I woke in the middle of the night last week with the idea of "infantile rage." I consulted Dr. Wolf, below, for advice. Amazingly he was right there on the Internet as soon as I thought up the question. It's often like that. There are any number of approaches to our problems if only we would give up our cliched certainties in favor of looking for informed opinion. The good doctor's informed opinion was only useful to me in parts, thus parts below, with not much in the way of apologies from me for my incisive surgery on his work. Since I've hacked away at his work one might feel rightly that he deserves unedited viewing. For God's sake, Jim, he's a doctor! not a magician! So I cut to the bones to get to the essence as I view it, that the Muslim world is in a state of infantile rage; and I use the authority of the doctor below to give legitimate foundation to my argument.
It might be obvious but I am not a parent. I cannot write with any authority at all of children. I can, however, write of infantile rage from some experience in the world. And you can grasp it easily. You needn't be a doctor to see the rage in the Islamic world, and you needn't even be half-bright to recognize it as a tantrum.
There are very few mature adults in the Islamic culture. Islam is an infantile culture. Those Westerners who support its demands are those same whom Lenin in his highest wit refers to as the "Infantile Left." (Attend to those who know.) Of the emotionally and socially and morally retarded geriatric ulema there need be little written here or anywhere else. They are the classic example of "educated fools," and if you should doubt, then AskTheImam. Our concern must be with the remaining two groups of Muslims and their philobarbarist cheerleaders in the West, our darling Leftists.
Cartoon Rage? The ulema, absorbed in bitter discussion of the evils of djinns dancing on the heads of pins, could hardly manage to detach themselves from their nargilas long enough to issue some smoking death fatwas. No, no, the problem of all is not the good doctors of Islamic law but the enraged umma lead by an enraged intelligentsia this side of senility, i.e. the jihad-bent takfiris.
Put it this way: The Stalinists of the ulema face the Maos and his sea of little Red Guards. Stalin's not pure enough? Then call in Mao who'll whip up a rage of frenzied murder to make things perfect for the few who might survive to scrounge around for roots and berries in the aftermath. Takfiris, to whom no one is Islamic enough but themselves. Why do Leftist love these people? Because the takfiris are the Communists of our day. The words change but the religion is the same. The dogma of the West Left is: "I hate my parents and I don't wanna grow up." Hey, suits me too but I don't kill anyone over it. then again, I'm a really boring guy. I don't have thousands of friends all over the world doing important stuff like fighting for freedom and stuff. Lucky for you, friend.
Enough already of this introduction. I'll see you again at the bottom of the doctor's presentation, beaten with a rubber truncation as it is.
Ernest S. Wolf, MD., “Group Helplessness and Rage,” Self Psychology Bulletin Board. Chicago, IL.
This paper originally was delivered at the International Self-Psychology Symposium in Dreieich, Germany, May, 2001. It is published here for the first time.
Talking about rageful behavior [Heinz Kohut] observed that underlying the rage one often finds an uncompromising insistence on the perfection of the idealized other. The infant experiences itself still in a state of [feeling] limitlessness [of] power and knowledge, a state that we as outsiders deprecatingly call the child’s grandiosity…. [W]hat looks like an adult …really is a very shakily put together oversensitive and shame-prone narcissist. The fanaticism of the need for revenge and the unending compulsion of having to square the account after an offense are therefore not the attributes of an aggressivity that is integrated with the mature purposes of the ego - on the contrary, such bedevilment indicates that the aggression was mobilized in the service of an archaic grandiose self and that it is deployed within the framework of an archaic perception of reality. The shame-prone individual who is ready to experience setbacks as narcissistic injuries and to respond to them with insatiable rage does not recognize his opponent as a center of independent initiative with whom he happens to be at cross-purposes. Aggression, when employed in the pursuit of maturely experienced causes, are not limitless. However vigorously this aggression is mobilized, is aim is limited and definite: the defeat of the enemy who blocks the way to a cherished goal. As soon as the aim is reached, the rage is gone.
The narcissistically injured on the other hand, cannot rest until he has blotted out a vaguely experienced offender who dared to oppose him, to disagree with him, or to outshine him. ..It can never find rest because it can never wipe out the evidence that has contradicted its conviction it is unique and perfect. This archaic rage goes on and on and on. Furthermore, the enemy who calls forth the archaic rage of the narcissistically vulnerable is seen by him not as an autonomous source of impulsions, but as a flaw in a narcissistically perceived reality. The enemy is experienced as a recalcitrant part of an expanded self over which the narcissistically vulnerable person had expected to exercise full control. The mere fact, in other words, that the other person is independent or different is experienced as offensive by those with intense narcissistic needs.
Thus, not being in full control over self and over a narcissistically experienced world gives the afflicted individual an experience of utter powerlessness. Such powerlessness and the sense of helplessness via-a-vis the world are unbearably traumatic experiences that must be ended by any means whatsoever. The offending other must be wiped out.
…The need for revenge, for righting a wrong, for undoing a hurt by whatever means, and a deeply anchored, unrelenting compulsion in the pursuit of all these aims, which gives no rest to those who have suffered a narcissistic injury -these are the characteristic features of narcissistic rage in all its forms and which set it apart from other kinds of aggression.
Every individual self needs to possess and exercise a certain amount of power to guarantee the maintenance of its cohesion and boundaries, even its continuation as a separate and distinct self. The loss of power which usually is associated with being subjected to some sort of feeling helpless is for most human beings an unbearable experience. It evokes an overwhelming desire to wipe out the offending source of the threatened helplessness. This narcissistic rage is an unlimited deadly destructive rage that is not appeased even by the defeat and disappearance of the evoking threat. In contrast to angry hostility caused by frustration of a self’s ordinary aims, a hostility that diminishes as the frustration diminishes and as the desired aims finally are achieved, narcissistic rage goes on and on and on with hardly a let up in its destructiveness even when no further threat to the self remains.
The political arena allows many individuals to act out narcissistic rage as members of a group. We can understand this better when we remember that individuals who experience themselves as powerless often identify with groups by joining them. Groups that appear to have some power become seductively attractive to the narcissistic individual who is trying to escape the feeling of powerlessness. They experience the group power as their own power and any threat to the group power is experienced as an unbearable threat to their own self which then evokes unlimited rage in defense of self. Common are the hatreds that groups carry for other groups whom, rightly or wrongly, they perceive as threats to their very existence. They kill and destroy without mercy while at the same time enjoying a feeling of righteous triumph over a threatening enemy….
What can be done? Our psychological reasoning would lead us to believe that in order to reduce the rage one must try to reduce the experience of helplessness and substitute gradually an experience of having some power. The first step would seem to be an effort to really listen to each other and try to understand the other’s experience. To really feel one is being seen, being listened to most often leads to feeling understood. The experience of being understood is a self-empowering experience. We know that from working with individuals who, when they feel understood in treatment, they immediately grow stronger.
© 2001 Ernest S. Wolf and 3b.
Now I can hear you from here saying "Dag, you rotten bastard, why didn't you cut out the last bit to keep this poor doctor from looking like that on your blog post?" I feel your pain.
There is too much bullshit raked around by pseudo-sophisticates who don't have any sense of anything but the imitation of conformity they feel they must practice to have a normal life in a hectic world of Modernity. OK, but there are some defining acts in a person's life that can't be walked away from without regard. You, bud, are stuck with it if what you do leads to others being murdered. Allowing this Muslim tantrum to continue and spread and deepen is to cause the murder of those who will not, perhaps at this time cannot, control themselves, and who must be constrained by force against their collective will. That's less than likely for most of us in person. But for any thinking caring and sharing person the least one can do is shout and demand a halt to this infantile rage. Instead we get sympathy-sisters weeping crocodile tears for every dead jihadi who blows up a school full of children or a bus or a diner or you insert it here. If you aren't part of the solution, you are the problem.
Yes, you must conform to the norms of our lives and societies; and part of that is standing up against idiots and cynics and killers. Not many of you will have the courage to do so, but those few among our multitude of readers who do are welcome to join us in our very pubic protests against the expressed infantile rage and the coterminous dhimmitude of our cowed intelligentsia. Doctors blowing themselves up in aeroports. Give me a break. Or I'll kill ten innocent bystanders to teach you a lesson.