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Thread: Ni - What the hell is it?

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    Filthy Apes! Array Kalach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sherlock Holmes View Post
    Kalach, Ni would have to interact with the world in some way. It helps provide clarity of your thinking process, to determine what Je fits with your "ideas of what is real" or whatever, and it also has to take it in from somewhere. My guess is that it takes it in from Ne. Ni users obviously don't have much Ne, but everyone has some, so my guess is that when an Ni user makes a connection, it is added to the network (so it's not 'static', it builds up over time and can be changed gradually). Because it does not react to current events, but rather takes it's ideas from previous experience, like Si, it works better with familiar concepts or at least concepts that can be related to familiar ideas. I'll change my perspective on this if anyone has some evidence to the contrary, but the more I think about this, the more it seems to fit into the way Ni users act. It has an immediate frame of reference, and is thus faster acting, but since it needs to shift it to apply to the situation, the result may be somewhat vague and difficult to explain in comparison to an Ne Ji more slow but defnitive method.
    LIEZ!

    Though the question of how information gets into Ni is a curly one. Luckily hubris will come to our rescue, in the form of however much distress I can cause by pointing out that if Ni is essentially dependent on some crippled Ne, then booyah INTPs, eat Te dust.

    The ability of an introverted function to reflect the real world is genuinely different from how that introverted function is to acquire representations. It seems to make sense to suggest that there is raw information and there is information as it appears to and in cognitive function space. Unless I'm mistaken, it's fairly well known that human nervous systems are bombarded with far more raw information than is actually ever attended to. From there it's a very short step to observe that however information is getting inside these introverted functions, once there it's as if it was always there. I suspect it is not appropriate to say, for example, INTJs get access to the real world via Se. It is appropriate to say that when INTJs are accessing the real world, they're attending to such aspects of it as fall under the purview of Se. But for actually collecting basic information.... is reading a book an example of Se? It can't possibly be other than incidentally, because the information being taken in is ideas and whatever else gets evoked by words. The information taken only incidentally includes the texture of the page, the font of the printing, the color of the ink, the weight of the book as it moves from hand to hand.... Probably it is better to say that, for example an INTJ reader, is dealing with the content of the book as if it were already Ni/Te(/Fi) subject matter. Instant translation. The eyes are open, and the brain is doing what it always does, stealing ideas away from the objective world. For an INTJ, Ne has no place in this story. The ideas don't arise from interaction with the world. They are first transported away from the world and only after that can they begin to be interacted with. We are after all talking of preferred kinds of cognition, which is a layer of structure over and above raw biological input (and output).

    Since Ni is subjective, it matters not a wit how close or far what's inside is from the external world. But since Ni works in tandem with something else or not at all, then other priorities will also come into play. An objectivity requirement will be included as some kind of priority. Any and all of Te, Fe and Se will make this a priority (in different ways) for the person. Whatever goes on in the Ni realm will NOT work for the person unless it bears some relationship to those other functions. Se for example, even sitting way down in inferior position for an INTJ, will exert some influence on how Ni functions.

    But all that is type dynamics and one big Pffft for the moment since we have yet to discover how or what goes on inside Ni.

    Various commentators have suggested Ni is one kind of memory. I dislike this suggestion since I don't consciously use Ni as a source of reflection on the past. "Memory" does not seem to be the right word. It certainly doesn't capture the sense of moderately heedless forward movement one "feels". But that forward attention isn't heedless at all. It is attention built on preconceived notions, the "memory" aspect of Ni, where past events have been gone over, abstracted from, turned into supposedly timeless implicative "memories", useable at later times for determination of "what will come next". or "what should come next". Dear reader, don't turn up your nose at the obvious subjectivity. But, surely we must, mustn't we? How can some past event tell you what to do in the future? How can it be anything other than some plain, even severe, limitation on what's possible? This mystical function surely is as close minded as a stone--how can it possibly be called future focused if all it does is recycle the past? Where is possibility? Where is that essence of all notions of intuition in this story? Where?
    Bellison uncorked a flood of horrible profanity, which, translated, meant, "This is extremely unusual."

    Boy meets Grr

  2. #332
    Consulting Detective Array Mr. Sherlock Holmes's Avatar
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    Well you can to some degree predict what is likely to happen because occurences are cause and effect, and thus patterns. This causes this which causes this. Then you can abstract that to a current or future situation. Rather than static data, these patterns are what I propose the Ni user exhibits. I do not understand why you continue to try and disagree with me by turning it into some bizarre philosophical mystery, and yet your last pararap is suggestive (though rather nonspecific) of exactly what I am saying. Also, I realise Se must be taking in information, as this is of course the only way to absorb information, but the only way you can absorb abstract concepts and connections is by using Ne with this Se. Without Ne, someone would not be able to comprehend any information they absorb. Both functions are required for absorbing information, and everyone has them, it's simply a matter of which you focus on. Because the Ni users have weaker Ne, they may not have that same momentary ingenuity as Ne users, but it will accumulate so that they have greater access to predict patterns from memory, in the same way that Se users have better ability to absorb information in the present, but Si users are better at bringing information up from the past. And Ne users to will have some ability to recall Ni patterns, simply not as great an ability as the Ni user.

    So, in short, the intuition is there, but it's OLD intuition. It's not about creating new ideas, it's about adjusting old ideas to suit the present. By the way, why must we eat the dust because your function requires our function to work? Our Si function relies on some crippled Se, so booyah, INTJs, eat the dust.
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  3. #333
    Consulting Detective Array Mr. Sherlock Holmes's Avatar
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    Oh and I wouldn't imagine it would seem like memory because it's a sort of subconscious 'understanding' memory, rather than the conscious data recall.
    JiNe
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    "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."

    "It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

  4. #334
    Filthy Apes! Array Kalach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sherlock Holmes View Post
    By the way, why must we eat the dust because your function requires our function to work?
    Dude, really? Because there's nothing in the descriptions so far that limits the dependence of i functions on e functions to the Ni/Ne case. Ergo, Ti is Te's sluggardly cousin.

    So, still happy with the claim that Ni needs Ne?

    Well you can to some degree predict what is likely to happen because occurences are cause and effect, and thus patterns. This causes this which causes this.
    Pffft. Introverted perception is getting a whole lot of extra functional roles in this discussion. Ergo, the discussion is wrong. (My intuition tells me that or my basic imperative that "there be something behind what's going on" tells me that.... and is there any difference between those two?)

    That's why it is necessary to make this into a big mystery, and not in the least philosophical a mystery. Well, maybe it rests on a philosophical position, like there is a distinction to be drawn between a thing and the role that thing plays. If, for instance, there is some reasonable description of what Ni does within itself, then all this tenuous stuff about waiting and seeing the future and just knowing can be dispensed with.

    Also, I realise Se must be taking in information, as this is of course the only way to absorb information....
    It's the only way to absorb physical information as that information presents itself in the moment. And using the verb "absorb" is misleading. If it were not misleading, there would be no meaning to the technical term Si. One does not directly absorb. I believe instead one processes raw input streams, selecting and ignoring according to one or more chosen perspectives. Se and Si, for instance, work on exactly the same raw input stream, but select and ignore according to different terms.

    Thus, no function is especially dependent upon any other function for anything except inasmuch as--*deep breath*--no function exists without consciousness and no consciousness exists without a dynamic balance between perspectives and imperatives.

    Tangent: no function exists without consciousness or no function exists without whatever it is that consciousness rests on (often called the unconscious but in light of the supposed existence of the universal unconscious perhaps better called merely "the foundation")? Pffft, whatever.

    Soo, what does Ni do? (And thus, what is Ni?)

    The conscious aspect doesn't seem especially past-related, although if called out on the origin of one's "intuitions" one will probably start with a recounting of earlier incidents that were suggestive.... it's notable however that one will also very, very likely include handwaving and huffing in an attempt to indicate that the intuition didn't come only from there--something else intervened to make the intuition into what it is now. Probably just a process of abstraction. Abstraction of what? Such content as was abstractable. And since Ni is subjective, what counts as abstractable, that's to say, what one is aware of as content, depends in some considerable part on what has come before. But not completely. There is still the abstraction engine. The thing that started working even before experiences where had. (Or did it?) The subjective impression is that the ability to abstract is prior to experience. Experience surely informs the process, sharpens the skill and broadens its reach, or perhaps deepens its dig. But the process "feels" prior to the experience.

    How can that be? Easy. The goal of all subjective functions is the return to zero. The complete removal of objective data. If the process required as part of its definition that objective data exist, it'd be schizophrenic.

    Meh, so what? One still hasn't given up much of a description of what this abstraction process consists in.

    One is getting there. If one were stuck on detail, one would have presented detail. If one instead is concerned with the overarching connection of all to all (which is to say, the zero), then one is long-winded.
    Bellison uncorked a flood of horrible profanity, which, translated, meant, "This is extremely unusual."

    Boy meets Grr

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalach View Post
    Dude, really? Because there's nothing in the descriptions so far that limits the dependence of i functions on e functions to the Ni/Ne case. Ergo, Ti is Te's sluggardly cousin.

    So, still happy with the claim that Ni needs Ne?
    The Pi functions , yes. Everyone knows Si is about storing data. Si doesn't take in data. That's Se. Of course someone looking at a brick isn't using Se unless they think "There is a brick". Si then stores the memory so they know "This is what a brick is." Honestly no functions can work by themselves. Everyone has to use every function as they all play a role. Pi functions aren't about noticing things in the real world. They are about looking in and coming up with something from ourselves.

    Pffft. Introverted perception is getting a whole lot of extra functional roles in this discussion. Ergo, the discussion is wrong. (My intuition tells me that or my basic imperative that "there be something behind what's going on" tells me that.... and is there any difference between those two?)

    That's why it is necessary to make this into a big mystery, and not in the least philosophical a mystery. Well, maybe it rests on a philosophical position, like there is a distinction to be drawn between a thing and the role that thing plays. If, for instance, there is some reasonable description of what Ni does within itself, then all this tenuous stuff about waiting and seeing the future and just knowing can be dispensed with.
    What? So basically you're afraid of the possibilty that the mysticality of your function will be lost if you come up with some reasonable explanation of it? The discussionis not wrong by bringing other functions into play in how Ni works. Like I said, each function serves an individual purpose, but they cannot function fully without the other functions. Ni looks inwards. Ergo, it cannot absorb information directly from the outside world without first using an extraverted percieving function to get it.

    It's the only way to absorb physical information as that information presents itself in the moment. And using the verb "absorb" is misleading. If it were not misleading, there would be no meaning to the technical term Si. One does not directly absorb. I believe instead one processes raw input streams, selecting and ignoring according to one or more chosen perspectives. Se and Si, for instance, work on exactly the same raw input stream, but select and ignore according to different terms.
    Absorb is a word which here means "take in". Si doesn't "take in" information. It stores it and recalls it. There is a need for the term Si as Se does not draw from previously accessed data itself. Se and Si don't select at all. They bring information forward. The judgement functions make the selection because they are judging.

    Thus, no function is especially dependent upon any other function for anything except inasmuch as--*deep breath*--no function exists without consciousness and no consciousness exists without a dynamic balance between perspectives and imperatives.

    Tangent: no function exists without consciousness or no function exists without whatever it is that consciousness rests on (often called the unconscious but in light of the supposed existence of the universal unconscious perhaps better called merely "the foundation")? Pffft, whatever.
    Of course they do. What exactly would someone do if their only function was say Fi? How would that actually DO anything? They would be able to create their own values, right? Based on what?

    Soo, what does Ni do? (And thus, what is Ni?)

    The conscious aspect doesn't seem especially past-related, although if called out on the origin of one's "intuitions" one will probably start with a recounting of earlier incidents that were suggestive.... it's notable however that one will also very, very likely include handwaving and huffing in an attempt to indicate that the intuition didn't come only from there--something else intervened to make the intuition into what it is now. Probably just a process of abstraction. Abstraction of what? Such content as was abstractable. And since Ni is subjective, what counts as abstractable, that's to say, what one is aware of as content, depends in some considerable part on what has come before. But not completely. There is still the abstraction engine. The thing that started working even before experiences where had. (Or did it?) The subjective impression is that the ability to abstract is prior to experience. Experience surely informs the process, sharpens the skill and broadens its reach, or perhaps deepens its dig. But the process "feels" prior to the experience.
    There is no proof here that the abstraction of Ni is actually prior to experience (although this theory of collective consciousness could provide some sort of preset Ni framewrk in all people, possibly), unless of course you remember abstracting in a specifically Ni way at the exact moment you were born, which I somehow doubt. "Feels" really is NOT an accurate way to assess something scientific. My theory already covers the reason why it would not "feel" memory based. It is collecting information from your subconcious, which is, surprise surprise, not concious, so how COULD you notice it? And yes it abstracts. It abstracts it's own network of connections and concepts, rather than what is found in the external environment.

    How can that be? Easy. The goal of all subjective functions is the return to zero. The complete removal of objective data. If the process required as part of its definition that objective data exist, it'd be schizophrenic.
    I assume you mean "outside data" rather than "Data not swayed by how I feel about it" when you say objective, as there's no reason a percieving function couldn't use information that you hadn't altered by your own feelings.

    Meh, so what? One still hasn't given up much of a description of what this abstraction process consists in.

    One is getting there. If one were stuck on detail, one would have presented detail. If one instead is concerned with the overarching connection of all to all (which is to say, the zero), then one is long-winded.
    Not a clue what this means. If you have any logical reasoning to put forward,please do, and I will consider accordingly, but you are simply stating that you do not feel comfortable with this technical rendering of your mystical attribute, and seem to be rejecting it on that basis. I suppose that must be your Ni telling you that, but perhaps you know that is possible for Ni to be wrong. I'm afraid I do not have tha magical power of Ni, so please give evidence that makes sense to us lesser beings.
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    "When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."

    "It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

  6. #336
    Filthy Apes! Array Kalach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sherlock Holmes View Post
    What? So basically you're afraid of the possibilty that the mysticality of your function will be lost if you come up with some reasonable explanation of it?
    Other way 'round. If there's not merely a reasonable explanation but an accurate description, then I AND EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD WILL KNOW WHY I AM ALWAYS RIGHT! This will be the basis of my empire. No good empire was ever built on only the myth of infallibility, such myths must be augmented by violence. But if the FACT of infallibility were established, people would bow down naturally.
    Bellison uncorked a flood of horrible profanity, which, translated, meant, "This is extremely unusual."

    Boy meets Grr

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sherlock Holmes View Post
    Absorb is a word which here means "take in". Si doesn't "take in" information. It stores it and recalls it. There is a need for the term Si as Se does not draw from previously accessed data itself. Se and Si don't select at all. They bring information forward. The judgement functions make the selection because they are judging.
    Let's consider. I see all the functions as filters of one kind or another, you seem to see them as standing in a quite substantial relationship with the information they address, they have territories and thus definition. This does make the interior world really very sickly though, you know? Unless one is lucky enough to have a Pe fairly high in consciousness, whatever one ends up having on the inside comes in largely unconsciously, mostly unprocessed by the higher functions.... pffft, it sounds silly, like Se is a robot mailman function and the introverted board of directors is sitting in the penthouse waiting on deliveries.

    There is some important distinction to be made between conscious and unconscious functions here. My first intuition on the topic is that functions can be clearly defined when they're conscious. When they're unconscious, something else is afoot. Conscious attention goes naturally, it seems, to particular channels. Consciously attending seems perhaps to be part of what gives functions a clear definition: if you're focusing on S, then you genuinely do force other content out of consciousness, by choice, by action, by attention.... it seems. But unconscious functioning.... of which it seems there is a lot... how clearly delineated are the function structures there? How insistent can "the functions" be on what kind of content goes where?

    There is no proof here that the abstraction of Ni is actually prior to experience [...]
    No, of course. The claim of priority arises from subjectivity. If the person using the function did not somehow think their working was prior to objective data, their function couldn't be called subjective. So one wonders if this claim of priority should be accepted. The conundrum: accept the users' word and assert that i functions are fundamentally independent of the world or note down the users' words and see if it shows anything about how the function actually works?

    "Feels" really is NOT an accurate way to assess something scientific.
    No, but in the case of discussion of a subjective function in a person who also, according to theory at least, is possessed of a subjective judgment function, it is an indication that some determination has been made. If I say "feel" then I'm appealing to the more naturally that way oriented judgment function to allow myself to place emphasis on things I think are true. If I'm seeking truth of what's inside me, I'll eschew my normal truth language and take up the other "truth" language, Fi.

    Fe people do it too. When they say "I feel we should...." or "I feel like it's not that way at all..." etc.
    Bellison uncorked a flood of horrible profanity, which, translated, meant, "This is extremely unusual."

    Boy meets Grr

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    I am now bored of this topic.
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    "It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

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    Filthy Apes! Array Kalach's Avatar
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    LOL


    Yes, it does go on some.
    Bellison uncorked a flood of horrible profanity, which, translated, meant, "This is extremely unusual."

    Boy meets Grr

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Sherlock Holmes View Post
    The Pi functions , yes. Everyone knows Si is about storing data. Si doesn't take in data. That's Se. Of course someone looking at a brick isn't using Se unless they think "There is a brick". Si then stores the memory so they know "This is what a brick is." Honestly no functions can work by themselves. Everyone has to use every function as they all play a role. Pi functions aren't about noticing things in the real world. They are about looking in and coming up with something from ourselves.
    I believe these concepts diverge significantly from what Jung was saying about cognitive functions.

    Se doesn't "take in data." Si doesn't "recall data." F doesn't "feel." T doesn't "think." These are typological labels that use old words in new ways, in order to provide an intuitive understanding of each. Rather, they are predispositions. As one "differentiates" or develops functions, one is not "using them more," but rather is developing a new way of understanding/perceiving/processing.

    ENxPs having Se as their 8th function doesn't mean they're legally blind (though humor may be had at their expense in this regard), it means that they don't process what they sense in an "Se way." The "Se way" is much more than thinking, "There is a brick": it's being aware of everything around you and comprehending/appreciating it in a "concrete" (as opposed to "abstract") way, that not only is there a brick, but it's red and heavy and rough and makes a particular sound when you hit it and has a smell that most people won't notice, but you do, and everything about the brick says "brick" to you, and it is no more and no less than a brick, with no significant preconceptions about what a brick should be or could be. (run-on sentence intentional - all of these concepts are "just there" for one with a strongly developed Se)

    "There is a brick," doesn't reflect one's understanding of the brick.



    What? So basically you're afraid of the possibilty that the mysticality of your function will be lost if you come up with some reasonable explanation of it? The discussionis not wrong by bringing other functions into play in how Ni works. Like I said, each function serves an individual purpose, but they cannot function fully without the other functions. Ni looks inwards. Ergo, it cannot absorb information directly from the outside world without first using an extraverted percieving function to get it.
    Other functions do come into play with respect to how Ni works, but I don't believe they do so in the manner you suggest. Assume we're discussing an Ni dom. Then here are some possible ways other functions can affect Ni:
    1. Strong Te: Ni tends to process things in terms of objective, logical considerations, but not considering people/feelings as useful data.
    2. Strong Fe: Ni tends to process things in terms of people and interactions with people, but not so much in terms of logistical processes.
    3. No strong Te or Fe: Ni instead resorts to subjective judgment, either Ti or Fi, and one's type is more difficult to determine. Strong Ti will often make an INFJ self-type as an INTJ, and strong Fi will often make an INTJ self-type as an INFJ, for instance.
    4. Ni with no other well-differentiated functions: this Ni can be almost hopelessly abstract. There is usually some minor Te or Fe tendency such that one can determine type, but it isn't developed. Ideas are expressed in an extremely abstract way, with little concrete expression to ground them.
    5. Ni with several other well-differentiated functions: only found in older INxJs, if at all. Each function has weight with Ni, and one's intuition is altered accordingly. Fe/Te is still a primary consideration, but should that not yield results in a timely manner, Ti/Fi come in as backup. Se also comes into play, but it's more of an Ni/Se, where Ni doesn't completely go away, but it now has a greater awareness of "the real world." These INxJs tend to have unique characteristics that can make them difficult to type, since they're more "Fe/Ti" or "Te/Fi" than just Fe or Te. The tertiary function tends to "color" the personality with unique patterns, depending on how it came to be developed.


    Se plays a role, but it's mostly subconscious until developed (much) later in life, yet young INxJs are perfectly capable of perceiving the world around themselves. They just tend to prefer their inner worlds. In conventional MBTI, it is Fe or Te that comes in to provide a "balance" to Ni, mostly by filtering out poor intuitions and training good intuitions.


    Absorb is a word which here means "take in". Si doesn't "take in" information. It stores it and recalls it. There is a need for the term Si as Se does not draw from previously accessed data itself. Se and Si don't select at all. They bring information forward. The judgement functions make the selection because they are judging.
    Si doesn't store information. The brain stores information. Se and Si (and Ne and Ni) are about "where your brain looks for information". Si means "concrete subjective," i.e., one tends to look for and recall one's subjective impressions of concrete reality. Se tends to look for current concrete input. Ne looks for current abstract input: an idea is as much an external object to Ne as a brick, but the brick brings up abstract brick ideas to link with other extroverted ideas. Ni looks at abstract subjective impressions, rather than concrete ones. For example, Ni remembers "meaning," and has a talent for saying things one has heard/read "in one's own words," but tends to do poorly when remembering the exact words. Si tend to recall the exact words and go from there. Si tends to be associated with "memory" because when well-developed it is exceptionally good at what most people consider to be "memorizing," namely memorizing specific facts and data, but it is not memory itself.

    I would argue that all of the introverted (subjective) functions are essentially invocations of "memory." So not just Si, but Ni and Ti and Fi. In the Ti and Fi cases, the "memory" happens at the point of judgment, not the point of perception. I'd love to expand on this idea, but it requires its own post.

    As for "selecting", I would argue that the perceiving functions do select, just as much as the judging functions do. It is the means of selection that is different. The judging functions make deliberate ("rational") selections, while the perceiving functions make "irrational" selections without conscious effort. One's perceiving functions "select" by tending to look at things in a particular way: what one sees determines that to which one may apply one's judgment.

    Of course they do. What exactly would someone do if their only function was say Fi? How would that actually DO anything? They would be able to create their own values, right? Based on what?

    Soo, what does Ni do? (And thus, what is Ni?)
    Check out my description above for an Ni dom with no other well-developed functions. I would speculate that "just Fi" for an Fi-dom would be similar in many ways, with a predisposition to process everything in terms of a subjective, holistic vision, but generally unable to express one's ideas in a concrete, understandable manner. Values based on what? Assuming my parallel with Ni is valid, they'd be values based on background noise, essentially. They wouldn't be coherent, at least not such that one would be able to communicate them easily. It isn't that there is no input, no perception; rather, there is no extroverted function to connect the values in a meaningful way to the outside world. There would be a "subconscious" Ne or Se, but by virtue of being undifferentiated, it doesn't serve to ground the Fi values in reality, the result being an extremely introverted Fi dom.

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