Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago at 9/18/16 3:50 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/18/16 3:50 PM

Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 189 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
I just wondered if anyone thinks that there's a tendency for narcissists to be drawn towards 'spirituality'?

I'm thinking in particular of the desire to be 'special' and 'different' from 'normal' people in some way? 

Or is it just me that was/is guilty of this? 

Thanks
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Ward Law, modified 6 Years ago at 9/18/16 9:35 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/18/16 9:35 PM

RE: Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 123 Join Date: 9/7/15 Recent Posts
A narcissist would be attracted to teacher/guru/healer roles, but there isn't much power and glory in being a mere spiritual seeker. There is the well known "holier than thou" attitude, and its modern form, "humbler than thou." But the need to be feel special and superior, while it might be a sign of emotional insecurity, does not mean one is a narcissist in the clinical sense.
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Daniel M Ingram, modified 6 Years ago at 9/21/16 1:50 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/21/16 1:50 AM

RE: Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 3257 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Funny you should mention it. Narcissism has been a topic that has come up a lot lately. I have been writing about it in the last few months, particularly as it relates to the "specialness" that spirituality can provide. It is my general impression that you find at least as many narcissists on the spiritual path as you find in other settings, which means a pretty fair number. More than the general population? Hard to tell.

Why is the topic on your mind?

Daniel
Derek2, modified 6 Years ago at 9/21/16 6:50 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/21/16 6:50 PM

RE: Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 204 Join Date: 9/21/16 Recent Posts
You have to be pretty extreme to meet the DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder:
  • Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
  • Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
  • Exaggerating your achievements and talents
  • Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
  • Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
  • Requiring constant admiration
  • Having a sense of entitlement
  • Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
  • Taking advantage of others to get what you want
  • Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
  • Being envious of others and believing others envy you
  • Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner
Robin Woods, modified 6 Years ago at 9/26/16 11:40 AM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/26/16 11:40 AM

RE: Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 189 Join Date: 5/28/12 Recent Posts
mysql:
You have to be pretty extreme to meet the DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder:
  • Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
  • Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
  • Exaggerating your achievements and talents
  • Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
  • Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
  • Requiring constant admiration
  • Having a sense of entitlement
  • Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
  • Taking advantage of others to get what you want
  • Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
  • Being envious of others and believing others envy you
  • Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner
Yikes - I definitely used to be guilty of some of that in an admittedly muted way...

I'm at Daniel's definition of third path. I'm really struggling to get to grips with the difference between healthy/normal egotism and narcisisstic conceit at this stage esp. in terms of my prior behaviour. I just shudder now when I think of the way my brain automatically used to judge people (and still does if I'm not mindful enough) in terms of their looks, job, age, socio-economic status etc. For example, if someone is reading a 'low-class' newspaper etc. 

I guess what I'm asking is - is this what everyone's brains are doing all the time and it's just that I've become mindfull of it? I think Tolle talks about this?

I feel so guilty and awful 'cos I can't stop my brain doing it. Am I a conceited a**hole? 

Obviously I never say anything about this to anyone.

Is coming to terms with this kind of conceit re: the 'other' a natural part of the path?
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Dream Walker, modified 6 Years ago at 9/27/16 10:51 PM
Created 6 Years ago at 9/27/16 10:51 PM

RE: Narcissism and 'Spirituality'

Posts: 1525 Join Date: 1/18/12 Recent Posts
mysql:
You have to be pretty extreme to meet the DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder:
  • Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
  • Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
  • Exaggerating your achievements and talents
  • Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
  • Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
  • Requiring constant admiration
  • Having a sense of entitlement
  • Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
  • Taking advantage of others to get what you want
  • Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
  • Being envious of others and believing others envy you
  • Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner

Robin Woods:
Yikes - I definitely used to be guilty of some of that in an admittedly muted way...
Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner

Robin Woods:
I'm at Daniel's definition of third path.
Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
Robin Woods:
I'm really struggling to get to grips with the difference between healthy/normal egotism and narcisisstic conceit at this stage esp. in terms of my prior behaviour.
Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it

Robin Woods:
I just shudder now when I think of the way my brain automatically used to judge people (and still does if I'm not mindful enough) in terms of their looks, job, age, socio-economic status etc. For example, if someone is reading a 'low-class' newspaper etc.
Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
Robin Woods:
I guess what I'm asking is - is this what everyone's brains are doing all the time and it's just that I've become mindfull of it? I think Tolle talks about this?
Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate

Robin Woods:
I feel so guilty and awful 'cos I can't stop my brain doing it. Am I a conceited a**hole? 
Yep

Robin Woods:
Obviously I never say anything about this to anyone.
Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
Robin Woods:
Is coming to terms with this kind of conceit re: the 'other' a natural part of the path?
Yep, unless you're a narcissist.emoticon

(This is all a joke above)

But seriously,
Trying to diagnose disorders without training tends to cause [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_students'_disease]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_students'_disease]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_students'_disease]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_students'_disease
I  was warned of this when I took some classes in psychology.

We all fall short of what we expect of ourselves which is why when we turn up the volume of our thoughts and really pay attention to them we kinda get down on ourselves for being a jerk.

Unless your already perfect like me emoticon
Back to therapy for me
~D

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