mental firmware

The Instinctual Process

I want to thank you if you’ve made it through the first part of this series and you stuck with it. In some respects I can see why it might be odd that I’m covering cognitive processes, however, these are really the foundational premises for so many other Red Pill intersexual dynamics, as well as interpersonal and even social dynamics between humans that they deserve some sort of fleshing out. Again, I want to stress that these cognitive processing models are ideas I’m coming to and not settled science. However, they are based on both classic interpretations combined with the benefit of what we know about the biological, evolutionary and anthropological aspects of the cognitive processes today.

If you made the connection to Freud’s components of personality models – the Id, Ego and Super Ego – in the last post you at least grasp something of the initial theory I’m building on here. Useful as they are, Freud’s models lacked anything like an understanding of how the human mind works or how it evolved to the degree we take for granted today. Freud made his best guess at these processes from an inner psyche perspective. He formed his theories from what he deduced was operating inside our heads. My belief is that his (and others’) cognitive process models evolved and developed in response to interpreting our environment and the stimuli that our senses translated to them in our formative evolutionary past. Really, all of these interpretive processes, Instinct, Emotion and Reason, are the result of our experiential lives and the many benefits they provided us in surviving and reproducing.

All of that is not to discount the internal psyche and how these processes define who we are. Freud’s model proposed the Id, Ego and Superego are components of personality, what I’m proposing is that these components are the result of evolved cognitive processes – Instinct, Emotion and Reason – that served to create these inner models which later became those components of personality. I should say that I’m not entirely sold on these Freudian components, but I can see how cognitive processes would’ve led to developing them. I propose that these components of personality, Freud’s or other’s, are the products of these interpretive processes.

The Ego is a result of the Rational (Reason) process, while the Superego is a summation of the Emotional process. Since I don’t want to veer off into the psychology lesson in all this I’ll leave this proposition for another essay, but I do want to make a distinction here; What I’m proposing in this series is that our evolved interpretive processes are the means by which we interpret our reality, which in turn shapes who we are individually, socially and sexually.

Base Instincts

Stripped down, the Id is a result of the Instinctual process and largely resides in our unconscious or preconscious experience. Instinct is reflexive, and the behaviors it prompts are directly related to our basic survival and reproductive needs. Instinct operates outside our consciousness because of the inability of the human brain to focus on the endless sources of stimulus we experience in life. As good as we’d like to think we are with multi-tasking our interpretive cognition can only process so much; the rest is pushed into our subconscious periphery and hindbrain subroutines. This is the auto-pilot part of our instinctual cognition.

Since we largely see our Rational and Emotional processes (not to mention our social consciousness) as “higher order” processes, we tend to downplay the importance of Instinct. Our Instinctive process evolved to sustain our physical survival and reproductive imperatives in as pragmatic and practical a way as would be expedient. In most respects Instinctual interpretation and cognition is, by necessity, based on immediacy. By comparison, Emotion and Reason are slower forms of cognition, and, in the case of Reason, requires a period of learning, development and internalization. As such, there is no complication of conscience or morality, nor time for rational or emotional reflection when instinctual awareness and action is necessary. All the things we call sin or immoral, unethical or duplicitous, are manifested by our Instinctual process. But so too are ennobling aspects like self-sacrifice, violence-in-protection, mate guarding and parental investment. Hypergamy is also a behavioral and psychological dynamic that is deeply rooted in the Instinctual process.

Because of all that instinct often carries a negative preconception, at least by modern standards. And thus the Id becomes the part of the human psyche inseparably connected to the instinctual process. The desire for immediate gratification, the direct, unmitigated satisfaction of our most basic needs, and the hedonistic pursuit of pleasure; all of these we associate with the Id. However, all of these basic gratifications are directed towards elements of our evolved, instinctual needs for survival and insurances of thriving in the future. Much of what we think of as impulsivity is connected to the immediate aspect of instinct, but even this often serves some latent biological or survival purpose.

Gendered Differences

In psychology 101 we’re taught to think of the Id as our ‘childish’ selves. How many times have we read in the manosphere about how men can better relate with women via Amused Mastery or relating to them like a bratty younger sister? This process, this PUA technique, is a subconscious appeal to women’s Id via the Instinctual process. When I proposed that women want a man who Just Gets It a huge part of that dynamic relies on a man appealing to a woman’s Instinctual cognition. This is exactly why demonstrating an intent serves so much better than explicating an intent. Actions speak louder than words because actions always speak clearly to our Instinctual processing. Yet one more reason I, and most of my Red Pill contemporaries, advocate for the Medium being the Message – behavior almost always appeals to instinct.

One of the questions I’m always asked by guys is, how do I know when a woman is in whichever phase of her ovulation? Usually this is prompted by some reasoned want to be able to know when to turn up the Alpha around their girlfriend’s proliferative phase and ease off when she’s in her luteal (down cycle) phase. When you look at this in terms of cognitive processes, a man’s Reasoning process wants to deductively solve a problem that is rooted in the Instinctual process. It certainly makes sense, like a lot of other problems, to use our smarts to solve that reproductive problem. The real problem is that the use of Reason is what defeats the Instinctual cognition. There are actually many subconscious, instinctual mechanisms men have evolved to determine a great deal of information about women reproductive states, but our Reason and what goes into influencing it, tends to make us discount what out Instinctive process is telling us.

Most guys get frustrated with Game at some stage of their learning (Reason) it. The most common complaint is “I can never hope to remember all of this shit perfectly all the time. I can’t calibrate the way I need to, or, this is all an act, when can I let my hair down and just relax with a girl?” Another common question/presumption guys hit me with is how I manage to continually Game my wife. The answer I almost universally give is that I don’t, in fact, consciously Game my wife. Rather, my success in our marriage and really all of my relationships with all the women in my life is the result of having internalized what I’ve learned from Red Pill awareness and made it who I am. I’ve taken what I’ve learned and internalized it to the point that Game became my instinctual response to women’s instinctual process.

Game is not an act for me, it’s an instinct. If you were to put a guitar in my hands today I could play it with a good degree of proficiency. I can play by ear and instinctually I anticipate where notes and chord progressions go if I’m trying to play a song I’ve never played before because I’ve been playing guitar for the better part of my life. However, there was a point in time where all of that was foreign to me. I could play by rote memorization, but playing music wasn’t instinctual. Playing an instrument wasn’t part of who I was at that point in time.

The same is true for internalizing Game. It is entirely possible for your Rational process to inform your Instinctual process as well as your Emotional processes. This interplay can work for all our cognitive processes, but as I’m focusing on instinct today I want to stress again that Rational and Emotional processes can alter the, largely subconscious, Instinctual process. I have pretty good pitch as a result of being a musician for so long. If you asked me to play a particular note or chord I would instinctively do so. What I wouldn’t do is hunt around the fretboard counting frets and string to come to it. This is the best illustration I can give you with regards to internalizing other things.

Martial arts is another good example. There are certain innate, instinctual reactions we have when we’re confronted with conflict or protecting ourselves. When something flies at our faces we flinch. When we hear a sudden loud noise we startle. These are inborn parts of our firmware that evolved in us for very good reasons. What martial arts training does is forces us to sublimate those natural instincts and replace them with more efficient instinctual responses. Again, this is the Rational process rewriting the instinctual process via internalization.

Art has always been something I’ve had an innate ability for. I have do doubt that many of our natural cognitive ‘gifts’ are in some way gene expressions. So when we see a ‘natural’ at something our rational/emotional minds tend to think of it as something almost supernatural. However, I had to learn to play music because I was determined to express myself creatively in that fashion as well, and that took perseverance and internalization of skills. I think the same can be said for guys we think are ‘naturals’ with regard to Game and women. They may have an instinctual affinity for Game. They may be blessed with good genetics. But Game can be learned and internalized down to the Instinctual level.

All of that said, there are still fundamental parts of our mental firmware that are ‘pre-loaded’ into us at birth. Shit tests, Hypergamy, mate guarding behaviors, ovulatory shift behaviors, and many more are in-loaded in women and every bit as Instinctual as breathing or eating or self-preservation. Just as there are physical gender differences in our brains and bodies, so too are their differences in men and women’s Instinctual processes. The easiest one for us to consider is in sexual imperatives. I’ve noted in many essays that only women are Hypergamous. Men and women’s sexual strategies are reflective of their differing physical and mental make up, but those strategies are also different (and often contradicting) as a result of the Instinctual process unique to men and women as well.

One of the more powerful instincts men have is our sexual impulse and as a consequence it’s one that we are taught to control the most. Hypergamy is also a product of women’s Instinctual process, however, since about 60 years ago, prosocial control over Hypergamy has become something individual to a woman. Men’s self-control over their sexual nature is something that’s been part of our upbringing for millennia, women today are just now being expected to self-police their own sexual impulsivity.

These innate gender differences in instinct are a very difficult aspect of human nature for both egalitarian equalists and traditional moralists to accept. Equalists chomp at the bit with respect to their ego-investments in blank-slate idealism. Even the idea of a gendered difference in human nature, much less a human “nature” at all (a concept most deny) conflicts with the social constructivism that forms most of their ideology. Moralists tend to think that acknowledging (much less embracing) our instinctual selves is endorsing the worst of it, or it’s some kind of license to shirk the personal responsibilities for it. And, for both equalist and moralist, accepting our instinctual natures seems deterministic in a way that conflicts with their sense of existential control.

Well, the good news for both is that understanding men and women’s Instinctually processed natures is something our other two processes (for better or worse) have an influence over. There’s a common refrain from equalists today that presumes we’ve “evolved beyond” our base instincts (if they acknowledge them at all). From moralists we’ve always been ‘higher minded’ and above our instincts, that is if we accept some ideological ‘truth’. The root of both of these presumptions can be traced to the Emotional and Rational processes influencing our Instinctive process.

I’m of the opinion that very few of us are actually ruled by our instincts, but they are always the favorite scapegoat for ideologues. As a Red Pill aware man I think it’s important to have an objective understanding of how the Instinctive process operates in ourselves and women. Denying or disqualifying the importance of instinct and why it evolved is usually one of the biggest blindspots for a Blue Pill conditioned mind.

In the next part of this series I’ll explore the Emotional process and how it’s become the preeminent social-defining experience for us.


Band of Brothers

Peterson drops the ball in a couple of forgivable instances here. First, many contemporary studies show that women do in fact enter an estrus state. Secondly, while he is entirely correct about women’s Hypergamy never seeking its own level, he implies here that it is singularly a man’s capacity to produce and share resources that forms the basis for women’s attraction. This is an interesting overlook when you consider how often he’s made reference to how women primarily look for sexual dominance in men. From the Beta Bucks, provisioning, side of women’s sexual strategy, a man’s capacity for production and sharing resources is certainly an attraction cue, but it is only a cue insofar as it applies to women’s long term security needs. From the Alpha Fucks, short term mating perspective, it is a man’s capacity for sexual arousal and his sexual availability to her that is the basis for assessing a man’s SMV.

I have a great deal of respect for Dr. Peterson. I count him amongst the greatest minds of Red Pill awareness, however, his analysis is often subject to a Blue Pill conditioning that predisposes him to a default belief in the inherent ‘goodness’ of the female psyche. That isn’t to say women are inherently ‘bad’, but it is to say his objectivity is colored by a want to see the feminine on a pedestal. Peterson tends to pepper in a Blue Pill conditioned masculine ridicule into his observations about men when he’s detailing gender differences and it’s his habit to presume the best from women. He accurately makes the case here for how men are continually driven by an existential crisis when it comes to being accepted by (‘perfectly well-intended’) women in passing on their genetic material, but falls into the trap of believing that women would only, logically, want to breed with men who have good long term prospects for providing and sharing resources. There’s a 30+ year body of evo-bio / evo-psych research that contradicts his presumption.

However, in this instance, Peterson hits upon the fundamental reasoning as to why men are by nature more competitive than women. Over the millennia of human evolution, the stresses of men’s breeding strategies and realities has become hardwired into the male mental firmware, and as such it has selected-for men having a more competitive nature than women. I would go so far as to suggest that competitiveness is a primary aspect of conventional masculinity – and one that requires a constant effort to socialize out of modern males today.

On the female side we have to consider how women evolved, socially and psychologically, in hunter-gatherer, foraging tribes, and how the environmental stress of maintaining a social collective shaped women’s mental firmware. It’s my belief that women’s intense need for long term security (as well as Hypergamous doubt) is directly descended from the need to hedge against the environmental uncertainties of our evolutionary past. The rigors of gestation, carrying a child to term, child birth and then rearing that child to puberty – all while gathering food and resources and defending that child and the collective against external (and sometime internal) threats selected-for women with a collectivist / cooperative mental firmware. While the men of the tribal society were off hunting game or defending the tribe, it would follow that women would develop a more unitary, collectivist social order of intrasexual cooperation in order to survive and, as Dr. Peterson points out, ensure that the genetic material of the men they selected (or were selected by) survived for posterity.

In several essays, and in my latest book, I describe women’s natural social order as the Sisterhood Über Alles. That is ‘women above all else’, and from an evolved psychological perspective this solidarity, collectivism and cooperative bent is the mental vestige of an evolution that demanded women to be so in order to survive. Evolution doesn’t care how women breed and survive, just that women breed and survive. Flash forward to modern times and we see women of every and any social, political, religious and racial stripe preempt any conviction inspired by them with the concerns of womankind.

There are several studies that indicate that collectivism is a characteristic of women’s mental firmware. When presented with the distribution of a common wealth (or resource) it’s women’s predisposition to mete those resources out to the familial, feminine-primary social group (tribe) in as even a distribution as possible, or by an individual’s most pressing needs. Again, this is convincing evidence of a mental framework that leans towards a collectivism that finds its roots in our evolutionary past.

This fundamental prioritizing of the survival, needs and best interests of women as a collective is what now forms the basis of, and drives, what I commonly refer to as the Feminine Imperative. And from the Feminine Imperative, combined with a male-permissive social structure that has allowed for women’s social primacy, we have largely developed into a feminine-primary social order that is founded on the evolved, collectivist social structure that women’s mental firmware naturally predisposes them to.

Collectivism, socialism, is a fundamental aspect of the female psyche. In a social order that prioritizes female interests above all else we see the rise and perpetuation of an egalitarian equalism that finds its roots in women’s natural predisposition for collectivism. I would argue here that the egalitarian equalism we contend with today is really a convenient cover-term for female social primacy, and one that is a result of women’s collectivist nature.

Male Dominance Hierarchies

As Dr. Peterson briefly details in this clip, it is primarily men’s performance burden (and a man’s capacity to share the fruits of it) that has historically been the basis of women’s selection criteria for the long term provisioning aspect of women’s Hypergamous natures. And as I mentioned, this only covers half of what makes for women’s true assessments of men’s sexual market value. DNA mapping of our foraging ancestors reveals the real story about the importance sexual arousal and strategic pluralism played in women’s sexual selection. Historically, only 20% of men bred with 80% of women. If we only look at this fact from Peterson’s perspective we’re left to conclude that this 20% looked like good long term prospects with resources to share, rather than consider the uglier side of Hypergamy and women opportunistically breeding with the best physical specimens they had access to and, proactively or retroactively, cuckolding the ‘good provider’. The mental schema of mate guarding didn’t develop in a vacuum – there are very good evolutionary reasons why men developed a subconscious, peripheral sensitivity to the behaviors that indicate women’s ovulatory phase.

Hypergamy doesn’t care, but it did indeed play a part in the evolution of men’s dominance hierarchies as Peterson suggests. Whether the criteria for selection was physical prowess or provisional prowess, the breeding pressures placed on men by women’s sexual strategy is responsible for a great deal of what we consider the male nature and conventional masculinity itself. While it may be a pleasant fiction for men to apply terms like strength and honor and fidelity to male-kind, those concepts exist outside the evolved male-competitive nature. Kings and emperors had breeding rights to harems while their subjects, by order of degree, had sexual access to progressively diminishing opportunities with women.

One aspect I think Peterson didn’t get around to explaining in this clip is that women have only had unilateral sexual selection opportunity in the past century due to the social and physical unfettering of Hypergamy. Being a king may’ve meant that man had more breeding opportunities than that of his lessers, but it in no way made him the best, or even the willing, choice for the women he bred with. Up until the rise of feminine social primacy, men have always had social, moral, ethical and yes, physical, means of exerting their own control over Hypergamy.

Competitiveness is what defines masculinity for every generation of men. While it may be part of women’s mental firmware to consider the collective first with regard to resource distribution, it is most definitely an evolved characteristic of men to accrue resources in order to be considered a good prospect for women’s long term security needs. When we consider the criteria women have in order for a man to represent an optimal Hypergamous prospect, it makes pragmatic sense that an innate competitiveness would be part of men’s psychological firmware. Nature would select-for a natural competitiveness in men. As such we observe that men consider merit and performance first in distributing resources (rewards) in order to recognize, in theory, an exceptionality in men. Even if it is within our selfish-gene nature to want to retain as much for ourselves (and thus make ourselves better prospects for Hypergamous optimization) we still recognize merit, or lack of it, in men’s burden of performance.

So, with regard to the bigger societal picture, what we’re seeing in our egalitarian equalist social experiment of today is not just a conflict in men and women’s social approaches, but also a fundamental conflict in which sex’s sexual strategy will be the socially predominant one. In a social sense it is a conflict in the Cardinal Rule of Sexual StrategiesSince the time of the Sexual Revolution the answer has been clear; it is women’s sexual strategy that has been allowed to define our social order.


Jack Donovan had a great post back in February titled We are not Brothers. I entirely cosign his sentiment in this essay – today men bandy around the term Brother without really considering the deeper implications that true, in-group, exclusively male, brotherhood entails. It’s a good essay, but I think one reason Jack is sensitive to the term losing its meaning is due to the efforts the Feminine Imperative has made in destroying men’s understanding of conventional masculinity. It’s deliberate, so Brotherhood means whatever the feminine feels comfortable in allowing it to mean, and it can effect control over its significance for as long as it can continue to confuse men about the sacrificial nature of conventional masculinity.

Men’s dominance hierarchies and breeding strategies predispose men to maverick independence (sigmas) or intrasexual rivalries within a fraternal group (tribes). Men’s collective, cooperative social structures – traditionally, exclusive male spaces – existed in spite of this intrasexually competitive nature. Even amongst the most steadfast, cooperative and loyal of brotherhoods there will always be intrasexual rivalries for breeding opportunities. And as Jordan B. Peterson notes, it is women’s Hypergamy that gives rise to male dominance hierarchies, but moreover it has led to the necessity for developing an evolved predisposition for men’s being competitive.

It is precisely this competitive mental firmware in men which makes it next to impossible for their to ever be a Brotherhood Über Alles – and in an age where men are shamed for masculinity, an age in which women will force themselves into male space as overseers, an age where men will adaptively define masculinity to mean whatever suits their weakest proficiencies, it’s easy to understand the difficulties in men cooperatively coming together to enforce their own collective best interests as men. In ages past, when masculine cooperation determined the fate of a tribe, a people, a nation, etc. this fraternity was a much more imperative concept for men.

It’s been noted before that in earlier eras formalized monogamy was a social adaptation with the latent purpose of solving men’s evolved imperative to ensure his own paternity. Whether this adaptation was (is) a successful hedge against women’s Hypergamy is debatable, but the relative insurance a man was afforded by formal monogamy was that he could send his genetic material on to successive generations. From an evolutionary perspective, men’s primary existential crisis is reproduction, and in order to successfully solve this problem women’s Hypergamy must be controlled for. As this push for male control superseded women’s imperatives it’s made for a social guarantee that a man would reproduce with a lessened need for competition and a lessened burden of performance for men. While high SMV men were guaranteed reproduction, the monogamy adaptation meant that, theoretically, only the lowliest of men wouldn’t find a mate.

That was the latent socio-sexual contract prior to the Sexual Revolution. Today, we see parallels for this struggle between men and women’s sexual strategies and women’s own social push to unilaterally control and institutionalize Hypergamy. Now the script has been flipped to socially create and enforce a new feminine-primary structure that has the latent purpose of ensuring even the lowest SMV woman can fulfill Hypergamy to a greater degree. Just as formal monogamy sought to ensure men could solve their reproductive purpose in spite of his performance burden, now we have women as the primary beneficiaries of a society structured to, theoretically, ensure they have access to both the best genes (Alpha Fucks) and the best provisioning (Beta Bucks) – all to the point that men are conscripted into doing so.

As women have less and less need of men who can (directly) produce and share resources the concept of masculine cooperation in enforcing their best interests becomes a farce at best, a ‘hate crime’ at worst. The more women can produce and/or consume resources, or conscript men to involuntarily produce and share, the more women lean towards the Alpha Fucks aspect of Hypergamy in prioritizing their sexual selection. As a result, male dominance hierarchies will continue to develop around the short term sexual breeding criteria of women. In the past, as per Dr. Peterson, that hierarchy may have been centered on long term provisioning; today it is all about women’s pleasure in accessing the best genetic material her evolved hindbrain determines is in her best interests.

Yet still we hear women bemoan a lack of marriageable, long term producer/sharers who are their (perceived) status equals or better (always better). The evolved need for that security providing, competent male is still part of her mental firmware, no matter what the social conventions of the Feminine Imperative are telling her conscious self. And in a pragmatic, adaptive response, men will continue to define masculinity for themselves, continue to prioritize short term sexual arousal above long term attraction, and continue to be befuddled or embarrassed by the ideas of forming Brotherhoods with any deeper meaning than what pop culture will define them for men as.

Late edit: Reader Novaseeker had a brilliant observation about the reasons women’s collectivism evolved.

The innate sisterhood, or herd, also arises from the reality that most human tribes were patrilocal and not matrilocal. That is, the core of the tribe was a group of males bonded by kin, and they brought in females from other tribes (trade/conquest) routinely for mating. Thus, the males had relatively high levels of cooperation due to being kin-bonded (not perfect levels of cooperation — rivalries always exist, violence happens in kin bonds as well — but much higher than among non-kin-bonded males), whereas the females had to adapt to cooperate with the other females despite the lack of kin bonds between them as a kind of counterweight to the innate solidarity that the kin-bonded males had vis-a-vis the females. The kind of female sisterhood/collectivism that we see in women evolved, in addition to what you write about, as well from the need to counteract the male solidarity in patrilocal tribes — women evolved to cooperate with other “strange” women in the face of this male solidarity which was based on kin bonds.

A key point of this — and something which explains much of the behavior of women *politically* in the last 200 years or so — is that the context in which this evolved was specifically to counterweigh male power. That is, because females would otherwise have remained weak and isolated in the face of a tribe of kin-bonded males, they evolved this sisterhood/collective mentality specifically to provide a counterweight to male power. This is important, because it’s this specific context in which this mentality comes to the fore most prominently in women, even today. Women can fight and scratch and claw with each other and be bitches with each other incessantly, but when one of them comes into conflict with a man or “with men”, the sisterhood/collective mindset kicks in in high gear, precisely because this is the specific context it emerged to counter. In other words, it’s specifically evolved to offset male power, to counterbalance male power, by forging solidarity between females who otherwise would not have any reason to act like a sisterhood (and who may even dislike each other).

Contemporary feminism is perhaps the most obvious form of this, but it isn’t the only one. The pronounced female in-group preference is another easy to spot one as well. But in any case, a key point to understand is that the sisterhood isn’t neutral — it’s evolved to counterbalance any kind of male power that threatens women’s interests as a group. This is the case even though women haven’t lived in patrilocal conditions for a long, long, long time, and even though contemporary men have no solidarity to speak of at all which could possibly threaten women’s interest as a group. That evolutionary history casts long shadows, and the tendency for women to see men as a cabal acting to control women — when in fact, as we all know, we’re kind of the exact opposite of that — arises from the collective evolutionary memory of adaptations to deal with the very real male solidarity females faced when they were imported into patrilocal male tribes of kin-bonded males.