Narcissism, alcoholism, and malice

Narcissism is an interesting condition because it does not appear to have a large genetic component, if any, and it can be understood as a cognitive strategy.

Narcissism often co-occurs with alcoholism or is the result of alcohol addiction.

I think it is probably a mistake to say that narcissism leads to alcoholism because alcoholism so often begins in the late teens and early twenties when personality and cognitive strategies are not well developed.

We generally study language and cognitive development by studying growing children, but we can also gain valuable insights into language and cognition by studying how they decline in alcoholism and other degenerative conditions later in life.

My sense is that in alcoholics, narcissism can be understood as an overall cognitive strategy that works because it is a simple and relatively easy way to organize general cognition.

With fewer things to consider, the narcissist is better able to function while drunk or while suffering the neurotoxic effects of years of alcohol abuse.

Why are narcissists and alcoholics so often malicious?

I think the reason is much the same as the argument above: malice is a simple, self-centered response to poorly understood or completely misunderstood social stimuli.

Malice is a side-effect of the simplicity of the narcissist’s overall cognitive strategy which has placed enormous emotional weight on an inflated sense of self.

In terms of FIML theory, narcissism is a dominant network of semiotics centered around self-interest and self-aggrandizement. (Narcissism as a cognitive strategy)

I think FIML practice would be very difficult, maybe impossible, for mid-stage and beyond alcoholics due to reduced capacity for the meta-cognition needed for FIML.

A non-alcoholic narcissist or an alcoholic in the earlier stages of the disease would, in my opinion, benefit greatly from FIML practice if conditions are good.

Rather than being a mysterious force directing personality, I believe narcissism is cognitive strategy. As such it is based on self-centered heuristics that are founded on semiotic networks that can be perceived through FIML practice.

I also believe that these networks almost certainly will be identified by brain scans or other instruments within the next few decades.

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