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Both world history and everyday life are full of examples of people acting ruthlessly, maliciously, or selfishly. In psychology as well as in everyday language, we have diverse names for the various dark tendencies human may have, most prominently psychopathy (lack of empathy), narcissism (excessive self-absorption), and Machiavellianism (the belief that the ends justify the means), the so-called ‘dark triad’, along with many others such as egoism, sadism, or spitefulness.

Although at first glance there appear to be noteworthy differences between these traits – and it may seem more ‘acceptable’ to be an egoist than a psychopath – new research shows that all dark aspects of human personality are very closely linked and are based on the same tendency. That is, most dark traits can be understood as flavoured manifestations of a single common underlying disposition: The dark core of personality. In practice, this implies that if you have a tendency to show one of these dark personality traits, you are also more likely to have a strong tendency to display one or more of the others.

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As the new research reveals, the common denominator of all dark traits, the D-factor, can be defined as the general tendency to maximize one’s individual utility and disregarding, accepting, or malevolently provoking disutility for others, while accompanied by beliefs that serve as justifications. In other words, all dark traits can be traced back to the general tendency of placing one’s own goals and interests over those of others even to the extent of taking pleasure in hurting other’s – along with a host of beliefs that serve as justifications and thus prevent feelings of guilt, shame, or the like. (1)

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Darkness is always the result of darkness.

But you can never have darkness without a tiny speck of light.

A light pointing towards the path we need to take.

While we walk away into the abyss. The Sun still shining.

All the shadows are the same.

Do not be afraid of them.

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Doing nothing. Being electrocuted. We prefer the latter!

For there are no shadows.

It is just you.

Blocking the light…

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