Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Rationality of Tolerance

Even when I was little, I had a healthy skepticism for people's professed moral positions. Maybe I just didn't understand (and still don't) the nuances of morality well enough, but to me most people's moral codes seemed horribly inconsistent and regularly skewed to their own self-interest or to the care and benefit of those closest to them. Of course now we have social research cottage industry about the darkside or limitations of empathy. Also, it seems more obvious (at least to me) when there's been a regime change, and the same people who decried the dubious tactics of the previous ruling class adopt the same in order to augment and perpetuate their own power.

Religion, often the seedbed of social moral norms, often has some of the greatest hypocrisies, or at least religious people often act far from what they profess to be their moral obligation to others. I have most experience with Mormons and the LDS faith, so that is where most of my experience is with this as well, and it's such a stumbling block to the church's efforts and to members' experience with the church that they've been doing a social media campaign addressing differences and loving others unconditionally.


But the judgment and rejection that some experience in the LDS church, I believe, is just a reflection of broader societal problems -- writing entire groups of people off as being less worthy of care, being quick to disenfranchise others, judging people harshly based on one singled out aspect of their personality or one single event in their life, etc. None of it is really a rational way to behave, but I see otherwise perfectly rational people try to rationalize these feelings all the time, and even dig in when challenged about them. Mob mentality seems to reign much more powerfully now than I remember at any other point in my lifetime.

I know I've written about tolerance before, but I just see stuff like this and think that empathy seems so limited if it still allows this sort of behavior to happen (and often encourages or is the source of this sort of in/out group thinking). Whereas, think about how much better the world would actually be if people were able to withhold judgment and instead seek to understand and appreciate each others' differences or even just leave each other mostly alone, but try to allow a place for everyone to develop and express their unique talents somewhere in someway in this world. Just because that was not how we were evolved to think, in our tribe-first primitive social brain mentality, doesn't mean that it's not the best way to think now. 

92 comments:

  1. Religion, like any closed-ranks group, hijacks our need to isolate dangerous individuals from our society.

    Evolutionarily, this was important: if someone in the herd was eating our children, it was best if we killed them or chased them off.

    But now, with sentience, comes a limited ability to decide what the "negative" things really are. Cults use this to form an us-vs-them mentality, by defining those members as the "in-group" and thus triggering the judge-persecute reflex to all those in the out-group.

    Religion isn't the only one. Racial/cultural bastions, anti-government communes, the communist/capitalist divide, jingoism; anything that lets us define our "in-group" for ourselves.

    -k.b.

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    1. You're an idiot and your opinions are retarded, so my advice is, don't state your opinions as if they are facts.

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    2. Anon at 9:39 - No, this is not morbid humour. Try again.

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  2. Nice post M.E.

    I think your observations are all valid.

    Perhaps being in a different country - and perhaps even being around **-* - I've lately noticed developments that give me a taste of a better future. I've been so focussed on understanding the past and current state that I have been quite sceptical too.

    Even this morning though I was pondering that our rationality can drive culture and culture has very powerful influence over behaviour. As much as we have evolved to favour our gene-pool and thus our tribe, we are also learning the value of diversity. We're learning that different perspectives bring advantages: new opportunities and reduced blind spots. In short, distinct groups are leveraging diversity for competitive advantage. Companies are tribes; in an economy driven not just by information but by insight, new perspectives will be hotly sought. There's no shortage of problems to be solved, and in times of disruption, emergent practices rather than established problem solving patterns are needed. Adaptivity and flexibility are necessary traits in this new age.

    So I think I still sound mechanistic :p but I did think about these things in response to **-*'s more innocent puzzling as to why those in power don't behave. I do think cultural advances will improve opportunities and acceptance for all types of individuals as we learn more about utilising our various strengths. It's simply staggering how much is available to us all so readily... you can see it walking down the street. You know, and respect to the positive psychology movement: I think it's been influential.

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    1. I have noticed that sociopaths rail against hypocrisy. Most of us just accept it as a part of life. But I think for sociopaths it's much more personal because it's a reminder of how they have been unfairly treated. Its a reminder of how they were victimized at some point and it went unpunished . But to be unable to see ones own hypocrisy is to distance yourself from the victim, even if the victim is you.

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    2. I sometimes wonder whether he was punished in some way as a child without his understanding why.

      It's incredible how my relationship with him prompts me to open up to the full pain of my own childhood. To have someone not leave in my moments of raw and sheer fright - that's a very healing experience. I can address the very limited narrative I used to bottle my overwhelming feelings as a child.

      He's very beautiful in my eyes. Strangest of creatures, locked away from me in his soaring tower of solitude. Then one day a week he opens his door for me, just a little bit.

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  3. Unconditional love. Strange this has been floating around in my head the past few days. North mentioned in the previous thread something about what she had been led to believe love was. I personally have experienced the negative effects of "unconditional love" I don't doubt what I feel but I do doubt ideas that I have been "taught" to feel. They have failed me in the past and I think it must be looked at. Love is powerful and of course that makes it very valuable. It makes it something worth corrupting.

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  5. What is love? Like the question "what is truth? There is no absolute, we create our own resonances, our own meaning. Safety? Appreciation? Desire?

    I've been thinking about it.

    anon, when you say corrupted, do you mean something like "used for leverage?"

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    1. Hmmm... I've always thought of love as care, respect, and appreciation but, safety, appreciation, desire is a good way to say it when looking from the other way

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    2. Hey Tii,

      Respect is very important too; perhaps as a pre-requisite.

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    3. You have to show respect in order to receive it. Don't expect to be respected if you are sorely lacking in this area.

      That is a prerequisite.

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    4. Tii.....HUGGLE THE Tii! Missed you dude! For me you pretty much nailed "love". "care, respect, and appreciation but, safety, appreciation, desire and respect" I would add loyalty for I value it highly.

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    5. Hey Pups, how's it been?
      That way is just how I figured it, if you don't show at least these I don't think it's worth being called love.

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  6. Yes, taking something natural or naturally occurring and using it against one's nature.

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  7. "empathy seems so limited if it still allows this sort of behavior to happen"

    You talk as if empathy exists as a fixed thing, apart from people. Everything's limited, and empathy varies as much as people do; is a spectrum, like everything else, and is expressed, suppressed, followed, ignored, abused/misused in accordance with people's thinking, biases, prejudices, like everything else. It's not a magic bullet which automatically cures all ills - that notion is almost a straw-man - it's just a potentiality, which can be fruitful but is as subject to individual stupidities and limitations as anything.

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    1. God knows empathy isn't a cure all. A lot of times I do wonder how different I'd be if I were more empathetic (better person in the eyes of others or what not) but, sometimes looking at people fall for stupidities gets me wondering if empathy is really worth what they make it to be.

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    2. Yes. Do you mean being conned, or more generally? Can you give any examples of the kind of things you notice?

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    3. Well I'd say being conned and more. I've had friends (both males and females) be in abusive relationships, sometilmes physical, or sometimes cheating. They break up because they can't stand the way they are being treated, their ex comes back with promises of changing, saying how they were wrong and how much they love them, add the tearworks and boom back together, and the process repeats. I ask why they go back, because I know he loves me, I trust him to have changed, we have history, or he'll fail without me and that sort of bullshit.

      I've had friends and family members get ruined financially, emotionally, and mentally (to the point of becoming suicidal) by their parents. Who know practically everything about them, have their documents and so can even borrow money, take leases or put assets in their name without telling them and neglect to manage them positively or responsibly. I tell them to break away from them, demand their all copies of their documents and make their ownway without lending them money or letting themselves get used. Answer: oh it's my parents (sometimes lovers instead of parents) I can't do that to them. The point is they love me, and want the best for but they have to... Yeah nice way of showing it, at least they'll let you know when they take loans in your name instead of letting you find out when you get a warning from the bank cause you haven't paid.

      I would never allow myself to remain in these situations, and it's easy enough (if you have to calk the police) that not that many people should choose to let it happen. Unless they enjoy it.

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    4. Great, Tii. It looks like you understand fraud, scams, confidence tricks and their repercussions - basically, the difference between right and wrong. Does this mean that you're fighting for a cause to disarm con artists? Or that you would stand up to those who try to discredit others as Anon has done by saying, "A sociopath telling empaths how to be empathetic,now I've seen it all. *dry humour*"?

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    5. Anon 3.14 he was just answering my question. fuck off.

      Tii. Good point well made. Thank you for answering. I enjoy your comments and thinking. Always nice to read. :)

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    6. Why, where is your etiquette and respect, Anon at 3:30? I guess both have gone to...pfft?

      Example of a disrespectful, circa 60-year-old woman? Yes, I've had to deal with someone who posed as such, unfortunately. A con artist. Damaged, this is also hysterical:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ckv_Dz-Sio

      I wouldn't say morbid, though.

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    7. Anon pi,
      Nah, it's not about the people trying to con or whatever. They can do whatever they want. I mean. If you had a goose that shat gold everytime you flicked the back of its head, tell me yoy wouldn't do it (but sure I'd guess it would be better if they didn't but that's beside the point). What I saying is, why do people allow for it or allow themselves to fall for it. I put most of the fault in people who fall for the same shit repeatedly.

      But yah... (o3o)/ be nice kids! Don't trick, con, or lie to people.

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    8. "What I saying is, why do people allow for it"
      Yep, empathy, you were right. (9 times out of 10 probably).'Can't do that to them' is a classic. Particularly strong with close family probably and hard to override. Those who experience it understand it, those who don't won't. An example of empathy producing tolerance too... Stupid but tolerant / anti-vindictive.

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    9. Tii what I have found is that people are just repeating patterns they have learned when they repeatedly fall for the same shit. It also has to do with a pathological need for love. When you are raised in a family where every good reaction must be earned at a cost then you don't question "buying love". The need for love and positive attention from people who are supposed to love you unconditionally, but do not, can be very motivating to those starved of affection all thier life. They rationalize bad treatment because they NEED, or think they do, love and attention. It is kind of like chasing a drug high, considering that the emotions do produce endorphins it can be exactly like it in fact.

      People in general believe the Brady Bunch myth. The perfect family myth, they think they know what a family should be by observing healthy ones and they overlay that onto what thier actual experience is. As a psychopath I caught on to the differences between my family and a normal one very early but it was still difficult to break established patterns of behavior. I got some outside help but the best aid came in the form of a book : "The Dance of Anger" by Harriet Lerner. It teaches how to break out of your family roles and patterns. If you find someone who needs that then make them read the book.

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    10. Definitely will propose it to some. I know some people that I would probably feel bad for if I hadn't see them make those decisions that screw them over, after I warned them.

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    11. PB so parents 'should' love kids 'unconditionally', but in reverse it's probably a pathology of some sort?

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    12. "The need"

      assuming you mean: in children

      "for love and positive attention from people who are supposed to love you unconditionally, but do not, can be very motivating to those starved of affection"

      very motivated - to develop an 'eye for an eye' style of interpersonal behaviour, if one's psychopathic..

      "They rationalize bad treatment because they NEED, or think they do, love and attention."

      ..or people-pleasing and co-dependency, if one's not.


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    13. PB,

      Your post was helpful to me.

      "They rationalize bad treatment because they NEED, or think they do, love and attention."
      It's not even rationalised, to be frank. That's the pattern that's been learnt, that's what one considers love to be. Anything else doesn't feel natural, and takes a good deal of effort to accept.

      I consider I have a disorganised attachment style that I am trying to bring towards an earned secure style. Although there is work that can be done myself, the most overwhelming strides come in relationship with people who already have a secure attachment style. Those are not in abundance for me, except at work. It's very difficult for me to open up to these people; literally baby steps. But they reflect back to me a view of myself as valuable and competent and worthwhile. It's not a contrived reflection, and it changes me.

      I will read the book you've suggested.

      My son's psychologist suggested we have an opportunity to help him develop empathy; a consideration for how his actions while angry affect other people. I am aware that I also lack this capacity sometimes: when I'm angry, I do not consider consequence for others or how I might impact. My circumstances seem so pressing and I want to burn all my bridges. That's all I care about in the moment.

      I wonder how that is similar or different to a psychopath's experience? I can calm down and reflect on my actions very quickly afterwards. **-* it seems will hold on until his revenge is executed. And he's in that cycle right now; it's pretty vicious. So I need to step away. I think he has chosen to attack me as spitefully and aggressively as possible. He chose well. But of course I am in risk mitigation mode and have consulted with relevant parties on an appropriate response to protect myself. Strangest of creatures. For some reason, it doesn't even make me angry: it just shows me he is vulnerable and I pity him. Because he's not at any actual risk from me whatsoever... except that I call him on his stubborn, unthinking bullshit. Anyway, I obviously have to keep my distance for the foreseeable future.

      Perhaps this paper would be of interest to some here: Adult Attachment Styles and Psychopathic Traits: A Relationship Mediated by Empathy and Emotion Regulation?

      I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on empathy and early attachment.

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    14. "**-* it seems will hold on until his revenge is executed. And he's in that cycle right now; it's pretty vicious. So I need to step away. I think he has chosen to attack me as spitefully and aggressively as possible. He chose well. But of course I am in risk mitigation mode and have consulted with relevant parties on an appropriate response to protect myself."

      I would refer to Anon's comment from March 19, at 4:01. In addition, his morbid humour and/or overall behavior, is not about revenge, anger, viciousness or spite. As an empath, you would naturally think in this emotional mode, since this is what empaths do when they emotionally interpret such things as attacks. They feel unnecessarily affronted. Frankly, it is a predominant, predictable and automatic response, stemming from one's brain wiring as an empath.

      This is more about tastes and flavors, such as a liking for morbid or unconventional humour, which is a good example in this case. You are making it sound too convoluted and temperamentally-focused. There is no drama here or an iniquitous plan. To him, it is just a personal preference sans malice, which seems rather difficult for you to understand. That is all.

      So, chill. There is no reason for you be in "risk mitigation mode," or to protect yourself. There is absolutely no reason for you to panic or overthink.

      "I consider I have a disorganised attachment style that I am trying to bring towards an earned secure style. Although there is work that can be done myself, the most overwhelming strides come in relationship with people who already have a secure attachment style."

      Good luck with this goal, North. Peace.

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    15. What a good comment

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    16. Your thoughts are interesting but you lack data. And you know what Sherlock Holmes says about theorising sans data.

      Nevertheless, it is perfectly simple: he needs the upper hand in the same way I need partnership. Those needs are incompatible.

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    17. I also think he just can't get too close. And maybe that's what I mean by partnership - teaming up. He couldn't share his needs; he'd wheedle around, add excuses. I think that's a fairer view of it. The big finale was a defence mechanism.

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    18. hey north, "Nevertheless, it is perfectly simple: he needs the upper hand in the same way I need partnership. Those needs are incompatible."
      so if your needs are incompatible, why don't you get someone whose needs will be compatible?

      alice

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    19. I don't think it's feasible that one person meets all your needs. I feel very sad because he was meeting some exquisitely special needs in me. I have grown in the relationship, and the relationship has matured. My need for partnership is newly recognised and the price I pay in conceding this is about on par with the value his tenderness gives.

      It is, however, an academic discussion. It's completely out of my hands; I cannot contact him. And yes, I will date others and find someone more compatible. I am glad I've learnt to articulate this need and to seek it out.

      Thankyou for the opportunity to explain my reasoning. Although I am emotional, I hope you will realise I am not bereft of the simple clarity you've mentioned.

      "One sees clearly only with the heart. Anything essential is invisible to the eyes."

      "It's so mysterious, the land of tears"

      "It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important"
      ~ Antoine de Saint Exupery, The Little Prince

      If you don't value these quotes, I especially recommend listening to the audiobook I linked to. M.E. has previously written about The Little Prince as follows:

      "It would not be much of an exaggeration to say that most of what I learned about relationships in my younger years came from watching this movie."

      The book has helped me tremendously. At the end of the day though, some things are not possible and it's time to say goodbye.

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    20. North hello. There are things that we have to see a little at a time. If we were to see it all at once we would go mad. Our minds protect our hearts. Because I believe we want to hold onto what we know to be true. And I do believe we have an innate sense of *truth, * it is ours and we have the right to our own inner creation. there are glitches, I guess, that I don't understand. They wake me up and remind me of the constant nature of myself. I can't deny my experiences but also my experiences can't deny me. I am not broken or ruined. Those are all lies. Glitches. I hold onto my truths. They were always mine. I only wanted to share them with someone who had already written the end of the story. But I am infinite. There is no end of the story.

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    21. Thanks anon. I understand what you are saying and think it is the best path, finding and flowing with one's own truths.

      Caroline Buchanan is an elite BMX and MTB rider. Pretty cool chick. "Be you - and stay true" Is her motto. I think the more solidity we can develop around our own inner truths, the more effectively we can relate to others.

      When I see it this way, the tension I'm in makes sense. Again, it's this unconscious expanding of self that suddenly threw that relationship into the void. That lost and growing part of me had spoken: I want people to like me. And recently people have been liking me and I actually recognised and accepted this. I allowed people to care about me. And in a flash, not being regarded was completely insufficient and I acted impulsively.

      Integration. Even my mum said I needed to integrate all the different parts of me in this situation. The hurting part that loves his tenderness is only one of those. It's important, but so are the other parts of me that are flourishing.

      I made a conscious decision to start talking to people about my relationship because it can be very difficult dealing with a psychopath sometimes. Neurotypicals need things psychopaths can't offer. That's not to say they don't offer their own value; only that our emotional needs just can't fully be met. And I wanted to meet my own needs. And how much things changed in half a week of doing this! I spoke to all my family and my colleagues. I guess I wasn't ready for all the care I received. Maybe neurotypicals can't help with the specifics of dealing with a psychopath - I liked K@'s comment about there not being a manual! They can, however, help immensely with care of self and being part of community.

      Thanks for helping me see that unconsciously-driven journey within me! Thanks for helping me make sense of this.

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    22. Why is it out of your hands, and why can't you contact him, North? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zR-v8XHqgnQ

      The dance with the male fox was fitting.

      But, if you are a girl, do not contact him. He does not want a partnership with a girl. This is what would make the relationship incompatible. I wish you well, too.

      As to having data, "There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact." Sherlock Holmes

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    23. Anon: "I am not broken or ruined. Those are all lies. Glitches. I hold onto my truths. They were always mine. I only wanted to share them with someone who had already written the end of the story. But I am infinite. There is no end of the story."

      North: "And yes, I will date others and find someone more compatible."

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6__a9PjNX4

      Be happy. All's well that ends well. :)

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    24. North thank you for your bravery. Its very rare and refreshing. I think your right about opening up to others about your experience. Allowing yourself to care is maybe the most important thing you can do. Everything with sociopaths seem to trace back to that point. Someone stopped caring and everything snowballed from there. The lies that one must tell themself to deny their own nature are neverending. We all are meant to care for ourselves and for others.

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    25. Anon 5:32: Indeed, the fox. That's exactly it. I changed the environment and he contacted me.

      Anon: 5:49. I enjoyed that clip - what's the movie?

      anon: Thanks :)
      Did you ever see The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? I feel I'm not unlike her; there's a part of me that wishes I could put that amount of distance between myself and others. But I know that would be a lie and so I have to be brave and keep moving forward, growing into my own nature. I think you are right: our nature is to care for ourselves and others.

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    26. "Indeed, the fox. That's exactly it. I changed the environment and he contacted me."

      He did so, since there must have been something he had not seen before. That is how these discoveries occur.

      Also stranger than fiction http://www.comingsoon.net/movies/news/557093-watch-trent-reznors-score-plays-razor-blade-posters-girl-dragon-tattoo?

      "And I don't know that **-* would claim it. He is very values-based, which astounds and humbles me. I feel like a machine talking to him sometimes.

      Maybe it starts with having our own needs met, our selves reflected back to us fairly and constructively."

      How do you feel about the exquisite art of packaging?
      http://cr8id.com/the-girl-with-the-dragon-tattoo/

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    27. North it's so strange you mentioned that movie. I have felt a strange pull lately to watch it again. I identify with that character in so many ways, especially the last few months or so. Its been a long time since I saw it but what I remember was her unlikely vulnerability and loyalty. I wonder why these things have happened to me. When I wake up in the middle of the night with dreams that don't even seem possible to have been mine. It is robotic. Its like now that they have been away from me(the sociopath) they have no idea how to be....I can't help but almost being in shock at it. How would they ever think they could attract me with what they do. Its very hard to accept this is what they are. I think maybe i have seen a much uglier side than you perhaps.

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    28. North I don't mean to imply anything with that last sentence.

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    29. North I also didn't mean to post just one sentence. From what you have described your X husband seems more like the sociopath I knew. I'm certain you have seen your share of ugly sides. *_** seems different. I have experienced different too and I have to believe they truly *are* different.

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    30. anon, I think dreams can be part of the sensemaking process. Maybe it's easier to process the very confusing elements subconsciously, visually.

      My ex-husband is far more dangerous than **-*, that's true. I saw him yesterday with his coterie of hangers-on. It astounds me how he can choreograph their behaviour for years on end, male and female.

      **-* has his peculiarities and particulars. His talent is coming up with a set of almost-lies that he can use but back out of when called on. It's just distance with him. And he doesn't see my needs until they directly impact him, ie when I lose my temper.

      I was drinking with my boss when **-* cancelled on me at the last minute. I roughly outlined this story for him and he agrees that **-* is a step up from my ex-h but things should be easier. He painted a nice picture of "easier" as being quite achievable. I think I probably still have some work to do on myself. I need to be around stable, secure people and learn to create a secure self image first.

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    31. Also, I think intimacy for **-* is a very physical thing. He often says that's how he communicates with me, that's what he understands rather than talking. And this rings very true of my experience with him; his body tells me everything. And it's how he reached me, that lost part of me. It's hard to remember, though, to trust his body.

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  8. Empathic capacity is no guarantee of intelligence or thoughtfulness, and isn't a prerequisite for either.

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  9. unrelated to the post, but in psychopath news you can use...


    Crazy at the wheel: psychopathic CEOs are rife in Silicon Valley, experts say (with obligatory American Psycho photo)


    and this is just hysterical: The 40-Year-Old Psychopath

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    1. So psychopaths are more likely to be successful entrepreneurs. Shocking~ Lol.

      but try to allow a place for everyone to develop and express their unique talents somewhere in someway in this world. Just because that was not how we were evolved to think, in our tribe-first primitive social brain mentality, doesn't mean that it's not the best way to think now.

      But that is *precisely* how those who were evolved to lead think, and have always thought. How we utilize the talent at our disposition, and whether or not we are manipulatively opportunistic about it, depends entirely upon our overarching moral paradigm, which is contingent upon our philosophical and/or spiritual worldview.

      If our worldview is weak or malformed, those of us who lead will make decisions that are strictly utilitarian. We will seek to win at any cost, in order to promote our personal agendas. That is why corruption is so rampant amongst the echelons of power.

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    2. But that is *precisely* how those who were evolved to lead think, and have always thought. How we utilize the talent at our disposition...

      Definitely agree (in contrast with Alcibiades below.)

      whether or not we are manipulatively opportunistic about it, depends entirely upon our overarching moral paradigm, which is contingent upon our philosophical and/or spiritual worldview.

      A, I'm wondering about this. Reason, in my view, is largely ability to create narrative. It's almost always done post facto and with the purpose of convincing. Neurotypicals know this... we do it every single day at home and work.

      My question for you is this: is it feasible we choose philosophy based on psychological alignment, ie the choice validates our predilection and supports us in our desires.

      My own philosophy and moral paradigm have virtually reversed as a result of my psychological shifts. My sense is that our behaviour is always more unconsciously driven than any of us care to admit.

      Also, please elaborate on your final para. What do you mean by a weak or malformed worldview? I can't imagine it's ever possible for a human to hold a complete, consistent and coherent system.

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    3. The underlying reason behind the hatred and denigration of "the other" is to to shore up thier own sense of worthlessness. Ie, I may be a piece of shit but look! If I point at these people and yell loud enough no one will notice my own sin. Humans tend to judge themselves in comparison to those around them therefore if they have someone who can be seen as "less than" that make them "More than". (It actually does not, but there it is). That is why when you see rascist, ableist, homophobic, or sexist rants notice how they always portray the other as stupid, lazy or sin laden. They feel they are these things themselves but if they can convince others to look at others this way then they themselves will be viewed as a leader and a good person for focusing everyone else's energy at "the enemy" for you will notice that the other always must represent a Threat of some sort.

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    4. "Humans tend to judge themselves in comparison to those around them therefore if they have someone who can be seen as "less than" that make them "More than"."

      Insightful, PB. I will remember that.

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    5. A, I'm wondering about this. Reason, in my view, is largely ability to create narrative. It's almost always done post facto and with the purpose of convincing. Neurotypicals know this... we do it every single day at home and work.

      My question for you is this: is it feasible we choose philosophy based on psychological alignment, ie the choice validates our predilection and supports us in our desires.


      I think the most important question is this: Upon what do we base the preferences which undergird the narratives we create? Logic and rationality, or an appeal to emotion, as manufactured and shaped by the influences which surround us, intimately and societally?

      I would posit that most empaths appeal to emotion above reason, be it to prop up our compassion, a desire for altruism, or on account of virtue signalling within our respective tribal echo chambers. This clouds objectvitity.

      I do not claim to be objective, but the means through which I have arrived at my worldview was systematic, and based upon a great deal of research, and skeptical inquiry.

      My sense is that our behaviour is always more unconsciously driven than any of us care to admit.

      Absolutely. This is why the media is such an evocative and influential means through which to subtly manipulate the collective consciousness: it appeals to subconscious triggers.

      If we wish to emancipate ourselves from the clutches of propaganda, we must learn to recognize the devices it employs in any given climate, whilst accepting our own biases and limitations. We must learn to think critically, for ourselves. Knowledge is power.

      Also, please elaborate on your final para. What do you mean by a weak or malformed worldview? I can't imagine it's ever possible for a human to hold a complete, consistent and coherent system.

      A weak or malformed worldview is one that is based upon human preference, predilection, and fallibility. I am a theist- in no small part because I consider this worldview to be the most logically consistent option, given my intellectual and emotional limitations. My faith, with its accompanying teleology and sotriology, is more robust, yet flexible- due to my intellectual pliability and fluid sense of self- than anything I might envisage without an external construct to which to appeal.

      Delete
    6. bitter and crankyMarch 24, 2017 at 6:13 AM

      too latinate

      Delete
    7. Hi A,

      "Upon what do we base the preferences which undergird the narratives we create? Logic and rationality, or an appeal to emotion, as manufactured and shaped by the influences which surround us, intimately and societally?

      I would posit that most empaths appeal to emotion above reason, be it to prop up our compassion, a desire for altruism, or on account of virtue signalling within our respective tribal echo chambers. This clouds objectvitity."


      "Virtue signalling within our respective tribal echo chambers." Excellent! I'm sure I will poach this :p

      I don't think anyone acts for these reasons. Really, no. There is a potent element of normalisation as you suggest, but I don't think anyone acts for the sake of emotion or compassion or altruism. Emotion is a shortcut driving behaviours that have been selected for. Reciprocal altruism is selected for in all social species, to varying degrees. People do have conscious drives, however, to act in ways that are approved of by others. Naturally. But that's normalisation. Sociopaths achieve normalisation by different mechanisms - I don't think there's a wrong or right way. And don't forget that cheating and ability to recognise cheating are also selected for. We all do both to varying degrees.

      Also consider that some "altruism" is really patterned "enabling" or a means to dominate or raise profile or any number of other less-than-well-intentioned actions.

      I think people with secure attachment have a good, healthy balance between self and others - see the Venn diagram I linked to below. There's nothing over the top or sickening in their altruism; it comes from a centred core and expects a fair response.

      I do not claim to be objective, but the means through which I have arrived at my worldview was systematic, and based upon a great deal of research, and skeptical inquiry.
      I don't doubt this. But I would naturally say the same for myself!! I don't imagine you'd find any Myers Briggs NT type that would say differently. And I don't know that **-* would claim it. He is very values-based, which astounds and humbles me. I feel like a machine talking to him sometimes.

      My faith, with its accompanying teleology and sotriology, is more robust, yet flexible- due to my intellectual pliability and fluid sense of self- than anything I might envisage without an external construct to which to appeal.
      You often seem humbled by your religion; maybe it's a grounding influence? I have met someone IRL who reminds me of you, but is perhaps less grounded. She's probably too much for me.

      Delete
  10. In my opinion this is not just an issue of religion but a societal wide issue. Everyone empaths are so quick to judge who is worthless, while sociopaths are looking how they might be valuable/useful

    https://sociopathphilosophy.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  11. Question: do socios clean a lot, they CANNOT TOLERATE dusty floors & furniture..?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not all of us. Depends on the socio. Some of us are quite messy.

      Delete
  12. Khaled el-Anani told a news conference the statue was almost certainly Psamtek I, who ruled between 664 and 610BC.

    Experts had thought the statue was Ramses, who ruled 600 years earlier, because it was close to a temple dedicated to the ruler.

    But...

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-39298218

    ReplyDelete
  13. A sociopath telling empaths how to be empathetic,now I've seen it all. *dry humour*

    ReplyDelete
  14. where the hell is A? Place is a little dry without her.
    X41

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey! Did you read my comment to North? I can be as dry as anyone.

      There is NOBODY drier than me.

      I am THE driest.

      Dry is the new cool.

      I will distract you. In return, you shall worship me. XD

      (So you won't see my strategic prowess, or fucking brilliant sleight of hand.)

      /Trump

      (#MAGA)

      Delete
  15. are you serious?
    c3po

    ReplyDelete
  16. All that we need to learn about tolerance can be absorbed from Logan.
    X41

    ReplyDelete
  17. Morbid, morbid humour - just straight up unpleasant. I like it!
    Of course, I'm not referring to M.E.'s post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Straight up talk! A fictional novelist's unpleasant example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EBRlxs0q2QY

      Delete
    2. I crown this the tip of the iceberg-macabre: “It’s her masterpiece. It’s possibly the most important novel in her already stunning career. It’s absolutely no good unless…”

      Oh, the pangs of exquisite fiction! :)

      Delete
  18. A liking for morbid humour, or strange occurrences, does not equate to abusive predispositions, a history of an abusive childhood or sheer victimization. Nor is the liking of morbid humour meant to attract the cries and grievances of those who dislike this preference. Also, if you feel, or have felt, abused and victimized, you are not a sociopath (your PTSD or "whatever," since there is always more to it, is treatable). Needless-to-say, you would think, considering the subject-matter of this blog? In fact, your insupportable cries, illogical meltdowns, unreal panic and grievances can be seen as blatant attacks against sociopaths, or as ways to openly ostracize. Nowadays, especially, empaths - driven by negative emotions - seem to speciliaze in such things.

    Pfft!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He rams me like the bull he is cuz the sex feels greatMarch 21, 2017 at 2:39 PM

      What the fuck are you rambling on about, no one is claiming to be a sociopath if they have ptsd. No one is attacking the sociopath. It's all in your head.

      Delete
    2. "It's all in your head."

      Difficult people defy logic...and others seem to derive satisfaction from creating chaos and pushing other people’s buttons.

      Think of it this way: if the complainer were smoking, would you sit there all afternoon inhaling the second-hand smoke? You’d distance yourself, and you should do the same with complainers.

      https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/290372

      Delete
    3. bitter and crankyMarch 22, 2017 at 7:16 AM

      smokers complain less

      Delete
    4. bitter and crankyMarch 22, 2017 at 7:18 AM

      fact

      Delete
    5. Harness me so I feel groundedMarch 23, 2017 at 6:02 AM

      I have ptsd to and I'm not a victim I survived an environment. nor do I sit there complaining ...creating chaos. At work ask any team member and they will tell you that I'm the girl who never joins in with the drama. The psychologist on our team goes around " what's your issue to each staff member - get it out. " the thing is I have no issue I say, I roll shit off and things that others find intense .. it's jut not intense for me. I find this high risk self harm environment, drug environment saving people from over- dosing easy and go with the flow. Because I understand the trauma inside. I never released it that way but I never judge others for their pain. So watch your words because we are not ALL like that. I believe I released it in my body internally and have arthritis conditions as a result.

      I'm just addressing the other stuff you said. Your on a different topic now.

      Delete
    6. You are a girl, Anon 6:02... and Anon 2:39? I do not like girls. However, I wish you well.

      M.E., please do not take this personally. This message is not meant for you. Besides, you are my friend.

      Delete
  19. Organized religions have done a bang-up job of establishing (erroneously) their philosophies as the go-to place for moral teachings but tolerance of anything other than their respective teachings has never been a "moral" issue for these institutions. It's only with the advent of rational thought as a competing philosophy have we finally went down the path of minding our own damn business. I'm "blessed" with intelligence and a strong aversion to simply taking someone's word for something - especially when it comes to what they perceive to be morality - so I've never been caught in the trap of confirmation bias as relates to religion. It also never occurs me to me that other people think of me or my generally "moral" actions ('m constantly surprised when I discover that they do) possibly because I never really think (or care) about what those people think or do. That is, unless they screw me over. Then it's payback time. Frankly, I think that makes me far more tolerant than your average "empath". And if it doesn't? I don't care.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I would like to say that this blog really convinced me to do it! Thanks, very good post. word cookies game | hill climb racing 2 | five nights at freddy’s 4 | hotmail login

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  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I agree with ann, realy great post to help out somebody. I hope that this one here https://collegewritingservicesreviews.jimdo.com/extra-essay-review/ will help somebody like me, just a simple student to save some time with studies and stuff, you know. It's really hard foe me to combine full-time job to feed my family and studing in university, it's the only thing that helps out

    ReplyDelete
  23. I, for one, comprehend M.E.’s posts and their sharp acumens, entrusting and knowing that she understands my own points. Even though M.E. and I have never engaged in email exchanges, I consider her to be my only unthreatening confidant. Thank you, M.E. In this sea of strangers, since I’ve never had a flock, you have not been a mere “stranger” to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry I told you to f off, anon. I misunderstood you.

      Delete
    2. Fine, I accept your apology.

      Delete
  24. To me empathy and toleration are kind of unrelated. Toleration is more what you refer to as rational, whereas empathy often involves only wanting to change the other to make them more like you (irrationally taken for granted that know more, have more money or power , and from your "superior" place in life are "willing" to help others-do-do-gooders, progressives, evangelicals, or reformists, but it is done as you point out for selfish reasons more than not. And I think it is coming from the unconscious, projections mostly, and our powerful feelings. So empaths and socios both act from self-interest.
    Empaths are always wanting to change others to be more like them which makes them intolerant. Like what is going on now in the U.S. with lack of toleration and assumptions of superiority. Yet the socio merely calculates a persons value or useful to them using reason, with little emotion involved. Causing damage, not caring about it, but toleration of all sorts of people. I would think the less emotionally driven socio actually has more capacity for tolerance, since he lets people be while using them for his gain. If there is nothing to gain, they are irrelevant to him. It is not in his makeup to care about how others feel or act, nor to regret, have remorse, or feel guilty about it. Believe me, I would love to be that way sometimes instead of burdened with emotions and remorse.
    I also doubt a sociopath would ever attempt to change an empath to be more like herself, since she believes fervently she is much smarter and better than others, with her only real competitors being other socios, psychopaths,or highly dysfunctional narcissists.That I understand is based simply on an innate inability to take the point of view, perspective, or "walk in the shoes" of another, which is key for real empathy.
    You also point out many empathy-capable people prefer not to look at the other persons point of view or tolerate it, even though they could, because they are all about changing people they help to be more like them, which is only way person would be actually tolerated by them. And we must admit many empaths choose compassionate actions merely to "look good" not because they have real empathy for the other. Such empaths often have little insight into the true dynamics of their actions, preferring to make it mean they are good, even when it is obvious to others they are hypocrites.

    I Like your site for many reasons but in the main it is because you accept who you are, curiously inquire about things you are not sure about (which is in itself insightful), don't make yourself wrong or bad, notice both good and bad traits, and are dedicated to assisting others on how to avoid the damage caused by psychopaths and sociopaths and narcissists on we foolish empaths who don't realize we are being conned. I myself am self-categorized as "socially awkward" and I really don't know, so must ask, the social rules others take for granted.

    I met the only true psychopath that I know of about 2 years ago. It flipped me out when I realized the games she was playing, but only after she manipulated me into doing everything she wanted. She was incarcerated in a juvenile detention facility at the time, but damn that 17-year old girl was smooth. My red flags were simply overridden. I could only see what "really happened" afterwards, especially when I could see everything that should have tipped me off, at the time, but did not. Just glad it was in a work relationship, not an intimate one.
    E.P.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "whereas empathy often involves only wanting to change the other to make them more like you (irrationally taken for granted that know more, have more money or power , and from your "superior" place in life are "willing" to help others-do-do-gooders, progressives, evangelicals, or reformists, but it is done as you point out for selfish reasons more than not."

      This stuff is nothing to do with empathy, it's self-importance and ego/power/control trips. Empathy is simply compassion for someone, appreciating their situation or experience. Different thing. I don't think the behaviours you refer to necessarily even stem from empathy. They more often stem from the desire to feel good/important. I enjoyed your post and agree with much, just think all this ^^ stuff is its own thing, not to be confused with actual empathy. 'Bogus empathy' isn't empathy, by definition. As you say/imply yourself, empathy-capable isn't the same thing as empathic. Most/all people are self-interested most of the time. That's nothing new.

      Delete
  25. The Purge started earlier at 7pm. I hope everyone is doing well. So far.

    ReplyDelete
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  27. On empathy

    Venn diagrams of the different relationships between self and others:

    Apathy | Narcissism | Codependence | Empathy (EQ)

    In this model, empathy is defined as connection and understanding. The self does not obliterate others; neither is the self obliterated by others.

    My son's counsellor described empathy as being aware of how your actions impact others.

    I think these are both very practical ways of understanding empathy; these are things I am only now aware of.

    PB's comment above about people judging themselves in comparison with others: this has helped me understand my mother's behaviour. She preferred me to be helpless as a child because it allowed her to feel less helpless. So she never comforted me.

    I think not having a clear reflection of my self as a child has made it difficult for me to know myself but also to reflect and understand others. When I get really frightened, I act impulsively and with no regard to others. i.e. I act without empathy. And it doesn't work. (This week was a particularly special case that I've learnt a lot from. And believe me I got both barrels back. But we've more or less apologised to each other now.)

    I think this is similar to not being able to recognise another person's needs more generally speaking. At least I can extend my own experience of lacking empathy to comprehend why maybe he just can't see my needs, even when I tell him. I can kinda understand what that place looks like: it's a place filled with one's own needs. I mean, filled. And I think that can be a place that doesn't necessarily mean harm to another.

    So what I'm saying is that empathy - as is often remarked upon here - isn't some magical quality. Maybe it is a capability that allows for longer-term reciprocation as a social strategy. Maybe it starts with knowing ourselves as social creatures in relationship with others. Maybe it starts with having our own needs met, our selves reflected back to us fairly and constructively.

    ReplyDelete
  28. North this makes so much sense. I think we experience the complete lack of regard that is so foreign, so utterly *blah* as though someone is actively trying to obliterate Us. And I am also aware of the way I respond. I have said before I strike like a snake. It is something I am usually not even aware of until afterwards. It is a reflex.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a sad dynamic, isn't it. They needn't be struck at if they opened up a fraction. A vicious circle, I imagine, throughout their lives - they expect and pre-empt threat that would be easily avoidable with the simplest of measures.

      They are such solitary, self-contained creatures.

      Delete

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