“You can’t cure narcissism! You can’t cure addiction! Depression is a chemical imbalance that can only be treated with therapy and medication! We have to heal our childhood wounds! Etc, etc…”
Before we begin, at least for the time being let’s just set conventional wisdom aside. The discourse on these subjects has failed to identify the root issue behind them. And don’t get me wrong because there’s certainly a plethora of useful information out here, and the scientific, academic and philosophical communities have made great strides pertaining to these subjects, however, if we don’t start from the proper foundation it doesn’t matter how intricate or extensive the knowledge systems we develop are, they’ll ultimately be inaccurate.
Narcissism, depression, trauma, addiction and psychosis aren’t different problems, they’re part of the same problem — and trying to analyze and consider them individually only leads to confusion. It’s like a Rubik’s cube; you have to solve the whole thing. If one party’s focused on the green side while the other’s focusing on the red, all they’ll succeed in doing is tripping over each other in the quest to solve their side.
We’ll try to keep this as simple as possible, so please try to keep up. It’s your job to use connective reasoning to piece things together from your end. It’s not my responsibility, nor is it my desire to convince you of anything. It’s your job to think and be honest with yourself. In all things, let reasoning, honesty and intuition guide you to the most logical conclusions. What I’m saying will make sense to you if you just consider it and compare it to things you’ve already learned and observed.
Let’s start with three premises…
1. Narcissism isn’t a personality disorder, 2. Narcissists aren’t terrible people — in fact, it really isn’t their fault they are the way they are, and 3. The hippocampus is a parasite.
As mentioned in previous works, what humans call “ego” is quite literally a parasite that’s located in the brain and spread (and/or affective) throughout the autonomic nervous system. This parasite feeds on hormones and neurotransmitters produced by the human body — mainly the hypothalamus, gut and adrenal glands.
The ego parasite is more than likely what neuroscience refers to as the hippocampus (but could include other parts of, if not the entire allocortex and neocortex structures). This may not be the case for all species, but for humans what’s currently acting as and/or in place of the hippocampus is a parasite (akin to a cymothoa exigua/parasitic tongue louse acting in place of a fish’s tongue).
We’ll unpack this more in just a bit, but for now let’s move onto depression…
So what is depression? In order to answer that question properly we have to consider it from different angles. From a physiological standpoint depression is either experienced in the form of depletion, which is a physical state that causes people to feel a numbing and suffocating hunger pang that sources to an appetite they can’t identify within themselves (actually it’s like a hunger/pain combo that starts in the head and extends down to and throughout the gut, but which affects all parts of the body, and seems to engulf and weigh heavily on the entire life experience), or it’s experienced as anxiety, which is a feeling of imminent danger — often times without perceivable sources to attribute that feeling to, or which needlessly amplifies the perceived threat level in or of objects (people, places, things, situations or ideas) that do not warrant it.
Depression can make you feel physically, mentally and emotionally drained, as though something’s sucking the life force out of you, or it can make you feel like you’re in a constant state of danger, as though you’re ‘in trouble’ but can’t see where it’s coming from or how far-reaching the consequences are.
As such, when you’re depressed you tend to remain in perpetual states of disconnect or high alert, ever ready to preemptively attack or retreat and shield yourself from who or whatever may pose a threat to you, or flippantly throw yourself at representations of happiness, comfort and security. This condition is often referred to as “manic depression” or bipolar disorder. It doesn’t just affect people who’ve been diagnosed with it or those who exhibit salient symptoms though, it affects the broad majority of the species to some degree or another.
Most people tend to view and treat depression as an emotional issue, however that’s not what it is or how it works. Why? Because emotions derive from ideas.
Before you can experience an emotion an idea must precede and/or lay the foundation for it. Whenever you perceive something, anything in the world around you, in order for it to be knowable to you, your mind must first convert it into an idea that can be assimilated into the body of ideas (meanings, symbols, beliefs, etc) that comprise the portion of your conceptual frame commonly referred to as the “apperception”.
The conceptual frame houses the identity, perception and apperception (and yes, I mean conceptual frame, not “conceptual framework”. What I’m referring to is the scaffold of core concepts that serve to form the perceptive outlook, and thus supply individuals with the most basic sense of agency and autonomy, which serves as the frame for assimilating and building meanings both within and onto, thus imbuing people with temporal, spatial and situational awareness. It’s basically what defines the actor in relation or contrast to everything around them. I call it the conceptual frame because it’s the location in which inspirations and data taken in through the sensory faculties get(s) transformed into concepts — which then go on to become ideas, and subsequently meanings, symbols, beliefs, stories, and other conceptual building blocks; and yes, concepts precede ideas).
The identity is both the story you tell yourself about the world around you and your place and value within it, and the character you see yourself as within that story. In the simplest terms, your identity is the idea you’ve formed of yourself. It’s the collection of meanings, symbols, beliefs, stories, habits, practices, propensities and proclivities, relationships, methods for assessing, interpreting and assigning value, and the aesthetic and social treatments and effects you’ve collected through the course of your life, which serve to form the character you project to audiences, both real and imagined.
Perception is the mental faculty and/or process that transforms stimulations and/or data taken in through the sensory faculties into ideas that can be understood and processed, in addition to the lens created by the apperception, which gates consideration for (and thus dictates the consumption of and/or ability to interact with) information, ideas and reality at large.
The apperception is the body of ideas people already possess which serve to create the frame of reference. It’s basically a reference journal for all of the meanings we’ve assigned to stimulations, phenomena, effects and affects.
(Because the perception and apperception work interdependently, often times I’ll hyphenate them and treat them as one structure in this work)
Again, you can’t experience feelings towards anything you can’t form ideas about. Now it is possible to experience feelings towards ideas divorced from objects, but not objects divorced from ideas. In other words you can’t actually feel anything towards or about anything you can’t form a conceptual model and/or idea of…
For instance, you’re not afraid of, excited by or happy about the actual physical conditions of some random planet on the opposite side of the universe. You can’t be because you have no concept of the state or condition of the planet, and thus can’t form an idea about it. You don’t even know if planets on the opposite side of the universe hold the same shape, or have the same properties as planets over here. Even when things are unfamiliar to you, and thus cause you to experience fright, you must first recognize that they’re unfamiliar to you — meaning the idea of unfamiliarity necessarily precedes the emotion of fright.
Following that same thought path, if you were to manufacture and project your own fantasy onto the hypothetical conditions of that planet, you could be thoroughly excited by the idea you’ve manufactured in your mind, but you’d still experience a void of emotion for the actual physical conditions of the planet, as they’d still be inconceivable and thus unknown to you. Again, you can experience emotions towards ideas, but not things you can’t conceive of.
You experience positive or negative feelings towards things based on how they align or conflict with your conceptual frame. If you perceive things that match your self image (the meanings and effects you’ve internalized), or which match your hopes, wishes and expectations, or your desires and feelings of entitlement — thus reflecting the story you tell yourself about the world around you and your place and value within it back to you, then you’ll likely experience positive feelings towards them.
If however things don’t align with or verify the correctness in and of your inner story you’ll more than likely experience negative feelings towards them.
Principally defined, to the perceiver “good” means source of comfort and “bad” means source of distress — which makes anything that aligns with a person’s conceptual frame perceivably “good”, and anything that conflicts with, threatens or undermines it perceivably “bad”.
But the process of forming positive and negative feelings towards people and things necessarily entails forming ideas prior to comparing them to what already exists in the conceptual frame.
This is where depression differs from emotion. With depression, an idea doesn’t directly precede the feeling. Depression is instead a residual effect brought on by an excess of unresolved tensions in the mind. The biggest cause of depression is conflicting and/or irreconcilable meanings. In order for your mind to function properly, free of hiccups and hangups, things have to make sense and add up — not just in your immediate circumstance, situation or surroundings, but in general…
Oddly, the greatest source of irreconcilable meanings within the conceptual frame is the identity. Your identity is a collection of conflicting meanings, treatments and effects, and ideal types and values that don’t gel together to create a cohesive character. Simply put, most people suffer from depression because they’re trying to be different versions of themselves at the same time and it’s taking a mental and physical toll on them. Things like trying to be authentic yet conformist, self-confident but desperate for validation and inclusion, responsible yet unaccountable, self-reliant but group dependent, generous but selfish, compassionate but callous and self-serving, honest but secretive and manipulative (etc), all serve to create and exacerbate a polluted mind state.
Short of defining physical traits, every part of the identity is just an idea. And when ideas don’t align properly both your conceptual frame and natural mind take note of and cling to discrepancies. When things are left in an unsettled state your mind puts a pin in them until they’re reconciled. This is what ultimately creates the residual effect commonly referred to as depression.
Interpersonal conflicts, group conflicts, internal conflicts, conflicting meanings and values, nebulous feelings and beliefs, belief in general, both outward and internal deceptions, secrets, injustices (be they perceived, experienced or created), self-justification, media and gaming story arcs and content (especially unresolved tensions, e.g., dramas and unfinished quests or storylines), fantasies and unrealized desires (etc) — all coalesce to create a polluted mind state. A polluted mind state ultimately forces the ego parasite to work tirelessly to both maintain the conceptual frame and mine food from the human host.
The ego (hippocampus) mines food from its host by using perception-apperception (which again, in conjunction with the identity form the conceptual frame — a secondary thought process belonging to the parasite which supplants the would be natural thought process in the mind of the human host) to alter how reality is experienced in the host’s mind, thus compelling (coercing) the host to pursue and indulge in substances and behaviors that will force their body to produce hormones and neurotransmitters in higher volume.
The hippocampus feeds on chemicals like dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, vasopressin, insulin, epinephrine, norepinephrine, cortisol and others just to name a few (see types of hormone and neurotransmitter receptors in the hippocampus). And while the parasite should consume a balanced diet of hormones and neurotransmitters, a good deal of which should be serotonin, its preferred and primary food choice is dopamine.
In the simplest terms, from the outside looking in what humans call depression is really just a bug in the brain weaponizing the conceptual frame against its host towards making the host do more to feed it.
And for the record, the ego is not the actual person, nor is it the personality (so to speak), it’s just a bug using the person as a vehicle and domicile.
From the ego’s vantage point, depression is just being hangry. Boredom, which is a milder form of depression, is what humans experience when the parasite is hungry, and depression is what happens when the parasite gets hangry — frustrated, enraged, violent and eager to take its frustrations out on its host for not doing more to feed it (which, sadly enough, can even lead people to suicide).
From the host’s side of the equation, the parasite’s violence feels like an undefinable, inarticulable hunger pang that manifests as feelings of helplessness, restlessness, destitution, rage and insatiability.
Let’s connect this chain of causality real quick…
In efforts to keep the conceptual frame intact, the hippocampus must expend an extraordinary amount of energy. The conceptual frame is what the ego uses to control and thus feed from the host. The more polluted the conceptual frame gets is the more it distorted and rigid it becomes, which causes it to stress fracture and break down. A compromised conceptual frame makes the parasite work even harder to control and feed from the host, which necessarily compels it to put more pressure on the host to produce hormones and neurotransmitters in higher volume.
Just imagine a wizard or witch created a fantasy world in which they tricked you into doing things that benefited them in the real world, but, the more magic they expended trying to keep the illusion going was the more they ultimately needed to take from you.
The less the parasite consumes from the host is the smaller and weaker it gets — hence, an explanation for why people who’ve been psychologically damaged over the course of years tend to have smaller hippocampi…
This is compounded by the fact that the more the parasite feeds is the more its appetite increases, which means the more it eats is the more it wants to eat.
This “work harder, consume more, then work harder to consume more” cycle is what causes emotional volatility, and ultimately leads to the phenomenons commonly referred to as “addiction” and “psychosis”.
In the simplest terms, addiction is trying to feed an invisible hunger and/or satisfy an invisible appetite with substances and behaviors that have nothing to do with the true physical needs of the affected party.
Psychosis is an inability to distinguish what happens in reality from what’s happening in idealism: the imagination — the inner world.
The perception-apperception creates an ideal and/or imaginary model of the world — an interface for hosts to interact with and interpret reality through. The more time a person spends interacting with their modeled version of reality is the more removed from actual reality they become. If you spend too much time within, and thus become overly-reliant on the conceptual frame, the natural thought process atrophies and the mind ultimately becomes allergic to and intolerant of truth and reality; truth being “what’s consistent with and actual within reality”.
A polluted mind state is what causes the ego to overtax itself in efforts to mine food from the host. The harder it has to work is the more it has to eat. The more it has to eat is the more it distorts reality in the mind of the host and the deeper it draws the host into idealism, towards getting them to chase who or whatever will force their bodies to feed it.
The polluted mind state produces mental rigidity, which is in essence an inability to adjust to and tolerate, or in many cases even perceive things that don’t align with or readily accommodate the conceptual frame. Mental rigidity is what you call it when the need to keep the frame of reference intact is so powerful that it causes the parasite and subsequently host to respond aggressively to any and all things that conflict with it.
In addition to consuming from the host, the parasite must necessarily put pressure on the host to distance themself from any and all things that threaten to undermine or destroy (create conflicts or “cognitive dissonance” within) the conceptual frame. The ego forces its host into fight or flight mode, which then compels them to either destroy or retreat from who or whatever’s perceivably threatening it.
So how does the ego put pressure on the host? Again, by using perception-apperception to alter reality in the host’s mind towards influencing the host to either pursue and indulge in substances and behaviors that will force their bodies to produce chemicals in higher volume, or target people and things that threaten the conceptual frame with rage in efforts to create distance and separation from them — a process which, ironically, results in dopamine production. Abuse (that is, the act of transferring rage into people or things) causes the body to produce dopamine — hence, why so many people are addicted to abusing others.
Targeting others with rage can include anything ranging from competition (which is attempting to dominate and subdue others towards domesticating and exploiting them) to outright attempts to damage or destroy (physically, mentally, emotionally or socially injure people with the expressed intent of neutralizing or terminating) them.
All of this falls back to a parasite trying to feed itself.
Here are a few examples of how the ego parasite works…
Say for instance the ego parasite wants insulin from the host (or more accurately, the dopamine that gets released along with insulin), it can use perception-apperception to alter reality in the host’s mind, causing the host to believe that they desire sweet and fatty foods. If the parasite wants oxytocin, vasopressin (or more accurately the dopamine that gets released along with them) it can make the host desire love, affection, attention from others or physical activity, etc. If the parasite seeks to diminish or destroy people or things that threaten the conceptual frame it can make the host experience envy, panic, insecurity or rage, etc.
The list goes on and on.
It should be noted that hormones and neurotransmitters are generally released as bundles. When the host enters into the narcissistic/parasitic mind state, the only thing the hippocampus is searching for is dopamine — meaning the other chemicals are happenstance to the dopamine they’re either directly or by way of system output pair-bonded to. So, per the above example, in the parasitic mind state the ego might use perception to make the host desire foods that raise the insulin level, however, in such instances the insulin is happenstance to the dopamine released along with it.
Most, I’d say north of 90% of the unresolved tensions in the conceptual frame are various forms of guilt, shame and trauma.
Guilt is anxiety: the fear or anticipation of facing penalty (punishment) for doing or being something shameful.
Shame is the hurt and/or emotional discomfort that manifests as feelings of lacking, defectiveness, inadequacy, incompetence, worthlessness, helplessness, hopelessness and self loathing people experience as a result of being or feeling judged, that is, being viewed and potentially treated unfavorably by others (or even viewing themselves unfavorably — yes, the ego parasite does judge and punish its host). Shame is the sense of devaluation people experience as a result of not being “ideal”, that is, worthy of existence itself, or worthy of consideration, inclusion and rewards from others.
There are two main reasons for why people experience shame. There’s shame for not being ideal, that is, for feeling damaged, lacking or defective in some way, and then there’s shame people experience for the negative impacts they make on others and reality at large. The first type of shame derives from social norms and values, or more accurately aspirations pertaining to them, while the second stems from natural awareness for the debts we incur to others and reality at large.
Trauma isn’t psychological injury unto itself, but instead a latent yet intense phobia of disempowerment that sources to life events in which people either weren’t strong enough to protect themselves from harm or powerful enough to capture things they felt they needed for safety and survival.
Where does guilt come from? It’s a direct product of punishment. What is punishment? It’s what you call it when someone uses another as a vessel to transfer rage, insecurities and feelings of powerlessness and uncertainty into, under the guise of consequence. Guilt is the anticipation of violence linked to shame.
We’ve been groomed to believe that if we lack social value it means we’re not worthy of rewards (love, consideration, attention or inclusion), only punishment (injury — and by extension of injury, disempowerment: being stripped of ability, presence and authority). Shame necessarily precedes punishment, as any unfavorable outcome not linked to shame isn’t punishment, but instead consequence or misfortune.
Everything you feel makes you less than ideal and worthy of consideration, inclusion and love stores up in your mind and adds to your polluted mind state. Just think of it like an app eating up tons of storage and data on your phone plan (TikTok, I’m looking at you).
Another thing to take into account is how unresolved issues affect your natural mind. Your natural awareness is linked to reality itself. Humans call natural awareness “the conscience”, which manifests as a gut feeling that lets people know when their actions, interactions and the impacts they make on others are aligned with or in violation of reality. The natural link between all life forms and reality is called “intuition” (instinct).
Whether you’re aware of it or not, your conscience keeps a detailed record of every impact you make on reality and others performing within it. Whenever you transgress against or create imbalances within reality you’re innately made aware of them — meaning every person instinctively knows when something they’re doing is harmful. Every single good and bad thing you’ve done…every instance in which you’ve stolen balance and potential from reality stores up in your natural mind and is relayed to your conceptual frame as a “debt to reality” until you’ve either healed the wounds you’ve created, or done work to offset imbalances you’ve caused or contributed to.
Often times we feel shame because of what and how we are, but more often than not we feel shame because of things we do or have done to others. When you know you’ve done something wrong, your natural self (the part of you that intuitively recognizes balance and harmony) wants to bring resolution to the matter, while your ego wants to brush it aside and get back to pursuing its own interests.
Unfortunately, there’s no such thing as self-justification. The ego cannot absolve itself or host of wrongdoing, and a failure to restore balance to people and things affected by shameful (selfish, aggressive, destructive, parasitic) actions and behaviors — things you innately recognize as wrong and worthy of punishment, ultimately convert into this laundry list of IOUs that builds up in the conceptual frame, and starts delaying and eroding the cognitive process.
Funny thing about anticipating violence is that it can trigger you into a violent (defensive, adversarial) mind state yourself…
If you’ve been successfully domesticated (that is, if your mind and spirit have been broken by representations of social power and authority) then the thought of punishment may strike fear in you. If however your spirit is considerably untamed (or even untamable), then punishment isn’t perceived as “justice” in your mind, but instead as attempted assault — which in turn makes shame, or anything that causes one to experience shame, for all intents and purposes a ‘declaration of war’ to the perceiver. Gaslighting, deflection, scapegoating and blame, and physical, psychological and verbal assaults are all desperate lengths people go to in efforts to avoid experiencing shame and guilt.
If put into a statement it’d go something like “If you make me feel shame, and subsequently guilt — as though I’m lacking and worthy of punishment (assault, devaluing, exclusion, etc) then you’re necessarily trying to kill me, and I’m going to kill you first or at the very least take you out with me!”
**Interesting side note: You don’t generally experience equal amounts of guilt and shame. You usually feel one more than the other. People who experience more guilt (the anticipation of violence linked to shame) tend to be aggressive, while people who experience more shame (the fear of judgment marked by feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness) tend to be elusive, passive and timid. In more common terms, people who experience more shame than guilt tend to be codependent narcissists, and people who experience more guilt than shame tend to be aggressive (abusive, malignant) narcissists.
The more you know (star-swipe)…
BTW, codependency is on the narcissism spectrum, as narcissism is an addiction to dopamine, and codependent narcissists are addicted to the dopamine highs they get from receiving validation and hope from abusers.
This brings us to trauma, which again is a latent but extreme phobia of disempowerment (not to worry, we’re getting into narcissism in the coming section)…
Whenever you’re punished by someone, more than anything you’re disempowered, that is, stripped of ability and authority. Punishment is disempowerment, and the fear of being caught and punished for doing or being something shameful creates the phobia of disempowerment, which again, eats up a massive amount of storage space and subsequently processing power in the conceptual frame.
In sequential order it goes 1. shame, 2. guilt, 3. punishment and 4. trauma.
Shame cannot be reconciled until the source of shame is neutralized. Unfortunately, the source of shame is rarely if never what its perceived as, meaning who or whatever makes you feel shameful in the moment more than likely isn’t the reason for why you experience shame. Feelings of inadequacy or cognizance of wrongdoing are what cause people to experience shame; and if you don’t neutralize sources of shame then you can’t effectively rid yourself of guilt, meaning you’ll anticipate some form of reprisal (punishment: violent reaction) for being or doing something shameful. Guilt (the anticipation of violence) will either deplete you or give you anxiety, and thus make you elusive (timid) or aggressive.
Punishment does nothing to rectify or offset shameful things, as punishment is not true natural consequence. Punishment is and/or represents entities with power using their authority to transfer rage into situationally disadvantaged people or things under the guise of consequence. Consequence is the natural progression of causality. It has nothing to do with authority or punishment. If you trip, fall and injure yourself, the fall and injury are consequences of tripping. It is not punishment, as reality does not benefit, feel empowered or relieved by you falling. Consequence teaches while punishment injures for amusement and satisfaction (hurting things for dopamine). When people use teaching moments as opportunities to relieve themselves of anger, those targeted with their rage learn to become phobic of disempowerment — which is ultimately what punishment does. Punishment doesn’t teach, it traumatizes.
Shame, guilt, punishment and trauma cannot be reconciled, as they’re “open ended problems” within the conceptual frame. And by open ended problems I mean they’re comprised of and/or represent variables you can’t assign static values to, or “solve for x”, because they necessarily entail missing information that cannot be surmised from one end. In other words, you can’t absolve yourself of shame, only those you feel judged by can. You can’t absolve yourself of guilt, only those you fear reprisal from and/or feel shame towards can. This indicates that you can’t actually overcome the phobia of disempowerment all by yourself, as it’s based in guilt and shame. Punishment registers as assault and injustice in the mind, and ultimately represents an affected party having to abdicate their autonomy to a predator — someone who uses (or potentially could use) them as a vessel to dump rage and other negative feelings into.
Shame is linked to the identity. Guilt is linked to the identity. Trauma is what both creates and mutates the identity — the identity being a defense mechanism that people acquire, hone and use to keep themselves safe and viable within social settings. Punishment (being the target of violence from someone else) creates injustice in the mind.
All of these unresolved tensions and lack of resolutions build up over time to create a dissonant mind state, especially if nothing is done to reconcile tensions and bring balance back to the conceptual frame.
Narcissism is the addiction to dopamine, which manifests as an addiction to chasing happiness (fun, excitement and entertainment), comfort (pleasure or relief) or security (validation, attention, authority, control). The addiction to chasing and acquiring units, or more accurately, false representations of happiness, comfort and security is born from trauma.
Narcissism actually has two parts to it. From a bio-mechanical standpoint it’s an addiction to dopamine and from the experiential side of things its an addiction to chasing happiness, comfort or representations of security, e.g. validation, authority (money, power, attention, respect) and control. Secondly, from the affective side of things, narcissism is an addiction to self-idealizing and self worship, which is marked by feelings of entitlement, self-justification, and adjoining addictions to competition and rage-venting. In simpler terms, narcissism is an addiction to propensities, actions and behaviors that raise dopamine levels in the body.
In my work I call narcissism the parasitic mind state, because in the simplest terms its what you call it when the perceptive outlook switches to gaming mode, and thus causes those affected by it to view and approach all things through zero sum thinking — which is in essence, “Everything is a competition, and winning is survival! In order for me to win you must lose, and I don’t care about who or whatever’s affected by me winning because winning equals happiness, comfort and security, and happiness, comfort and security equal life!” Parasitism is living and benefiting at others’ expense; and the core principle behind zero sum thinking is living and benefiting to the detriment of others.
The parasitic mind state tends to view and treat happiness, comfort and security like finite and limited resources. It conflates dopamine production and consumption (both of which are internal processes) with the situational and psychological stimulations that elicit it. “There’s not enough happiness, comfort and security for everyone, there’s only enough for me and mine! This means I must steal happiness, comfort and security from others in order to ensure that I’ll never be without! In fact, having the ability to steal happiness, comfort and security from others gives me added layers of happiness, comfort and security!! It’s me against the world — me over you!”
Dopamine is the ego parasite’s food of choice, especially when the parasite’s been overtaxed and malnourished. Again, chemicals are pair bonded, so often times the ego will chase epinephrine (excitement) specifically for the dopamine attached to it (and/or it’s comprised of). Serotonin is a much better option for regulating the conceptual frame, however, the ego’s go to food choice is dopamine, followed closely by chemicals its most often pair bonded to.
Psychological injury is usually the initial cause of a polluted mind state. It causes the ego to work overtime to create, restore or maintain the identity — which again, is a defense mechanism manifest as a collection of effects that serve to keep people safe and viable within social settings. And when people get psychologically injured in their developmental years, the hippocampus gets overtaxed just trying to create a bypass (an escape from reality) that will allow them to function in both social and natural settings. As such, it tends to seek dopamine in place of other hormones and neurotransmitters, which is why trauma (the phobia of disempowerment) and narcissism (the addiction to dopamine and/or chasing false representations of happiness, comfort and security) go hand in hand.
Narcissists chase trend, pleasures, personality effects and enhancements, attention and inclusion, power, control and authority (which is the ability to impose will onto others and/or empower themselves at others’ expense), thrills and excitement — basically anything that will force their bodies to produce more dopamine. And because the ego cannot differentiate happiness from comfort or security, more often than not people unconsciously conflate the act of disempowering others and/or empowering themselves at other’s expense with comfort, security and happiness.
This explains why narcissists are impulsive, reckless, abusive, selfish and self-serving, conniving, and often times willing to sacrifice anyone and anything, even their own lives and safety just trying to feed their vices in the moment. A narcissist’s sense of loyalty is to their vice, not to those around them. The ego parasite’s (hippocampus’) loyalty is to dopamine, not to its host’s body, life circumstance or general wellbeing. Who or whatever’s fun and/or represents happiness, comfort or security is who or whatever the narcissist will chase — that is, at least until who or whatever they’re chasing no longer represents happiness, comfort and security to them; at which point the idealized person or object will be discarded like crack residue in a used pipe.
Also, remember that validation produces dopamine as validation is an extension of security, which means narcissists will be drawn to and/or seek to align themselves with who or whatever helps them self-worship and self-idealize.
Oddly, this also explains why narcissists are usually awful in romantic and even familial relationships. It’s because they’re only in it for the dopamine — which is usually only intense during the honeymoon (idealizing) phase, and should ultimately be replaced with and/or subsidized by serotonin, oxytocin, vasopressin (etc).
Narcissists lack the ability to pair bond or form meaningful relationships with others because their hippocampus is seeking dopamine in place of other regulatory hormones and neurotransmitters.
Once dopamine production from the idealizing phase starts to wane, most narcissists switch up relationship dynamics in efforts to get a new form of supply from hosts by abusing, that is, transferring their rage and frustrations into targeted parties. Again, rage-dumping (injuring…destroying people and things for amusement and satisfaction) boosts dopamine production in the body.
For narcissists, even sexual intimacy is ruled by dopamine. Dopamine acts in place of oxytocin, or more accurately, is given priority over oxytocin, which is what leads to sex detached from intimacy and ultimately sexual promiscuity. In such cases, the erogenous zones get primed to only respond to representations of fun and excitement — that is, as opposed to intimacy, which causes people to chase thrills and kinks in lieu of experiencing full arousal and reaching the pinnacle of sexual climax through symbiotic union.
Every single problem in the world is a direct result of dopamine addicts doing the most to feed their addictions. Most times narcissist have tunnel vision, and can only see the most direct paths to dopamine production and/or whatever yields the highest dopamine output.
Since dopamine is given priority over serotonin in the narcissist’s brain, the hippocampus has trouble regulating anger and other complex emotions. Narcissists get addicted to the dopamine rush that comes from venting rage — hence, why there are so many abusers and rage addicts in the world today. In the parasitic mind state, the hippocampus (which again, I contend is a parasite) takes complete control of the host and causes them to do erratic and volatile things just trying to comfort, soothe and feed itself.
Traumatization, the extreme phobia of disempowerment is a strong indicator that a person is suffering from a polluted mind state — a state in which the conceptual frame has been overloaded, compromised, and the hippocampus overtaxed by its efforts to keep the frame of reference intact. By this I mean, when you’ve been traumatized and/or have become phobic of disempowerment, you get attached to and become deathly afraid of the loss, minimization or invalidation of identity features and personality effects.
Simply put, you become a hoarder of meanings and character traits, and get afraid to let go of them even when or if they conflict with each other and create cognitive dissonance in your mind. The phobia of disempowerment is what causes people to hoard objects — which, more often than not come to represent happiness, comfort and security in the form of meanings and identity features in their mind. They become deathly afraid of “what if”, as in “What if I let go of this ________ (defense mechanism) and need it later? What happens if I let go of this thing I believe keeps me safe and viable, and then find myself without power when I need it most?”
Trauma causes the hippocampus to work overtime, which in turn creates (for lack of a better expression) a “calorie deficit”, which causes it to pressure the host to do more to stimulate dopamine production and distance themself (destroy or retreat) from people and things that threaten the conceptual frame; the diminution and/or vanquishing of threats increasing dopamine production.
This model explains 100% of the behaviors attributed to narcissistic personality disorder.
There’s a chain of causality that explains narcissism quite simply…
Consumption (be it the ingestion and/or experience of pleasurable substances, objects or effects, or the acquisition of identity features or enhancements thereof — which, more often than not get conflated with happiness and comfort) stimulates the hypothalamus, gut and adrenal glands to produce dopamine. The perception of security boosts dopamine production. Validation (attention, inclusion and affirmation — which is an extension of security) boosts dopamine production. Even the hope for or anticipation of validation produces dopamine (hence, the addiction to fantasy and other forms of escapism). People get addicted to winning because in social contexts winning translates into security, and the perception of security ramps up dopamine production. People who are addicted to winning are addicted to competition, because even ideas and practices associated with winning cause the hypothalamus, gut and adrenal glands to produce dopamine (or more accurately, the dopamine pair-bonded to epinephrine and norepinephrine). If you’re addicted to competition then you’re necessarily addicted to dominating and imposing your will on others, which means you’re more than likely addicted to authority and control. Gaining authority and control over others boosts dopamine production. If you’re addicted to authority and control then you’re prone to tyranny and abuse, because tyranny and abuse (rage-transfer) stimulates dopamine production. If you’re addicted to tyranny and abuse then you’re addicted to judging and punishing others for your amusement and satisfaction — both of which raise dopamine levels in the body.
To the hippocampus, attention equals dopamine. Inclusion equals dopamine. Following trends equals dopamine. Rage-venting/abuse equals dopamine. Entertainment equals dopamine. Artificial visual and auditory stimulation (media, e.g., tv and music) equals dopamine. Alcohol and elicit drug use equals dopamine. Sexual orgasms equal dopamine. Drama, excitement and thrill-seeking equals dopamine. Comedy (humor/humiliation) equals dopamine. Delicious food equals dopamine. Self-worship and self-idealizing equals dopamine. Affirmation (the perception of being “good” and “right”) equals dopamine.
This is how you think, behave and prioritize when you’re a dopamine addict. This is how you are when you’re a narcissist.
In neuroscience, what I call the parasitic mind state is often referred to as the reptilian brain. “Reptilian brain” refers to the brain stem, which is the structure thought to control survival-related tasks, e.g., breathing, fighting, eating, fleeing, reproduction, etc. In reality however, the hippocampus is generally running the show, as it has the ability to enslave both the brain stem and basal ganglia, and use idealism to take the host’s consciousness offline and act in lieu of them. By this I mean when people are in the “reptilian brain” what’s actually happening is the hippocampus is in peril, and thus bypasses the host’s consciousness and hacks the other brain systems towards forcing hosts to do more to rev up dopamine production (and in some instances, even preserve itself).
“Blacking out” is what you call it when the hippocampus seizes complete control of the host after taking the host’s consciousness offline. In such instances, it enslaves the brain stem, basal ganglia and other cognitive systems towards steering the host to produce more dopamine at any cost.
Every narcissistic proclivity and propensity is geared towards dopamine production and consumption. All of the drama (excitement born from unresolved tensions), the deceptions (self-idealizing manifest as misleading those thought to be “inferior”), the abuse and cruelty (rage-transfer) — it’s all driven by pressure to raise dopamine levels in the body in efforts to feed and repair an injured or undernourished hippocampus. Ironically, the hippocampus is causing its own starvation, which makes this the most perplexing puzzle ever…
So in the simplest terms, the parasitic mind state is what you call it when the hippocampus either gets injured or overtaxed, and consequently hijacks the cognitive systems and starts trying to feed and repair itself with dopamine instead of consuming a balanced diet of hormones and neurotransmitters — what it needs to properly nourish and regulate itself. Just think of it like a little kid getting sick and trying to cure their illness with candy.
Narcissism, the parasitic mind state, is the “addict” mind state. Addiction is and/or represents unconscious consumption, that is, consumption divorced from purpose which works to the detriment of all, including the needs and general wellbeing of the consumer. Parasites create cascades of imbalances wherever they go just trying to benefit, comfort and feed themselves.
This brings us to the most important concept missing from the discourse on narcissism, and that is compulsion…
There’s a difference between motivation and compulsion. Motivation is a call to action based on or taken with hope attached to an outcome. Compulsion is action taken unconsciously, driven by a desire to experience some type of feeling (satisfaction or relief), or feed some type of appetite. Motivations represent conscious thinking, whereas compulsions represent unconscious actions and behaviors.
This is why we need to adjust how we’ve been approaching narcissism. Narcissism is an addiction unto itself. The reason why narcissistic tendencies are incredibly easy to spot and predict is because they’re pattern-based. If people are unconsciously adhering to specific behavioral patterns then it indicates they’re being compelled towards them. So even though every person’s 100% responsible for the impacts they make on others and the world around them, it’s not actually narcissists’ fault that they are the way they are. It’s not as simple as saying “Change your behavior!” to someone who’s being forcefully compelled to pursue and indulge in substances and behaviors by an entity they can’t see and don’t know how to affect.
Oddly, narcissism (injured or overtaxed hippocampi trying to soothe and repair themselves) is at the root of all addiction. The reason for why all forms of addiction are marked by the same propensities and proclivities is because they all source to and/or represent the parasitic mind state. Theft, abuse, deception, neglect, self-indulgence and self-idealizing, escapism, deflection, blaming and scapegoating others, a willingness to sacrifice anyone or anything to feed vices — the same proclivities that would apply to heroin and methamphetamine abusers apply to dopamine addicts and/or narcissists: happiness, comfort and security chasers.
Depression is just a mind overwhelmed with mental litter forcing the hippocampus to work harder.
Unlike psychologically damaging events that affect mental systems directly though, depression is more like the mental system being overrun and overwhelmed with pollution. Just think of it like the difference between a city getting hit by a bomb and one being destroyed by its inhabitants through pollution, greed, corruption and poor maintenance. Think of the difference between a clean functional space vs a hoarder house. It’s the same principle…
When you have too many conflicting meanings, identity features and unresolved tensions in the mind, psychologically damaging events take a much greater toll on your cognitive system.
When a system is in a toxic state due to abuse and neglect, all it takes is for one or two notable events to send it spiraling out of control. They don’t have to be serious events either, if the system is already on the brink of failure something little can come along and have a detrimental impact. Just think of a person whose immune system is compromised as a result of poor dietary or lifestyle choices. Any old pathogen can infiltrate and do irreparable damage to them. Any injury can throw their whole body system out of whack.
This is exactly what happens to a person whose mind state is polluted. All it takes is for one bad event to send them into a deep depression cycle. You could be watching a movie and see a sad or even happy scene and be depressed for days on end because your ego’s working overtime to keep your frame of reference intact.
As a result of this, your frame of reference starts teetering, and the hippocampus burns through dopamine at an astronomical rate just trying to stabilize your self image, perception and apperception.
An easy way to describe depression, at least from the affected side of things is its what you call it when you’ve got a bunch of unresolved issues and nebulous beliefs clogging up the cognitive process, eroding the conceptual frame and forcing the hippocampus to do an extraordinary amount of work in efforts to keep you “sane”.
Your mind is littered with a bunch of unresolved tensions and conflicting meanings, and your natural awareness recognizes that your life is in danger, as your conceptual frame is beginning to fragment and chip away. That feeling of imminent threat? Often times that’s your conscience — your innate mind trying to warn your ego parasite (via the perceptive system) that it’s in peril of self-termination.
The ego’s thought process is based in idealism (imagination). In fact, all viral-parasitic life forms run on idealism, and idealism is fundamentally divorced from reality. The more you rely on feelings, beliefs and outside sources to process information and reality for you is the deeper and deeper you fall into idealism.
Your mind is either synched up with reality or lost in the imagination. This means you’re either observing and reasoning, which is consuming, organizing, processing and outputting information, ideas and expressions in real time, or you’re forgoing that process and blocking information and reality out in efforts to preserve the conceptual frame.
Again, the harder the ego has to work to preserve the conceptual frame is the more dopamine it burns through and the more pressure it puts on the host to produce. This creates a snowball effect in that the more time you spend in idealism is the more dependent you become on it — and as a result of that, the weaker your natural mind gets and the more your ego becomes volatile and aggressive.
But more dopamine is not the answer to dopamine dependence — which means more happiness, comfort and security is not the answer to a lack of happiness, comfort and security. Doing erratic things to feed the parasite’s hunger doesn’t make it go away — in fact, the more the hippocampus consumes dopamine is the hungrier it gets for it. As is the case with all forms of addiction, the more you feed the parasitic appetite is the more it grows.
This brings us to the most important piece of the puzzle, and that’s attitude…
What is your attitude? Your attitude is your disposition placed on a spectrum of mental elasticity — its the level of flexibility and adaptiveness you have towards specific things or things in general. The more elastic your disposition is is the more easily you can accept and adjust to things, information and ideas that conflict with or don’t edify your inner story. The more rigid your thinking is is the less you’ll understand and be willing to consider and adjust to things or conditions that don’t reflect the contents of your conceptual frame back to you. As such, the more mental elasticity you have is the more adaptive, considerate, sympathetic and empathetic you’ll be towards people and things, and the more mentally rigid you are is the more aggressive, competitive, combative and exploitive you’ll be towards people and things — most notably people and things that conflict with, threaten or undermine your conceptual frame.
A rotten attitude is just a sustained state of aggression born from mental rigidity. Aggression is a desire or compulsion to unburden oneself of stress by transferring rage into others and/or external values.
When you have a terrible attitude you react flippantly and aggressively to everything that doesn’t align with or verify your conceptual frame. You literally train yourself to become mentally rigid by refusing to reason, that is, process information and reality in real time and be honest with yourself and/or seek to align with conditions as they are in the real world.
The harder your hippocampus fights to preserve the conceptual frame is the more psychotic, aggressive, depressed and volatile you become. The more psychotic, aggressive, depressed and volatile you become is the more delusional you become, and the more dopamine your parasite will require in order to stop your frame of reference from teetering.
As I’m sure you’ve gathered already, the more polluted the conceptual frame is is the more rigid it becomes, and the less polluted it is is the more elastic it becomes. Your attitude directly correlates to how much garbage (unresolved tensions and conflicting meanings) you have in your mind.
The more narcissistic you are is the more aggressive and competitive you are. This happens as a result of your ego trying to preserve the conceptual frame. This is where training your attitude comes into play…
Only YOU have the power to change your position on the elasticity spectrum. Only you have the power to change your attitude.
You train your attitude (the level of mental elasticity you have towards things) in one of two ways…
You become rigid by only consuming and/or considering information that’s local and convenient to your identity — positively reinforcing your identity with information, ideas and effects that affirm your biases, presuppositions, feelings, beliefs and identity features, and negatively reinforcing your identity with information, ideas and effects that vilify people and things that conflict with or undermine your identity.
Conversely, you improve your mental elasticity by engaging your natural thought process. Reasoning is using the mind (innate mental faculties) to suss out what’s consistent with and actual within reality. Honesty is your will and effort to recognize and align yourself with reality — how things are, independent of what you think, feel or believe about them. Reasoning and honesty allow reality to calibrate, and thus heal your conceptual frame.
What most people call depression is really just a rotten attitude. A rotten attitude is mental rigidity that develops when people don’t use their innate mental faculties to process information and reality. Instead of adjusting to reality as it is in real time, most people rely almost exclusively on the conceptual frame, and then experience cognitive dissonance whenever reality or things and agents therein don’t validate or verify the correctness in and of their conceptual frame.
Cognitive dissonance causes you to experience fright and aggression (or what’s commonly known as the fight or flight response) which forces your ego parasite to burn through dopamine by overtaxing it, which in turn causes the ego to alter reality in your mind towards coercing you to pursue and indulge in substances or behaviors that will force your body to ramp up dopamine production.
Again, it’s a snowball effect. The more you rely on idealism: (your conceptual frame, which includes your identity) is the more hopelessly addicted to it you become.
In layman’s terms, narcissism is an addiction to the identity — an addiction to observing and enhancing the self image. In accurate terms, you have a hangry and undisciplined hippocampus going off on you because you keep encountering or doing things that disrupt the process it uses to mine food from you.
Mental rigidity is what creates cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance is an inability to reconcile, consider or come to terms with things that don’t align with the conceptual frame and/or reflect the identity and features of the actor back to them.
Cognitive dissonance precedes rage. Rage is a combination of insecurity, uncertainty, and panic over the perceived loss of power, coupled with an insatiable urge to empower self through the disempowerment of others. Rage necessarily entails a desire to transfer the above mentioned effects into others so as to unburden oneself of them.
Again, a rotten attitude is rage born from mental rigidity, which is the result of people not processing information and reality correctly. Instead of using reasoning and honesty to investigate and align themselves with conditions in reality, most people keep retreating into and trying to build out and enhance their identities. It’s a losing battle…
Another thing to note is that how developed your conceptual frame is has absolutely nothing to do with mental rigidity, especially pertaining to the identity. You can be adept in several knowledge systems and have an extensive knowledge set in general, yet still not be able to process information and reality properly when or if things conflict with your identity. You can still experience feelings of rage and aggression towards people and things that undermine or conflict with the story you tell yourself about the world around you and your place and value within it. Knowledge systems are (or at least can be) identity features, they’re not the identity in and of themselves. This is why theists, atheists, scientists, academics, philosophers and believers from all walks of life still experience rage towards people and things that disagree with them. Knowledge systems are (or at least should be) functions of the apperception, and the apperception and identity should not bleed into each other.
Your natural self is in sync with reality. It keeps a tally of your actions and the impacts you make on reality, and on how you affect people and things in the world around you. When your ego isn’t shaming you for not being ideal, your ego is feeling shame because it knows (and thus tries to block out and defeat) the tally sheet being kept by the authentic self. You remember every shameful, selfish, greedy, vain, depraved thing you’ve ever done. Reality simply won’t let you forget…
When the ego’s suffering it tries to comfort itself with dopamine. This causes the host to remain in search of ways and opportunities to capitalize on situations, people, phenomena or effects that will force their bodies to produce and consume dopamine — in the exact same way (well actually for the very same reason) that drug addicts are exploitive, opportunistic and manipulative, and constantly searching for people and things to take advantage of. This is just how the parasitic mind state works…
Curing the mind of narcissism, depression, trauma, addiction and psychosis is simply escaping from the parasitic mind state.
The very first step in healing the mind from narcissism, depression, trauma, addiction and psychosis is doing a massive brain dump, that is, clearing out the conceptual frame — getting rid of conflicting meanings and sources of tension within the apperception. That means you’ve got to rid your mind of mental clutter so that the hippocampus can start processing information and reality without overtaxing itself.
One of the biggest problems we’re faced with, specifically as it relates to managing the conceptual frame is that the identity inevitably bleeds into the apperception. When the apperception is full of identity features in lieu of truth-based facts — models of things that are consistent with and actual within reality, the conceptual frame gets all polluted, distorted, rigid and starts fragging out.
This means in order to clean up the apperception you’ve gotta clean out the identity — yes, that means you have to toss out and stop hiding behind all of the character traits and effects you’ve acquired and internalized through the years.
Dismantling the identity, or at the very least auditing and updating all of the meanings and effects you’ve internalized is the first step to reclaiming and properly regulating your thought process. This is accomplished through reasoning and honesty.
Forget about WHO you think you are (or want to be), and shift your focus to WHAT you are and aren’t.
This is where we have to start…
It’s like “Hey, I know I believe these things define me, but do they really? What’s real and unreal about this character I’m pretending to be and the effects I’m trying to adorn myself with? Well, I know learned this ‘fact’ in second grade, but I’ve also seen somewhere that it isn’t true. Let me do some investigating to find out what’s what.”
**Side Note: The ego deals in justice, and the natural mind deals in balance — and both injustice and imbalance cause the ego to overtax itself in efforts to stabilize the conceptual frame.
This is a two part problem. First you have to stabilize the apperception to stop the teetering effect (which again, causes the ego to work harder and burn through dopamine faster), and second you have to learn to regulate both hormone and neurotransmitter production and the consumption habits of the hippocampus. You need to starve the ego out and/or put it on a diet until it learns how to act right.
Healing the mind begins with clearing out the conceptual frame and giving it time to heal so that the identity can stop bleeding into the apperception. This process entails ditching the identity, and/or distancing self from things that serve to define and enhance the social character: the idealized self. All of the pageantry and deep social acting…all of the physical and social enhancements…everything that’s fake and designed to steer attention towards you for the sake of getting dopamine has to go.
You’re gonna have to do a brutal social detox. Withdrawal is what you call it when the hippocampus psychologically abuses you for not doing more to feed it. Withdrawal is when the hippocampus weaponizes the placebo effect (perception-apperception) against the host and tries to force the host to feed it.
You’ll have to tough it out and just let the parasite throw its little temper tantrum and rage out on you until it tuckers itself out. This is when you regain control over your mind.
You need the hippocampus in order to survive in this world, so you can’t exactly “kill the ego” so to speak, but you can most certainly put it in check. Either it cooperates with you and works to help you bring peace and balance into your life and the world around you, or you let that little sucker starve until it learns how to act right.
Again, the apperception should consist of “what”, as in “What is this, and what is that?”
The identity consists of “who”, as in “Who am I, and who is that?”
Who should not bleed into what or vice versa; and when it does, most meanings lose the ability to reconcile.
Clearing out the conceptual frame means reconciling conflicting meanings and other points of tension. You can liken a polluted mind state to a bevy of services you’ve subscribed to which debit your checking account every day. Every time something doesn’t reconcile it’s like opening a new account. Clearing out the conceptual frame is closing out all of the open accounts in your mind so that there’s a proper flow between information intake and output processes (or per the example, gaining awareness for how much money is actually coming in and going out of your bank account every month).
Who and what are you indebted to? Who have you wronged and how do you make it right? What imbalances have you caused, and how do you either restore balance to who or what you’ve negatively affected, or do things to offset the harm you’ve caused and contributed to? Who’s latched onto your account and is bleeding it dry just trying to benefit themselves at your expense? Why do you feel shame (embarrassment) for what and how you are, and how do you truly get over feelings of inadequacy and ineptitude? How do you stop fearing judgment and punishment from others and become truly brave and honest? How do you stop worrying about “who you are” and start focusing on what you are instead?
When you think about what therapy is, it’s basically what you call it when someone creates a space in which you can sort through and clear out your conceptual frame.
The more addicted to dopamine you are is the more corrupt you become. This means the more your conceptual frame is overloaded with beliefs and unresolved tensions is the harder your ego parasite has to work, which is the angrier it gets and the more aggressive, selfish and parasitic you become. When the mind is not actively engaged, corruption sets in and can use people as hosts or vessels to self-actualize through.
The socialization process corrupts the mind, that is, intentionally pollutes the conceptual frame towards getting humans into the parasitic mind state: hopelessly dependent on dopamine. This is how both society and corruption advance themselves as entities. When you have a rotten attitude as a result of your conceptual frame being overloaded and your hippocampus overtaxed, corruption can hijack your consciousness and use you to perpetuate and create imbalances as it continues to spread. Again, corruption (what human religions call “Satan”) is the essence and aura of disease, and people can fall under its spell whenever their minds are disengaged.
Awakening from the delusional state, that is, coming out of the mental and spiritual coma necessarily entails separating ‘who’ from ‘what’ in the mind. Overcoming the addiction to dopamine first requires you to recognize that it’s an addiction, it’s a problem, and that its a coping mechanism that’s causing more harm than benefit.
There’s idealism: the idealized state of things — the place in which nothing has to reconcile so long as it leads to happiness, and then there’s reality: the place where everything must reconcile and balance out — the place where all things have mechanism and systemic placement and purpose.
You’re either for reality or for corruption (via idealism). Unfortunately, you can’t be synched up with both. It’s one or the other. Which will you choose? Indulging your addiction to chasing happiness, comfort and security, or aligning yourself with and subsequently becoming stronger and more capable in reality?
We each get to choose.