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  1. #1
    Fair and Square Flatlander's Avatar
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    Default Survey: Dominant Function and Childhood Motivations/Reasons for Development

    For those of you who can reason it out:

    Why do you think you developed the dominant function you did? What impulses or reasons led to it? What, if anything, did it have to do with your inferior?
    Thinking must serve the thinker.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Entropic's Avatar
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    I wish I knew. I can't remember my childhood well enough to answer that question but the death of my mother might have played a role, making me overall more introspective and thus favoring an introverted ego attitude. As to why judging over perceiving I don't know. I can't find a rational explanation for that, nor why I prefer intuition over sensation. I did explore the sense-world a lot as a child as my family brought me out to the woods and such to pick mushrooms or similar, but at some point I just started to reject that perspective all together. I found the outside physical world so irrelevant. I was more concerned about what was going on in my own head than what was going on around me. I also read a lot of fiction as a child, many of them written with a fantastical point of view, often fairy tale-like in structure. I felt inspired reading these stories and I wondered about the worlds they created, what it was like to live in these worlds or be one of the characters.

    I guess in a way for me, it created a sense of control because I couldn't control the world around me that ultimately felt very irrational. You can't control whether you get sick and die, you can't control whether the family dog is hit by a car but I can control what's going on in my mind. I was quite interested in creating my own worlds as a child as well where I am god and I have absolute control. If anything I feel this perhaps reflects the 5 mentality moreso than intuition though.

    I could rationalize that perhaps I preferred dominant judgement and feeling because it helped me to sort out my feelings at a time in my life no one would provide such relief for me, but I am uncertain as to the validity of this reasoning.

    I was waiting for the day you and I would meet.

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  3. #3
    Senior Member madhatter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flatlander View Post
    For those of you who can reason it out:

    Why do you think you developed the dominant function you did? What impulses or reasons led to it? What, if anything, did it have to do with your inferior?
    I'm not sure. I don't believe in the complete "blank slate", but I think it's a combination of nature and nurture. I believe I had natural tendencies for introverted judgment that my upbringing and environment allowed to flourish. But I'm not sure if I was naturally introverted thinking from the beginning or if that came later. But, by rifling through my memories (my earliest memory dates back to when I was three), I can't remember when I haven't been an introverted thinker.

    I was always a quiet and laid-back child, but also very independent and low maintenance. I always wanted to do everything myself. I had incredible concentration even at a very young age. I could sit by myself for hours, playing or listening to my mom read to me and my siblings. My mom is Ni-dominant, and she said as a child she was very spacey and in her own world. But she said that while I was in my own world too, I was always very focused.

    For as long as I can remember, I've been fascinated in how things work and why things are the way they are. I collected rocks, leaves, coins, shells. I had books on the classification of trees and stars, and my mom bought me these treasure chest books about Ancient China, Egypt, Greece and Rome. They had maps which had stickers that you had to find the right outline on the map to match to, and the Greece and Egypt ones had cipher wheels with the different alphabets or symbologies. I poured over these for hours at a time, and drew charts, and started created secret alphabets of my own. (I actually can pinpoint the beginning of my fascination with Linguistics to this). I would create stories in my head about what was like to live in those times. I had books about things like castles or the Titanic, about how they were built. My favorite part was the cross-section and the break-down of all the parts of the structure. I thrived on these things. My childhood was one rich with ideas and stories.

    My introverted nature was encouraged; everyone in my immediate family is an introvert. I've never been particularly emotive nor had a lot of friends. My quiet nature did not serve me well in this case, and I've always marveled at the ease which everyone else seemed to travel through the world of relationships. This has followed me and my continued misadventures in this area have reinforced my aversion to it. Being detached and keeping to myself were not conducive to forming connections. In fact, I had such reign over my emotions, or perhaps avoidance of them, that, when I was 12 and had seemingly developed extreme anger issues out of the blue, it completely blind-sided my mom.

  4. #4
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    My current assessment is that we are born with our strongest preferences, just as we are born with a hand preference. The evidence for this is still sketchy but increasing. Nurture or environment can either work to reinforce these natural tendencies, or to suppress them. This creates the significant variation across each MB (and enneagram) type. Put otherwise: nature puts certain tools in our toolbox, and NURTURE shows us how to use them.
    Last edited by Coriolis; 04-22-2013 at 08:40 AM. Reason: fixed wrong word
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  5. #5
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    I've had a life-long relationship with death. No that's not a joke. My dad wanted to abort me, my mom refused, he actually beat her while she was pregnant, we both survived it, later she had bleeding and had to be sedentary for much of her pregnancy, I was born two weeks late and had dry skin/jaundice, then my mom (how nice of her) waited until after I was born before she had a nervous breakdown and I was left with my (thankfully deeply caring and stable) grandparents.

    However I almost died of a fever around 18 months/2 yrs, I don't remember it, but my grandfather spoke of it several times, like he was seriously afraid they were going to lose me.

    Then at four I fell down the back stairs ...fortunately only needed three stitches, but it was a major outdoor fall for a four year old.

    Then my grandmother, one of my primary caregivers, died about a month before my 6th birthday.

    The first boy I ever kissed committed suicide.

    I was pregnant once (as an adult) and had a late-term miscarriage.

    I believe these formative events gave me a deep and abiding sense of feeling/ethics and also a really tenacious grasp on to experiencing and living.

    In more mundane terms, I have exceedingly clear sensory memories of my childhood (probably Se), and was considered very sensitive (Fi) starting around school age.

  6. #6
    Away with the fairies Southern Kross's Avatar
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    Sorry, I think the functions are primarily (or likely, entirely) innate.
    INFP 4w5 so/sp

    I've dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas;
    they've gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the colour of my mind.

    - Emily Bronte

  7. #7
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flatlander View Post
    For those of you who can reason it out:

    Why do you think you developed the dominant function you did? What impulses or reasons led to it? What, if anything, did it have to do with your inferior?
    I don't think I "developed" my dominant function, or the auxiliary for that matter. Perhaps if you have a dominant or auxiliary function that "fits in" better with at least a margin or even a majority of others around you, it might appear that you developed that function during childhood.

    However, from personal experience, I can assuredly tell you that if I could have developed Se or Fe or Te earlier in childhood, I would have. Not only as a result of being surrounded by those function perspectives, but by the awareness of my marked lack of them.

    Additionally, from personal experience as a mother, I can also assure you that the babies I have borne came out with their own personalities right from the get-go.

    So, based on recent research and my own anecdotal evidence, I subscribe to the model that we are born with the wiring we are born with.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

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