PsychotherapyHELP Newsletter

by Paul J. Hannig, Ph.D. MFT 


"Provocation and Stupidity: Are They Related?"



Is it possible that people perish because of ignorance, stupidity, poor judgment, distorted thinking and other disorders of cognition?

I leave a good part of that answer up to you. It would seem that those individuals who use provocation as a communication tool are inviting disaster upon themselves. Unfortunately, the use of provocation usually brings down a lot of people who may be innocent targets.

Are these provocative people stupid?

Obviously, the answer lies in the way the brain processes and interprets information. Many times, perception, information processing and interpretation becomes greatly distorted and would seem to kick in the self/other destructive instinct. I call this the "perish instinct".

This is probably some form of paranoia where someone perceives evil where it does not exist and projects their own evil inclinations onto their targets. To pretend that evil does not exist is a mistake. However, you could say that using the word, "stupid," implies that an individual lacks certain social emotional skills. Disordered individuals certainly show deficits in social emotional relationships. There are social geniuses and emotional geniuses. There are also social emotional ignoramuses. Does that imply dysfunction? Possibly, if you consider the quantity of the dysfunction and the destructive consequences of such lack of knowledge. Distortion is a real problem in thinking.

We certainly need some kind of consensus criteria for determining evil and the demonic. It seems that the human mind is capable of manufacturing archetypes than mimic evil figures from the past. These provocateurs seemed to revolve through history and repeat the same old provocative, self-destructive themes.

Paradoxically, an individual who is immersed in the perish, self-destructive instinct eventually provokes other people to destroy the provocateur. This can be seen in some very serious blatant instances or can be experienced in every day human situations on a smaller scale.

Some examples from individual cases and from the social political arenas:

Borderline personalities and paranoid personalities are two examples where an individual may show considerable intelligence and even genius; only to regress into a mental illness where destructive provocation becomes a problem. Destruction is the only outcome. It becomes a set up as the targets of provocation eventually strike back and serve to eliminate the provocateur. This can be seen as a form of victory, but at a very high cost. Adolf Hitler was one such provocateur and was even seen as a Antichrist archetype. Saddam Hussein was also seen as a kind of savior destroyer, only to bring the house down on himself and many other innocent beings. As in the theme "history repeats itself in every generation", the president of Iran seems to be a reincarnation figure of the Hitler/Antichrist archetype.

How does this show up in everyday life?

Whichever way you wish to look at it, you will see this provocateur acting out the demonic archetype in marriages, interpersonal relationships, work situations and politics. If you entertain the possibility of the archetype of the messianic age, seemingly this mental health problem will go away as we all bathe in an ideal world of peace. This would require healing on a massive cosmic scale.

Is that possible?

Anything is possible. But, to be honest, I am a little pessimistic. It would require a shift in the multi-dimensional holographic structure of the universe. But, the holographic process is too extensive for this discussion. I can inform you though that extensive research and experimentation in holographic therapy are being conducted at Psychotherapyhelp and we will keep you informed of our findings and progress in this area.

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Questions about Therapy?


If it's therapy you are seeking, go to PsychotherapyHELP and check out my therapy links. Therapy is defined and structured for each individual client. I do not fit a client into one therapy model ... your therapy is designed for you and your situation alone. So, call for help ...  we're here to answer your questions. One phone call is all that it takes.


Thank you and I hope you continue to enjoy our newsletter. Please feel free to explore my web site at PsychotherapyHELP at You find articles to download, information on therapy, and links to an abundance of resources.


Paul J. Hannig, Ph.D. MFT



voice: 818-882-7404