Author Topic: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre  (Read 19824 times)

dondrup

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 816
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2012, 04:53:03 PM »
It is very unfortunate to be mentally ill.  These people require a lot of medical care and attention.  It is not as simple as giving them counseling or giving them Dharma advice.  Due to their heavy negative karma they do not have the clear mind to listen to Dharma.

We simply cannot know how these people would think or behave.  Outwardly they may appear normal.  But their behaviors are volatile and unpredictable and at times could be violent and dangerous!  They will refuse to take their medications to control the chemical imbalance in their brain or their illness because they think they are alright without them! If you think they are crazy, then you are very wrong.  The mentally sick will tell you that you are crazy not them!

Is the sociopath really that scary? For most of us, yes it is.  I have some experience with these sociopaths.  My observation is that Dharma centres are not equipped with the expertise to handle these people. Sociopaths must be referred to the relevant specialists or authorities who have the skills and knowhow to deal with them.  Generally it is not advisable to have sociopaths in Dharma centres as it will pose danger to other ‘normal’ practitioners.
 
Frankly speaking we are no different than the sociopaths as we are all mentally sick too.  It is just the difference in the level of mental illness that we have.  Fortunately, we still have the mental capacity to listen to and practise Dharma.  For that reason we should be grateful and not let this freedom or endowment be wasted.  Practise Dharma while we still can!




RedLantern

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 758
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2012, 09:24:51 AM »
Sociopaths do deserve empathy.All human being deserve empathy and compassion no matter what they hve done.This is basic Buddhist teaching.They can be professionals,entrepeneurs,politicians,your spouse and your own family members.According to research up to four percent off the general population are sociopaths and most of them go undetected.Who are these people?why are they the way they are?They could be from any kind of family.It is partly genetic and partly mystery.Dharma center is like a hospital that attracts all kind of people.They are just like anyone else,so we have to be more aware of suspicious characters.

Klein

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 502
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #17 on: May 06, 2012, 11:24:20 AM »
There are sociopaths everywhere we go, not just in dharma centres. All of us need help as long as we're not Buddhas. So let's not make it sound like those who are not in dharma centres are mentally "well".  It's interesting to read the traits of sociopaths.

"Glibness/superficial charm
Manipulative and conning
Grandiose sense of self
Pathological lying
Lack of remorse, shame or guilt
Shallow emotions
Incapacity for love
Need for stimulation
Callousness/lack of empathy
Poor behavioral controls/impulsive nature
Early behavior problems/juvenile delinquency
Irresponsibility/unreliability
Promiscuous sexual behavior/infidelity
Lack of realistic life plan/parasitic lifestyle
Criminal or entrepreneurial versatility
Contemptuous of those who seek to understand them
Does not perceive that anything is wrong with them
Authoritarian
Secretive
Paranoid
Only rarely in difficulty with the law, but seeks out situations where their tyrannical behavior will be tolerated, condoned, or admired
Conventional appearance
Goal of enslavement of their victim(s)
Exercises despotic control over every aspect of the victim's life
Has an emotional need to justify their crimes and therefore needs their victim's affirmation (respect, gratitude and love)
Ultimate goal is the creation of a willing victim
Incapable of real human attachment to another
Unable to feel remorse or guilt
Narcissism, grandiosity (self-importance not based on achievements)
May state readily that their goal is to rule the world"

To a certain degree, we all have many of these traits. So my conclusion is we are all different levels of sociopaths; some more severe than others. Dharma is the only way to heal us.

sonamdhargey

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 406
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #18 on: May 06, 2012, 02:50:13 PM »

To a certain degree, we all have many of these traits. So my conclusion is we are all different levels of sociopaths; some more severe than others. Dharma is the only way to heal us.

Agreed. We always think we are perfect ourself and judged others to be sociopaths. We do it so often that we forgot we are practicing Dharma. We label certain people that we don't like in our Dharma centres as sociopath and we conveniently get everyone in the Dharma centre to agree with us that that person we prejudged as sociopath and everyone treats that person like an outcast. We should practice humility and compassion, patience, respect and humane to help them in their problems rather than using harsh words and be hard on them.

ratanasutra

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 345
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2012, 05:37:11 PM »
Obviously there are sociopaths everywhere, not only in Dharma centre but because our perception and expectation for Dharma centre that should be the place for only spiritual people who are the practitioner and doing well in their practice..

As been mentioned by many people that Dharma centre is like a mental hospital so that most of mentally ill people are attract to because they know that in this place they will be help to heal or at least give them a peace of mind.

But since we are in Dharma centre and we have learn and practice more so we should not response in non dharmic way, we should act in such the way that can inspire them and turn them around, if that doesn't work then at least we have to stop them to continue that such actions which create more negative karma for them.

Reena Searl

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 70
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #20 on: May 11, 2012, 07:04:26 PM »
Dharma is one of the best way to heal our PROBLEMS....
People in dharma do not means are perfectly nice or good person. We are in samsara, people come to dharma centre to seek peace, heal, wealth etc with different motivation. We are not in the position to judge people in the dharma centre, what ratanasutra said is true enough

"Obviously there are sociopaths everywhere, not only in Dharma centre but because our perception and expectation for Dharma centre that should be the place for only spiritual people who are the practitioner and doing well in their practice.."


rossoneri

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 386
    • Email
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #21 on: May 12, 2012, 03:50:01 AM »
All of us is carrying some sort of problem due to our karma from the past and that's the reason why we are here in samsara still. In my opinion we should not judge nor discriminate certain group of people because of their personal incapability if i may position it that way. Buddha teaches all of us to practice compassion, patience, humble and so on, if we claim ourselves a Buddhist, the more we should look out for each other. Don't just stand still and hope someone else is going to help this particular 'unwell' person.  That's why we have 84,000 methods from the Buddha and in a way we all are having some kind of sickness after all, we must transform and understand Dharma to be better person.
 

Benny

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 147
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #22 on: May 13, 2012, 04:40:20 PM »
I really agree with the analogy that a dharma centre or all religious centre is like a mental hospital. Whilst most go there to seek " treatment " and there are those who go there for a myriad of reason and agendas.

What is worrisome is that some of these are sociopaths who have either been in there for so long and had "not been cured " or transformed that they themselves think of or take on the ROLE of the " Nurse or even the Doctor " can you imagine yourself being treated by a fellow patient ?! This is nothing new , we see it all the time in mental institutions all over the world that some mental patients actually behave that way. Yes we even laugh at such scenes in comedies or horror movies !

In reality , this I no laughing matter . Nor should it be used as an EXCUSE when when other "patients" or even "visitors" get used, abused or hurt by these sociopaths. Can you accept an excuse as LAME as "well you ought to know .. that we are a mental institution , so sorry one of our patients hurt you !" So are we suppose to know better or just avoid the risk altogether.

Well the onus is on those who runs the centre or "hospital"
to keep those seriously mental under control and not " under wraps ".
For instance in the USA and Europe alone countless cases of child molestation were committed by the clergy themselves or pastors ( lay people ). Many were caught while many too were released after huge financial out of court settlements were paid to the victims .

So it is the responsibility of those non "sociopaths" and non mentally challenged to protect those others who sincerely seek solace , refuge and peace at whatever religious centre. So that the REAL Doctor and nurses can treat them.

Jessie Fong

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 690
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #23 on: May 18, 2012, 05:27:49 AM »
From my observation, the "sociopaths" and others who are in the Dharma centre for reasons other than the Dharma tend to drop out after a while. They don't last long.  This is probably due to lack of merits or their negative karma which prevent them from benefiting from the centre. If they are not really interested in the Dharma, you can see them falling asleep during pujas and Dharma talks. After a while, they stop coming. Some may decide to do Dharma fulltime, but if they are not sincere, and they don't transform, somehow the faults will surface. Then due to conflicts, they will leave on their own or will be told to leave. Some stay with the centre for a long time, but do not progress much in their spiritual path due to lack of commitment or effort. But I think they are still better off in the centre than elsewhere. In the outside world, people are  not so tolerant.

Beware the person who comes to any Dharma centre, wanting to join in all the activities and can be seen at each and every event.  This type of person creates a hype, projecting a totally different personality of his real self.  Why are they here in the Dharma Centre?  Was their true purpose to seek Dharma?

I agree with you Midakpa that ...  others who are in the Dharma centre for reasons other than the Dharma tend to drop out after a while. They don't last long.

They can't last long - their motivation in joining the Dharma centre was not right in the first place. 

Tenzin K

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 835
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2012, 12:11:49 PM »
I believe this type of people is everywhere and I’m not surprise to see them at a dharma centre. As mentioned dhrama centre is like a hospital and the people are the sick patients. What should we expects? Lessen our expectation of thinking meeting the people as good as Buddha will make us happier. Ideal case but we still in samsara.

Meeting such people in dharma centre we always off guard and sometimes be open due to people from the spiritual centre.

At the beginning the care and help from this people definitely buy us of. But as we learn up dharma we should be able to asses. Any action from such person we would be able to see through if their act doesn’t not match the motivation.  What I’m trying to say is that rather than complaint of the personal level why not we check in spiritual level since we are in the dharma centre.

What important is we don’t get influence nor set any negative perception towards the centre and the essence of the Buddha teaching. That’s why I much emphasize on our personal learning on dharma because eventually we are the one can help ourselves by wisdom and knowledge, of course experience too.   

Positive Change

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1008
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2012, 02:29:06 PM »
There are sociopaths everywhere we go, not just in dharma centres. All of us need help as long as we're not Buddhas. So let's not make it sound like those who are not in dharma centres are mentally "well".  It's interesting to read the traits of sociopaths.

"Glibness/superficial charm
Manipulative and conning
Grandiose sense of self
Pathological lying
Lack of remorse, shame or guilt
Shallow emotions
Incapacity for love
Need for stimulation
Callousness/lack of empathy
Poor behavioral controls/impulsive nature
Early behavior problems/juvenile delinquency
Irresponsibility/unreliability
Promiscuous sexual behavior/infidelity
Lack of realistic life plan/parasitic lifestyle
Criminal or entrepreneurial versatility
Contemptuous of those who seek to understand them
Does not perceive that anything is wrong with them
Authoritarian
Secretive
Paranoid
Only rarely in difficulty with the law, but seeks out situations where their tyrannical behavior will be tolerated, condoned, or admired
Conventional appearance
Goal of enslavement of their victim(s)
Exercises despotic control over every aspect of the victim's life
Has an emotional need to justify their crimes and therefore needs their victim's affirmation (respect, gratitude and love)
Ultimate goal is the creation of a willing victim
Incapable of real human attachment to another
Unable to feel remorse or guilt
Narcissism, grandiosity (self-importance not based on achievements)
May state readily that their goal is to rule the world"

To a certain degree, we all have many of these traits. So my conclusion is we are all different levels of sociopaths; some more severe than others. Dharma is the only way to heal us.

Most interesting, as I too can identify quite a few of these traits in myself. Which I guess makes us all sociopaths as you say Klein... Which means its absolutely normal to have sociopaths in the Dharma centre. But the difference is, I believe is, in this realization we will then push ourselves to rid of or at least curb these traits... this is where our Dharma practice comes in.

It is classic, as mentioned before, if we are not sick why would we go to a hospital... on the same note, if we were not spiritually "damaged" why would we need a Dharma centre. :)

negra orquida

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 205
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2012, 03:20:39 PM »
Was talking to a friend who met the author of a book on how to identify sociopaths.  As most of us would have some of the traits listed by Klein, what is the main difference between us and a "real" sociopath?  This is like how to identify a common cold with pneumonia.  Similar symptoms but one is more deadly. 

What is being described here is based on what my friend told me, which was based on the results of observations by researchers, its not about degrading a particular group of people or labelling them as something bad.. it is just how they are.  If i am wrong pls do correct me :)

Sociopaths generally delight in making a "victim" emotionally / mentally miserable.  They do this with emotional blackmail, twisting words and meanings around, putting words in their mouths.  Sociopaths are very intelligent and the way they twist words do make sense from a different perspective.  Its not blatantly illogical twisting.  And the more the victim tries to argue / debate with the sociopath, the more fuel the sociopath gets to further tire the victim out mentally by going round and round some more.

Usually before they can get into that kind of relationship with the victim where they can show this side of them more freely, they are very nice and agreeable people, and appear to be very generous or would seem to be willing to sacrifice themselves for the victim... this is how they create trust or bonding and some form of attachment.  So when their alter ego surfaces, the victim would not be able to reconcile the change in behaviour immediately and take action accordingly.

i guess the practice for us when we are in a situation with a sociopath, is to let go of what we thought the person was before their other stripes were revealed, then we can remove ourselves from the situation that the sociopath is trying to create. e.g.  a stranger vs friend uses emotional blackmail on us, we would have more mental anguish with the friend because we have expectations on how a friend should behave, and it is harder to cut off contact (which sometimes is the best way to handle the situation) with a friend compared to a stranger.

sonamdhargey

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 406
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #27 on: May 26, 2012, 06:56:34 AM »
Was talking to a friend who met the author of a book on how to identify sociopaths.  As most of us would have some of the traits listed by Klein, what is the main difference between us and a "real" sociopath?  This is like how to identify a common cold with pneumonia.  Similar symptoms but one is more deadly. 

What is being described here is based on what my friend told me, which was based on the results of observations by researchers, its not about degrading a particular group of people or labelling them as something bad.. it is just how they are.  If i am wrong pls do correct me :)

Sociopaths generally delight in making a "victim" emotionally / mentally miserable.  They do this with emotional blackmail, twisting words and meanings around, putting words in their mouths.  Sociopaths are very intelligent and the way they twist words do make sense from a different perspective.  Its not blatantly illogical twisting.  And the more the victim tries to argue / debate with the sociopath, the more fuel the sociopath gets to further tire the victim out mentally by going round and round some more.

Usually before they can get into that kind of relationship with the victim where they can show this side of them more freely, they are very nice and agreeable people, and appear to be very generous or would seem to be willing to sacrifice themselves for the victim... this is how they create trust or bonding and some form of attachment.  So when their alter ego surfaces, the victim would not be able to reconcile the change in behaviour immediately and take action accordingly.

i guess the practice for us when we are in a situation with a sociopath, is to let go of what we thought the person was before their other stripes were revealed, then we can remove ourselves from the situation that the sociopath is trying to create. e.g.  a stranger vs friend uses emotional blackmail on us, we would have more mental anguish with the friend because we have expectations on how a friend should behave, and it is harder to cut off contact (which sometimes is the best way to handle the situation) with a friend compared to a stranger.

Negra I totally relate to your post. It was so similar to what i've experienced. I've encountered many situations like this from someone very close to me and it pretty much affected me. I was emotionally drained and run downed. I seeked help and opinions from professionals and also from the internet. With the information I've gathered, I've managed to handle the situation better by understanding what the problem was. I believe that person is a sociopath with narcissistic personality disorder, based on researches these traits are normally developed from childhood through excessive pampering. I was advise that there are 2 ways to deal with these type of sociopath are: 1. Learn to live with them, 2. completely stay away from these type of sociopath as they feed on you by putting you up and down like a rollercoaster ride  ;D .The chances of these type of sociopath to change is almost zero without psychotherapy because they never thought they have a problem rather feel they are perfectly normal and they lack empathy. They are unable to see their victim as the victim rather they see themselves as the victim. As a Buddhist, we should not abandoned them, but if you're affected my opinion is stay away to avoid feeding them to enforced their habituation further after all it is a habit they developed from childhood.

Big Uncle

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1995
Re: Sociopaths in the Dharma centre
« Reply #28 on: May 26, 2012, 09:10:52 AM »
Well this is a very interesting thread. I have my own share of sociopath friends. They do make very intriguing company though. But I always leave their company feeling that I have been insulted or made used of without even knowing. I wonder if there's anyway I can help such friends. Do you guys think sociopaths can turn around and be reformed?

For all that it's worth, they do make good objects for our practice of patience. From my experience, there's anyway a sociopath would even remotely pay attention to any efforts to reform them if you have something they want. That's what i noticed and my guess is that he would only respect me if I am smarter than my friend here and he is unable to outsmart me. I would earn my friend's respect this way, I think. But what do you guys think?