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The differences between the MBTI and Jung

Entropic

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I see a lot of confusion on this site about the differences between the MBTI and Jung. The reason I'm making this thread is because I think we need to discuss the differences between what an MBTI type is and what a Jungian type is which is not the same thing. In the MBTI system, what is mostly measured are what we could call at best function output. This is why the MBTI tests ask questions whether you're a thinker or a feeler, an outgoing type or an introverted type and so on.

In Jungian theory, what the MBTI truly measures is thus what Jung called the persona:

The persona, for Swiss psychologist Carl Jung, was the social face the individual presented to the world—"a kind of mask, designed on the one hand to make a definite impression upon others, and on the other to conceal the true nature of the individual."

What we get is thus that people often end up being one MBTI type but a different Jungian type. For instance, many sensors mistype themselves as intuitives because they see themselves as imaginative and so on, and many intelligent feelers mistype themselves as thinkers and many intuitives who are more hands-on mistype themselves as sensors, and many extroverts mistype themselves as introverts because they fail to understand the differences between how the MBTI defines introversion-extroversion as opposed to Jung, and many thinkers mistype themselves as feelers if they are more on the emotional spectrum.

Thus, a lot of confusion arises from the fact that the MBTI system does not attempt to fully utilize the cognitive function theory Jung laid out, but instead tries to peg people into types based on perceived function output. Therefore, a person who appears unemotional must be a thinker because their ego is oriented more towards thinking and rejects feeling as an evaluative process. This might sound good in theory but utterly fails in actuality, since being emotional or not has little to do with whether we are thinkers or feelers. It shows a great misunderstanding of Jung's concept of type and how the functions operate within the psyche.

Aside thinking and feeling that I think are arguably one of the most misunderstood functions in type communities, there's an equally big problem with the introversion-extroversion axis where many fail to realize that your social energy is not necessarily related to your ego-conscious function attitude. By ego-conscious function attitude I am referring to that Jung postitulated that the ego will always accept one function as the dominant perspective in the psyche, and this function will furthermore be oriented in an introverted or extroverted manner, suggesting a bias where our cognitive focus lies. The best way to exemplify the differences between cognitive introversion-extroversion is to compare to the differences between subjectivity-objectivity in philosophy:

Objectivity is a central philosophical concept, related to reality and truth, which has been variously defined by sources. Generally, objectivity means the state or quality of being true even outside of a subject's individual feelings, imaginings, or interpretations. A proposition is generally considered to be objectively true (to have objective truth) when its truth conditions are met and are "mind-independent"—that is, existing freely or independently from a mind (from the thoughts, feelings, ideas, etc. of a sentient subject). In a simpler meaning of the term, objectivity refers to the ability to judge fairly, without bias or external influence.
Subjectivity is a term used in philosophy to refer to the condition of being a subject and the subject's perspective, feelings, beliefs, and desires.[1] The term is usually contrasted with objectivity,[1] which is used to describe humans as "seeing" the universe exactly for what it is from a standpoint free from human perception and its influences, human cultural interventions, past experience and expectation of the result.
When the ego is oriented towards extroversion, we could thus say that the ego also favors an objective view of the world whereas if the ego is orientated towards introversion, we could say it favors a subjective worldview. Where we derive our energy thus doesn't say much when it comes to our actual cognitive function preferences.

Therefore, what is important to understand is that the MBTI type must be separated from actual Jungian cognitive type. This is why I type as an MBTI INTP because my personality or persona is oriented towards thinking. I'm what you could say, unemotional in the sense of not being particularly people-oriented. Similarly, I'm extremely messy and not very organized and structured and I'm idea-oriented over hands-on concrete thinking and I'm introverted because I can't stand being around people for long without suffering a mental breakdown resulting in panic attacks because it drains so much energy.

Despite of this, I'm a Jungian F-N-S-T type with a preference towards my ego being introverted meaning Fi-N-S-Te. My thinking is expressed through the inferior because my thinking is extroverted, not introverted which is completely opposite of the INTP type that prefers the functions Ti-N-S-Fe. It would be possible to argue Te-N-S-Fi for me, so in a way it is right just that my ego orientation would thus be extroverted instead of cognitively introverted, but I do not possess any ego complexes surrounding my feeling function as I do when it comes to thinking. My auxiliary and tertiary functions are not fully differentiated towards any specific orientation which is expressed in that I can find myself switching between Ni-Se and Si-Ne.

When typing people we should thus ask ourselves, what is it that we're actually typing? Is it MBTI type based on stereotypes but if that's true, then why even bother with function terminology and instead not just type people based on the four letter code? If it's an attempt to type Jungian type, then why get stuck on whether people derive energy from social interaction or doing things as opposed to where their cognitive focus bias seems to lie? Is it towards objectivity or subjectivity? Most importantly, we should ask ourselves, how do we type people? Why do we type people the way we type them? Does self-growth comes from knowing your MBTI type more or does it come from knowing your Jungian type?
 

madhatter

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I don't disagree completely with what you're saying here, especially the part about the persona. But, I don't necessarily agree that MBTI types should be separated from the Jungian ones. You mention different types "mistyping" in their preferences. And that's exactly what they are: mistypes. People not understanding the true nature of the preferences or functions, and not having a lot of self awareness. I don't like the simplification that MBTI has undergone from Jungian functions, in that the simplification leads to the stereotypes in a lot of material. Not all, but enough to perpetuate some of the more offending stereotypes. Especially when it comes to the Sensation-Intuition dichotomy.

I know we have discussed this before, but I don't think that you can be INTP in MBTI, and INFP in Jung's functions. There is some variations between MBTI and Jungian types, but not so drastically that you can different dominant preference/functions that really are not compatible in that way. For instance, in MBTI, I would say that my sister is ISTJ. But, in Jungian types, I debate whether she is Si-dom or Te-dom. But it's still xSTJ, or Si-Te. With my own type, I have good command of my second auxiliary, so I often fluctuate between being Ti-Se-Ni-Fe, and Ti-Ni-Se-Fe. When I first typed myself in MBTI, I tested as both ISTP and INTP. So the most consistent thing in my type has been Ti, or IxTP, which makes sense. My INFP brother has a thinking persona, but I would not type him as INTP in MBTI. His thinking function is inferior, but that doesn't make him any less intellectual or intelligent or logical, etc. But despite this side to him, in which we really connect, he still makes judgments based out of this evaluative, deeply personal and elusive place before he would make judgments from an impersonal, conceptual position like I would.

I still see you as an MBTI INFP, and I can see how your thinking persona is stemming from inferior Te. You would call yourself "unemotional" and from the outside, I would call my brother unemotional and not people-oriented as well. This makes sense. Fi is very oriented to the self, and its true nature is not on the surface for others to witness like Fe is. True INFPs are not all buttercups and rainbows, and that goes for MBTI and JCF.
 

Entropic

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[MENTION=16013]madhatter[/MENTION] I suppose it depends on how you understand the functions and the system and how the functions are defined. I always type as INTP on MBTI tests, and there are plenty of people who are certain I'm an INTx type (I asked two people on PersC during the past couple of days and they both swear on my INTP-ness). If we look at what the MBTI system is meant to do, i.e. sorting people based on their personality to see what tasks they are good at performing at the work place, then arguably I am not an INFP type either since I prefer performing typical "INTP professions".

Unlike you, I've never typed as a sensor on any MBTI test and always score a strong preference towards intuition. I also tend to score strongly towards thinking since many MBTI tests tend to differentiate T/F based on how people-oriented you are.

So according to you, what is a true INFP? Is a true INFP different to an MBTI INFP and a Jungian Fi-N type and if so, why or if not, why not? There is clearly a great disrepancy between how the two types are depicted in both systems.
 

julesxbm

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Really interesting questions you raise, though I'm only new to both Jung and MBTI and still trying to get to grips with both (see my first post of confusions yesterday!). I'm still trying to evaluate how useful either method is, especially in the light of people's preference for the four elements which is my main interest. The issue of objective/ subjective orientation is so important but I'm not sure if relating it directly to extraversion/introversion is too simplistic? I haven't typed myself with MBTI yet but think I'm something like a INTP.. but in truth, I don't much like many of the definitions of terms or descriptions of resulting types that I've read. They seem very loose and sloppy to me, in my research so far.
 

Entropic

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Really interesting questions you raise, though I'm only new to both Jung and MBTI and still trying to get to grips with both (see my first post of confusions yesterday!). I'm still trying to evaluate how useful either method is, especially in the light of people's preference for the four elements which is my main interest. The issue of objective/ subjective orientation is so important but I'm not sure if relating it directly to extraversion/introversion is too simplistic? I haven't typed myself with MBTI yet but think I'm something like a INTP.. but in truth, I don't much like many of the definitions of terms or descriptions of resulting types that I've read. They seem very loose and sloppy to me, in my research so far.

Actually, it may seem like a simple and inaccurate correlation at first but it's not quite so. You will see in time that it will most likely be the extroverts who will argue that the world is objective and there is only one truth which we can all observe whereas introverts will be likely to claim that there are many truths and they can only know their own. Knowing that their truth is subjective, they will thus also proceed to assume that everyone else is in possession of their own truths too, limited by their perception of the world in a similar manner.

The extroverts being extroverts, tend to be blind that there is a subjective nature to our experiences, this is particularly true for Je dominants. Pe dominants may suffer from the issue to being unable to decide on their perception just seeking mroe and more information.

Why do you find the INTP profiles sloppy?
 

INTP

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persona is not what MBTI tries to measure, its just a bias that comes from self report tests and proper MBTI testing includes an discussion with an MBTI professional for this reason to determine the true type. MBTI attempts to measure jungian type, so if your jungian type is FiNe, that makes you MBTI INFP regardless of what results you get from some crappy tests on internets or from official MBTI test(even the official test is just a way to suggest a type for you, not to determine your type and type profiles are just stereotypical crap you need to take with a grain of salt).

what comes to functions, MBTI used TiNeSeFe originally for INTP because that is what jung was saying about functions. today there are disagreements on whether tert is oriented the same way as dom is or whether it is the opposite as it originally was in MBTI, this is why INTP functions are often said as TiNeSFe, tert having no introversion or extraversion in the official MBTI education.

this whole aux and tert having no introversion or extraversion in jungs typology is a common misunderstanding stemming from what jung said about only differentiated functions being capable of being oriented and inferior functions being the opposite extraversion/introversion from dom. but what this actually means is just that undifferentiated functions do not sort of guide your ego consciously, hence you are not being oriented by them. and what jung actually said about the other functions is that for introvert dominant function is introverted and other functions having infantile extraverted attitude(i dont have time to look up for exact quote, but you can find it easily if you google, im pretty sure it was on 'psychological types').
 

Flatlander

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persona is not what MBTI tries to measure, its just a bias that comes from self report tests and proper MBTI testing includes an discussion with an MBTI professional for this reason to determine the true type. MBTI attempts to measure jungian type, so if your jungian type is FiNe, that makes you MBTI INFP regardless of what results you get from some crappy tests on internets or from official MBTI test(even the official test is just a way to suggest a type for you, not to determine your type and type profiles are just stereotypical crap you need to take with a grain of salt).

what comes to functions, MBTI used TiNeSeFe originally for INTP because that is what jung was saying about functions. today there are disagreements on whether tert is oriented the same way as dom is or whether it is the opposite as it originally was in MBTI, this is why INTP functions are often said as TiNeSFe, tert having no introversion or extraversion in the official MBTI education.

this whole aux and tert having no introversion or extraversion in jungs typology is a common misunderstanding stemming from what jung said about only differentiated functions being capable of being oriented and inferior functions being the opposite extraversion/introversion from dom. but what this actually means is just that undifferentiated functions do not sort of guide your ego consciously, hence you are not being oriented by them. and what jung actually said about the other functions is that for introvert dominant function is introverted and other functions having infantile extraverted attitude(i dont have time to look up for exact quote, but you can find it easily if you google, im pretty sure it was on 'psychological types').

Would you say, then, that a lot of people do not have a proper Jungian type, as you understand his version of a type?
 

madhatter

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madhatter I suppose it depends on how you understand the functions and the system and how the functions are defined. I always type as INTP on MBTI tests, and there are plenty of people who are certain I'm an INTx type (I asked two people on PersC during the past couple of days and they both swear on my INTP-ness). If we look at what the MBTI system is meant to do, i.e. sorting people based on their personality to see what tasks they are good at performing at the work place, then arguably I am not an INFP type either since I prefer performing typical "INTP professions".

To be blunt, I think that the MBTI tests are complete rubbish when it comes to measuring Fi. Usually the "F" on the tests is more indicative of Fe than Fi. I know two Fi-dominants (INFPs), who I have personally given the test to, who both scored as ISTJ on the test (one being my brother, who scored as ISTJ twice). An ISFP I know scored as ISTP. Also, I sense you're being somewhat rhetorical and facetious here, but I really don't think using professions as a proper basis for determining a type. That's one aspect where I think a lot of MBTI profiles are wrong. For example, I have literally seen "farmer" listed as a potential ideal job for an ISTP. Talk to most ISTPs and suggest becoming a "farmer"...see the reaction that comes from that (I would imagine at best, it would be a collective *facepalm*; at worst, serious trolling and ribbing would ensue). If we just went on the basis of professions, I would be INTP myself. I do not seek adrenaline, thrill-seeking environments. However, I would rather have a work environment that is action-oriented and hands-on, i.e. where I can take direct action towards a realistic goal, even if it involves "theory". I need lots of variety or I go stir-crazy. This is very Se-oriented, even though I do not relate to the stupid grease monkey or adrenaline junkie descriptions.

The thing about people being convinced you're an INTx type. I was convinced my brother was INTx type. I don't trust that persona anymore. I know I keep referencing my brother, but he's a wealth of information and my primary source for practically understanding Fi, so bear with me. Another reason why I can see you as INFP, even an MBTI INFP, is because of my very first impression of you on PerC. When you first started posting and going under the INTP label, I distinctly remember thinking, I sense Fi in her, not Ti. It was a hunch, and one I think has proved true.

I don't know exactly which parts of the typical MBTI INFP descriptions that you don't relate to, but I think I guess fairly well. One, you're a 5, and that's going to affect a lot of things; two, I have my brother's experience for a point of reference. You've already mentioned that you're not "people-oriented" like a lot of NF descriptions, and you're not outwardly emotive. Fields such as public service, teaching, counseling, and whatever else INFP descriptions say are ideal jobs would not appeal to you. You also don't fit into the humanitarian, soft image of the badly-written INFP descriptions. Let's look at your area of interest: anthropology. It's a very academic, intellectual, research-oriented field, and what people would immediately say, a-ha! that's NT (because of course, SJs, SPs, and NFs can't be interested in such things...fracking Keirsey). But, what an interest in anthropology shows me is a fundamental interest in humanity, which does not contradict INFP in anyway. It is on a more personal level for you, but what else illustrates Fi better? Your Fi is just not taking an outwardly bent towards an interest in humanity, but in reality, none of the Fi-users I know have an outward expression of their Fi. If they had an outward expression of their Feeling function, they would be extraverted Feelers. Granted, there are a lot, a LOT, of bad descriptions out there that make a complete joke out of INFP, and IxFP in general.

Unlike you, I've never typed as a sensor on any MBTI test and always score a strong preference towards intuition. I also tend to score strongly towards thinking since many MBTI tests tend to differentiate T/F based on how people-oriented you are.

Another example of why MBTI is rubbish for measuring Fi.

So according to you, what is a true INFP? Is a true INFP different to an MBTI INFP and a Jungian Fi-N type and if so, why or if not, why not? There is clearly a great disrepancy between how the two types are depicted in both systems.

A true INFP is the INFP who, while is sensitive and experiences emotions very deeply and richly, is outwardly cold and aloof, and perhaps apathetic to anything outside their own evaluative and emotional experience. The INFP can be the friendly, easy-going person, but then in a flash is as rigid and immovable and argumentative as the most aggressive ExTJ. Understanding and forgiving of people on one hand, the hypercriticism of mostly themselves but also of others, the perfectionism, and stubbornness on the other hand. I could go on, but I don't see a "true" INFP being different to an MBTI INFP or different to Fi-Ne. Because, I don't see the discrepancy being as great as you describe. The majority of MBTI literature that I own describes INFP very similarly to how I've seen Jungians describe Fi. There of course some things that I disregard automatically in these sources. For instance, anything referring to jobs or hobbies, which I believe to be more environment-based than preference-based. But the true meat of the descriptions I believe effectively describe INFP and effectively describe the experience that such a type may go through. When I refer to "true" INFPs, what I mean is simply people who are actually INFPs opposed to people who think they're INFPs based on the fact that "OMG! INFP is the most unique and rare and imaginative and creative type, I'm unique, imaginative, and creative, and emotional and I luv everybody, except for those awful meany thinkers with no souls! <3<3 xoxoxox :3:3, I must be an INFP!!!!!" *700 quazillion thanks received* (I strongly suspect that people who post like that are 13 year old girls). But that mentality of typing based on cutely packaged adjectives without digging deeper. But with that sort of display running rampant in the xNFP forums, I see why some who actually uses Fi, i.e. you and several other Fi-Ne users I've interacted with on PerC, would not relate to that sort of thing at all. The good INFP descriptions, I feel, don't misrepresent INFPs in this way. It's mainly the crappy internet ones of dubious origin that do.
 

julesxbm

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I guess I've been strongly influenced by my Buddhist background (tho' I was probably drawn to that initially because of the pull of my underlying nature). What it's left me with is a conviction/ understanding that there is an objective reality on one level but it's only causal - it's all circumstantial, there's no substance to it. So while everything exists in one sense, it's doesn't exist independently. Buddhism talks about relative truth (things do exist on one level... clearly they do otherwise we couldn't function!) and absolute truth (everything is inherently empty of permanent, independent existence).
True, I happen to be probably Ti or Ni, but what's to stop an Te or Ne holding the same conviction?

As for sloppy profiles, I'll answer later cos I've got a whingey one-year-old on my hands!
 

INTP

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Would you say, then, that a lot of people do not have a proper Jungian type, as you understand his version of a type?

Jung made the distinctions of extraversion/introversion and thinking/feeling/intuitive/sensing type, so your dom function is your type. Also the key difference is that jung usually talked about two auxiliary function, instead of aux and tert, both of them being extraverted in introverted type. When you develop one of the aux functions it is more differentiated than the other one.

Personally i think that tert is oriented same as dom and jungs idea of concretism and arhaism is what made him think otherwise. Imo Sensation for example can be both concreistic and introverted, but jung simply saw concrete functions being extraverted.
 

Entropic

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To be blunt, I think that the MBTI tests are complete rubbish when it comes to measuring Fi. Usually the "F" on the tests is more indicative of Fe than Fi.

I agree with that, which I find ironic since Myers is supposed to have been an INFP herself.

I know two Fi-dominants (INFPs), who I have personally given the test to, who both scored as ISTJ on the test (one being my brother, who scored as ISTJ twice).

Never scored ISTJ though, the closest is INTJ.
An ISFP I know scored as ISTP.

I know an ENFP well who scored ISTP but the thing is that I can kind of see the logic in that too. She's a pretty hands-on and concrete person and likes doing things with her body and hands (possibly enneatype 8) and she's not very fond of emotional display and has issues expressing emotions (we spoke about this). She's also socially introverted and the only reason why I don't type her as an INFP is because I feel there is a fundamental difference in our cognition where she is simply more objectively oriented. I can't put that into words exactly why I feel that way about her, most people who know the system well and knew her well could potentially type her as an ISFP or INFP. Yet I think inferior Si fits her much better than Te even though she can have moments of what you could say, "Te tyranny", but I don't think those outbursts are nearly as bad as mine would be.

Then in the same group of people there's this guy I am fairly sure is an ISFP and it's interesting how different we are as people. He's either a 4 or a 9, possibly a combination of 469 in some order, I can't quite tell which is dominant, but his entire demeanor is very different. Very feeler-y, softer, easy to mistake for an Fe type because he's more emotionally sappy and wears his emotions more on his sleeve. Clearly phlegmatic/sanguine as opposed to me and my ENFP friend who are both melancholic/choleric. I think most people would easily identify this guy's type and get it correctly assuming they're any decent typers, and if they wouldn't, they would not mistake the fact he's a feeler. I did consider ISFJ for him but I don't think that's right. He does score ISFP on the test and it could be because he's potentially a core 4 since there's this overlap with ISFP and 4s being artistic which he is (he's a musician).

Ultimately this relates back to the purpose of why we type people the way we do and what kind of type leads to the most self-growth. There's a reason the MBTI theory is being propagated in the work place and other places because if you disregard that it may not get Jungian cognition right, the purpose isn't necessarily to get it right but to have people be effective at their job in the work place. If this is how we understand MBTI type than your MBTI type is clearly found by taking a test and being sorted out that way.

We can for example disregard Keirsey's work and say he's not doing MBTI but something else, but he is still considered an MBTI theorist. What makes Keirsey worse than Beebe?

Also, I sense you're being somewhat rhetorical and facetious here,

A question, but facetious how?
but I really don't think using professions as a proper basis for determining a type.

To me, it clearly depends on the perspective you're utilizing how you define the MBTI type as I laid out in the above, and the reason why you seek your type or why someone else would want you to be typed. You could say it's not theoretically correct but again, it comes back to purpose.
That's one aspect where I think a lot of MBTI profiles are wrong. For example, I have literally seen "farmer" listed as a potential ideal job for an ISTP. Talk to most ISTPs and suggest becoming a "farmer"...see the reaction that comes from that (I would imagine at best, it would be a collective *facepalm*; at worst, serious trolling and ribbing would ensue). If we just went on the basis of professions, I would be INTP myself. I do not seek adrenaline, thrill-seeking environments. However, I would rather have a work environment that is action-oriented and hands-on, i.e. where I can take direct action towards a realistic goal, even if it involves "theory". I need lots of variety or I go stir-crazy. This is very Se-oriented, even though I do not relate to the stupid grease monkey or adrenaline junkie descriptions.

Care to give any examples of how it's Se-like? You could also argue that Ne would seek that too, with constant change in environment but perhaps less interest with hands-on work but if Si is strongly present, I don't see why this would not be the case either. In a way Si is more hands-on than Se. My grandmother who is some xSFJ must for example often physically touch things in order to get a sensation "feel" for the object. Similarly, she also insists other touching objects for the same reason. This is very contrary to how I see my ESTP cousin operating. She doesn't need to create such a personal relationship between herself and objects.
The thing about people being convinced you're an INTx type. I was convinced my brother was INTx type. I don't trust that persona anymore.

That's kind of the point I'm getting at with this thread. Why do people have that idea of type to begin with if the MBTI is not intended to measure persona? What is the MBTI type really measuring? What's the purpose of the MBTI?
I know I keep referencing my brother, but he's a wealth of information and my primary source for practically understanding Fi, so bear with me.

No, that's fine.
I don't know exactly which parts of the typical MBTI INFP descriptions that you don't relate to, but I think I guess fairly well.

Let's say, pretty much all of it unless you can dig one out that's actually indicative of type. As a whole INTP profiles tend to describe me better.
One, you're a 5, and that's going to affect a lot of things; two, I have my brother's experience for a point of reference. You've already mentioned that you're not "people-oriented" like a lot of NF descriptions, and you're not outwardly emotive. Fields such as public service, teaching, counseling, and whatever else INFP descriptions say are ideal jobs would not appeal to you. You also don't fit into the humanitarian, soft image of the badly-written INFP descriptions. Let's look at your area of interest: anthropology. It's a very academic, intellectual, research-oriented field, and what people would immediately say, a-ha! that's NT (because of course, SJs, SPs, and NFs can't be interested in such things...fracking Keirsey). But, what an interest in anthropology shows me is a fundamental interest in humanity, which does not contradict INFP in anyway.

On the other hand, I don't see it contradicting an NT-preference either necessarily. My cousin is an ESTP (she's never taken a test so I'm unsure what she'd score but she could score as ESFP maybe, I am not sure if she thinks of herself as a thinker) and is working as a social worker, after all. Which I guess comes back to that in actuality there is little correlation with the jobs we may seek and the professions we possess if judging by actual type, anyway.
It is on a more personal level for you, but what else illustrates Fi better?

Perhaps.
A true INFP is the INFP who, while is sensitive and experiences emotions very deeply and richly, is outwardly cold and aloof, and perhaps apathetic to anything outside their own evaluative and emotional experience. The INFP can be the friendly, easy-going person, but then in a flash is as rigid and immovable and argumentative as the most aggressive ExTJ. Understanding and forgiving of people on one hand, the hypercriticism of mostly themselves but also of others, the perfectionism, and stubbornness on the other hand. I could go on, but I don't see a "true" INFP being different to an MBTI INFP or different to Fi-Ne. Because, I don't see the discrepancy being as great as you describe. The majority of MBTI literature that I own describes INFP very similarly to how I've seen Jungians describe Fi.

Care to give any examples of such literature?
There of course some things that I disregard automatically in these sources. For instance, anything referring to jobs or hobbies, which I believe to be more environment-based than preference-based. But the true meat of the descriptions I believe effectively describe INFP and effectively describe the experience that such a type may go through. When I refer to "true" INFPs, what I mean is simply people who are actually INFPs opposed to people who think they're INFPs based on the fact that "OMG! INFP is the most unique and rare and imaginative and creative type, I'm unique, imaginative, and creative, and emotional and I luv everybody, except for those awful meany thinkers with no souls! <3<3 xoxoxox :3:3, I must be an INFP!!!!!" *700 quazillion thanks received* (I strongly suspect that people who post like that are 13 year old girls).
lol. Doesn't mean they can't be Fi types though, it's just a very different kind of Fi, so to speak (although I suspect many people who are like that are most likely Fe types due to the overt emotional display being expressed which Fi doesn't do). Fi types can't really speak about Fi with other Fi types and expect agreement about what Fi is about because it's experienced so differently by everyone. That's the problem with introverted functions, I guess, due to the experience itself being personal.
But that mentality of typing based on cutely packaged adjectives without digging deeper. But with that sort of display running rampant in the xNFP forums, I see why some who actually uses Fi, i.e. you and several other Fi-Ne users I've interacted with on PerC, would not relate to that sort of thing at all. The good INFP descriptions, I feel, don't misrepresent INFPs in this way. It's mainly the crappy internet ones of dubious origin that do.

Is there any good one you could point to that I could read, then?
 

julesxbm

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Why do you find the INTP profiles sloppy?

So far I've only read Gifts Differing and Knowing Me Knowing You (!). Being new to all this and not particularly sold on MBTI, (and at the moment preferring the simplicity of Jung's superior/inferior with two 'who-cares-what-attitudes' auxiliaries) I still have issues with a lot of the language used: even basic terms are bandied around so glibly as if we all agree what they mean.
'Intuition', even though I clearly use it a lot, is actually a conundrum to me: sixth sense, gut feeling, subconscious ... it seems there's always someone who will muddle one function with another. Intuition is supposed to be based on memory (of past sensing, I guess) and imagination (of future sensing). Yet how is that separate from thinking?
Conversely, 'Sensing' is supposed to be the five senses, but I can't see why vision and hearing, for example, are lumped in with sensory touch.
All five are raw sense inputs and every person uses their raw data in the first immediate instant - but then a split second afterwards, we are emoting, thinking, imagining, remembering. How can all this really be separated?


I haven't even started on my issues with the descriptions of the 16 types, because the foundations seem already too shaky. I have taken a stab at my own type, which seems more true with just the simple descriptors. But as soon as anyone gets into specifics, I start thinking "well, that doesn't sound like me!..."
 

Mal12345

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To be blunt, I think that the MBTI tests are complete rubbish when it comes to measuring Fi.

There is only the MBTI, not "MBTI tests." And it should NOT be measuring functions at all, much less Fi.
 

Flatlander

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Jung made the distinctions of extraversion/introversion and thinking/feeling/intuitive/sensing type, so your dom function is your type. Also the key difference is that jung usually talked about two auxiliary function, instead of aux and tert, both of them being extraverted in introverted type. When you develop one of the aux functions it is more differentiated than the other one.

Personally i think that tert is oriented same as dom and jungs idea of concretism and arhaism is what made him think otherwise. Imo Sensation for example can be both concreistic and introverted, but jung simply saw concrete functions being extraverted.

What I meant is that not everyone seems to fit with what you've (and older MBTI) deemed his mapping of a type (e.g. TiNeSeFe), and in fact it looks pathological to me. To dominate with Ni, for instance, at the comparative exclusion of all other functions (through their extraversion)? Because extraversion to the strongly introverted psyche seems to equate to lack of awareness of the function, it kind of appears as an external force, and the principle probably works the same the other way around. So it all leads back to the idea that having this kind of type is pathological in its own right because you're mostly aware of one factor, a one-track psychology, and lack balance.

Anyway why is it the tertiary that you see as oriented the same as the dominant, not the secondary? Why must the functions differentiate in this way?
 

RaptorWizard

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When I refer to "true" INFPs, what I mean is simply people who are actually INFPs opposed to people who think they're INFPs based on the fact that "OMG! INFP is the most unique and rare and imaginative and creative type, I'm unique, imaginative, and creative, and emotional and I luv everybody, except for those awful meany thinkers with no souls! <3<3 xoxoxox :3:3, I must be an INFP!!!!!" *700 quazillion thanks received* (I strongly suspect that people who post like that are 13 year old girls). But that mentality of typing based on cutely packaged adjectives without digging deeper. But with that sort of display running rampant in the xNFP forums, I see why some who actually uses Fi, i.e. you and several other Fi-Ne users I've interacted with on PerC, would not relate to that sort of thing at all. The good INFP descriptions, I feel, don't misrepresent INFPs in this way. It's mainly the crappy internet ones of dubious origin that do.

Why do INFPs live in bubbles?
 

INTP

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What I meant is that not everyone seems to fit with what you've (and older MBTI) deemed his mapping of a type (e.g. TiNeSeFe), and in fact it looks pathological to me. To dominate with Ni, for instance, at the comparative exclusion of all other functions (through their extraversion)? Because extraversion to the strongly introverted psyche seems to equate to lack of awareness of the function, it kind of appears as an external force, and the principle probably works the same the other way around. So it all leads back to the idea that having this kind of type is pathological in its own right because you're mostly aware of one factor, a one-track psychology, and lack balance.

Anyway why is it the tertiary that you see as oriented the same as the dominant, not the secondary? Why must the functions differentiate in this way?

Its easier to use INTJ as an example with this(due to tert being a J function), according to jung and original version of MBTI, INTJ would be NiTeFeSe.

http://www.wikisocion.org/en/index.php?title=Psychological_Types#Concretism said:
By this term I understand a definite peculiarity of thought and feeling which represents the antithesis to abstraction. The actual meaning of concrete is 'grown together'. A concretely-thought concept is one that has grown together or coalesced with other concepts. Such a concept is not abstract, not isolated, and independently thought, but always impure and related. It is not a differentiated concept, but is still embedded in the sense-conveyed material of perception. Concretistic thinking moves among exclusively concrete concepts and views; it is constantly related to sensation. Similarly concretistic feeling is never free from sensuous relatedness.

Primitive thinking and feeling are exclusively concretistic; they are always related to sensation. The thought of the primitive has no detached independence, but clings to the material phenomenon. The most he can do is to raise it to the level of analogy. Primitive feeling is always equally related to the material phenomenon. His thought and feeling depend upon sensation and are only faintly differentiated from it Concretism, therefore, is an archaism (j.v.). The magical influence of the fetish is not experienced as a subjective state of feeling, but sensed as a magical effect. This is the concretism of feeling. The primitive does not experience the idea of divinity as a subjective content, but the sacred tree is the habitat—nay, even the deity' himself. This is concretism of thinking. With civilized man, concretism of thought consists in the inability to conceive of anything which differs from the immediately obvious external facts, or in the inability to discriminate subjective feeling from the sense-given object.

Concretism is a concept which falls under the more general concept of "participation mystique" (q.v.). Just as "participation mystique" represents a fusion of the individual with outer objects, so concretism represents a mixing-up of thought and feeling with sensation. It is a state of concretism when the object of thinking and feeling is at the same time also an object of sensation. This coalescence prevents a differentiation of thought and feeling, anchoring both functions within the sphere of sensation, i.e. sensuous relatedness; accordingly they can never be developed into pure functions, but must always remain the mere retainers of sensation. The result of this is a predominance of the factor of sensation in the psychological orientation. (Concerning the importance of the factor of sensation v. Sensation; Types).

The disadvantage of concretism is the subjection of function to sensation. Because sensation is the perception of physiological stimuli, concretism either rivets the function to the sphere of sense or constantly leads it back there. The effect of this is a sensual subjection of the psychological functions, favouring the influence of external facts at the expense of individual psychic autonomy. From the standpoint of the recognition of facts, this orientation is, of course, valuable, but from the standpoint of the interpretation of facts and their relation to the individual it is definitely prejudicial. Concretism produces a state where facts gain the paramount importance, thereby suppressing the individuality and its freedom in favour of the objective process. But since the individual is not only determined by physiological stimuli, but also by factors which may even be opposed to the external fact, concretism effects a projection of these inner factors into the outer fact, thus provoking an almost superstitious overvaluation of mere facts, as is precisely the case with the primitive. A good example of this is seen in Nietzsche, whose concretism of feeling resulted in an excessive valuation of diet; the materialism of Moleschott is a similar instance ("Man is what he eats"). An example of the superstitious overvaluation of facts is also provided by the hypostasizing of the concept of energy in the monism of Ostwald.

So basically because INTJs F is concrete i.e. it is triggered and tied together with sensations, jung saw it being extraverted. but imo even tho this might be true to a large extend, i think there is more to it than just this and if you separate INTJ feeling from the equation, you are left with introverted feeling. i claim that introverted feeling is guided by sensations and that this doesent make it extraverted feeling, because the feeling judgment is done by valuation from subjective point of view, despite being led by sensations. mainly because there isnt the same kind of objective value criteria than with extraverted feeling.

jung used nietzsche as an example of having concrete feeling and he happened to be an INTJ. in my opinion this example that he used is an subjective evaluation of worth, but it is tied together with extraverted thinking and sensation.

i mean even if you look at jungs descriptions of functions, you can see that Si fits to INXP and Fi to IXTJ and same with other types. its just that the concept of introversion and extraversion of type has grown quite a bit since his days and most likely because MBTI disregards some of the basics when it comes to I and E, we have been able to figure out that this tert being in opposite direction from dom doesent quite fit. you see concretism is a form of extraversion, but tying that kind of extraversion to functions doesent quite fit when you analyze it further. how i see it is more like with persona, which is an extraverted thing, but ones persona can still be introverted. basically if you act out like an introvert, your persona is introverted, despite as an concept persona(as being the part of the self which you act out) is extraverted.

its pretty complicated subject(which is why MBTI had to dumb it down quite a bit for layperson to understand reasonably easy), but hopefully this helps to clear out some of the stuff.
 

madhatter

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Ultimately this relates back to the purpose of why we type people the way we do and what kind of type leads to the most self-growth. There's a reason the MBTI theory is being propagated in the work place and other places because if you disregard that it may not get Jungian cognition right, the purpose isn't necessarily to get it right but to have people be effective at their job in the work place. If this is how we understand MBTI type than your MBTI type is clearly found by taking a test and being sorted out that way.

If the tests don't get it right, then that person mistyping might not be effective in the work place. There's a teacher at the school where I graduated from, and where I worked for a number of years. The school psychologist gave everyone the MBTI. This teacher I believe is a Fi-dominant, maybe ISFP, but I'm not sure. You know what he tested as? ESTJ. I literally laughed out loud when I saw that result. That man is not ESTJ, at all. If they're operating under the assumption that he's ESTJ, they're not going to be right or meet his needs or make the workplace effective for him.

But then, I gave the test to my sister who came out ISTJ, and it fits her perfectly. So while I don't think tests are always wrong, I think their purpose is to provide a starting point. What the problem is, people take the test read their result and move on. They're not interested in reading further, which is fine. But what affects the test results is more than just preference or persona. Like, my IxFP teacher. He doesn't even have an ESTJ persona. But you know who is ESTJ? His wife. My brother tested as ISTJ twice. He doesn't have an ISTJ persona. But almost every one of his family and friends is ST. The pressure to conform to the dominant preferences of your environment plays a part in the results as well.

We can for example disregard Keirsey's work and say he's not doing MBTI but something else, but he is still considered an MBTI theorist. What makes Keirsey worse than Beebe?

Calling Keirsey an MBTI theorist is being kind. I don't see him as a MBTI theorist at all. He works with temperaments of Galen and Kretschmer and just uses MBTI terminology to dress it up new. He rejects the idea of the cognitive functions altogether. Beebe on the other hand is a Jungian scholar, and uses the functions to understand the archetypes. Completely different ball parks, at least in my opinion.

Contrary to some ideas I've seen floating around the internet forums, MBTI does not reject the idea of cognitive functions altogether. It certainly has grown away from them, but the basis of MBTI was founded on the idea of the existence of these functions. Myers actually grouped her types by them, although ultimately she was more interested in "defining the consequences of each preference" rather than defining "the processes" themselves, which I believe led her to simplify the functions into the simple either/or preferences that MBTI goes by now.

While I disagree with Myers on several of her interpretations, I think my favorite quote from Gifts Differing is this: "Since the superficial aspects of type are often the easiest to report, many trivial reactions are useful for identification, but these are merely straws to show which way the wind blows. They are not the wind. It would be a mistake to assume the essence of an attitude or of a perceptive or judging process is defined by its trivial surface effects or by the test items that reflect it or by the words used to describe it. The essence of each of the four preferences is an observable reality." (23)


A question, but facetious how?

Facetious in that I didn't really think you completely believed what you were saying about typing by profession. Perhaps playing devil's advocate would have been a more appropriate descriptor.

To me, it clearly depends on the perspective you're utilizing how you define the MBTI type as I laid out in the above, and the reason why you seek your type or why someone else would want you to be typed. You could say it's not theoretically correct but again, it comes back to purpose.

I think the purpose of why one is studying or utilizing MBTI is irrelevant, when it comes to actually describing and defining what a particular type is. I have several purposes for doing it, but it doesn't change that this is what an ISTP is, or an INFP, or INFJ, or ESTJ, or whatever. I like utilizing MBTI in the real world, because I like to find real-life examples to help me understand the concepts. Type Talk's description for ISTP says whatever about an ISTP...let's see *madhatter flips through book* okay: "The ISTPs' area of interest will take precedence over assigned tasks that are perceived as dull, boring, or not practical. They become so engrossed with their own projects that other obligations, if not abandoned outright or forgotten, take second place." I would read this, and think, okay, what ISTPs do I know? And I would take a tally (it might be only one, or even none). But with this example, I know plenty. Then I would think, how does this apply to them? Does it apply at all? If so, how? Of all the ISTPs I know, including myself, this phrase is most definitely true. And by the different ways that we all do this, congruent with our own interests, I am able to make an amendment in my mind. If a description says this and it's grossly stereotypical or they're being too literal, take a step back, it can mean this or this.

So how I define a type, I take what I've learned through my readings and online discussions, and compare it with what I know from my own experience. I don't completely reinvent the wheel of the descriptions but I fix in my mind where I think they're broken.

Care to give any examples of how it's Se-like? You could also argue that Ne would seek that too, with constant change in environment but perhaps less interest with hands-on work but if Si is strongly present, I don't see why this would not be the case either. In a way Si is more hands-on than Se. My grandmother who is some xSFJ must for example often physically touch things in order to get a sensation "feel" for the object. Similarly, she also insists other touching objects for the same reason. This is very contrary to how I see my ESTP cousin operating. She doesn't need to create such a personal relationship between herself and objects.

How is action-oriented with an interest in realistic and tangible goals not Se? I don't think Si or Se is more hands-on than the other. I don't touch objects to get a "feel" for it. I touch an object, because I want to see how it feels. I don't need to create a personal relationship with the object either. And I think you misunderstood me. It's not constant change in environment, like I change jobs every three months, like an ENFP that I know. What I'm speaking of when I say "variety" is that I hate routine. At my old job, if I got stuck in one room all day, I would go crazy. Therefore, I was the "swing" employee. I went where I was needed in any given day, I took on special projects, anything I could do to keep myself busy and active, and had tangible work to do. When I'm at work, I can't just sit around and do nothing.

That's kind of the point I'm getting at with this thread. Why do people have that idea of type to begin with if the MBTI is not intended to measure persona? What is the MBTI type really measuring? What's the purpose of the MBTI?

These questions strike me as very INFP. While I'm into more JCF stuff now, in this discussion, I've been referring back to my Type Talk, the first MBTI book I read, and Gifts Differing, because they are the most MBTI books that I have (after Jung, I actually prefer Thomson, Berens and Beebe). I like Type Talk, it has a lot of interesting anecdotal examples of how the types interact in different situations, and the descriptions are decent, I would say three and a half stars (I would say they were really good if they didn't combine their descriptions with Keirsey's temperaments, which is where the stereotypes in their descriptions come from). What you say here reminds me of something that the Type Talk INFP description mentions, how essentially INFPs are always asking such existential questions on a never-ending quest for self-identity. I'm enjoying this discussion, but when I read this, as a Ti-Se, I experienced an internal sigh of slight exasperation, because my mentality is, what does it matter? MBTI is a tool that has many purposes. They are what you need to use it for. What is it measuring? Testable categories and preferences by which you can classify people, which can help you understand differing perspectives. I use it to help me understand how people tick and why they do the crazy things they do. As a Ti-dominant such a system appeals to me, because it gives me an impersonal framework to approach the subject of relationships. That's how I use it, others may use it differently. But questions like these leave me scratching my head. It's not something I think about or deem to be important in the grand scheme of things. I think it a perfect example of differing types and processes.

I think the difference in what you're saying and what I'm saying is, I think that people's mistypes are the effect of the persona, rather than MBTI being the persona itself. The fact that you and my brother both seem INTx is your persona, but since you're not INTx, that is obviously a mistype, or more accurately, the interference of the persona. You both have "thinking" personas, but you don't prefer thinking. I mistyped my mom as ENFJ at first because she has a bubbly, extraverted persona, but she's actually INFJ. That doesn't make her ENFJ in MBTI and INFJ in Jungian functions. She's INFJ in both with an extraverted mask/persona that she feels that she needs to put on and she's felt she has needed to develop that side of herself.

I think that mistypes and why people appear one way in different situations, the exceptions to the descriptions, like you relating to INTx, is what makes studying this typology so interesting. It's like trying to solve a puzzle and you don't know that the end result is supposed to look like. All you have is a thousand jumbled tiny pieces that seem contradictory and leaves you wondering, how do all of these fit together. But, once you find that one piece that all of a sudden connects a huge swath of pieces and allows you to see the overall picture...that's what it's like for me.


Let's say, pretty much all of it unless you can dig one out that's actually indicative of type. As a whole INTP profiles tend to describe me better.

I can definitely see that. When I first starting out, I had five or so descriptions (ISTP, INTP, ISFP, ESTP, ENTP) that I always referred back to, because I related to sections in each of them, but ISTP fit me the best. The reason I don't disagree completely with your connection with MBTI and the persona, because those five types could be construed as different personas that I use at any given time.

On the other hand, I don't see it contradicting an NT-preference either necessarily. My cousin is an ESTP (she's never taken a test so I'm unsure what she'd score but she could score as ESFP maybe, I am not sure if she thinks of herself as a thinker) and is working as a social worker, after all. Which I guess comes back to that in actuality there is little correlation with the jobs we may seek and the professions we possess if judging by actual type, anyway.

I wasn't saying in contradicts an NT-preference at all. On the contrary. But yes, I don't like saying "this type will be in this job." It's too limiting.

The way I see your type, you are NF with a strong secondary NT preference. I am SP with strong NT preference.

Care to give any examples of such literature? ... Is there any good one you could point to that I could read, then?

I really prefer the JCF descriptions, the ones that are the hybrids like Thomson and Berens. I really like Berens' descriptions of the types. I don't know if you've ever read any of those. They're online. Here's the one for INFP: http://www.bestfittype.com/16Types/INFP.cfm. I like Lenore Thomson's book, but I really see her is leaning more on the JCF side, although she is called an MBTI theorist. I haven't read any books by Beebe, just articles on the internet about how he breaks down the functions. (Actually I don't even know if he has written personality descriptions).

I recently found a website called personalityjunkie.com, that has really good descriptions, but with a slight bias towards N, but nothing outrageous or distracting. Again this is more JCF.

Type Talk and its counterpart Type Talk at Work are decent, but flawed for the reasons I mentioned above. I think it appropriately captures the paradox of INFPs being laidback and harmonious one minute and rigid and unyielding the next, and the difficulties an INFP male will face in society. However, Type Talk gets three stars only, for its use of Keirsey temperaments and stereotypes, and because it described INFPs as the "Joans of Arc" of MBTI. That phrase alone knocks off two stars. By cutting such idiotic phrases as that, I think the descriptions would be much better.

I also have read Gifts Differing. There are lots of things that are hit-or-miss with me in this book, especially the S vs N dichotomy. How she portrays S vs N is absolutely outrageous, and is the origin of all the S/N bias experienced to this day. However, when it comes to her short descriptions on the types, there is the general introverted Feeling describing both ISFP and INFP, it's not bad. But I would not put this description on the top of my list, because the S/N thing taints the whole experience.

The Personalitypage.com description are "meh", as is the Typelogic.com description for INFP, a.k.a not worth bothering with.

I haven't read any Quenk, so I can't speak to the quality of her descriptions, but I think she also uses functions combined with MBTI terminology.

lol. Doesn't mean they can't be Fi types though, it's just a very different kind of Fi, so to speak (although I suspect many people who are like that are most likely Fe types due to the overt emotional display being expressed which Fi doesn't do). Fi types can't really speak about Fi with other Fi types and expect agreement about what Fi is about because it's experienced so differently by everyone. That's the problem with introverted functions, I guess, due to the experience itself being personal.

I agree with this assessment.
 

madhatter

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There is only the MBTI, not "MBTI tests." And it should NOT be measuring functions at all, much less Fi.

If you want get to pedantic about terminology, then okay, whatever floats your boat. It doesn't make what I said any less true. My point is, that people who are actually IxFP rarely test that way on the "MBTI".
 

Mal12345

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Let's take this concept of separating the systems a step farther.

The MBTI commonly practiced on this forum is not the original MBTI. It is a fusion of JCF and MBTI. As such, P and J, which didn't exist for Jung, have become simple placeholders. They have no meaning in themselves, they are ciphers. This is how ISTP is differentiated from ISTJ.

If P and J are just placeholders in this fusion of JCF/MBTI, then they can be eliminated and replaced with a different nomenclature system. ISTP would not then be differentiated from ISTJ, so it will necessary to find another way to place the emphasis on the dominant function: let's say, isT (because Ti is dominant) and iSt (because Si is dominant).

But according to the original MBTI, P and J have real meanings, they are not merely used to show which is the dominant function. For example, among other things, they can be used to denote structured (J) and unstructured (P), with regard to a person's lifestyle. (There are other ways to denote these distinctions, such as "planned" versus "spontaneous.")

Therefore, there is no reason not to believe that there can be an iSt (Si dominant) who is either an iStj or an iStp, depending on whether the Si-dominant personality is structured or unstructured, lives according to a strict plan, or is more spontaneous on the whole.

Now according to JCF the Si is either an ISTJ or an ISFJ, according to how the basics of the system are postulated. However, this is a mere postulate, an assumption. I'm not therefore saying that my own postulate is correct, I'm just offering an alternate assumption, one that is just as valid as the JCF assumption because they are both just assumptions.

However, as a result of the second assumption, 32 types, not just 16, are made possible.
 

Mal12345

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If you want get to pedantic about terminology, then okay, whatever floats your boat. It doesn't make what I said any less true. My point is, that people who are actually IxFP rarely test that way on the "MBTI".

The post I just submitted to this thread should demonstrate why this is not a case of either pedantics or semantics.
 
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