Sunday, October 7, 2007

I hope you don't dream of psychopaths

A few months ago a friend was visting for a couple of weeks. On the second night before going to bed she said to me: "I hope you don’t dream of psychopaths"! It was obvious that she was making reference to the books that I was reading on the subject: Without Conscience, The sociopath next door, In sheep’s clothing and Political Ponerology to mention but a few.

For her the thought of reading on such a subject seemed to be one coupled with fear. Admittedly it is one of the darker side of the reality that we encounter, but fear has not been the affect of reading about the subject. This might be surprising to many people, but think of it this way: Does a tribe’s man living in the jungle fear the jungle? No, and why not? Because he knows about the jungle. It is his home. He knows what plants and animals are dangerous and which ones are not, how to look out for them and how to behave in case of encountering them. The knowledge of the jungle, derived from keen observation and experience by himself and his tribe over generations means that his perceptive faculties are alert to what he sees, hears, smells and senses, so that no detail passes unnoticed. Because of his awareness and understanding of the jungle and it’s possible dangers, he can be relaxed and comfortable, but always ready to act on new observations as they appear. His relaxedness is not based on ignorance, but on knowledge.

Now what would happen if you as an outsider suddenly landed in just such a jungle? Well, fear would be a very likely response. If it so happened that you would be there for any length of time , the best way of survival would be to learn as much as possible about the jungle and preferably by people who know the jungle inside out like the tribesman mentioned before. Ignoring the dangers of the jungle or denying that one is in the jungle would be the surest way of finding a quick end to life.

Now what does that have to do with reading about psychopaths, you might ask? Well, as a matter of fact everything. We happen to live in just such a jungle, while constantly denying it or by pretending that no dangers exist. We have been brought up to think that everybody has the common good of his fellow man at heart. That is just not the case as these many books attests to.

Psychopaths ARE the deadly predators of the jungle called planet Earth and ascribing normal human qualities to them is the big flaw in our psychological understanding. It is essential to understand that around 4% of the population are psychopaths and that probably another 15-20% have similar mental deficiencies as the psychopaths due to an upbringing by psychopathic parents and/or the influence of a ponerized society that cherish the values of the psychopaths. Properly understanding this phenomenon in all its detail is essential for turning the tide of the psychopathic takeover of society and will make the difference as to whether you will end up as somebody’s lunch or not.

The friend visiting expressed interest in the subject and I lent her the book The Sociopath next door by Martha Stout. After reading just 50 pages in 2 weeks of holiday, she and her boyfriend, who had joined her, asked if they could borrow the book and take it with them. Considering the amount read so far I declined and suggested to them to just buy it from Amazon, which doesn’t cost a lot of money and also knowing that money for them couldn't be the issue. They talked about it a bit, wrote all the titles down, expressed amazement how it explained so many things and then decided to see if they couldn’t get the books at the public library. In the next moment my friend told me that she would have to have another 2 days of holidays when she got back as the new Harry Potter was then due to arrive from Amazon. The following saying came to mind: "You can take a horse to the water but you can't make it drink".

The answer to my friend's initial question at the start of her vacation "I hope you don’t dream of psychopaths" was "No, I never dream of psychopaths but I am aware of their existence and it is very real."

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