The point of this page is that if you understand these people, you will have the power to resist them.
Your safety, health--both mental and physical--finances, and future depend on avoiding these people.
These are mostly quotes from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV).
|Borderline Personality Disorder|
|Narcissistic Personality Disorder|
|Adult Antisocial Behavior|
|Antisocial Personality Disorder|
|Shared Psychotic Disorder (Folie a Deaux)|
|Intermittent Rage Disorder|
|People of the Lie|
The essential feature of Borderline Personality Disorder is a pervasive pattern of instability of interpersonal relationships, self-image, and affects, and marked impulsively that begins by early adulthood and is present in a variety of contexts.
Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder make frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment. The perception of impending separation or rejection, or the loss of external structure, can lead to profound changes in self-image, affect, cognition, and behavior. These individuals are very sensitive to environmental circumstances. They experience intense abandonment fears and inappropriate anger even when faced with a realistic time-limited separation or when there are unavoidable changes in plans....
Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder have a pattern of unstable and intense relationships. They may idealize potential caregivers or lovers at the first or second meeting, demand to spend a lot of time together, and share the most intimate details early in a relationship. However, they may switch quickly from idealizing other people to devaluing them, feeling that the other person does not care enough, does not give enough, is not "there" enough. These individuals can empathize with and nurture other people, but only with the expectation that the other person will "be there" in return to meet their own needs on demand. These individuals are prone to sudden and dramatic shifts in their view of others, who may alternately be seen as beneficent supports or as cruelly punitive. Such shifts often reflect disillusionment with a caregiver whose nurturing qualities had been idealized or whose rejection or abandonment is expected.
There may be an identity disturbance characterized by markedly and persistently unstable self-image or sense of self. There are sudden and dramatic shifts in self-image, characterized by shifting goals, values, and vocational aspirations. There may be sudden changes in opinions and plans about career, sexual identity, values, and types of friends. These individuals may suddenly change from the role of a needy supplicant for help to a righteous avenger of past mistreatment. Although they usually have a self-image that is based on being bad or evil, individuals with this disorder may at times have feelings that they do not exist at all. Such experiences usually occur in situations in which the individual feels a lack of a meaningful relationship, nurturing, and support. These individuals may show worse performance in unstructured work or school situations.
Individuals with this disorder impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging. They may gamble, spend money irresponsibly, binge eat, abuse substances, engage in unsafe sex, or drive recklessly. Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder display recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior. Completed suicide occurs in 8%-10% of such individuals, and self-mutilative acts and suicide threats and attempts are very common. Recurrent suicidality is often the reason that these individuals present for help. These self-destructive acts are usually precipitated by threats of separation or rejection or by expectations that they assume increased responsibility. Self-mutilation may occur during dissociative experiences and often brings relief by reaffirming the ability to feel or by expiating the individual's sense of being evil.
Individuals with Borderline Personality may display affective instability that is due to a marked reactivity of mood. The basic dysphoric mood of those with Borderline Personality Disorder is often disrupted by periods of anger, panic, or despair and is rarely relieved by periods of well-being or satisfaction. These episodes may reflect the individual's extreme reactivity to interpersonal stresses. Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder may be troubled by chronic feelings of emptiness. Easily bored, they may constantly seek something to do. Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder frequently express inappropriate, intense anger or have difficulty controlling their anger. They may display extreme sarcasm, enduring bitterness, or verbal outbursts. The anger is often elicited when a caregiver or lover is seen as neglectful, withholding, uncaring, or abandoning. Such expressions of anger are often followed by shame and guilt and contribute to the feeling they have of being evil. During periods of extreme stress, transient paranoid ideation or dissociative symptoms (e.g., depersonalization) may occur, but these are generally of insufficient severity or duration to warrant an additional diagnosis. These episodes occur most frequently in response to a real or imagined abandonment. Symptoms tend to be transient, lasting minutes or hours. The real or perceived return of the caregiver's nurturance may result in a remission of symptoms.
Associated Features and Disorders
Individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder may have a patter of undermining themselves at the moment a goal is about to be realized. Some individuals develop psychotic-like symptoms during times of stress. Individuals with this disorder may feel more secure with transitional objects (i.e., a pet or inanimate possession) than in interpersonal relationships. Premature death from suicide may occur in individuals with this disorder, especially in those with co-occurring Mood Disorders or Substance-Related Disorders. Physical handicaps may result from self-inflicted abuse behaviors or failed suicide attempts. Recurrent job losses, interrupted education, and broken marriages are common. Physical and sexual abuse, neglect, hostile conflict, and early parental loss or separation are more common in the childhood histories of those with Borderline Personality Disorder. Common co-occurring Axis I disorders include Mood Disorders, Substance-Related Disorders, Eating Disorders (notably Bulimia), Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Borderline Personality Disorder also frequently co-occurs with the other Personality Disorders.
First of all let us try to understand Narcissism through Pronoia:
We all know what paranoia is--that's when a perfectly nice person thinks for no particularly good reason that the world is against them. Pronoia is exactly the opposite--it's when a person is perfectly rotten and abusive, and thinks for no good reason everyone is for them. Miss Piggy on the Muppets is a good example of Pronoia. She is nasty, rotten, mean, and abusive but thinks everyone just LOVES her!
DSM IV Definition:
The essential feature of Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and lack of empathy that begins by early adulthood and is present in a variety of contexts.
Individuals with this disorder have a grandiose sense of self-importance. They routinely overestimate their abilities and inflate their accomplishments, often appearing boastful and pretentious. They may blithely assume that others attribute the same value to their efforts and may be surprised when the praise they expect and feel they deserve is not forthcoming. Often implicit in the inflated judgments of their own accomplishments is an underestimation (devaluation) of the contributions of others. They are often preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love. They may ruminate about "long overdue" admiration and privilege and compare themselves favorably with famous or privileged people.
Individuals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder believe that they are superior, special, or unique and expect others to recognize them as such. They may feel that they can only be understood by, and should only associate with, other people who are special or of high status and may attribute "unique," "perfect," or "gifted" qualities to those with whom they associate. Individuals with this disorder believe that their needs are special and beyond the ken of ordinary people. Their own self-esteem is enhanced by the idealized value that they assign to those with whom they associate. They are likely to insist on having only the "top" person (doctor, lawyer, hairdresser, instructor) or being affiliated with the "best" institutions, but may devalue the credentials of those who disappoint them.
Individuals with this disorder generally require excessive admiration. Their self-esteem is almost invariably very fragile. They may be preoccupied with how well they are doing and how favorably they are regarded by others. This often takes the form of a need for constant attention and admiration. They may expect their arrival to be greeted with great fanfare and are astonished if others do not covet their possessions. They may constantly fish for compliments, often with great charm. A sense of entitlement is evident in these individuals' unreasonable expectation of especially favorable treatment. They expect to be catered to and are puzzled or furious when this does not happen. For example, they may assume that they do not have to wait in line and that their priorities are so important that others should defer to them, and then get irritated when others fail to assist "in their very important work." This sense of entitlement combined with a lack of sensitivity to the wants and needs of others may result in the conscious or unwitting exploitation of others. They expect to be given whatever they want or feel they need, no matter what it might mean to others. For example, these individuals may expect great dedication form others and may overwork them without regard for the impact on their lives. They tend to form friendships or romantic relationships only if the other person seems likely to advance their purposes or otherwise enhance their self-esteem. They often usurp special privileges and extra resources that they believe they deserve because they are so special.
Individuals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder generally have a lack of empathy and have difficulty recognizing the desires, subjective experiences, and feelings of others. They may assume that others are totally concerned about their welfare. They tend to discuss their own concerns in inappropriate and lengthy detail, while failing to recognize that others also have feelings and needs. They are often contemptuous and impatient with others who talk about their own problems and concerns. These individuals may be oblivious to the hurt their remarks may inflict (e.g., exuberantly telling a former lover that "I am now in the relationship of a lifetime!"; boasting of health in front of someone who is sick). When recognized, the needs, desires, or feelings of others are likely to be viewed disparagingly as signs of weakness or vulnerability. Those who relate to individuals with Narcissistic Personality typically find an emotional coldness and lack of reciprocal interest.
These individuals are often envious of others or believe that others are envious of them. They may begrudge others their successes or possessions, feeling that they better deserve those achievements, admiration, or privileges. They may harshly devalue the contributions of others, particularly when those individuals have received acknowledgement or praise for their accomplishments. Arrogant, haughty behaviors characterize these individuals. They often display snobbish, disdainful, or patronizing attitudes. For example, and individual with this disorder may complain about a clumsy waiter's "rudeness" or "stupidity" or conclude a medical evaluation with a condescending evaluation of the physician.
Associated Features and Disorders
Vulnerability in self-esteem makes individuals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder very sensitive to "injury" form criticism or defeat. Although they may not show it outwardly, criticism may haunt these individuals and may leave them feeling humiliated, degraded, hollow, and empty. They may react with disdain, rage, or defiant counterattack. Such experiences often lead to social withdrawal or an appearance of humility that may mask and protect the grandiosity. Interpersonal relations are typically impaired due to problems derived from entitlement, the need for admiration, and the relative disregard for the sensitivities of others. Though overweening ambition and confidence may lead to high achievement, performance may be disrupted due to intolerance of criticism or defeat. Sometimes vocational functioning can be very low, reflecting an unwillingness to take a risk in competitive or other situations in which defeat is possible. Sustained feelings of shame or humiliation and the attendant self-criticism may be associated with social withdrawal, depressed mood, and Dysthymic or Major Depressive Disorder. In contrast, sustained periods of grandiosity may be associated with a hypomanic mood. Narcissistic Personality Disorder is also associated with Anorexia Nervosa and Substance Related Disorders (especially related to cocaine). Histrionic, Borderline, Antisocial, and Paranoid Personality Disorders may be associated with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
For more information on these wretched people, visit Dr. Sam Vaknin's FAQ Web Site
Particularly note FAQ #38: The Narcissist's Victims
and FAQ #4: How to cope with a Narcissist
There is no cure.
[But supposedly they get somewhat better as they get older. Don't wait around.]
Narcissism is a drug.
To a Narcissist, you are a potential supplier.
These people need their "Narcissistic Supply".
They will suck you dry if you get involved with them.
Mostly you can't really win with Narcissists and my experiences have not been happy ones, but once in a great while, you can overcome in a skirmish:
We were talking about health related matters when one of our narcissists was listening. As a spoiled rich kid, the guy freaked at 35 years old when the gray hairs began appearing. Another man expressed an admiration for how fit this guy was. It was immensly satisfying to relate the perspective that "he is pleasingly plump" right in front of him. He was like an old wet hen the rest of the day. The rest of us were quite content.... [Later on, he told me, "Don't toy with me!" and meant it in a most threatening way.] He is now married to a flight attendant and I hear throws the most cultural of dinner parties for her airline pals. You would have been amazed at the wedding gift registry.
Sadly, after this was written, the man had a psychotic break and is now bipolar.
This category can be used with the focus of clinical attention is adult antisocial behavior that is not due to a mental disorder (e.g., Conduct Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder, or an Impulse-Control Disorder). Examples include the behavior of some professional thieves, racketeers, or dealers in illegal substances.
The essential feature of Conduct Disorder is a repetitive and persistent pattern of behavior in which the basic rights of others or major age-appropriate societal norms or rules are violated. These behaviors fall into four main groupings: Aggressive conduct that causes or threatens physical harm to other people or animals, nonaggressive conduct that causes property loss or damage, deceitfulness or theft, and serious violations of rules. Three (or more) characteristic behaviors must have been present during the past 12 months, with at least one behavior present in the past 6 months. The disturbance in behavior causes clinically significant impairment in social, academic, or occupational functioning. Conduct Disorder may be diagnosed in individuals who are old than age 18 years, but only if the criteria for Antisocial Personality Disorder are not met. The behavior pattern is usually present in a variety of settings such as home, school, or the community. Because individuals with Conduct Disorder are likely to minimize their conduct problems, the clinician often must rely on additional informants. However, the informant's knowledge of the child's conduct problems may be limited by inadequate supervision or by the child's not having revealed them.
Children or adolescents with this disorder often initiate aggressive behavior and react aggressively to others. They may display bullying, threatening, or intimidating behavior; initiate frequent physical fights; use a weapon that can cause serious physical harm; be physically cruel to people or animals; steal while confronting a victim; or force someone into sexual activity. Physical violence may take the form of rape, assault, or in rare cases, homicide.
Deliberate destruction of others' property is a characteristic feature of this disorder and may include deliberate fire setting with the intention of causing serious damage or deliberately destroying other people's property in other ways.
Deceitfulness or theft is common and may include breaking into someone else's house, building, or car; frequently lying or breaking promises to obtain goods or favors or to avoid debts or obligations (e.g., "conning" other people); or stealing items of nontrivial value without confronting the victim.
Characteristically, there are also serious violations of rules by individuals with this disorder. Children with this disorder often have a pattern, beginning before age 13 years, of staying out late at night despite parental prohibitions. There may be a pattern of running away from home overnight. To be considered a symptom of Conduct Disorder, the running away must have occurred at least twice (or only once if the individual did not return for a lengthy period). Runaway episodes that occur as a direct consequence of physical or sexual abuse do not typically qualify for this criterion. Children with this disorder may often be truant from school, beginning prior to age 13 years. In older individuals, this behavior is manifested by often being absent form work without good reason....
Individuals with Conduct Disorder may have little empathy and little concern for the feelings, wishes, and well-being of others. Especially in ambiguous situations, aggressive individuals with this disorder frequently misperceive the intentions of others as more hostile and threatening than is the case and respond with aggression that they then feel is reasonable and justified. They may be callous and lack appropriate feelings of guilt or remorse. It can be difficult to evaluate whether displayed remorse is genuine because these individuals learn that expressing guilt may reduce or prevent punishment. Individuals with this disorder may readily inform on their companions and try to blame others for their own misdeeds. Self-esteem is usually low, although the person may project an image of "toughness." Poor frustration tolerance, irritability, temper outbursts, and recklessness are frequent associated features. Accident rates appear to be high in individuals with Conduct Disorder than those without it....
...Conduct Disorder may be associated with lower than average intelligence. Academic achievement, particularly in reading and other verbal skills, is often below [way below] the level expected on the basis of age and intelligence and may justify the additional diagnosis of a Learning or Communication Disorder....
The essential feature of Antisocial Personality Disorder is a pervasive pattern of disregard for, and violation of, the rights of others that begins in childhood or early adolescence and continues into adulthood.
This pattern has also been referred to as psychopathy, sociopathy, or dyssocial personality disorder. Because deceit and manipulation are central features of Antisocial Personality Disorder, it may be especially helpful to integrate information acquired from systematic clinical assessment with information collected from collateral sources.
For this diagnosis to be given, the individual must be at least age 18 year and must have had a history of some symptoms of Conduct Disorder before age 15 years. Conduct Disorder involves a repetitive and persistent pattern of behavior in which the basic rights of others or major age-appropriate societal norms or rules are violated. [As noted above]....
The pattern of antisocial behavior continues into adulthood. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder fail to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behavior. They may repeatedly perform acts that are grounds for arrest or pursuing illegal occupations. Persons with this disorder disregard the wishes, rights, or feelings of others. They are frequently deceitful and manipulative in order to gain personal profit or pleasure (e.g., to obtain money, sex, or power). They may repeatedly lie, use an alias, con others, or malinger. A pattern of impulsivity may be manifested by a failure to plan ahead. Decisions are made on the spur of the moment, without forethought, and without consideration for the consequences to self or others; this may lead to sudden changes of jobs, residences, or relationships. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder tend to be irritable and aggressive and may repeatedly get into physical fights or commit acts of physical fights or commit acts of physical assault (including spouse beating or child beating). Aggressive acts that are required to defend oneself or someone else are not considered to be evidence for this item. These individuals also display a reckless disregard for the safety of themselves or others. This may be evidenced in their driving behavior (recurrent speeding, driving while intoxicated, multiple accidents). They may engage in sexual behavior or substance use that has high risk for harmful consequences. They may neglect or fail to care for a child in a way that puts the child in danger.
Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder also tend to be consistently and extremely irresponsible. Irresponsible work behavior may be indicated by significant periods of underemployment despite available job opportunities, or by abandonment of several jobs without a realistic plan for getting another job. There may also be a pattern of repeated absences from work that are not explained by illness either in themselves or in their family. financial irresponsibility is indicated by acts such as dependents on a regular basis. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder show little remorse for the consequences of their acts. They may be indifferent to, or provide a superficial rationalization for, having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from someone (e.g., "life's unfair," "losers deserve to lose," or "he had it coming anyway"). These individuals may blame the victims for being foolish, helpless, or deserving their fate; they may minimize the harmful consequences of their actions; or they may simply indicate complete indifference. They generally fail to compensate or make amends for their behavior. They may believe that everyone is out to "help number one" and that one should stop at nothing to avoid being pushed around.
The antisocial behavior must not occur exclusively during the course of Schizophrenia or a Manic Episode.
Associated Features and Disorders
Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder frequently lack empathy and tend to be callous, cynical, and contemptuous of the feelings, rights, and sufferings of others. They may have an inflated and arrogant self-appraisal (e.g., feel that ordinary work is beneath them or lack a realistic concern about their current problems or their future) and may be excessively opinionated, self-assured, or cocky. They may display a glib, superficial charm and can be quite voluble and verbally facile (e.g., using technical terms or jargon that might impress someone who is unfamiliar with the topic). Lack of empathy, inflated self-appraisal, and superficial charm are features that have been commonly included in traditional conceptions of psychopathy and may be particularly distinguishing of Antisocial Personality Disorder in prison or forensic settings where criminal, delinquent, or aggressive acts are likely to be nonspecific. These individuals may also be irresponsible and exploitative in their sexual relationships. They may have a history of many sexual partners and may never have sustained a monogamous relationship. They may be irresponsible as parents, as evidenced by malnutrition of a child, an illness in the child resulting from a lack of minimal hygiene, a child's dependence on neighbors or nonresident relatives for food or shelter, a failure to arrange for a caretaker for a young child when the individual is away from home, or repeated squandering of money required for household necessities. These individuals may receive dishonorable discharges from the armed services, may fail to be self-supporting, may become impoverished or even homeless, or may spend many years in penal institutions. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder are more likely than people in the general population to die prematurely by violent means.
Individuals with this disorder may also experience dysphoria, including complaints of tension, inability to tolerate boredom, and depressed mood. They may have associated Anxiety Disorders, Depressive Disorders, Substance-Related Disorders, Somatization Disorder, Pathological Gambling, and other disorders of impulse control. Individuals with Antisocial Personality Disorder also often have personality features that meet criteria for other Personality Disorders, particularly Borderline, Histrionic, and Narcissistic Personality Disorders. The likelihood of developing Antisocial Personality Disorder in adult life is increased if the individual experienced an early onset of Conduct Disorder (before age 10 years) and accompanying Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Child abuse or neglect, unstable or erratic parenting, or inconsistent parental discipline may increase the likelihood that Conduct Disorder will evolve into Antisocial Personality Disorder.
The essential feature of the Shared Psychotic Disorder (Folie a Deaux) is a delusion that develops in an individual who is involved in a close relationship with another person (sometimes termed the "inducer" or "the primary case") who already has a Psychotic Disorder with prominent delusions. The individual comes to share the delusional beliefs of the primary case in whole or in part. The delusion is not bett4er accounted for by another Psychotic Disorder (e.g., Schizophrenia) or a Mood Disorder With Psychotic Features and is not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g, amphetamine) or a general medical condition (e.g., brain tumor) although other diagnoses may include Delusional Disorder or Mood Disorder With Psychotic Features. The content of the shared delusional beliefs may be dependent on the diagnosis of the primary case and can include relatively bizarre delusions (e.g., that radiation is being transmitted into an apartment from a hostile foreign power, causing indigestion and diarrhea), mood-congruent delusions (e.g., that the primary case will soon receive a film contract for $2 million, allowing the family to purchase a much larger home with a swimming pool), or the nonbizarre delusions that are characteristic Delusional Disorder (e.g., the FBI is tapping the family telephone and trailing family members when they go out). Usually the primary case in Shared Psychotic Disorder is dominant in the relationship and gradually imposes the delusional system on the more passive and initially healthy second person. Individuals who come to share delusional beliefs are often related by blood or marriage and have lived together for a long time, sometimes in relative social isolation. If the relationship with the primary case is interrupted, the delusional beliefs of the other other individual usually diminish or disappear. Although most commonly seen in relationships of only two people, Shared Psychotic Disorder can occur among a larger number of individuals, especially in family situations in which the parent is the primary case and the children, sometimes to varying degrees, adopt the parent's delusional beliefs. Individuals with this disorder rarely seek treatment and usually are brought to clinical attention when the primary case receives treatment.
Associated Features and Disorders
Aside from the delusional beliefs, behavior is usually not otherwise odd or unusual in Shared Psychotic Disorder. Impairment is often less severe in the individual with Shared Psychotic Disorder than in the primary case.
Anger as an emotion is often what psychiatrists call ego-syntonic: It is an expected, and acceptable, part of the way to feel. Anger, in short, is a descriptor of the self people do not mind having. Depression we reject: "I'm depressed" is neither a good way to feel, or a good thing to say about ourselves. But "I am angry" sounds strong, righteous, justified....
Finally, the epidemic of violence in America that we have sen in the past twenty years inevitably casts a new light upon the value of anger. Assaults, murders, kidnappings, rapes: These crimes are not committed by people in calm and sanguine frames of mind. If we were to subject every prison inmate to psychiatric scrutiny, the category of intermittent rage disorder would begin to look very real indeed....
"We are witnessing an increase in anger and aggression in contemporary sports not because of instinct, but because of rewards. In many cases, angry display have become good business for management and successful strategies for players."
Anger always has a target; angry people are angry about something....
In an emotional highjacking, an excess of mental noise throws the higher brain centers off-line, allowing deeper, more primitive structures to seize control. More specifically, once an event causes the brain to lose its rhythm, to stumble out of synch, the frontal lobes of the cortex decline in function, allowing the more engaged and enranged amygdala to take over. The cortex is the most recently evolved and thus "highest" part of the brain; it is the seat of reason. The amygdala belongs to the evelutionarily older limbic system; it is called the reptilian brain and is the seat of emotion. In a tantrum, emotion highjacks reason; amygdala highjacks cortex.
When this happens, we lose the ability to organize our thoughts; we do not consider the consequences of our actions, we just act. Rodin's sculpture of The Thinker is an idealized view of thepondering human who is able to consider life rationally. The statue is in may ways a celebration of what might be considered our hiest evolutionary achievement, the most advanced capacity of our brains. But when the anger takes over we essentially lose our thinker function. Unable to pause and ponder, we simple react, much like a hound dog when it catches the scent of game. Something automatic kicks to life, our instincts take over, and we are off.
This loss of the thinker brain occurs when we are overwhelmed with noise, either real-world or symbolic. In the face of too much mental noise, our older defense mechanisms react by propelling us into the fight-or-flight mode. This can happen for many environmental reasons, such as too much stress, too much physical noise, too much heat, too little blood sugar, and so on. Almost any type of excess or extreme--physical, mental, or social--can overcome the thinker brain....
The hypofrontality of may rage disorders brings with it another fascinating and counterintuitive implication. Poor frontal-lobe function means that there may be a biological reason why people hold on to their anger: A person can become addicted to his rage. Addictive behavior is addictive because it is self-medicating. That is, and addictive behavior (like compulsive gambling, compulsive shopping, compulsive rage) maes the person acting that way feel better because it positively affects, at least for a time, specific states in the brain.
Anger may make a person feel better because it affects the brain at a purely biological level. Anger may function in much the same way stimulants such as Ritalin and Dexedrine do: Anger can bring sluggish areas in the brain up to speed....
By Dr. M. Scott Peck
A taste from a couple of reviewers off of Amazon.com:
firstname.lastname@example.org (Allan Gathercoal) from Atlanta , September 27, 1998
The core of evil is ego-centricity
"Evil is the exercise of power, the imposing of one's will upon others by overt or covert coercion". "The core of evil is ego-centricity, whereby others are sacrificed rather than the ego of the individual." These words and the following analysis that Scott Pecks gives us into the world of evil are sorely needed now in America. At the heart of our political and moral melt down is the force of evil.
According to Dr. Peck (psychology) the ego-centric person is utterly dedicated to preserving their self serving image. They cultivate an image of being a good, right, God fearing citizen. The specialize in self-deceit and thus are People of the Lie.
Scott Peck is best know for his famed book The Road Less Traveled where Peck argues that there is a link between personal growth, spirituality, and basic mental health. In People of the Lie Scott Peck see evil as the antithesis to the very goodness and life that normal, healthy people seek. He writes this book to raise the aware that evil exists as an entity and force in the world and calls his readers to take evil far more seriously. Recommended.
Allan Gathercoal (email@example.com) from Atlanta, Georgia , September 21, 1998
Peck's insight into the world of evil is sorely needed.
"Evil is the exercise of power, the imposing of one's will upon others by overt or covert coercion". "The core of evil is ego-centricity, whereby others are sacrificed rather than the ego of the individual." These words and the following analysis that Scott Peck gives us into the world of evil are sorely needed now in America. At the heart of our political and moral meltdown is the force of evil. According to Dr. Peck (psychology) ego-centric persons are utterly dedicated to preserving their self-serving image. They cultivate an image of being a good, right, God-fearing citizens. They specialize in self-deceit and thus are People of the Lie.
Scott Peck is best known for his famed book The Road Less Traveled where Peck argues that there is a link between personal growth, spirituality, and basic mental health. In People of the Lie Scott, Peck see evil as the antithesis to the very goodness and life that normal, healthy people seek. He writes this book to raise the awareness that evil exists as an entity and force in the world and calls his readers to take evil far more seriously.
It should be noted that Psychopaths actually have brain waves different from normal humans. This is something that is measurable and should be considered a physiological problem with brain functioning--it is not, strictly speaking a personality disorder. Psychopaths are generally satisfied with themselves and their way of life and don't want to change. One of the things that does seem to help is for them to build vocabulary and language skills. You will often find psychopaths have very low vocabularies. As they build their language skills, some of the higher cortical functions of the brain are altered and their condition seems to improve.
[Anyone who suspects they may have a problem and may be a Psychopath might be tested by Dr. Robert Hare in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. There are objective tests that can ascertain whether or not a person is a Psychopath, because the brain is "wired". Truly, it's not your fault! It doesn't make us like you any better, though!]
These are my favorite people--to completely avoid.