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  1. #1
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    Default An explanation of why academia hasn't accepted, or even tested, Psychological Types

    Jung gave us a theory. Aside from correlating the MBTI with the Big 5, academia hasn't tested it. Why?

    Academia is an outward manifestation of the mind of the J types, which have extraverted judging functions in their dominant set. This especially includes INTJ and ENTJ types.

    Jung's work Psychological Types, on the other hand, is the outward manifestation of the P types, which have introverted judging functions in their dominant set. ISTP and INTP are particularly notable instances of this.

    Some may claim that Jung was an INTJ, but this is very non-obvious. Jung didn't build out his theory using Te. He created the simplest theory in his mind that explained as much variance in his patients as possible, and then wrote it down in a book. This compressed thinking is not the style of Te. To compress vast swaths of patient behaviors into a few cognitive functions is distinctly Ti or, perhaps (conceivably), Fi. It is not Te or Fe. Not one bit.

    Here I claim that for the most part, those with dominant extraverted judging functions have relatively little insight into the workings of their own minds, as compared to those with introverted judging functions. When a *NTJ reads Psychological Types, there isn't the same introspective resonation in their minds as is achieved with a *P type, such as INTP, ISTP, INFP, INFP, ENFP, etc.

    Thus, when a classic academic type reads Psychological Types, they tend to write it off as the workings of a crank. It is yet another theory that must be tested. They have no introspective mechanism with which to distinguish it from any of the other cognitive biases that might lead one to believe in astrology. They don't have that feeling that tells them holy shit, this is actually correct. It simply does not resonate with them in the same way. They don't get it. Their mind is tuned to things in the world, not to their representation in the mind, as it is in those with introverted judging functions.

    Academia = *J
    Stream of consciousness that compresses reality into an alternate basis which seems real: *P

    Discuss.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Alea_iacta_est's Avatar
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    Interesting claim. It might be noteworthy to point out the Jung is more or less considered to have been an INFJ (though I'm sure the war being fought over that is a lot more complicated), explaining his ruminations on how he though he was close to Ni and Ti.

    As for xNTJs, I think Ni serves its role as a pseudo Ji in the dominant personality that allows the Ni user to experience a similar moment of understanding such as Ji-types, but it ultimately falls short, as it can only showcase the ulterior understanding and meaning rather than dissect it further and understand it at a higher level. (I could be entirely wrong, and I'm sure someone will point this out.)

  3. #3
    Senior Member reckful's Avatar
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    The first thing you have to clarify if you want to type Jung is: under whose system? Do you mean the result Jung would have gotten if he'd taken the MBTI or a (possibly different) type based on the cognitive functions? And if you mean the latter, are you talking about Jung's conception of the functions or the substantially different (in many respects) function descriptions/model that modern theorists like Thomson, Berens and Nardi use?

    Myers acknowledged that most Jung scholars believed that Jung thought the auxiliary function would have the same attitude as the dominant function, not the opposite attitude — and you can (in case you're interested) read a lot more about that in this two-post extravaganza. I think Myers was wrong — and the majority of Jung scholars were right — although it wasn't a very significant mistake from Myers' perspective since, although she gave the functions quite a lot of lip service in the first half of Gifts Differing, she then essentially left them behind in favor of the dichotomies.

    I think the interpretation that's most consistent with Psychological Types as a whole is that Jung's function model for a Ti-dom with an N auxiliary (for example) was really Ti-Ni-Se-Fe — with Ne being a Ti-dom's default, unconscious form of N and Ni being the form that N would take to the extent that the Ti-dom differentiated it and brought it into conscious, directed use as the auxiliary function.

    It's clear that Jung viewed himself as a "rational type" (i.e., J-dom) at the time he wrote Psychological Types (because he told us that), and I really don't think there's any doubt that means Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom at that time. And, judging by the way he described rational types (and, to a lesser extent, introverts), I suspect that the fact that he viewed himself as a Ji-dom means he would have tested as an MBTI J if he'd ever taken the MBTI. If you read through Psychological Types looking for two-kinds-of-people-in-the-world descriptions that seem to line up reasonably well with the MBTI J/P dimension, you'll mostly find them in Jung's descriptions of the J-doms and P-doms. Jung said P-doms "find fulfilment in ... the flux of events" and are "attuned to the absolutely contingent," while J-doms seek to "coerce the untidiness and fortuitousness of life into a definite pattern." He said a J-dom tends to view a P-dom as "a hodge-podge of accidentals," while a P-dom "ripostes with an equally contemptuous opinion of his opposite number: he sees him as something only half alive, whose sole aim is to fasten the fetters of reason on everything living and strangle it with judgments."

    Here's a link to Part 3 of an interview done with John Freeman when Jung (born in 1875) was 84. Forward to around 8:40 and you can watch this exchange:

    JF: Have you concluded what psychological type you are yourself?

    Jung: (chuckling) Naturally I have devoted a great deal of attention to that painful question, you know.

    JF: And reached a conclusion?

    Jung: Well, you see, the type is nothing static. It changes in the course of life. But I most certainly was characterized by thinking. I overthought from early childhood on. And I had a great deal of intuition, too. And I had definite difficulty with feeling. And my relation to reality was not particularly brilliant. I was often at variance with the reality of things. Now that gives you all the necessary data for the diagnosis.

    So Jung was clear about his N and T preferences, and was clearly introverted (as I understand it), but sheepishly confessed that he'd found his own type to be a "painful question," which suggests to me that, at least during some phase of his life, he must have wrestled with the issue of whether he was a Ti-dom with an N-aux or an Ni-dom with a T-aux — comparable (you could argue) to the confusion of all those forumites who wonder if they're INTJ or INTP.

    Because of the way he describes his preferences in the interview, he seems to be pointing to Ti-dom with N-aux, and that's the way he's most commonly typed. But if you take a look at this page, you'll see Vicky Jo's "news flash" to the effect that Jung reportedly told Stephen Abrams (a Jung scholar) in 1959 that he was an "introverted intuitive." And, in this follow-up report, Vicki Jo quotes Marie-Louise von Franz (one of Jung's prize pupils) declaring that Jung was an N-dom.

    As a side note, I think it's pretty clear Jung was Limbic (neurotic) on the Big Five dimension that doesn't have a corresponding MBTI dimension, and that he considered at least some of his neurotic characteristics part of introversion. He also viewed much of what most MBTI theorists today would tend to label the abstract/concrete component of N/S as part of I/E. So, when Jung describes "introverts" in Psychological Types, his descriptions tend to be better matches for neurotic INs than for introverts in general.

    Finally, on T/F... I think T/F's the messiest of the four MBTI dimensions, and arguably the one that's the most poorly captured in modern MBTI sources — and I think there's a strong case to be made that Jung didn't have all that good a grasp on how an F preference would tend to manifest itself in, say, a male (in particular) INFJ. It's not uncommon to read that Jung was an INFJ, and people making that claim often point to his mystical bent, among other characteristics more typically associated with NFs than NTs. I view INFJ as the second-most-likely type for Jung, and I'm also a believer — consistent, as I understand it, with quite a lot of MBTI and (especially) Big Five data — that it's possible to be sufficiently middle-ish on most, if not all, of the MBTI dimensions that an "x" is at least arguably the best label to use. So I also think it's possible that Jung was effectively an INxJ.

    If forced to choose, though, I'd choose INTJ. And, as already explained, I think that typing is consistent, rather than inconsistent, with Jung's view of himself as a Ti-dom.

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    I don't think he was an INTJ. If he were an INTJ, then academia would have given his work more serious consideration a long time ago, because academia itself is INTJ. Instead, when INTJs read his work, they don't understand it the way he does. They think it needs to be subject to the scientific method (and they gasp in despair when they realize it's not easily testable), and they don't find it intuitively obvious because they don't have the same kind of insight into themselves.

    I spend most of my time as a Ti Ni Se Fe and I am getting better at switching between Ni and Se. I think my Ni has become so dominant in me because I spent a long time studying under INTJs. And here's what I noticed: studying psychology does not seem to affect them the same way it affects me. It's like we're "building out" a theory of the mind to them, which is manifest as psychological models, whereas to me I was inwardly identifying all of these aspects of myself. I was identifying all of the neural machinery, and reconceptualizing my very self in terms of the things being learned. This changed the way I experience reality.

    Here I have generalized this claim. I'm wondering if all of the P types have more insight into themselves, in general. And I'm wondering if Ti Ni is "more of a mind" than any of the other types. Obsessed with and in tune with itself and its inner workings and inner reality more than the other types.

    Going back to the purpose of this thread, though: you have to address why academia, an outward manifestation of INTJ, continues to ignore Psychological Types. The most straightforward answer is that it was not written by an INTJ, nor was it written by a type who writes in words that resonate with an INTJ. The format, the writing, the thinking - it's all wrong to them. It's not how they would have built out a theory.

    When typing Jung, I think we should look at Psychological Types as a whole and ask ourselves what personality type created that work - and what was the process that led to the result. It seems like the workings of a man who sat in his office collecting data on his patients endlessly (Ti Se) and ruminated on that data internally, creating abstractions that explain its variance (Ti Ni) and then periodically wrote it down in huge bursts of insight (Ti Ni Se Fe). If he were an INTJ, I think the work would be much more methodical in nature, and academics would grok it immediately and test it.

  5. #5

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    @reckful you said Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom when he wrote Psychological Types, so what do you think about the Vicky Jo stuff you linked to? In saying that Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom "at the time he wrote Psychological types", do you mean to imply that he might have changed his mind about his type (or even thought of himself as having changed type) at some later time?

    From that interview, "characterized by thinking" sounds like he was saying thinking was his dominant function, but of course that's not absolutely clear. He had "a great deal of intuition" so he essentially considered himself an NT, and his "definite difficulty with feeling" is consistent with that. However, he hasn't given us "all the necessary data for the diagnosis" because he said nothing about introversion. Although, it depends what he meant by his comments about his difficulty with reality. In that context it seems logical to think he's talking about tert/inf sensation, but Jung described Si-doms' "relation to reality" as, to say the least, "not particularly brilliant", so could that be a reference to his introversion? He says, "the type is nothing static. It changes in the course of life." and his comments about his type are in the past tense, so maybe he's saying he was an introverted thinking type, but is now an introverted intuitive. But why would he tell us what his type was in the past, while saying nothing about his current type? Was he deliberately being confusing?

    Here's some of Vicky Jo's explanation:
    Quote Originally Posted by Vicky Jo
    Notice that Jung says to the interviewer he was “characterized by Thinking,” followed by his admission, “I had a great deal of intuition too.” In my experience, most INTJs are “characterized by Thinking” and less renowned for their intuition. Experienced typologists know that it’s common for introverts to be better known for their extraverted auxiliary process than their introverted dominant process. This would easily explain why Jung is “characterized” that way, even when it does not truly represent him. He goes on to say, “I had a great difficulty with Feeling”; and then emphasizes, “my relationship to reality was not particularly brilliant; I was often at variance with the reality of things” — which seems like an indication of his inferior extraverted sensing function and the struggles he had with it over his lifetime.
    Jung wouldn't have considered himself to have an extraverted auxiliary, but I can kind of see what she means in that maybe, despite being an Ni-dom, he was known more for his thinking than his intuition.

    Conclusion: um... Jung is confusing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by funtensity View Post
    Jung gave us a theory. Aside from correlating the MBTI with the Big 5, academia hasn't tested it. Why?
    This post is one "great" example of how the theory of MBTI is too easily misused.

    MBTI is *not* meant to be used to explain such trends in life. Absolutely not.

    This kind of misuse is what creates so much confusion in people's minds.


    Thus, when a classic academic type reads Psychological Types, they tend to write it off as the workings of a crank.
    No, it's a lot more complicated than that. If you have not yet, you should go learn more about how scientific research works. It's not forbidden for anyone to test Jung's theory, btw. It should be possible no problem if you get past the issue of interpreting the writings.


    It is yet another theory that must be tested.
    Let me wager this is yet another theory that's not gonna be tested. Too many of these already :head hurts:


    They have no introspective mechanism with which to distinguish it from any of the other cognitive biases that might lead one to believe in astrology. They don't have that feeling that tells them holy shit, this is actually correct. It simply does not resonate with them in the same way. They don't get it.
    Now that's a dangerous way of thinking. Introspection is well known not to be reliable or free of cognitive biases. Do read up on that too.

    Btw before you attempt to categorize me as a TJ - which I may very well be, sure -, I'm going to tell you that I am familiar with the "holy shit" feeling.

    However I'm not misled into thinking that that means anything in terms of explaining reality in a less biased way.


    Stream of consciousness that compresses reality into an alternate basis which seems real: *P
    Exactly, it SEEMS REAL. But it isn't. It's just a map.


    Quote Originally Posted by funtensity View Post
    I don't think he was an INTJ. If he were an INTJ, then academia would have given his work more serious consideration a long time ago, because academia itself is INTJ.
    And here you are using an admittedly unproven theory to support a circular argument?!

    Also consider how you replaced a lot of information with four letters several times here. A lot of information loss, including loss of relevant information to provide a proper explanation.


    Instead, when INTJs read his work, they don't understand it the way he does. They think it needs to be subject to the scientific method (and they gasp in despair when they realize it's not easily testable), and they don't find it intuitively obvious because they don't have the same kind of insight into themselves.
    Thing is, yes, it should be subject to scientific method if we want to use it for anything. If you just want to sit and philosophize about stuff, fine but don't expect scientists to follow suit. Oh and you can take Jung's work and make it testable no problem.

    As for insight into the psyche, it's still just a map, not reality. As said above.


    (...) whereas to me I was inwardly identifying all of these aspects of myself. I was identifying all of the neural machinery, and reconceptualizing my very self in terms of the things being learned. This changed the way I experience reality.
    Maybe you'll laugh if I tell you I completely relate, that's how I approached psychology. After a while I did understand what the point of models is but that doesn't change my own subjective response when reading psychology stuff. And I'm fine that way, I accept scientific method along with it, I don't find them mutually exclusive.

    See this is also what gets me upset when reading BS like scientific method equals Te and introspection equals Ti. Just NOOOOOOOO.

    Or, if you do want to choose to go with these definitions, go test the idea in reality and you will very soon run into examples that refute it.


    I spend most of my time as a Ti Ni Se Fe and I am getting better at switching between Ni and Se. I think my Ni has become so dominant in me because I spent a long time studying under INTJs.
    Lol that's interesting btw, I had a TiNi period in my life myself. I don't know why, though there were certainly some triggers. That period of my life left a certain capacity/orientation behind that I can still access and use readily but I will admit I feel better if I don't spend too much time in the TiNi mode. :/


    Going back to the purpose of this thread, though: you have to address why academia, an outward manifestation of INTJ, continues to ignore Psychological Types.
    Thing is they've got better frameworks for explaining mind stuff now. And I think that's my bottom line for this thread.


    PS. DISCLAIMER: I'm not attacking you personally so do not take it personally, I'm attacking the ideas/reasoning in this thread.

  7. #7
    Senior Member reckful's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Octavarium View Post
    @reckful you said Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom when he wrote Psychological Types, so what do you think about the Vicky Jo stuff you linked to? In saying that Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom "at the time he wrote Psychological types", do you mean to imply that he might have changed his mind about his type (or even thought of himself as having changed type) at some later time?

    From that interview, "characterized by thinking" sounds like he was saying thinking was his dominant function, but of course that's not absolutely clear. He had "a great deal of intuition" so he essentially considered himself an NT, and his "definite difficulty with feeling" is consistent with that. However, he hasn't given us "all the necessary data for the diagnosis" because he said nothing about introversion. Although, it depends what he meant by his comments about his difficulty with reality. In that context it seems logical to think he's talking about tert/inf sensation, but Jung described Si-doms' "relation to reality" as, to say the least, "not particularly brilliant", so could that be a reference to his introversion? He says, "the type is nothing static. It changes in the course of life." and his comments about his type are in the past tense, so maybe he's saying he was an introverted thinking type, but is now an introverted intuitive. But why would he tell us what his type was in the past, while saying nothing about his current type? Was he deliberately being confusing?

    Here's some of Vicky Jo's explanation:


    Jung wouldn't have considered himself to have an extraverted auxiliary, but I can kind of see what she means in that maybe, despite being an Ni-dom, he was known more for his thinking than his intuition.

    Conclusion: um... Jung is confusing.
    In saying that Jung viewed himself as a Ti-dom at the time he wrote Psychological Types, I wasn't meaning to necessarily imply that he changed his mind later. I was just emphasizing that I think the fact that he saw himself as a Ti-dom in 1921 is pretty clear from what he says in Psychological Types.

    I agree that Jung's statement to Freeman in that interview is definitely not "all the necessary data for the diagnosis" in terms of leaving out his introversion. But I've never watched that whole interview, and it may be that he'd already said one or more things that addressed his introversion.

    I realize Jung viewed Si-doms as reality-challenged, but I've always assumed that his "diagnostic" explanation to Freeman involved going through the four functions — T, then N, then F, then S — and, accordingly, that the last two sentences (about his "relation with reality") were meant to say that S was one of his two inferior functions.

    Back on the issue of whether Jung's view of his own type ever changed: As I said in my last post, the best explanation I can think of for why deciding on his type proved to be a "painful" process was that he at least seriously entertained the possibility that he was an Ni-dom, so I'm open to the idea that — as Vicky Jo's posts suggest — he may have ended up thinking of himself that way.

    In any case, to repeat a point I made in that two-part post about the auxiliary function: If you assume that the "painful" part of Jung's typing decision was the choice between Ti-dom with an N-aux and Ni-dom with a T-aux, it's worth noting that, if you assume Jung viewed the auxiliary function as having the opposite attitude to the dominant, Jung's "painful" dilemma would have involved figuring out whether he was Ti-Ne or Ni-Te, which readers of Psychological Types know Jung viewed as substantially different function pairs. By contrast, if you assume Jung viewed the auxiliary as having the same attitude as the dominant, Jung's "painful" dilemma would have involved figuring out whether he was Ti-Ni or Ni-Ti — the same two functions, and therefore a considerably more understandable source of uncertainty.

  8. #8
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    They do not have better frameworks for understanding "mind stuff" now. The MBTI / JCF is far more advanced than anything academic psychology has produced. Academia is still stuck with "theory of mind," which is an extremely shallow form of empathy that is tantamount to assuming that the other person's mind works like yours. And it is thus far incapable of creating composite descriptions of anything but terse length that explain substantial variance across people.

    I also consider the description of academia as largely an outward manifestation of INTJ to be unimpeachable. *NTJs occupy a remarkable percentage of academics, and if you were to write a type description of academia it would essentially be that of INTJ, with some other types mixed in here and there for good, but not good enough, measure. And this kind of thinking can be pulled straight out of Psychological Types: Jung sought to reconcile Freud and Adler's theories, which he considered to be outward manifestations of E/I.

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    Academia is chock full of P types. Especially in the liberal arts.

    I don't have anything to back that up other than years of experience, but, hey, that's good enough for my own tastes.

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    Modern academic psychology is not liberal arts. It's a hard science.

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