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Thread: The biggest flaw of Socionics: misuse of Functionalism

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    Default The biggest flaw of Socionics: misuse of Functionalism

    ...or "The misuse of functionalism in explaining Model A".

    Functionalism postulates that in creating a model of behavior, one does not need to know the absolute reduced attributes of the inner workings of the mind, but rather all he needs to know is the result, and from there he can create an abstract model to fit. This is good, as it helps us understand things that we cannot fully grasp. However, the models people use are often not logically valid, which in turn invites critics to discard functionalism completely. But it is not functionalism's fault; it is only the way people use it that is wrong.

    In Socionics, there is a certain trend to see specific behaviors as attributes of specific functions. THIS IS WRONG, as well as hypocritical. The problem with defining the functions this way is that they become purely definitional, thus losing any and all predictive power.

    And it is completely unfalsifiable. If a feeling type solves a calculus equation, he/she is said to be using Te (or whatever). Likewise, any other behavior is assigned a functional value. Since Socionics has little predictive power, the value of defining functions becomes absolutely nothing.

    Also, the "theory" of Socionics is a complete joke. There is no theory. The only thing we have are observational trends of various people and their behaviors in specific situations. The only thing that we could possibly call a theory is that there are indeed "types". But other than that, Socionics is nothing more than a really bad trait theory.

    I could have done better with my critique, but for now I should say that my argument stands.
    Binary or dichotomous systems, although regulated by a principle, are among the most artificial arrangements that have ever been invented. -- William Swainson, A Treatise on the Geography and Classification of Animals (1835)

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    Yeah, but how to you not know that that person has solved the calculus problem through another means? Like, using and creating some sort of bizaar solution that seems rather orthodox, but can not be disputed?

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    Cone, are you saying that the functions are just descriptions of empirically based observations by people (such as Jung) that we decided to give labels to? Is that a problem? Are you saying that there is not enough theory in socionics? Am I missing your point? How is that a problem?

    And, isn't assuming that, a person with triat A will also demonstrate trait B based off of the model a prediction? Especially if you use VI?
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    Quote Originally Posted by vague
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    I think his beef is taking measures that are either too abstract or too concrete, and not really proving much besides labeling certain behaviours to certain functions and saying they relate specifically to specific functions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocky
    Cone, are you saying that the functions are just descriptions of empirically based observations by people (such as Jung) that we decided to give labels to? Is that a problem? Are you saying that there is not enough theory in socionics? Am I missing your point? How is that a problem?

    And, isn't assuming that, a person with triat A will also demonstrate trait B based off of the model a prediction? Especially if you use VI?
    Jung's work is absolutely not empirically based - if by "emprically" you intend a behaviourist empiricism. Just look at Jung's description of the types, and compare them to the descriptions of socionics.

    Jung's ones are more directed towards the, let me use this word even if probably incorrect, essence of the various types; essence that could very well have been inferred by empirical observations, translated into theoretical frameworks of behaviour.

    Socioncs has no theoretical frameworks of behaviour. Every type has his charateristics, shorty summed up in the descriptions, which are ad hominem frameworks, not general and abstract ones.

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    I agree with Cone's disdain with some individuals attribution of "specific functions" ie so forth as entire motivations or functionality of a specific action...but I cannot see how this reductionist viewpoint gets anywhere or does anything. Taking the same argument let's tear down all psychoanalysis that's not fact based behaviorism. I do not see Functionalism (as the Socionic/Jungian theory of different functions in different roles for a set number of combinations) as flawed as such...it is a theory. To only take the descriptions of Socionics/MBTI of types misses out on the entire idea and point of socionics. If it were only that, I certainly would dismiss it with the Enneagream or whatever behaviorist typism is going these days.

    The true value of socionics for me is certainly not the stereotyping of type descriptions but the Functionalism and the relation types it leads to, which I find leading any other theory of a basically unexplored idea. What still intrigues me is why if a person is an extreme idea person(ENTP), why is it predictable their weaknesses ( ) which nobody seems to argue with. Behaviorally, if someone has this quality, they shouldn't all have this other quality unless there is a personal or behavioral reason, which there is obviously not, thus something else going on.

    Reading further on the brain and how the cortex works, the mechanical functions of it's heirachy makes alot of sense to me that they would be organized into preferred modes of thought...systems of percieving and judging information, to be useful. It seems to predict to me some kind of hidden system along the lines of up down spacially and backwards forwards temporally (thus the number of functions and number of types).

    I fail to see the point of the argument. There's no alternative nor conclusive evidence to remove Functionality from Socionics and no reason to critic it once you've done so(because it's pointless afterwards).

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    OK, Cone... I think the biggest problem with socionics is that it treats every function as a pure function, and tries to organize these individual things into perfect "systems". I'm starting to realize that the functions are not 100% "pure" in that they are somewhat mixed with other functions, and not in any specified amount, which would mean that all the types and systems aren't really symmetrical.
    MAYBE I'LL BREAK DOWN!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by vague
    Rocky's posts are as enjoyable as having wisdom teeth removed.

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    I see socionics as a very advanced personality theory and it gives a lot of perspective to explore the behaviour and the psyche. I also see the functions as true but rather as dimensions so that they can be developed to a different degree in different people and at different times. (Children for example use more their creative functions and develop the base functions later in life - I think! ). For example if you use your weak functions a lot then they become not as week as we suggest according to socionics. Thus we can consider thinking and feeling types who developed differently their weak functions and will see the logical person as not that logical as a feeling person. But as long as you see the type you can understand the person much better as well as his reasons for behaviour. However, it is not only socionics that gives you this kind of knowledge, for example astrology or numerology. These are not theories but the truth and knowledge is still there.

    What I don't like about socionics is the way they describe relationships between the types and how they name those relationships. The thing is that people are not just types and we can be friends with people of the opposite types or we can have nothing to do with those types which supposed to be good for us. The knoweldege of socionics limited as any knowledge on its own. That is why it can be dangerous if you will take it as it is. Critique is always good.
    School of Associative socionics: http://socionics4you.com/

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    This is what I mean.

    Socionics has some inconsistances within itself, such as relationships. Some types have slightley diffrent relationships, yet these inconsistancies are consistant. I hear that types along the Ti-Fe and Ne-Si axises get along better than Fi-Te and Se-Ni.. always. What gives? I thought everything was suppossed to be "symmetrical" and perfect. There are other things, too. For example, Lytov says that some types like the SLI (a P type) tests high on the J scale, and the LSI (the J version) tests as ubber-J. Their opposite types are more heavily P. Also, it seems like sometimes types are more in touch with, say their 8th function (consitantly), while other types are more afraid of that function (consistantly).

    I think this is because some functions are mixed togther like I mentioned above, and not completely seperate things. For example; Si and Ti. IMO, these two dominant types seem to be "crossed" (so Si dominant types naturally use Ti as well, and Ti dominant types naturally have Si). You can prove this be showing that either the SLI (ISTP) and SEI (ISFP) both use Ti in the same way, or that an SLI uses Ti diffrently from an ILI (INTP), or that the LII (INTJ) uses Si diffrently from an EII (INFJ), or an LSI (ISTJ) uses Si diffrently from an ESI (ISFJ), etc...

    I have a few reasons for believing that this is true, but what I am sure of is that the 8 functions aren't perfect individual little "cubes" that you can easily fit into a system.
    MAYBE I'LL BREAK DOWN!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by vague
    Rocky's posts are as enjoyable as having wisdom teeth removed.

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    ^^ Does anyone object to this???
    MAYBE I'LL BREAK DOWN!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by vague
    Rocky's posts are as enjoyable as having wisdom teeth removed.

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    Creepy-pokeball

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    Not specifically. Im glad everything is being looked at more critically, though, even if it is a pain in the ass. Out with the fluff--in with the knowledge =D

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    Quote Originally Posted by rmcnew
    Yeah, but how to you not know that that person has solved the calculus problem through another means? Like, using and creating some sort of bizaar solution that seems rather orthodox, but can not be disputed?
    Consider the person solving the calculus problem using the method developed by Turing.

    "The concept of the Turing machine is based on the idea of a person executing a well-defined procedure by changing the contents of an unlimited number of ordered paper sheets that can contain one of a finite set of symbols. The person needs to remember one of a finite set of states and the procedure is formulated in very basic steps in the form of "If your state is 42 and the symbol you see is a '0' then replace this with a '1', move one symbol to the right, and assume state 17 as your new state."" - wikipedia

    Basically any calculation, no matter it's complexity, can be solved by using nothing more than . In this way produces the same results as ... You may ask "but is that truly doing the calculation?" The process can be made to be identical, the person calculating by does the exact same steps as the person calculating by and runs a much smaller risk of producing errors.

    In my opinion, the functions are indivisible from eachother. Consider that all information which you gather from the external world must arrive through the sensory organs, there is no other way to experience the world around you. On the other hand this information only has meaning byway of conceptualization (intuition) or feelings which together form the basis of thought. Thought could also be seen as the process of consideration of the incoming flow of sensory information in order to develop meaningful patterns and generalities (hence intuitions). Memory is nothing more than thoughts of previous sensory information within a conceptual framework.

    I'm sure there's some serrious logical holes in that paragraph (I'm somewhat stoned) but I think you get the point.

    Any of the behaviors attributed to an individual function cannot be executed without involving some other functions.

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    lol you brang up memory and it reminded me from when one of my psych classes has a guest psychologist administer PEPS. I came up as global + visual. I asked her about global and she said that there is a correlation with those that test global for PEPS and those that test N for Jungian theory. Then I asked her more visual questions (I was persistant because I knew this was a limited opportunity hehe). She said that visuals memory was somewhat different than some because they were more likely to have photographic memories. Im not sure how that ties into here but your thoughts reminded me of that conversation. I also thought it was odd that there is a higher correlation for male visuals than female visuals. Weird, eh? I wonder why? ^_^ Oddly enough, the only other person in my group she set me with was the professor (he stated INFP MBTI). Bummer! I'm so not going anywhere with this =/

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    I don't know if it will make sense what I am translating:

    ENTP -visual scientic (scientist?)
    ISFP - Tactile tradic (trader?)
    ESFj- kinetic tradic
    INTJ - audial scientic
    ENFJ - kinetic linguist
    ISTJ - audial productic
    ESTP - visual productic
    INFP - tactile linguist
    ESFP - visual tradic
    INTP - tactile scientic
    ENTJ - kinetic scientic
    ISFJ - audial tradic
    ESTJ - kinetic productic
    INFJ - audial linguist
    ENFP -visual linguist
    ISTP tactile productic
    School of Associative socionics: http://socionics4you.com/

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    Creepy-heathiep

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    the chatroom that's on irc.sorcery.net.

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    @ Bionicgoat: you can't calculate math problems with Se because Se is a perceptive function. The only functions you can "calculate" with are the rational (judging) functions. Se might be able to take things in clearly, but the actual calculation is done with Ti or Fi.
    MAYBE I'LL BREAK DOWN!!!


    Quote Originally Posted by vague
    Rocky's posts are as enjoyable as having wisdom teeth removed.

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    Since there's so much information to sort through about why Socionics is good/bad, I'm saving the rest of my criticisms and comments for my future article. But for now...

    @FDG: Thank you for your comment, and I'm glad we agree.

    @admin: Yes, I think we should overturn all of psychodynamics, no, I am not advocating pure behaviorism, you are misinterpreting what I meant by "functionalism" (see my original post!), and you said on chat that we should build up from complete reductionism but now you are saying that won't work?

    @Jadae: I've been feeling quite destructive lately. :wink:

    @Bionicgoat & Rocky: Your last two posts show the second biggest flaw in Socionics: various conceptions of the functions resulting in more interpretations than you could ever think of.
    Binary or dichotomous systems, although regulated by a principle, are among the most artificial arrangements that have ever been invented. -- William Swainson, A Treatise on the Geography and Classification of Animals (1835)

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    Creepy-pokeball

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cone
    @Jadae: I've been feeling quite destructive lately. :wink:
    eh, sounds fun to me! Just dont burn my house down :x

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