The hot topic in this episode is the narcissist in a marriage and relationships, the effects on mental and psychological health.
We look at it from a different perspective, through the Science of the Nafs, this psychological model which is based on the divine principals from the Quran and Sunnah, and an approach that offers solutions.
What You’ll Learn in this Podcast:
- The Science of The Nafs perspective on Narcissism
- Learn to recognise Narcissism
- Believing in the Power to Change
Mentioned on the Podcast: (Click on Links)
Science of the Nafs Perspective
Within the mental health and psychology community, narcissism is often described as a personality disorder.
However, we approach it from a different angle.
The question therefore is, what is narcissism and how do you recognise it?
Narcissism is not limited to a specific gender. It’s a behaviour pattern. The narcissist is someone who has an inflated sense of self-importance and is constantly in need of validation from others.
The person who has the narcissistic challenge is always concerned with success and looking good in front of others.
These types of people often seem confident and they’re quite ambitious.
However, beneath this facade, they may struggle with low self-esteem, intense fear, and a constant need for external validation. They can become defensive, angry, and frustrated with themselves and others.
They can also be prone to mood swings, making it challenging for those around them.
The person may have an exaggerated sense of what’s actually happening in the world, their own abilities, and what they can do.
On the other hand, it could be the opposite of that.
They believe that they don’t have any ability, and they feel imprisoned in the world of their circumstances. There’s envy, comparing themselves to other people and often they have a lack of empathy.
The Science of the Nafs approach to narcissism is very different and for me coming from the background of Islamic psychology, the whole labelling doesn’t help the situation.
The one who suffers from this behavioural pattern, and the one who is in a relationship; in the marriage with this person, both suffer.
And of course, narcissistic behaviour is unacceptable. That doesn’t mean that the husband and wife who are on the receiving end of this are meant to stay in that situation.
Not at all!
Safety is the number one thing. So, if someone’s safety and mental well-being is being threatened by this type of behaviour, then actions need to be taken, and help needs to be sought.
That’s My Disclaimer
Let me reiterate that this is something that people are suffering with, that’s husbands and wives.
My experience in helping these types of people is with their behaviour change.
The basis for my entire thinking around this is based on the Hadith of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) where he said,
“‘For every sickness, there is a cure.”
The actual cure comes from As-Shafee, Allah (swt) the One who cures.
Once a person recognises and submits to the fact that Shifaa is from Allah alone, then it becomes very possible to cure all diseases.
In the traditions of The Prophet (saw) he said,
‘Indeed, I have been sent to perfect the character.’
That’s a piece of revelation informing us that the character is something that isn’t fixed.
So, the good news is that there is no narcissist per se.
There are only people who suffer from narcissistic behavioural patterns.
The sufferer of this type of behavioural challenge is in a constant flux of moods, one minute high, next minute low, one minute happy, next minute sad, and next minute totally irrational and defensive.
Their attacking of others comes from trying to preserve themselves by putting down others around them.
This is not justifying the destructive behaviour that we see from this type of person but it explains why it’s going on.
So the basic premise of Islamic psychology, the Science of the Nafs which is what I teach, is that your client, or your husband, or your wife does not have a personality disorder.
They have a problem with their behaviour. They have a problem with the way that they’re seeing the world.
The Science of The Nafs approach challenges the behaviour and resolves the behaviour by taking the person back to a divinely guided understanding of life.
Through divine guidance.
This Deen (religion) is complete. There is no deficiency.
There is no challenge, physical or psychological or spiritual, that the Deen does not cover. It has all the solutions within the Divine Revelation, which are eternally applicable.
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