people, object relations.
But increasingly, technology is rendering us self-sufficient and isolated. So our social instincts metastasize into narcissism.
Dominance and hierarchy replace sharing and networking.
Jacobson asks, how does one choose happiness over dominance, authenticity over being fake, and humanity rather than lobster kind with this form of nothingness?
My answer, we need to choose happiness over dominance. We need to be human, not a lobster. We need to choose meaning over complexity. We need to choose fuzziness, incompleteness, imperfection, uncertainty, and unpredictability.
In short, we need to choose life itself over illusory and fallacious order, structure, rules, and perfection, which are essentially imposed on reality. In other words, death. We need to choose the path, the journey, the trajectory over any destination, the journey over any goal, the process over any outcome, the questions we should prefer to any answers. We need to be an authentic person, the single inner voice, proud of the internal, not of the external.
Jacobson asks, what is the importance of living a life worth remembering in the philosophy of nothingness?
My answer, identity depends on having a continuous memory of a life fully and well lived and actualized. At the end of it all, if your life were a movie, would you want to watch this movie from beginning to end?
Nothingness consists of directing your life in accordance with an idiosyncratic, autobiographical script, your script, no one else's.
Being authentic means becoming the single story which only you can tell.
Jacobson, what type of personality or person can accept nothingness in its fullest sense?
My answer, only those who are grandiose are incapable of nothingness.
Grandiosity is the illusion that one is godlike and therefore encompasses everything and everyone.
Grandiosity therefore precludes authenticity because it outsources one's identity and renders one's identity reliant on input from other people. I call it the hive mind.
Jacobson, how is nothingness an antidote to narcissism?
I respond, narcissism is erisatz, it's fake.
The only self in narcissism is false.
Others, other people are instrumentalized and they are used to regulate one's sense of fore-cohering oneness.
I'm going to repeat this, narcissism is erisatz, it's fake.
The only self in narcissism is false.
Other people are instrumentalized and they are used in order to regulate one's sense of fore-cohering oneness.
Nothingness, in contrast, is hark, is real, is true.
The Ray McCoy harking back to the only true authentic voice, eliminating all other introjects, not using other people to regulate one's internal psychological landscape.
Narcissism is early a nation, it interpolates in a society of the spectacle.
Nothingness, on the other hand, gives rise to true intimacy between authentic selves.
What is the ultimate wisdom in the philosophy of nothingness?
My short answer is, identify the only voice inside you that is truly you. Peel the onion, peel the onion until nothing is left behind, but the onions smell.
Read yourself of introjected socialization.
Then to conclude, what is the motto or catchphrase of nothingness in this sense?
And I say, do unto yourself that which you want others to do to you.
Jacobson, thank you for the opportunity and for your time, Professor Vaknin. Much obliged for having me. Always a pleasure.