Psychological Projection and the Mirror Effect

Recently, I came across an older post from Red Pill Girl, entitled Project Much? (January 21, 2016) The post was about how women subconsciously presume that other people, i.e. men, have the same thoughts, values and motivations that they do, and how this psychological phenomenon, termed Projection, assassinates much of their socio-sexual potential.

In this post, we explore the mechanics of psychological Projection, along with five common examples, including Red Pill Girl’s original topic in greater depth.

  1. Selfishness
  2. Greed, Stinginess
  3. The Envy/Jealousy Game
  4. Buyers Remorse or Auto-Rejection
  5. A Woman’s False Projection onto Beta Male Orbiters

A Description of Psychological Projection

Psychological Projection is a defense mechanism people subconsciously employ in order to cope with difficult feelings or emotions [1]. Rather than admitting to, or dealing with, the unwanted feelings, Psychological Projection attributes other people to be the source of the undesirable feelings or emotions. Thus, in the eyes of the Projector, the subjective experience of the outer world is colored with the Projector’s inner problems which the Projector refuses to face [2].

Projection, as experienced from the Projector’s viewpoint, is called the Mirror Effect, and is based on the following scripture.

1st Corinthians 13:12 (NKJV)

“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.”

[Eds. note 1: In this post, the Mirror Effect is similar to Law 44 of The 48 Laws of Power, by Robert Greene [3]. However, in the case of Psychological Projection, the Mirror Effect is NOT an effect intended or created by others, but is merely a chimera perceived by the one Projecting – viz. a hell of one’s own subconscious making.]

[Eds. note 2: The Mirror Effect is not to be confused with the action of Mirroring (when one person subconsciously imitates the gestures, speech pattern, or attitude of another, as an expression of rapport), or the Mirror Stage (described by Dr. J. M. E. Lacan as the formation of the ego through the process of identification). These are all very different concepts.]

As this word mirror implies, the things that come out of a person’s mouth indicate how that person views the world, and is therefore an expression of what lies within their heart. There are several verses in scripture which support this take.

Matthew 12:34 (NKJV)

“Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”

Matthew 15:18-19 (NKJV)

18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart, and they defile a man. 19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies.”

Luke 6:45 (NKJV)

“A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.”

That is Projection!

Newman, Duff, and Baumeister [4] proposed a model of defensive Projection. In this view, repressors try to suppress thoughts of their undesirable traits, and these efforts make those trait categories highly accessible, so that they are then adopted when forming impressions of others. This psychological Projection is thus a by-product of the deeper defensive mechanism. Also, people mistakenly believe that the traits they Project onto others, are really the true characteristics of others. Or in other words, people who are constantly dishing out a heavy dose of Projection are in a state of denial. They are denying that those traits are truly their own, and not those of the person being addressed.

Thus, Projectors are subconsciously unwilling or unable to entertain the possibility that they are the ones who have the very same characteristics which they condemn others for. It is somehow easier for them to shift the blame onto everyone else and continue on in their pathological ways, rather than to take responsibility for changing their own cognitive processes and system of beliefs (viz. repent of their sin).

Practical Applications

There are two useful applications of this knowledge. The first is to improve yourself, and the second is to assess others more accurately. These are discussed as follows.

A person would be wise to apply the Mirror Effect towards his own edification by considering the unpleasant and negative images that he commonly attributes to others, and questioning whether the proliferation of such images might be the result of his own psychological Projection. If so, then a change of heart and mind is in order. Relationships and conversations with mature, insightful, trusted people can be profitable to this end – the ‘iron sharpens iron’ thing.

Guys and girls alike would be wise to gauge ‘what proceeds out of the mouth’ of the people around them, and especially their love interest(s), in terms of the Mirror Effect. It may tell you what lies within their heart by revealing the issues they are unable to face. However, it is typically useless to point this out to the person, because Projection occurs on the meta-conscious level. If the person sticks to their guns when being confronted with their Projective behavior, then it only creates an offense and fosters distrust and recalcitrance. However, if a very strong, intimate relationship of trust is well established, then a confrontation may prove to be more constructive. In such a case, if the person can hear the deeper message, and receive the truth which motivates the provocation, then you have won a brother (or sister).

Now, on to the five examples.

Example 1: Selfishness

If a Projecting person is calling you selfish because you are failing to fulfill their expectations of what you should be giving to them (e.g. attention, commitment, gifts, sex, or any other benefits), then the chances are good that it is this person who is the one who is truly selfish, and not you. But from their perspective, they believe that you are the one who is selfish, because you are unwilling to cater to their selfish interests.

That person is experiencing the Mirror Effect.

Example 2: Greed, Stinginess

A true, anecdotal example of how the mirror effect traps one within a stronghold of failure and rejection is given in a previous post, The Perspectives of the “Thrifty” (or Stingy) (2009/9/21). In this story, a young lady who has the reputation of a penny pincher exacts monetary compensation from her friends to such a detailed extent, that her friends grow to resent treating her any favors, and therefore withhold the least bit of generosity towards her. So, as she continues to believe that all other people are stingy, it truly becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Her sinful attitude of greed rubs off onto all those around her, and none of them care enough to set her straight.

Example 3: The Envy/Jealousy Game

One peculiarity of the female sex is that they are strongly attracted to men who are married, or who are highly popular with many other women. One theory suggests that this is because this is a quick, easy way to vet the quality of a particular man. “If lots of other women think he’s great, then he must be great!”, which is further evidence supporting the claim that women operate with a Pack Mentality. Women often Project this mentality onto men, thinking that if they display to the man that she has many other sexual market options and love interests at her ready access, then he will become jealous of her, recognize her to have a greater SMV, and have a greater desire for her, all in one fell swoop. Unfortunately for these women, this idea could not be any further from the truth. The truth is, men are very ‘territorial’ about women (i.e. those with whom they are serious about forming a LTR), and are immediately repulsed by any women who gives off even the slightest whiff of taking relationship loyalty too casually, or of ever having rode the carousel in the past. Worse, contrary to women’s imaginings, men have a very tight-ass specification of what defines a slut, and for good reasons.

Example 4: Buyers Remorse or Auto-Rejection

If the girl you are dating frequently talks about how you are much better than what she deserves, or how it would be easy for you to find someone else who is better than her, then you might ask, “Why is she thinking about this???” Well, the chances are, she may fall into one of these three categories.

  1. She has Buyers Remorse, and is considering trading you in for another opportunity. That is, if a woman Feelz like she has ‘settled’ for you, or if she has been Alpha Widowed, she will lack the emotional bonding necessary to desire you wholeheartedly, and will feel remorseful about being with you, instead of with her old flame.
  2. She is planning to Auto-Reject herself. That is, she thinks you are either (1) way out of her league, or (2) not serious about her, or (3) both, and she wants to dump you (when she feels the time is right), so that she can avoid the possibility of being dumped by you first, which would leave her ashamed and heart broken. Women also launch this pre-emptive strike in order to avoid any shame, guilt, insecurities, or feelings of inadequacy that your relationship may pose to her.
  3. It is possible for a woman to have both Buyers Remorse and Auto-Rejection going on at the same time. In this case, she truly thinks you’re the perfect catch, but she feels there is something that doesn’t quite stack up to whatever expectation she might have (probably the Feelz at work again). If she’s too young, she might also have the greener pastures idea. Women are complicated, right?
  4. [There is a fourth reason, which is not related to Projection. She might simply be wagging her tongue and shit testing you with lies.]

So again, here we see that her words (saying that you deserve someone better) are not an accurate indicator of the inherent reality of your worth. The reality is that she is thinking that she deserves someone better (in the case of Buyers Remorse), or someone who doesn’t pressure her out of her comfort zone (in the case of Auto-Rejection).

Example 5: A Woman’s False Projection onto Beta Male Orbiters

In the aforementioned post, Red Pill Girl describes how women often produce a false Projection in order to reap desired benefits from Beta male orbiters. Here, it is interesting to find that even though the Projection is false, many women will still have the notion that it is true! Although women who have honest friends and a lot of relationship experience are more likely to realize it is false. Key excerpts cited from Notes from a Red Pill Girl follow. [Emphases mine.]

“If they are honest with themselves, women often operate a so-called beta orbiter network. These beta orbiters are within the “let’s just be friends” zone, but girls will often pretend that maybe she likes him or could like him to get him to do boyfriend-like things for her (like take her out when she doesn’t have a “real” date or provide boyfriend-like emotional support.)”

“Sometimes (or depending on the girl, often) she’ll string them along with romantic gestures or some physical intimacy in order to gain favors or keep him on the hook as part of her “backup plan.” (Note, I am not saying it is good or fair to the guy. It’s not. At the same time it’s just something females do for some reason, so one has to conscientiously NOT do it. I suspect it is a subconscious safety thing, but again it’s just as unfair to do to a guy as it is for a guy to string a gal along.)”

“In turn, the Beta orbiters may be Projecting as well, believing that “if she talks to him she likes him” holds true for women, too.”

“As mentioned in the first linked post, women obsessing about whether a guy will leave her after he’s made a commitment, or if he really likes her or not, is a reflection of the fact that often women can, and will, leave a guy if a better one comes along, or string a guy they don’t like romantically along in that very way.”

In another post, Beta Orbiters from the Gal Side (March 22, 2017), Red Pill Girl outlines the psychological perspectives of a female caught up in trapping orbiters, and missing REAL opportunities in doing so. [Emphases mine.]

“She really wants the Alpha, but he won’t fully commit to her (and maybe for good reason!) This leaves her feeling unsafe. So she keeps the beta orbiter close by, in case Alpha bails. Beta orbiter is a real steady Eddie, willing to watch her kids, pay for their dance lessons, pay her bills, the works. Before the unplanned (or was it?) pregnancy with Alpha, I highly advocated she forget Alpha and go for the beta orbiter, who I believe is a far better bet if what she needs is a family man. He’s actually far better looking, far more interesting and intelligent, and so on as well. The better “catch” imho, except despite me advising him not to be, he’s just too darn available! And that turns her off.”

She’s pregnant?!? Here, I can’t help but wonder, is she sleeping with both guys? Sheesh… And now a child comes into this mess? OMG!

“Meanwhile the Alpha remains just out of reach. He’s told her he would marry her and take care of her in a minute, IF she knocks off the beta orbiter thing and adopts HIS frame. But she isn’t sure… will he? Can she trust him? After all, he’s got “options” and has shown he’s willing to walk if needed. (Ironically this is exactly what draws her in, if he was too available, he’d be a Beta orbiter in her mind, and she’d likely seek another Alpha. Complex, I know!)”

Since men usually mean what they say, it seems that Alpha is not so ‘out of reach’ as she fears.

“And so it goes round and round. I suggested she completely cut off contact with the beta orbiter, because he undermines her relationship with the Alpha and is a BIG reason things aren’t progressing to a commitment. She really needs to choose. And to PROVE herself worthy of commitment!

Sorry to be crass, but she should have ‘proved herself’ 15 years ago, and then her life could have followed a more satisfying trajectory for both her, and her husband and child. Also, it’s very bad advice for the Alpha to ‘man up and marry’ that two-timing monkey swinger, because that would remove the opportunity for her to grow in faith – something which is absolutely necessary for her to become a worthy wife.

“She saw the sense in all this, when I explained the concepts. I truly believe she herself does not understand how her feminine imperative is pushing her to do things that are not helping, but actually hurting her chances of success. One must recognize the self-sabotage hypergamy can cause, and why women play these games, to overcome them.”

She knows it! But she’s too comfortable running cruise-control on auto-pilot, and so she won’t instigate any changes in her life. Thus, the Female Imperative (viz. the feral nature of the ‘flesh’) remains in the drivers seat, going full speed ahead towards a collision.

Analysis and Discussion

As Red Pill Girl pointed out, there are some grave consequences from languishing in fear and doubtful indecision, and failing to trust and have faith. So why do women do this?

Well first, there is a plethora of Blue Pill advice all over the Sinternet, condoning women to play the field – advice which is redundant, because women do this naturally, without any prompting. A supercharged paradigm of this same advice, which also exemplifies the appropriate constitutive elements of Projection, can be found in the Huffington Post article, The Male String Theory of Dating (and I hope the Huffies don’t follow the pingback). [Eds. note 3: You’ve got to check this one out to believe the incredible, dimension-warping, light-speed Hamster spin!]

Second are the reasons obvious to Red Pilled men, which women may or may not be consciously aware of. Women retain the orbiters for any of the following reasons.

  • Gifts, money, and material resources (Beta Bux).
  • Women thrive on ego stoking attention from men.
  • A source of Relationship Contingent Self-Esteem.
  • Social affirmation – I’ve had a hard time finding a source reference on this, but I have the gut feeling (based on my experiences) that women who have men on the strings are higher up the female pecking order. As such, the Hamster reasons that having several men in hot pursuit is an affirmation of a woman’s higher SSMV among her peers.
  • The Endless Courtship Fantasy of always being a princess who is highly desired above all others, and relentlessly fought for in wars and duels. To support this fantasy, it is necessary for women to perceive the imminent security of having a back-up man, which is rooted in the perception of getting a reliable commitment from ‘anyone’, if not ‘someone’ in particular. Again, the goal here is to maintain the mythos that she is one desired.
  • Having a pawn to play in the Envy (Jealousy) Game, which is another embodiment of female Projection, as discussed in Example 3 above. Chateau Heartiste is rife with entertaining examples.
  • Having the luxury of choice.
  • The overall contentedness of indulging their hypergamous nature.

It should be noted that all these things are based on the latent feral nature, or the ‘weakness of the flesh’ as described in the Bible. We are warned about these from scripture. [Emphases mine to show the striking correllations.]

Galatians 5:16-26 (NKJV)

16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.”

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”

Moreover, as long as a person chases after the fulfillment of the flesh, they are doomed to the inherent consequences. (The main reason these things are mentioned in the Bible is because God intends to give us fair warning about the life-hazards that are not obviously discerned through the natural senses.) Such lessons in life cannot be escaped, and sadly, the rewards for being spiritually obedient wane exponentially as life drags on.

To make matters worse, not only do they make their lives more difficult and frustrating over the long run, they also don’t enter into the Kingdom of God (ibid. v. 21). Thus, the choice to retain an orbiter back-up is appealing, but the fruit is lethally poisoned because they miss the chance to enter into an experience which I’ll call, ‘redemption mode’. There are some deeply hidden reasons for why this is so.

  • She avoids the challenges associated with moving past the limitations of her hypergamous nature, and then developing and exercising faith*, which is of eternal benefit to her soul.
  • She bypasses the suffering which is a fundamental element in the development of her strength of character, which is of supreme value, not only to herself, but also to any man she may form a relationship with.
  • She fails to embrace the opportunity to mature. Maturity is known to be one of the most endearing and irresistible qualities a woman can have, as it is a major cofactor in happy, successful marriages.

So she is not only on a crash course with disappointment and regret, she is also running away from God and salvation. Somebody please wake her up!

Conclusions

In total, the practice of keeping a Beta Orbiter at bay is a subtle, but greatly damaging sin that most women are not aware of. Indulging in the relative safety of harboring orbiters is a deceptive comfort zone. Instead of garnering orbiters, a woman should draw some boundaries to keep her suitors at a socially safe distance until she is ready to choose one, and then make a clear decision in the matter.

* It’s difficult to explain this spiritual phenomena in only a few words, but the following series of posts describing the story of my own faith journey might help illustrate the process.

  1. A Spiritual Death (December 8, 2009)
  2. Growing “Roots” in Faith (December 12, 2009)
  3. God’s Silence During Suffering (December 14, 2009)
  4. Understanding Temptation (December 21, 2009)

References

  1. Lifescript: Psychological Projection: Dealing With Undesirable Emotions
  2. F. Baumeister, F. Roy, K. Dale, K. L. Sommer, “Freudian Defense Mechanisms and Empirical Findings in Modern Social Psychology: Reaction Formation, Projection, Displacement, Undoing, Isolation, Sublimation, and Denial” Journal of Personality 66(6):1090–92 (1998). doi:10.1111/1467-6494.00043.
  3. Robert Greene, The 48 Laws of Power. New York, NY. (2000) p. 452.
  4. S. Newman, K. J. Duff, R. F. Baumeister, “A new look at defensive projection: Thought suppression, accessibility, and biased person perception”, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 72(5):980–1001 (1997). doi:10.1037/0022-3514.72.5.980. PMID 9150580

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About Wayne

Wayne is an ordained minister of Love who studies the psychology of the Feminine Mystique during the day, and holds an undercover missionary position at night. He earned his Ph.D. in Transcendental Love Mechanics during a 12-year, self-imposed asylum in an east-Asian paradise. You can visit his solid blog for more liquid insights: Sigma Frame Where Frame is the Name of the Game!
This entry was posted in Authenticity, Discerning Lies and Deception, Disorders, Maturity, Personal Growth and Development, Models of Failure, Psychology, Relationships and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to Psychological Projection and the Mirror Effect

  1. Thanks for the ping backs! I would agree w you fully that the situation of my former neighbor described in “Beta Orbiters from the Gal Side” is a complete train wreck. :/ And no surprise remains a train wreck to this day.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Farm Boy says:

    My ex accused me of doing exactly what she was doing. It was so obvious that her friends and relatives backed me. So if you are going to project, try to not make it obvious. Though it would be better to not do so

    Liked by 4 people

  3. earl says:

    Projection is something that should be in the forefront of people’s minds when accusations comes out of their mouth. It is amazing though how a lot of people think it is perfectly okay to believe any accusation a woman says without any real proof though.

    Much like the parable of the tax collector and the Pharisee…If a person has a healthy self-awareness, they shouldn’t project much. If a person has delusions of grandeur, look out.

    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+18:9-14

    Liked by 2 people

  4. earl says:

    ‘In total, the practice of keeping a Beta Orbiter at bay is a subtle, but greatly damaging sin that most women are not aware of. Indulging in the relative safety of harboring orbiters is a deceptive comfort zone. Instead of garnering orbiters, a woman should draw some boundaries to keep her suitors at a socially safe distance until she is ready to choose one, and then make a clear decision in the matter.’

    It’s probably a two fold problem. Women who like the comfort of beta orbiters and men who are too scared to clearly state their intentions going into the orbiter mode hoping she catches the right feelings.

    The best thing a man can do to not become an orbiter…is clearly state his intentions. If he wants to go out with her, ask and let the chips fall where they may. I’d rather be rejected by a lady and know where I stand rather than play the game of ‘I hope she catches feelings in the future if I play the emotional tampon’.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Sigma Frame says:

      Certainly, the seemingly inocuous, ‘silent’ presence of the orbiter serves as an enabler, and thus, an indirect participant in the sin. Orbiters also absorb some of the negative consequences as well. Don’t be one!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sigma Frame says:

      Yeah Earl, any kind of name calling is a STRONG suspect for projection. Thanks for sharing that. There are a lot of examples like that in Hollywood and Politics.
      Today, I thought of another one. I’ve seen a lot of people quote the line, “Haters gonna hate!” on social media, but typically, I see no foundation of ill will on behalf of the target of this statement. Assuming projection is the motivation for such a statement, we can surmise that these people probably experienced a shame trigger by what they saw.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Ame says:

    you’ve packed a lot in here.

    my first husband did this all the time. his parents also do this. 😦

    Like

  6. Boxer says:

    You ever read any Lacan? When you started talking about mirrors, I expected a citation; but, was more than impressed by the clarity of your thought regardless.

    I think you and I often say the same thing, to different target audiences. You usually deliver the message better than I would (or could), and I love it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sigma Frame says:

      Thanks, bud!
      I only took a couple courses in psychology, and i found it to be pretty dry. But my roommate in college liked to psychoanalyze people who got on his ‘sh*t list’. I found it both insightful and entertaining.
      In this post, the ‘mirror effect’ is not to be confused with ‘mirroring’ or the ‘mirror stage’. They are very different concepts. I should state this in the intro.
      It takes a lot of time, thought, study and research to write a good article. I collect ideas, quotes and references for days, and sometimes years. When I amass a sizeable body of applied information, I write it up. I try to be as comprehensive as possible, by combining science, scripture, culture and artful expression. My weakness is in politics though. I don’t have much respect for politics.
      Yes, I noticed we have different audiences, but our analysis is similar. Truth is truth, no matter how you look at it.

      Like

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