Narcissism and Transformation

The Narc is embodied with Intense envy, with no genuine feelings of sadness/mourning combined with resentment and anger with revengeful wishes. There is no sadness for the loss of a person or object. A hungry, enraged, empty self, fearful of deprecating and being used up and manipulated. They need to devalue so they don’t experience envy, created by a feeling of inferiority and separation. They normally have good socialising functions with active, consistent work to fulfil ambitions and to attain admiration. The condition is developed by a regressive fusion of early self/object relations with the ego-clinging to the uroboric stage (mother’s womb), resulting in ego inflation and splitting. Narcissism is a blocked development with the ego walled off against unrealistic claims of the archaic grandiose self or against intense hunger for parental external supplies of self-esteem.

Incoherent rage and envy are developed due to empathetic failures with one’s mother. The Grandiose self (GS) is merged with the Idealised Parental imago (IPI), creating the Nuclear self.

This Nuclear self is prone to fragmentation and enfeeblement, where solation drives emerge with great intensity, infantile sexuality and rage. A good empathetic response allows for psychic structure development via transmuting idealisation with the ability to regulate self-esteem and enjoy mental and physical activities. The child is seeking individuation but staying fused forces submission to demands and instincts.

Characteristics of Narcissism in Therapy

  • Lacks penetrability – kept away and warded off – body tightness, tension and self-referential.
  • Rejects interpretation – ignored or accepted by nonexistence in the next session.
  • Can’t tolerate criticism with little sense of identity and capacity for the ego to separate from the self and outer world.
  • Unable to appreciate symbols with a merger between self and ego. Pre-symbolic with the symbol being the other.
  • Low empathy capacity with cruel self-centredness
  • Takes pride in having no needs. Any need for the other could unleash envy that would flood the weak ego structure.
  • Lacks a sense of history or process events that wounded self-esteem. Tells the same story over again with a sense of newness. Poor relationship to inner psychic processes and the inability for the further constellation
  • Distorted masculine /feminine functioning. Self-injured by the ego and denied the positive significance of suffering. Poor relationship to body and spirit. Outer appearance instead of inner beauty

Anything they need will be withheld from them, so I will spoil it or destroy the withholding object with the inflated self to stop feeling hated. Without a working anima, one’s identity will be collectively determined or unstable. A creative task can bring up feelings of inferiority and rage from a lack of self-esteem. With the help of an idealising transference with a therapist, one can regulate dark feelings and regulate and control hate and rage. Idealised projection is behind one’s sense of creativity and purpose with a capacity to assimilate the energy of instinctual life. With the conscious ego gaining more strength and self-control.

The child needs to merge in a body/psychic through Eros union to assimilate idealisation.

With good mirroring, one learns they are understood and allowed to have one’s own thoughts, feelings and experiences. Self-consciousness depends on ego-consciousness, with the ego reflecting the self and the ego mirrored by the self. The mother is the first carrier of the archetypal self-image and central source of personality order, catering for the child’s anxiety and helping consolidate a positive self. All change will be fraught with anxiety, fear, and a sense of identity diffusion if this bond is not established or the mother already has a poor self-image. Exhibitionism expression is contained in the field of sexual and aggression energies where the child’s ego and self have not separated. The merging self should reflect the exhibited self and gain a sense of power and effectiveness with self-esteem in creative and instinctual functioning with full-body awareness and vitality.

The GS (defensive uroboric self, tail-eating dragon) creates a capacity to control others by inhibiting one’s speech and becoming the centre of attention, incessantly doing with endless activity, needing to be ideal, all-knowing and wise. Sadistic energy leaves one in an incestuous bond with the mother with no father to promote tension and will never go beyond the oedipal level, leading to a negative body image with distorted feelings and wanting the other to make them feel good.

The child /client needs their rage to be undifferentiated to avoid rejuvenating early wounds(preverbal). They need an anima that can contain anger and reflect through the medium of the animus and connect their power drive to exhibitionism, with a masculine capacity for internal mirroring, helping feminine sides to emerge.

  • Men – Amina’s main problem
  • Women – Animus main problem (the envy of the opposite self/sex)

Anima is in a positive form with internal mirroring with ego and self in mirror symmetry. The transformation of central components results in the capacity for a union based on consciousness and experience needs.

  1. The black magician– drive for control and determinacy. Readily equated with thought and needs with the power to know. Demands to mirror or feels threatened. Gives way to a positive spirit with the self as the content of the ego (father and son). Embodied awareness of ego becomes possible if compulsive doing becomes reflective.
  2. False bride identification with appearance. Bewitched feminine side. Partner of magician psychic energy back into the ego and not the self. Enemy of the true bride. Fantasy thinking and doing not being for self-esteem. Refuses to show suffering, which would be weak and a threat to power (Lilith, witch). Can Give way to the soul with positive suffering. Energy emerges channelled towards the self and away from excesses in previous ego/self merger. Caring for the soul becomes a meaningful and transparent attitude, with empathy developing.
  3. Ego persona– undifferentiated social compliance and adaptability. The Ego can’t separate from the false persona with omnipotence and perfection according to collective values. When the ego disengages from the persona and becomes a carrier of personal identity means, one can express anger in a related manner.
  4. Shadow – envy and associated rage. Rage cancels history, and envy stops the integration of anima/animus. Instinctual and aggressive energies carry exhibitionism. The Matter is spiritualised, and the spirit materialised vessel in circular movement inhibited by ego/self merger—the ascent of libido in the idealised transference and descent in the mirror transference. Resolved shadow is where the exhibitionist self becomes the shadow.

The Fusion of masculine/feminine elements (black magician and false bride) creates a monstrous native of the hermaphrodite with a premature union of opposites not yet differentiated into opposites. The mother is not all-encompassing but not releasing, with the masculine bound by the maternal “patriarchal Uroboros “.Only until one has a relationship with a spiritual and emotionally mature other can a new sense of a positive hermaphrodite materialise, instead of a fusion between male and female, with a union of opposites between doing and being, a conscious Eros union with others and their unconscious. The narcissist is stuck in the middle realm where there are self-objects with mirror/idealised transferences.

A conjunctio problem of a masculine force dominant and overwhelming the female psyche that the masculine has raped. The lower aspect of the snake, bird or bull fertilises the woman via the wind, thunder or lighting. Separation into the negative mother image, evil dwarfs and witches represent forces of repression attempting to hold her back. They have lost their own connection to self, self-murdered, repressively fused to the unconscious, cut off from the possibility of consciously mirroring the self because the male force was too primitive, too untamed and compulsive. The feminine represses into a plant or stone-like “Echo”. The masculine drive crushes the feminine with the capacity for compulsive doing.

The Uroboros is responsible for the fears of being flooded by exhibitionism energies and envy, with strong defences and unconscious pressure with the ego periodically crushed by inner pressure to perform, unable to exist or more senseless achievements. The narc cannot idealise another or be idealised back, fearful of intimacy and any feeling of need invoking envy, creating anxiety and disorientation. Envy needs to be faced and defeated.

A deep belief that no one would ever care enough for them leads to hatred of the object, and the transference energy leads to envy and intense self-hatred. A mirror of the self found in the Dionysian mirror played a role in the rites of initiation, as one Is exposed to their own face and soul with archetypal needs. The narc can’t separate from the archetypal core with the need to possess themselves and their potency. They must learn to possess the idealised image and allow otherness. Changes and movement from idealisation into mirroring help the narc regain exhibitionism, self and control.

Ascent is spiritual (Idealisation), and descent (mirroring) is body awareness and matter. This deflects attention and energy away from the shadow with issues of envy and rage. Entering space and time involves a loss of archetypal reality through sacrifice, creating a stable consciousness connected to archetypal origins without identifying with them and without being merged through fear of loss of the primal light. The ego can carry both aspects of tension and positively respond to life, defeating the demonic power drive and the dark side of the self. The narc is largely a feminine character split off from the masculine, with sexuality and aggression present only in a Dionysius manner. Once the male force is enduring (feminine raped) and power over the masculine is consolidated, can one open the feminine power? The unconscious is in the body’s outer manifestation of the psyche – the soul is the body’s life. The descent back into matter, where the body is transformed. The ascent of the spirit level via idealisation integrates around Eros in outer relations, with a sense of centre and more inner contact. Learn to integrate the split-off self and embody the somatic consciousness within the body with a lunar vision based on imagination and close-to-body awareness.

Like ISIS collecting Osiris parts, locating the body being dismantled, and the process of discovery gathering up from the dismembered state, Osiris is a dead god, and he must be brought back to life via connection to the somatic unconscious to experience the dismembered state is to suffer. Osiris, bound up with inertia, not wanting to emerge, drowned in water and shut in a coffin, a tree trunk from which he must be rescued. Dead in the underworld, encompassed by the coils of the serpent, in harmony until he attempts to rise.

The serpent becomes ferocious, just as the unconscious wants to stop being conscious.

Awareness of age is the starting process of waking up. Instead of hiding in one`s uroboric world (coiled serpent), we become aware of the forces, and rage turned against ourselves, producing disassociation. With new imagined insight, psychic empathy with the integration of the split-off feminine. The attempt to make the dead alive and resurrect from infantile sexuality with a rebirth of archetypal patterns becoming conscious (i.e. Dionysus and Osiris).

Apollyon – distant and reflective. Dionysus – enmeshed in the moment and the body. The narc Is stuck between personal and archetypal polarities with a structure to defend against depression and suffering. The narc needs to mourn and suffer the result of infantile aggression. Split between psychic (spiritual) and somatic(emotional) intelligence and never completing successfully. Different archetypes rule their halves and suffer some loss of the soul. When we suffer a mirror loss, we retain a sealed self. If the loss is extreme, a schizoid state with the self split off and deflated in energy. The rape and return of Persephone represent the schizoid-like drama, where the true self is reconnected—the fear of joy with clinging to a morbid, depressing fear of psychic rage. The Dionysian immersion in vision and body with a polymorphous perversity merged with the mother, too much for the child to bear. The child’s Dionysian foundation is lost as he moves towards the object world (the depressive position).

The consolidation of opposites means no longer being ruthless as he adapts to Apollonian values and loses part of his soul. To regain the lost soul, one has to accept this death. They can be reborn with the spirit rising from the bottom up as the depths of Dionysus emerge through the body no longer defended with rigid armour, allowing consciousness must learn the value of chaos. The disorder always precedes the disorder with the acceptance of joy and ecstasy. With a fixation on order and things, apollonian brings more obstacles to change from the Dionysian. The narc child believes his rage will kill his mother with a new male consciousness born out of terror. The repressed ego seals the womb, alive and active in density. Active seeing and new ego realm with imagination after Persephone come from the underworld.

Repression – keeping something in the unconscious. Man’s desire for happiness is in conflict with the world with reality, frustrating desires. Fantasy implements a flight from reality, substituting pain. The pleasure and desires are reduced/distorted or even transformed into pain, as in a struggle for existence. Society imposed repression for communal necessity, which causes neurosis of man via social organisations creating neurosis to civilisation. The essence of all being is in the unconscious of repressed desires. Prolonged infancy represses a period of privileged, irresponsibility and freedom from the domination of the reality principle. Creates a dependent attitude towards reality and inculcates a passive need to be loved, colouring all interpersonal relationships. Vulnerability is subsequently exploited to extreme submission to social, authority and the reality principle. omnipotent indulgence in pleasure from the limitation of reality with a paralysed dependency on other people. They came into conflict as the early experiences of freedom and absorption of pleasure succumb to the recognition of reality principle—the conflict between parental authority with the threat of loss of parental love.

The discarded elements of infantile sexuality are judged by adult sexuality as perverse. Well-organised tyrannies and exaggerated polarities in the human body are replayed in the infant. Pleasure in the organism is purely genital and post-pubertal. Infantile sexuality is the pursuit of pleasure obtained through the activity of all human body organs. The individual needs evidence of recovery via transcendental experiences, protecting him from submersion in the mass/crowd. The state places of the gods acting as religious and state slavery. The state holds the truth and moral authority socialised above all criticism. The state also demands enthusiasm, self-sacrifice and love. The split in consciousness represents the rupture between facts, feelings and knowledge. The consciousness of modern man still clings to outward objects and makes them exclusively responsible for their thoughts, feelings, and thinking.


The self appears to be overwhelmed by power drives, and compulsive states encapsulated in the psychotic process. They need to suffer deep-seated abandonment fears rather than find material or spiritual ways to avoid them. The ego’s will is too weak to enter space-time functioning, which will embed madness instead of fleeing from it. They experience surrender as a descent into emptiness or madness. Examples of borderline behaviour and experiences

  1. Intolerance of frustration
  2. Aggressive impulses
  3. Pathological splitting
  4. Omnipotence perfection
  5. Identity distortion
  6. Diffuse anxiety

Extreme infantile dependence on objects with pregenital strivings with depression and transient psychotic breakdowns. Omnipotence alternates with inferiority with a failure in the rites of passage. Failure to evolve from the depressive position can result in a schizoid stage.

Countertransference crosses over the border into previously inactive chaotic regions and the archetypal fragments, activating aspects of the conjunctio (merging of opposites). The eye of the imaginal sight looks at the split-off unconscious and examines the emotional truth. This is very dangerous, looking at the dark shadow of hatred and rage fused with requirements if one is blind to one’s own destructive qualities and those of others. Object constancy is recovered once imaginal sight is transformed with rational consciousness.

They may dispense energy in a cowardly way to avoid various feelings of being hated or hating, which may create further self-disgust and despair with the terror that the good object no longer exists. This self does not learn from this experience, with the soul living on the brink of nothingness and constant fog of despair—blatant forms of denial and splitting from inner affective states that are not experienced. The child will give up the connection to the numinous of positive feelings and keep parental symbiosis and connection. These thoughts and feelings are deemed and perceived as ego-syntonic, as this is all the child can experience. Separation is about redeeming the numinous and bringing it back to time and space in an archetypal form and then counterattacking the unconscious. The borderline may create a fusion of distance merging with a person or group with no sense of individual identity. Their feelings and thoughts are determined by the other, who ends up participating in a guessing g game.

The answer is the conjunctio and union of opposites with fusion and distance in perfect harmony.

A Loss or sensed absence of the conjunctio leads to fear of loss of the good object and the union experience. Despair is the soul`s calling card into the objective realm, void, and chaos. This may be experienced as a vampire-like energy field with a satanic false love being asked to give up a falseness or die, with no image in the mirror, no self-reflection, the psyche without mirrors.

The perfect shadow side of the narc (The vampire) is killed by the sun’s rays consciousness. A person fused with a dark force may feel disoriented and confused, where there are no thoughts to escape despair, with the void destroying any imagination. There is no internal representation of the positive self, with the numinous in limbo with outer reality and inner work. The self of the borderline lies in the nigredo, a death-like state, with strange perversions, complying with others and environmental demands with further attempts to contact other people.

Narcissist Vs Borderline

 In The Narc, the parental idealisation failure leads to a life of unlived ambitions, with an Inner/outer barrier against the attack of envy with an inner structure of ideals. The intense envy gives up the consciousness for hope and positive feelings, with an assured route to abandonment by driving everyone away. The mother plays a pivotal role in the archetypal process, to help individuate or undermine it, dominated by the interplay between fusion and distance. One can merge with a group/person to some extent but lose any sense of individuality in the process. The conjunctio (union) merges the opposites, bringing fusion and distancing in harmony. The Narc uses fusion to cathect with others, denying the loss of the object, where any separation is dealt with persecutory affects and behaviours. The nigredo, blackening and depression follow the conjunctio. Despair may set in with the loss, sense, or absence of the conjunctio (the soul`s calling card), with one experiencing the void and a sense of chaos. The person may become disorientated and confused with the loss of one’s false identity.

The borderline (BPD) was raised in an enmeshed environment, with clinging and dependency developing withdrawal of love and concern for any attempts at separation. The BPD might idolise someone and yet soon feel extreme hatred and scorn for that person when feelings of inadequacy manifest. The heightened sensitivity of the BPD may force the other to split or withdraw with the threat of being exposed as fraudulent. The BPD will induce intense insecurity in the other, where Idealisations are fused with rage, believing if you fall from the ideal, you do not care enough or have enough self-esteem to contain them. Lies and denial take the place of perception, combined with idealisation, to maintain ideal images of parents. Archetypal energies of exhibitionism are fused with the ego, where toxic shame takes over when one begins to seek individuality. When the child was real, they were met with disinterest and no response with isolation and punishment from their parent. True feelings are ignored and denied, with the rape of the self for survival, and splitting of the exhibitionist longings, as this would result in rejection.

Any disclosure of the self will lead to psychic death

The omnipotence of the good mother is lost at a stage of mourning and the forming of the conjunctio, the process of joining and separation of opposites with a continued battle of trials. The oedipal ego approaches the culmination of its sacrifice of fusion with the numinous energy of union. The libido is now cast in the incest taboo with the development of the inner structure and differential relationships to feminine qualities of the psyche—competent development with time/space matrix and aspect of the divine drama via dissolve and coagulate. An intense negative mother leads to a split between body and psyche, where anxieties lived in the body remain hidden if the splitting continues. Any change in body structure and image is threatened by the mother leading to a sense of ugliness filled with repulsive desires hidden under the covers., creating strong body armouring. The primary form of healing is a therapist/client experiencing together, maintaining a self and related other incongruence and safe space.

Where the negative eye goddess has been tamed, and the feeling man has overcome death, a self with male and female polarities in contact with the subtle body is established

The nigredo results from elements of a couple’s incestuous perversion where envy becomes dominant as early losses emerge and unions can reverse the process again. The soul goes up to the transferring power of the collective unconscious, wrestling away any lingering inflations caused by fusion, with the soul returning and reviving the structure’s energy with the interactive field being stable, leading to the Positive Rebis (healthy hermaphrodite). The undeveloped consciousness containing contradictory sexual aspects and mutually exclusive states of mind are fused in the negative Rebis, where gender identity becomes confused.

New energy fields extend from the physical body with a change in the quality of space between the threshold of awareness of archetypal processes. When the conjunctio is active, experiences will feel like being pulled toward fusion and separation. The realm between them contains a sense of unity.

Schwartz-Salant, N., 1982. Narcissism And Character Transformation. Toronto: Inner City Books.
Schwartz-Salant, N., 1998. The Mystery Of Human Relationship. London: Routledge.