The authoritarian mandate is to ensure the security, purity, and goodness of the in-group—to keep the good stuff in and the bad stuff out. In the s, white settlers in Georgia and other frontier areas lived in constant fear of American Indian tribes. They resented the federal government for not keeping them safe from what they perceived to be a mortal threat and a corrupting contagion.
Responding to these fears, President Jackson pushed hard for the passage of the Indian Removal Act, which eventually led to the forced relocation of 45, American Indians. At least 4, Cherokees died on the Trail of Tears, which ran from Georgia to the Oklahoma territory. An American strand of authoritarianism may help explain why the thrice-married, foul-mouthed Donald Trump should prove to be so attractive to white Christian evangelicals.
As Jerry Falwell Jr. When my research associates and I once asked politically conservative Christians scoring high on authoritarianism to imagine what their life and their world might have been like had they never found religious faith, many described utter chaos—families torn apart, rampant infidelity and hate, cities on fire, the inner rings of hell.
By contrast, equally devout politically liberal Christians who scored low on authoritarianism described a barren world depleted of all resources, joyless and bleak, like the arid surface of the moon. For authoritarian Christians, a strong faith—like a strong leader—saves them from chaos and tamps down fears and conflicts. Donald Trump is a savior, even if he preens and swears, and waffles on the issue of abortion. You must project bigness. Cognitive-science research suggests that people rely on personal schemata to process new social information efficiently and effectively.
A key to successful decision making is knowing what your schemata are, so that you can change them when you need to. In the negotiations for the Menie Estate in Scotland, Trump wore Tom Griffin down by making one outlandish demand after another and bargaining hard on even the most trivial issues of disagreement. He never quit fighting. He promised that its construction would create 1, permanent jobs in the Aberdeen area, but to date, only about have been documented. On the campaign trail, he has often said that he would simply pick up the phone and call people—say, a CEO wishing to move his company to Mexico—in order to make propitious deals for the American people.
For example, a contributor to Lyndon B. Obama, by contrast, has been accused of failing to put in the personal effort needed to forge close and productive relationships with individual members of Congress. Having said that, deal making is an apt description for only some presidential activities, and the modern presidency is too complex to rely mainly on personal relationships. Presidents work within institutional frameworks that transcend the idiosyncratic relationships between specific people, be they heads of state, Cabinet secretaries, or members of Congress.
The most-effective leaders are able to maintain some measure of distance from the social and emotional fray of everyday politics. Keeping the big picture in mind and balancing a myriad of competing interests, they cannot afford to invest too heavily in any particular relationship. For U. It has to be much more. Trump has hinted at other means through which he might address the kind of complex, long-standing problems that presidents face.
Amid the polarized political rhetoric of , it is refreshing to hear a candidate invoke the concept of compromise and acknowledge that different voices need to be heard. It is possible that Trump could prove to be adept as the helmsman of an unwieldy government whose operation involves much more than striking deals—but that would require a set of schemata and skills that appear to lie outside his accustomed way of solving problems. F or psychologists , it is almost impossible to talk about Donald Trump without using the word narcissism.
As nearly everybody knows, Trump has attached his name to pretty much everything he has ever touched—from casinos to steaks to a so-called university that promised to teach students how to become rich. It was the toughest day of his own life, Trump began. In the ancient Greek legend, the beautiful boy Narcissus falls so completely in love with the reflection of himself in a pool that he plunges into the water and drowns. The story provides the mythical source for the modern concept of narcissism, which is conceived as excessive self-love and the attendant qualities of grandiosity and a sense of entitlement.
Highly narcissistic people are always trying to draw attention to themselves.
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Repeated and inordinate self-reference is a distinguishing feature of their personality. What does Donald Trump really want? What are his most valued life goals? Narcissus wanted, more than anything else, to love himself. People with strong narcissistic needs want to love themselves, and they desperately want others to love them too—or at least admire them, see them as brilliant and powerful and beautiful, even just see them, period. The fundamental life goal is to promote the greatness of the self, for all to see. Accordingly, some experts insist that narcissistic motivations cover up an underlying insecurity.
But others argue that there is nothing necessarily compensatory, or even immature, about certain forms of narcissism. Consistent with this view, I can find no evidence in the biographical record to suggest that Donald Trump experienced anything but a loving relationship with his mother and father. Narcissistic people like Trump may seek glorification over and over, but not necessarily because they suffered from negative family dynamics as children.
Rather, they simply cannot get enough. Ever since grade school, Trump has wanted to be No. Attending New York Military Academy for high school, he was relatively popular among his peers and with the faculty, but he did not have any close confidants. As both a coach and an admiring classmate recall in The Trumps , Donald stood out for being the most competitive young man in a very competitive environment.
His need to excel—to be the best athlete in school, for example, and to chart out the most ambitious future career—may have crowded out intense friendships by making it impossible for him to show the kind of weakness and vulnerability that true intimacy typically requires.
Whereas you might think that narcissism would be part of the job description for anybody aspiring to become the chief executive of the United States, American presidents appear to have varied widely on this psychological construct. In a Psychological Science research article, behavioral scientists ranked U. Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Nixon, and Clinton were next.
Millard Fillmore ranked the lowest. Correlating these ranks with objective indices of presidential performance, the researchers found that narcissism in presidents is something of a double-edged sword. In business, government, sports, and many other arenas, people will put up with a great deal of self-serving and obnoxious behavior on the part of narcissists as long as the narcissists continually perform at high levels. Unlike Trump, he basically ignored his kids, to the point of refusing to acknowledge for some time that one of them was his. Psychological research demonstrates that many narcissists come across as charming, witty, and charismatic upon initial acquaintance.
They can attain high levels of popularity and esteem in the short term. As long as they prove to be successful and brilliant—like Steve Jobs—they may be able to weather criticism and retain their exalted status. But more often than not, narcissists wear out their welcome. Over time, people become annoyed, if not infuriated, by their self-centeredness. When narcissists begin to disappoint those whom they once dazzled, their descent can be especially precipitous. There is still truth today in the ancient proverb: Pride goeth before the fall. The president of the United States is more than a chief executive.
He or she is also a symbol, for the nation and for the world, of what it means to be an American. It is largely through the stories he tells or personifies, and through the stories told about him, that a president exerts moral force and fashions a nation-defining legacy. Like all of us, presidents create in their minds personal life stories—or what psychologists call narrative identities—to explain how they came to be who they are. This process is often unconscious, involving the selective reinterpretation of the past and imagination of the future.
A growing body of research in personality, developmental, and social psychology demonstrates that a life story provides adults with a sense of coherence, purpose, and continuity over time. In middle age, George W. Key events in the story were his decision to marry a steady librarian at age 31, his conversion to evangelical Christianity in his late 30s, and his giving up alcohol forever the day after his 40th birthday party. By atoning for his sins and breaking his addiction, Bush was able to recover the feeling of control and freedom that he had enjoyed as a young boy growing up in Midland, Texas.
Extending his narrative to the story of his country, Bush believed that American society could recapture the wholesome family values and small-town decency of yesteryear, by embracing a brand of compassionate conservatism. On the international front, he believed that oppressed people everywhere could enjoy the same kind of God-given rights—self-determination and freedom—if they could be emancipated from their oppressors. His redemptive story helped him justify, for better and for worse, a foreign war aimed at overthrowing a tyrant. In Dreams From My Father , Barack Obama told his own redemptive life story, tracking a move from enslavement to liberation.
Obama, of course, did not directly experience the horrors of slavery or the indignities of Jim Crow discrimination. Obama had already identified himself as a protagonist in this grand narrative by the time he married Michelle Robinson, at age What about Donald Trump? What is the narrative he has constructed in his own mind about how he came to be the person he is today? And can we find inspiration there for a compelling American story? Our narrative identities typically begin with our earliest memories of childhood. Rather than faithful reenactments of the past as it actually was, these distant memories are more like mythic renderings of what we imagine the world to have been.
For Obama, there is a sense of wonder but also confusion about his place in the world. Donald Trump grew up in a wealthy s family with a mother who was devoted to the children and a father who was devoted to work. All five Trump children—Donald was the fourth—enjoyed a family environment in which their parents loved them and loved each other. Instead, it is saturated with a sense of danger and a need for toughness: The world cannot be trusted. Fred Trump made a fortune building, owning, and managing apartment complexes in Queens and Brooklyn.
On weekends, he would occasionally take one or two of his children along to inspect buildings.
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You have to be tough. He trained his sons to be tough competitors, because his own experience taught him that if you were not vigilant and fierce, you would never survive in business. There were ex—drill sergeants all over the place.
Military school reinforced the strong work ethic and sense of discipline Trump had learned from his father. And it taught him how to deal with aggressive men, like his intimidating baseball coach, Theodore Dobias:. Trump has never forgotten the lesson he learned from his father and from his teachers at the academy: The world is a dangerous place. You have to be ready to fight. The same lesson was reinforced in the greatest tragedy that Trump has heretofore known—the death of his older brother at age Freddy Trump was never able to thrive in the competitive environment that his father created.
Alcoholism contributed to his early death. The greatest risk for the warrior is that he incites gratuitous violence in others, and brings it upon himself. Trump loves boxing and football, and once owned a professional football team.
In the opening segment of The Apprentice , he welcomes the television audience to a brutal Darwinian world:. The story here is not so much about making money. As president, Donald Trump promises, he would make America great again. They keep beating us. We have to beat them. Economic victory is one thing; starting and winning real wars is quite another. In some ways, Trump appears to be less prone to military action than certain other candidates.
He has strongly criticized George W. David Winter, a psychologist at the University of Michigan, analyzed U. And, as noted, his extroversion and narcissism suggest a willingness to take big risks—actions that history will remember.
Life Before Birth
Tough talk can sometimes prevent armed conflict, as when a potential adversary steps down in fear. But Trump has kept this same kind of story going throughout his life. Even now, as he approaches the age of 70, he is still the warrior. Going back to ancient times, victorious young combatants enjoyed the spoils of war—material bounty, beautiful women. Trump has always been a big winner there.
His life story in full tracks his strategic maneuvering in the s, his spectacular victories the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Trump Tower in the s, his defeats in the early s, his comeback later in that same decade, and the expansion of his brand and celebrity ever since. Throughout it all, he has remained the ferocious combatant who fights to win. But what broader purpose does winning the battle serve? What higher prize will victory secure? Here the story seems to go mute. You can listen all day to footage of Donald Trump on the campaign trail, you can read his books, you can watch his interviews—and you will rarely, if ever, witness his stepping back from the fray, coming home from the battlefront, to reflect upon the purpose of fighting to win—whether it is winning in his own life, or winning for America.
But his narrative seems thematically underdeveloped compared with those lived and projected by previous presidents, and by his competitors. Although his candidacy never caught fire, Marco Rubio told an inspiring story of upward mobility in the context of immigration and ethnic pluralism. Ted Cruz boasts his own Horatio Alger narrative, ideologically grounded in a profoundly conservative vision for America. Bernie Sanders channels a narrative of progressive liberal politics that Democrats trace back to the s, reflected both in his biography and in his policy positions.
To be sure, all of these candidates are fighters who want to win, and all want to make America great again. But their life stories tell Americans what they may be fighting for, and what winning might mean. And he must relish the prospect of another big win, as the potential GOP nominee.
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But what principles for governing can be drawn from a narrative such as his? What guidance can such a story provide after the election, once the more nebulous challenge of actually being the president of the United States begins? Nearly two centuries ago, President Andrew Jackson displayed many of the same psychological characteristics we see in Donald Trump—the extroversion and social dominance, the volatile temper, the shades of narcissism, the populist authoritarian appeal.
Jackson was, and remains, a controversial figure in American history. Nonetheless, it appears that Thomas Jefferson had it wrong when he characterized Jackson as completely unfit to be president, a dangerous man who choked on his own rage. His life story appealed to the common man because Jackson himself was a common man—one who rose from abject poverty and privation to the most exalted political position in the land.
Amid the early rumblings of Southern secession, Jackson mobilized Americans to believe in and work hard for the Union. The populism that his detractors feared would lead to mob rule instead connected common Americans to a higher calling—a sovereign unity of states committed to democracy. Who, really, is Donald Trump? I can discern little more than narcissistic motivations and a complementary personal narrative about winning at any cost.
It is as if Trump has invested so much of himself in developing and refining his socially dominant role that he has nothing left over to create a meaningful story for his life, or for the nation. It is always Donald Trump playing Donald Trump , fighting to win, but never knowing why. Five years ago, the flight vanished into the Indian Ocean. Officials on land know more about why than they dare to say. At a. The designator for Malaysia Airlines is MH. The flight number was Fariq Hamid, the first officer, was flying the airplane. He was 27 years old. This was a training flight for him, the last one; he would soon be fully certified.
His trainer was the pilot in command, a man named Zaharie Ahmad Shah, who at 53 was one of the most senior captains at Malaysia Airlines. In Malaysian style, he was known by his first name, Zaharie. He was married and had three adult children. He lived in a gated development. He owned two houses. In his first house he had installed an elaborate Microsoft flight simulator.
In his rambling screed against the soccer star, the president revealed a lot about his worldview. Finish the job! Be proud of the Flag that you wear. These words came from an elderly woman sitting behind me on a late-night flight from Los Angeles to Washington, D. The plane was dark and quiet. To hear more feature stories, see our full list or get the Audm iPhone app. I listened with morbid fascination, forming an image of the man in my head as they talked.
I imagined someone who had worked hard all his life in relative obscurity, someone with unfulfilled dreams—perhaps of the degree he never attained, the career he never pursued, the company he never started. Yet surveying the various panel discussions left me confused. It might even have helped. The United States may no longer be its old hegemonic self in the realm of geopolitics. There have been moments, these past few weeks, when their swagger has veered towards arrogance. In their second match, the team started seven fresh players, resting its brand names.
But an arrogant team would be unable to appreciate its own weakness, and tonight the team made self-aware tactical adjustments to compensate for its inferior component parts. Put differently, this team is brimming with idealism—it is, after all, a squad in pursuit of equality, as well as a title—but to beat France, the host nation and its near equal, it reverted to an uncharacteristic pragmatism.
Democrats who watched the second debate on Thursday probably thought their party had a good night. It did not, and they should worry. Their first worry is the weakness of former Vice President Joe Biden. Jesus is described as responding to the anger by asking whether it is easier to say that someone's sins are forgiven, or to tell the man to get up and walk. Mark and Luke state that Jesus was in a house at the time, and that the man had to be lowered through the roof by his friends due to the crowds blocking the door.
A similar cure is described in the Gospel of John as the Healing the paralytic at Bethesda [Jn ] and occurs at the Pool of Bethesda. In this cure Jesus also tells the man to take his mat and walk. The Cure of a bleeding woman miracle appears in Mark , Matthew and Luke , along with the miracle of the Daughter of Jairus. Jesus turned about and, when the woman came forward, said "Daughter, your faith has healed you, go in peace".
Healing the mother of Peter's wife. The Synoptics  describe Jesus as healing the mother-in-law of Simon Peter when he visited Simon's house in Capernaum , around the time of Jesus recruiting Simon as an Apostle Mark has it just after the calling of Simon, while Luke has it just before. The Synoptics imply that this led other people to seek out Jesus.
Jesus healing an infirm woman appears in Luke While teaching in a synagogue on a Sabbath, Jesus cured a woman who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years and could not stand straight at all. Healing a man with dropsy is described in Luke In this miracle, Jesus cured a man with dropsy at the house of a prominent Pharisee on the Sabbath. Jesus justified the cure by asking: "If one of you has a child or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull it out? In the Healing of the man with a withered hand miracle,  the Synoptics state that Jesus entered a synagogue on Sabbath , and found a man with a withered hand there, whom Jesus healed, having first challenged the people present to decide what was lawful for Sabbath— to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill.
The Gospel of Mark adds that this angered the Pharisees so much that they started to contemplate killing Jesus. The Healing the deaf mute of Decapolis miracle only appears in the Gospel of Mark. Specifically, Jesus first touched the man's ears, and touched his tongue after spitting, and then said Ephphatha!
The Healing of Malchus was Christ's final miracle before his resurrection. Jesus restored the ear by touching it with his hand. The Healing the Centurion's servant miracle is reported in Matthew and Luke John has a similar account at Capernaum, but states that it was the son of a royal official who was cured at a distance. Jesus healing in the land of Gennesaret appears in Matthew and Mark As Jesus passes through Gennesaret all those who touch his cloak are healed. Matthew also reports that after the miracle of Jesus exorcising a mute , Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.
According to the three Synoptic Gospels , Jesus performed many exorcisms of demoniacs. These incidents are not mentioned in the Gospel of John and appear to have been excluded due to theological considerations. The seven major exorcism accounts in the Synoptic Gospels which have details, and imply specific teachings, are:. All four canonical gospels describe the resurrection of Jesus ; three of them also relate a separate occasion on which Jesus calls a dead person back to life:. Accounts of Jesus performing miracles are also found outside the New Testament. Later, 2nd century texts, called Infancy Gospels , narrate Jesus performing miracles during his childhood.
Miracles performed by Jesus are mentioned in two sections of the Quran suras and in broad strokes with little detail or comment. Miracles were widely believed in around the time of Jesus. Gods and demigods such as Heracles better known by his Roman name, Hercules , Asclepius a Greek physician who became a god and Isis of Egypt all were thought to have healed the sick and overcome death i.
The first Gospels were written against this background of Hellenistic and Jewish belief in miracles and other wondrous acts as signs - the term is explicitly used in the Gospel of John to describe Jesus' miracles - seen to be validating the credentials of divine wise men. Many Christians believe Jesus' miracles were historical events and that his miraculous works were an important part of his life, attesting to his divinity and the Hypostatic union , i.
Christian authors also view the miracles of Jesus not merely as acts of power and omnipotence, but as works of love and mercy, performed not with a view to awe by omnipotence, but to show compassion for sinful and suffering humanity. Since according to the Gospel of John ,  it was impossible to narrate all of the miracles performed by Jesus, the Catholic Encyclopedia states that the miracles presented in the Gospels were selected for a twofold reason: first for the manifestation of God's glory, and then for their evidential value.
Jesus referred to his "works" as evidences of his mission and his divinity, and in John he declared that his miracles have greater evidential value than the testimony of John the Baptist. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father. In Christian teachings, the miracles were as much a vehicle for Jesus' message as his words.
Many emphasize the importance of faith, for instance in Cleansing ten lepers , [Lk ] Jesus did not say: "My power has saved you" but said:  . Similarly, in the Walking on Water miracle, Apostle Peter learns an important lesson about faith in that as his faith wavers, he begins to sink. Christian authors have discussed the miracles of Jesus at length and assigned specific motives to each miracle, e. And that the miracle was specifically designed by Jesus to teach the apostles that when encountering obstacles, they need to rely on their faith in Christ, first and foremost.
Authors Donahue and Harrington argue that the Daughter of Jairus miracle teaches that faith as embodied in the bleeding woman can exist in seemingly hopeless situations, and that through belief, healing can be achieved, in that when the woman is healed, Jesus tells her "Your faith has healed you". Liberal Christians place less emphasis on miraculous events associated with the life of Jesus than on his teachings. The effort to remove superstitious elements from Christian faith dates to intellectual reformist Christians such as Erasmus and the Deists in the 15th—17th centuries.
Attempts to account for miracles through scientific or rational explanation were mocked even at the turn of the 19th—20th century. Contemporary liberal Christians may prefer to read Jesus' miracles as metaphorical narratives for understanding the power of God. The Scottish philosopher David Hume published an influential essay on miracles in his An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding in which he argued that any evidence for miracles was outweighed by the possibility that those who described them were deceiving themselves or others:. Bart Ehrman states that what makes science possible is the assumption of the uniformity of the laws of nature, but given that miracles are by definition events that go against the usual way nature works, historians are virtually unable to confirm or refute reports of Jesus' miracles.
According to the Jesus Seminar Jesus probably cured some sick people,  but described Jesus' healings in modern terms, relating them to "psychosomatic maladies. Healing the deaf mute of Decapolis. Healing the blind at birth. Healing the Paralytic at Bethesda. The Blind Man of Bethsaida. The Blind man Bartimaeus in Jericho. Healing the Centurion's servant.
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Christ healing an infirm woman. The man with a withered hand. Cleansing a leper. Healing a man with dropsy. Healing the bleeding woman. Healing the paralytic at Capernaum. Healing in Gennesaret. Two blind men. A boy possessed by a demon. The Canaanite woman's daughter. The Gerasenes demonic. At the Synagogue in Capernaum. Christ exorcising at sunset. The blind and mute man.
Exorcising a mute. Young Man from Nain. Daughter of Jairus. Walking on water. Draught of fishes. Coin in the fish's mouth. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.