The Rorschach Omnipotence Scale and closed-system processing.

This exploratory study demonstrates several key aspects of a psychoanalytic theory of omnipotent defenses, based on the Novick and Novick (1996, 2003, 2004) description of a “closed system” sadomasochistic cycle in which omnipotence plays a central role in the regulation of self-esteem and emotions. A new measure, the Rorschach Omnipotence Scale (ROS), assesses Rorschach response content and test behavior for omnipotent and magical themes. The Aggressive Content Scale and the luck subscale of the Oral Dependent Language Scale from the Rorschach Performance Assessment System were also used (R-PAS; Meyer, Viglione, Mihura, Erard, & Erdberg, 2011). Support for Novick and Novick’s description of closed-system processing was sought through association of the ROS with a number of Comprehensive System variables (Exner, 2003). As predicted, omnipotent content and test behaviors were associated with reality distortion, narcissism, and interpersonal defensiveness. Omnipotent content, but not test behaviors, were also associated with aggressive content and luck content. A posited relationship between omnipotent content or behaviors and cognitive restriction was not supported. Magic content was positively associated with use of fantasy in problem-solving and self-representation, but without the reality distortion or narcissistic vulnerabilities associated with omnipotent content and behaviors. These results offer possible corroboration and clarification to the theory, may aid in clinical diagnosis and intervention, and open up new avenues of potential Rorschach research. Because of the exploratory nature of the design, replication and validation of these findings by future studies is desirable. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)