Disclaimer: This essay inquires only into the unconscious tendencies of the ENTJ type and not into personalities frequently associated with this persona. Or in other words, I am merely trying to describe the unconscious tendencies of the ENTJ and have no interest in people and personalities in possession of this type.
Extroversion: The attitude of defining the self by external standards. Seeks conformity to the external world.
Introversion: The attitude of defining the self by internal standards, seeks to persuade the world to conform to the inner vision.
Thinking: Utilization impersonal criteria for decision-making.
Feeling: Utilization of an interpersonal criteria for decision making.
Intuition: Unconscious faculty of abstract collection of information.
Sensation: Unconscious faculty of concrete collection of information.
“As a consequence of the general attitude of extroversion, thinking is oriented by the object and objective data. This gives rise to a noticeable peculiarity. Thinking in general is fed on the one hand from subjective and in the last resort unconscious sources, and on the other hand from objective data transmitted by sense-perception. Extraverted Thinking is conditioned in a larger measure by the latter than by the former. Judgment always presupposes a criterion; for the extroverted judgment, the criterion supplied by external conditions is the valid and determining one, no matter whether it be represented directly by an objective , perceptible by fact or by an objective idea; for an objective idea is equally determined by external data or borrowed from outside even when it is subjectively conditioned. Extroverted Thinking, therefore need not necessarily be concretistic; it can just as easily be purely ideal thinking, if for instance it can be shown that the ideas it operates with are largely borrowed from outside, ie, have been transmitted by tradition and education.” Psychological types P.342
Extroverted Thinking, much like Extroverted Feeling is a faculty of radical Extroversion. What this shows is that it derives its methodology and identity primarily from the outside. As is well known, an Extrovert is most stimulated by the external environment. Hence, the Extroverted Thinker need not be only concrete and not at all abstract, as Jung has earlier pointed out. The Extroverted Thinker can contemplate even the most abstract of matters as long as they are supported by entities of the external world. The thinking of individuals like Napoleon Bonaparte and Alexander the Great are distinct representations of such phenomena. However, it is clear that the Extroverted Thinker is more comfortable in the realm of the concrete than in the abstract. As on this account we may compare the Thinking of Napoleon Bonaparte, who could be thought of as a representative of Extroverted Thinking in relation to the thinking of Albert Einstein. Both have demonstrated an ability to think in the abstract with great proficiency, yet Einstein, the Introverted Thinker has advanced further in the realm of abstract thought because he needed less support of the object. The Extroverted Thinker needs the concrete for the following reasons. In order for his thoughts to be validated, they need to be confirmed by an external object. As has been shown by the great English philosopher of the 17th century, George Berkeley, there are no abstract ideas in the material world. Hence, whatever is material, or external to the mind is only concrete. As common sense shall inform us, we may have abstract ideas in our imagination about the table we see, but there is nothing abstract about the table that we see as a thing in itself.
However, the Extroverted Thinker, again, to make this point more clear, if qualified by the concrete object outside of himself will feel warranted to embark on a manifold of theoretical speculations. The empirical method and the epistemical methodology of conventional sciences is in closest affinity with Extroverted Thinking. There can be no doubt that theories of psychology, sociology and biology are highly abstract and complicated, yet retain a firm grasp of the empirical evidence upon which the abstractions in such fields are founded. Before we can explore the question of what Extroverted Thinking is, we must first clearly define the essence of Thinking.
Thinking in its own element could be equated with the essence of logic, or impersonal reasoning, the advanced version of is well known as mathematics. Thus, in condensed form we can equate Thinking with reasoning. We also know that Thinking can be both Extroverted and Introverted, the essence of Thinking in its own element has very little partiality towards Introversion or Extroversion. The difference between the two is that the former is qualified by the subject and the latter by the object. As Jung earlier comments that Thinking by and large is qualified by subjective sources (Introverted Thinking), or objective data transmitted by sense-perception (Extroverted Thinking). At the very essence, Thinking is a thought process, hence this requires work of the subjective, or the inner faculties of the individual preoccupied with thinking. However, this subjective or inner work of the thought process is most easily stimulated by the external or the concrete object. Thus the essence of Thinking is internal, however, it could clearly be stimulated both by the inner world it dwells in or by the external world it associates with, as the demarcation between Extroverted Thinking and Introverted Thinking shows to us.
“So in Judging whether a particular thinking is extraverted or not we must first ask: by what criterion does it judge---does it come from outside, or is its origin subjective? A further criterion is the direction the thinking takes in drawing conclusions---whether it is principally directed outwards or not.” Psychological types P.342 To further elaborate on this matter Thinking derives its confidence in ideas propounded by virtue of having acknowledged the logically consistency of the notion in consideration.
Because Extroverted Thinking is stimulated by the external or concrete object, it is principally directed outward, and because it requires the External object for maintenance of itself, the criteria it utilizes to make assessments is external to itself. As is manifest to any logician, thinking or logic requires initial premises, at best logic can show what is and what is not true granted that the accepted premises are deemed satisfactory in the given thought process. Or in other words, logic cannot certify that a proposition is either true or false because it accepts the initial premises of such a proposition by default. This is what Jung has previously referred to as an agenda. Hence, the Extroverted Thinker derives his initial premises from the outside or the objective factor, the Introverted Thinker derives them from within or the subjective factor.
The only reason the Extroverted Thinker will not accept the premises offered by the external factor is if they are logically untenable or contradictory. However, he clearly he has no say in regards to why or why not certain notions should be accepted as he lacks the inner judgment. This of course would be the case if the Extroverted Thinker was a pure type and inhered within a psyche wholly devoid of all other faculties. The Extroverted Thinking type can attain closer affinity with the inner judgment through cultivation of his Introverted Perceptions. The Extroverted Thinking type with auxiliary Introverted Intuition is in a more advantageous position than the Extroverted Thinking type with a Sensory preference because the Introverted Intuition is more internally focused due to its abstract nature. Abstract is the antonym of concrete, and it is easy to see a connection between abstraction and introversion owing to our earlier example concerning the equation of extroversion with concreteness. As an additional note concerning Extroverted Thinking, we should proceed further to explain why the Extroverted Thinker needs to be first and foremost in tune with the concrete or External object, yet after this point is free to explore all the abstract ideas he may chose to embark on. As an Extrovert, his Externally focused faculties operate first, yet when this criteria has been met, he is free to advance towards his internally focused faculties.
Next, we should ask, what exactly does it mean to derives premises and methodologies of thought from the outside. The Thinking of a conventional business or an operator of a military unit are a striking case in point for this. In such cases, the business man or the officer is given an agenda which clearly outlines what is and what is not acceptable. He is instructed to impose this agenda onto the external environment, whether it be other businesses or soldiers. Hence, what agrees with the agenda, is acceptable and what does not agree with the agenda is unacceptable. Of course, if the Extroverted Thinker later finds the agenda to be illogical or for any reason unacceptable, unlike the Introverted Thinker he will not be content with merely abandoning the agenda, but will be compelled to change it. This attests to the Extroverted Thinker’s tendency, on the account of extroversion to be in tune with the external environment under all circumstances. It is the very air that he breathes. What this also means is that the Extroverted Thinker is limited to the tools available in the external environment or those that could be created using the tools of the external environment to force change.
The next question we should ask is, which factor of the psychic economy of the Extroverted Thinker is salient, the Extroversion or Thinking? The Extroversion is the air that any Extrovert breathes, Extroversion or the external material object is what the Extrovert requires in order to function, or in this case to think. Hence, without a doubt, it is the Extroversion that is salient. Extroversion is clearly more associated with action than contemplation. Hence, the Extroverted Thinker is far more concerned with application of thoughts or ideas rather than the integrity of their theoretical make up. As earlier mentioned, the Extroverted Thinker is forced to be in close affinity with the external environment. Thus, he does not have a choice not to act. To stop acting is tantamount to stopping breathing. Inevitably the Extroverted Thinker is compelled to influence his external environment and change it towards what he believes shall make it better than what it has been hitherto. His agenda may be based on the external factors of the environment that he currently inhabits, the environment he currently strives to change, however, as a Thinker he has the faculties of critical analysis that he needs to induce the necessary changes. He also has the connection to the inner life which is necessary in order to change the external environment in favor of what the inner life deems proper. This is especially the case if the Extroverted Thinker in question is gifted with Intuition. It is also the case that the Extroverted Thinker requires very little emotional support and this grants him the privilege of autonomy, as he is free to do as he deems desirable irrespectively of whether or not this merits the approval of other individuals. Thus, unlike the Extroverted Feeler, the Extroverted Thinker is much less likely to succumb to the tyranny of the convention. Clearly it is the case that his thinking is afflicted by the object in a tyrannous fashion similarly to that of Extroverted Feeling, however he is equipped with tools of far greater quality to overcome this dilemma.
It should be mentioned however, that since Extroversion holds primacy over Thinking, the Extroverted Thinker is in danger of having his thoughts conform to what the object demands. It is certainly unlikely that he will compromise logic to conform to the object, however, he may fall prey to unconscious forces that he has very little intellectual awareness of. As an Extrovert, the Extroverted Thinker tends not to be clearly aware of his inner faculties and hence he may be tacitly undermined by them. As a dominant Judging type, he may not be closely in tune with his perceptions. As a result he may not be consciously aware of perceptions that do not confirm the attitudes supportive of his current methodologies of thought and firmly established axioms and premises of his worldview. Hence, his reasoning may almost always be analytically immaculate, however, he may unconsciously disregard ideas that currently live a world apart. Or ideas that he has hitherto had an apathetical or antagonistical attitude towards.
It has been mentioned in earlier profiles that the Extroverted Judging type is closely in tune with the External grid of perception by which the ebb and flow of the external world is to be organized. That is the essence of Extroverted Judgment, the Introverted Judging type which has Extroverted Judgment as the shadow faculty tends to lack this grid of perception. As may easily be inferred from earlier ideas discussed in this essay, Extroverted Judgment operates primarily by comparing external variables to the agenda which it has accepted by default. It has also been mentioned earlier that the Extroverted Thinking type which is a representative of Extroverted Judgment tends to distort his perceptions in favor of the previously established agenda by Thinking.
Thus, this leads us to further take note of the aforementioned grid of perception. The grid of perception is more informative than directive, hence it is more of an essence of perception rather than judgment. However, since Judgment precedes perception for the Extroverted Thinking type, the perception is skewed in favor of the demands of thinking. Hence, only perceptions that agree with Thinking are viewed in a favorable light and are highly likely to retain a position in the psyche of the Extroverted Thinker. Thus, all things are organized based on the agenda imposed by the Extroverted Thinking before they are properly incepted. Only upon further analysis could the Extroverted Thinker do justice to information he has stored in the categories of the agenda imposed by Extroverted Thinking. However, initially, it is not within his power to free himself from his prejudices.
Such prejudices derive from the external world without a doubt. They derive primarily from the school of thought that the Extroverted Thinker has acquired most of his inspiration from. This is the case because as a dominant Thinking type, thinking or intellectual pursuits are prized above all. Yet, because the object or extroversion holds primacy over Thinking, the Extroverted Thinker runs the danger of sacrificing the integrity of his thoughts to the object. And this is the reason why the schools of thought which were particularly inspiring to him could have a greater impact on his own private thought than he would have wished to allow. This certainly does not give the Introverted Thinker a break, as he suffers from a very similar malady. Much like the Extroverted Thinker, the Introverted Thinker is in danger of having his thoughts vitiated by an entity foreign to the essence of thought. For the Extroverted Thinker it is the object, for the Introverted Thinker it is the subject, or his own private, unconscious predilections which dwell in the abyss of his psyche.
Accordingly, as it has been mentioned in the Extroverted Feeling profile, the Extrovert lacks the inner conscience, hence it is very easy for him to be seduced into unethical activity as long as others are not watching. This again, does not imply hypocrisy or conscious manipulation on behalf of the Extrovert, but merely shows that because the ethical agenda lies outside of the psyche of the Extroverted Thinker, he needs to be in tune with the External agenda, in order to properly employ the standard. Or in other words, he needs to be in interaction with the external world in order to practice what he preaches, as because if he is not reminded of his agenda, he easily forgets about it. To make the point even more clear, this is because the agenda is stored in the faculties external to the subject and therefore not easily accessible from within. The obvious implication of this is that the Extroverted Thinker can be seduced into illogical thought and violation of his thinking values such as fairness and clear-headedness when not in proper interaction with the external environment. Hence, he is most logically consistent and fair when interacting with the external world. Therefore the Extroverted Thinker is far more adept as a business manager or a general rather than a solitary philosopher. For the very least he shall wish to be a scientist, as this leads him further away from essence of introversion and pure thought and into closer affinity with interaction with the external world. For this reason Extroverted Thinking tends to prefer laboratory experiments to theoretical speculations of mathematics and philosophy.
As could be inferred from the discussion concerning the Extroverted Thinking type that we have embarked on at this point, such intense affinity with the object poses further dangers which require further ramifications. “This thinking naturally leads directly back to the object, but never beyond it, not even to a linking of experience with an objective data. Conversely, when it has an idea for an object, it is quite unable to experience its practical, individual value, but remains stuck in a more or less tautological position. The materialistic mentality is an instructive example of this. When extraverted thinking is subordinated to objective data as a result of over-determination by the object, it engrosses itself entirely in the individual experience and accumulated mass of undigested empirical material. The oppressive weight of individual experiences having little or no connection with one another produces a dissociation of thought which usually requires psychological compensation.”
Hence, the Extroverted Thinker, in the event of having abused his faculties will not be able to think at all. As the essence of Extroversion is to be equated with action itself. Yet Thinking requires interaction with the subjective factor or one’s inner ideas. Thus, the Extroverted Thinker, in such a case, simply acts too much to think. His affinity with the external object, which by its very nature renders the propensity towards materialism hardly in need of further elaboration. For this reason, the Extroverted Thinking type tends to be over-represented in the academic circle of behaviorist psychologists. From the intellectual viewpoint, Extroverted Thinking is most adept at making practical, concrete and quick decisions in a short amount of time. Success of military generals and business officials is representative of the merit of this type. This is the case because Extroversion renders a connection with the external world fluent and quite easy in effect. Hence, the Extroverted Thinker tends to have few difficulties in relating and applying his thoughts to the external world. Yet Extroversion is antithetical with Introversion, and therefore the Extroverted Thinker tends to be much less at home in the realm of theoretical contemplation. Thus, profound thinking is not the strength of the Extroverted Thinker. As a behaviorist he can easily identify the concrete sources of the problem in behaviors of other individuals and concoct many useful practical solutions, however, he will not be able to solve the deeper, underlying problems of psychology surrounding the behaviors that have been studied. In such a case, Extroverted Thinking shall be in need of modification by the faculties of Introversion. This is the main vice of the Extroverted Thinking type from the standpoint of intellectual assessment. However, to further depict the essence of the Extroverted Thinker it is important to discuss the virtues of this type to a greater extent.
The aforementioned grid of perception endows the Extroverted Thinker with a clearly organized mind, much like that of the Introverted Thinker. From a practical standpoint, the Extroverted Thinker holds one important advantage over his introverted counterpart. Namely that his thoughts and ideas could be easily applied to the external world. Hence, this is what enables him to make his decisions quickly and with great accuracy. Since the Extroverted Thinker is in close affinity with the external world, his Thinking is primarily concerned with how to interact with the external world. As a Thinker, he tends to be strategically minded, and his external focus enables him to apply strategies and plans to the external world. Once more, success of Napoleon Bonaparte and Alexander the Great are emblematic of Extroverted Thinker’s success at application of ideas to practical and concrete endeavors. The Extroverted Thinker, due to the intense degree of Extroverion is also quite adept at interacting with the external world. He does not contemplate the implications of his actions upon immediate introduction of them and therefore unlike the Introverted Thinker tends to be very decisive. Whatever is consistent with his agenda is sound, whatever is not consistent is unsound, and what cannot be categorized as one of the two on the spot is irrelevant. “This type of man elevates objective reality, or an objectively oriented intellectual formula, into the ruling principle not only for himself but for his whole environment. By this formula good and evil are measured, and beauty and ugliness determined. Everything that agrees with this formula is right, everything that contradicts it is wrong, and anything that passes by it indifferently is merely incidental. Because this formula seems to embody the entire meaning of life, it is made into a universal law which must be put into effect everywhere all the time, both individually and collectively. Just as the extraverted thinking type subordinates himself to his formula, so, for their own good, everybody round him must obey it too, for whoever refuses to obey it is wrong----he is resisting the universal law, and is therefore unreasonable, immoral and without conscience. His moral code forbids him to tolerate exceptions; his ideal must also be a universally valid truth, quite indispensable for the salvation of mankind. This is not from any great love for his neighbor, but from the highest standpoint of justice and truth.” Psychological types p. 347