Prof. Nevzat Tarhan: “Global narcissism makes people isolated”


Psychology Days, which was held for the 6th time this year with the theme of 'Human and Humanity in the Digital World', brought together experts in their fields. During the two-day program, digitalization and humanity were discussed in many aspects. Psychiatrist Prof. Nevzat Tarhan, who held the opening conference of the program under the title of 'Digital Narcissism', sought an answer to the question of whether technology makes our lives easier while time taking us captive at the same. Are we becoming slaves to our egos? Tarhan, who directed his question to the participants, said that digitalization has a significant impact on narcissism. Noting that the increase in global narcissism makes people lonely, Tarhan said that human beings have never been so intertwined with technology and have never become more isolated until this time. Pointing out that narcissistic traits can occur in all of us from time to time, Tarhan added that the important thing is to try to manage narcissistic feelings. Tarhan said that "Narcissism develops blindness in the person, and the person does not see their own mistakes and added that narcissists are very selective in their relationships; that they are the entity they are in love with, and that they show themselves by devaluing others.

The theme of this year's 6th Psychology Days held by Üsküdar University is 'Man and Humanity in the Digital World'. President of Üsküdar University Prof. Nevzat Tarhan gave the opening conference of the 2-day program under the title of "Digital Narcissism" while Psychotherapist Prof. İbrahim Bilgen spoke under the title of "Feeling Good".

The 6th Psychology Days started with the opening speeches by Üsküdar University Psychology Club President Ali Gökhan İşidir and Üsküdar University Department of Psychology Faculty Member and Positive Psychology Coordinator Asst. Prof. Fatma Turan. Deputy Dean of Üsküdar University Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences Assoc. Prof. Asil Özdoğru, who organized the conference, added that this organization, which has become a tradition, has become a valuable event for both Üsküdar University and the world of psychology.

Does technology make us slaves to our egos?

Giving the opening conference at the program held at Üsküdar University Çarşı Campus Emir Nebi Conference Hall Prof. Nevzat Tarhan noted that the three great dangers as climate change, global inequality and loneliness awaiting the world were put on the agenda in Davos in 2019. Prof. Nevzat Tarhan said that "The reason for loneliness is narcissism. The rise of global narcissism is making people isolated. Digitalization also has a very important impact here. Man has never been so involved with technology until this period. While technology makes our lives easier, is it also taking us captive? Does it make us slaves to our ego? It is necessary to analyze this.".

Prof. Nevzat Tarhan: "Modernism led people to satisfaction with concrete values instead of abstract values."

In his speech titled 'Digital Narcissism', Tarhan underlined that modernism has changed the philosophy of human life and said that "The fact that a person chooses hedonism instead of self-transcending ideals as a life goal has become the global doctrine of modernism. Human beings only show the level of immaturity to satisfy their body. A person with a high level of development cares about mental satisfaction. It tries to seek truth with high values such as art, music, philosophy and religion. Modernism led man to satisfaction with concrete values instead of abstract values. We will experience the consequences and we have started to live.".

Tarhan said that narcissism emerged as the second stage in people who chose hedonism, loneliness that caused avoidance of social responsibilities and alienation in the third stage, and that situations such as unhappiness, depression and self-harm spread in epidemic in the fourth stage.

Prof. Tarhan: "Narcissism has increased while trying to train people on self-confidence"

Speaking about the studies on narcissism, Tarhan stated that "According to research, narcissistic characteristics seem to be more intense at a young age. As we get to know life and become wiser, the narcissistic characteristics of people decrease. And again, while research is trying to teach self-confidence, the perception of freedom as limitlessness and irresponsibility is a course that brings self-centeredness and narcissistic personality traits to the fore globally in humanity. 'Open class policies' that do not teach boundaries and responsibilities that set free… The freer the child is, the more talent emerges, and that restrict control have brought about the spread of selfishness under the name of individualization. This led to an epidemic of narcissism. Even if there are schools that still have open classroom policies, this system has not worked because young people do not supervise themselves unless expected. When they said that children should be free, they became irresponsible. These policies have started to harm social life.".

Prof. Tarhan: "As the national income per person increases, happiness decreases"

Referring to the happiness study conducted between 1950-2000, Tarhan said that "It is seen that happiness decreases as national income per person increases. This shows that material well-being is increasing globally, however, psychological, social and spiritual well-being is not increasing in parallel. This study confirms the American saying that ‘money does not buy happiness.’. Another study showing the rate of clinical depression in men and women over 3 years also shows us that the rate of depression is gradually increasing.".

Tarhan: "The person who says I am not a narcissist is a narcissist"

Stating that narcissistic personality disorder and narcissistic mood are different concepts, Prof. Nevzat Tarhan said: "Narcissistic mood is present in all of us from time to time. The important thing is to manage these emotions. The person is the narcissist if one says, "I am not a narcissist." Narcissism develops blindness in the person, and the person does not see their own mistakes.".

Tarhan, who cited Hitler as an example because of one of the biggest wars in history, social, political and military consequences, said: "There is love and freedom in his family, he is a music enthusiast, but the greatest tyrant in human history has emerged. He considers the German race superior and combines this with Darwin's theory that ‘the strong swallow the weak, so we must be strong so that we can dominate the world.’ What Hitler did was ethnic narcissism. Since he was raised with so much love, his ego is so inflated that he begins to despise everything. At the same time, he has a very hardworking, principled and honest personality, however, he has no ethical values. Since he lacked accountability, narcissism took him into his own hands and made him a dictator. For this reason, the opposition has gained value. Even at home, if children cannot disagree with what the mother or father says, that person is a dictator.”.

Narcissists are too afraid to be ordinary...

Underlining that narcissists are very afraid of being ordinary, Tarhan made his remarks and listed the characteristics of narcissistic people: "They feed on praise against depression, and they want to feel that they are special. They work all the time because they are too afraid of failure. For example, Napoleon and Alexander have this personality. When they fail, they commit suicide and just as Hitler committed suicide. What narcissists do is appreciated, however, their personalities are not liked. Narcissists cannot see that the problem is caused by themselves. The things they complain about are actually caused by themselves and they are not aware of it. Narcissists feed on crushing the weak. It can also be seen between spouses. One constantly humiliates and belittles the other, and then says 'you live because of me' and attaches it to themselves. Narcissists want a slave-master relationship. They exaggerate their own abilities, they always expect to be respected, and they have money and power in their dream worlds. They are hypersensitive to criticism. They are self-interested, and they think that special people can understand them. They are not able to empathize, and they have a lot of feelings of grudge, anger and jealousy. Their sense of entitlement is always directed towards them, and when they achieve their great ideals, their true personalities are more revealed. They do not show their fears, they are talented and assertive.”.

Narcissists act as if their dreams have come true...

Stating that narcissists are afraid but pretend not to be afraid, Tarhan also listed the fears of narcissists as follows: "The mental walls between fear and trust are very thin and variable. They are capable and ambitious to show themselves. Most narcissists come out of leaders. Democracy allows narcissists to balance these traits.".

Tarhan also explained the most noticeable characteristics of narcissistic people as follows: "They have dreams of becoming big, famous and rich, and they act as if these dreams have come true. They see themselves as an important person. They accomplish more than their peers. They can easily defame others. They like to be interested in the imperfections of others. If what they want is not done, they get angry and they do not care about their reason. They do not realize their own mistakes. When they are forced to admit their mistakes, they easily become depressed and experience exaggerated emotions. They try to say that people who are better known and well-known than themselves are not that great. They find a way to use others to achieve their goals. They categorize everything, prioritizing what is most important to them. They are very selective in their relationships, and they are the one they fall in love with. They want to help if it will inflate their egos, they will be talked about and even will have a statue of them, and they want their children to be more perfect than they are. They do not have strong people with them. Side characters who do everything are their best helpers, the weak people are constantly giving of themselves, they hold on to their side by praising the narcissist, they put themselves in the foreground by devaluing others.".

Tarhan added that narcissists quickly become depressed and commit suicide when they experience injury and loss, and that the new generation of leaders try to tame their narcissistic feelings.

Prof. Tarhan: "A narcissist cannot be made fun of!"

Prof. Nevzat Tarhan also addressed that how narcissistic people should be treated in his speech and said that “If you have a close relationship with a narcissist, you can make them feel the fear of losing what you value by saying 'if it goes on like this, you will lose what you value'. That is when they start to back down. You are not going to joke when you are talking to a narcissist. You have to speak clearly, making them feel that you are serious and determined." Tarhan concluded his speech by giving some suggestions to those who encounter narcissistic people as follows:

"Think critically, know your own purpose. Do not decide right away. Narcissists have to live in a world where there is nothing bigger than their own ego. If you praise the narcissist too much, their ego will inflate. Praise them with their reasons and explain their mistakes with their reasons. If you do not protect your own boundaries, the narcissist will dominate you. They are very skilled at gaining a space. Act according to behavior, not words. They cannot understand empathy; however, you can confront them with their own interests and make them act empathetic. If you act aggressively with the angry narcissist, they show incredible potential to suddenly become oppressed. Set your own limits. When things get crazy, they become unhappy and immediately try to cut loose from it. The narcissist should receive the reward they expect when they accomplish something difficult. Criticism can easily become a weapon that can be abused for a narcissistic person.".

Prof. İbrahim Bilgen: "What is regarded in happiness or unhappiness is the phone in our hands"

Prof. İbrahim Bilgen, who participated in the program online with his speech titled 'The Disease of Our Age: Feeling Good', said that people are in pursuit of being happy and feeling good. Stating that people look at the phones in their hands at the slightest happiness or unhappiness today, Bilgen said: "The concept of happiness is also an important content of the advertising sector, look at the names of the books on the bookstore shelves, most of them are related to happiness. The truth of being happy is that we can get in touch with our values.".

Noting that the emotion that develops us is pain, Bilgen stated that "Our mind protects us from pain with our previous experiences. It tries to protect us when it senses things that we might be distressed by. It exists to sustain human. Unhappiness is an indispensable process of human. We are happy with our choices by taking ideas from our minds and making decisions based on the values in our hearts. We must live for our life values. Values keep us alive. Every parent should raise their child with their values.".

Prof. Bilgen: "Let's not be the tools of our devices"

Prof. İbrahim Bilgen, who stated that the difficulty of being human is due to the fact that he is a verbal being, said that we are overwhelmed by our efforts to feel good and completed his words as follows:

"We live in fear of missing out on life. Let's not be the tools of our devices. There is no such thing as a past and a future. This is the fabrication of humanity. We can remember the past now, we can imagine the future fantasy, and the thought of the future. The present does not require perspective. For this reason, mindfulness has started to gain importance today. The reason is that mindfulness connects us from autopilot to mindfulness pilot. Values are what we live in every moment.".

Prof. Hıdır İlyas Göz: "The digital world has advantages and disadvantages for scientists"

Üsküdar University faculty member Prof. Hıdır İlyas Göz, who made his speech titled 'What is the Function of Digital Technology in Scientific Research?' within the scope of the 6th Psychology Days, noted that the digital world has advantages and disadvantages for scientists. Prof. Göz stated that "Science works with thoughts, concepts, and hypotheses for a phenomenon we want to understand. No matter what technology we use, you cannot do it without thought. It can only have a supportive place in digital scientific studies.".

The second day program of the 6th Psychology Days also consisted of variety of topics...

In the second day program of the 6th Psychology Days, which is held online, Prof. Sırrı Akbaba with the speech titled 'Cyber Bullying', Prof. Gül Eryılmaz with the speech titled 'Brain and Emotions', Asst. Prof. Meltem Narter with the speech titled 'Patriarchy in Digital Transformation', Asst. Prof. Elif Kurtuluş with the speech titled 'The Effects of Social Media on Eating Behaviors and Body Image', Dr. Meral Aydın with the speech titled 'From Emotion to Fiction Human', Instructor Güliz Zeynep Tarman with the speech titled 'Clinical Deposition and Our Relationship with Objects', Dr. Clinic Psy. Cumhur Avcil with the speech titled 'Use of Technology in Clinical Psychology', Dr. Ayşe Berna Sarı Arasıl with the speech titled 'Computerized Trainings on Cognitive Bias in Anxiety and Depression' and Asst. Prof. Fatma Turan with the speech titled 'Our Emotions in the Digital World' participated.


Üsküdar News Agency (ÜNA)