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Thread: The archetypes

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    Junior Member furbo's Avatar
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    Default The archetypes

    Since reading Keirsey, I have been bothered by the seemingly arbitrary division into archetypes. Yes, it seems to work, but why?

    After finding descriptions of the different functions, I think I may have an explanation:

    All the SP's have Se as the primary information gathering function. This leads to a focus on the here-and-now, and a certain hedonism.

    The SJ's have Si as their main information gathering function. This leads to a stronger focus on the past, as every situation is compared to past ones. This will also lead to an appreciation of consistency and tradition.

    Now, why aren't the N's divided in a similar manner? Because Ne and Ni gives the same type of output, patterns and connections, so the difference on a NJ and a NP is smaller than the difference between a SJ and a SP. On the other hand, the intuitive functions can give a broader range of outputs, allowing the decision making functions to become more important, so the difference between NF and NT becomes larger than the difference between SF and ST.

    Input are welcome, as this idea is not fully developed, and some parts needs to be expanded. And if you know a website with a good descriptions of the functions, please let me know, for some reason they are sparse (or I can't find them, anyway)

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    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    All right, the mischeviousness of this face is going to give me trouble sleeping at night...


    Anyhoo: It was ironic because I read Keirsey first, before going back and reading conventional MBTI theory and seeing that he had deviated somewhat from the standard way of breaking up the groups. I think I even saw some ST and SF groupings, rather than Keirsey's SP and SJ.

    Here is just another small way to look at it, to springboard further discussion...

    I don't think the conventional groups were quite as useful, at least in dealing with recognizing people from the outside (behaviorally). ST and NT overlap a great deal as do SF and NF (many of the latter Fe a lot -- I am thinking of the difficulty in sometimes distinguishing INFJ from ISFJ based solely on outer Fe behavior). And ST and NT can get very engineer-like/scientific in their interests and approaches.

    I think Keirsey (as a theorist) really wanted to get back to motivations, and he saw that ST and SF people actually broke down into more defined groups along the SP and SJ lines. This is probably because S is more concrete, so their motivations and desires are played out in the observable physical realm -- SP wants the freedom to act (regardless of how that freedom is expressed) and SJ wants stability and structure in order to create a firm foundation for life.

    N is more abstract in nature, so the evaluation (T/F) is much more important than implementation (as with the S's) because it determines what possibilities are actually observed.

    So I guess (and I am making this up as I go), I can see a case being made for:

    S = Implementation/Acting upon is the goal
    N = Imagining/Envisioning is the goal

    For S, SP vs SJ offers the larger distinction, and motivations are carried out in the physical realm.

    For N, NF vs NT offers the larger distinction, and motivations are expressed in the intangible imagination realm.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    All right, the mischeviousness of this face is going to give me trouble sleeping at night...
    Mischeviousness isn't the word. Frightening is more like it. Furbo, were you in the film "Children of the Corn?"

    I think the classifications are somewhat arbitrary. I could see one grouping the ENFP, ENTP, ESFP and ESTP as a category rather than artisan/rational etc. I do think the classification have merit, just that there would be other ways to separate them out in groups as well, beyond the standard archetypes.

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    Junior Member furbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meanlittlechimp View Post
    I think the classifications are somewhat arbitrary. I could see one grouping the ENFP, ENTP, ESFP and ESTP as a category rather than artisan/rational etc. I do think the classification have merit, just that there would be other ways to separate them out in groups as well, beyond the standard archetypes.
    I agree that Kierseys archetypes are not the only classifications which have merit, but I do think they are the most usefull (though this may be beause I have studied Kiersey more than the other classifications).

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    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by furbo View Post
    Since reading Keirsey, I have been bothered by the seemingly arbitrary division into archetypes. Yes, it seems to work, but why?
    I'm not so sure that it does always work. For instance, I identify most strongly with the Melancholic temperment, and Keirsey assigns that to SJ thinking. I thought for a long time that I was an SJ, because I was so concerned with following rules, and doing what my teachers expected of me.

    I eventually realized that I was more likely an N, because I didn't rely so much on what was going around me to determine what the rules were, but on my own interpretation of the Student Handbook, and an internal notion that by attending school, I was agreeing to a sort of social contract, and that behaving irresponsibly would be a violation of it. I was also very concerned with my teacher's opinion of me, and didn't want the stigma of being a troublemaker. I was far more afraid of the stigma than of the actual punishment.

    What really proved it for me was when I realized that I didn't value traditions or rituals for their own sake, and had no desire to provide service. I cared about fulfilling responsibilities in a timely manner once they were assigned, but I tended to take on as few as possible.

    I was later able to explain this by the fact that F's were often concerned with the opinions of others and are respectful of hierarchy, and that timeliness and order were important to all J's. So for me, the four archetype system only led to confusion.
    Last edited by Athenian200; 07-06-2007 at 04:57 PM. Reason: correcting spelling: lead used in past tense should be led.

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    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    I'm not so sure that it does always work. For instance, I identify most strongly with the Melancholic temperment, and Keirsey assigns that to SJ thinking. I thought for a long time that I was an SJ, because I was so concerned with following rules, and doing what my teachers expected of me.
    Usually the Melancholic temperament has been assigned to the SJ archetype in early personality systems (I'm thinking of LaHaye's sort of hackneyed job back in the 1970's). I like Keirsey's four archetypes much better than the humours, they seem to be more accurate clusters or at least include more people within their umbrellas.

    Yes, based on what you said, I would come up with INFJ (the N) ... there are similarities to ISFJ, except for the fact that the structures are arbitrary to you. This is a huge difference between ISFJ and INFJ; I find that there is lots of overlap behavior-wise, but in terms of perception and they approach the intrinsic value of structure and rules, they are very much different.

    (Si, if it believes in the structure, sees it as the Ideal and you obey simply because it's the "best world" and other things are not true; Ni sees a multiplicity of structure, and the rules are rather arbitrary, being followed only when they are appropriate or have value. The value comes from the person and the value they PLACE on the rules, not from the rules themselves.)

    ... btw, i was playing around today and looked at the Chinese Zodiac link in your sig. I am a Female Water / Black Rabbit. Woo hoo.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    I dunno, sometimes I see the Melancholic temperament assigned to NF and Phlegmatic assigned to SJ.

    Some sources consider Melancholic temperament to be the artistic and dreamy temperament, which I can more easily see fitting in with NF.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uberfuhrer View Post
    I dunno, sometimes I see the Melancholic temperament assigned to NF and Phlegmatic assigned to SJ.
    I don't know, I haven't seen that. I usually see Phlegmatic given to P's (usually SP's).

    And that is one large problem. The four humours don't really cover the whole range of people easily, or at least not usefully, in a predictive nature. No one seems to fit very well into any of the four categories.

    Some sources consider Melancholic temperament to be the artistic and dreamy temperament, which I can more easily see fitting in with NF.
    Well, that was the problem. The Melancholy was given both artistic/depressive/moody behavior (INF) as WELL as anal meticulous behavior (ISJ). Already there's some confusion. The depression/moodiness seems to now be more reflective of ISFJ, where they get moody/depressed usually out of cynicism over their lives not being the way they wanted them to be, while still preserving the anal detailed elements. This is not really the "artistic temperament," which is much more ethereal, and the artist gets no other choice out of the four temperaments.

    And the Choleric came off as the high strung leading type (ESJ? STJ? TJ?).

    And the Sanguine was the athletic ESP? IS? type.

    And the Phlegmatic was the P type.

    Perhaps I just have not seen good descriptions of the humours. As you can tell, the ones I have seen were very abysmal and useless as far as differentiation goes.

    Do you have any idea of what a decent variation would be on the humours?
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Senior Member wildcat's Avatar
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    Here are the descriptions.
    Now, this is s church thing. Something for the priests.
    All the books in the market about the humours are written by the priests.

    It is not at all hard to understand.
    People are their profession.
    They need to understand and they strive to understand people.

    The Catholics are especially involved here. There are some good books around written by the Fathers.
    Also the protestant priests have written books about the humours. Some of them have sold widely, especially in Europe.

    The priests watch people throughout their careers. Some of them a keen observers.

    http://users.churchserve.com/mi/jesu.../Choleric.html

    The other humours are in the left column.

    I should be interested to know how you guys see them fit the MBTI?

    Are there any parallels?

    Maybe it is just honky tonky.

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