Empaths, Apaths, and Sociopaths; The Warriors of Transcendence – 3

Sociopaths (Psychopaths)

This category appears to apply to approximately 4% of humanity. By many definitions and speculations that I have been exposed to, it falls under the broader umbrella category of Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD), which may be defined as “a pervasive pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others.” At the least, sociopathy is a very close cousin.  Key characteristics of APD are:

1) A failure to conform to social norms

2) A prominent lack of remorse

3) A penchant for deceit

4) Predominant impulsivity

5) Aggressiveness and irritability

6) Disregard for the safety of all

7) Persistent irresponsibility

Specific descriptions and a universal definitive definition of Sociopathy still appear to be somewhat lacking in the literature that I have been able to review. Nonetheless, certain characteristics are agreed upon as being extremely prominent, highly suggestive, and almost definitive for the characterization. Scales of sociopathic traits and tendencies seem to have become the most current approach in psychoanalysis and definitive diagnosis of the condition. The PCL-R (Hare) and the Psychopathic Deviate of the MMPI are examples of such qualifiers that remain debatable. The following “markers” or “identifiers” appear to be the universally or almost universally accepted core components of sociopathy regardless of other variabilities.

1) Extreme superficial charm (sociopathic charisma)

2) Lack of empathy – specifically, Hot Empathy – and shallowness of emotion

3) An absence of conscience

4) An Incapability of love

5) Excessive need for constant stimulation and drama (bored easily)

6) A grandiose sense of self worth

7) Pathological lying

7) Conducts parasitic relationships with their friends including passive aggressive behavior

8) Specifically “Targets” an empath or empaths

9) Focuses only on trumping and dominating others

10) Bonds with others through mimicry of similarity and intimacy

11) Displays unpredictable fits of rage

12) Fakes or exaggerates illness

13) Manipulates people via sexual engagement

14) Suicide threats and proclamations of intent are rarely carried out

15) Sex life is trivial, mundane, impersonal, and without meaning

16) Incapable of extended life plans and goals

In addition and/or perhaps in more specific qualification of the above traits, the further behaviors and patterns are also commonly associated with the sociopath.

1) Described to have piercing eyes and a mesmerizing gaze

2) Often demanding of undue sympathy

3) Highly likely to lie about credentials, education, and their past achievements

4) Enjoyment at bullying co-workers or competitors

5) Often emotionally bullying to intimate partners, eventually isolating and alienating them from others

6) Often employing pets as props to appear sensitive and caring

7) May run rings around therapists

8) Often manipulatively isolate their children from the other spouse or ex-parent

9) Frequently have a sociopathic parent/genetic link

10) Fond of getting others to perform

taboo behavioral acts

11) Able to manifest appearance of ultra-attention and ultra-fun persona towards whomever when preferred for manipulation

12) Display exceptionally quick decision making when confronted with high conflict scenarios

13) High intellect

The penultimate goal of the sociopath is to dominate everyone. It isn’t really a choice per se. They just believe that that is the endpoint of existence. They do not feel or perceive love in any manner, thus it is also a non-existent force in their life. The same is true for conscience and empathy. The concept and ramifications of both on their behavior and their perception is totally lacking. Later in this piece, I will discuss possible “cross-over” states or lower degrees of sociopathology that I believe to be hybrids between empathy and sociopathy, but for the moment, let the discussion remain more pure and representative of the common perceptions of the more archetypal sociopath categorization.

The primary trigger for sociopaths displaying seemingly unprovoked fits of rage seems to be related to them being trumped, played, or outmaneuvered by another. This may be related to present actuality or might be just a present manifestation (seemingly occurring out of nowhere) resulting from the flare up in their own mind from a memory recall of such an event in the past. Other stimuli, which one would expect to induce rage in most normal people, often produce a minimal effect on a sociopaths state of temperament.

Sociopaths are often experts in mimicry and most people are unable to see, identify, or believe that they exist as they do. Almost everyone looks and perceives the world through their own emotions and belief systems, thus the empaths and the apaths tend to remain ignorant and/or skeptical about a person being capable of truly being a sociopath. In actuality, empaths and apaths are likely to choose self-delusion via some form of excuse or excuses to avoid acknowledgement of a sociopaths existence, including their intricate schemes and behavior. The Sociopathic Triad specifically relates to this dynamic and will be discussed in detail in a later segment of this piece. The sociopaths do not possess empathy (hot) or emotion, but they are supremely better than most at recognizing such in others. This is a primary key to their super-predator state of mimicry and manipulation.

In addition, these super-predators are not discouraged by punishment or negative consequence. Scientific evidence has displayed excessive dopamine release (4 times the norm) in their brains associated with a hypersensitive reaction to the attainment of “rewards.” The most common forms of these rewards are money, sexual conquest, trumping an empath, and the enjoyment of intoxicating stimulants. An obvious correlation with addiction or obsessive compulsive behavior in the process of attainment of these rewards frequently, though not always, exists.

In the next segment, I will discuss the interactions of empaths, apaths, and sociopaths in greater detail.

To be continued…

Cribb          2015

The Veterinarian – Exchanges and Dealing with the Fear Behind it All (Part 2 of 3)

supernerdboywarriorpoetworld

He walks into the exam room to perform a euthanasia. He knows that the patient is a large old dog that has suffered from arthritis for a while and has finally progressed to the point of not being able to walk anymore. He knows that this is one of the more common issues that tend to eventually “get” the large and giant breed dogs before natural death, requiring appropriate and intervening euthanasia. It is a sad but true fact that must be accepted under certain circumstances. Sometimes though, people tend to create their own circumstances, and they can be quite creative and convincing in this seeming self-delusion. He knows that the more a person tries to sell him on the euthanasia of their own pet, the more likely it is that they have had to sell themselves on the same product. He doesn’t like hearing that sales pitch. Death is…

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Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 65

We shall always tend to consider people’s distress objectively—that is, to place ourselves, with our own wants and sensibilities, in their conditions, and then to examine what occasions we should find in them for experiencing happiness or unhappiness. This method of looking at things, which seems objective because it ignores the variations in subjective sensibility, is, of course, the most subjective possible, since it puts one’s own mental states in the place of many others, unknown though they may be. Happiness, however, is something essentially subjective. No matter how much we may shrink with horror from certain situations—of a galley-slave in antiquity, of a peasant during the Thirty Year’s War, of a victim of the Holy Inquisition, of a Jew awaiting a pogrom—it is nevertheless impossible for us to feel our way into such people (I would argue for the highly aware/developed and stable empath that it is possible, though highly unlikely and highly improbable in general in regards to the masses – Cribb interjection) —to divine the changes which original obtuseness of the mind, a gradual stupefying process, the cessation of expectations, and cruder or more refined methods of narcotization have produced upon their receptivity to sensations of pleasure and unpleasure. Moreover, in the case of the most extreme possibility of suffering (I will add “experiencing” as a possible substitute – Cribb interjection), special mental protective devices are brought into operation.

Civilization and Its Discontents

Sigmund Freud          1930

The Veterinarian – Exchanges and Dealing with the Fear Behind it All (Part 2 of 3)

He walks into the exam room to perform a euthanasia. He knows that the patient is a large old dog that has suffered from arthritis for a while and has finally progressed to the point of not being able to walk anymore. He knows that this is one of the more common issues that tend to eventually “get” the large and giant breed dogs before natural death, requiring appropriate and intervening euthanasia. It is a sad but true fact that must be accepted under certain circumstances. Sometimes though, people tend to create their own circumstances, and they can be quite creative and convincing in this seeming self-delusion. He knows that the more a person tries to sell him on the euthanasia of their own pet, the more likely it is that they have had to sell themselves on the same product. He doesn’t like hearing that sales pitch. Death is natural and pure and a necessity of existence. It should be respected and acknowledged for the actual product it is. It should not be marketed or sold.

The veterinarian walks into the room and makes some small talk with the owners. He reaches out to them with a mixture of empathy, understanding, and support. Then, he changes gears a little and reviews the basic information with them that pertains to the act itself and what they should expect as the process unfolds. He is caught somewhat off guard when the wife excitedly volunteers “We tried to give him the medicine you gave us for his arthritis, but it made him SO sick…..he just acted ALL DRUGGED OUT…ALL THE TIME..and he didn’t do well with it at all….at all. He just couldn’t take it….AT ALL.”

The veterinarian silently sighs to himself. Marketing…..marketing, he thinks…I really hate marketing. He knows that the whole charade may sound like an innocent and factual statement to those who don’t witness the patterns over and over and over, but also that to those that do, the marketing and the sales pitch become blatantly obvious and excruciatingly painful to entertain in their eager-to-infect-delusion. He could literally finish their marketing sentences for them if he wanted to. And typically preceding the actual euthanasia marketing, you always get the “WE DID EVERYTHING we could, but the medicine YOU gave us didn’t work…..it actually was HIGHLY INEFFECTIVE and it made him WORSE” marketing. The veterinarian knows that sometimes this dynamic is factual and just the objective limitation of life coupled with the failure of reasonable intervention. Other times, with simpler diseases and in less pathologic states, it is just an excuse to say “we can’t afford the medicine” or “we really don’t care enough about our pet to go to the trouble of giving the meds.” The veterinarian can accept these facts no matter how unpleasant they may sometimes be. The facts aren’t the real problem. The real problem for him is the noisy tormenting sales pitch that just obliterates all true respect for a life that was supposedly loved. He tries to clear the knowledge from his mind. He tries, but a few related words slip from his mouth “When was that? How long ago did we try the meds? And it didn’t help at all?”

The wife replies ” Maybe a year or so ago. He just did…SO, SO bad on those meds. They really missed him up. We decided to just take him off of them and not give him anything at all. He slowly got worse and over the last week or two, he hasn’t been able to really walk or get up at all.” The veterinarian is intimately familiar with the drug that the owner claims adversely affected her dog. He knows the drug is safe and effective. It is the most effective drug in his practice in regards to improving the quality of life of any of his patients. Oh, but he also knows that the worshippers of the internet, seeking the sacrament for their own fear or apathy in action, can certainly find enough digital speculation to blasphemy any drug on the market….even as they crucify their own dog while they do so.

The veterinarian yields. All of the rational rebuttals in the world are not enough. All of the logical questions about what specifically happened to the dog when the meds were given and why no one informed the veterinarian of the situation a year ago, are not enough. The excuses fabricated through marketing and delusion, have no desire to be challenged or investigated in any way with rational logic. The veterinarian says “I’m sorry that the meds did not help him before and that you have to say goodbye today, but we are going to get through this together and make sure he doesn’t suffer anymore in any way. My assistant and I are going to sit down next to you and Boomer to perform the euthanasia. You don’t need to move at all. Feel free to hug or pet him the whole time if you want to. We are just going to gently hold his head and his leg during the injection. Once I give him the solution, he will pass in about 30-60 seconds and just fall asleep. My assistant will leave after we give the injection, but I am going to sit in here with you and Boomer for a little while afterward.”

The euthanasia is performed without complication or adverse event, and Boomer falls gracefully asleep. The assistant quietly leaves the exam room while the veterinarian remains seated immediately next to the body. The veterinarian is calm and relaxed in his posture. He looks at Boomer’s body and pets his head and neck a few times before resting both of his hands in his own lap. The owners sit close by, touching Boomer’s body, each in their own meaningful way. This solace lasts about sixty seconds.

“When will he pass? How long will it take? How do you know?” sputters from the wife’s lips as she breaks the solace.

The veterinarian replies softly and compassionately “They usually pass within thirty seconds to a minute after the injection, but it can vary a little. I always like to sit with them for a short while afterwards, and then check their heart with the stethoscope. I am pretty sure Boomer has already passed. He went very easily…..very peacefully.”

Boomer’s mom snaps back quickly and reflexively. It was almost like she had been waiting for the opportunity. “I don’t think so. I’m sure he’s still alive.” She hastily moves her hand to Boomer’s chest and presses downward. “I can still feel his heart beating.”

Her husband has somewhat of a blank and numb look on his face, but you can see his will of empathy attempting to be expressed, attempting to connect with her. Sadly, it has a tainted timid aura of fear from previous rejection. He does not challenge the previous suggestion of the veterinarian either.

The veterinarian tries to keep the peace and take the bullet for the husband without destabilizing himself. “I am pretty sure Boomer has passed. I really believe that. He may be displaying some normal postmortem muscle spasm activity and you may have felt some twitching with your hand, but on the off-chance that his heart is still beating, it will stop very soon. Again, that is why I am sitting in here with you and Boomer. I always do this just to be sure and in a minute or so, I will check his heart and confirm that he has passed.”

The hand of Boomer’s mom is guarding Boomer’s carcass and again like a spring board on the immediate heal of the veterinarians words, “I don’t think so. He’s still alive. I can see that he is. I can feel his heart beating.”

Point accepted, no matter how unlikely or how improbable or how delusional, the possibility must still be accepted at present by the veterinarian. The veterinarian struggles to stomach the delivery of another patient and tolerant counterpoint to Boomer’s mom as gently as he is humanly able. “Boomer has not been breathing since about ten seconds after I gave him the injection. I have been watching him very closely as I sit here with you and your husband. He passed very easily and he will not suffer anym….”

“How do you know? How do you know he isn’t breathing?”, higher in pitch and emotion that her previous words. She looks at the veterinarian like he is a dumbfounded simpleton. The husband catches her glance and obviously recognizes her approach towards another all too well.

The veterinarian feels sorry for both of them, but for each in a different way. He gently directs his words once more to Boomer’s mom. “I have been watching Boomer’s chest the whole time. When a dog breathes, his chest moves in and out or up and down. You can easily see the movement when it occurs. His chest has not been moving at all for some time.”

“But I can feel his heart. Have you ever been wrong? God, that would be terrible. Have you ever been wrong? Has that ever happened? What would you do? What would you do? God, that would be terrible.”

The husband turns towards his wife with a little more purpose than he has displayed previously and speaks in a level manner. “I think you might be feeling your own pulse that’s in your hand when you press down like that. I don’t think he has taken a breath or moved in any way for a while.”

Her eyes pivot anxiously back to the veterinarian. “But have you ever been wrong? I mean ever? Have you ever been wrong? That would just be SO, SO terrible. What would YOU do?”

He answers the same question for what seems like the thousandth time. “I don’t believe that I have ever been wrong in the exact same situation as this. The reason I always sit here for a while after giving the injection is just to make sure of everything. That takes a little time and a little observation. I don’t want to make a snap judgement about any of it. It is too important to me.”

The veterinarian slowly inserts the earpieces of his stethoscope into his auditory canals, he cradles its tympanum in the sensitive touch of his dominant right hand, and with a firm grace of solid and controlled movement, he connects himself to Boomer’s body. As the tympanum contacts Boomer’s chest wall, the veterinarian closes his eyes. It might look like a gesture of prayer or respect, but it is not……not in the commonly perceived way. He closes his eyes because it focuses and directs his awareness to concentrating on the most important task at hand. He loses himself. He loses his sight of the owners and of the room and even of Boomer’s body. He becomes only a combination of auditory nerves of perception and tactile nerves of sensation. Almost unconsciously, the tympanum sweeps the relevant region of the chest wall twice without rush or hurry. The auditory nerves also complete their sensitive mission and fail to capture anything with their enhanced focus. He then knows without a doubt that he is connected to death. He stays there for just a moment before severing that pure connection. His hand slides back into his lap and his eyes open. The wife is looking intently at his new gaze and she seems to get something from it. Her anxiety and nervous energy still lurk in the embers, but her flames have been snuffed. He says “Boomer is definitely gone. There is no doubt. I promise you that’s true.”

The wife says “Okay. Thank you” with true acceptance, and her husband is very soon to follow in his own words of appreciation for what has been done. The veterinarian replies “You are both welcome. It is very hard to say goodbye. I wish I could make it easier for you, but perhaps it isn’t really meant to be that easy. I hope you understand that Boomer passed in a very peaceful manner. I am glad he left in such a way.”

 •

 At some point later that day, the veterinarian finds himself pondering this event and what possible lessons might be gleaned from such an experience. It seems like a simple matter of fact to him that the euthanasia was a mixture of significant frustration mixed with a tiny victory…..perhaps a tiny success. And he knows it will be a very limited success for the person who finally yielded to acceptance and trust. He damn well knows that he will have to wage very similar wars with this person in the future and perhaps, forevermore. It isn’t an insult. It is just a law of human behavior. But regardless, in the end, there was a success. There was a moment of peaceful acceptance, a moment of trust related to a brief connection, and sometimes that is just as good as it can get. Maybe, he chances, the lessons for himself are to be thankful for even the smallest victories that help to bring a person to even the briefest state of grace, to remember that all of us must walk our own path in our own timing and not in any other’s, to accept that maybe all of his efforts aren’t meant to be easy either, and to remember that he himself has to be eternally vigilant of his own tendency to look for his own punching bag. It always comes down to it: If you really… really want to help another or lift them up, if you really want to be a healer, it isn’t about anger, excuses, critique, or required effort. It is about controlling your own demons, your own excuses, and first and foremost, lifting yourself up and out of your own cycle of temptation towards destabilizing behavior of any sort.

To be continued…

Cribb          2015

Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 64

I think I am pretty realistic about my intelligence. I am probably smarter than you, dear reader, but I know that in the rare instance this will not be true. I accept that there are many more kinds of intelligence than just raw brainpower (which of course I have in spades), but I do not necessarily respect them all. Rather, I believe that true, worthwhile intelligence is characterized by an innate and superior sense of awareness of surroundings and an ability and desire to learn. This type is rare in the general populace. I was very young when I realized I was smarter than most everyone else, and I felt at once victorious and isolated.

Confessions of a Sociopath

M.E. Thomas          2013

Love vs Sex 135

Søren Kierkegaard, the Danish brainbox, reckoned it was a good metaphor for addiction to materialism and sex: “It is comic that a mentally disordered man picks up any piece of granite and carries it around because he thinks it is money, and in the same way it is comic that Don Juan has 1,003 mistresses, for the number simply indicates that they have no value. Therefore, one should stay within one’s means in the use of the word ‘love.'”

This analysis is resonant: this book, to a point, is about my own disillusionment with the material offerings of fame and fortune, which include money and sexual opportunity. My mate Matt once said he heard me, from his place on the couch, skylarking and jesting with some female companions in my room and assumed I was in hedonistic glory.

He then reported that I left the room, deadpan and hollow-eyed, somberly walked past him, fetched some lubricant—either mental or anatomical—from the kitchen, and glumly trotted back to the bacchanalia. When the door closed, he said, the trumpeting of decadent splendor continued as before. Whilst I don’t recall that particular incident, I do recollect that what began as the pursuit of pleasure or at least an escape from pain became a joyless trudge through flesh, at the summit of each coital march no certainty other than that the process must begin again.

Revolution

Russell Brand          2014

Cribb Comment: An essential element to persistent madness, anxiety, and perpetual suffering of any sort is “the cycle” or “a cycle“. This is more than evident in all of human behavior. Individual cycles may vary in their specifics, but many elements remain consistent throughout all cycles. A period of “reset” initiates a supposed new found bliss of intense joy, happiness, and peace. This period often occurs after resolving present strife or conflict of some sort and the associated delusional perception of achieving resolution (union) concerning “the issue.” Make up sex following some ramped up highly volatile fighting is a common succinct example of this. Sometimes, birthing a baby (a favorite of family and friends to push upon a couple suffering from unhealthy strife) or purchasing a new car/home/etc. or remaking your identity with a new job/change in physical appearance/change in life direction is the initiating factor allowing the cycle to reboot. Revolving sexual partners is also another technique that can produce the same pseudo-enlightenment. The obvious correlation of the rebooting of this cycle and its association with addiction to sex and materialism, as mentioned by Brand above, should be more than apparent. The value and role of “money” or “love/sex” in this cyclical curse is not one of respect or integrity or health or nurturing or stability or peace, but simply a catalyst or tool (and they are always replaced since they will ultimately be turned into the EXCUSE for the eventual meltdown that will occur at the end of this new cycle), serving to support the illusion of actual change and enlightened spiritual growth within the person.

The addictions and the excuses of every sort, both often hidden in great masked numbers, must be acknowledged and eliminated, before the cycle can truly be broken. Most people never actually achieve this feat and instead chose to jump from one cycle to the next, over and over, throughout their lifetime. I would argue that love cannot be understood or appreciated or shared by anyone caught in the cycle.

Cribb          2015

Love vs Sex 134

Many of us can probably remember the first time that we came across a Freudian proposition and wondered why it had taken medicine so long to decode the obvious. I, for example, recently finished writing an article about the latest wave of “home-grown” Islamic suicide-murderers. It was impossible not to notice one thing that their profiles and Web sites had in common. All of them complained about the impossibility of finding a woman, or sometimes a woman of sufficient piety. Meanwhile their public propaganda was hot with disgust and indignation at the phenomenon of female inchastity. The connection between repression and orgasmically violent action appeared woefully evident. In spite of many brilliant admonitions from the Crews faction, I was compelled to think of Freud.

Introduction to Civilization and Its Discontents (Freud)

Christopher Hitchens          2010