I have come to see this spirit of anarchy is true of NPD in general as well as with sociopathy and psychopathy. More on that in a moment. The reason this revelation shocked me was that I had been raised from my earliest moments to see my mother as the embodiment of law and order. Nothing like a controlling bitch of a narcissist mother to have a long list of iron-fisted laws for you to conform to. She was an absolute authoritarian so it isn't surprising it took me decades to see the little anarchist hiding underneath her policing uniform.
According to experts like Hare and Samenow it is quite the norm that the character disordered are all for law and order. With a twist. They want law and order to keep you, me and the other guy in line. But when the character disordered want something there is no law that applies to them. They will defy, undermine and shirk the law that applies to whatever thing they want for themselves. They will even encourage others around them to disdain the offending law so they can gain support for their anarchy just so they can have their way.
This was my mother's tack with my cousin's sons. She was holding a hard, unbending line on her own list of absolute laws, but simultaneously, she was teaching them to disregard and even hate the laws of our country and even some of God's laws in order to shape their minds to justify her behaviors...those behaviors which ran counter to law and morality. None of this was done overtly. It was subtle and sneaky. She is good. She is very good. As good as the snake in the Garden of Eden.
Whether or not you've come to see it yet it is certain that the narcissist you deal with has the spirit of the anarchist. This is closely akin to the spirit of tyranny. Do not let the anarchist and tyrant define morality for you. Question everything. Re examine everything you've been taught to think by the narcissist. It is dangerous, and nonsensical, to allow a person who defies law to be the one to create and enforce any law upon your own life. Narcissists are always telling us how our behaviors are wrong, our morals misinformed, whenever those things run counter to the narcissist's agenda. In the context of dealing with a narcissist...always question authority. Theirs. Recognize that they defy law and morality when it suits them and will demand the same of you in order to force you to let them have their way. Do not let any narcissist define for you what right and wrong is. To allow someone without conscience to shape your conscience is beyond absurd.
What follows below is a blog post first printed 6.10.07. This was just before I started getting much more traffic on this site so it is likely many of you haven't read it. It goes along with my thoughts above about the spirit of anarchy that animates evil people.
If you've done much reading here you've noticed that I often label the behavior of narcissists with the word evil. I've attempted to buttress my justification for using that label in various posts by explaining what evil is. I've talked about how the name "malignant narcissist" is describing someone who acts from malignant, i.e. evil, motives.
But do evil people see themselves as evil? Do they set out to do evil? The short answer is no and no.
It is important to realize that evil people do not wake up wondering what evil deed they're going to perpetrate that day. The reality is that a malignant narcissist has a moral compass turned completely inside out. Let me show you an example by quoting a murdering dictator. I'll reveal his identity later in this post:
"I do not agree with the view that to be moral, the motive of one's actions has to be benefiting others. Morality does not have to be defined in relation to others. … People like me want to … satisfy our hearts to the full, and in doing so we automatically have the most valuable moral codes. Of course there are people and objects in the world, but they are all there only for me. … People like me only have a duty to ourselves; we have no duty to other people."Notice how by pronouncement this malignant narcissist manages to completely turn upside down the real definition of morality which relies on an objective standard. The new definition, his definition, completely exonerates him from any objective moral standard. His new and subjective "moral" code stipulates 1) morality is doing what satisfies yourself. 2) all people and objects only exist to be exploited by yourself. 3) the highest moral calling is fulfilling your own desires. From this list it isn't hard to see how the malignant narcissist is an anarchist at heart. They recognize no law but that of their own making. No outside authority exists. Their highest calling is the whim and desire of their base natures. Which is one reason why a malignant narcissist in power is always a deadly force where the rule of law is the whim of the dictator. Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, Idi Amin, Saddam Hussein, etc.
The "moral" code quoted above is the moral code of every malignant narcissist. This moral code completely justifies any action or motive of the narcissist. They are completely justified, righteous, in their own eyes. I think it is important to realize this fact. When you are dealing with evil you have to understand that the evil one is righteous in their own estimation. Which, of course, translates that you are the one who is evil if you oppose their will.
This upside-down reckoning of moral equations can be disorienting when you are up against it. The upside-down "moralist" is a projection machine. The ugliest aspects of his character will be painted onto you. This is designed to shut you up and force you to conform to his will. He uses it because it works. It works by cleansing him psychologically, and it works by getting you off your moral pins and more apt to concede to his insane world view. If he succeeds in making you feel dirty, you lose the ability to fight him from a moral high ground. For example: if he is a thief and a liar and you are scrupulously honest and fair, first he wipes the dirt of his character onto you by accusing you of being the thief and liar. If he builds enough of a case against you through slander and accusation, you can feel disarmed and may admit defeat. The only way to get along with a malignant narcissist is to always agree with them and always do what they demand. High price for peace.
Just because an evil person lays claim to the moral high ground doesn't make it so. You need to know he feels completely, totally and absolutely justified in whatever he does. What we call evil, he calls righteous and good. I hope by knowing this going in, you will be able to keep from being confused by his gigantic sense of moral certitude. The narcissist doesn't ever question himself. He only questions you and your motives. His actions and motives are pure as the wind-driven snow and beyond questioning. You, on the other hand, are prone to question yourself first. This means you do half the work for the narcissist by putting your own moral understanding in question before you question his. He sees the chink in your moral certitude and drives in the wedge with the deftness borne of much practice.
Always remember: the narcissist is righteous and holy in his own estimation. No, he didn't decide to be evil today. He decided to live by Mao Tse-Tung's moral code. In his world, if you oppose him or fail to show your worshipful regard, YOU are evil.