Narcissistic people are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories
As our friends from the Croatian Bug note, the connection between narcissism and an attachment to the assumption that conspiracy theories are true has already been proven in the scientific study that has been conducted in the field of psychology. At this point, at least three studies have established a connection between this personality feature and a belief in pseudoscience. These pseudoscientific notions can range from a belief in a flat Earth to numerous medical “theories” relating to the pandemic spread of the coronavirus. Researchers from the University of Kent, Cambridge, and the Polish Academy of Sciences investigated the reasons why exactly people with narcissistic personality traits are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories. Narcissism has become a very good predictor of a person’s likelihood of believing such conspiracy stories. Recent findings from their investigation were presented in a paper that was published in the journal Science Direct (Current Opinion in Psychology).
Scientists have divided the personality trait of narcissism into three subtypes: antagonism, extroversion, and neuroticism. They hypothesize that each of these subtypes may contribute to an individual’s propensity to believe in conspiracy theories owing to a distinct set of psychological processes. They discovered that fundamental psychological mechanisms, such as paranoia, gullibility, the urge for dominance and control, and a sense of uniqueness or specialness, all play a part in everything. People who believe in conspiracy theories are more likely to believe that others have conspired against them and have evil intentions. They also have a tendency to blame others for their failures, which is something that conspiracy theories fully enable them to do – to place all of the blame for their failure on “those others” in positions of power who create global conspiracies and manipulate humanity. People who believe in conspiracy theories are more likely to believe that others have conspired against them and have evil intentions.
It has also been found that narcissism is evident in those who were part of organizations that were obsessed with such notions. People who belong to these organizations are given priority, and as a result, they get the impression that they are part of a significant “club” that is the only one in the world to have access to the restricted information; thus, this makes them feel like they are unique.
There is a strong connection between the craving for this emotion and narcissism, but conspiracy theories also share this connection. Previous studies have also demonstrated that individuals who hold such beliefs are more likely to be credulous, which in turn makes them more likely to be actively involved in the propagation of a variety of different conspiracy theories.
Research has demonstrated that collective narcissism is a component, in addition to individual narcissism, that predicts how likely someone is to be interested in conspiracy theories. Individual narcissism is also a factor. This syndrome, which is connected, for example, to beliefs in conspiracies involving the COVID-19 vaccine or climate change, causes individuals to believe that their entire group is extraordinary and needs special care.
In conclusion, the authors of the article that was cited argue that the repercussions of their results are also highly significant for political life. People who are narcissistic run for office more frequently and are more prevalent among high-ranking politicians. As a result, it is reasonable to anticipate that an increasing number of rulers will become involved in various conspiracy theories, particularly during election season, which contributes to the power and influence that these theories have. Finally, the writers voice their concerns on this topic, citing the fact that certain conspiracy theories might be extremely detrimental to society.