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Narcissists, Empaths, Viking Fantasies (Q&As with Eve Tawfik)

Uploaded 8/27/2022, approx. 1 hour 16 minute read

Hello, my name is Eve Torfic, I'm a British journalist and I'm here interviewing the wonderful Dr. Sam Vaknin about his expertise in narcissism. And I work for a British newspaper, but this interview is not conducted on behalf of my work and the opinions are my own and not that of my employer.

Okay, so hello. Nice to see you.

The aforementioned text is what is known as disclaimer. So now we can get to the conversation.

Hello, good to see you.

Good to see you too.

Okay, so the questions I'm going to ask you today have been put to me by people who have been in relationships with those they believe to be narcissists, as you've discussed very often on your channel, that narcissism is rife online, therefore, but not as prevalent in the community as the online world would have you believe.

So with that in mind, one lady asked me to put to you, is there a way to make away with a relationship with a narcissist work?

Well, yes, of course, if you suspend yourself, if you no longer display any signs of autonomy, independence, if you become an extension of the narcissist, if you become totally servile and subservient, and if you begin even to anticipate the narcissist needs long before he verbalizes them, and so on, so forth, then this could work, could work in the long term.

Narcissists are focused on what I call the four S's. And all you need to do is satisfy two of the four in order to remain in the narcissist's life for good, for his good, at least. And the four S's are, sex, supply, either narcissistic or sadistic, if you agree to be the narcissist punching bag, and you know, allow him to speak to you in a derogatory manner, abuse you, and I mean, that's a fair substitute for narcissistic supply.

So supply of any kind, that's the second S.

The third S is safety, becoming a doormat, so that the narcissist doesn't develop an abandonment anxiety, conforming totally to the narcissist's view of you, in clinical terms is known as an introject, and I call it the snapshot. And then if you conform to this view, 100%, the narcissist doesn't develop abandonment anxiety, safety, and services, you will find yourself becoming the narcissist's personal assistant, chauffeur, chambermaid, and so on and so forth in due time. Ultimately, the relationship degenerates into a very transactional arrangement where you provide two of the four S's, and the narcissist graces you with his eternal presence.

And that's the only benefit that a partner of a narcissist who was wanting to make it work, would get the presence of the narcissist who they believe to be omnipotent, omnipowerful, etc. based on the shared fantasy that you often describe in your videos.

Yes, the narcissist regards himself as a deity, in many respects, not himself actually, because he doesn't have a self, but he regards his false self. As a deity, the narcissist himself worships his false self, sacrifices to the false self. And it's the equivalent of a cult or a sect. Narcissism is missionary. He tries to, as an intimate partner, he tries to convert you to fit in to follow his creed, to become an adherent of this one man cult. And so you should be honored to be among the first disciples and apostles of this new faith.

And like some Charlie Manson style, you know, thing going on, Charlie Manson, Jim, I mean, the Kool-Aid incident and many, many others. Yes, the general idea is that it's a once in a lifetime opportunity and experience to be in the presence of a reincarnated God, a God who is flesh and blood.

Even the sex with the narcissist is a mystical experience, even if it's bad, especially if it's bad. It's a mystical experience.

And you should be overwhelmed.

How is it mystical?

Can you describe, say, layman's terms? How is it a mystical experience?

It's uniting with the ocean. It's uniting with the divine.

The narcissist is the narcissist mind or is that in the mind of?

No, it's in the narcissist mind.

Oh, I see.

He regards sex as an example, but he regards any interruption, actually, is affording you the unique opportunity to interact with higher planes of existence. It's exactly a mystical experience in his mind.

And so you should be eternally grateful. And you should, of course, display your gratitude in a variety of ways, the four S's.

And here is magnanimous because two or four would suffice.

He doesn't demand all four consistently.

And, you know, so two or four is being is concessionary.

It's giving you a concession.


OK, because I find it interesting despite a wealth of advice that women or men or any victim of a narcissist should go no contact with a person, just leave, never speak to them again.

That there are actually people out there who want to make this style of relationship work.

What type of person would that be?

I know you've touched on it in other videos, but in a nutshell, what kind of person would want to make a relationship with a narcissist work?

Does it mean they're extremely empathetic, as they claim, or is it somebody with such low self-esteem that they need to have a deity in order to survive?

Well, I'm glad they asked this question and no, we did not coordinate the questions and I didn't receive the questions in advance.

So I'm glad you asked this question because it's a hell of a lot of confusion.

The narcissist is promiscuous as far as mate selection. Anyone who would provide him with the four with two of the four S's would do sex, services, safety and supply. Anyone who provides him with two of the four would do, as an intimate partner, so-called. I call his partners insignificant others.

So anyone would do. The narcissist is not selective.

However, it is true that certain types of personality are attracted inexorably to the narcissist. So this creates a lot of confusion because it looks from the outside, it looks as if the narcissist is being selective because we keep getting the same types of mating, the same types of couples.

We say, you see, the narcissist ends up with co-dependence all the time.

Yeah, but not by his choice. It's the co-dependent who chooses the narcissist.

That's often fed up by a lot of people.

Oh, I keep picking the same man or I seem to end up with the same woman. You know, is this just the psyche matching the other psyche and that inevitably, you know, forms this big bang?

Is it to get confused because looking at the phenomenon, you say, well, you see, same types of partners keep ending up with the narcissist.

Yes, but it's not the narcissist doing.

Anyhow, to answer your question, there are two things these people are looking for.

Self-love, an experience of self-love and an experience of something bigger than themselves, who or which can subsume them safely, a sense of safety.

And I'll elaborate on these two mainly because I like the sound of my voice.

And the sound of your voice is very fantastic. Does that give you supply?

Of course, I can't have the other three S's at least, you know, give me the default.


Let's start with self-love.

The narcissist provides you with the equivalence of motherhood. He provides you with unconditional love in the sense that he loves you and then idealizes you.

It's exactly what mothers do when they have a new baby. They idealize the baby, of course, because babies are a pain in many unspecified parts of the anatomy. The mother needs to idealize the baby in order to persevere and survive. It's as simple as that.

So mothers do this, they idealize, and then they provide unconditional love. Unconditional love doesn't mean lack of discipline or lack of boundaries. That's not what it means. It means loving the child for his or her essence, loving the child essentially as an essence.

The narcissist does this to you. He love bombs you and then he idealizes you. And then he grants you access to your own idealized image through his gaze. So you are mothering yourself through the narcissist's gaze.

And for the first time in the life of many of his partners, they feel, they experience self-love. And this is an intoxicating sensation. It's very difficult to let go of this. It's addictive.


The second way the narcissist gets you hooked and conditioned even, conditioned is a much more rigorous term in psychology. But definitely hooked is the feeling that he is so unique, so unprecedented, so special, so accomplished, so everything that being with him, being chosen by him is a privilege. And not only is it a privilege, but you get included or you get inducted into something that is bigger than you.

Again, it's the equivalent of religion.

I've got to say that that cult-like element seems to be surfacing again.

Yes. It's the absolute equivalent of a religion. It may be a one-man religion, but it's still a religion. And you are the worshiper or the follower or the adherent or the fan or whatever you want to call yourself. And so fan, by the way, is short for fanatic. It comes from the word fanatic.

So you become a missionary. You become a missionary on behalf of the narcissist.

For example, partners of narcissists are very defensive of the narcissist. When the narcissist is challenged or attacked or criticized, they tend to defend the narcissist vehemently and aggressively. For the first time in the lives of many of these partners, they have an organizing principle and an explanatory principle. It's called hermeneutic principle. Suddenly the world makes sense. Suddenly there's meaning and direction and goal, and it all emanates from this Godhead, the narcissist.

And suddenly you can suspend your own responsibility, your own accountability, the tedium of having to make decisions. You can hand them over to the narcissist and you feel safe.

Exactly the same dynamic plays out in dictatorships. Exactly. People hand over responsibility, accountability, decision-making choices. They hand them over to the fear. And Hitler knows better, knows best. And that's it.

Now, it reduces anxiety. I don't mean that literally by the way. He doesn't know best.

But when it comes to...

One more sentence with your permission. It's an anxioletic. It reduces anxiety.

Being with a narcissist reduces anxiety. It's exactly like self-medicating.

Would you say then, leading on from that, would you then say it produces anxiety later on?

Because often victims of narcissists say one of the things that define their relationship with the narcissist is the crippling anxiety, the not knowing, the constant gut feelings that were ignored, the times where they knew they were cheating or they knew there was something going wrong and they've got a huge amount of anxiety.

So what you're describing sounds initially that it's soothed and then it comes back tenfold.

Yes, you could call it a rebound effect.

A little like COVID. It's a rebound effect. The narcissist misleads you, soothes you, kind of artificially induces in you the equivalent of anesthesia. You're put under the spell, you're enchanted.

But then inexorable dynamics within the narcissist cause him to push you away and then to devalue you and then to cheat on you, which is a form of devaluation and then everything.

And then of course, your anxiety skyrockets. But your anxiety skyrockets because you're terrified to lose the narcissist.

Yeah, yeah. That's the thing. When you're at the uncertainty stage, which again, I've heard from victims as I've been collecting my own days.

So, you know, the stage where the narcissist is pulling away, they've found a better source of supply or a different source of supply and you're very uncertain and you're sitting there going, well, am I with them? Am I not?

They're breadcrumbing me and all this kind of thing. So yeah.

Yes, it's a fear of loss, actually. So it's not true that the partner becomes anxious because she wants to terminate or break up with the narcissist or something. That is post-facto justifications.

I mean, look how strong I am. I broke up with the narcissist. I am an empath or a super galactic empath that's the latest I've heard. Super galactic empath. I'm kidding you. I'm not kidding you.

I'm sorry. A super galactic empath. Yes.

Well, you know, what's one of those?

Can you tell me what one of those actually is?

A super galactic empath is an empath to the power of 10 or something or a thousand or something.

Oh, I see.

So it's all forms of grandiose.


Let's look down the empath rabbit hole.

Yeah, that's a very interesting subject as well. One thing I wanted to ask you as well, because this isn't often covered hugely. How can you tell if one of your friends is a narcissist?

Because this one I find very difficult to define.

A relationship, I would say, listening to your good self, I'm pretty well versed on how to avoid one.

If, you know, the case arises that a friend, say a close female friend of mine, how would I be able to tell if she is a narcissist?

Is there such a thing, a close female friend? Is that possible?

I would say I have female friends who I would regard as the sisters I never had.

Yeah, I'm kidding.

But yeah, I know what you mean.

Yeah, us women can be tricky on occasion.

Yes, indeed. On many occasions.

They're clinically, in clinical settings and academic settings, we make a distinction between what we call narcissistic style, coinage by Lynn Sperry, and narcissistic personality, which is Millon's contribution and narcissistic disorder.

Now, there's a debate whether these are merely gradations on a spectrum. It's like more of the same is a personality and much more of the same is a disorder, or whether there are substantial, essential differences.

And I subscribe to the second camp.

Narcissistic style is an a-hole. Simply to not to elaborate too much. I mean, anyone you meet is a jerk. That's probably someone with a narcissistic style.

The emphasis, the emphasis there would be on grandiosity, not so much on lack of empathy. Someone with a narcissistic style is actually capable of empathy, including emotional empathy, but he's so grandiose that his grandiosity being a cognitive distortion provides him with the wrong information about reality. So he acts in ways which are injurious, abrasive, etc.

So that's a narcissistic style. And there are many people like that, of course, 15, 20% of the population by some instance.

So sorry to interrupt. I'll give you a very quick example of what I would call narcissistic style. Would you be able to confirm for me whether this level of grandiosity is indicative of disorder or style?

So essentially, female A lives a very comfortable life. She comes across as quite eloquent, quite well-read, fairly unassuming, and quite kind.

But then underneath that is the first of all quiet mention of their qualifications, and then the increase in mention of their qualifications. Say they're a doctor or they've got a PhD or they've just bought a yacht or something like that. And you start to see these little flashes almost beneath the mask of this very sweet, almost the most normal person in the room.

But then when you look back on your friendship, you can see all along that there were these markers of grandiosity. Would you say that was a narcissist you were dealing with, or just an a-hole with a narcissistic style?

Depends crucially whether these, what you call markers, are fantastic. In other words, they're not real, they're lies or confabulations. Or whether they are merely an over-emphasis of actual accomplishments.

Over-emphasis of actual accomplishments in a setting where they would be used to impress.

Because a yacht, can I have a number?

No, no, that person's for me. Yeah, okay. It's style.

If the bragging and so on is based on, is an exaggeration of hyperbole based on reality, in most cases it's style.

The transition to an narcissistic personality involves evolved fantasy defenses, and a lot of confabulation. Confabulation is not lying. Confabulation is simply bridging memory gaps by inventing plausible scenarios of what might have happened, could have happened, should have happened, and probably happened. End of story. So this is called confabulation.

And so this marked the transition to a personality, narcissistic personality. And then the lack of empathy, exploitativeness, extreme envy, entitlement, added onto this foundation.

This render the person someone with narcissistic personality disorder.

In that case, I think I have to re-evaluate some people I know.

Good luck with that.

But yeah, so somebody who poses as innocent, would cheat on their husband or sleep with a friend's husband, but poses as extremely innocent, you know, this kind of thing. You know, they're very smart, they're very sweet, and they're always very moral when you ask them for advice. But beneath that veneer is addiction, lies, deception, that kind of thing. So if I was looking for a female friend, and that's what I came across, is that safe to say that is somebody to avoid, and that is a narcissistic style?

Well, regardless of whether it is narcissistic style, it's definitely someone to avoid.

What you're describing is much closer to psychopathy, actually. There's a huge confusion, of course, because of all the social experts online. There's a huge confusion between narcissism and psychopathy, because both narcissists and psychopaths are grandiose. Grandiosity is common to both disorders, and actually to borderline as well. And borderline, when she is or is stressed, rejected, humiliated, abandoned, in reality, or in an anticipatory manner, she becomes a psychopath too, albeit a different type, yes, secondary. So it's very confusing, which is why the international classification of diseases, which is the global competitor to the DSM, has eliminated all these nonsensical differential diagnosis, all these demarcations and borders between, and just created a single disorder.

Because people do transition from borderline to psychopathy to narcissism and back, very often, actually. And it's very confusing, because psychopaths, for example, when they fail, when it's called the collapsed state, when we have a collapsed psychopath, a psychopath who has had a goal and has failed in obtaining the goal, such a psychopath becomes very much like a narcissist. And a narcissist who is dramatically injured, narcissistic injury or mortified, humiliated in public, for example, and so on, becomes borderline, totally borderline, he becomes emotionally dysregulated, reckless, and so on and so forth. So these distinctions are very, they're not useful, you know, they're very misleading and problematic. The person you've described acts with premeditation to deceive, that is much closer to a psychopath.

Narcissists are actually pro-social, because they rely critically on other people for the maintenance of very important psychological functions and needs. So they can't afford to alienate people big time or to become asocial or antisocial and so on.

So many, many of the narcissists who act criminally or antisocially or or injuriously or actually psychopathic narcissists or pure out psychopaths.

So what would the child of the psychopath or narcissist look like? What would their behavior be like?

It's crucially and critically depends on the child and on the environment.

For example, if the parents are narcissistic or psychopathic and the grandmother and grandfather are wonderful people. So it depends on too many factors to enumerate. If a child is exposed exclusively to a narcissistic or psychopathic parent in an environment which is isolating and such a parent would try to isolate the child in order to fully control the child, would try to instrumentalize the child and to parentify the child and to abuse the child in a variety of ways.

So in many cases, children are locked into a trap with a narcissistic or psychopathic parent unable to exit and have no recourse to anyone, institutions included.

Institutions are very neglectful because they don't recognize narcissism and psychopathy as risk factors.

You know, if you molest a child sexually, you end up in prison, well, in the best case, but if you molest a child emotionally, nothing happens. End of story.

So this...

You mentioned emotional incest in your content a lot. Can you give me like three core examples of emotional incest, please?

Emotional incest is any situation where the child is cast as a partner, intimate partner. So conspiring with the child against the other spouse, you know, you're my real love. I don't love your father. Look at your father, what he's doing to me. Come and console me. Come and comfort me.

That's an example. Or breaking boundaries, for example, walking naked in front of the child or having sex in front of the child or masturbating in front of the child, which happens more often than you know.

Oh, well, you know, I know.

Well, these are...

This is a breach of boundaries, which is definitely a kind of emotional incest.

Then there is emotional blackmail. I sacrifice my life for you. You owe me. If you walk away, I will die. And so on and so forth. This creates merger and fusion, inability to separate, which has sexual dimensions. Everything has sexual dimensions.

For it was right about this, especially when you are a child and then you grow up, puberty and so on. Sex enters the equation inevitably, ineluctably. It's nothing you can do about.

So even the simple message, I depend on you for my life. I sacrifice my life for you. Don't ever leave me.

Has a sexual dimension.

Well, yeah, I mean, it sounds more like an intimate partner than it does.

And that actually brings me to another question. I know you've done videos on this before, but I'm just trying to nutshell these things as much as I can, because that's what journalists meant to do. Not scaremonger people, by the way.

Do you remember your disclaimer?

I do, yes.

No, we're not scaremongering evil human beings. We're here to educate and inform.

Anyway, so you mentioned the cerebral narcissist of which you yourself claim to be becomes predominantly asexual after the initial stage of rampant sex. I think that was in an interview in 2019 with your wife.

I don't remember these.

I do.

But so when you moved from the rampant sex stage to this cerebral asexual, the way you described it reminded me of Jean-Paul Sartre, that kind of thing. Locked in a room full of papers while de Beauvoir was frantically writing her heartbreak.

Anyway, so it kind of reminds me of that. How do you go from rampant sex to that? Where's the transition?

I mean, do you just switch off your sex drive or was the sex drive there to begin with and it just fades to repulsion?

Do you find the body is no longer serving you as it needs to serve you, therefore I've had enough now?

How does that work?

Well, we need to discuss three concepts very briefly.

One is type inconsistency, one is sublimation, and one is gray sexuality.

So type inconsistency simply means that there is no constant type.

A cerebral can become, very often does become narcissist, especially if a cerebral experience has collapsed, cannot derive supply on a regular basis or sufficient supply. It has a deficient supply state.

So in this case, he becomes somatic. I have become somatic six years ago and I'm still somatic. I'm not cerebral. So there's no type consistency.

Okay. So this is point number one.

Point number two is sublimation.

It's a process described, first described, of course, by who else?

Zigmund Freud. And Freud suggested that we convert drives, especially if the drive is socially unacceptable in some way or frowned upon, we convert these drives into socially acceptable activities.

So rather than rape women in the streets, for example, we write books. So writing the book consumes your energy, consumes your life force, the libido. So you have no libido left for sex.

And this is called sublimation.

And the third, in my view, more important concept even is gray sexuality. It's a recent concept. It's emerging. It's not clinically recognized.

But I think it describes the real thing.

There are people whose sex drive is either unstable, so it can vanish completely for years and then reappear and then vanish again, and so on. We don't know why. It may be a totally healthy state. We're not sure.

Asexuality is a subset of this, total asexuality, lack of sexual attraction to any potential partner. It's a subset of this.

And we don't consider asexuality to be a pathology, just a kind of social sexual orientation. So possibly gray sexuality is not a pathology.

So one thing in gray sexuality is that it is unstable. The sex drive is unstable.

And the second thing, the sex drive has to be triggered. While in a normal, healthy person, or shall we say normal person, the sex drive is pretty constant. And the only triggers are visual cues or whatever. And they are widespread.

So you're constantly excited and aroused in principle, in principle.

With people who are gray sexuals, they need a highly specific trigger. For example, one of the sub-variants of gray sexuality is known as demisexuality.

Yeah, I was about to mention demisexuality.

Exactly.

So demisexuals cannot have sex and have experienced non-sexual attraction until they get very deeply emotionally involved. That's the trigger.

So it's a highly specific trigger. It's not your boobs and not any other anatomical part of you. It's that they have to be triggered by emotions, deep emotions, not just any.

Yeah, I've heard about this. They have to have a connection. So would you say that's more akin to a cerebral narcissist experience of sex?

All narcissists are gray sexual. All of them, okay.

So what they have to experience, because you've got this image of a narcissist as a promiscuous predator.

But from what you're saying, that sounds more like a psychopath.

So I'm trying to separate that out.

Psychopath or sexual status, by the way. All narcissists are gray sexuals in the sense that all of them go through periods where they are not sexually active and experience no sexual attraction, clinically rendering them asexual.

So sexual anorexia, then?

Yes, they all go through these periods. And these periods are triggered by a lack of supply, this depression and dysphoria owing to a lack of supply, etc.

They become schizoid, they isolate themselves, and they have no sex drive. Sex drive is gone, end of story.

That's actually the cerebral phase.

Even for themselves, even with masturbation.

Yes, even that declines dramatically.

Although in the vast majority of cases, they do masturbate because they're autoerotic. They perceive their bodies as the supreme, ultimate, sexually arousing thing.

By the way, having sex with a narcissist, is the narcissist having sex with himself using your body to masturbate?

So you're just a flashlight, yeah?

Yeah, exactly.

So even with the somatic, somatic is focused on conquest and the chase, much less so on pleasing you, although he would be very concerned with how many orgasms you had, because it goes down in his diary.

Yeah, that's his.

So if I were to meet a gentleman out there one day, and he was concerned about my sexual pleasure as a reflection on himself, as opposed to my disappointment.

Well, a healthy person would ask you, was it pleasant? Was it a good time for you? Did you enjoy? Can I do anything else? Can you teach me how to please you? And so on and so forth.

A somatic narcissist would ask you, was I good?

Was I good? Did you come?

That's a somatic narcissist.

And a cerebral narcissist, in a somatic phase, initially, like if he's just transitioned, like last week, it's transitional, he wouldn't even ask you anything. He would just masturbate with you, autoerotically.

That sounds very cold. That sounds very cold, very, you know, you're just a, you know, like how a dog has its favorite thing to use.

Yes, narcissists are incapable of perceiving other people as separate entities because they have never gone through a separation phase with their own mothers.

They've never experienced separation. They've never experienced being separate.

So they don't know how to do separateness. They don't regard you as separate. They regard you as an object, and even worse, an internal object.

So when they have sex with you, they invest emotionally and sexually a process called cathexis. They invest all the energy in the internal object representing you, which represents you in the minds.

Narcissism, exactly as Kernbeck said decades ago, and no one listened to him.

Narcissism is seriously close to psychosis, seriously. It's almost a psychotic disorder. It's almost a total divorce from reality.

Narcissists live 99% within the thick skulls and interact with everyone and everything inside, never outside. Narcissists are incapable of discerning external objects.

So when we talk about sex and love addiction in psychology, which is a subject that I've been looking into, sex and love addiction, there is a huge preoccupation with fantasy.

The sex and love addict, as it will be termed, lives in fantasy with the love object.

Would you say people who are sex and love addicts are close to psychotic or narcissistic, or is this something separate?

Love addiction is what is known as a process addiction. These people are not emotionally invested in the partner in any way, shape or form. They're emotionally invested in the fantasy.

Or is that not like the narcissist?

Yes, the narcissist is also emotionally invested in the fantasy, but there's a major difference. That's why not all love, a minority of love addicts are narcissists.

The narcissist is invested in the fantasy because he is at the center of the fantasy. So in a way he's invested in a fantastic view of himself.

The love addict is invested in a fantasy where the fantastic object is the other, not herself but the other. That's a crucial difference.

So the love addict is invested in a process. She regards the other person as a facilitator of the process and she's invested emotionally in the process.

In other words, the love addict is in love, loves being in love. She's in love with love.

And then the partner just is a facilitator, allows her to be in love with love. So she loves him because he allows her to be in love with love.

The narcissist is a very different story. The narcissist doesn't love or is emotionally invested in any way, shape or form in his partner. His partner is there because the shared fantasy requires a replay of dynamics with the mother.


Let's take a break now and reconvene in five minutes. Is that okay?

Yep, that's fine. I'll see you in five.

See you soon.

Thank you very much.

Okay, so love addicts themselves need other people and the narcissist experiences love in a very different way.

So this brings me to another question, a very bizarre one that I hope you'll be able to answer.

I'm a bizarre person so it's very likely.

Discussions amongst girlfriends, we often have fantasies, historical fantasies, sometimes, you know, Vikings, what have you.

Is this legal?

You know, whatever it is, you know, you often before bed, you go into this sort of fantasy world or if you listen to music, you go into a fantasy world. You know, is that normal or is that narcissistic? That's what we want to know. I mean, is everyone I've spoken to about this? Are we all narcissists here?

Narcissism is not about having a fantasy. Fantasy is a psychological defense mechanism that is common to all humanity. As long as you're able to tell the difference between fantasy and reality, which narcissist is incapable of, and as long as the aim of the fantasy is the fantasy itself, the process, the story, the narrative, which is not the case with the narcissist.

The case of the narcissist, the core, the pivot is the narcissist, not the story, not the narrative. That's why it's very easy for the narcissist to discard you. It's all about him, not about you, not about what you have together with him, not about even your shared fantasy. It's about him.

So, having a fantasy, realizing that it is a fantasy, or even pursuing a fantasy, there's nothing wrong with it. Nothing unhealthy in this.

So, we can carry on thinking about Vikings and Tudors and Jason Momoa.

I regret very much that you're not thinking about Moroccan Jews instead of Vikings. But you know.

It's not me with the Vikings, it was someone else with the Vikings.

I'm relieved to hear.

Yeah, but I thought I'd ask that one for them, because the word fantasy often comes up, you know, and that interest.

Let me clarify maybe with one sentence. Maybe that will be more helpful than all my ruminations.

The love addict is invested emotionally in love. She loves to be in loveand she is grateful to her partner because he allows her to be in love with love. He allows us to experience love.

So, consequently, she loves him because he's a source of goodies, you know. He allows her to experience love.

The narcissist is, it's all about him. It's not about the fantasy. It's not about any emotion. It's not about an interaction. It's not about the collaboration. It's not about nothing. It's all about him. The partner is there because the script of the fantasy says that there has to be a mother figure there, but anyone would do. You're all fungible. The partner is fungible. Anyone would do.

So, if I were to tell somebody who I suspected to be a narcissist, or who was a narcissist, and the reason, say, all their wives left them was because they were a terrible human being, and they treated them horribly, what would that, internally, what would be going on there? Would they reflect at all? I'm pretty sure the answer is no, but would there be any type of reflection on that? Well, maybe it was me, or would it be an absolutely aghast?

How dare you suggest that I gave them the world? They should have been honored to be with me. They're all bitches.

Much more likely to say, however, there is a weight of cumulative evidence that ultimately the narcissist does hit rock bottom, and he hits rock bottom in one of two ways.

He loses absolutely everything, which has happened to me, and led me to self-awareness, and through self-awareness, to actually initiating the topic of narcissism online, at least.

So, this was a beneficial development in my case.

But there's another way of reaching rock bottom, of exploring rock bottom.

Simply too many repetitions of the same failures. So, for example, too many repetitions of romantic failures, too many repetitions of business failures. For, ultimately, it pierces the narcissist's defenses, and he goes through a process called decompensation. And then he says, wait a minute, it's my 29th relationship, and it's even I, and reality intrudes finally. And then he does.

Then not even the most hardcore resilient narcissist does realize that something's wrong with him, and does seek help, actually.

Isn't that contrary to, I mean, I think your case is rather novel. I know there are other self-aware narcissists, but it would take rock bottom, surely, for the self-awareness to be induced.

And even so, would the, you know, say you've got a low functioning, low IQ narcissist, would they be able to escape that, you know, lack of awareness?

They would probably become politicians.

No, self-awareness comes to all narcissists.

The question is, how do they react to the self-awareness?

Some of them become self-aware, and they say, I'm glad I am this way. It endows me with an evolutionary advantage. I'm the next step in the evolutionary ladder. I'm superior. I'm homo sapiens 2.0, you know.

Do you think so?

About myself. Yeah.

No, my narcissism is no, absolutely. I am endowed, not the way you think, I'm endowed with, you know, an IQ, which probably places me above the vast majority of people.

That's not necessarily grandiose. It sounds to me like fact-based.

But I do not regard my narcissism as an asset or a gift, the way many narcissists do.

You know, they would say, yes, I may be an a-hole. I may be abrasive. I may be, but I'm tough. I'm a go-getter. I'm a dare-doer. I'm a daring do. You know, I'm amazing. I get things done.

So they glorify themselves. They glamorize the disorder, thereby entrenching it.

Then it's impossible to help them in any way, shape, or form.

You go to someone like Donald Trump, you tell him, Mr. Trump, you're malignant narcissist. You have a serious pathology.

Is this the same pathology that got me to the White House and to be a multi-billionaire?

Do you seriously advise me to get rid of it?

Narcissism had become an evolutionary, a positive adaptation in today's western civilization, not only western, not global civilization. It's good to be a narcissist. It pays to be a narcissist.

And many, many parents encourage their children, and many education systems encourage students to become narcissists.

Well, if you don't want to be a narcissist, but you want to have healthy self-esteem, but you're concerned if your self-esteem reaches a certain level, then that will cross the border into narcissism, which will ultimately hurt others.

Because I think a lot of people are sort of toeing this line.

Well, I want to love myself, but when does loving myself become unhealthy? When does self-love become grandiose?

And, you know, I, as a young woman and a millennial, you know, keep away. Never, never disclose your age.

You know, that that's something I personally, and I think a lot of women my age and men struggle with.

Yes, because there's a confusion or conflation of self-love and narcissism.

Narcissism is the opposite of self-love. Narcissism doesn't involve total self-awareness and self-acceptance. Narcissism is aware of certain behaviors and definitely is not aware of its own dynamics and voices, internal voices, and cannot tell the difference between external objects and internal objects.

His reality testing is short. Narcissists are very far from knowing everything there is to know about themselves and about their place in reality and about the boundaries between themselves and reality, which is a foundational cornerstone of self-love.

How can you love yourself if you don't know who you are? That's the first thing. And the second thing, narcissism is compensatory. It compensates for a deep, deep set sense of inadequacy.

We call it a bad object internalization, internal bad object, a sense of inadequacy of being an adequacy, of being unworthy, of being a failure, of being ugly or stupid.

And so to compensate for this, the narcissist projects an image. The false self creates a construct, which is everything the narcissist is not.

This image is omnipotent and the narcissist is helpless. This image is omniscient and the narcissist is far less than omniscient.

So in a way, the false self soothes the inner self. The false self saves the inner self.

It's almost the warrior that protects the crying child in the corner.

I would use an even more stark metaphor or simile or imagery. It's a plug-in for the black hole.

The narcissist is a black hole. And it's a black hole. And around the black hole, there are swirling stars or galaxies.

These are the internal objects.

And the false self plugs into the black hole and gives the narcissist the erroneous impression that there is no black hole, that there is some entity there, that there is some existence.

The narcissist is an absence, is not an existence in any way, shape or form. It comes exceedingly close to medieval fairy tales and possession stories and so on.

These people in the middle ages, they didn't have the vocabulary that we have today, which I'm not sure is an advantage, mind you, or disadvantage. So they didn't have the vocabulary we have today.

They use a different vernacular or different vocabulary. So they would say demon possessed, or they would say it's an absence or there's nobody there.

They were very terrified, by the way, of non-entities. There's still a lure of ghosts. They're not there, really.

So this is the narcissist. It is an apparition.

Now, it's very misleading because here you are talking to me. And I have chubby cheeks on a genial and I smile and I'm sufficiently intelligent to cover up for my black hole non-existence.

Yeah.

I mean, you seem perfectly personable, pleasant, intelligent, normal human being.

Yeah. And in real life, I know how to be charming because I'm manipulative and so on and so forth.

And it's exceedingly misleading because you get the impression of a presence, not only a presence, but in my case, a dominant presence.

Yeah, definitely. I would say you have an identity. I'm looking at an identity right now.

I see how people react when they enter rooms and so on. I have a dominant presence, but it's not there. It's all fake. It's make-belief. It's an absence.

Language fails. Our language, all languages are geared towards dealing with entities, not with non-entities.

When we try to talk about zero, the concept of zero, the concept when we fail, the language fails.

It's interesting because you mentioned about this void and this black hole. And there's no way of curing it and there's no way of coming out of the black hole.

Is that not something, do you think, with progression in psychology that could be cured, that could be helped?

No. The damage is inflicted in very critical years of life.

They're known as the formative years between age zero and six years.

And many, many things that form or coalesce in these years are rather immutable, rather unchangeable.

For example, contrary to nonsense online, your attachment style in the vast majority of cases is lifelong and there's very little you can do about it.

Now, of course, the self-help industry and even the psychotherapy industries, they have a vested interest to lie to you or to mislead you or to give you false hope.

For money, yeah?

For money, absolutely.

And so money corrupts, money absolutely corrupts.

Oh, I can believe that.

Well, take the simple fact that eight out of ten psychological experiments cannot be replicated. That's a fact.

This is a disastrous state of things.

The truth is that some things that happen to you as a child are irreversible and immutable, end of story. That includes a lack of empathy. That includes your attachment style. And that includes the fact that you are not allowed to become, you are not allowed to separate and become an individual, a process known as separation individuation.

So you have never become, because you've never become, you are not as a narcissist.

In terms of attachment style, I'm going to be a bit personal now, but this is just for the interest, because this, I think, throws a slight anomaly out there when it comes to attachment style.

Say you did have a loving mother, but you were born prematurely and kept in an incubator for the first few months of your life and you didn't get that sort of skin to skin contact that is essential for human bonding. You know, would that cause an anxious or scattered attachment style or could you develop a secure attachment? Is the attachment style related less to these sort of evolutionary needs and more to the emotional needs created by society we see today?

Attachment style develops over many years. And it's more or less in its final form in early puberty. So there is a lot of flexibility and malleability during these years, and you can definitely switch from one attachment style to another prior to age 12 or something.

But having concluded with adolescence, you're very unlikely to change your attachments. It can happen, it does happen, usually following trauma, severe events, but normally not.

Now, the lack of skin to skin touch up to age six months is in principle a deprivation. A deprivation, you know, you're deprived of a very important element. You're likely to develop a depressive stance, what is called a schizoid depressive stance as a baby. You're likely to withdraw as a baby. You're likely to withdraw to be sad and so on and so forth. There will be initial issues of distrust with the mother, but if the mother is persistent and loving and caring, this will all be forgotten, and we'll have no impact later in life. So your attachment style will be determined much later.

Okay, so it's multi-factorial, it's not just, you know.

And it's a long process, it's a long process.

And would you say people with a defined attachment style, say you've got two avoidant attachments, are they better to be together or are you better to go for, not that you, you know, not that it's a first day question, what's your attachment style, I'll tell you mine. Are you likely to get on better with somebody with the same style?

There is a big debate whether attachment styles are genetically determined, inherited, because we do know, for example, of babies who are born with an inability to attach. This is called reactive attachment disorder.

Okay.

So there is a big debate about this, regarding this.

If it is genetically determined, then you are more likely to survive with someone of the opposite genetic profile.

Sexual and romantic attraction is responsive to opposition in genetic profiles.

When you meet a new potential partner, you immediately exchange a molecule, an actual molecule, which contains about 100 bits of information about your genetic composition and about your immunological system.

Because immune systems have to be diverse in order to be attracted.

Exactly, and you're attracted actually to the opposite.

So if attachment style is genetically determined, it's one answer.

If it is determined by upbringing or nurture, which we don't know yet, by upbringing or nurture, you're more likely to survive in someone who has the same attachment style.

For example, imagine that you're avoidant and the other person is secure, or this would create the situation of clinging, clinging and insecurity and neediness and, you know, the current bad dynamics.

But if you're both avoidant, you're likely to establish a long distance relationship. You're likely to meet once a week or twice a week, have fun, not to mention other things, and, you know, say goodbye for the next four days. And you're likely to feel wonderful because you maintain your personal space and so on.

These are all the avoidant.

Yeah, that sounds good, actually. Yeah, that sounds easy.

So I, if you ask my personal opinion, but it's an opinion, total speculation in this state, I think you should have the same attachment style. I think it's asking for trouble if you team up with someone who is absolutely the opposite attachment side to yours. His needs will not be satisfied. Your needs will not be satisfied. You will impinge on each other, you'll get on each other's nerves and, you know, and badly and acrimoniously.

I just gave an example of what we call insecure avoidant attachment style.

Avoidant dismissive or avoidant fearful. There are all kinds of avoidances. Avoidants should be together because they settle into a pattern that allows them to avoid intimacy. They don't feel threatened. They don't invade each other's space. They don't make demands on each other and so on and so forth.

And today with technology, actually, it's doable. You know, it's quite doable. It's unfortunate because they miss out on a lot.

But, you know, we all miss out on a lot by virtue of being, by virtue of being who we are. I'm not taller, but I've been taller and they've been an NBA star, for example.

Yeah, as he probably would have.

A Jewish Moroccan and a NBA star. It's very common. I know.

I've heard of the team, yeah.

Indeed, because of Blanca rioters.

But it's one of those things. When you talk about these things, it all seems to come back to your daddy's psychology, you know, Mr. Freud.

It's very unfortunate. It's very unfortunate that we have discarded Freud and everything that came after Freud because it was only the beginning.

And he was negated and contradicted by actually most of the thinkers later on, including by contemporaries like Adler and so on. So there's been there's been like 60 years, 70, actually, years of very, very wise minds, most of them Jewish, of course, who dedicated their their brain power to observing people and deriving lessons.

And, you know, and to discard all this contemptuously, as modern universities do, it just shows, in my view, it just shows what age we live in.

It's not, you know, get me started on the age that we live in. I mean, what's your opinion? You know, the work generation, the one that I'm supposedly a part of, being a millennial. I won't tell you upper or lower millennial, but yeah.

Yes, keep your cards close to your chest. I will.

Yeah. Two years ago, a group of Israeli scholars, sorry, I keep, you know, Jewish, Israeli, I apologize. They are all over psychology. They're unavoidable.

So a group of Israeli psychologists conducted four studies, and they came up with a new idea. It's a new new personality construct. They called it TIV, tendency for interpersonal victimhood.

They said that some people like to be victims. They adopt victimhood as an identity, and they create identity politics based on victimhood.

They interpret their lives, they make sense of their lives based on this principle of victimhood. They anticipate being victims, and they select abusers and victimizers as bosses, intimate partners, and so on and so forth, because this is the comfort zone.

And they organize their lives in a way which will ensure victimization.

So this sense of outrage that has become a sort of social media moral currency, you know, the more outraged you are, the more, you know, I am moral. Therefore, I am the best online.

It's grandiose, grandiose virtual signaling.


Another study, which was a very serious study in British Columbia, discovered that victimhood movements are compromised within months by narcissists and psychopaths who become the public face of the movement.

Can you give me an example?

There are examples in the study, I just don't recall, and I, you know, if I don't remember something, I don't say.

But British Columbia victimhood studies and so on, published, I think, also two years ago.

And from my personal experience, this is entirely true, because I have established a victimhood movement, actually.

For 10 years, I've been alone on the internet. There was no one else talking about narcissism. I coined the phrase narcissistic abuse in the early 1990s.

And then the six support groups for victims of narcissistic abuse were all owned and moderated by me. In many ways, I'm the father of the narcissistic abuse movement, although many people don't know that.

So I've had a privileged position in observing what had happened to this victimhood movement as it has evolved over the decades.

Possibly a unique position, because other victimhood movements are very young.

Yes, I mean, they change daily.

The victimhood movement, I mean, we've got a new target every day on Twitter. We don't know.

Everyone in this dog is a victim.

The sociologist Bradley Campbell said that we have transitioned from the age of dignity to the age of victimhood. So I've been able to observe what was happening.

And definitely the narcissistic abuse movement has been hijacked, lock, stock and barrel by covert narcissists.

You're okay there.

Give me a minute.

No problem.

I've been hydrated by covert narcissists, con artists and possibly psychopaths.

So I have witnessed the hijacking of a victimhood movement first hand.

Talk a bit until I recover my voice. Yes.

I also witnessed it myself as a journalist on a daily basis.

This victimhood, this what aboutism, this outrage movement, which I think dilutes the purpose of authentic revolution.

There are things right now happening in this world that are worth fighting for, such as the cost of living crisis, you know, the Ukraine crisis, children who are homeless, people who are diseased and dying.

Yet every day we believe if we write a status online and put a hashtag at the end of it, then our work is done. We are the victim. We have said our piece and we are done.

And therefore there's no real change we made in the tangible world.

Yet the virtual world is awash with bees discussing, you know, oh, well, this happened today and we should cancel such and such and we should, you know, this kind of thing.

And I feel this stops the vehicle of change. It grinds to a halt.

And therefore what happens is we're self-censoring each other to the point of silence, to the point where the people in government will no longer listen to the demands of the people because the demands of the people change on a daily basis and ultimately mean nothing.

Yeah.

As you see, I've regained my voice. Listening to you is a healing effect on me. That's useful to know.

It's nice to know I can heal a narcissist.

Yes, well, it will be the first case live on camera. We've got one. You haven't laid your hands on me, but still it works.

So a very useful concept is locus of grandiosity.

People think that narcissists want to be the best, the best, the most powerful, the richest. That's not true. They want to be unique.

So for example, being a unique victim satisfies the narcissist's grandiosity. Being a unique loser, the likes of which the world has never seen, and the world's greatest loser.

This happens a lot. You see this a lot.

It's almost become a pandemic of its own. I almost feel as if I'm at a disadvantage being, I'm not entirely sure, but fairly atypical.

So someone like Bernie Madoff would have been proud of having pulled off the greatest Ponzi scheme. Someone would be proud that his company was so huge that this was the biggest bankruptcy in 10 years.

You just have to be special, biggest, unique. And so being a victim, the moral high ground, it's a locus of grandiosity. It satisfies the narcissist's grandiosity.

No one has ever been a victim like me. I've been victimized more than you.

And when you go to victim forums or empath forums, they compete who has been victimized more. Your abuser is nothing compared to my abuser. And my story is much worse than your story. And they kind of get, and you see this grandiosity at play.

And then the competitive streak of, you know, I'm superior to you because I'm inferior to you. A hundred percent I've seen.

What I feel has gone from values of true success and true hard work, which is not to be confused, by the way. I'm not disparaging of anyone who is at a disadvantage, who has been successful. This is separate. I'm talking about this assumption that, you know, say something really terrible happens to me. Like somebody, my son likes pink. Okay. I'm wearing pink right now. It's a great color. And, you know, somebody laughs at him on the street for wearing pink and they go, oh, that's a girl's color. And then I go online in my outrage and say, my son was attacked for wearing pink. And then I become the face of this. My son was attacked for wearing pink movement.

And then this spirals into something else. And I'm just seeing a lot of this. It just keeps cropping up like weeds. And we're all standing on soap boxes, not hearing each other. And I think it's a really dangerous place for us to be as a society, really.

And it concerns me. And it concerns me that my generation is, you know, generalised into that because there are a lot of underground voices that are saying, no, we're still here. We're not covert narcissists. We're not professional victims. We do still believe that, you know, that revolution can happen in a tangible way.

I'll give you a rule of thumb. My thumb, of course. I'll give you a rule of thumb on how to distinguish true, real movements, social rights movements, human rights movements, movements which are bonafide from narcissistic victimhood movements. It's a very simple rule of thumb.

The narcissist needs to differentiate himself or herself.

So when a victimhood movement is hijacked by narcissists and psychopaths, it fragments.

And everyone begins to make a highly specific differentiated claim.

Take, for example, the asexuality movement. It started off as a unified movement based on an allegedly unified clinical concept.

There are some people who are not attracted to other people sexually, end of story.

Yeah. And that's fine.

That's absolutely fine.

But then, and that was when it was legitimate. But then it was invaded by covert narcissists, narcissists and psychopaths, and it fragmented to a million smithereens and pieces.

Now you have asexuals who masturbate or asexuals who don't masturbate. You have great sexuals who are this way and great sexuals who are actually demisexual.

So I counted, they are well over 73 sub-variants of asexuality now.

And you identify yourself by one of these 73, which gives you a sense.

Why is it so important? Why is it so important to identify with a subsection of a subsection of a sub-section?

Because it renders you unique. If you're just a garden variety asexual, there will be millions like you.

But if you are an asexual who masturbates only on first days, there's only six like you. It renders you super unique.

If everyone is striving to be unique, much as everyone is striving for revolution, surely once again, that dilutes the term of uniqueness, that dilutes the meaning of uniqueness. Then will it not be unique to be normal?

Well, normalcy has become the minority first. What used to be called normalcy? What is normal?

That's the big question, the typical question.

What is normal?

We dispense with some really bad things, like some aspects of gender roles and so on. We dispense with this and that's a blessing.

Yes, most definitely.

And the progression of women, the progression of gay rights, trans rights, all of those things. That must be said, these things in society are being changed for the better. Representation is on the rise. I see that personally as separate from this victimhood mentality.

Again, the test is very simple. If it fragments to sub-variants and so on, the movement has been hijacked by narcissists.

They want to feel special and unique. So they fragmented the movement in order to belong to a tiny subsection and be very special.

If the movement is coherent and cohesive and uniform as a unitary facade, then it's probably legitimate. There hasn't been such fragmentation, for example, in the black civil rights movement. There hasn't been such fragmentation. There's been a debate about strategies, but there hasn't been a fragmentation.

I'm a black guy who lives on the left side of the street. So my victimhood is different to yours because you live on the right side of the street.

There hasn't been such nonsense. And similarly, I think in the gay rights movement, there hasn't been such something like this.

But in many ways...

But when it comes to, say, JK Rowling and feminism, there's been fragmentation with that in terms of, you know, obviously, trans women are recognised as female on their driving licence.

Feminism is an example of an interesting...

Yeah, it's becoming extremely fragmented. The NHS website in the UK has changed, you know, people with the cervix, yet for males, it's not people with excrotum.

An article I submitted was denied publication because I refused to change two words. I refused to call students or pupils, scholars, and I refused to call pregnant women people, pregnant people. The article was rejected.

And...

I'm not surprised. I'm not surprised.

Another article I submitted to actually a UK outlet. I didn't submit. I was solicited to a UK outlet. And they inserted a paragraph without my permission that says...

They may do that.

And I'm not going to do anything. But the paragraph says that pathological racism is totally normal.

Because to attack pathological racism is ableism. I'm not kidding you. It's discriminatory. It's disgusting. You should not demonise people. You should not, you know, they're disabled. And this is ableism. This is a formal matter.

Do you feel you are disabled?

I am disabled.

But if I'm a danger to others and to society, others in society have a full right to defend themselves.

First and foremost, by spreading the knowledge of the danger.

And this is not ableism. This is self-defence.

But then, yeah, where does that line get drawn? Do we then defend the paedophiles? Do we then defend the people behind bars in prison? Is that then ableist? If they're psychopathic, and I call them disgusting, am I ableist?

Yes. According to this, yes. paedophiles need mental health care. They need care. They don't need demonising. They need care.

Although there is a subset of paedophiles that say they do not indulge in physical paedophilia, and they are seeking rights to...

This is actually the majority.

But paedophiles do need care.

paedophiles do need care.

However, this doesn't exclude the fact that we should be very wary of paedophiles and castigate them and chastise them and isolate them and spread the information wide and far that they're dangerous.

Exactly. I mean, would I tell my child, you know, this person, this known paedophile is perfectly fine to go and play with on your own for fear of being called ableist? No, I would not.

That's how far it's gone. That's how far it's gone.

It's got... I don't know. I mean, I know that society...

What the hell is a pregnant... What the hell is pregnant people? Can you explain this to me?

I can explain this to you.

I can explain this to you.

So you have a biological woman or somebody who identifies as a woman, or you have a trans woman. A biological female may not necessarily identify as a female. They may identify as gender fluid or male or...

How is this...

How does any of this have to do with pregnancy?

Only women can get pregnant. End of story.

Only biological women can get pregnant, but the term for womanhood has apparently changed.

I'm a medical doctor. Only biological women can get pregnant. End of story.

Or people that... Gender women cannot get pregnant. They can't.

No, but the word woman has changed its meaning. It has become fluid.

That's ranked nonsense, because a subset of women can get pregnant.

I'm not saying that...

Biological women can get pregnant.

Okay.

It's still not people.

Or people who biologically have female parts but do not identify as women can also get pregnant.

So yes, the definition of womanhood has completely changed in recent years, probably the last, I would say five years. It's slowly becoming to the point where the word female is not recognised as separate, as a biological thing. It's not separate from biology.

I mean, it is separate from... It's a very difficult subject for a lot of people.

A lot of people are divided on it and it has, as you say, become extremely fractured.

I mean, J. K. Rowling was one of the world's most beloved authors, still is to many people, created an empire. Now even the actors who she helped bring to fame are denouncing her, because she says that she believes that biological sex still has relevance.

The rape of language is a common narcissistic strategy. Narcissist rape language.

They arbitrarily redefine words. They mix half-truths and half-lies. They create plausible scenarios and pull the wool over your eyes. They misinterpret things you have said. If they are psychopathic, they gaslight you.

Language is a major instrument in the hands of the narcissists.

Any movement, social law, which seeks to redefine language in a way that creates controversy to this extent, must be highly narcissistic and compromised.


What do you see for the future in terms of the way that we're leaning with social media and narcissism and the way we present ourselves, professional victimhood, what do you see for the future of the next generation in terms of identity and this political outrage that seems to last about two seconds before the next wave of political outrage then surfaces?

It's not real outrage. It's virtual signaling.

Yeah, of course, yeah.

There's no real outrage. I'm calling it outrage for the sake of coming out. It's outrage between Netflix and Red White.

That's the kind of outrage.

Exactly.

It's not real burning outrage that we're talking about here. And it's rarely firsthand.

The activists are utterly divorced from it.

Previous social movements, the activists were the victims. Now we have a whole layer of parasitic, you know, a whole series of parasitic layers growing on real victims if they exist.

In many cases, they don't exist. They are invented.

But in some cases, they do exist.

But there is this parasitic superstructure which leverages the victimhood in order to obtain 15 minutes of fame and so on. Totally narcissistic.

As to the future, all the elements of the narcissistic pathology do exist right now in terms of technology. The only missing part was the fantasy, the shared fantasy. We had grandiosity. We had everything is embedded in the algorithms and the coding of technology and social media and so on. So we have relative positioning, codification of envy and rage, likes, competition in the form of likes, and so on and so forth.

So narcissism has been codified into the technological infrastructure.

But one critical thing.

We all seek it though. We all seek it.

We all have narcissistic defenses and we all have healthy narcissism.

Unhealthy as it was.

Say I post a selfie to social media where I think I look good. I want to put that there. I want feedback because within a world of homogenized beauty, you want your own beauty to be recognized.

You want to stand out.

That's not something I would have thought about 10 years ago. I would have been posting a silly picture with my friends and it would look ridiculous and the angles would be off. There'd be no filter on it. It just wouldn't be that choreographed.

But now everything is choreographed, including my own pictures, including the pictures of everybody else. We haven't got these sloppy, candid shots anymore.

It's not about life. It's about spectacle.

Exactly. Fantasy, shared fantasy.

It's a famous book, Society of Respectable. It's about spectacle.

So fantasy was missing. You had everything. You had grandiosity, you had the US narcissistic supply, you had relative positioning, you had competition, you had rage, you had envy. All the elements of narcissistic pathology were codified, hard-coded into all technology platforms.

There was one thing missing, one big thing, the shared fantasy. And now it's coming. It's called the metaverse.

The metaverse is a shared fantasy. You will be able to create shared fantasies in the metaverse with real or imaginary.

It's actually scary. Everyone will have an avatar.

In other words, everyone will become an internal object. You will not be interacting with external objects, but only with their representations in your mind.

This is total descent to narcissism. This is a total descent to narcissism.

Would you feel you fit in there?

Sorry?

Would you feel that you fit in?

If we descend into total narcissism within a decade, would you feel that you could walk among us as your own?

This has been my world much more than other peoples, long before the metaverse. But I've made it my life's mission to warn against narcissism and its effects.

Therefore achieving uniqueness.

In a way, yes.

It's kind of brand, kind of brand over uniqueness. Yes. I branded myself as a fighter against narcissism. And actually, I like the brand.

I like the brand.

Your video. It's a whistleblower.

It's a whistleblower brand. It's a whistleblower and a traitor. It's a whistleblower and a traitor.

Combined, I have betrayed my kind and I'm bringing you the news as a whistleblower.

These are not very likeable characters, the traitor and the whistleblower.

Oh, they can be in years to come. They're the ones who are often remembered.

But that has been my life's mission.

So the metaverse terrifies me because I know more than most, I think, how it is to be in a shared fantasy.

The pull of the shared fantasy, the gravitational pull of the shared fantasy, the inability to extricate yourself, the addictive quality, qualities of the shared fantasy.

And finally, most importantly, the objectification and conversion of everyone else in the shared fantasy into a set of symbols, manipulable symbols, simply internal objects.

And this just makes me want to get in a time machine and go back to somewhere else.

Yeah, I read it.

I'm a grumpy old man, of course, and grumpy old men tend to disparage younger generations. It's a hobby of us, you know, we old men, we do it. It's a hobby.

But I don't think I've been, I think I've been pretty realistic about this.

No, I think you are. I agree with you.

I think things are going from bad to worse and have been going from bad to worse for a long time, like decades.

I think we as a humanity, as a species, humanity, we've been utterly traumatized by the two world wars, which created enormous dislocations and disorientation and distrust of institutions and authorities and expertise and need to revert to something bigger than yourself.

So, you know, religion or cult.

We see it in journalism as well. Often, you know, fake news and all this kind of you know, we're fighting social media. And what people fail to recognize is that journalism is not social media. We are going to say things that you don't like. We are going to inform you of things that you don't want to hear. We are not going to cater to your algorithm. And that's why people have lost trust in the media.

I'm not saying that every single media outlet is trustworthy. However, I will say that most media outlets in most free- speaking worlds are filled with professional people in the pursuit of truth, which has then been molded by tech companies in the pursuit of clicks, which, you know, we're giving you the media that you asked for. We're giving you cats on skateboards. We're giving you, you know, the mum who got upset because her daughter's hair was cut wrong.

This is what you asked for. And then we give you real news and you call it scaremongering.

And this, you know, this metaverse is swallowing a lot of industries.

Yes, but you the traditional media, also known as MSM, mainstream media, traditionally they have been established on the assumption that people do seek the truth and value the truth. People don't want the truth. Never have actually was self delusional. People don't want the truth. They want their truth.

There is what I call malignant egalitarianism.

The belief that the truth is malleable and malleable, that your opinion is as good as my opinion and that your opinion can actually easily can be targeted as a fact.

How can we relate opinion to facts? Opinion and facts are not the same.

Your opinion is a fact, actually, and that's why it is a fact.

I don't believe my opinion is a fact.

No, but it's a fact that you have an opinion.

It's a fact that I have an opinion, but my opinion is that's where it ends.

That's where it ends.

People lack critical thinking and so on. So opinions are absolutely interpreted as facts.

But then how would you ever learn? How would you learn?

There's no need to learn, people believe.

There has been a tremendous drop in enrollment in higher education. It's fallen off a cliff, especially among men.

There's no need to learn anymore. It's fakey till you make it. It's Tony Robbins awakened the giant within.

It's the law of attraction.

Did you see Tony Robbins documentary on Netflix? I am not your guru.

It's get rich quick shortcut mentality and learning is perceived as an obstacle for the feeble minded because you end up with student debt. And learning outside higher education institutions is also frowned upon because it challenges your centrality as a generator of truth and fact.

You have an equal status to everyone else. Your facts are as important as valuable as my facts.

I feel that to be egotistical and incorrect.

Egotistical is another issue, but incorrect is a threat. It's a threat to survival, of course.

And I feel that the world that we are living in now with the financial crisis, get rich quick, only fans, drop shipping, TikTok, influencers, this is the kind of thing people need now to survive and get the revenue stream coming into their household in order to put food on the table for their children.

And people have almost had to mold themselves to the metaverse because going through a traditional path of education has left them with nothing but debt and high taxes.

So we have to mold ourselves to narcissism, professional victimhood and outrage in order to make something of ourselves and get noticed. And then maybe someone will give a shit.

Hence, has my contention that narcissism has become a positive adaptation in today's civilization.

It pays to be a narcissist. It's a good thing.

But you've also called it a stage four cancer at some point.

There is a difference between the individual good and the public's welfare.

So individuals can thrive in a society that's dying.

Actually, individuals often thrive in societies that are dying.

Look what happened during the pandemic. I mean, some of the biggest companies in the world made record numbers of sales.

And similarly, Nazi Germany, many people became very rich and so on.

So societies can decayand die and collapse and even a whole species can.

Individuals, the collective good is not the sum of individual good. That's a common utilitarian mistake.

So people are atomised and they leverage technology to secure a living or whatever.

And it's going to work, actually. It's going to work. It's like the famous Jewish joke, you know, I give you a dollar, you give it back to me. We have a turnover of two dollars. It's going to work. People are going to trade the same dollar in a variety of ways, generating a livelihood for all of them.

Ultimately, it will all come crashing down because there's no underlying value. It's make-belief. It's a manipulation of symbols. And because we don't recognise the separate existence of other people, we will lose our ability to collaborate, which was the cornerstone of our success as a species.

I was about to say the exact same thing. Is that not, you know, our social ability? Is that not the reason that we have survived so long?

Of course it is. Don't go far. Look at families. Look what happened to the family. It's contracted and contracted and contracted. And now we are at pains to maintain a family of two. And also community.

Community, well, I think. Not in certain regions of France, I'll have you know.

Community is very much alive.

Yeah, well, special areas in the Middle East as well.

Yes. But these are temporary. These are temporary enclaves because the pressures and stresses mediated by money and corporate greed and so on. No one will survive this onslaught. It's a tsunami. It's coming.

You may believe yourself isolated, but it's coming.

No, I certainly do not. It's terrifying.

We can't manage a long-term commitment to a single partner. We can't.

51% of marriages end in divorce in every single year. It's very misleading because ultimately the red figure is much higher. 70% of second marriages end in divorce and 81% of third marriages end in divorce.

The effective figure is three quarters. And we can't even manage to be with one person to compromise, to share, to negotiate. We fail constantly, repeatedly. 31% of adults are lifelong singles.

So how can we think of larger friends? And indeed, everything is falling apart. And the distrust is enormous. You saw it during the pandemic. Distrust of medical authorities, of expertise, of education. The distrust is total.

I never thought I'd see so many people refuse a vaccine.

Not only the vaccine, but advice. Not connected to the vaccine.

Analysis and so on. People rejected medical authorities in favor of quacks, neighbours, aunties and grandmas, you know. They regarded those as much more reliable sources than doctors and so on.

So we're in trouble. In trouble because we are discarding the elites, especially the intellectual elites. The repository, the institutional repository of human knowledge is with these elites. By discarding them, mocking them, decrying them, deriding them, diminishing them, we are giving up on the legacy and without that we will not survive.

There are major threats like climate change and there are terminal threats like the gender wars. I regard the gender wars a much bigger threat than climate change. And we can't get our act together. It simply can't.

You saw it in monkey books. We can't get our act together. End of story. It's doomed. That's it.

We don't know how to do it. Every day I go online and I see people who can't get their act together constantly, probably including myself.

And I think it's just, I really fear for the world in which my two sons will grow up in.

I really do. I have deep concerns about...

It takes inordinate courage or inordinate stupidity to bring a child to the world. I'm not sure what is the more prevalent, but it takes definitely inordinate courage.

And nowadays I'm talking not to make a decision to bring a child not to the world.

Yeah, I think obviously my decision was made nine years ago, but if I have my decision again, who knows? Because it's unsustainable. Even in a double income household with educated people, actually life has become unsustainable.

Yes.

That's a good summary. Life has become unsustainable.

True. We're going to transition. We're going to transition from reality and life to fantasy.

It's a defense. Fantasy is a defense. Reality has become so unbearable, so untenable, so unmanageable that we're going to migrate our mass to fantasy. We're going to remain stuck there. We will never exit.

There's no reason for you to leave the metaverse. Your company will have its office in the metaverse. You will have sex in the metaverse. You'll buy your clothes in the metaverse. You'll order pizza in the metaverse. You will never have to leave your couch. Totally atomized. You will never see a human face.

In the year 2016, a majority of men and women in the United States haven't had any interaction with someone of the opposite sex, heterosexual, men and women.

Majority.

I find that really hard to believe.

Yes, it sounds unbelievable. It sounds terrifying. That's where I had it.

Wow.

It's been very enlightening, as always, and your words and expertise never fail to amaze me.

Thank you. Thank you very much for this opportunity.

It's been a pleasure. Thank you. And I'm sorry about the incident in the middle. I had a medical procedure yesterday and I haven't recovered fully.

Oh no, it's fine. It's no worries. Thank you for coming along to do the interview anyway. And yeah, so let's all just go and down a bottle of wine or something because the world is screwed.

Or something harder. We're not going to do this. Not in public. Okay. No, no.

All right. Thank you very much. You have a lovely day. Take care. Bye.

###

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