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Needs of the Idiosyncratic Type

 

The needs of the Idiosyncratic type are derived from John M. Oldham's description of the Idiosyncratic style. In Stoic philosophical and psychological theory these needs are vices. They are analogous to Karen Horney's neurotic needs, which are better called irrational needs. They are irrational because they require things not in our power and involve false judgment of what is good or evil. (see G. Sterling).

Irrational needs are vices. The vices listed below are based on certain false values. The source of every vice is a false judgment of what is good or evil. But our judgments are in our power. Therefore, our vices are in our power.

The idealized image is chiefly a glorification of the needs which have developed (Horney, pg. 277).

  • needs to march to a distinctive beat, different from the conventional rhythms that most people follow (Oldham, 252)
  • needs to be tuned into and sustained by their own feelings and belief systems, whether or not others accept or understand their particular world view or approach to life (252)
  • needs to be self-directed and independent; needs to avoid close relationships (252)
  • needs to avoid convention; needs an interesting, unusual, often eccentric lifestyle (252)
  • needs to be open to anything; needs the occult, the extrasensory, and the supernatural (252)
  • needs to engage in abstract and speculative thinking (252)
  • needs to be keen observers of others, particularly sensitive to how other people react to them (253)
  • needs to avoid accepting the customary explanations of what's going on in this world (254)
  • needs to consider anything as real (254)
  • needs to avoid being locked into the accepted explanations and interpretations that seem unequivocally true to most people (254)
  • needs to live their lives according to the sensations, feelings, and ideas that spring from inside them (255)
  • needs to be a nonconformist (255)
  • needs to seek the company of like-minded others in order to be more comfortable in life (255)
  • needs to avoid "joining"; needs to avoid affiliating or conforming (255)
  • needs to avoid accepting or espousing anyone else's principles and beliefs (255)
  • needs to heed their inner voices, not those of other people (255)
  • needs to avoid basing their self-esteem on following protocol or being correct from someone else's point of view (255)
  • needs to build a strange, eccentric lifestyle (256)
  • needs to be indifferent to what others think about their habits (256)
  • needs to avoid trying to fit in (256)
  • needs to reject standard explanations and conventions and rely on inner experience alone to assess the nature of the real world (257)
  • needs to question and wonder (257)
  • needs to to reinvent the universe in search of reality and truth (258)
  • needs to seek emotional experience where the emotions are felt in all their intensity for their own sake (260)
  • needs mind/emotional/spiritual expansion (260)
  • needs new experiences to send them to new peaks of feeling and awareness of their inner being (260)
  • needs to test the limits of emotional and spiritual experience (260)
  • needs to always give priority to their inner emotional experience over what others consider to be objective external reality (261)
  • needs to be free from rules and conformist expectations (262)

Schizotypal personality, or character, disorder is comprised of these and other irrational needs, or vices.


Values of the Idiosyncratic Type



Karen Horney (1950). Neurosis and Human Growth. New York: W. W. Norton.

John M. Oldham and Lois B. Morris (1995). The New Personality Self-Portrait: Why You Think, Work, Love, and Act the Way You Do. Rev. ed. New York: Bantam.

Grant Sterling (2005). "Core Stoicism." International Stoic Forum.





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Key to the Stoic Philosophy of Epictetus