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  1. #11
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    It seems like they invest too much energy into very specific things that aren't considered that meaningful to most people
    Well, who gives a shit about what is meaningful to most people?

    Generally anyway, I would not restrict the variants to describing interactions with other people, but to more abstract descriptions of interaction with every object we encounter in daily life. Which means that an sx first is more likely to get fixated in a particular field of interest that does not bear particular social relevance, for example (this in the case of an underdevloped so-last).

    Personally, I have the most trouble interacting with so-first people, and tend to interact much better with sp-first. With sp-first, at least it can be seen that they are putting their (and ours, too, in the case they get attached) survival as a priority to deep connection. I can understand that. With so-first, I sense they are putting other people and their opinion as a priority, which is something I find completely unbearable. Also, being a so-second and sx-first, I tend to have a willingness to impact the social sphere too, even if to a lesser extent than firsters, which makes for huge blowouts.
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  2. #12
    Luctor et emergo Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Urchin View Post
    Maybe I'm not understanding the system properly, but I think that most of the descriptions of the Enneagram Varients (Sexual, Social, Self-Preservation) are ill-conceived.

    Many descriptions I have seen descrive the SP varient as focused on maintaining material security as far as safety and earthly needs goes. I feel that a person who is self-absorbed (disregard negative connotation) isn't necessarily materially-focused. Personally, I see myself as constantly introspective and sometimes egotistical, but I have little concern for material security. If I have the very basic necessities, I'm fine. I don't think about it very much. I don't pay attention to earthly things very well, as I am caught up in my thoughts a lot of the time. And yet, I feel that I'm a nearly even mix of SX and SP.

    Also, SX doesn't fit the model well. I see SP as "self-focused" and SO as "others-focused," at a bare bones level. What does that make SX? From my understanding, it's a sort of "transcendentally-focused?" Looking for something elusive? I don't feel like this is based well in Enneagram literature. I'm toying with my own definitions.

    Can anyone shed light on this for me?
    Well, for starters, you feel a mix of sx and sp. Which means you will naturally not identify with a fair bit of the variant descriptions. Basically, if you think you're a mix, you won't jump at feeling right at home with an sp-first description. Secondly, you may be looking at the general variants instead of the specific variants of the Five. Study the Five's self-preservationism, and you might realise that a) you're not an sp-first after all, or b) you actually feel more affinity with sp-first now that you've looked at the Five's variants, not just the 'different Enneagram variants.

  3. #13
    Luctor et emergo Ezra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Well, who gives a shit about what is meaningful to most people?

    Generally anyway, I would not restrict the variants to describing interactions with other people, but to more abstract descriptions of interaction with every object we encounter in daily life. Which means that an sx first is more likely to get fixated in a particular field of interest that does not bear particular social relevance, for example (this in the case of an underdevloped so-last).
    Absolutely. Take self-preservationism. That's not an interaction with another person; it's with an object(s).

  4. #14
    Senior Member "?"'s Avatar
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    I think that for the most part, FDG and Ezra are correct, however self-preservation is not exclusively for objects although interaction with others may appear that way since the variant focuses on the basics of life. Based on your self-disclosure Urchin, you may be using that variant negatively. However since E5s naturally hoard (similar to E9s naturally merging with others or a group) the variants are confusing for me. Here are Riso & Hudson's take on the three variants:
    Self Preservation Instinct
    People who have this as their dominant instinct are preoccupied with the safety, comfort, health, energy, and well-being of the physical body. In a word, they are concerned with having enough resources to meet life's demands. Identification with the body is a fundamental focus for all humans, and we need our body to function well in order to be alive and active in the world. Most people in contemporary cultures are not faced life or death "survival" in the strictest sense; thus, Self-Preservation types tend to be concerned with food, money, housing, medical matters, and physical comfort. Moreover, those primarily focused on self-preservation, by extension, are usually interested in maintaining these resources for others as well. Their focus of attention naturally goes towards things related to these areas such as clothes, temperature, shopping, decorating, and the like, particularly if they are not satisfied in these areas or have a feeling of deficiency due to their childhoods. Self-Pres types tend to be more grounded, practical, serious, and introverted than the other two instinctual types. They might have active social lives and a satisfying intimate relationship, but if they feel that their self-preservation needs are not being met, still tend not to be happy or at ease. In their primary relationships, these people are "nesters"—they seek domestic tranquility and security with a stable, reliable partner.

    Sexual (aka "Attraction") Instinct
    Many people originally identify themselves as this type because they have learned that the Sexual types are interested in "one-on-one relationships." But all three instinctual types are interested in one-on-one relationships for different reasons, so this does not distinguish them. The key element in Sexual types is an intense drive for intimacy and a constant awareness of the "chemistry" between themselves and others. Sexual types are immediately aware of the attraction, or lack thereof, between themselves and other people. Further, while the basis of this instinct is related to sexuality, it is not necessarily about people engaging in the sexual act. There are many people that we are excited to be around for reasons of personal chemistry that we have no intention of "getting involved with." Nonetheless, we might be aware that we feel stimulated in certain people's company and less so in others. The sexual type is constantly moving toward that sense of intense stimulation and intimacy in their relationships and in their activities. They are the most "energized" of the three instinctual types, and tend to be more aggressive, competitive, charged, and emotionally intense than the Self-Pres or Social types. Sexual types need to have deep intimacy in their primary relationships or else they remain unsatisfied. They enjoy being intensely involved—even merged—with others, and can become disenchanted with partners who are unable to meet their need for intense energetic union. Losing yourself in a "fusion" of being is the ideal here, and Sexual types are always looking for this state with others and with stimulating objects in their world.

    Social (aka "Adaptive") Instinct
    Just as many people tend to misidentify themselves as Sexual types because they want one-on-one relationships, many people fail to recognize themselves as Social types because they get the (false) idea that this means always being involved in groups, meetings, and parties. If Self-Preservation types are interested in adjusting the environment to make themselves more secure and comfortable, Social types adapt themselves to serve the needs of the social situation they find themselves in. Thus, Social types are highly aware of other people, whether they are in intimate situations or in groups. They are also aware of how their actions and attitudes are affecting those around them. Moreover, Sexual types seek intimacy, Social types seek personal connection: they want to stay in long-term contact with people and to be involved in their world. Social types are the most concerned with doing things that will have some impact on their community, or even broader domains. They tend to be warmer, more open, engaging, and socially responsible than the other two types. In their primary relationships, they seek partners with whom they can share social activities, wanting their intimates to get involved in projects and events with them. Paradoxically, they actually tend to avoid long periods of exclusive intimacy and quiet solitude, seeing both as potentially limiting. Social types lose their sense of identity and meaning when they are not involved with others in activities that transcend their individual interests.

  5. #15
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    I have trouble understanding people who seem to have SX stronger. It seems like they invest too much energy into very specific things that aren't considered that meaningful to most people, and they don't seem to know how to hold back enough of themselves to be able to pull out if they have to. Do you understand what I mean?
    Well, in a sense, you are right. Romeo and Juliet tell a fantastic story of Intimacy

    As someone who is Intimate and Asocial, the idea of forming a personal bond with people is extremely important. Not just anyone, though. There's a kind of specific personal magnetism that I can' really explain to anyone who hasn't felt it. I have to feel that draw to someone before I'm interested.
    Once I am, the ideal goal is to ultimately breakdown every mental barrier and to fully trust and understand this person. There's an intent to intwine our two lives.
    Of course, it rarely works out that way. That's why I called it the ideal.

    I think, if there was some divine and undeniable prediction that I could never form an intimate bond with anyone, I'd just kill myself.

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    How would you say my behavior looks from your perspective?
    Inhuman, like a robot.
    That's how non-intimate people seem to me.
    Last edited by Magic Poriferan; 01-30-2008 at 02:41 PM. Reason: wrong word
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  6. #16
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    What Magic said, as far as SX thinking goes.

    Like a craving to crawl inside each other's skin, know each other inside and out and be "one" (even while still ourselves) with each other. There is no immersion that is too deep.

    And people not interested in doing this seem "shallow" in the sense that I find difficulty connecting with them. The relationship inadvertently feels thin and on the surface to me, even if they seem totally happy with things.

    For a long time I used to cause trouble by trying to force a deepness that wouldn't exist there; now I just change my expectations.

    It can be a little obsessive when I find other people with SX tendencies... like two stones bound together hurled into the deepest trenches of the ocean.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  7. #17
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Once I am, the ideal goal is to ultimately breakdown every mental barrier and to fully trust and understand this person. There's an intent to intwine our two lives.
    Of course, it rarely works out that way. That's why I called it the ideal.
    :horor: That's exactly what I never want happening to me. I would probably feel incredibly violated by such a thing. Wow, we're different, aren't we?

    Inhuman, like a robot.
    That's how non-intimate people seem to me.
    Do you perceive my actual behavior here that way, or do you just assume my behavior should seem that way to you because that's how non-intimate people usually seem to you? Just curious.

  8. #18
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    :horor: That's exactly what I never want happening to me. I would probably feel incredibly violated by such a thing. Wow, we're different, aren't we?
    Yes, apparently we are.
    I don't usually do any match-making with type systems, but I do think the Instincts are very useful for gauging the viability of a relationship.

    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    Do you actually perceive my behavior that way, or do you just assume my behavior would seem that way to you because that's how non-intimate people usually seem to you? Just curious.
    I have to say... Yeah.
    You are among the most matter-of-fact, elaborate, humorless, and unexpressive people that I've seen on this forum. You are also the most genderless, though I can't exactly explain how.

    Only recently have you been getting a bit more comical, and it seems you've been breaking-out the emoticons a bit more.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  9. #19
    Member lbloom's Avatar
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    Out of curiosity, athenian, do you know your SLOAN / big five type?

  10. #20
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    Athenian, true intimacy feels good. I can understand if you've never met a person that evoked your desire to be intimate, but to never want it.... that's pretty out there.

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