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Thread: Baruch Spinoza (the Spinozist Guy)

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    Default Baruch Spinoza (the Spinozist Guy)

    Another philosopher and another connection to be made with my past two. I have already shared my thoughts before about Spinoza being an INTj, so I am not going to bother with a blank slate guessing game. To copy and paste from the Famous INTjs (Redux) page.



    Baruch Spinoza: One of the forefathers of the Rationalist school of philosophy and often cited as the first modern pantheist.

    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
    Baruch (or Benedictus) Spinoza is one of the most important philosophers -- and certainly the most radical -- of the early modern period. His thought combines a commitment to Cartesian metaphysical and epistemological principles with elements from ancient Stoicism and medieval Jewish rationalism into a nonetheless highly original system. His extremely naturalistic views on God, the world, the human being and knowledge serve to ground a moral philosophy centered on the control of the passions leading to virtue and happiness.
    Wikipedia
    Spinoza's system imparted order and unity to the tradition of radical thought, offering powerful weapons for prevailing against "received authority." As a youth he first subscribed to Descartes's dualistic belief that body and mind are two separate substances, but later changed his view and asserted that they were not separate, being a single identity. He contended that everything that exists in Nature/Universe is one Reality (substance) and there is only one set of rules governing the whole of the reality which surrounds us and of which we are part. Spinoza viewed God and Nature as two names for the same reality, namely the single substance (meaning "to stand beneath" rather than "matter") that is the basis of the universe and of which all lesser "entities" are actually modes or modifications, that all things are determined by Nature to exist and cause effects, and that the complex chain of cause and effect are only understood in part. That humans presume themselves to have free will, he argues, is a result of their awareness of appetites while being unable to understand the reasons why they want and act as they do.
    Just some random website a biography:
    Baruch Spinoza was born to Portuguese Jews living in exile in Holland, but his life among the Marranos there was often unsettled. Despite an early rabbinical education, he was expelled from the synagogue at Amsterdam for defending heretical opinions in 1656. While engaging privately in serious study of medieval Jewish thought, Cartesian philosophy, and the new science at Rijnburg and the Hague, Spinoza supported himself by grinding optical lenses, an occupation that probably contributed to the consumption that killed him. Private circulation of his philosophical treatises soon earned him a significant reputation throughout Europe, but Spinoza so treasured his intellectual independence that in 1673 he declined the opportunity to teach at Heidelberg, preferring to continue his endeavors alone.

    Spinoza's first published work was a systematic presentation of the philosophy of Descartes, to which he added his own suggestions for its improvement. The Principles of Descartes's Philosophy (1663) contain many of the characteristic elements of his later work, but Spinoza seems to have realized that a full exposition of his own philosophical views would require many years of devoted reflection. In the meantime, he turned his attention briefly to other issues of personal and social importance. The Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (A Theologico-Political Treatise) (1670) is an examination of superficial popular religion and a vigorous critique of the militant Protestantism practiced by Holland's ruling House of Orange. Spinoza disavowed anthropomorphic conceptions of god as both logically and theologically unsound, proposed modern historical-critical methods for biblical interpretation, and defended political toleration of alternative religious practices. Christians and Jews, he argued, could live peaceably together provided that they rose above the petty theological and cultural controversies that divided them.

    Although he published nothing else during his lifetime, metaphysical speculations continued to dominate Spinoza's philosophical reflections, and he struggled to find an appropriate way to present his rationalistic conviction that the universe is a unitary whole. Respect for deductive reasoning and for the precision of the Latin language led Spinoza to express his philosophy in a geometrical form patterned on that employed in Euclid's Elements. Thus, each of the five books of Spinoza's Ethica Ordine Geometrico Demonstrata (Ethics) (1677) comprises a sequence of significant propositions, each of which is deduced from those that have come before, leading back to a small set of self-evident definitions and axioms.

    In Book I Spinoza claimed to demonstrate both the necessary existence and the unitary nature of the unique, single substance that comprises all of reality. Spinoza preferred the designation "Deus sive Natura" ("god or nature") as the most fitting name for this being, and he argued that the its infinite attributes account for every feature of the universe. Book II describes the absolute necessity with which the two attributes best known to us, thought and extension, unfold in the parallel structure that we, with our dual natures, comprehend as the ideas and things with which we are acquainted in ordinary life. This account also provides for the possibility of genuine human knowledge, which must be based ultimately on the coordination of these diverse realms. Spinoza's Tractatus de Intellectus Emendatione (On the Improvement of the Understanding) (1677) provides additional guidance on the epistemological consequences of his metaphysical convictions. Here Spinoza proposed a "practical" method for achieving the best knowledge of which human thinkers are capable.

    Spinoza applied similar principles to human desires and agency in Books III-V of the Ethics, recommending a way of life that acknowledges and appropriates the fundamental consequences of our position in the world as mere modes of the one true being. It would be moral bondage if we were motivated only by causes of which we remain unaware, Spinoza held, so genuine freedom comes only with knowledge of what it is that necessitates our actions. Recognizing the invariable influence of desire over our passionate natures, we then strive for the peace of mind that comes through an impartial attachment to reason. Although such an attitude is not easy to maintain, Spinoza concluded that "All noble things are as difficult as they are rare."
    While none of the bold on their own merit would necessarily make him an LII, on the whole, they at least point to a narrow number of possible types that he could be. He could very well be an ILE, but parts of the bold seem to point to Spinoza at least being -valuing, especially the bit about his propositions "leading back to a small set of self-evident definitions and axioms," which mirrors closely the description of leading-Ti in the LII entry on WikiSocion.
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    I think Spinoza likes the Ti. A lot. He was also supposedly a very mild mannered sweet person if I remember correctly... quiet... introverted... I could see LII.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    I think Spinoza likes the Ti. A lot. He was also supposedly a very mild mannered sweet person if I remember correctly... quiet... introverted... I could see LII.
    I'm sorry. Someone seems to be reading my mind.

    His work from premise to premise and all of his axioms embody my conception of what Ti is all about. He was like crazy logical.
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    Quote Originally Posted by munenori2 View Post
    He was like crazy logical.
    Dizzyingly so. I tried to read through the Ethics a couple years ago... I, um, have meant to get back to it...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    Dizzyingly so. I tried to read through the Ethics a couple years ago... I, um, have meant to get back to it...
    Skimming philosophy sometimes proves to be just as fruitful as trying to figure it out at a slow pace line-by-line, as one may find that issue clarified or a missing piece provided at a later point.
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    Yes, Ti-LII
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Skimming philosophy sometimes proves to be just as fruitful as trying to figure it out at a slow pace line-by-line, as one may find that issue clarified or a missing piece provided at a later point.
    That tends to be my reading pattern (skim the whole first, then sort of delve more and more into it... if I get there). I'm afraid my most severe issues tend to be lack of discipline and concentration, as well as not applying much effort. I think what deterred me with the Ethics was the specific/precise ways in which he was using words that I really needed to keep track of and wasn't willing to apply the effort to at the time. Usually in such instances I'll make a brief list/diagram so I can keep terms straight... but I didn't feel like doing that and then I set the book down meaning to get back to it... and I haven't yet...

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    I agree with Dmitri Lytov's typing of Spinoza; he seems to be an ILI. Here are some arguments for that claim:

    Spinoza was an atheist (pantheism is a kind of atheism). Leibniz (a theist and a clear philosopher, probably INTj) were opposed to Spinoza's theories. As I have said elsewhere, INTj philosophers usually have theist tendencies, whereas ILI philosophers tend to be atheists.

    Spinoza was a determinist and a naturalist. He didn't believe in the existence of a free will, and in that he is different from a typical INTj, because INTjs tend to view humans as agents, subjects, and INTjs also have a clear inclination towards idealistic perspectives. The INTj perspective is typically subjective and dualistic (as seen in for example Kant's and Descartes's philosophies). Descartes's thinking was analytical, Spinoza's thinking was synthetical (indicating a leading N function).

    Spinoza's philosophy is monistic, and in its view on human consciousness it is much more similar to modern materialistic theories ( perspective) in the philosophy of mind. His kind of monism goes back to Parmenides, and, essentially, it is no different from Schopenhauer's view (and methaphysically very similar to a Taoistic perspective).

    Spinoza's perspective was not the subjective, first-person perspective of a Kant or a Leibniz. Instead he adopted a third-person, perspective, in which the universe is seen sub specie aeternitatis. That is an objective perspective, totally different from the kind of perspective a typical INTj tend to adopt.

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    Concur with ILI. What could be more an ILI philosophy than one built on "control of the passions".
    INFp

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wittmont View Post
    Concur with ILI. What could be more an ILI philosophy than one built on "control of the passions".
    Yes, that's another argument for ILI that I for a while considered adding. But I'm slightly unsure of the argument's strength, so I don't want to emphasize it too much.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wittmont View Post
    Concur with ILI. What could be more an ILI philosophy than one built on "control of the passions".
    Ever heard of Stoicism? I hear it was founded by a EII and there was another EII Roman emperor who felt the same way. An intentional control of passions is more IJ. And it is not worth pointing out the numerous errors of logic Phaedrus's argument (essentially the same lines of bogus criteria he uses for other philosophers), so I will not bother.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    And it is not worth pointing out the numerous errors of logic Phaedrus's argument (essentially the same lines of bogus criteria he uses for other philosophers), so I will not bother.
    So far no one has been able to point out any error of logic of mine. Why is that? Is it because you are all bluffing and actually can't spot any logical error? Or is it because you are not sure that your claim is correct because you are unsure of the correctness of your own logical reasoning?

    What are you afraid of? If you really think that there are numerous errors of logic in my arguments, I think you should point them out so that beginners can learn Socionics properly. I am also very interested in learning about the errors of logic that I am accused of making, so that I can correct them if they really exist. The burden of proof is upon you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    So far no one has been able to point out any error of logic of mine. Why is that? Is it because you are all bluffing and actually can't spot any logical error? Or is it because you are not sure that your claim is correct because you are unsure of the correctness of your own logical reasoning?

    What are you afraid of? If you really think that there are numerous errors of logic in my arguments, I think you should point them out so that beginners can learn Socionics properly. I am also very interested in learning about the errors of logic that I am accused of making, so that I can correct them if they really exist. The burden of proof is upon you.
    Circular reasoning. An inability to address the question of "why" when asked for proof or reasoning. Believing something to be a fact by mere proclamation of it being a fact. Gross and incredibly inaccurate generalizations of types. Stubbornness of your opinion in the face of overwhelming counter evidence. Use of conclusions reached as criteria for type. Philosophical categorical errors. An overwhelming reluctance and refusal to admit your error when it is present. Frequent debates of semantics. An apparent lack of reading comprehension or what must be purposeful disregard of evidence presented. I have no interest in dealing with these things again with you in this thread, because to do so would be to derail it in a direction I do not wish to take this thread. And if by my silence you believe yourself to be right and me the fool, then so be it, because I wish to keep this thread focused on determining the type of Baruch Spinoza and not correcting your errors.
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    Dude, I don't want to get of topic for you either. But I wanted to say you just lazered him with Ti. I like reading Ti posts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    An inability to address the question of "why" when asked for proof or reasoning. Believing something to be a fact by mere proclamation of it being a fact.
    I have told you what to read in order to see what every serious socionist agrees on. What I have said about IP and IJ temperament in this thread can't be disputed. Ask others if you are skeptical of my assertions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Gross and incredibly inaccurate generalizations of types.
    They are not inaccurate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Stubbornness of your opinion in the face of overwhelming counter evidence.
    If there is overwhelming counter evidence, why don't you present it? What I have seen so far is much weaker than my arguments. And you are definitely wrong about what you have said about the IP and IJ temperaments. Give yourself some time to consider the possibility that you have misunderstood them instead of insisting that you are right in this case.

    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Philosophical categorical errors.
    Such as?

    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    An overwhelming reluctance and refusal to admit your error when it is present.
    I will admit my error if I can see it. So please show me exactly where my mistake is.

    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Frequent debates of semantics.
    I would gladly avoid them if they were not a necessary consequence of people's misuse and misunderstanding of the important concepts. When it comes to philosophical concepts I really am an expert, so people could really learn how to use them correctly if they listened to me on that.

    And you say that you want to focus on Baruch Spinoza. That's fine, but you haven't presented any counter arguments against what I have said about his philosophy. Why do you disagree?

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    Just read what I have provided along with the Rationalism page on Wikipedia that pertains to Spinoza and ask to yourself: "What self-respecting ILI would believe that? And what self-respecting ILI would derive such a conclusion in that manner?" If you believe that you would, then please seriously reconsider your type as an ILI.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Just read what I have provided along with the Rationalism page on Wikipedia that pertains to Spinoza and ask to yourself: "What self-respecting ILI would believe that? And what self-respecting ILI would derive such a conclusion in that manner?" If you believe that you would, then please seriously reconsider your type as an ILI.
    How much else do you know about rationalism than what is described on that Wikipedia page? Are you aware of the similarities between Spinoza's perspective and Hume's? How do you explain those similarities? And why do you think Lytov has typed Spinoza an ILI? And why do you think socionists have typed for example Socrates an ILI too?

    There is a widespread myth on this forum that the LII is the only type that could have the kind of attitude and the kind of views that we are talking about here. Both LIIs and ILIs are logical types, both a NT Researchers, both value reason very much. But there are subtle differences between them, and you don't seem to be aware of those differences.

    This is actually very, very important, and it has been discussed many, many times. There is a serious problem here, and it has to do with the Socionics type descriptions of LIIs and ILIs. Those descriptions give us a misleading picture of those two types when it comes to their philosophical views (the descriptions are mostly correct in other respects).

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    Logos, what type do you think Leibniz was?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    How much else do you know about rationalism than what is described on that Wikipedia page? Are you aware of the similarities between Spinoza's perspective and Hume's? How do you explain those similarities? And why do you think Lytov has typed Spinoza an ILI? And why do you think socionists have typed for example Socrates an ILI too?
    There are more similarities between Spinoza and Leibniz and Kant and Descartes (& Einstein) than between Spinoza and Hume. Hume's similarities? Being a post-Spinoza thinker. It is kind of like how there is a great deal of similarities between Hume and Kant. I think that Lytov is incorrect in his typing of Spinoza, and I have more than sufficient reason to suspect LII > ILI for Spinoza.

    There is a widespread myth on this forum that the LII is the only type that could have the kind of attitude and the kind of views that we are talking about here. Both LIIs and ILIs are logical types, both a NT Researchers, both value reason very much. But there are subtle differences between them, and you don't seem to be aware of those differences.
    And there are some widespread myths that you have about the conclusions of LIIs vs. ILIs, so you would do well to heed your own advice.

    This is actually very, very important, and it has been discussed many, many times. There is a serious problem here, and it has to do with the Socionics type descriptions of LIIs and ILIs. Those descriptions give us a misleading picture of those two types when it comes to their philosophical views (the descriptions are mostly correct in other respects).
    It is misleading primarily for you it seems.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Logos, what type do you think Leibniz was?
    I am suspecting ENFj, but I would first want to look at his life more closely and on the same level as I have with Spinoza. But even if he was INTj, get this shocking idea, people of the same type will and often do disagree! Look on this forum for all the proof you need.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    But even if he was INTj, get this shocking idea, people of the same type will and often do disagree! Look on this forum for all the proof you need.
    What? You mean everyone who is of a certain type needn't share philosophical viewpoint or perspective on the world?

    Poppycock!
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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    If Phaedrus think it's ILI... then it must be ILE or LII.

    My logic is undeniable.
    It's a fact.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    If Phaedrus think it's ILI... then it must be ILE or LII.
    There's actually more truth in that statement than you are probably aware of. This phenomenon pops up now and then, and it has been discussed too, but not in enough depth yet. What we see is that -- based on functional descriptions -- some famous thinkers have been typed LII or ILE, when they at the same time would be typed differently based on the Socionics criteria for introversion and/or irrationality.

    We can see the phenomenon in the type descriptions, where the ILE type has been given the role of harbouring many of the irrational, dreamy and absent-minded scientists, who actually fit Jung's introverted intuitives much better than his extraverted intuitives. And we can see that the LII type is harbouring most of the philosophers due to the supposed link between the function and philosophy in general. The socionists have decided to ignore clear indications of introversion in favour of their functional explanation, in which you need to have and in your ego block (and thus be an Alpha) to be considered a member of the group of famous scientists or philosophers. If you are clearly introverted you become an LII thinker; if you are clearly irrational you become an ILE thinker. The other two types in the main group of scientists/philosophers (the group of NT Researchers) -- the LIE and the ILI -- are put in another group of business-minded people with little or no interest in science and/or philosophy. And the socionists ignore the fact that there are, and always has been, fundamental differences between philosophers that cannot be explained if we assume that philosophy in general is linked to .

    This is a real myth in Socionics. It is a fundamental mistake in the theory of Socionics to grop the scientists and the philosophers along the quadra lines -- at least it is a mistake in the minds of those socionists who let themselves to be fooled by slightly inaccurate type descriptions and a superficial understanding of the functions.

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    Thank goodness then that such a mistake is not happening here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    Thank goodness then that such a mistake is not happening here.
    How do you know that it isn't? You should become suspicious, since it is evident that your conception of the IJ and IP temparements are different from mainstream Socionics. Maybe you have formed your views on the types almost solely on the functions? If that is the case, you cannot avoid making the kind of mistakes I am talking about.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    How do you know that it isn't? You should become suspicious, since it is evident that your conception of the IJ and IP temparements are different from mainstream Socionics. Maybe you have formed your views on the types almost solely on the functions? If that is the case, you cannot avoid making the kind of mistakes I am talking about.
    How do you know that it is?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Logos View Post
    How do you know that it is?
    I haven't said that I believe that a mistake has been made here. I only know that what you have said about the temperaments isn't true, and that your arguments for believing that Spinoza is an INTj are no better than the arguments for INTp.

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    Well what do you think are the strengths and weaknesses of the argument for Spinoza being an LII?
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    A few points:

    - it's pointless to speculate why Lytov typed Spinoza as ILI if he doesn't say so himself. I respect his views on socionics a lot; but I have seen evidence that he doesn't always look at each individual in detail before typing them; for instance, he is inclined to type any communist dictator as LSI by default. So without knowing how much thought Lytov put into that typing, it's a useless discussion.
    - I don't know that much about Spinoza but from the evidence that Logos selected, I think Ti is clear.
    - As for IJ, I also think that having as a goal the following of strong personal rules is IJ, as it is also characteristic of enneagram 1. Since Phaedrus loves the argument "so-and-so says that, are you going to say that he's wrong", I will say that this is pretty much how one of his heros, Smilingeyes, defined the IJ temperament.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    *sigh* I still have Phaedrus on ignore, but I'm making an exception due to a request -- yeah, not .

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Spinoza was an atheist (pantheism is a kind of atheism). Leibniz (a theist and a clear philosopher, probably INTj) were opposed to Spinoza's theories. As I have said elsewhere, INTj philosophers usually have theist tendencies, whereas ILI philosophers tend to be atheists.
    Being an atheist or theist, specifically, says nothing of value with regard to socionics functions. , as well as , can lead either way - you can find a sense of structure, or of a "larger truth", both by believing in a god or by disbelieving in one. Unless you want to say that being necessarily leads to theism, which I think it will be very hard to prove.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Spinoza was a determinist and a naturalist. He didn't believe in the existence of a free will, and in that he is different from a typical INTj, because INTjs tend to view humans as agents, subjects, and INTjs also have a clear inclination towards idealistic perspectives. The INTj perspective is typically subjective and dualistic (as seen in for example Kant's and Descartes's philosophies). Descartes's thinking was analytical, Spinoza's thinking was synthetical (indicating a leading N function).
    This is Phaedrus's own convoluted typology which has nothing to do with socionics functions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Spinoza's philosophy is monistic, and in its view on human consciousness it is much more similar to modern materialistic theories ( perspective) in the philosophy of mind. His kind of monism goes back to Parmenides, and, essentially, it is no different from Schopenhauer's view (and methaphysically very similar to a Taoistic perspective).
    A lot of benchmarking with philosophers that says nothing about which functions are being used. And why does a "materialistic theory" have to be ? How would Marxism fit?


    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Spinoza's perspective was not the subjective, first-person perspective of a Kant or a Leibniz. Instead he adopted a third-person, perspective, in which the universe is seen sub specie aeternitatis. That is an objective perspective, totally different from the kind of perspective a typical INTj tend to adopt.
    Again, nothing to do with socionics understandings of those functions.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Still on this --

    Socionics is not particularly concerned with philosophers. Typing philosophers for fun, and for discussing socionics, is useful; but when cross-checking different philosophers becomes more important than simply analysing which functions each philosopher is using, independently, then you're simply evading the socionics analysis for the sake of comparing philosophers. Which is something very natural if you feel much more confident in you knowledge of philosophers than of socionics.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    Still on this --

    Socionics is not particularly concerned with philosophers. Typing philosophers for fun, and for discussing socionics, is useful; but when cross-checking different philosophers becomes more important than simply analysing which functions each philosopher is using, independently, then you're simply evading the socionics analysis for the sake of comparing philosophers. Which is something very natural if you feel much more confident in you knowledge of philosophers than of socionics.
    +1

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    And why does a "materialistic theory" have to be ? How would Marxism fit?
    Marxism is not the kind of materialistic theory I am talking about here. Marxism fits very nicely in this scheme of things. Take a look at Karl Popper's The Open Society and its Enemies part 2, for an explanation why. You will understand Popper perfectly. He is a perfect example of a philosopher with a typical realist/materialist perspective. He is different from a typical ILI philosopher, though.

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    Creepy-Cyclops

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    Take a look at Karl Popper's The Open Society and its Enemies part 2, for an explanation why. You will understand Popper perfectly. He is a perfect example of a philosopher
    How can you be sure of this? You were asked on another forum to explain Te and you said you couldn't do it.

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