The Dark Triad
According to academia, individuals possessing Dark Triad traits are social parasites, whose modus operandi is one of callous manipulation.
The Dark Triad is a label that consigns its bearer to the stigma of a form of potentially dangerous sociopathy.
No doubt, the cold hard stare of an evil psychopath hell bent on your destruction, is a frightening place to find yourself.
But boundless self-confidence, effortless charm and icy decisiveness under pressure are also traits of the Dark Triad. Traits that may well prove useful in negotiating a landscape fraught with danger and challenges.
The Dark Triad is comprised of three distinct characteristics.
Narcissism is the pursuit of gratification from vanity. It is the egotistic admiration of one's own attributes. The term originated from Greek Mythology where the young Narcissus fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water.
Machiavellianism is the employment of cunning and duplicity for one’s own gain. The word comes from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolò Machiavelli, born in 1469, who wrote The Prince, and was famed for his statecraft.
Psychopathy is characterized by persistent antisocial behaviour, impaired empathy, and bold, disinhibited, egotistical traits.
The Dark World and the Shadow
The world is far from being all sunshine and rainbows. Many a Man has left home to plough his own furrow, only to find this Truth out the hard way. Hapless grins and naïve dispositions do not discourage the predators that inhabit the darkness. They draw them onto you with the promise of an easy meal. I know. I have been there. The Dark World is a place where action and consequence are inseparable. It is a place where fate can manifest the grandest of visions, or snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Most of all, it is where:
‘…no one is coming to save you. Your power in the world is all that you and your loved ones can depend upon.’
Just as the world, your environment, has a dark side, so do you. The Psychologist Carl Jung presented a concept of an unconscious aspect of the personality which the conscious ego does not always identify in itself. The Shadow. He thought encountering your Shadow, either by choice because of illuminating ego-consciousness, or because of a traumatic breakdown of ones persona, was a key point in self-development.
This concept is in opposition to most mainstream teachings that encourage you to repress any acknowledgement of the darkness that dwells within you. Be good, be a ‘nice guy’, follow the rules and everything will be just fine.
This is a catastrophic error. Just as the world can be a dark and terrible place, so can the essence of every Man. Without acknowledgement and incorporation of this into your psyche, you are toothless. Either you are predator, or prey.
A controlled fusion of the Shadow gives Men a palpable fierceness that confers strength of character. With the Shadow in place, needless, desperate shows of anger and violence, which are most often manifestations of resentment and weakness, are no longer needed. A metaphorical hand on the hilt of a sheathed sword is ample warning to those in need of such a gesture. Should a Man need to unleash his Shadow consciously, he exponentially increases his effectiveness.
As Robert Bly notes:
“The man without fierceness allows his own boundaries to be invaded, and in the moment that happens, his uninitiated passivity will turn to rage…”
Sadly, Men blithely ignorant or dismissive of their shadow are all too common. Why else would we consume stories, movies and video games about the Anti-hero with such gusto?
We long for the added depth of character it would give us.
Acknowledgement and incorporation of one’s Shadow carries deep consequences. Descent into the Shadow self, especially when forced upon the individual, does not come with a guarantee of ascent back into the light. But should you succeed, the journey you have set yourself on is profound.
I see the introspective analysis and focused development of one’s Dark Triad traits as part of the assimilation of the shadow.
Let us shine a spot light upon the Man who introduced me to The Dark Triad concept.
The Nine Laws
Ivan Throne is an unusual Man. And he has written an unusual book. The Nine Laws. A book described as “so dangerous, men should be imprisoned for reading it, even if they have committed no crime”
I shared his work with some friends to gauge their opinion. One Man immediately denounced it because it was so confrontational to his psyche.
I smiled when he did so. I truly believe you can learn something from everyone. But if you really want to challenge your perspective, look for people far outside the bell curve of normal.
Ivan Throne strives to be anything but 'normal'.
After a close brush with death as a child left him profoundly deaf, and he was moved up a grade at school to maximise his intellectual gifts, the bullying that followed gave him the realisation he needed more than the usual suite of talents to excel.
He decided he needed to become a Ninja.
Maybe it is not so unusual for a 12 year old boy being bullied to fantasise about attaining great skill and power, and with it status. What is unusual, is for that boy to find the few remaining Ninja, and by 16, leave home to enter their family thousands of miles away and train to become part of their ancient order.
At the age of 23, a fully fledged Ninja, he left the training halls for the wider world. With nothing but a high school diploma to his name, he began climbing the slippery corporate ladder, eventually using his extensive experience of classical Japanese battlefield arts and philosophy to mentor high flying executives.
But where his fate really ignites, is the juxtaposition of his knowledge, with the newfound hunger in Men for guidance in the Dark World.
Ivan’s book, The Nine Laws, is the literary equivalent of hand forged steel.
Much like the complex layers of carbon in well tempered steel, it is not a simple matter of describing the sharp and shiny finished object if you want to understand its structure.
I could outline each of the The Nine Laws that form the basis of the text, but the essence of the book would no doubt get lost. In short, The Nine Laws is a journey into the Dark World, where pity and self righteousness will only speed your impending doom, and where competence and clarity of vision might just see you reap glittering reward.
It is blunt permission to explore some of the Dark Triad traits in yourself that have perhaps remained hidden in your Shadow until now. It lays bare the path you must take to leverage those Dark Triad Traits to attain your sacred purpose.
Logos is the verbalisation of logic and knowledge, or from a Christian perspective, Logos is synonymous with God.
‘In the beginning was the Word…’
Logos is the articulated Truth, and this is precisely the energy that flows through The Nine Laws. At times this Truth is enlightening to read, at others, downright painful. But on reflection, accurate and just.
The concept of manifesting your divine purpose is reinforced in Ivan’s writing through the backdrop of ‘Thought, Word, Deed.’
As another Dark Triad Man once said, ‘Knowing is not enough, we must do. Willing is not enough, we must apply.’
It is lastly important to note, that with all the revelation of darkness, shadows and Dark Triad personality traits, The Nine Laws directs the reader to aspire to greatness through enlightenment. The warning is clear, denigration of The Nine Laws, attempting to twist reality for gluttonous gain and subversion or ignorance of Truth will have dire consequences.
‘Foundations of lies will collapse in flames.’
That said, let us re-examine the Dark Triad traits once more, this time through the lens of The Nine Laws.
“The Narcissism of the Dark Triad Man is…not merely grand infatuation with the self…it is the driven, hardened vision of a man who believes in his own future achievement with such force, drive and experienced focused mind that reality itself shimmers and shifts.”
“Machiavellianism…is the masterful control of revelation and the prevention of degradation…it is not immoral to control the revelation of word. Utility is, itself, the arbiter of your lever of Machiavellian exertion. Do what is useful, do not do what is not.”
“His competence is unapologetic. There is no shame in matchless competence. There is no hesitation in his execution of thought, word or deed. Quick is not evil. Friction is removed through his vision and planning. Great skill is not an immoral quality. His narcissism and Machiavellianism are controlled with utterly fearless direction…”
Ponder these statements. Turn your attention for a while intrinsically, and descry the Shadow that follows you. You can try to supress it, or feign ignorance of its existence. Then, you are a puppet to the subconscious influence of the Shadow.
Alternatively, you can steel yourself and explore your Shadow with enough honest enquiry that you become one with it. The Nine Laws is an ideal place to begin that process.
Brothers, your Evolution is just beginning.
Click the link below to purchase The Nine Laws.