Note: This was originally a Twitter thread I posted a week or so ago. It generated a fair amount of negative backlash so I thought I’d post it here for your amusement. Some may find it offensive. Some may find it liberating.
One of the most important lessons I learned as a man was how to recognize manipulation.
There are a group of people called “sociopaths” who (for whatever reason) have no problem hurting others.
According to Dr. Martha Stout, sociopaths make up about 4% of the population (1 in 25 people.)
These people are motivated by one thing: control over others.
They have no problem lying, taking your money, or doing whatever it takes to control you.
Thus the appeal of religion.
Sociopaths are keenly observant of human behavior.
They figured out long ago that if they make a man feel ashamed of his sexual impulses, they could control the man.
Sexual impulses never end. This creates perpetual & incurable guilt. Perfect conditions for religious control.
The person most likely to be abused by a religious sociopath is someone with a guilty conscience who is earnestly seeking relief.
Once they capture all their perfect converts, they use propaganda to manufacture guilt where none previously existed.
The surest way to tell a religious authority is about to pitch you a pile of bullshit?
He opens his argument with lofty appeals to “holiness” followed by the “unworthiness” of man.
This rhetoric is designed to turn off critical thinking. “How DARE you question God Almighty!”
Some favored rhetoric of contemporary religious sociopaths:
“Be a servant leader”
“Every man’s battle” [with “lust”]
“Be a one woman man” [i.e. “eyes for only her”]
These are ambiguous (and un-biblical) commands that place heavy burdens on a man’s sexuality.
To be fair, many religious leaders are NOT sociopaths.
They may be victims just like the people they’re trying to help.
They may repeat the same rhetoric because that’s what they were taught.
Most pastors are too afraid to examine the Scriptures independent of tradition.
Normal people are duped by sociopaths because we have difficulty believing only certain people could be “pure evil.”
Instead, we emphasize that we all have a “sin nature.” Any of us would commit great evil in the right conditions.
Thus our abusive leaders are excused as “fallible humans.”
Sociopaths never look like stereotypical “evil” people.
They are charming, articulate, and appear to be “good” people.
They can often articulate an underlying insecurity or belief better than we can ourselves.
We tend to trust people who can articulate our own thoughts.
Never trust someone because they appear to be righteous or have authority.
Instead, ask yourself:
“Are they giving me truth that sets me free? Or pseudo-truth that keeps me in bondage?”
If a religious authority is constantly appealing to your sense of pity, and yet leaves you feeling ashamed of your sexuality…
Chances are close to 100% that you’re dealing with a sociopath.
In our day, the religious “pity play” is an appeal to the woman.
“Think of your poor wife!”
“You need to man up and be a better husband.”
“How DARE you treat a woman that way!”
Pity drives out objective thinking and puts you in perfect state for manipulation.
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