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"Spiritual" Narcissist Casts Narrative Spell on YOU (with Dr. Lisa Alastuey)

Uploaded 9/28/2023, approx. 38 minute read

Oh, my video is off. Yep, I don't see you. There you are. Here I am.

Here I am. Sure, I have no idea why you want to see me, but okay.

Awesome, awesome. Okay, guys, welcome back. We're here for part two with Dr. Sam Vaknin.

If you want to see our previous talk, I'm going to put that down in the description box. And so you don't need an introduction. But for those that don't know, Dr. Sam Vaknin is a narcissism expert. And he is the author of Malignant Self-Love: Narcissism Revisited.

Welcome, Sam. Thank you for having me again. Second time on the same day, you're a brave woman.

Yes, yes, I'm super excited to talk about today's topic, which is on spiritual narcissism, which we seem to see a lot of that online nowadays. So can we just kind of break down what exactly would you define as spiritual narcissism? I have no idea actually. I guess it means narcissists who pretend to have some spiritual functions. So they can be clergy, they can be all kinds of healers and coaches, or they can be in the medical professions, they can be even therapists, they can be, you know, wherever people are in need of help and support, whenever people are in need of guidance. And these narcissists claim a connection to some higher authority, it could be God, it could be the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. It could be it's always a higher authority, it could be their academic degree. So they position themselves as somehow superior and as intermediaries with arcane knowledge. Like they have access to some kind of knowledge or some kind of teaching or some kind of wisdom, which would have been denied you had you not been in touch with the narcissists. The narcissist is conduit, he channels this infinite wisdom and bestows its benefits upon you. And again, it doesn't have to be a spirit, a classical guru. It can be a therapist, but the therapist will behave in a way in the same way using the same scheme, the therapist would say, you know, I train with this and this, I have this information, I've learned a lot, I so I know things you don't know. And I have ways to fix you and to heal you and to cure you. And all you have to do is come and submit and listen and obey. So the therapist would create a power matrix, a power relationship with a patient.

I'm giving example to therapists, but it's very common, for example, among medical doctors. And of course, more classical spiritual leader could be a teacher, any role model, but the two components must exist.

Number one, I have access to wisdom, information and teaching that you don't have can never have, except through my agency and my intermediation. And number two, I'm in some way superior to you could be my life experience could be my intelligence could be my connections could be one way or another, I'm superior to you.

Once the hapless, the hapless parishioner or fan or accepts this arrangement, except this unspoken rules, then we have a situation of a spiritual narcissist, and his flock or his herd or his followers or his fans or his subscribers, or his end, of course, this brings to mind social media, social media is a technological tool to amplify and enhance the reach, the intensity, the magnitude of the spiritual leaders, you know, access and ability to manipulate.

This is an actual, you know, spiritual losses, we can go deeper if you wish. It's up to you.

Yes. So, you know, what drives somebody to go into spiritual narcissism, I would assume, again, it's power, money, narcissistic supply, what are the drivers for it?

No, you just mentioned them.

Power and money are not very important to the narcissist. It's a common mistake, by the way, people conflate narcissists and psychopaths. Psychopaths are goal oriented. Psychopaths are after money, after power, after sex, afteryou know, they're after something. And if what it takes is to pretend to be spiritually endowed, or some kind of initiate, and, you know, form a community around you, if that's what it takes to get sex, then you form a count as a psychopath, you form a count, and then you get sex, you get money, you get power, the narcissist is interested only in one thing. And that is narcissistic supply.

If money leads to narcissistic supply, then the narcissist would be interested in money. If power were to lead to narcissistic supply, then the narcissist would be interested in power. Whatever leads to narcissistic supply, whatever the narcissist can instrumentalize in his quest for narcissistic supply, the narcissist would go for it.

But these are not prime motivations.

Prime motivation is attention, adulation, affirmation, being at the center, and a sense of self-importance, buttressing one's grandiosity, being godlike, to a large extent, infallible, perfect, brilliant, genius, amazing, drop dead gorgeous, whatever.

So narcissistic supply is the key.

But even so, we must distinguish three forms of spiritual narcissist between three forms.

There is the victim spiritual narcissist, there is the godlike or god divine spiritual narcissist, and there is the healer spiritual narcissist.

So start with the first, the victim spiritual narcissist is a narcissist who presents himself as the ultimate victim. Of course, anything the narcissist does is the ultimate. If he is a businessman, he is the ultimate businessman, genius is the ultimate genius. And if he's a victim, he is the last word in victimhood. He is the world's greatest victim ever.

And then such a narcissist leverages his victim. He uses victimhood as a form of virtuous signaling, he signals virtue. And it is deceptive, virtuous signaling because in effect, it's a narcissist, usually a covert narcissist. And then he would use victimhood to signal how special is, how meritorious he is, how virtuous he is, how wonderful he is, how amazing he is. And he would attract via his victimhood, he would create a community of victims around him. And he would dispense to them spiritually by allowing them to access his victimhood as a template. So he would shape the victim.

This kind of narcissist would use his victimhood to shape other people's perception of victimhood. And they would become mini satellites. They would become clones of the victim, the master victim, the not the numeral owner, the zero victim.

Okay. So this is the victim narcissist.


The second type of spiritual narcissist is the godlike narcissist or the divine narcissist. It's a narcissist that says, I am endowed somehow. I have spiritual gifts. I'm super intelligent. Maybe I have access to information, ancient information that no one is aware of. I have, I've had a revelation from God. I, you know, this kind of narcissist would establish, establish himself as deputy god. I don't dare to say the son of God, yeah, deputy god. And then he would mediate between his community members and God. And this act of mediation, this process of mediation would render him superior to them, unique. And God, his access to God would make him an extension of God.

Remember, narcissists are unable to perceive other people as separate. They don't have a concept of separateness. They don't have a concept of externality. They don't see other people as external or separate.

So the narcissist relationship with God is the same. He is an extension of God because he cannot perceive separateness. The narcissist cannot perceive himself as separate from God or cannot perceive God as external to him. He is one with God or sheonic one with God.

And so he becomes God, gradually, becomes God.

And there's a second type of spiritual narcissism, the God like narcissism.

The third type is the healer, the healer, the rescuer, the savior, the Messiah, the guy or girl who have all the answers to all your questions, all the solutions to all your problems, the one you've been waiting for, for all your life. He is there to heal you with his words, with his touch, with his presence, with his company, with support, with his compassion, with his empathy, etc. It's a play act. It's play acting, of course. It's not real. It's a simulation.

But the emphasis is on healing people, saving people, rescuing people, curing people, elevating people, transforming people.

So this is the third type of spiritual narcissism.


Now, usually they intermix, usually they're intersections, intersectionality.

So for example, it's very common that the victim narcissist would become a rescuer and a healer based on his own experience of victimhood. He would say, I have gone through this personally and I have emerged so I know how to survive this. I'm going to teach you how to heal because I have healed myself. Of course, he has healed himself. No one can heal the narcissist.

Okay. So I've healed myself and I'm going to teach you how to do this.

So the victim narcissist very often becomes the healer narcissist.

And many victim narcissists become god-like narcissists because Jesus was a victim. All the big prophets were essentially victims. Moses was a victim. He was denied access to the holy land. He died facing the promised land. Jesus was crucified. Muhammad was hunted all over the Arabian peninsula. He had to emigrate numerous types, escaping his prosecutors and persecutors. So all of them were victims.

And so it's very easy to make a transition between victim and a divine figure or victim and a prophet. Very easy.

And so there's an intersection there.

And of course the prophet heals. There's a huge element of healing in religion, not only the laying of hands. Religion itself, its tenets, its presence, its core is about healing.

So you can't really make this very clear cut distinctions. There's victims, there's god, there's healer.

No, they transition. They start as victim, they become god-like, then they heal, or they start as healers. They become god-like because they are venerated. They are respected, they're admired for their healing capacity. And then they merge it. They become a healing god and so on.

But these are the three archetypes of spiritual losses.

Yes. As I'm listening to that, what is your take on just some examples of these three archetypes?

So for example, in the news right now, we have the Russell Brand. I don't know if you're following what's happening to him and his history and how he's come into, you know, spirituality. I think he might be a little bit on the victim archetype.

And then you, the god-like archetype could be somebody like the Ron L. Hubbard of Scientology or Joseph Smith of Mormonism, where, you know, they had all the god-like premonitions and answers. And then the healer one, I think one example would be like Teal Swan. Are you familiar with her?

Yes. That, to me, is maybe falls under that category.

What are your thoughts?

We, there's a famous sociologist, and he said that we have transitioned from the age of dignity to the age of victimhood. Victimhood is an organizing principle of our reality. Victimhood is an identity, and consequently, there's identity politics of victimhood. Victimhood is also what we call hermeneutic, exegetically, principle.

Victimhood makes senseexegetit principle. It's an interpretative, explanatory principle.

Victimhood makes sense of reality, imbues life with meaning, gives you direction and purpose. Victimhood has become super critical, super crucial. People wake up in the morning and they say, "I've been victimized by my mother and then by the teacher and then by the state."

People are hell-bent on finding proof that they've been victimized by someone. "Please, god, let me have, let me be victimized by someone."

So today, definitely, nine out of ten people, if not ten out of ten, define themselves directly, indirectly, with varying intensities, as victims.

I'm sure that if I were to interrogate you and you were to interrogate me, we would come up with proof that you consider yourself a victim and I consider myself a victim. That's the way we see the world. That's the lens through which we perceive the world.

And yes, you have narcissists that combine things. For example, Donald Trump combines the healer with god. He's the god plus healer. Make America great again. So that's an example of god plus healer.

I wouldn't like to discuss Russell Brand because he is not subjected to criminal proceedings. There have been... Right, it's just allegations. ... allegations and proceedings because the police is investigating. So that's a very touching issue. It also involves topics which are not really, which have little to do with spiritual narcissism. Topics like gender wars, relations between, actually between genders, feminism, third way, fourth way. Maybe we should make a different talk about this.

But yeah, it's not so difficult. Just throw a stone and you will find someone who is a combination of two of the three of all three. It's really trivial. Absolutely trivial.

Yes, yes. I saw there was a Netflix documentary on Wild, Wild Country. I don't know if you saw it. It's about Osho. No, I didn't see it. Yes, it was very illuminating in, obviously, into cults, but like spiritual cults and just how people get, I don't know, brainwashed in the spiritual bypassing that they go through.

This is a very common term that you hear people out there.

But I do understand like people's need to feel safe. People's need to feel hope and meaning.

Because life can be tough.

And so turning to even people that are spiritual narcissists that might not be, you know, doing them well.

I guess the question is, how harmful can they be?

Always. There's no such thing as a spiritual narcissist who is not harmful. Absolutely no such thing.

Narcissism is pathological. Narcissism involves certain features which render abuse and harm inevitable.

For example, the narcissist can never perceive, as I said, other people as separate with their own needs and wishes and dreams and priorities and history and emotions and cognitions. He doesn't perceive them as separate. He internalizes them and he treats them as his property, as his extension, as internal objects.

Easy to manipulate, easy to work on and easy to collaborate with in his mind. Narcissist is totally divorced from reality and so obsessive.

So if the narcissist is in a position of authority and he's a cult leader, for example, he can impose this vision on his on his flock, on the cult members. He can force them to objectify themselves. He can cause them to collaborate with this view that they are nothing but extensions of the leader, which happens very often.

And so he converts them into internal objects and then they comply and become internal objects. They lose their agency, autonomy, independence, ability to make decisions and choices. They vanish as separate entities and re-emerge in the cult leader's mind as internal objects.

So that's one example.

Second example, when you don't conform to the narcissist's view of you the way he wants you to be, even if it's idealized, he has an idealized view of you, when you diverge from it, when you deviate from it, when you disagree, when you criticize, when you make a suggestion, when you provide advice, when you express concern, you are challenging the internal object. You're no longer in conformity with the internal object and you therefore constitute a threat, an absolute threat to the internal architecture of the narcissist's mind.

And he sees you at that minute as an enemy, a persecutory object, and he needs to punish you and he needs to reform you, reshape you so that you do fit the internal object.

So there's a lot of coercion and punitive action going around. There is no way to coexist with the narcissist in whatever setting, by the way, the workplace, family, cult, a church, you name it, friendship, friendship. There's no way to coexist with the narcissist and insist on your individuality. The two don't go together. You need to sacrifice yourself.


You see, the main advantage of the spiritual narcissist is that narcissism is a religion.

Pathological narcissism is a private religion.

What happens? The child is exposed to abuse and trauma in early childhood.

Now, abuse and trauma have many forms. They can be physical, verbal, sexual, but abuse and trauma also occur when the parents objectify the child, when they pedestalize the child and idolize the child, when they don't allow the child to interact with reality, when they instrumentalize the child, force the child to realize their own dreams and expectations, unfulfilled dreams and wishes, when they parentify the child, when they force the child to behave as a parent.

So in all these situations, it's abuse and trauma.

And the child, some children, luckily a small minority, react to it, this small minority, react to it by developing a God, a private God. And this God is the false self. The false self is omnipotent, all-knowing, it's omnipotent, all-powerful, it's omniscient, all-knowing, it's perfect, it's God, it's absolutely God.

And then there's a private religion. The child and this newly invented God, they become a church of one, a church of one.

And then the child, like every primitive religion, the child needs to make a human sacrifice. Like in ancient religions, including Judaism, you know, we need to make a human sacrifice to please the God, to appease the God, to be in God's good graces. And so the child makes a human sacrifice. The only human the child has access to is himself. So the child sacrifices himself, he offers himself to this monarch, to this deity, to the false self. He offers his true self to the false self. This is the child's human sacrifice.

So there's a religion established. That is why messages find it very easy to develop cults, sects, new religions. Very easy because narcissism is a religion. They've had a lot of practice since early childhood.

And because they have sacrificed themselves to the false self in early childhood, their form of religion demands human sacrifice.

So, as the narcissist's intimate partner, as the narcissist's child, as the narcissist's friend, as the narcissist's cult member, as the narcissist's colleague, a co-worker, you must sacrifice yourself to the narcissist because this is the way the narcissist perceives human relations. He sacrificed himself to the false self. He expects you to sacrifice yourself to him because he is now God. Now he's God. Now he's in the role of the false self. He wants to become your false self. He wants you to give up on your true self. He wants you to sacrifice yourself to him and merge and fuse and enmesh yourself with this deity which is represented and reified by him.

So pathological narcissism is a religion that spawns other religions. It's like an incubator of religions.

That's why I'm pretty convinced that the overwhelming vast majority of prophets and inventors of religion, they were all narcissists. I'm pretty convinced of this.

And of course proliferation of sex and cults and what have you, there are hundreds of forms of Protestantism alone. And in each and every one of them you can identify a lust. And of course they are new age cults, new age sex.

I believe many YouTube channels are cults, absolutely cults. They're constructed as cults. The members react as cult members.

The narcissist in chief is a deity or godlike is presumed to be, for example, omniscient or knowing.

And so there's no way to stop this process.

Spiritual narcissism is the only form of spirituality there is.

Why?

So is it a desperate need for people to belong?

Yes, I think a cult provides you first of all with a family, an extended family.

The second thing, a cult takes away the need to make decisions and make choices and to think critically and takes away the responsibility and accountability that come with making decisions, especially wrong decisions.

Right.

So suddenly you can do no wrong. Why can't you do, why can you do no wrong? Because you're not allowed to do anything.

Remember that if you are not allowed to do anything, you can do no wrong. You're pure, it's a driven snow. You become an angel.

Who doesn't want to become an angel?


This, the third thing, so there's disaffiliation, there's abrogation of responsibility and accountability and so on, suspension of decision making.

The third reason is that cults make sense of the world, imbue the world and life with meaning, direction, purpose, and make sense.

Cults proliferate, new religions emerge in times of uncertainty. They provide certainty. It's totally delusional certainty. In many cases it's sick certainty. It's nonsensical certainty in all cases, but it's still certainty.

Would you rather be light and feel more, feel stable, feel safe, or would you rather be told the truth and feel terrorized? Because the truth is frightening. The world is a meaningless accident and you are a totally meaningless accident within this meaningless accident and no one cares about you.

No one, listen.

Then those who claim to care about you, when you dig deep, you're all alone. You're alone when you're born, you're alone when you die, and here's the shocking terrifying news. You're most alone in between your birth and your death. That's when you're most alone.

And so who wants to hear this?

We create small cults all the time. They're called family.

What is a family? A family is a cult. It provides belonging, it provides a purpose, provides direction, provides meaning, provides a sense of continuity, and you name it. It provides love, very often fake and imitated, but people would rather be light. They would rather inhabit fantasy than squarely face the truth. The truth is deadly. The truth could induce suicidal ideation in 80% of humanity, and I don't think I'm exaggerating.

No one wants the truth.

What is a nation state? Did you ever meet a nation state? Did you ever talk to a nation state? Did you ever have a nation state as a guest?

There's no such thing as a nation state. It's total hogwash. It's total nonsense.

And yet we die for the nation state. We die. We are willing to die for our narratives. We are storytellers. We are creatures of a dream.

In the absence of a dream, in the absence of a narrative, in the absence of a story, we shrivel and die exactly like a plant in the absence of water.

And this is the power of cults. Cult leaders, successful cult leaders, are great storytellers. They're really convincing, not convincing in the truth.

I mean, very few people believe that reptilians took over Earth. That was not the issue in this particular cult.

I don't believe anyone believed that Queen Elizabeth and Obama, if I recall correctly, are reptilians at night, or reptiles at night.

Well, except a few psychotics. I don't believe anyone believed it.

But you know what? It's one hell of a story.

And of course, perhaps the greatest example of a story, a story, just a story, nothing else, is Scientology. It's just a story. There's nothing else.

So cult leaders and narcissists, what is narcissism? Narcissism is a story. The narcissist tells you a story about himself. This story is exaggerate. This story is counterfactual. It's not grounded in reality. It's grandiose. It's often very stupid and nonsensical, but it's compelling.

You're listening to the narcissist story, because it's fascinating. It's like sitting around the campfire with the old adventure stories of the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Narcissists are the last remaining storytellers. I think this is the secret of their power, their storytelling capacity, because they don't exist. Narcissists are pure narratives. There's nobody there. It's an emptiness, an absence masquerading as a presence.

So all that's there is the text, the narrative. And who else knows to tell stories? Nobody.

Just narcissists. We lost the art of storytelling. We lost the capacity.

That's why we don't have texts anymore. We have visual today. Today we go to YouTube.

No one reads texts. No one reads books. We go to YouTube.

It's because we've lost the capacity to tell stories. But narcissists still have it. And this is their secret. This is their amazing thing.

And so you say narcissist is a con artist. Yes. Narcissist is a psychopath. It's a con artist.

What is a con artist? A storyteller. It tells you a story. That's the con. A story that you want to be in, even though your brain tells you it's nonsense. It's a con. You still want to migrate and become a part of this story. People want to belong not to other people. People perceive other people mostly as threats. People want to belong to a story. And the bigger the story, the more they want to belong to it.

Ask Adolf Hitler. Adolf Hitler sold the German people, sophisticated people, educated people, rich people. Adolf Hitler sold them the biggest story ever, the thousand year high.

And so they all subscribed because they wanted to belong not to Adolf Hitler. Many of them thought that he's a clown. Many of them mocked his boorish manners and his horrible German accent, by the way. Many of them were mocking him. In cabarets all over Germany, they were mocking Adolf Hitler. He was not a role model or a figure to emulate. But his story was they wanted to belong to his story. And he had a monopoly on this story because his story involved him. He was a precondition for the story. So they took him as a package deal.

Okay, we'll take the story. We'll take you also.

Stories are far more real and far more important than reality or life. That's why people sacrifice themselves for stories.

So yeah, sorry. Sorry? Yeah, yeah, I was gonna say yes, it can be very life threatening and dangerous to fall prey to a spiritual narcissist.

And so yeah, suicide bombing being one example. An example of someone who prefers a story to reality. To life. A soldier is another example. Soldier fights for his country.

What the heck is a country? It's a piece of fiction. It's not a nonsense. It changes his borders. It's nothing.

And yet millions die for a piece of cloth known as a flag. We are simple manipulators. And no one is better than the narcissist doing this. This is spirituality. The ability to take you to pluck you away from reality and to embed you in a story to convert you into an abstract character in a movie of the narcissist making that is spirituality.

Yes, you know, going back to your initial definition of how, you know, they have all the answers.

And so, you know, if you are, I see this in New Age spirituality where you know, you're just not, you know, evolved yet. You're just not there yet.

Like there's a pretentious, they know it all. You don't know anything.

And that can be very manipulating and emotionally scarring. Can you talk a little bit about that?

How they activate this like spiritual facade?

Typical spiritual narcissism involves two elements.

One is, as I said, the presumption of wisdom or at the very least information, a teaching that is inaccessible to the uninitiated. So this is except, of course, the narcissist who discovered this on golden plates or the second element is that you have to go through a process of initiation, self-improvement, self-transformation, education, in order to reach this knowledge.

So there's always in all religions, in all cultures, in all sects, in all, there's always a process. You start as uninitiated, novice, then you progress to stage two, stage four, stage nine, stage, so you have it in free masonry, you have it in the Catholic church, in the Jesuit order, you have it in academe, which is a form of account. Academia is a cult, definitely.

So the progression coupled with the rainbow, the rainbow which is ever receding, the rainbow is never attainable. You never really get there because only one person can get there and that's the narcissist.

The narcissist would never share his infinite wisdom with you because then you will be like him and no one is like the narcissist. He's unique, he's sui generis, he's superior, he's godlike.

So yes, you will progress through the stages and each and every stage will cost you $40,000 of course. You will progress through the stages but you will never make it.

We call this asymptotic progression. You will never really make it.

So it's a constant pilgrimage, constant travel and it fulfills your life with goals, with a sense of purpose.

Now this is very comparable to a psychological phenomenon known as addiction. Addiction is exactly the same. The drug addict uses drugs not only and not mainly actually because of any biochemical impacts in the brain. That is a legend, that's a myth, it's not true.

The main reasons drug addicts use drugs is number one, it provides them with a social context of other drug users and number two, it provides them with a structure.

The day is structured. They have to use three times a day, they have to steal money to buy the drug, they have to mix the drug, they have to have special implements, they are like alchemists.

So drug usage is very, very similar to the way cults and religions are structured. They're structured to create addiction, increasing addiction by providing you with a social circle and by forcing you to adhere to what is known as exoskeleton, a structure that defines every moment of your life.

They never let you think, they don't let you have a free moment. You're not allowed to think, you're sometimes not allowed to sleep, you're not allowed to doubt, you're not allowed to talk to others critically, they monopolize and invade and occupy every free moment, every waking moment and every square millimeter of your mind and brain.

This total invasiveness is like an invasive species, is a hallmark of especially cults but also religion, absolutely.


Yes, can you hold for one second? I need to turn my, get a plug for my computer. Hang on one second. Sorry. No, don't worry.

Okay, I'm back.

Okay, so yeah, go ahead. No, I just wanted to say that all this idea that we need to reap spirituality of narcissists and everything will be fine. And there is no spirituality without narcissism. And there are no institutions and structures that provide meaning and narratives without narcissism.

They are in this sense, useful, to some extent.

Yes, yes.

When you study like narcissism, like in relationships, I mean, one characteristic of that is love bombing, that can definitely translate in the spiritual narcissism realm, they definitely love, love bomb you to get you to come in and so that they can get that.

Love bombing is a story about you. It's a narrative about you, telling you how idealized you are, how perfect, how drop dead gorgeous, how amazingly intelligent, how unique. It's a story about you, it captivates you, you fall in love with yourself, actually.

And that's an example of the use that the narcissist makes of narratives, the power of the narrative, the addictive power of narratives.

So in the spiritual realm, how might love bombings show up in a spiritual setting?

God loves you. In God's eyes, you're perfect. I as a cult leader, love you and hate everyone else. That makes you unique.

It's we against them. You're special, you're chosen. You're chosen if you're a Jew, and you're chosen if you're in Scientology, and you're chosen if you're a Mormon, always chosen.

Is there anyone not chosen in any of these spiritual frameworks? Being chosen is critical. This is contagious narcissism.

The spiritual narcissist infects his followers with narcissism. He tells them that they are chosen, they're special, they're unique, they're endowed, they're super intelligent because they chose him. They've made the right choice.

And most other people can't make the right choice.

And so, so he infects them with his own narcissism, and they become mini narcissists.

There's a lot of narcissism in all this, a lot.

The belief, for example, that you have a direct line of communication with God, and God takes personal care of every single thing that happens in your pedestrian, total, random, nonsensical life. That's very narcissistic. That's megalomaniacal, is grandiose. Even if God were to exist, which in itself is a piece of nonsense, but even if he were to exist, it still would have been extremely grandiose, an extremely grandiose contention to claim that God is interested in you personally.

And yet it's a common claim among fundamentalists and evangelists, many protestant denominations and so on and so forth.

But again, I want to emphasize that the narcissist's spirituality, the narcissist message is not limited to religions and to cults and to sects.

And we're giving the wrong impression here that this is spirituality.

Marxism is spirituality. Physics is spirituality. In physics, we have, it's a faith-based system.

It's all spirituality.

Wherever you have knowledge that you need to attain, and a structure of progression towards that knowledge, that's spirituality.

So the Catholic Church is one form of spirituality, but in my view, psychology is another form of spirituality.

Marxism, secular religions and ideologies are forms of spirituality. Of course, all of them were created by narcissists.

And I hesitate to say it, but narcissism is a form of spirituality. It is very sick spirituality, evil spirituality.

Narcism was a spiritual system, absolutely.

So with things like personal development, spiritual growth, self-help, does that fall under this realm of spiritual narcissism?

It depends. If it is not embedded in any narrative and doesn't imply that there is some kind of arcane or specialized knowledge that you need to gain by following a strict progression of steps, delineated in scriptures of some kind.

And that, for example, leads me to say that alcoholics are anonymous is a cult in a sense.

But if it's just a general aspiration, no, then we don't have spirituality here. We don't have cult-like elements.

But improving yourself, spiritual, improving yourself, and personal growth and personal development are not very different to saying, "Well, I would like to be promoted at work." It's about bettering yourself, changing your circumstances to fit your self-ideal, ego-ideal, your self-image, and so on and so forth.

It doesn't involve anyone external. You can work on your self-growth alone. It doesn't involve anyone external.

Or if it doesn't involve someone external, it comes from multiple sources. You don't commit yourself to a single one.

But if you do commit yourself to a single source of knowledge and follow strict procedure or progression, then there's a narcissist involved, for sure.

And again, I emphasize Marxism, academe, the Catholic Church, they're all the same. They're all involved in narcissistic spirituality.


Okay. So with spiritual growth, there's a narcissist involved.

Growth is a target that does not adhere to a specific source.

Or if you kind of commit yourself to a single source of wisdom or information and so on, and then you're willing to comply with the demands of that source as to how you should behave, how you should progress, and what constitutes your growth targets.

They tell you when you've grown, your internal feeling doesn't matter. He's going to tell you, or she's going to tell you, when you've grown up, when you've attained the targets. That is narcissistic spirituality.

Yes.

Okay.


Okay. Now, what are your thoughts on the prevalence of male versus female spiritual narcissist?

It seems that we've, looking back through history and famous examples, it seems to be much more men that have become spiritual narcissist leaders.

What is your take on that?

Well, it's much more men that have become anything, not only spiritual leaders, much more men that have become politicians, physicists, clergy. It was a man's world. I think it's going to change in the next 50 to 100 years.

And I think we're going to see an equal representation of females and males among spiritual narcissists. I think it's already happening online. We already have prominent examples of spiritual narcissists who are women. You mentioned one of them.

We do know, for example, that in the 1970s and 1980s, 75% of people diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder were men. The figure before the pandemic was 40% women.

So, men have representation of males decline to race. And then today we believe it's 50/50.

So, I think everything is going to become masculinized. It's not what I say. It's what very prominent scholars like Lisa Wade and others are saying. Everything is going to become masculinized.

And one of the hallmarks of masculinity is leadership. Another hallmark of masculinity is control and power. Another hallmark of masculinity is narratives. Men wrote the greatest narratives, strangely until the 19th century.

The 19th century, there was a revolution and women began to write the big narratives. And this revolution was a harbinger of feminism and the emergence of women on the stage.

The change in who controlled narratives presaged what had happened later. As long as men controlled narratives until well into the middle of the 19th century, women were marginalized. The minute women started to create narratives, Jane Austen and the minute women began to create narratives, suddenly the power of women increased. Whoever controls narratives controls humans. Humans are not embedded in reality. That's why in our previous conversation I told you, fantasy is not always a sign of mental illness. Daydreaming, for example, is a form of fantasy. And it's not a sign of mental illness, it's a form of mental health. So we are embedded in stories. We are creatures of dreams, as they say. And whoever controls the stories, whoever controls the dreams, whoever writes the narratives and the scripts and the plays, he is in charge or she is in charge.

So women are going to, I think women have a greater capacity for narration than men in my view. Have a greater capacity for what?

Narration, for creating narratives. Oh, creating narratives.

No, than men. So we'll see a proliferation of more spiritual narcissism. It's coming.

Spiritual narcissism and distribution of power. I'm a great believer that it is the age of matriarchy. I think we've entered a phase of technological evolution which is defined by simple manipulation and narratives.

The two biggest industries are finance and information technology. And both of them have to do with simple manipulation and the generation of narratives, basically.

Even when you write a computer program, it's a narrative. So, and women are more gifted when it comes to storytelling, more gifted than men. So I think ultimately women will take over because the power lies with the generation of stories.

Whoever generates stories is the power. So when is this? 50 years, 100 years? What are we talking about?

Yeah, I think 50 is a reasonable. 15 or 50? 50 years, I think is a reasonable time.

I think in 50 years time, women would be in control of everything that men are in control.

We are beginning to see it in education, for example. Education is the manipulation of narratives, the spinning of narratives. The education is about narratives. I mean, 100% about narrative.

Today, for every two graduates, two male graduates, we have three female graduates. Women are graduating 35% more than men.

So this is one example. We are beginning to see this in television, entertainment, show business, where narratives are very crucial.

Another area where narratives are crucial is the justice system. So I predicted within 50 years, the overwhelming vast majority of judges and prosecutors and everything would be women.

It's about narratives. Already 40% of women, which is incredible, because it was close to zero only in the beginning of the last century.

So, yeah, I think. Will the amount of manipulation and abuse be equivalent?

Yes. Yes, because the ruling ethos is masculinity, not femininity.

Women don't want to become more feminine. They want to become more masculine.

This is not me. These are umpteen studies. There hasn't been a single exception, single study as an exception.

All studies show that women want to become men. Men don't want to become women, although they have no choice, but women want to become men different.

For example, women have adopted masculine adjectives to describe themselves.

In the 1980s, a typical woman would use one masculine adjective and eight feminine adjectives.

Today, a typical woman uses eight masculine adjectives and one feminine.

Is that socialization or it just pays off? It's a strategy.

Masculinity pays, definitely pays big time.

So women are becoming more masculine. Already 43% of primary breadwinners are women and so on and so forth.

So, yeah, women are taking over.

Why do you think men are lashing out and becoming toxic and lost and all these movements or and rotates? Why do you think this is happening?

This is happening because men are losing.

The state of shock, they're terrified. They don't know what to do. They can't claw back. They're trying to claw back some of the achievements like abortion and domestic violence.

In Russia, domestic violence has been decriminalized. In the United States, abortion has been criminalized.

So that with men, there's a loss. There's the Alamo, you know, there's a lost stand. We're going to claw back, but it's not going to work. Awesome.

Awesome.

Okay. So we're getting here toward the end.


Do you have some final thoughts about spiritual narcissism?

If you need to belong, belong to people who don't pretend to be superior to you and don't pretend to have access to knowledge or information that is inaccessible to you. If you need to belong, belong to people who cheer when you evolve and grow and accomplish things and so on and don't seek to keep you low or to keep you within a structure. If you need to have meaning in your life, you need to make sense of the world, try really hard to define your own meaning. Create your own narrative. That's not me. That's Victor Frank.

To create your own narrative. Never, never accept an outside narrative.

If you want to avoid spiritual narcissism, the first thing you should do, never accept an outside narrative. No matter who, don't accept the state's narrative. Don't accept the mainstream media's narrative, but don't accept Fox News' narrative or Russell Brand's narrative or David Icke's narrative. Just don't accept external narrative, period, and generate your own meaning by asking yourself what would make me happy and how do I get there.

You can be your own cult leader and you can belong to yourself. That is the most important and first form of affiliation, healthy affiliation.

First, make sure that you belong to yourself, that you're not self-defeating, that you're not self-18, that you're not self-loathing, that you're not self-critical, that you're not self-destructive. First, make sure of this.

There's a lot of time after that to team up with people. First, make sure that you are on your own team.

And then if you're healthy, you will attract healthy people. If you're sick, you will attract sick people.

Yes, yes. Very good, Sam. Thank you so much. I appreciate you coming on my channel and talking about this. I know it can be a little bit controversial and I'm not here to ruffle anybody's feathers, but just to inspire and inform.

Sam, you've been doing that for years and I do appreciate your channel and I appreciate everything that you have put out there with regards to helping people. Thank you for having me. Thank you. Yes, thank you.

And if you guys like this video, give it a thumbs up, leave a comment down below, and don't forget to subscribe and hit the bell to be alerted to when the next video drops. Thanks, Sam. Be well. Take care.

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