With his longed-for 'shrine' Jeffrey Dahmer hoped to breach the border that demarcates life from death. And in so doing find 'peace' and 'power.'
Thankyou so much for this. Your knowledge on so many levels, is incredible. You go deep into the physcology of the mother/baby bond, which I find absolutely fascinating. I am currently reading "The Denial of Death " and "Escape from Evil" by Ernest Becker, which is along the same lines. This was so interesting, I can't wait to read more of your work.
When these emails arrive I have to go through a back and forth in my head. I mean I'm not sure I want to read them, as compelling as your writing is, it's still 'Jeffrey Dahmer'. But you make them worth the time I spend Fred. This one doubly so. I do love how you stay true to your astrological roots, and also these new interweaving of psychological insights are fascinating. I think I want to read more of Fromm's material (he is new to me). Can you recommend a good intro type of book on him?
Thank you for another fascinating essay. I have been following Jeff Dahmer’s story since ‘91 when he first came on the news and never tire of his story. I appreciate your take on the spiritual and mystical aspects of his life that are often overlooked even though it was a big part of his being. In my opinion his dynamic with his parents was the main contributing factor to his condition. I agree with your point that his open and often graphic explanations of his crimes can be a “revenge” against his parents. The Stone Philips interview with his father was so strange and many would rather die than sit next to a parent confessing to details of a crime, but he appears okay with it and as you pointed out when he showed off the box, I feel that may have been more about humiliating his father.
I think the cannibalism remains an open question. The English serial killer "Dez" (Dennis Nilsen) gave his opinion that Dahmer was only fantasizing about eating the boys he killed. I don't think he has any more insight into Dahmer, despite similar crimes, than any one else, though the author Brian Masters, who wrote in-depth books on both Dez and Dahmer, agrees with the fantasy premise.
Dahmer wanted inert partners. He could have stopped at simply drugging guys. What was the added value of killing them? To keep parts of their bodies as souvenirs and as aides to masturbation. Eating them was the next step, and Dahmer had long ago abandoned reigning in his obsessions.
Eating the boys is very much a signature of the Dahmer "legend." It's this that places him in the popular mind alongside Hitler and Stalin. I don't think we can cut out this part of the story. It is the story Dahmer himself told.