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  1. #1
    Mind Wanderer Zeego's Avatar
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    Default Merging Socionics with MBTI

    I recently read this post on Wordpress about how some people in the typology community (notably Victor Gulenko, Dario Nardi, and the author of the post itself) believe that Socionics and MBTI can be merged with each other, and if you are a certain type in one system (e.g. INTP) then you must be the corresponding type in the other system (INTj). To anyone on TypoC who believes this, I have a question: how do you reconcile the fundamental differences in how the types and functions are defined between the systems?
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  2. #2
    cute lil war dog Bush's Avatar
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    They're trying to describe very similar things, but from different and incomplete perspectives. They could very well be pointing at the same things -- the same types -- but have some kinks to get worked out in their explanations. Those kinks cause the differences between their perspectives. We typically frame things in terms of how the models actually are at present, kinks and all, because otherwise it'd be difficult to discuss them (on account of no common ground of what JCFs are about). Until there's a Grand Unified Theory of typology, they're going to be different, and there's little choice but to roll with their differences.

    That is, they define things at least somewhat differently now, but they could very well be combined. Combining them can't be forced; it has to wait until there's a better understanding of what they're trying to get at.

    Kind of like how the different Abrahamic religions perceive God differently. Basically, there's a truth out there, and there are many different stabs at capturing it.


    eta: should say that I don't mean this as "well both are equally true"
    Last edited by Bush; 05-23-2017 at 12:44 PM.
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  3. #3
    Junior Member Larix's Avatar
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    Hmm. As someone who has done a lot of my own speculative merging of theories, I found that the only way to truly harmonize both systems was to create several different "blends" of functions, because so many people identify with very different types in one system than another, and have very convincing reasons to back up their claims. To me, it's a question of authority. I'd personally rather come up with my own blended, unified theory and see who agrees/disagrees and why than wait for the experts to come together and figure it out. Because even if they do, people will still disagree with them, and they'll still have to give the same old "no typology is perfect" caveat.

    Many will disagree with me, but I can perceive of any typology blend potentially working if you make some tweaks. I can imagine any MBTI type identifying with any of the 4 quadras, especially when there's so much variation in the interpretations of each subtype. An MBTI ISFJ could totally relate more to an EII than an ESI or an SEI, because they resonate more with Delta values than Alpha, Gamma or Beta.

    The main reconciler for me is honestly the Enneagram. An INFJ 854 sp/sx who identifies with ILI seems potentially more probable than an INFJ 947, who might identify more with Alpha, Delta or Beta type descriptions. In my own case, I relate to almost everything about IEI's in some descriptions, but when it gets into the function order in Model A, the way each element is described is very loose and vague imo, and allows for a lot of room for multiple interpretations of a single type.

    It all comes down to the quality of the descriptions. Very few people put in the energy to do detailed descriptions of each function and its use, and getting at this information takes quite a bit of digging. If there is to be a synthesis of theories, the experts are going to have to do the work of refining and clarifying the details, and dig into the contrary interpretations of how each function operates in the order they appear in a given type. Their authoritative stance will at least provide an "official" definition that people can measure their own theories and speculations against. But I don't know if the experts are really interested in having that authority.
    Last edited by Larix; 05-22-2017 at 10:09 PM. Reason: word clarification.
    ██▐ IEI [Ni] ▐▐▐ 4w5 ♦ 5w4 ♦ 9w8 [So/Sx] ▐▐ ▐ INFJ ▐▐▐█

  4. #4
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    But i can relate more i mean, get more information in socionics rather than mbti.
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  5. #5
    Insane Visionary Kanra13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larix View Post
    Hmm. As someone who has done a lot of my own speculative merging of theories, I found that the only way to truly harmonize both systems was to create several different "blends" of functions, because so many people identify with very different types in one system than another, and have very convincing reasons to back up their claims. To me, it's a question of authority. I'd personally rather come up with my own blended, unified theory and see who agrees/disagrees and why than wait for the experts to come together and figure it out. Because even if they do, people will still disagree with them, and they'll still have to give the same old "no typology is perfect" caveat.

    Many will disagree with me, but I can perceive of any typology blend potentially working if you make some tweaks. I can imagine any MBTI type identifying with any of the 4 quadras, especially when there's so much variation in the interpretations of each subtype. An MBTI ISFJ could totally relate more to an EII than an ESI or an SEI, because they resonate more with Delta values than Alpha, Gamma or Beta.

    The main reconciler for me is honestly the Enneagram. An INFJ 854 sp/sx who identifies with ILI seems potentially more probable than an INFJ 947, who might identify more with Alpha, Delta or Beta type descriptions. In my own case, I relate to almost everything about IEI's in some descriptions, but when it gets into the function order in Model A, the way each element is described is very loose and vague imo, and allows for a lot of room for multiple interpretations of a single type.

    It all comes down to the quality of the descriptions. Very few people put in the energy to do detailed descriptions of each function and its use, and getting at this information takes quite a bit of digging. If there is to be a synthesis of theories, the experts are going to have to do the work of refining and clarifying the details, and dig into the contrary interpretations of how each function operates in the order they appear in a given type. Their authoritative stance will at least provide an "official" definition that people can measure their own theories and speculations against. But I don't know if the experts are really interested in having that authority.
    INTP with developed E with J tendencies here, it seems. I'd love some sort of blend... for now mbti is still a bit too strict. Even socionics since it's directly tied, in theory, to mbti often. I've noticed some others obviously having the same issues, too.

    I've kind of thought of designing some kind of personality system as well... granted I doubt I will... Just more like an idea branching off of mbti to improve it. Maybe a form of subtypes. Idk. I just wish they had a system more flexible.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member asynartetic's Avatar
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    I'm tired of these people who say these systems can't be reconciled and correlated. They just haven't given any effort into doing so. I think it's a case of things getting lost in translation between the different systems, but there's more commonality and correlation than there is a lack thereof, if you're willing to do the legwork.

    Check out this channel: Ben Vaserlan
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    He does live chats with Professor Gulenko, Gulenko's disciples, the spawn of Keirsey, Lord Nardi, et al and attempts to synthesize the Jungian-derived systems and Temperament theory.

    He is, if I remember correctly, typed an INTP and LII-Ne, so the way he generates his framework of a greater understanding of all of these systems is from a distinctly TiNe perspective. These video chats can get lengthy but it's fun to see the interaction between different types and to see Nardi and Gulenko talking to one another (via a translator). The Keirsey chats are interesting, even though he shits on the idea of the functions.
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  7. #7
    Mind Wanderer Zeego's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larix View Post
    The main reconciler for me is honestly the Enneagram. An INFJ 854 sp/sx who identifies with ILI seems potentially more probable than an INFJ 947, who might identify more with Alpha, Delta or Beta type descriptions.
    Which Enneagram types would you say you associate with which quadras?
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  8. #8
    Talk to me. Merced's Avatar
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    Socionics and MBTI define functions differently. They are not compatible.
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  9. #9
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    I believe that MBTI and socionics correlate to some degree. Meaning, I believe that a combination like ESFP in MBTI and LII in socionics isn't possible. But the descriptions are not the same, which can cause minor differences in types. For example I understand why someone who types as ENFP in MBTI might type as EIE /ENFj in socionics.
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  10. #10
    Junior Member Larix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeego View Post
    Which Enneagram types would you say you associate with which quadras?
    Let's say, to expand on my previous example, an INFJ identifies 8 and 5 as their most predominant types. There may be something satisfying to them in the LII descriptions, for example, because the descriptions address the use of Ni and Fe/Fi in a particular way that MBTI doesn't address, that describes their lack of image-consciousness in favor of hard analysis and challenging dissection of ideas. The ILI is more tough-minded than the IEI and the EII. All 3 types- the IEI, EII and ILI are all imaginative, courteous, sensitive/emotional and thoughtful like INFJs. But the INFJ 85x might find it hard to reconcile this critical nature with the charming approach of IEI or the more restrained, 1-ish character of EII.

    It's less that I have any specific correlations in mind, and more that I see how a specific MBTI+Enneagram combo might lead one to resonate with an unexpected socionics type more than a stereotypical one, especially if the MBTI+Enneagram combo is non-stereotypical or counter-intuitive.

    There is always a choice between saying "the description says X, so if you don't resonate with X, you misunderstand how well the description actually applies to you," or "Ok, well, if that's the case, what would someone of those type combinations look like, and why does that make sense/ not make sense?" The latter response still validates the systems, but doesn't attempt to apply them too rigidly at the risk of curbing someone's ability to honestly explore their particular motivations and traits. After all, the system should serve the individual, and not the other way around.

    This doesn't even take into account any instinctual variants, either, which would profoundly effect how different MBTI and Socionics descriptions resonate with people.

    If you account for all of the possible Tritype combinations, with wings and instinctual variants, and multiply those by every combination between MBTI types and Socionics subtypes, that produces over 5 million personality variations that people could potentially resonate with, which is a mind-boggling number to produce accurate descriptions for. But as a universal system, it works better as a descriptive language than a categorical system.

    For example, if someone said they identified as something extremely odd like an ESFP EII-Ne 5w4, 2w1, 8w7 sp/so; one still has enough information to discuss either why this combination may not be likely, or, if for some strange reason upon meeting the person this combination made sense somehow, you'd have enough descriptive information to understand why. An ESFP/EII combo is very hard for me to imagine, but I don't necessarily want to rule it out as impossible. How can anyone really know for sure?

    I am a bit skeptical that there actual objective correlations, because who gets to decide how different is too different when it comes to similar types? But for the sake of argument, can an MBTI NF type only be a feeling Beta or Delta? And if others are possible, is it only if the information elements appear in certain blocks?
    ██▐ IEI [Ni] ▐▐▐ 4w5 ♦ 5w4 ♦ 9w8 [So/Sx] ▐▐ ▐ INFJ ▐▐▐█
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