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  1. #1
    The Destroyer Colors's Avatar
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    Default Explain the cognitive functions to me

    Although I read all these threads on MBTI, I often feel like I don't really "get" what all this talk is about of the cognitive functions (and have a very hard time typing people as a result). How do you recognize them in people? It's possible everyone has their own general idea of what the functions are (mine generally shaped by the people I know who I think embody the functions), so please share.

    My general "feel" of the functions: (kind of lengthy, so rational functions first)

    Te: Problem solving- how to get from A to B in the most efficient way possible. Logically tailored for the situation. I think I generally associate my thoughts on Te based on my ESTJ friend, who is generally satisfied to create a solution that works. Whereas I am more likely to dislike the way the problem is framed and miss the point completely.

    Ti: Problem solving encompasses how all situations can be resolved using the methods/philosophy. I think of myself as Ti dominant. More like I think everything in the world can be defined and dissected.

    Fe: ? I've sort of confused by the descriptions of this function. Sometimes it's described as showing the right social graces- but doesn't it also encompass emotionally relating to people in some sort of empathy? Is it meant to be calculating, like a complex emotional chess game or is it caring for others or is it ... understanding the world through the complexity of subjectivity?

    Fi: I think I am drawn to INFPs, so my idea of Fi is very colored by my experiences with them (though I am starting to doubt my typing because INFPs are always described as very happy-go-lucky people). From the outside, I see Fi-dominant people as not particularly expressive of all the F, but rather strong in their beliefs (if that makes any sense)- and drawn to emotional highs and lows. But I am very curious about their insides.

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    This should help give you a start. (People can discuss it below.)

    "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

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    Cognitive functions determine how we think and perceive, which determines how we behave, since all behavior starts in the mind, and the combination of our mind and our behavior determines our personality, the perfect fusion of Jungian theories with those of David Keirsey.

    We are everything we imagine, and everything we imagine creates new worlds of our design, physical in the form of inventions and nonphysical in the form of dreams alike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colors View Post
    Although I read all these threads on MBTI, I often feel like I don't really "get" what all this talk is about of the cognitive functions (and have a very hard time typing people as a result). How do you recognize them in people? It's possible everyone has their own general idea of what the functions are (mine generally shaped by the people I know who I think embody the functions), so please share.

    My general "feel" of the functions: (kind of lengthy, so rational functions first) [...]

    Te: Problem solving- how to get from A to B in the most efficient way possible. Logically tailored for the situation. I think I generally associate my thoughts on Te based on my ESTJ friend, who is generally satisfied to create a solution that works. Whereas I am more likely to dislike the way the problem is framed and miss the point completely.

    Ti: Problem solving encompasses how all situations can be resolved using the methods/philosophy. I think of myself as Ti dominant. More like I think everything in the world can be defined and dissected.

    Fe: ? I've sort of confused by the descriptions of this function. Sometimes it's described as showing the right social graces- but doesn't it also encompass emotionally relating to people in some sort of empathy? Is it meant to be calculating, like a complex emotional chess game or is it caring for others or is it ... understanding the world through the complexity of subjectivity?

    Fi: I think I am drawn to INFPs, so my idea of Fi is very colored by my experiences with them (though I am starting to doubt my typing because INFPs are always described as very happy-go-lucky people). From the outside, I see Fi-dominant people as not particularly expressive of all the F, but rather strong in their beliefs (if that makes any sense)- and drawn to emotional highs and lows. But I am very curious about their insides.
    I realize that you’re after the “feel” of the individual functions, rather than a definition. It seems that you have a pretty good “feel” of Te and Ti. I think it’s possible to do the same for Fe and Fi.

    For example:

    1) You looked at Te and Ti in terms of their “problem-solving” aspect. Well, basically all the rational (Judging) functions are “problem-solving” functions. Both T and F build models for understanding and dealing with the world. When faced with a problem, the individual thumbs through his/her models and tries to find a good match. If the real world is too different from the available models, the person either feels disillusioned and judges the world negatively as being chaotic and unpredictable or he/she sets about building new models (or adapting old ones) to explain the new input.

    2) You noted that Te and Ti are basically both grounded in logic and analysis. The big difference between them is that Te is practical application whereas Ti analyzes the underlying principles.

    You can treat Fe and Fi in a similar fashion: They are basically both grounded in empathy and interactions between people. The big difference between them is that Fe is practical application (direct interaction) whereas Fi analyzes the underlying principles (values and ethics).

    3) I think where your theorizing falls apart is that you see Te and Ti as both monolithic, whereas you see Fe as a grab-bag of interaction styles ("[...] showing the right social graces- but doesn't it also encompass emotionally relating to people in some sort of empathy? Is it meant to be calculating, like a complex emotional chess game or is it caring for others or is it ... understanding the world through the complexity of subjectivity? [...]”). And Fi is just a mystery to you.

    Instead, you should try to view Te and Ti as a grab-bag of logical and analytical styles: Leadership, organization, time management, delegation, jurisdiction, science, engineering, mechanics, police functions, etc. with Te being practical application and Ti being analysis of the principles behind them.

    (BTW, any of those things can be done in an altruistic or principled fashion, or they can be done in a calculating or manipulative fashion; they can be subjective or objective.)

    Similarly, Fe and Fi are a grab-bag of interactive styles: Harmony, group dynamics, counseling, personal boundaries, networking, sales, the Humanities, being a good host, teaching, performing/entertaining, caregiving, providing spiritual services, etc. with Fe being practical application and Fi being analysis of the principles behind them.

    (Again, any of those things can be done in an altruistic or principled fashion, or they can be done in a calculating or manipulative fashion; they can be subjective or objective.)

    4) So basically, when trying to develop a “feel” for these functions, you either need to expand your definition of Te and Ti out to include all the various ways those two functions manifest themselves, as you did for Fe; or you need to shrink your definition of Fe and Fi inward so that it’s just a single monolithic theme (empathy and interaction), as you did for Te and Ti.

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    .
    Quote Originally Posted by http://www.nyaap.org/jung-lexicon/
    In Jung’s model of typology, a thinking attitude is oriented by the principle of logic; a sensation attitude is oriented by the direct perception of concrete facts; intuition orients itself to future possibilities; and feeling is governed by subjective worth.
    .
    "Where wisdom reigns, there is no conflict between thinking and feeling."
    — C.G. Jung

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    Senior Member sulfit's Avatar
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    There are descriptions of functions here, here, and here.

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