Principle III: Internal Locus of Control

In the 1950s, an academic named Julian Rotter developed the concept of locus of control, which refers to how much power a person has over her environment. A person with an internal locus of control believes that she can influence the world around her through hard work and mastery of skill. On the other hand, a person with an external locus of control perceives life as a roll of the dice, a game of chance. If bad things or good things happen to him, he claims it was due to external factors. For him, when the storms of life occur, there’s nothing that he can do about it. Unsurprisingly, studies have shown that people with internal loci of control are happier and lead more fulfilling lives.

While the orthodoxy slayer believes that they have power to influence their environment, locus of control isn’t the focus of this post. Locus of identity is a parallel concept to locus of control, but instead of referring to the amount of control that a person has over his circumstances, it refers to how much control a person has over his identity. Identity is a multi-factorial, labyrinthine concept that incorporates culture, religion, parental influence and life experiences of a person’s formative years. Many people are enslaved, or at least feel enslaved, by these early experiences and don’t continue to develop intellectually, emotionally or spiritually. The healthy change agent is able to mold their identity into a compass that leads to new experiences and growth. This person’s identity is dynamic, while a person with an external locus suffers from a static identity.

Tribalism is a terrible thing. It’s an evolutionary remnant of hunter-gatherer mentality, where the collective safety of the tribe depended on the individual members’ dedication to the tribe’s common interest. Tribalism can be relatively harmless: a sports rivalry or a friendly competition between different departments in an organization. This harmless cousin of more radical forms of tribalism is like a playful dust devil; it amuses without causing any real harm. Militant tribalism, on the other hand, is a huge component of orthodoxy and societal stagnation. It traps people into retarded, complacent identities. It is a snarling, vicious monster that neuters peoples’ ability to think critically and exponentially increases their capacity for believing lies that serve the tribe’s selfish interests. Tribalism is the EF-5 tornado of the mind.

The orthodoxy slayer must strive to be honest about his own biases and faithfully attempt to mitigate them appropriately. A large reason for the importance of internal loci of identity in the fight against tribalism is that people with no control over their own identity effectively surrender their sense of self over to others. These people get sucked up into the tribalism tornado and many are powerless to stop it. Their identity is largely based on tribal affiliation, therefore the tribe’s destiny, values and mission override individuals’ unique identities. The tribe is an army and, content to adopt the tribe’s identity as a substitute for their own, those with external loci of identity join the force. But the orthodoxy slayer’s internal locus of identity allows her to become a one woman legion. Her purpose comes from within.

Philosophically speaking, the internal locus of identity is a very Satanic concept. Satanists don’t believe in a supernatural entity that should be exalted. Instead, the Satanist exalts himself or herself as their own god. In doing so, they place themselves at the center of their universe and are empowered to work towards personal mastery over that domain. While there’s no theological aspect of internal locus of identity, a person with that type of locus is in control of their own destiny. They can grow and develop emotionally, intellectually and spiritually according to their own will, and are not bound by any limitations set by external tribes. The orthodoxy slayer is a one-man army. He does not need a tribe to leech off of, because he is in control of who he is.

The orthodoxy slayer is accountable for her life. When bad things happen to her, she owns it. When she’s blessed with good fortune, she enjoys it. She doesn’t blame others for her struggles; she doesn’t make excuses for her achievements. Her identity is not derived from an external directive such as a religion, political group or other organization. Instead, her identity is self-generated and self-regulated. Through diligent study of the world around her, she takes in information and conducts her own internal synthesis of the facts. Based on this analysis, she chooses who she is, what she is going to be and how she is going to get there. She doesn’t need the approval of a significant other, a priest, a friend or a parent. The only person she needs approval from to decide what her identity will be is her.

The orthodoxy slayer is her own master. She weathers the storm, time after time, and doesn’t blame anyone for its destruction because she knows that the storm is indifferent. It’s up to her to decide how to weather it.