By Karen Barna
Thinking through this notion of “ego-ideal.” Upon waking and contemplating in bed this morning the term and how it applies to individuals who manipulate, exploit, and control others I’ve discovered that this term can apply to a broad number of different individuals including those, who on a lesser scale than Hitler, re-enforce their ego status by “playing” to the one’s they come in contact with in their personal environments. For example, the wealthy individual who uses money, status, and connections to influence shallow minded peoples’ opinions of them control weaker egos or who dupe them into believing a fallacy. Wealth and money can be a big factor in fostering a collection of drone like minds as our young people are fascinated with the wealthy of the famous and their fast paced lifestyle. And in fact, some variants of this form of psychopathy may even create and implement the use of technology to try and make ‘other’ less intelligent, out of a delusional fear, so the individuals may become incapable of thinking for themselves. I’m referring to the abuses of technology with regard to electro-magnetic frequency in psychiatry and mental health patients. (see Controversial Psychosurgery). Thriving and striving toward an ego-ideal is of course a healthy element to human development when it remains within the parameters of fair and humane play, staying within the perimeters of healthy development. All individuals contain a narcissistic elements, both masochistic and sadistic, and this narcissism can help to protect the individual from the death instinct and personal harm. For example, if an individual displays a form of healthy attachment went,
“According to Freud, mourning occurs when an object that one had loved for its intrinsic qualities as separate and distinct from oneself is lost. The pleasures that derives from this form of love depends on a capacity to tolerate the potentially painful awareness that “I” and “you” have edges, and that inscribed within the space of this interval are the possibilities of misunderstanding, disappointment, even betrayal. According to Freud, the loss of an object loved in this manner typically results in mourning.”
In contrast to,
“In the cases of melancholy, the pattern by which loss is worked through is different because the loved object fulfilled a rather different function in the psychological life of the bereaved. A melancholic response to loss, the symptomology of which is a severe, often suicidal depression, ensues when the object was loved not as separate and distinct from oneself, but rather as a mirror of one’s own sense of self and power. The predisposition to love in this manner obtains when the self lacks sufficient strength and cohesion to tolerate, much less comprehend, the reality of separateness (this is the situation of both the primary narcissist, the infant, and the secondary narcissist, the adult melancholic).”
It is normal to maintain an appropriate level of sadism. Everyone can recall at one time or another relishing in the enjoyment of an enemy’s or opponent’s defeat. However, levels of sadism which reach feverish pitches can become abusive, punitive, and even cruel forms of punishment, the kinds of punishments which cross the boundaries of normal game play and cross over to unhealthy modes of behavior. We have observed this in cases of children with attachment disorders (see Neglect In Romanian Orphanages). We also know the failure to feed an infant within the first few days of life can have disastrous consequences. Fair and equal economically sufficient wealth is not something that has been equally distributed nor is it ever likely to be equally distributed.
In current events surrounding the manipulation of money, wealth, and status we can reference the Bernie Maddoff case. (see Bernie Madoff Case). Individuals who bathe in the luxuries of wealth and status can re-enforces the notion in a person’s belief about themselves, that the “I” is better than the “rest of you” because I can simulate that which society holds as a high bench-mark standard in a form of elitism. Many people enjoy bathing in the wealth of others, albeit if only for a brief time, because it provides an escape from a life less glamorous and provides comforts, perks, and almost universal acceptance. It seems the world speaks the language of money.
The method of operation which I have come to recognize as trying to maintain omnipotent control over ‘other’ can be seen in the giving of gifts in order to try and ‘win’ over a person. An individual who possess the wealth, distributes to his or her ‘others.’ What is obtain is a wealth of friends; in short, Acceptance. If the ‘other’ egos lack the sufficient strength to stand in the face of adversity and maintain cohesion when confronted with reality, which can be the case with the very young and some children in adolescence and the mentally ill, they may find themselves alone and unable to maintain the standard or bench-mark bestowed without their shadow. When the ‘gift giver’ is lost, the individual may fall in to a depressive like state. This “depressive like state” is the state hoped for when parents try and form an ego that contains a conscience state of awareness. This “forming of conscience” was discussed in The Psychic Life of Power; Theories in Subjugation by Judith Butler.
In the beginning of our life, this narcissistic dependency makes it likely that the child will not leave the side of the “gift giver” until they have the adequate social tools and ego to find ways to establish independence of there own. Young adults leaving college usually fall into this healthy level of established independence. Maintaining a well rounded ego helps in establishing one’s success and included in this is the resilience to weather storms. This is particularly true of the famous movie stars and musicians who ultimately, at the pinnacle of their success get caught up in the applause and glamour, finally lose their fame and fall into addiction if they haven‘t already achieved it. They get caught-up in their own egocentricity in the mirroring effect of omnipotence just like the Federal Republic of Germany got caught up in Hitler’s re-enforcing ego-ideal during World War II.
At other times individuals will find themselves in abusive master-slave relationships known as employment contracts or employment at will contracts. The slave-master relationship is just that, you are the slave that comes under the lordship of a bondsman. How does one tolerate an abusive superior? Again, I’d like to re-iterate the importance of electro-magnetic punishment/torture in helping to maintain “control” over ‘other’ as harmful, thwarting, and incapacitating. In short, cruel and inhumane. These methods actually work to insure that a person stays by the side of the one, who suffering a delusional state, fear the loss of ‘object.’
SUBNOTE: Suicide imposed upon the ‘self’ as a result of abusive punishment either from the ‘self’ or ‘other’ needs to be distinguished here. Alcoholics will sometimes commit suicide because they are at a lost for controlling their disease. They seek relief from an addiction from which they want to escape but cannot stop. The clinical term for this state is called anaclisis, which is the clinical term for dependency on another, or a withering away of the ego. It is a clinical term that says the choice of an object of libidinal attachment on the basis of a resemblance to early childhood protective and parental figures. Rejection in the home environment by one or both parents during any stage of childhood can create its mark and cause this ’withering’ effect or unhealthy attachment to a parental figure. We have seen what abuses in leadership and parenting styles can do. We witness it in cases of addiction and anorexia. It is the reason clinical psychologists will encourage religion or a spiritual path to promote healing.
Suicide committed by individuals who are being physically abused is another form to consider when the person cannot see any other means of escape from a dysfunctional situation. I would like to comment about the use of electro-magnetic punishments as an example of one of these types of abuses. If the military has carried out experimentation at any one time, with regard to this technology, it is highly likely they witnessed rates of suicidal deaths.