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T-Bone

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T-Bone last won the day on October 25

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  1. Well, you’re talking about stuff way out of my league… I am not a mental health specialist – maybe you are (I don’t recall if you’ve mentioned that elsewhere). but if you want to rehash the issues that we’ve already discussed thus far of dealing with people with personality disorders, I lean toward what seems to be (from what I’ve read so far, anyway) a well-founded consensus in psychology that there are incurable personality disorders. That being said, I would also add that I’ve read about helpful and hopeful research, therapies and medicines in the mental health services (you mentioned one yourself - DBT) . I would not be so callous as to tell someone “There is no possibility of change for you”. If indeed the mental health specialists say a personality disorder is incurable, but they still continue to do research and develop therapies and medicines – that leads me to think they are reframing the problem – instead of curing the condition, they are creating ways for the patient to deal with it. That is helpful…hopeful…maybe not the kind of change you were expecting but it does change the experience for the patient - hopefully for the better -and for friends and family they interact with as well…maybe daily life becomes more tolerable for all involved. Mental health specialists reframing a problem is certainly a lot more comprehensive than someone like me dabbling in pat answers from the Bible or spewing out my tidbits of pop-psychology - - and what THEY do is so much more helpful because it’s from a different perspectives and specific knowledge and training - depending on the “assortment of specialties” in a scientific or medical team. Maybe it’s like a bunch of MacGyver-types trying to help someone get through or around an immoveable object in their pathway of the route they must take every day. They’re going to try and help the person move on…either go through or get around the immoveable object. Crawl / climb over it? Walk all the way around it? Burrow through it? Buy an ATV and go off-roading around it? Offer to be a friend and walk and talk with them on the detour? Maybe now the person doesn’t feel stuck…or as confused…overwhelmed…something has changed.
  2. Great post, Bolshevik – now we’re getting somewhere! I don’t have a problem with anything you just said – other than I would like to define some terms a little better and maybe we could find some more common ground. Authentic self – this is how I understand it when I think of authentic self – it’s basically the you that can be found at your absolute core. It is that part of you that cannot be defined by some job, hobbies, whether you’re married or single, whether you’re a parent or not. It’s a unique blend of your skills, experiences, wisdom, perceptions – stuff that makes you unique and may even drive you to seek ways of making known your thoughts and feelings – rather than what you believe you are supposed to be – going that route, gets into your adaptive self – what you do to survive in an environment that may actually challenge or threaten your authentic self. Example – I put on “Twig-face” when I go to fellowship, I’m all smiles and pleasant to others and say nothing about the elephant in the room – which happens to be squishing the $hit out of my expensive sofa, but it’s rumored he’s interested in the class so mum’s the word….I know, I know The Bible is “The Word”…oh never mind... smoking is outside and if you got ‘em smoke ‘em. Did anyone bring more Postum to Twig? …where was I ? oh yeah - this gets into psychological stuff like identity and my amateur understand of that is how that relates to our self-image, self-esteem and individuation, and how I as an individual sees myself both as a person and in relation to others…I understand what you’re saying “I believe there are people who cannot develop an authentic self” and I think the operative word in your statement is “develop” – which implies there's some work or effort involved on your part– …a process…change...growth…which necessitates there has to be something there to begin with. I remember from reading books on psychology about the study of personality – and I re-checked the idea on the Internet and found it mentioned on Wikipedia: “Personality psychology is a branch of psychology that studies personality and its variation among individuals. It aims to show how people are individually different due to psychological forces. "Personality" is a dynamic and organized set of characteristics possessed by a person that uniquely influences their environment, cognition, emotions, motivations, and behaviors in various situations. The word personality originates from the Latin persona, which means "mask".” From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personality_psychology And you may be pleased to note that “mask” was mentioned in that…Steven Pinker has a fascinating book “The Blank Slate” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Blank_Slate – that addresses traditional concepts of human nature and how that effects every aspect of our lives – how we live, how we interact with others, raise our kids, embrace or oppose certain ideologies, etc. One of the main ideas I got from the book is that we are NOT blank slates – but rather we become who we are now through an intertwining process of nature AND nurture. To back up and revisit vpw, Charles Manson and other tangents like can people like that change – I’ll offer three personal opinions. 1. This first opinion of mine reflects the reality of human nature, some 67 years of interacting with people and also goes along the lines of what Socks talked about – and so honestly in my opinion folks like vpw and Charles Mansion while they were ALIVE – I doubt if they would have changed… 2. My second opinion is from the professional-mental-health-wannabe-part-of me (yeah – in my dreams - I know, I know ) that thinks I should never give up on people – but to always offer help and hope… 3. My third opinion comes from my religious beliefs – from what I understand of the immediate and final picture of the redemptive plans of God. In the “here and now” we have the moral demands of the Bible to guide us in reconciling ourselves to God and to each other…and I’m not shy in admitting how shortsighted I was of God’s ultimate plan and gargantuan love – I’m still processing some ideas of Bell’s book “Love Wins” but you can get some idea of God’s freewill-honoring redemptive plan if you read my comments of the book in the link of my previous post. So, to sum it up – I think everyone has an authentic self – a core of what makes them who they are – this can be a composite of good and bad stuff – lovely healthy fruit bearing trees and some choking weeds and thorns – actual quantities of each will vary person to person depending on how they “managed” their “garden”. Is there a point of no-return when and where someone neglects self-examination, self-improvement, etc. and they are a lost cause – no authentic self? Not sure – on a practical level, from what I’ve witnessed in life so far – I think so – but I gotta remind myself about Saul’s / Paul’s 180 degree turnaround…It can happen. The soul: I no longer follow TWI’s trichotomy of humans being body, soul, and spirit – and if you’re an unbeliever you’re just body and soul – an “empty floating by" as LCM put it. To counter what TWI taught, I would have to get into what is the biblical definition of death and the fact that people are still referred to as bearing the image of God in the Old and New Test., long after the fall of man in Genesis 3…I believe the soul is the spiritual part of a person that is believed to give life to the body and in many religions besides Christianity is believed to live forever. So I believe everyone has a soul. It is the image of God - whatever that is - - and because of our fallen nature, it is a tarnished image of God. When I hear someone say “I looked into his eyes and it’s like he had no soul” – I interpret that as a figure of speech – not to be taken literally – but to simply indicate that the person appears to lack the ability to feel kindness, sympathy and empathy for others or maybe just meaning that person has no qualms about doing whatever the hell they want regardless of how it may impact others. well...that's my two cents on the subject...ain't sayin' it's right or wrong...just sayin' it's only worth about two cents...in Canadian money it's more or less.
  3. Answering in reverse order: I was not up all night; yesterday I was working on updating my GSC about me profile off and on from about 2:30pm to about 12:45am CST – it just so happened while I was online I got a notification you quoted me on this thread; I decided to make a few replies to you after which I went to bed about 1:32am; I was not sleep-posting ! Also I take issue with your statement “We're clearly talking past each other.” From the internet – “talk past each other” – “an idiom meaning: A situation where two or more people talk about different subjects while believing they are talking about the same thing.” Maybe that’s how you think it’s going. I have been following what points you’re trying to make – which necessitated me asking you very specific questions to give you a chance to clarify what you’re talking about…why don’t you review all our posts so far and see how many times I kept asking if YOU were speaking metaphorically …figuratively about there being no one behind the mask. I never got a straight answer from you. Don’t bother giving me homework and expect me to click on links or Google more about it – I’m having a discussion with YOU – not some teacher that I have to check back with periodically to make sure I’m correctly following this week’s assignment. And besides that, what doesn’t really help is the fact that if and when you respond to a question – it’s usually a brief cryptic one liner and/or you just post another link or toss out some reference to what Vanknin said. May I make a suggestion – quote him or anyone else all you want – but in doing so, would you also please put more of your own thoughts, opinions, analysis, critiques, extrapolations, etc. in the post. Then, it won’t be like some fifth-grade book report that merely quotes and mentions highlights of a book. Not that it’s perfect – but here is an example of putting my own thoughts out there after I read a book https://www.greasespotcafe.com/ipb/topic/24893-love-wins-a-book-about-heaven-hell-and-the-fate-of-every-person-who-ever-lived/?do=findComment&comment=607480 back to the last idea I’d like to revisit – you wondered if I was suggesting that VPW could change, and in a broader sense you seem to being saying that a malignant narcissist is no longer a person…thus incapable of changing or finding their authentic self since it evidently has “died” or gone away…so if you could – in your own words – elaborate on what I just mentioned from YOUR OWN VIEWPOINT – without sending me off on a great Googling adventure…by elaborate I mean you can respond by clarifying – refuting what I said – or correcting the way I phrased something – or filling in the gaps of my understanding – whatever – you are free to gab away – let’s pretend we’re having a conversation in person and don’t have any devices so we can’t look up something on the Internet – we’ll have to just go with what’s already in our heads.
  4. I’ll respond to your last point first: from the Internet - “Taunting – (adjective) intended to provoke someone in an insulting or contemptuous manner; (verb) provoke or challenge (someone) with insulting remarks; reproach (someone) with something in a contemptuous way.” I've had no intention of insulting you or treating you contemptuously. I apologize if that's the way I come off...I'll try to be more clear in the future. Then in reverse order: I’m of the opinion the idea of death frightens most people – since it seems threatens our self-preservation. Changing your mind is not the same thing as magical thinking / “operating” the law of believing. Changing one’s own mind is a process that occurs innumerable times throughout the day for every human being. That's just how we live, think, react, survive, communicate, learn, express emotions, etc. Please don’t read anything into my posts or misconstrue my posts to suggest something that they clearly do not say. This back and forth dialog / one asks and the other responds is how people normally have a conversation. Once again – there’s no taunting going on from my side of the conversation.
  5. Not everyone has what? A before time? do you mean they were born into TWI? okay - so instead of reconnecting with who they were before TWI - since they don’t have that before TWI-time - don’t you think it’s possible they can work at discovering their authentic self by looking past the adaptive self - mask - that they assumed ? I don’t understand the dilemma you’re presenting never mind my own experience - how is it that a child is raised in a family’s religion but at some point - grows up or simply explores and finds he doesn’t want to follow that anymore? you’re gonna have to be more specific on “before time” and “ for various reasons” you make it sound like it’s nearly impossible for some people to change their minds…guess what? It happens a lot more than you or I would care to count!
  6. as to who is on first - you were - you started this thread masks by definition cover something - from the Internet: "Mask (noun) a covering for all or part of the face, worn as a disguise, or to amuse or terrify other people. synonyms: disguise · veil · false face · domino · stocking mask · fancy dress · visor · vizard ;a covering worn over the mouth and nose in order to reduce the transmission of infectious agents, or to prevent the inhalation of pollutants and other harmful substances. synonyms: matte · photomask · shadow mask · masking · masking tape a cosmetic preparation spread over the face and left for some time to cleanse and improve the skin. "this exfoliating mask helps clear your pores and leaves your skin feeling soft and healthy" a likeness of a person's face in clay or wax, especially one made by taking a mold from the face." so much for sense and nonsense...night night - I gotta get up early tomorrow
  7. Yes I know what you meant - I don't need to google masks of a narcissist. but you said... and I quote "Onto the mask and behind it? People relate to the masks, via projection. Unmask them and there's nothing there. " so WHO is putting on the mask?!?! who or what is the mask covering up?!?! the "projection" has a source - does it not? you do realize that it takes a sentient being - a real person - in a willful act to project an image...a mask to be seen by others how do you think FBI and police profilers work to uncover bad guys posing as someone else?
  8. you're speaking metaphorically - if I put on a mask - say I'm a poser and come on Grease Spot and make like I'm some kind of genius or Bible scholar (we do get people like that here occasionally) - now what happens if Grease Spotters uncover my charade - through various questions and pointing out inaccuracies and contradictions in my little act? you mean to tell me there's nothing behind my mask? there is no sentient being putting on airs and interacting with others?
  9. I'm confused - you brought up two different situations there. if the person is literally dead - then yes the condition is not curable...to try to relate is futile unless you're a necromancer. if the person is Charles Manson - which I'm assuming you are referring to him when he was alive - I think you should ask any medical professional who has sworn to uphold the Hippocratic oath - ask them how they would view Charles Manson's case - would they say he's not curable? would it be futile for them to try to relate to someone like him? you said "To try to empathize as if it would help is dangerous as far as I know." - yes that is a distinct possibility - and bearing in mind safety and security protocols that I assume would be in place if we're talking about a legitimate and professional facility - that is something that comes with the territory of the medical profession...for some reason one of my Dad's war stories comes to mind. He was a medic in World War II and received two purple hearts. On one mission, a German sniper was picking off the guy's in my Dad's unit like they were sitting ducks. Our guys finally wounded the German sniper...The captain ordered my Dad to tend to the wounded enemy. The whole time my Dad was patching him up he was handling him so gruffly and growling at him face to face how he was bad for killing and wounding so many of our guys...My Dad would always make me laugh at how overbearing he was to this enemy soldier and treated him like a little wayward schoolboy - the soldiers eyes were as big as cue balls and his facial expression was stiff with fear as my Dad administered some tough medicine -
  10. great question ! and that's what I was getting at in my post: if we shoot for empathy, that would involve trying to get under their mask...empathy is trying to see things through their eyes. it's to dig deep and try to find out why they see themselves as a nobody, a straight razor, or whatever else Charles Manson said. Look - I'm no psychologist or professional counselor - but do you think people in those capacities tried to help Manson? what did they do? Why don't you find out what therapies, regimens, treatments, etc. they provided for Manson - if any. how about some details? and after you find out all there is to know about what was done to help Manson - or if anything was done - would you please articulate what medical standpoint they administered said therapies from - or if they didn't do anything to or for him while he was incarcerated... so just to clarify my question - what was the reasoning behind whatever they did or did not do? Did they view him as a nobody? Did they try to get behind the masks? Was he offered any type of professional medical and mental health services? If he was offered any type of professional medical and mental health services - did he refuse them all? or certain ones? If he accepted any professional medical and mental health services - did he "follow the doctor's orders"? like we do when we go to the doctor with a high blood pressure problem. was he prescribed any medications for physical or mental health issues? If so - what were they? Did he take his meds?
  11. After some thought, I wanted to revise this “…that's why a betrayal is so hurtful, I guess... when someone you admire...respect...love...trust... but then they wind up stabbing you in the back.” I don’t think backstabbing really expresses the truly methodical and insidious nature of wierwille’s betrayal. It was more like a slow-acting poison – as I sipped…drank…guzzled down the Kool-Aid (wierwille’s twisted ideology) – more of my personhood was compromised…this gets into that malignant narcissism stuff that Bolshevik has shared about…the malignant narcissist cult-leader undermines the cognitive and interpersonal functions of starry-eyed followers – basically dehumanizing them.
  12. I have interacted with wierwille many times when he visited our campus in Rome City...and please don't take this the wrong way...but no matter how much you may analyze and dissect someone's false-self versus their former true-self - for me it still doesn't negate the fact that he affected me in a really big way ...mentally...emotionally...on so many levels...I'm talking deeply personal stuff - from direct interaction - person to person! And that's just from my experience as a guy. I can't even imagine what it's like being a woman and dealing with wierwille as a sexual predator...what little I know of psychology I understand that our sexuality is one of the most intimate and possibly more vulnerable aspects of our being - and some predatory creep messing with that can really traumatize a person...and him supposedly being "a man of god" - what a number that must do to someone's head...emotions...faith... ...I mean a sexual predator masquerading as a man of the cloth ...that's some next-level-$hit ! I don't hate the man...There's even things I liked about him and have some funny memories when I interacted with him...and maybe that's why a betrayal is so hurtful, I guess... when someone you admire...respect...love...trust... but then they wind up stabbing you in the back. I know it sounds odd for me to say some of that. but I think about a lot of things...to make sense out of it...to try and understand why...sometimes victims or survivors ask "why me?" or "what motivated that person to do this?" ...sometimes there are no answers...hey, I'm not blowing off all that narcissistic stuff you share - - that's great stuff and it does help me understand more about wierwille...and maybe it's my personal scars talking but I don't think he deserves my pity or sympathy - or that he should be viewed as a non-person...but I do believe I owe him (or at least my memory of him ) some empathy... ...sympathy would be from my perspective... ,,,empathy involves me putting myself in his shoes and trying to understanding why... ...again I say sometimes there are no answers... when dealing with big trauma, crime or senseless violence people deal with it in so many different ways...put up more defenses...disconnect...become activists...develop new safety and security measures...make new laws...for me, some big takeaways from my 12 years of being in a harmful and controlling cult: learning to think for myself in matters of faith, being brave enough to voice my dissent in matters of morality, justice or any conscientious objections, to avoid the seduction of groupthink and to be more attentive to red flags that pop up when charlatans and fanatics cross my path...I'm done with cult-leaders (dead or alive) and harmful and controlling cults.
  13. Don’t think I follow you…if you’re speaking metaphorically I might understand that…maybe I'm reading you wrong but it seems to me the way you put that sort of divorces the person from any responsibility...i think it would be odd to say "a non-person did this to me" or "investigators at the crime scene have said apparently a non-existent broke into the apartment and stabbed the victim nineteen times - then used the victim's own blood to paint a message on the wall - ' No One Did it' ." i think usually most justice systems acknowledge personal culpability - - and some systems reflect the principles of justice and equity in the Ten Commandments and many of the O.T. civil by-laws; and in that regard each person is viewed as a volitional being. wierwille may have been an enigma personality-wise to many folks but - if there is a higher power that resolves inequity and injustices, then he will be held accountable someday for what he did as a person (created in God's image) while existing in our world. I’m no psychologist nor a mental health expert - but I think we're missing something - we're missing what it is to be a human being (created in God's image) and to treat others as human beings (created in God's image) - if we refer to - or treat someone like they are a non-person. That’s dehumanizing in my opinion - it's degrading - we deprive someone of human qualities, personality...dignity. Sure, we can vilify and demonize cult-leaders for the horrendous things they've done - but I don’t write off anyone like there's no hope or help for them - like those cult-leaders did - God forbid you were a Trinitarian or anyone outside TWI - wierwille or LCM would spin some conspiratorial yarn about the god of this world and his five-Star generals and hierarchy of devil spirits and wrong-seed folks …so they often labeled movers and shakers of the world as wrong-seed...or for any other folks they didn't like - they were possessed, tricked by the devil or totally lost in oblivion because they "no longer stand on the Word" like wierwille and LCM use to pontificate about anytime someone crossed them or didn't fit into their screwy self-centered ideology….after reading Rob Bell’s book “Love Wins” - my views on how to handle evildoers is going through some changes…with God there is always hope… I’ve watched several videos of Vaknin speaking about narcissistic personality disorders and he has spoken and wrote a bunch of self-help stuff…that leads me to think that there’s hope for even narcissists. …and in this life we never really know what goes on deep down inside of someone…maybe if wierwille wasn’t held in such high regard by everyone - which afforded him many insulating layers of protection , and with mind-tricks like “the lockbox” , character assassinations and labeling any of his victims as being possessed and trying to attack his “ministry”... Just imagine if all those cloaking "devices" were removed... there was no internet or me-too movement back then! ...imagine if he did get exposed for the megalomaniac predatory narcissistic hypocrite that he was ...who knows what would follow - besides prison time and many civil lawsuits - maybe he would have had access to professional mental health services. One of the justice reforms I hear about in some cities is that they are looking into getting mental health professionals involved to work with police on certain calls . mental health issues are no excuse for bad behavior - but a reason to seek professional medical help. I’m not trying to argue with you - but sometimes this talk seems like we’re being cold and clinical morticians discussing how the “stiff” died - we forget the “stiff” was a person…and something about divorcing the person from responsibility makes me think of a funny thing comedian Jake Johanssen said “ guns don’t kill people…it’s the bullets inside those guns that kill people. Now, give me all your money or I’ll shove these bullets into your head.”
  14. Sorry my mistake. I thought you were talking about cult followers maintaining the “spirit” of the cult leader after he or she has died.
  15. Snake oil from a brood of vipers - well, it is a family business…the sales slogan could be “you never know when you’ll run into a squeaky snake”.
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