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Thread: SJs and Theory

  1. #11
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    You can count on the INTP's to give a good answer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IZthe411 View Post
    I think if the theory is too vague, examples upfront are better. Take audit. That's all theory- principles. You can demonstrate an audit, but no one audit will ever be the same.
    My SJ is very adamant about the bold. Personally I have a very hard time with details - I must have an overview to understand and I just try to identify big-picture similarities in situations. He's much more attentive to how situations never perfectly fit the model, and how no two situations are ever completely alike. He doesn't have any trouble grasping theory, but he has such an awareness of how removed theory can be from reality that he seems to prefer to dig into the detail where possible, to come up with the best answer for each situation. As far as I can tell, his issue is less theory versus hands-on and more model versus actuality, if that makes sense. It's not about how conceptual it is - it's about the accuracy of it. He has little patience for the theory because it's not real.

    Wish I could convince him to be interested in type theory, I bet he'd make some interesting posts.

    Quote Originally Posted by MadHatter
    This is a wild guess, but I assume quite a lot of theory is the result of a very diligent Si at work.
    Indeed.

    The funny thing for me personally, being an N dominant, is I'm an avid artist and I LOATHE art theory. I'm completely hands-on and detail-first when it comes to art. Somehow I feel like art theory robs art of its beauty and mystery... turns it into a science instead of an art.

  3. #13
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skylights;1958004
    Indeed.

    The funny thing for me personally, being an N dominant, is I'm an avid artist and I LOATHE art theory. I'm completely hands-on and detail-first when it comes to art. Somehow I feel like art theory robs art of its beauty and mystery... turns it into a science instead of an [I
    art[/I].
    I'm not an artist in the sense of creating it but I'm a great art appreciator. Like you, I find the theory part kind of cold and I am an NT. I find art to be about the emotional expression as well as the beauty and mystery. You can't really reduce that to scientific principles. Well maybe you can but it takes the enjoyment out of it.


    Quote Originally Posted by IZthe411 View Post
    I learn better by theory. I don't understand why this is considered an N trait.
    I prefer to start at the top and then work my way downward (Big picture and drill down). Another trait typed at N.

    How many of you S types prefer theory over just learning how to do XYZ?
    I noticed you know type yourself as InTJ. Did you decide on N because you prefer theory and figure if you prefer theory you must be an N or some other reason?

    It's not as common but I don't see why there can't be S's who prefer learning by theory. The MBTI has a Step II test that breaks up each preference into 5 facets. One of the S/N facets is experiential vs. theoretical. So you could have an S type overall who prefers the theoretical facet.
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    Well at least SJs look at the facts before they assume the theory is true whereas many of the Ns just trust their gut without further inquiry and SJs also once they grasp the theory actually know how to put it into practice. If you ask me the SJ method sounds more scientific.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RaptorWizard View Post
    Well at least SJs look at the facts before they assume the theory is true whereas many of the Ns just trust their gut without further inquiry and SJs also once they grasp the theory actually know how to put it into practice. If you ask me the SJ method sounds more scientific.
    It depends. It's definitely more scientific than, for example, an INTJ in tunnel vision mode, rejecting all data that opposes their view. But sometimes we take a theory for granted and don't question it, whereas oftentimes Ns are on the lookout for something better.

    Personally, I really enjoy theory. I love the moment of enlightenment, when a theory EXPLAINS EVERYTHING -- which is why I'd disagree with Habba and say that I love knowing Why things work, not How things work. (I analyze and over-analyze just about everything; if you ask me what I thought of a movie, you're not gonna hear "good" or "bad", you're gonna get a paragraph or two, and it'll sound like the outline of an English paper or a movie review.)

    Also I agree with IZ that theory is extremely useful as a learning tool. It's a framework for the details, like installing a bookshelf before buying your books. (Needless to say, my attitude on theory is very Si/Ne.) But I also relate to Giggly; it's particularly thrilling to learn a new concept within its own logic, without it getting explained to you. A feast for the brain!
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJCC View Post
    (I analyze and over-analyze just about everything; if you ask me what I thought of a movie, you're not gonna hear "good" or "bad", you're gonna get a paragraph or two, and it'll sound like the outline of an English paper or a movie review.)
    I usually gripe about stuf like the way the gunfire sounds, the ballistic properties of the various calibers being used, and that the lightbars on the emergency vehicle were obviously not Califrnia Code of Regulations Title 13 compliant even though the movie was set in California.
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  7. #17
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    Interesting thread! I"m a very, very abstract learner and I've attributed that to my N side. Both my husband and I are physicists, but he's a climatologist and I'm a string theorist. Granted, string theory was one step too many into the abstract for me, but before I met a few string theory professors, I didn't know there was such a thing as too abstract. And until I met some of my former students, I didn't know there existed people who didn't get the link between "it's 50 euros for the connection to the water distriution and 12 euros for each cubic metre of water" and "f(x)=50+12x".
    I think this is similar to other properties and MBTI: preferring the abstract gets you some N points, but not enough to land you in the N realm on its own.
    But @EJCC, what do you mean by "why" and "how" things work? To me, everything that's answerable (and not by religious statements or philosophical mumbo-jumbo) is a "how". Why do I exist? No idea. How did I come to be? Well there was that egg and that sperm...
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    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tamske View Post
    I think this is similar to other properties and MBTI: preferring the abstract gets you some N points, but not enough to land you in the N realm on its own.

    But EJCC, what do you mean by "why" and "how" things work? To me, everything that's answerable (and not by religious statements or philosophical mumbo-jumbo) is a "how". Why do I exist? No idea. How did I come to be? Well there was that egg and that sperm...
    True that. I didn't intend my statement to refer to that sort of thought process. I was thinking more along the lines of, say... psychology vs. neurology. The answer to "how" people act a certain way has to do with synapses and muscles and various other technical data, but the answer to "why" people act a certain way has to do with motivations, from my interpretation of it. If I hear about a crime committed on TV, I'm much more interested in the criminal's motivations, than what the details of the crime itself were.

    Or maybe this metaphor would work better: How did the model volcano blow up in the middle of class? Baking soda and vinegar reacting to one another. Why did the model volcano blow up in the middle of class? Because one of the students ran up to the volcano -- already full of baking soda -- and poured vinegar in behind the teacher's back.

    I dunno. I'm not explaining this very well.
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by SD45T-2 View Post
    I usually gripe about stuf like the way the gunfire sounds, the ballistic properties of the various calibers being used, and that the lightbars on the emergency vehicle were obviously not Califrnia Code of Regulations Title 13 compliant even though the movie was set in California.
    My mechanic (ISTP) dad is like this with engine noises in movies. It seems that half the time they just use a big noise that sounds cool without caring which sort of vehicle it actually goes in - eg. "haha, that's ridiculous. That's a Detroit! That's the wrong engine for that model."

    I think more and more now that the N vs S learning differences, is in how things click for you. Both like (and need) theory and details, it's just that we need more clarity in one particular area in order to appreciate and add meaning to the other. Sensors will appreciate theory if they see the application of it, just as Intuitors will appreciate details if they see how they fit together.
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  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tamske View Post
    Interesting thread! I"m a very, very abstract learner and I've attributed that to my N side. Both my husband and I are physicists, but he's a climatologist and I'm a string theorist.
    @EJCC

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