Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The power of manipulation

Like a drug, once tasted you find it harder to go without your fix. Knowing you can control someone, have power over them, influence their lives to such a degree. Better than sex (apparently).

I've seen men manipulate women into doing the stupidest most pathetic things, they just play on their insecurities, feed them the right lines, even tell them the dreaded ILY phrase just to have their way with them.

I've seen women turn intelligent, normally controlled men into gibbering wrecks, tongues lolling at the sight of a bit of leg or a revealing top, persaude men to hand over large wads of cash for all sorts of ridiculous pleasures.

I've seen impressionable students fall under the allure of a charismatic, dynamic teacher, following him into the unknown and beyond. Imagine being in the shoes of that leader having such control over your followers and you'll understand how easy it is to abuse that, how addictive and dangerous it can be.

I've seen politicians lie so often that if they tell you it is raining you have to go outside to check. They will hold on to their privileged position, beyond their time, just for another hit of this drug.

I've seen the dangers of this drug, can anyone point me to rehab?

TRK

51 Comments:

At 12/14/2005 6:10 AM, Blogger FrumGirl said...

Manipulators are the ultimate players, perhaps even sociopathic? ( I use that term lightly.) TRK, you really are an interesting mix of characteristics. But let me ask you a question... what do you do when someone recognizes the manipulation, allows themselves to be manipulated, and then turns the table around?

 
At 12/14/2005 6:15 AM, Blogger The Rabbi's Kid said...

FG,

I wasn't describing myself, merely what I have seen (though yes, I am an interesting mix). How do the manipulatees turn the tables? Give me an example.

 
At 12/14/2005 6:52 AM, Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

TRL: I think you descrobed 2 competely different situations, which may or may not be linked.

The first group is about sex (or love in a crush sense of the word). Manipulating people for sex to for the players to get something in return.

The second group are the charismatic overlords who delight in kingdoms of pawns. (Whether ot not they get sex out of it is a different issue).

Human nature makes group one very susceptible, since eye candy and the allure of the yetzer hara keep the procreation process moving ahead.

Group Two is for the much weaker individuals. Its not necessarily human nature to be a weak-minded follower, though there always seem to be more groupies and hassidim than there are leaders.

The worst cases are the mix of both; the sexual redators who are also leaders of the Jewish community or youth organizations.

 
At 12/14/2005 6:53 AM, Anonymous Chai said...

TRK, I think your last line was deceptive. By asking if anyone can point you to rehab, it sounded like you are the one addicted...

Also, you must remember that some people thrive on being manipulated, tho' they won't call it that. They need someone to tell them what to do, someone to make decisions for them - they can't (or at least feel that they can't) do it for themselves. Some people allow themselves to be victims.

 
At 12/14/2005 7:13 AM, Blogger FrumGirl said...

Chai basicly answered your question to me with your last line... by asking for rehab, it seems you are describing yourself. If not, I apologize for allowing you to manipulate me into thinking you were ;-)Or maybe... just maybe you secretly are describing yourself? Only you can answer that. As for an example... who knows? Maybe this very comment is an example. Too twisted... lets go back to talking about tzitzis, lol.

 
At 12/14/2005 7:21 AM, Blogger The Rabbi's Kid said...

Jameel, it's the same drug, the same basic weaknesses and insecurities that manipulators prey on.

Chai, maybe I am, who knows? What do you say about those people who allow themselves to be manipulated? That could well be the majority of us.

FG, I don't know. But there is no rehab for this addiction. It's not even recognized as one, yet it is so powerful and causes so much damage.

 
At 12/14/2005 7:21 AM, Blogger Masmida said...

To manipulate someone part of you has to see them as a object which reacts in certain ways.

But is all manipulation bad? After all education is the manipulation of another person's mind to allow to gain insight or knowledge.

If you've begun to manipulate its very hard to give up. Power, any sort Jameel, is addictive.

But there is a certain terror when you realize that someone's fate is resting in the palm of your hand.

Rehab? just be honest. just be honest. Say what you mean and mean what you say.

But i'm still working on that... its a long project

 
At 12/14/2005 7:28 AM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

We are all victims of manipulation "vehaya eim shamoah..." We are servants, slaves to Hashem and in turn we get health and rain and sustenance. Pirkei Avos talks about the ruling powers and how we should stay away from them, I have relatives in Rabbinate and in Government so I understand the drug, I see the way guys eyes glaze over when I tell them.

The rehab you ask? sit yourself down and read "Patach Eliyahu" (At the beginning of many sidurim before karbanot), kriat shema shel shacharit and then tehilim #75

 
At 12/14/2005 7:50 AM, Blogger Pragmatician said...

Where have I read this before?

 
At 12/14/2005 8:12 AM, Blogger The Rabbi's Kid said...

Masmidas, it is objectification but we all do it. education is manipulation for a good purpose, as opposed to the other examples. being honest isn't good enough, if your patterns of behaviour and your addiction overpower you.

LRH, I wish it were that simple - have I just lost faith?

Prag, no idea, you tell me

 
At 12/14/2005 8:37 AM, Blogger Mata Hari said...

ok...let me get this straight -- if someone is open and vulnerable (normal, human) and believes someone else when they say they love them, care for them, think they're great etc. -- this connotes being manipulated? why?
you seem to feel contempt for these women. i feel contempt for the guys who use lines they don't mean.

 
At 12/14/2005 8:54 AM, Anonymous advice said...

If we are on this subject, I have a relative whom the husband controls, basically she does not have a word at home, and every thing has to go precisely his way, more to that he constantly shouts at her if she does anything he does not like. As much as it pains the relatives around, we don’t know how to help her, any advice?

 
At 12/14/2005 8:59 AM, Blogger FrumGirl said...

I don't think this is the kind of manipulation TRK is talking about. That is pure abuse. Can't someone help her? She needs to get out.

 
At 12/14/2005 9:05 AM, Anonymous advice said...

I dont think the solution would be to get her out, as I think if she would just tell him or you treat me like you should or I get out, he would treat her ok. The problem is how to get this acrross.

 
At 12/14/2005 9:08 AM, Anonymous advice said...

As they are a couple, if someone will intervene they will probably end up being attacked by both of the couple, since to the outside they act like an happy couple.

 
At 12/14/2005 9:29 AM, Blogger Eshet Chayil said...

Hey, men can have the affect as women...And in this life we have leaders, followers, and those who stand aside. Which one are you?

 
At 12/14/2005 1:05 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Advice,
My father always told me stay out of fights between couples. You can only go wrong. There is a book called "How to be your own best friend" I gave it to a woman I know, she gained confidence and started taking better care of herself and smiled more.

Her marriage failed because her husband was cheating on her but that was not her fault, he took the easy way out instead of waiting for her to come around he did some coming around of his own.

 
At 12/14/2005 1:45 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Advice,
Also, when couples yell it sweetens the judgement between them. There are some men that are on a very high level of kedusha, and they are able to see people's aura noticing the darker spots where they sinned or senses the impurities on the other person. Now they can purify the other person by yelling at them, when he yells at her privately (not embarrassing her in public)he takes all her sins and if she is quiet and "takes" it she is rewarded with forgiveness and longevity. Only people on a very high level can understand this. Same goes for children who accept the yelling. A man who is a tzadik like that who goes to the mikveh and learns and practices everything he has learned has the power to sweeten the judgement even if it looks to an outsider as though he is an out of control maniac.

"Talmedie Chachamim marbim shalom baolam"

 
At 12/14/2005 2:14 PM, Anonymous chai said...

TRK, I wasn't refering to those who allow themselves to be manipulated - I do that every day - I mean those who NEED to be manipulated. Who are unable to think for themselves, to make their own decisions, and are happiest when they're done by others. Capisce?

 
At 12/14/2005 2:23 PM, Blogger Masmida said...

LRH-

Umm I guess I'm not on a high enough level, but in so far as I understand all of the halachot ben adam l'chavero not including the extra measures that are in place between husband and wife, yelling at someone and causing them pain is assur.

And if Ramban say that Yaakov was to harsh when he answered Rachel so that she should daven, there is no one in our generation who has that kind of sensitivty.

Kabbalah and auras are wonderful for those who live in the next world. But most of us occupy this one.

I agree with FG, that's abuse. But until one of the couple reaches outside there is almost nothing we can do. They are not in a position to be helped. Unless he's started becoming physically abusive, in which case give me a number and I'll call family services now.

 
At 12/14/2005 3:23 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Masmida,
Yes, only few are on the level to understand suffering in this world. One of the 10 harugei malchut, I forget which (I think R' Akiva) even asked to have moist cotton on his body so he burns more slowly to purify himself and he was a HUGE Tzadik. When a husband that loves his wife yells at her or their children it is because he loves them (I don't mean wacko abusive nut cases).

There was once a man who went to the Baal Shem Tov for healing, he was sick, and the BST
yelled at him to get out. The man was so upset he went out and sat on a bench broken hearted ready to die, he thought to himself, Is this the way "Rabbis" treat people? Out of desperation, he stopped a passerby and asked him to go in and ask the BST to please let him in so he can tell him what is wrong. The BST let him in and said you are not on the level to be cured by my yelling I have to treat you like the rest of the sick people, and he put him up and nursed him back to health over the following few months.

I forget who says "people don't die from hunger they die from pride"

I hope none of us are judged based on our egos, very few would pass that "Fear (of G-D) Factor"
Tehilim #130

 
At 12/14/2005 3:36 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

One more thing, Rabbis today (ok very few and mainly in Israel) have power of Beit Din. The Beit Din here has influence in the Beit Din Up there... to the extent that they can get people out of Karet (Chas Ve Shalom) It is REALLY SCARY!!!, that is why they don't let most girls learn this stuff, so they can sleep at night... (the other girls, it's because the guys are scared that the women might make them frum.

Joke: Rabbi tells his wife, "get outside we are collecting the the chametz for burning".
Rabbi's wife answers, "don't worry my father sold me to a Goy years ago"

Joke: Father tells his son on his way to college DON’T MARRY A SHIKSA!
1st year dates Jewish girls, second 1/2 Jewish 4th year he is engaged to a shiksa. They marry his wife wakes him up the morning after the wedding and yells at him get your tefilin go to shul! Friday night comes she unplugs the TV and has dinner served, The guy calls his dad hysterical "She makes me be frum!!!" Father replies "I told you not to marry a shiksa"

 
At 12/14/2005 3:43 PM, Blogger Masmida said...

Perhaps you mean that
R' Akiva is the one who as he was being tortured to death, said that now he knows that he's kept "... and you shall love the L-rd your G-d with all your soul" even if they take from you.

But when David HaMelech asked to be tested, well.... he was and he failed. There's no virtue in needless suffering.

You're right, sometimes people just lose it. That doesn't mean that they don't love their spouse and their children. But does mean that such outbursts are the exception not the rule and followed by sincere apologies.

None of us are the BST or R' Akiva and to emulate them in this respect would be a chutzpah. Someone has to be able to have perfect control over their speech and emotion before they can even consider such a move.

Ego is a flaw of mine, and one I will spend my life correcting.

But every moment that someone suffers when I can help, then I personally am cupable, and if that's an egotiscal statement, it makes no differenc to me if someone else makes the call.

but they teach you in First Aid class, that you always make it ONE persons responsiblity to call 911 or to get help b/c wildly appealing to the crowd, most people will assume that someone else will take care of it.

so i'll be the someone else

 
At 12/14/2005 4:47 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Masmida,
Wow! that's a level of le'shmoh you don't see often, I hope you like being lonely...

 
At 12/14/2005 4:58 PM, Blogger Margalit-L said...

Hey Rabbi's Kid...

I am new to the 'blogosphere' so am just having a look around. Found your blog, and have just read the ENTIRE lot, all since March! Very readable. Hope to be reading more soon.

~M-L~

 
At 12/14/2005 5:34 PM, Blogger Masmida said...

Watch it, LRH. you're starting to sound vindictive and just when I was starting to like you too.

 
At 12/14/2005 5:40 PM, Blogger Mata Hari said...

ok ok everyone...break it up...stop fighting

just to recap:
1)manipulating people for your own ends (whether male, female, students, followers)is a bad thing.
2)spouse abuse is a bad thing, but not the subject of this blog.
3)we'll all try to be better people

 
At 12/14/2005 8:25 PM, Blogger ClooJew said...

At the end of the day it's still "Bemakom she'adam rotzeh leileich"

 
At 12/15/2005 12:47 AM, Anonymous Chai said...

Hear Hear, MH!

 
At 12/15/2005 3:33 AM, Anonymous daat y said...

'can anyone point me to rehab.'-
that,s personal.yes.The first step is being aware there is a problem
.Being aware both in thought and feeling.Then you are way ahead of most people.

 
At 12/15/2005 3:51 AM, Blogger Mata Hari said...

cj - yes, that's true. but if we're gonna quote pisukim, there's also "lifnei iver..."

 
At 12/15/2005 5:22 AM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Masmida,

"Watch it, LRH. you're starting to sound vindictive and just when I was starting to like you too"

Is that a threat?

I'll have you know that I fear no one, there is a big "BAD" g-d that watches out for me every mill-second he has proven it to me personally on countless occasions it's not for no reason the I believe in him. My rock my redeemer.

Yes, being a believer has it's lonely moments but I walk the tight rope bridge alone "Kol Haolam kulo gesher tzar meod" I enjoy my solidity and solitude, it's not for everyone…

I am sorry to disappoint you, but it is not your "love" or anyone else’s that gets me out of bed in the morning.

 
At 12/15/2005 5:41 AM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Masmida,

"Kabbalah and auras are wonderful for those who live in the next world. But most of us occupy this one."

As wonderous and wonderful this world we are in is "Olam Hasheker" I pray and hope I make it, and am zoche to LIVE in the next world (the only world) it is the main goal and focus of my existence.

If need be, I will try to drag some guy up with me or G-D help me, I pray it be the other way around.

 
At 12/15/2005 6:43 AM, Blogger Masmida said...

was joking!!!

MH is right, this has gotten way off topic.

Do you want to post about this or should I and we can spare TRK and the rest of them our disagreements? or you can email me.

Whatever way you serve G-d, as long as its an actual derech in Torah is great,

but to quote Dr. Luchins

"It used to be that a frum Jew worried about everyone else's physical well-being and their own spirtual well-being. Today too many Jews are busy taking care of everyone's else spirtual well being and their own physical well-being"

 
At 12/15/2005 8:14 AM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

No problem, ;)

To quote Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai and David Hamelech (Chai Vekayam),

"Lecha Hashem Hagedulah VeHagevurah VeHativeret VeHanezach VeHahod... Lecha Hashem Hamamlacha VeHamitnaseh Lechol.."

 
At 12/15/2005 8:28 AM, Blogger EDS said...

Rehab?... the sex thing you mentioned in paragraph one, often helps to cure all...

That said, manipulation can also be a great source of entertainment when used correctly. Manipulation of a weaker person is a bad thing, but what about manipulation of a person on an equal playing field to achieve an advantage? Isn't that what the business world is based around in this country (obviously manipulation of the weak takes place in the business world as well, but is for some reason not as bad as personal manipulation).

That said, college girls (and law school girls) are dumb. They practically ask to be manipulated. I've seen it time and time again. Girl needs notes - BAM - she becomes a flirt. Guy gives her notes to get her to keep flirting, maybe more. Think about it - who manipulated who? They both got what they want.

Thanks for the interesting read...

 
At 12/15/2005 3:10 PM, Blogger FrumGirl said...

TRK Isnt it funny how the comments took this to an interesting place and its not about what you wrote at all anymore....

 
At 12/15/2005 3:55 PM, Anonymous spec said...

Religon, Rabbis, Love, anything conditional is a form of manipulation it takes the wise to see it and judge if it is for their best intrest or not.

 
At 12/15/2005 6:48 PM, Blogger A Frum Idealist said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 12/16/2005 4:28 AM, Blogger Mata Hari said...

eds - that sounds a wee bit harsh.

 
At 12/18/2005 7:47 AM, Blogger the graduate said...

LRH!
it was NOT RABI AKIVA(his skin was combed off with metal combes)it was rabi hanina ben tradyon.he did NOT ask for the wool to be put on,but for it to be taken OFF.for which he promisen the roman olam haba.pleases do us all a favour and check things out a little before you say them.also,suffering is a thing to avoid not to persue this is the jewish way.we suffer nontheless and for that we look for reasons.dont even think of offering your "kabalistic" justification for abuse,any kind of abuse is wrong.i have never seen any true holy men yell at their wives.

 
At 12/18/2005 2:35 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Thank you TG for the details, I was force fed so much of this stuff, most of it is all mixed up by now. I do believe that when someone yells at you they take all your sins. I have no problem if someone wants to yell at me (they can have them)I have plenty to go around... jk

 
At 12/19/2005 12:41 PM, Blogger the graduate said...

i dont know why you believe that.what are your sources?
it is clear that you believe in things that you have proved by completley reversing what the gemara was trying to say.just because you like an idea and maybe you heard it from a rabbi does not mean it is true.sad but true.

p.s
im not trying to insult you in any way.

 
At 12/19/2005 6:09 PM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

I never learned the Gemarah. Please, tell me where to look it up.

P.S. None taken, it's just a blog silly ;)

 
At 12/20/2005 2:43 AM, Blogger the graduate said...

avoda zara 18a

 
At 12/21/2005 7:31 AM, Blogger Littleredridinghoodie said...

Thank you TG,
Ironic, but I will look it up b"n.

 
At 3/30/2007 9:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about the power of persuasion?

 
At 8/22/2010 8:53 PM, Anonymous Peace1uis said...

So what about the power of manipulation for good

 
At 12/07/2010 5:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i couldnt help but notice this i mean i was trying to find out more bout manipulators as i am one and ive known i am one from a long tym and i still dont know evrything i can do but i have managed to surprise myself in how well i can manipulate but really i still dont know y or how i became a manipulator seeing as i failed english and all that i mean really i dnt jst know how to manipulate for sex but i can manipulate for many more things and it scary for me to realise wat i can manipulate for and im trying to find out more about wat i can do so can any1 help me??

and yes manipulating is lyk a drug i first found out wat i was doing when a close family friend told me and grouped me as a manipulator and then one of the phsyciatrists i used to see did the same so yer

but basically i dont know wat exactly i can do but it is addicting and my gf starting to get anoyed with me haha oops ^^

 
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At 5/17/2013 10:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

im concerned about my daughtet she is a manipulater she never use to be that way untill she met her late husband the whole famoly believe he manipulated for some reason he would make a person believe it was 100 degrees outside and snowing at the same time he manipulated my daughter to think that him being with another woman was for their purpose now she is the same way her late husband manipulated my daughtet to believe that i was evil 10 years ago and she still believe this to today now she manipulates her children against me the oldest one knows better now tht she has grown but im afraid for the little ones now the oldest son is taken by her manipulation really serious wht can i do

 

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