I first heard the term sigma reading Vox Day’s blog when he tried to unpack Roissy’s definition of the male hierarchy, believing the latter had over-simplified things. The defining essence of the sigma is fierce autonomy. He alone stands outside the male domination hierarchy. It’s easier to show examples of sigma rather than explain
- Sigma: Han Solo, Bobo Fett, Wolverine, Batman, Sherlock Holmes, Tyler Durden (early movie), James Bond
- Alpha: Yoda, Luke Skywalker (trainee), Darth Vader, Cyclops, Tyler Durden (late movie)
It’s harder to find alpha movie characters because sigma is waaaaaay cooler. Whereas an alpha goes into a social situation expecting to dominate it, like an irresistable force, the sigma resists being drawn into any situations, like an immovable object. He is transient and self-absorbed.
Lately I’ve been thinking sigma and alpha are really just the introversion and extraversion ends of the same spectrum. The sigma mostly wants to be left alone to forge his own path and is troubled by society’s constant attempted to draw him back in, imposing restrictions and demands on his time and freedom. The alpha actively engages in society to create or subvert these restrictions for his own gratification. Considered another way, the sigma is channelling Warrior energy and the alpha is channelling King energy.
We were just watching A Fistfull of Dollars in our cinema room this evening and I was reminded what a perfect outline of the sigma archetype Clint Eastwood paints with his character. Just watch these opening scenes. Slow movement, disinterest, self-absorption, wanderlust, reluctance to get involved….. all so effortlessly cool.