Narcissistic people are just that — fundamentally narcissistic. It’s not an insult to say that; what it is is a personality type (representing a noun) and verb description. Narcissistic people behave in ways that are egocentric and selfish, but not pervasive. People who meet diagnostic criteria for having Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD for short) are considered Ns — meaning Narcissists who are that way pervasively by nature as well as habit (meaning nurture).
According to the DSM-5 diagnostic criteria for Narcissism — and by extension Anti-Social Behavior in general — is based on having (or not having) a few key personality traits. Just because they claim they are religious does not make them any less narcissistic. In all reality, understanding that people who fit diagnostic criteria for having NPD [Narcissistic Personality Disorder] thrive on power and control, churches and other “exclusive” religious organizations are typically rife with both abusers and their Narcissists-In-Training Enablers.
Understand that people who struggle with addictions issues related to power, control, food, weight, drugs, alcohol… more often than not are narcissistic and self-indulgent by choice. But true Narcissists – people who by a combination of nature and nurture — are a different kind of person entirely. Religious abuse happens when a person is told they are so fundamentally flawed that unless they perform to a human idea and pledge devotion to following church leaders they are going to burn in hell.
People who are self-centered and who take the threat seriously join the church. Those who take the notion they are damned no matter what tend to drink themselves to death, party harder (never lighter), and routinely engage in games of hopelessness-inspired self-sabotage. Such are the addicts of this world — if they can’t be roped into the rope-a-dope entitlement-thinking based church movement, people with addictive personalities are told they are doomed for all eternity to suffer endless and unimaginable torture in hell.
Obviously, to a self-centered and garishly self-aggrandizing personality type, the news they are condemned (which, BTW, is a mind control tactic used by church officials to recruit narcy people) does not go over well. Not only are they [Ns] completely self-focused on sating their own needs for attention, perks, unjust rewards, and social climbing benefits, they appear to lack a full spectrum of emotional range psychologically or biologically.
These are the core of most church organizations — a handful of Narcopath leaders seeking power and control, people with addictive personalities who (for whatever reason) seek to make themselves feel more powerful, spiritually in charge, and in control, and a giant handful of religious and domestic abuse Enablers — those who are weak Covert Narcissists or who are more normal but have a sadistic streak. All love nothing more than playing missionary on behalf of their cult leaders, claiming to be teaching the word of God but skewing the facts wildly to ensure their needs spiritually and socially get met… at the expense of everyone else.
[A quick read of the Bible will tell you it is much more violent than the Koran. A quick read of a history book related to Western Civilization will also tell you there is nothing in religious history that reflects anything more than rampant entitlement thinking being promoted by a few people making tremendous profits for leading religious organizations that are grand.]
But none of these issues actually involve God or true spirituality. One either self-promotes or one chooses to do good things in the world as an extension of the good will nature of a free will granting, creative and loving diety — one who may be responsible for the creation of all that is. If our Earth God is here, being… meaning making up the essence of all that is in our known universe… if he/she/it was not the force that made manifest and lined up the first social memory complex of dominoes to push into action, chances are — based on Pascal’s Wager — he/she/it is or was a part of the original source.
Since everything allegedly is, and in order to be must have come into being, the teleological argument for a clockmaker remains — but no argument exists that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt logically speaking that says aside from prompting the first tick to alternate current diametrically opposing the tock that a sentient being is in charge of overseeing the operation. After all, once perpetual motion starts related to the pendulum swing, it might be quite some time before the dualistic swing of linear time and duality of three-dimensional spiritual and practical material compare-and-contrast models (from a change aspect) finally come to a resting halt.
That means there is a lot of room left for human interpretation of spiritual matters, noting that ultimately spiritual ideas about who or what first created matter and what being subsequently set “the game” in motion is likely to grow and expand in scope alone with the evolutionary leaps in human psycho-social development. And, as most physicists and scientists are starting to realize, the principles of the Law of Conservation of matter make reincarnation — rather than a stagnant concept of “Heaven” or “Hell” more likely than not.
Seriously. Read a science or a physics textbook one time — not related to evolution or creation. Think it through. If energy can never truly be destroyed — but instead changes form… and human biological housing is powered by a form of spiritual energy we call “soul”, then what’s to say when the soul leaves the body it does not move, re-home, and continue to spiritually, intellectually, and from an evolutionary perspective for the sake of God’s idle pleasure and pure amusement purposed alone continue to grow?
Even if you believe in Heaven, does it make sense with a finite amount of energy present in the universe that there is a place where intelligent, loving, socially connected human beings do nothing but self-indulge? Think this through carefully — because a group of narcissistic males who put together the Bible at a time when the promotion of their own special interests kept them wealthy and in the clique while subjugating women and disrespecting all other cultural tradition netted them huge material world gains at the human life expense of all others.
If you consider yourself a true person of spirit, chances are you are a People Pleaser who thrives on problem-solving — a person who loves to bring physical, social, and emotional pleasure to others. We don’t know about you, but it would seem to be more in line with what God wants to have real boots on ground here, folks. Boots on ground ready to help — not hurt. Read to inspire — not harm. Ready to be — not recruit to win.
Religious abuse happens when people are put in mortal terror for the future of their soul. Period. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. Slavery is condoned and encouraged to be practiced in the biblical texts. Men are encouraged to beat their wives. And a wrathful god will expel you from religious gains if you eat bacon or catfish.
[Look it up sometime in Leviticus…. then try taking a pork sausage round from a hungry Baptist during Sunday brunch at Denny’s and see how fast they stab you with a fork for grabbing it.]
Teaching boys and girls from their earliest age that women caused the fall of man? That people who are intelligent and have wisdom are not to be trusted — but please tithe 15-20 percent of your paycheck so our leaders can drive nicer cars and live in fancier houses and work in bigger, better, flashier “office” environments (namely grand palatial church spaces)?
We believe in the true nature of good — but sadly, people like the folks at Westboro Baptist Church fail to inspire us to join their troops, ranks, or movements. So do the creepy Catholics — you know… those fine folks who burn midwives as witches and hosted that fanciful party to entertain their church members — the one called the Spanish Inquisition? Oh, and don’t even get us started on the Spanish explorers and their missionary message of die by smallpox and drink your remaining selves to death, indigenous tribes of North and South America.
After all, who has time to worry about the invading Islamic hoard with all these psycho-spiritual and ethical treasure troves of white-bred human foibles to contend with, eh? We’re all going to hell, only the people who raped and disenfranchised most of the world’s population are those who we tell myths and stories about will be in Heaven.
[No thank you. It’s our belief that according to Christian teachings, going to Heaven must be very much so like having a holiday dinner, forced to entertain and bow to the narcissistic fam. We’ll stay right here doing our thing — teaching people empathy and how to be kind, loving, respectful, and supportive. If that is the Christian definition of Hell bound spiritually, we respectfully say thanks but no thanks about that.]
If you are interested in learning how to recover from Narcissistic Abuse you have experienced as Religious Abuse, the good news is it is possible. The bad news is it takes quite a bit of Kierkegaardian faith to go no contact with an abuser and a huge amount of psycho-social resolve to deal with the inevitable exile.
Let us, for the sake of debate and discussion, keep God out of the discussion. Focusing on the Church as the Patriarch of the Family (congregation), let’s agree to understand that the people who run the church — if corrupt, power-mongers — are likely to be the ring leaders. Their faithful followers, charmed by their charisma, act like Flying Monkeys (doing the proverbial Big Daddy’s bidding).
If the family is led by ethical and wise Empaths, the family is likely to both love and respect the leader of the family. If that person is helped by an equally wise and loving person, then that role model that cares for Daddy (in this example a mother role) is taken on by the key supporters of the church leader. Most often times, the role falls to “the girls”, so we’ll call the Ladies Luncheon sewing circle Mother (for lack of a better Mom-esque word).
What we’re talking about here is Soren Kierkegaard advising that at some point of time in a human life that a man or woman of faith needs to make a leap. It’s known as the “Leap of Faith” in philosophy club circles.
In the case of a domestic abuse victim seeking to heal, to do so one has to go against biological instinct as well as social mores to save themselves from abusive people and peer groups who compulsively indulge their inner sadist by deliberately harming. It’s the same feeling for a religious abuse victim, only drama plays out internally and spiritually on a much larger imaginary scale.
Whether you are dealing with a peer group who bullies you at school, a teacher who delights in pretending to be nice in front of parents and administrators but is a monster covertly in the classroom, or you’re dealing with a bunch of bitter old church-going people [who are not likely to change and who (if karma works or hell is real) are likely to suffer fates worse than death after their passing] does not matter. Whether a single person bullies or a pack of ill-tempered and disgruntled Flying Monkeys and aspiring Narcissists are doing the tormenting, that is their problem to deal with… so stop believing the hype your own narcissistic family or Religious Narcissists taught you.
Forgiving an abuser is not something a victim is required to do. Peace and forgiveness are spiritual in nature — between a subject and God. It’s not a victim’s responsibility to forgive, tolerate, or enable abuse.
When Jesus allegedly said, “Forgive them, Lord, for they know not what they do…” chances are he was speaking specifically about people with Cluster B personality disorder issues. Getting upset with them is pointless. Holding them accountable for their lifestyle choice to abuse is appropriate, though. Hence, going no contact truly represents a legitimate virtue.
After he said it, narcissistic people re-spun the meaning of the story to claim Jesus died on the cross to absolve humanity of the sin of being born (lie one) and from their free will choices in life they make about how to act and treat other people (lie two). Then, they started selling entitlement rights to go to a place called heaven, never once realizing the human world IS “Paradise Lost”.
Their narcissistic impulse to absolve themselves from spiritually or morally toxic social behaviors led them to spin a tale of woe to promote fear and population control. Power and money — not true spiritual ethics — have been promoted actively by all the Christian and Jewish sects since long before Christ was a kid.
People towing the party line they were most likely taught by their parents and trained to believe by attending weekly sermons taught their children everyone born in human bodies is inherently evil. Truthfully, though, that is NOT THE CASE. Bodies are inherently bodies. It’s human opinion to even try to define concepts like evil and good.
That in no way, shape or form means God is not real, does not exist, or is not paying attention. It does mean that God might very much so have different values judgments than even the most enlightened, religious, and pious of humans.
It also does not mean you cannot come to know and or love the inherent wisdom in the social teachings of the humanitarian named Jesus. You can even believe he is the son of God who represented a living embodiment of the Christ Conscience without feeling silly or needing to defend your belief from atheist or other religious ridicule.
There is absolutely NOTHING virtuous about tolerating, excusing, or minimizing toxic behaviors — including religious abuse. If you are persecuting people of ANY faith — including Christians abusing other Christians by promoting civic compliance with ruler ethics by promoting a belief in an angry, judgemental God who punishes humans by sending their alleged immortal conscious souls to hell — it’s Narcissistic Abuse, plain and simple.
Misogyny codified is still not right, in the sense that it’s not a protected civil right. Actually, the last time we checked, the American government was supposed to protect and promote all faith’s common interest rights. [Notice we never said all rights — simply common interest rights.]
Telling someone they are going to burn in hell if they disagree with your philosophical opinions on the afterlife is abuse. Plain and simple, it’s promoting an entitlement-thinking based ethic while simultaneously brandishing it as a weapon. It makes the speaker look and sound foolish, drives away people of good faith and kind nature, and virtually guarantees only covert and overt Narcissists will join the group.
Threatening to blow up abortion clinics is illegal the last time we checked. And civil rights remain protected — including the right to practice any religion you want (or not). Civil law governs the land, with even the most pompous of lawmakers leaving the gods or God or Flying Spaghetti Monster in charge of what happens to humans before birth or after death.
People who promote entitlement thinking harm human social and emotional evolution. Anyone who cannot see that for some scapegoats and targets, continuing to subject themselves to the outlandish and caustic negative lifestyle choices and behavior patterns of a toxic family, narcissistic peer group, or abusive person is the moral equivalent of committing passive suicide needs to take a good look at themselves in the mirror.
Get ready for the punchline here, because as the article title implies, it packs a wallop.
The original sin — in our humble non-religious but spiritually in tune opinion — was Narcissism.
If that’s not patently obvious as something to avoid engaging in by habit (for the best interest of all mankind), we have no earthly idea what else to say.
Stop reading here now if you think any long term spiritual good comes from human Narcissism.
If you do, it might be time to take a critical look at yourself. You may be a victim of Religious Abuse and not realize it — or you could have a narcissistic personality type and don’t care who knows it.
Evaluate your own thoughts and do a big fat self-check. Who taught YOU that overlooking, excusing, dishing out, or enabling abuse was a smart, kind, or moral thing to do? Was it a person historically known for enabling or abusing others? Are they the kind of people who you would like to pattern your life after with regard to lifestyle and emotional integrity?
We only ask because chances are that person justifying, minimizing, or excusing abuse was either an Abuser seeking to absolve themselves of responsibility.
It’s also a likely scenario that they themselves were Narcissistic abuse victims who learned to be ENABLERS (a mild form of Covert Narcissists who seek to avoid being actively abused by stronger personalities)… who — for whatever reason — tend to care about pleasing or seek to emulate, too.