Narcissistic Personality Disorder - An Introduction

Written by Sam Vaknin

NARCISSISM (n. sing.)

A pattern of traits and behaviours which signify infatuation and obsession with one's self torepparttar exclusion of all others andrepparttar 126333 egotistic and ruthless pursuit of one's gratification, dominance and ambition.

Narcissism is named afterrepparttar 126334 ancient Greek myth of Narcissus who was a handsome Greek youth who rejectedrepparttar 126335 desperate advances ofrepparttar 126336 nymph Echo.

In punishment of his cruelty, he was doomed to fall in love with his own reflection in a pool of water.

Unable to consummate his love, he pined away and changed intorepparttar 126337 flower that bears his name to this very day.

WHAT IS NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder)?

The Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) has been recognized as a seperate mental health disorder inrepparttar 126338 third edition ofrepparttar 126339 Diagnostic and Statistics Manual (DSM) in 1980. Its diagnostic criteria and their interpretation have undergone a major revision inrepparttar 126340 DSM III-R (1987) and were substantially revamped inrepparttar 126341 DSM IV in 1994. The European ICD-10 basically contains identical language.

An all-pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behaviour), need for admiration or adulation and lack of empathy, usually beginning by early adulthood and present in various contexts. Five (or more) ofrepparttar 126342 following criteria must be met:

(1) Feels grandiose and self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents torepparttar 126343 point of lying, demands to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)

(2) Is obsessed with fantasies of unlimited success, fame, fearsome power or omnipotence, unequalled brilliance (the cerebral narcissist), bodily beauty or sexual performance (the somatic narcissist), or ideal, everlasting, all-conquering love or passion

(3) Firmaly convinced that he or she is unique and, being special, can only be understood by, should only be treated by, or associate with, other special or unique, or high-status people (or institutions)

(4) Requires excessive admiration, adulation, attention and affirmation - or, failing that, wishes to be feared and to be notorious (narcissistic supply).

(5) Feels entitled. Expects unreasonable or special and favourable priority treatment. Demands automatic and full compliance with his or her expectations

(6) Is "interpersonally exploitative", i.e., uses others to achieve his or her own ends

(7) Devoid of empathy. Is unable or unwilling to identify with or acknowledgerepparttar 126344 feelings and needs of others

(8) Constantly envious of others or believes that they feelrepparttar 126345 same about him or her

(9) Arrogant, haughty behaviours or attitudes coupled with rage when frustrated, contradicted, or confronted.

The Interrupted Self

Written by Sam Vaknin

Also read this - Psychophysics

The fundament of our mind isrepparttar mental map we create of our body ("Body Image", or "Body Map"). It is a detailed, psychic, rendition of our corporeal self, based on sensa (sensory input) and above all on proprioception and other kinaesthetic senses. It incorporates representations of other objects and results, at a higher level, in a "World Map" or "World Image". This World Map often does not react to actual changes inrepparttar 126332 body itself (such as amputation -repparttar 126333 "phantom" phenomenon). It is also exclusionary of facts that contradictrepparttar 126334 paradigm atrepparttar 126335 basis ofrepparttar 126336 World Map.

This detailed and ever-changing (dynamic) map constitutesrepparttar 126337 set of outer constraints and threshold conditions forrepparttar 126338 brain's operations. The triple processes of interaction (endogenous and exogenous), integration (assimilation) and accommodation (see here "Psychophysics") - reconcilerepparttar 126339 brain's "programmes" (sets of instructions) to these constraints and conditions. In other words, these are processes of solving dynamic, though always partial, equations. The set of allrepparttar 126340 solutions to all these equations constitutesrepparttar 126341 "Personal Narrative", or "Personality". Thus, "organic" and "mental" disorders (a dubious distinction at best) have many characteristics in common (confabulation, antisocial behaviour, emotional absence or flatness, indifference, psychotic episodes and so on).

The brain's "Functional Set" is hierarchical and consists of feedback loops. It aspires to equilibrium and homeostasis. The most basic level is mechanical - hardware (neurones, glia, etc.) and operating system software. This software consists of a group of sensory-motor applications. It is separated fromrepparttar 126342 next level by exegetic instructions (the feedback loops and their interpretation). This isrepparttar 126343 cerebral equivalent of a compiler. Each level of instructions is separated fromrepparttar 126344 next (and connected to it meaningfully and operationally) by such a compiler.

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