A god complex is an unshakable belief characterized by consistently inflated feelings of personal ability, privilege, or infallibility.[1] The person is also highly dogmatic in their views, meaning the person speaks of their personal opinions as though they were unquestionably correct.[2] Someone with a god complex may exhibit no regard for the conventions and demands of society, and may request special consideration or privileges.[2]

God complex is not a clinical term nor diagnosable disorder and does not appear in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The recognized diagnostic name for the behaviors associated with a god complex is narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). A god complex may also be associated with mania or a superiority complex.

The first person to use the term "god complex" was Ernest Jones (1913–51).[3] His description, at least in the contents page of Essays in Applied Psycho-Analysis, describes the god complex as belief that one is a god.[4]

Jehovah complex

Jehovah complex is a related term used in Jungian analysis to describe a neurosis of egotistical self-inflation. Use included in psychoanalytic contributions to psychohistory and biography, with, for example, Fritz Wittels using the term about Sigmund Freud in his 1924 biography[5] and H. E. Barnes using the term about George Washington and Andrew Jackson.[6]

See also


  1. ^ Christian, Danny (October 2021). Reversing Willie Lynch's Slave Making Method. Xlibris US. ISBN 9781664109612.
  2. ^ a b Kaplan, Harold I.; Benjamin J. Sadock (1972). Modern Group Book, volume 4: Sensitivity through encounter and marathon. J. Aronson.
  3. ^ Deep Blue Archived 2012-01-20 at the Wayback Machine at the University of Michigan umich.edu Retrieved 2012-01-22
  4. ^ Jones, Ernest (15 March 2007). Essays in Applied Psycho-Analysis. Lightning Source Inc. p. 472. ISBN 978-1-4067-0338-2. Retrieved 2012-01-22.
  5. ^ Sigmund Freud: His Personality, His Teachings and His School, by Fritz Wittels, 1924
  6. ^ "Some Reflections on the Possible Service of Analytic Psychology to History", by H. E. Barnes, Psychoanal Rev 1921, 8(1):22-37