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  1. #1
    Senior Member Little_Sticks's Avatar
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    Default A Critic of Psychological Types (not the functions).

    *Please read the whole thing before criticizing; it all glues together. *I took the word definitions from online sites.



    Hypothesis:

    Psychological types are not inherent for all (i.e. are not purely genetic and given at birth) because human interpretation and understanding is too variable in its capacity to change and adapt to environmental stimuli. Personality is grown through various encouraging and discouraging aspects of the environment, which includes the direct effect of other human beings in communication and the direct effect of human force between human beings, as well as certain genetic characteristics a person may have. Types can only be applied to past timelines of a person's life and does not have to remain a constant. So the functions do exist and can be used to determine what types of judgements or information perceiving a person is doing in a given historical context and even apply types at various intervals. But to assume a current type is to propose to act as that type into the future (since the future is now), and is only such.



    Proof:

    A. Consider something such as physics and mathematics. Newton came up with basic theories that were able to merge mathematics to create laws and an understanding of basic physical characteristics that we witness in the world around us, such as F=MA. We can throw a ball and understand that it will come back down to us and use math to see how this will occur with time. Because of this we can apply this law to many things to create machines that will obey these laws and make our lives easier or more enjoyable. And because of that there are very few who (probably mostly consisting of religious zealots) would dare to obstinately and ardently crusade that these laws do not exist (above the quantum level). It's possible understanding the quantum level of what is going on could lead to an alternate understanding and use of how to manipulate things above the quantum level, but regardless of that, the physics laws we have have stood the test of time and are collectively agreed to exist and validly explain our physical world with a specific understanding of not what goes on in the quantum level of matter and the universe. In conclusion, physics (above the quantum level) is seen as the objective understanding of inanimate objects, where inanimate means that the objects do not share the intelligence applied to a life-form (where life means the condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organisms, being manifested by growth through metabolism, reproduction, and the power of adaptation to environment through changes originating internally.). From this we can say that since inanimate objects do not share any of the characteristics of a life-form to adapt to an environment that the inanimate object is opposite to a life-form and therefore lacks intelligence since it is subject to the understood and certain objective laws of physics around us (above the quantum level).

    B. Consider something such as intelligence. If we say that intelligence is the capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc, then we can say that a life-form has to have intelligence to fulfill its definition of being able to adapt. Then if we consider that inanimate objects (essentially everything else from a life-form) do not adapt (as explained in section A) then they do not have intelligence. Thus we can say that to understand a human being, or any other life-form for that matter, we can not talk about that life-form's intelligence without also talking about the environment that it struggles and adapts to. In this way, a life-form's intelligence is described and explained through its past interaction with its environment, in a historical sense. And to accurately compare the intelligence of two different life-form's one must observe them in exactly similar environments, or the comparisons are invalid. So how can we explain the differences in intelligence between two life-forms when they have exactly the same environments? Genetics.

    C. It can be said that to be a life form one must be capable of adapting to at least one environment to survive, since that is part of the definition of life we are using here. So we have the human ability to adapt to an environment through the use of a conscious intelligence that attempts to understand its environment as best it can and adapt to it. Part of that adaptation will be a result of genetics. These genetics could lead to one person understanding emotionally expressive interactions with people better than most others. Other genetics could give someone better reflexes or strength or even a photographic memory. Genetics is obviously going to be important in a person's intelligence and some people will have better talents than others as a result. But nonetheless one still has to interact with the environment to learn about and utilize the talents they have. If they aren't utilized, then they won't be apparent in a person's intelligence. And inversely, if they are utilized, they can be apparent in a person's intelligence, but may not; this is because some talents could be seen by society or maybe even the person as useless and will be suppressed or limited and not a main or easily apparent focus of a person's intelligence.

    D. What does personality have to do with intelligence? If intelligence is what describes and explains life-forms, then personality must be a frame-of-reference of a human life-form's intelligence. Thus personality is shaped by environment, as much as it is by genetics.

    Conclusion: Personality-Type can only be used to explain a person's historical behavior, and since it is dependent upon environment, it is not appropriate to suggest type as given at birth, or something set-in-stone; and to assume a type is then to propose a resolution (unconsciously or consciously) to be that type into the future.




    *I've been needing to get this out for a long damn time. I hope someone actually understands this.

  2. #2
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    I read the first and last sentences and I get it.

    I've been seeing you needing to get this out since you got here.

    What you conclude is mostly correct, but it is missing some important parts...

    We have tendencies (i.e., not determinations) that will direct our libido in certain directions.

    The probabilities for these tendencies are influenced by our genetics, and by our past experiences/decisions.

    Whichever direction our libido goes is not determined, but is probabilistically weighted, and therefore whatever functions we use are not determined, but are simply probabilistic; as such, we do not necessarily hold rigidly to a particular type's functional set at all times.

    However, for some people (perhaps even most), the probability-weightings are such that they rarely deviate from their "basal" functional set (i.e., the set of functions associated with the highest probability weightings on an individual's various axes: S vs. N, T vs. F, E vs. I).

    As such, and even in cases where people deviate occasionally from their "basal" type, people generally tend to display, over the long run, characteristics of a particular type, or, possibly, a hybrid type (which occurs when the probability weightings on one or more of the axes is relatively close to 50%).
    Last edited by Zarathustra; 08-17-2010 at 05:34 PM.

  3. #3
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    okay, so, i read through the whole thing. it was challenging, can't lie. you have a LOT of Ti going on somewhere. tell me if i've got this right?

    my understanding of this post
    or: teal dear version

    Hypothesis: types aren't static because people adapt.
    Proof:
    • A. inanimate objects explicitly obey the laws of physics (quantum being a different matter entirely). only living beings exert willful change and adapt to their environments.
    • B. intelligence, the capacity for learning, is necessary to adapt. intelligence is exclusive to living beings because they willfully adapt. assessing intelligence requires analyzing environment. genetics accounts for difference in intelligence within the same environment.
    • C.living entails adaptation. part of adaptation is genetically determined. part of it is environmentally determined. if capabilities exist that are not utilized, they will not be recognized. inversely, capabilities could exist that are utillized but not recognized.
    • D. intelligence is what describes and explains living beings, and personality is a frame of reference for intelligence. personality is also shaped by environment.

    Conclusion: personality type explains past but not future behavior because it does not account for future adaptation.

    i hope i didn't fuck that up too bad.

    i'm most confused by point D. how did you come to the conclusion that personality is a frame of reference for intelligence? i think i get what you mean, but i want to be sure.

    anyway, if this is all right, i think you have a very good point, but i also i think what Z said applies. i've personally been thinking about developmental stuff and personality a lot lately, and i'm willing to bet that there are critical periods in a person's childhood after which these preferences are pretty much a done deal, even though they're mutable by adaptation to environment prior to that. in other words, i believe that they are both genetically and environmentally determined, but i think it would be very difficult for a person's type to change unless they began as an ambivert (in N/F and T/J).

    if what you've proposed is completely true, then at least some of us should be able to pinpoint times in our lives at which our types changed, and reasons why. i can say i become more ENTJ when the pressure's really on, but it's exhausting to me; it's not a preference, it's a temporary adaptation. the thing is, despite my Te strength, all else being equal, it's still my preference to decide on "feelings." and i think that this is in part because of frame of reference: i've built a life around Fi impressions and values and Ne interpretation and understanding. so while we can develop other functions, it's very unlikely that our underlying preferences will change, because they are the "foundation" of our personality as developed over time. and those preferences have been coloring every other part of our personality for a very long time. it's like that cake metaphor from the other thread - we can detect ingredients, but they're inextricable because they've been mixed and recombined. even if certain tendencies are willingly repressed, they're only that - repressed, not fundamentally altered.

    so is it possible that i will wake up tomorrow morning, be thrown into a world that strongly favors sensory perception, and "change" to an ESFP, but unless i have amensia or brain damage, i see it as unlikely that i will ever stray very far from my preferences. why would i? it would be starting back at square 1 while everyone else is far, far ahead. instead, it's more productive to develop my other strengths while continuing to rely on my natural preferences.

    incidentally -- i threw the word "willfully" into my summary because AI can adapt too, but it's not of its own volition.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Little_Sticks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    ...
    Yeah, that's a good way of looking at it - as a probability. That makes a lot more sense than the idea of a personality that doesn't and shouldn't change and only balances with age. That idea just never sat well with me and I don't understand why it's most prominent in discussions.

    Quote Originally Posted by skylights View Post
    ...
    Yeah, basically. The quoted is a good summary. I just felt in order to make a thread like this it was important to supply long and boring Ti-analysis and definitions so that it wouldn't get stymied into a useless semantic monkey-debate about tacit knowledge like some threads end up becoming. If you see it as hard for someone to change a personality, I think that's fine. If I were to give a speculative and subjective reason why I think this to be true is that as people get older they just lose the motivation to want to change their personality. The more someone goes out of a comfort zone the more mistakes someone is going to make. If you think about it, growing up is about making a lot of mistakes, determining what you don't make mistakes at too much, and making a choice about what you want to do, and as you age you hopefully learn enough to make as little mistakes as possible in your life. It probably just becomes unproductive and unrewarding for someone to spend lots of energy to change after a certain point unless the environment changes drastically to make it necessary for survival.

  5. #5
    i love skylights's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little_Sticks View Post
    Yeah, basically. The quoted is a good summary. I just felt in order to make a thread like this it was important to supply long and boring Ti-analysis and definitions so that it wouldn't get stymied into a useless semantic monkey-debate about tacit knowledge like some threads end up becoming.
    haha, good point.

    If you see it as hard for someone to change a personality, I think that's fine. If I were to give a speculative and subjective reason why I think this to be true is that as people get older they just lose the motivation to want to change their personality. The more someone goes out of a comfort zone the more mistakes someone is going to make. If you think about it, growing up is about making a lot of mistakes, determining what you don't make mistakes at too much, and making a choice about what you want to do, and as you age you hopefully learn enough to make as little mistakes as possible in your life. It probably just becomes unproductive and unrewarding for someone to spend lots of energy to change after a certain point unless the environment changes drastically to make it necessary for survival.
    yeah, that's true. and i do agree with you in the sense that type is not necessarily 100% static. for most people, over most type spans, i imagine it is - and i like z's probability theory - but there's no logical reason to me why it should have to stay the same, besides what i feel like is a strong tendency to build on what you already have. if type were changing all the time, then it'd make less sense to bother with typology theory, but just saying "type doesn't change because it doesn't" is useless too.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Sesshoumaru's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Little_Sticks View Post
    *Please read the whole thing before criticizing; it all glues together. *I took the word definitions from online sites.



    Hypothesis:

    Psychological types are not inherent for all (i.e. are not purely genetic and given at birth) because human interpretation and understanding is too variable in its capacity to change and adapt to environmental stimuli. Personality is grown through various encouraging and discouraging aspects of the environment, which includes the direct effect of other human beings in communication and the direct effect of human force between human beings, as well as certain genetic characteristics a person may have. Types can only be applied to past timelines of a person's life and does not have to remain a constant. So the functions do exist and can be used to determine what types of judgements or information perceiving a person is doing in a given historical context and even apply types at various intervals. But to assume a current type is to propose to act as that type into the future (since the future is now), and is only such.



    Proof:

    A. Consider something such as physics and mathematics. Newton came up with basic theories that were able to merge mathematics to create laws and an understanding of basic physical characteristics that we witness in the world around us, such as F=MA. We can throw a ball and understand that it will come back down to us and use math to see how this will occur with time. Because of this we can apply this law to many things to create machines that will obey these laws and make our lives easier or more enjoyable. And because of that there are very few who (probably mostly consisting of religious zealots) would dare to obstinately and ardently crusade that these laws do not exist (above the quantum level). It's possible understanding the quantum level of what is going on could lead to an alternate understanding and use of how to manipulate things above the quantum level, but regardless of that, the physics laws we have have stood the test of time and are collectively agreed to exist and validly explain our physical world with a specific understanding of not what goes on in the quantum level of matter and the universe. In conclusion, physics (above the quantum level) is seen as the objective understanding of inanimate objects, where inanimate means that the objects do not share the intelligence applied to a life-form (where life means the condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organisms, being manifested by growth through metabolism, reproduction, and the power of adaptation to environment through changes originating internally.). From this we can say that since inanimate objects do not share any of the characteristics of a life-form to adapt to an environment that the inanimate object is opposite to a life-form and therefore lacks intelligence since it is subject to the understood and certain objective laws of physics around us (above the quantum level).

    B. Consider something such as intelligence. If we say that intelligence is the capacity for learning, reasoning, understanding, and similar forms of mental activity; aptitude in grasping truths, relationships, facts, meanings, etc, then we can say that a life-form has to have intelligence to fulfill its definition of being able to adapt. Then if we consider that inanimate objects (essentially everything else from a life-form) do not adapt (as explained in section A) then they do not have intelligence. Thus we can say that to understand a human being, or any other life-form for that matter, we can not talk about that life-form's intelligence without also talking about the environment that it struggles and adapts to. In this way, a life-form's intelligence is described and explained through its past interaction with its environment, in a historical sense. And to accurately compare the intelligence of two different life-form's one must observe them in exactly similar environments, or the comparisons are invalid. So how can we explain the differences in intelligence between two life-forms when they have exactly the same environments? Genetics.

    C. It can be said that to be a life form one must be capable of adapting to at least one environment to survive, since that is part of the definition of life we are using here. So we have the human ability to adapt to an environment through the use of a conscious intelligence that attempts to understand its environment as best it can and adapt to it. Part of that adaptation will be a result of genetics. These genetics could lead to one person understanding emotionally expressive interactions with people better than most others. Other genetics could give someone better reflexes or strength or even a photographic memory. Genetics is obviously going to be important in a person's intelligence and some people will have better talents than others as a result. But nonetheless one still has to interact with the environment to learn about and utilize the talents they have. If they aren't utilized, then they won't be apparent in a person's intelligence. And inversely, if they are utilized, they can be apparent in a person's intelligence, but may not; this is because some talents could be seen by society or maybe even the person as useless and will be suppressed or limited and not a main or easily apparent focus of a person's intelligence.

    D. What does personality have to do with intelligence? If intelligence is what describes and explains life-forms, then personality must be a frame-of-reference of a human life-form's intelligence. Thus personality is shaped by environment, as much as it is by genetics.

    Conclusion: Personality-Type can only be used to explain a person's historical behavior, and since it is dependent upon environment, it is not appropriate to suggest type as given at birth, or something set-in-stone; and to assume a type is then to propose a resolution (unconsciously or consciously) to be that type into the future.




    *I've been needing to get this out for a long damn time. I hope someone actually understands this.
    You got this right, in fact, I complained about being too rigid with the functions, and to say that some people have to be born with it, and to never change? Their view is wrong, you can always shape yourself, and in fact, that abilty to shape yourself is intelligence too. And there are some people in between, and in fact, we're all kind of in between, because we're not in the 100% of one side of our preference nor of our functions, and it's probably my point to make clear to some people here who don't think of it that way. I find myself, an INTP using both Ti and Te, because one without the other doesn't get you anywhere. Ti stays with ideas and doesn't even care about proving them. Te can't think outside the box, and doesn't even have ideas of his own. Now, if you mix both (Ti preferred as the dominant), you will be devoted to demonstrate your own ideas to the objective world, and to prove them wrong if they are, or to support them if they're right. That's the way it is, and if it isn't, somebody please prove me wrong.
    "Please don't have children, overpopulation is the real fuss of this world"-Composed by me...
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    I think it's good to remember functions are just one particular constructed model, i.e., lens through which to view personality (both established and developing). When the model is not helpful or incorrect, then you just apply a different one / look at things from another angle.

    I do think we have to start with a framework, just like cars come out of the factory with a framework. You can add things, take things off, the car will get scuffed up and beat up, but realistically the car isn't going to change its basic model... not with a LOT of work... and chances are the integrity of the frame will not be as strong as the natural bent.

    This is unavoidable... just as it is unavoidable to not learn to think in a particular language and use that as a baseline for all future thought and even learning new languages.

    Likewise, I am a human, I am not a dog. "human" is my baseline. I will never be a dog, although perhaps one day I could learn to "think like a dog" and "behave like a dog" if it is useful for me to do so. But I will never be as "dog-like" as an actual dog... will I? What is my probable bounded potential?

    In any case, the "car" example probably best describes my thoughts on the matter. Yes, we can change dramatically, but even the changes are based on (and are impacted by) what inherent qualities we rely on to navigate such changes. I think that is unavoidable.

    People who act randomly, with "total freedom" in a moment, are considered insane and not stable. They're unpredictable, and you don't want to be with someone who acts one way one moment and completely something else the next, potentially -- this is why bipolar people can be so hard to deal with, and relationships typically are impossible to maintain without stabilizing them. People are free to do whatever they wish any moment they wish... but almost uniformly they do not; they self-restrain their choice set to what seems palatable and comfortable to them... or, on occasion, necessary to do even if they are not comfortable.
    "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

  8. #8
    Senior Member Sesshoumaru's Avatar
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    Well, yeah, the framework to start with is ok, but it's being proven usless, and needs to meet the today correctly to be a real theory or universal law, and if the model is obsolete, you have to build a new one, as "engineers" that we are, we're probably the best suited for the job!
    "Please don't have children, overpopulation is the real fuss of this world"-Composed by me...
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