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Thread: Ni and Negative Capability

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    Default Ni and Negative Capability

    I've said this on like five different threads, but I figured I'd actually make a full thread about it.

    I think that Ni relates to Keats' idea of Negative Capability. Negative Capability is defined as that state "when man is capable of being in uncertainties, Mysteries, doubts without any irritable reaching after fact & reason." Ni seems to be related to this capacity to work productively in uncertainty. Just as Se lives in a very certain, defined world (external statics of objects involves the least mental manipulation of any of the functions, it is the most directly attached to the external world, it is pure sense perception taken as fact), and this produces many if not most of the qualities we associate with Se (decisiveness, confidence, resoluteness), Ni lives in a very uncertain, undefined territory (internal dynamics of fields is the most mental function, the function furthest from the objective world; also, a great metaphor can be drawn to "undefined" functions in mathematics or to Heisenberg uncertainty in physics), and as such takes to situations of uncertainty where there is a lack of facts or certainty like a fish to water.

    The obvious example is poetry, much of which is written by Ni-egos. Poetry (especially American poetry, which is heavily Emersonian) is all about throwing away the old forms and disregarding old certainties and reevaluating everything through one's self. When Whitman talks about "creeds and schools in abeyance" he is using an external metaphor for an internal process of not believing in anything that we consider to be certain, like religion. Similarly, when Rimbaud talks about becoming a "seer" by a "rational derangement of the senses," he is also using an external metonymy for an internal process; to stop believing in that which we take for granted is like not receiving information from any of our senses. And the thing is, poets, like Keats and like Shakespeare, work productively in the uncertainty that results from the disavowal of basic conceptual assumptions. They make their own discoveries with the aid of intuition, and above all they describe things even as they recognize that what they describe is contradictory. But in the metaphorical act of "speaking" the contradictory world, they in some ways create order out of chaos. They make valuable observations by trying to describe the world without any of the old conceptual models, without any facts or certainties.

    There's also a good comparison to contemporary physics (more a gamma NT activity than a beta NF one, in general); we discovered that the old conceptual models were rubbish (that was largely Einstein's doing, I suppose), and now we're trying to build new ones, to conceive of a world made of strings rather than particles or some craziness like that.

    This also relates to the principle weakness of Ni-superego (especially in delta STs): a lack of Negative Capability. An inability to work productively in situations wherein there is uncertainty and and mystery and doubt and a lack of facts. So LSEs can't really operate if you don't give them any facts to work with. They can deal with some blurring of the boundary lines, but when you tell them that the boundary lines we've assumed all along actually don't exist, and that none of the "facts" apply, they can't work effectively. This is a principle source of conflict between LSEs and IEIs. The IEI says that life is inherently uncertain, mysterious, and that's okay. The IEI has to believe this, because otherwise, life is boring. The LSE, on the other hand, says that life is full of indubitable or at least obvious facts, and we have to deal with those facts. The LSE has to believe this, because otherwise, life is nonsensical, and you can't make any progress.

    In summary, there are some situations, including, possibly, the state of socionics in the West, in which there are no clear-cut facts, no basis or foundation of data that is commonly agreed upon as true, no certainty. True tragedy is one of these situations. It is in these situations that Ni-egos shine, and Ni-polr types have the hardest time. Ni is the function most suited to uncertainty, lack of clarity. Thus Ni is an intellectual/spiritual/psychological pioneer just as Se is a physical/practical pioneer. Ni makes strangely accurate guesses by observing the situation with minimal givens. Ni as a mode of thought works productively in uncertainty. It is "I don't know the facts, but I have a guess." In situations when the facts are truly unavailable/nonexistent (rather than the Ni-ego was just too lazy to go find the facts), Ni shines.

    Some related thoughts. (feel free to stop reading here)

    I've been generally considering this in terms of IEIs, beta Ni, which is paired with another very abstract function, Fe. But Te is the second most concrete function (after Se). So this produces two possible hypotheses about ILIs and gamma Ni. Either a) gamma Ni manifests this quality to a lesser degree than beta Ni, because it is "grounded" as it were by Te, or b) there is a sense in which Fe represents a sort of certainty just as Te does, and ILIs/gamma Ni has a similar sort of uncertainty, just related to a lack of Fe-certainty (for which I do not have a name) rather than a lack of Te-certainty (which we can call "facts" or "data"). Maybe part of the clue to hypothesis b is in Falstaff, who, Harold Bloom says, has perfect faith in language, where Hamlet has no faith in language (that is, he's in doubts, mysteries and uncertainties, even about the language of which his thoughts about doubts, mysteries, and uncertainties is comprised). Since Falstaff is clearly an Fe-leading type, maybe he in some way exemplifies the "Fe-certainty" I'm questing after.

    How does this all relate to Ne? Isn't Ne also capable of being in mysteries and uncertainties? But "irritable reaching after fact" is pretty much a perfect xEI description of Te-seeking/valuing. What is the difference between Ne dealing with uncertainty and Ni dealing with uncertainty? Maybe both of the intuitive functions are good with this kind of stuff? I don't really have answers here.

    How does this differ from or relate to Descartes' Radical Doubt, which to me is a much more LII sort of thing. How does it relate to rationalism or the lack thereof?

    I'd also love a delta perspective on this, especially LSE. It must seem like just the opposite to LSEs, like IEIs are creating confusion where there is none or something (whereas I find that LSEs are clinging to an illusion of certainty where there is none). I remember Ryu made a blog post once that very much influenced by view of Te, wherein he argued that delta Te most purely seeks the truth, and from an aspectonics POV, this makes sense to me: delta Te is the closest thing to the objective world that will submit to mental manipulation. It is, in some ways, the perfect marriage of objective and subjective, or the limit of objectivity that will still submit to be taken subjectively, that can still be examined as a mental "object" or fact. But I can't quite get my mind around how deltas view these facts as essential and primary to nature, and yet my theories on life tell me that facts are just as essential and natural as uncertainty (see: wave-particle duality--or in this case wave-particle conflictality, lol), just somehow from a different angle. If I'm going to become magic and type transcendent like Shakespeare (or at least do a good job of making Te-valuing characters as more than stereotypes), I really want/need to figure this out.
    Last edited by silverchris9; 03-23-2010 at 09:42 AM.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    you're a trip silverchris. nice post. love how you think about your conflict, so IEI. i guess your conflict is lucky.

    you ask how does Ne look at things? Ne is glad that things are not certain, since Ne wants to manipulate, morph, and change things. Ne works around obstacles that won't move, always looking for a better way. if this mouse trap won't work then i'll just try that one. when Ne is blocked by the unchangeable and is faced with the issue of acceptance, that can be a temporary frustration. when something offers little to no mystery, or possibility, that sucks. Ne looks at uncertainty as a puzzle i think.

    ILE

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blaze View Post
    you ask how does Ne look at things? Ne is glad that things are not certain, since Ne wants to manipulate, morph, and change things. Ne works around obstacles that won't move, always looking for a better way. if this mouse trap won't work then i'll just try that one. when Ne is blocked by the unchangeable and is faced with the issue of acceptance, that can be a temporary frustration. when something offers little to no mystery, or possibility, that sucks. Ne looks at uncertainty as a puzzle i think.
    I think this is Rational/Irrational (leaning toward Pe) rather than Judicious/Decisive. That is, I think that SLEs are more likely to relate to this than LIIs are.

    I've described creative in the past as trying to account for all possibilities, to limit uncertainty.



    LII-Ne

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    Ne see one thing (one important thing means) not the plentitude of things and opportunities, that's when Ne is in the third spot. One significant idea that is novel and facinating.

    "More important what it means, how it corrects our previous
    perceptions or our future. Intuitive types build a general
    understanding of the world, where objects and people are
    worthless without their connections to other people and
    objects
    , without their past and future, without their hidden
    qualities and meanings. An object or a person by itself is
    not attractive to an Intuitive type. More important is why
    this object or person came to his/her life at this stage of
    life, what hidden meaning this object/person brings with it,
    how it changes the future or the past. Often times Intuitive
    types can easily tell how a certain object, quality or process
    will develop over time just because they always trace
    objects, qualities and processes in time
    , and just know the
    rules."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maritsa33 View Post
    More important what it means, how it corrects our previous
    perceptions or our future. Intuitive types build a general
    understanding of the world, where objects and people are
    worthless without their connections to other people and
    objects
    , without their past and future, without their hidden
    qualities and meanings. An object or a person by itself is
    not attractive to an Intuitive type. More important is why
    this object or person came to his/her life at this stage of
    life, what hidden meaning this object/person brings with it,
    how it changes the future or the past. Often times Intuitive
    types can easily tell how a certain object, quality or process
    will develop over time just because they always trace
    objects, qualities and processes in time, and just know the
    rules.
    Where is this from? It sounds like a description of specifically.



    LII-Ne

    "Come to think of it, there are already a million monkeys on a million typewriters, and the Usenet is NOTHING like Shakespeare!"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brilliand View Post
    Where is this from? It sounds like a description of specifically.
    It's more Ne; it's also similar to Ni; Ni primary can also access Ne. Just like I can access Ni easily.

    Ne "They see the
    potential, not yet
    apparent."

    Ni is time.

    I see the potential of this forum as being the forefront of Socionics and assistance with type in the future for not only people interested in Socionics reference but also for serious students of Socionics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maritsa33 View Post
    It's more Ne; it's also similar to Ni; Ni primary can also access Ne. Just like I can access Ni easily.

    Ne "They see the
    potential, not yet
    apparent."

    Ni is time.
    sees the potential of particular things, quite opposite to what you describe there. The connections involved in this decision will be provided by or .

    as time is covered quite well by this segment:
    Often times Intuitive
    types can easily tell how a certain object, quality or process
    will develop over time just because they always trace
    objects, qualities and processes in time, and just know the
    rules.
    The rest tends to fall under as per "internal dynamics of fields" and whatnot, which was supported by Augusta as a more abstract way of viewing the elements.



    LII-Ne

    "Come to think of it, there are already a million monkeys on a million typewriters, and the Usenet is NOTHING like Shakespeare!"
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    both can see development
    sees more time as real time and it's play in now, or what will happen if you don't take care of something now....for example Plynex said he is very concerned about time so is my mom, because she knows what will happen later while can do the same but is not concerned about the real time.
    is universal time
    is real time

    If I as INFj... act this way towards this person then there's a potential that this will develop or that; so I will choose which one I can act on that I would like.

    inverse for ENFj

    There's a potential this or that to happen with this person or that behavior.

    It's hard to explain.
    Last edited by Beautiful sky; 03-25-2010 at 03:34 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brilliand View Post
    sees the potential of particular things, quite opposite to what you describe there. The connections involved in this decision will be provided by or .
    That is true.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maritsa33 View Post
    Ne see one thing (one important thing means) not the plentitude of things and opportunities, that's when Ne is in the third spot. One significant idea that is novel and facinating.
    sees one thing, yes - that is "objects" the attribute of all Xe elements. But curiously, I disagreed with this statement... because while sees one thing at a time, I would expect it to see things more often if in a stronger position (i.e. 1st spot rather than 3rd spot). So how is this that sees less when in a stronger position?



    LII-Ne

    "Come to think of it, there are already a million monkeys on a million typewriters, and the Usenet is NOTHING like Shakespeare!"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blaze View Post
    you're a trip silverchris. nice post. love how you think about your conflict, so IEI. i guess your conflict is lucky.
    lol. Thanks. I just like talking about LSEs because I feel like I understand them fairly well, if only for the reason that I can normally take what I would think, flip it inside out in a way that wouldn't be harmonious, and that's the LSE take on things. It's a great way to make both sides clearer by contrast.

    you ask how does Ne look at things? Ne is glad that things are not certain, since Ne wants to manipulate, morph, and change things. Ne works around obstacles that won't move, always looking for a better way. if this mouse trap won't work then i'll just try that one. when Ne is blocked by the unchangeable and is faced with the issue of acceptance, that can be a temporary frustration. when something offers little to no mystery, or possibility, that sucks. Ne looks at uncertainty as a puzzle i think.
    But do you want to deal with a certain amount of givens, or are you cool with no givens at all? It's probably just selfish aristocracy speaking, but I like to think Ne is a little closer to the ground than Ni. But I could be way off there.

    I've described creative in the past as trying to account for all possibilities, to limit uncertainty.
    This is closer to how I'd like to see Ne (for the sake of everything fitting neatly into my system. But I accept that Ne might not fit into my system. But certainly it seems that the way Ne helps delta STs is to allow them to account for every possibility, which makes them not have to face the unknown, but without having to deal with the sort of vibes of unknown-ness that you'd get from Ni's seemingly random predictions. Also, Ne possibilities seem to be concerned with essentials of things, and thus what is possible according to the facts of the case or the evidence at hand, whereas Ni tends to be (in my opinion; I recognize that this may be invalid) less tied to the facts and hand.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    This is closer to how I'd like to see Ne (for the sake of everything fitting neatly into my system. But I accept that Ne might not fit into my system. But certainly it seems that the way Ne helps delta STs is to allow them to account for every possibility, which makes them not have to face the unknown, but without having to deal with the sort of vibes of unknown-ness that you'd get from Ni's seemingly random predictions. Also, Ne possibilities seem to be concerned with essentials of things, and thus what is possible according to the facts of the case or the evidence at hand, whereas Ni tends to be (in my opinion; I recognize that this may be invalid) less tied to the facts and hand.
    this sounds right for delta quadra or for Ne in the creative position. i do believe that Ne is more reality based than Ni. Ni is the more intuitively intuitive function lol. i guess i wanna say that uncertainty is not a preoccupation of alpha, at least not for ILE. ILE is pretty chaotic and while possibilities are always being developed for a way around things. they're like little time bombs that go off at opportune moments. you always have something to offer up. i am not sure if this is a strategy to combat uncertainty. to my mind, you never know what's going to happen anyway....so you plot a strategy, knowing that it may or may not work out and knowing that even if it doesn't you have some other trick up your sleeve.

    so perhaps you are right in that the above describes a back door approach to handling uncertainty; that Ne can function that way for others around an Ne leading. so if that is the case it's folks with Ni in the superego block who benefit from that back door approach most. but the Ne leading doesn't worry about uncertainty much.

    ILE

    those who are easily shocked.....should be shocked more often

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    This is closer to how I'd like to see Ne (for the sake of everything fitting neatly into my system. But I accept that Ne might not fit into my system. But certainly it seems that the way Ne helps delta STs is to allow them to account for every possibility, which makes them not have to face the unknown, but without having to deal with the sort of vibes of unknown-ness that you'd get from Ni's seemingly random predictions. Also, Ne possibilities seem to be concerned with essentials of things, and thus what is possible according to the facts of the case or the evidence at hand, whereas Ni tends to be (in my opinion; I recognize that this may be invalid) less tied to the facts and hand.
    My issue with this is that the way being resistant to uncertainty is being described, it seems to apply more to PoLR than super-id. I think in the case of Delta STs the bolded part would have more to do with strong, valued than or . (just my $0.02, but I've been thinking this since the beginning of this thread, and finally decided just to say it)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    My issue with this is that the way being resistant to uncertainty is being described, it seems to apply more to PoLR than super-id. I think in the case of Delta STs the bolded part would have more to do with strong, valued than or . (just my $0.02, but I've been thinking this since the beginning of this thread, and finally decided just to say it)
    I think you may have a point. I'm having trouble articulating the difference between Ni-polr's fear of uncertainty and Ne-polr's fear of uncertainty. The best way I can say it is to focus on internal and external. Ne-polrs fear external uncertainty that undermines an internal system (both Fi and Ti, while not normative at their most basic level, do tend to create normative systems or "rules"). Ni-polrs fear internal uncertainty/instability that undermines external judgments. For instance, an LSE usually wants to judge a thing as true or false absolutely. But then along comes Ni-ego and says that well, yeah, from this angle it's true, but then also from this angle it's false, and then from this other angle, it's true AND false... that annoys LSEs. That's sort of a weak example, but perhaps where I'm going is making sense?

    Do you see the uncertainty I'm describing as being something that Ne-polrs would be uncomfortable with, but with which Ni-polrs would be more comfortable?

    In the bolded part I was trying to emphasize the relationship to Te or Ti, but the more I think about it, I do begin to doubt it. But then what is the difference, again, between uncertainty on an Ni level and uncertainty on an Ne level?
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    Just some thoughts..

    first off, as I understand it, Ni-base types function and flourish within uncertainty, but I think Ni is misconstrued as being described as uncertainty. Ni types have an imagination which penetrates uncertainty in order to dissolve it. These types are fully aware of the infinite uncertainty (Ne-id), but they want to look beyond that in order to find certainty. Often, they produce insight but must relinquish to the idea that nothing is certain which is why they are characterized as such. This is why they value bold, confident, and grounded Se types who deal with everything as if it is certain. It allows them to take a step out of their mind and just act on their insight.

    Ne-base types love uncertainty. It gives them direction and purpose for discovery, analysis, novelty, etc. They need to experience reality in full as imaginary constructs are meaningless and assumed realities are counter-intuitive and block their sense of purpose.

    In a word each:

    Se: Known
    Ni: Imagination
    Ne: Unknown
    Si: Experience

    you can kinda see how they compliment, how Ns and Ss are strong at their respective elements, how they want to expand their valued strength, and how they want to escape their devalued strength especially in the case of irrationals.
    Last edited by Azeroffs; 03-25-2010 at 10:14 PM.
    3w4-5w6-9w8

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    I'm just not sure about this. I'm not sure if PoLRs have a fear of uncertainty at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    Ni-polrs fear internal uncertainty/instability that undermines external judgments. For instance, an LSE usually wants to judge a thing as true or false absolutely. But then along comes Ni-ego and says that well, yeah, from this angle it's true, but then also from this angle it's false, and then from this other angle, it's true AND false... that annoys LSEs. That's sort of a weak example, but perhaps where I'm going is making sense?
    I'm also not sure about this. So far the type I associate with wanting to judge something as absolutely true or false (the most) is LSI. I don't know that LSE has an issue with this, as they just navigate in their universe of ever-changing facts/info/events and feel entirely able to interpret all of it practically and concretely (at face value). I think that Delta STs are fine with something being both true and false depending which way it's looked at (although in a more concrete viewing of things I guess it couldn't be both). They probably like to see it from more angles (Ne super-id). They would probably not be fond of mystical interpretations of things though that don't match up with the factsTM as they see them, and find such interpretations a waste of time and/or nonsensical if they're presented as the "one truth on high" of things, or something. And they can be critical of what they see as ignorant and misinformed opinions.

    I think that PoLR is more afraid of uncertainty and things popping up seemingly out of nowhere to get in the way of their goals and therefore they try to account for everything that could go wrong beforehand ( HA) out of a paranoia that anything could come up to foil everything.

    I mean, these are the stereotypical ways I've found the distinction to be viewed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    I'm just not sure about this. I'm not sure if PoLRs have a fear of uncertainty at all.

    I'm also not sure about this. So far the type I associate with wanting to judge something as absolutely true or false (the most) is LSI. I don't know that LSE has an issue with this, as they just navigate in their universe of ever-changing facts/info/events and feel entirely able to interpret all of it practically and concretely (at face value). I think that Delta STs are fine with something being both true and false depending which way it's looked at (although in a more concrete viewing of things I guess it couldn't be both). They probably like to see it from more angles (Ne super-id). They would probably not be fond of mystical interpretations of things though that don't match up with the factsTM as they see them, and find such interpretations a waste of time and/or nonsensical if they're presented as the "one truth on high" of things, or something. And they can be critical of what they see as ignorant and misinformed opinions.

    I think that PoLR is more afraid of uncertainty and things popping up seemingly out of nowhere to get in the way of their goals and therefore they try to account for everything that could go wrong beforehand ( HA) out of a paranoia that anything could come up to foil everything.

    I mean, these are the stereotypical ways I've found the distinction to be viewed.
    My experience is that Ne PoLRs find it hard to sit still in times of uncertainty. They want to be doing something towards the outcome they desire, so they may sometimes mess things up just by doing something out of frustration when everything would have turned out alright had they left things alone. Though of course the fact that they act often means that they'll get results in some form or another. I think that Ni PoLRs deal worse with uncertainty, but may appear to be ok with it because they can pretend the situation doesn't exist in order to cope. :-p They'll just go about their lives as normal until things clear of their own accord. I guess I would agree with the honourable silverchris9 that the prize for incompetence in times of uncertainty should go to the Ni PoLRs.
    "Language is the Rubicon that divides man from beast."

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    Perhaps we can make an analogy with and ? Based on some posts that I read in Smilingeyes' thread, acts upon the known, whereas monitors and manages the known (seeking to achieve the desired result with as little action as possible).

    Likewise, in an uncertain situation, will begin actively doing things, investigating, overcoming the uncertainty and accomplishing things. will watch and comprehend what is going on within the uncertainty, but will only act as needed and after understanding (whereas acts as part of reaching understanding).



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    Quote Originally Posted by Brilliand View Post
    Perhaps we can make an analogy with and ? Based on some posts that I read in Smilingeyes' thread, acts upon the known, whereas monitors and manages the known (seeking to achieve the desired result with as little action as possible).

    Likewise, in an uncertain situation, will begin actively doing things, investigating, overcoming the uncertainty and accomplishing things. will watch and comprehend what is going on within the uncertainty, but will only act as needed and after understanding (whereas acts as part of reaching understanding).
    Oh man.. I thought I had it figured out. Now I'm confused again. :-p
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubicon View Post
    Oh man.. I thought I had it figured out. Now I'm confused again. :-p
    I thought your post was good (and I'm not sure that it even contradicts Brilliand's).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loki View Post
    I thought your post was good (and I'm not sure that it even contradicts Brilliand's).
    lol thanks.. rereading it, I spoke too soon :-p
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubicon View Post
    Oh man.. I thought I had it figured out. Now I'm confused again. :-p
    I thought the same thing briefly when I read your post. I wouldn't want to oppose observations with speculation. But no, our posts can both be true at once; I only talked about Intuitives and you only talked about Sensors. With both of our posts combined, we stated, in general, that Static types act in the face of uncertainty whereas Dynamic types watch passively (comprehending in proportion to the strength of their Intuition).

    It seems an odd thing to say about EIEs, but I can't be sure that it's wrong.



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    Quote Originally Posted by Brilliand View Post
    I thought the same thing briefly when I read your post. I wouldn't want to oppose observations with speculation. But no, our posts can both be true at once; I only talked about Intuitives and you only talked about Sensors. With both of our posts combined, we stated, in general, that Static types act in the face of uncertainty whereas Dynamic types watch passively (comprehending in proportion to the strength of their Intuition).

    It seems an odd thing to say about EIEs, but I can't be sure that it's wrong.
    I guess we make good activity partners then
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinocchio View Post
    I don't think that Ne types are motivated by uncertainty, but they just fear, like you said later, false constructs, established things that block them find the true association of things.
    This applies to me (hence, unlike many of the things said about , it is not for Irrationals only).



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    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    I've been generally considering this in terms of IEIs, beta Ni, which is paired with another very abstract function, Fe. But Te is the second most concrete function (after Se). So this produces two possible hypotheses about ILIs and gamma Ni. Either a) gamma Ni manifests this quality to a lesser degree than beta Ni, because it is "grounded" as it were by Te, or b) there is a sense in which Fe represents a sort of certainty just as Te does, and ILIs/gamma Ni has a similar sort of uncertainty, just related to a lack of Fe-certainty (for which I do not have a name) rather than a lack of Te-certainty (which we can call "facts" or "data"). Maybe part of the clue to hypothesis b is in Falstaff, who, Harold Bloom says, has perfect faith in language, where Hamlet has no faith in language (that is, he's in doubts, mysteries and uncertainties, even about the language of which his thoughts about doubts, mysteries, and uncertainties is comprised). Since Falstaff is clearly an Fe-leading type, maybe he in some way exemplifies the "Fe-certainty" I'm questing after.

    How does this all relate to Ne? Isn't Ne also capable of being in mysteries and uncertainties? But "irritable reaching after fact" is pretty much a perfect xEI description of Te-seeking/valuing. What is the difference between Ne dealing with uncertainty and Ni dealing with uncertainty? Maybe both of the intuitive functions are good with this kind of stuff? I don't really have answers here.

    How does this differ from or relate to Descartes' Radical Doubt, which to me is a much more LII sort of thing. How does it relate to rationalism or the lack thereof?
    Until I reached this part I was going to write exactly the same - I think it's Ni, but also very IEI perspective. There's poetry I enjoy, and I think exactly what poetry you like is too individual to be ascribed to type, but I'd say a lot of what was said there is Fe-related. I completely agree with Ni as dealing with uncertainty - creating entire story out of a fact (idea? it doesn't have to be real) or two is what Ni-imagination is about, or at least mine is. Whereas Ne, I think, is more about making up these ideas. Randomly placing the dots vs connecting them? Ne places the dots and often the way of joining them is obvious, while Ni joins what it has, which allows it to predict where other dots will be. Ne-dots might appear seemingly out-of-the-blue... it seems as random to me as "seemingly random Ni predictions" mentioned earlier must seem to others. Discrete vs continuous, states vs change. There doesn't have to be a dot at the end for Ni to work, just as there doesn't have to be a line for Ne - but without them, they run wild (probably are a lot more creative, too).

    Quote Originally Posted by Pinocchio View Post
    I think Ni types are pretty much doubtful, but actually in the opposite way of Ne and what you described there as Negative Capability. I think they're continuously looking for a certainty they can't provide themselves. That mysterious thing they all the day have the feeling that exists "out there" is like what keeps them carry on. They see so many possibilities and so many people with ideas, so many "I got it" and "evrikas" that they are distrustful of all this bazaar and are continuously searching for that one and only reference, the standard where you can compare everything and tell its value.

    This above is what it appears to me at least, and I think they go practically the opposite way than Ne types, in a way: Ne's have the continuous feeling that people relate to de-facto standards and overlook the details, the difference that other things - foreign things, unknown things which appear from time to time - make always and break all the establishments. I think Ni types put that on the fact that we didn't find our reference, yet, and this is our problem.
    This is how Ti appears to me . Looking for absolute truth, one and only one unchangeable reference. I think the reason we get this idea of each other - because I know LII and ILE who felt like that about me, and I about them - might be because of static/dynamic misunderstanding.

    I won't use the same reference for considering different issues; often it'll change midway, together with the issue, if these are even separable. Yes, reference is importance - context is everything. Dots might be independent, but points on line are not. No, I'm not looking for *one* ultimate reference, or whatever. It would be like limiting myself to a single dimension.

    I can see where you're coming from with "they think this is our problem" - I had enough arguments with aforementioned Alphas for that. It seems to me as if they used one and only one reference regardless of whether they're discussing fantasy, politics or quantum physics. It'd be more accurate to say I think their problem is often not considering any context, or dismissing it as unimportant. This probably has some benefits (completely absurd/fantastical, random ideas), but overall seems ineffective.

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    Regarding the question of how what I describe differs from Ne, I think the difference is really encapsulated in terms of internal and external.

    Ne-valuers work productively in situational uncertainty. I define situational uncertainty as uncertainty about what will happen. For instance, it's uncertain how the bacteria will react to being put in an environment with chemicals x, y, and z. This is wonderful, fruitful uncertainty for Ne-valuers. Ni-valuers do their best to eliminate situational uncertainty. But it can also apply to things that seem more "internal". For instance, what will the meaning of the metaphor in line 1 of the sonnet turn out to be by the sonnet's end?* Situational uncertainty is an external uncertainty insofar as it is concerned with how events external to the self will unfold.

    Ne-valuers work less productively in conceptual uncertainty. I define conceptual uncertainty as a state wherein the relationships between signifiers and signifieds is unclear. For instance, in socionics, it's unclear what the IMs mean; there's no "objective definition" of the IMs beyond aspectonics, which is not that objective after all, because no one can agree on what exactly internal, external, fields, objects, statics, and dynamics mean. But that can also apply to things that seem more "external". For instance, if you receive unclear instructions from someone which leaves it unclear as to what objects or actions the individual terms in the instructions pertain. Ni-valuers work productively in conceptual uncertainty; we'd probably guess what the person was referring to by piecing together the system and concluding, "oh, he must mean x when he says y." Conceptual uncertainty is an internal uncertainty insofar as it is concerned with how the self should perceive the world.

    I understand that the words "uncertainties" and "mysteries" might seem to pertain to Ne/"situational uncertainty," but as Keats means them, they refer to "conceptual uncertainty".

    Some further thoughts:

    Ne-valuers see "situational uncertainty" as an opportunity. An LII sees an uncertain situation as an opportunity to gather valuable data. Ni-valuers see "conceptual uncertainty" as an opportunity. An ILI sees, for instance, the uncertainty as to what matter is composed of as an opportunity to discover a new and more accurate paradigm (or "conceptual framework") for matter: maybe string theory, maybe something else. Experimental science is more Ne: questions about what will happen providing valuable data. Theoretical science is more Ni: questions about what data means, or better yet, how we should think about the data in the first place providing valuable opportunities to find a way of seeing things that better accounts for all the facts. Note that Ni is more abstract that Ne here: Ne is closer to the physical object by experimenting on actual things; Ni is farther from the physical object by focusing on questions of perception, or how to see.

    Ni-valuers (especially betas) tend to try to remove "situational uncertainty" as quickly as possible, by deploying Ni to say "this is what will happen." Ne-valuers (especially deltas) tend to try to remove "conceptual uncertainty" as quickly as possible. I don't know how they do it though.

    Ni-polr pertains to difficulty reading ambiguous signs. This obviously has many implications. It helps flesh out our understanding of why caretakers are don't like victims, whereas aggressors do. Caretakers see ambiguous signs as confusing, unnecessary, and unpleasant. Aggressors see ambiguous signs as an opportunity for resolving the uncertainty, which they find pleasurable. It also relates to the Aeneid, wherein Aeneas (a portrayal of and commentary on the LSE Caesar Augustus) constantly has trouble reading signs.

    Introverted judging functions (Fi and Ti) try to make static forms (which often turn into rules) which are used by alphas and deltas to overcome conceptual uncertainty. For instance, when an ESE runs up to an LII and tells them about their day, they want help with interpreting unclear signs. The LII uses Ti to give them generalized rules that are applicable to all situations, since it's unclear what rules apply to this particular situation (if that makes sense). The Ti-style "universal laws" must be applicable to this particular uncertain situation, and as such resolves the uncertainty. I have a similar or analogous thought about how the extroverted judging functions deal with situational uncertainty, but I'm too tired to finish that idea.

    Also, I've gotten a little bit clearer idea of how Ni-polr manifests in ESEs relative to this. I hope to post about it soon.

    I'm also not sure about this. So far the type I associate with wanting to judge something as absolutely true or false (the most) is LSI. I don't know that LSE has an issue with this, as they just navigate in their universe of ever-changing facts/info/events and feel entirely able to interpret all of it practically and concretely (at face value). I think that Delta STs are fine with something being both true and false depending which way it's looked at (although in a more concrete viewing of things I guess it couldn't be both). They probably like to see it from more angles (Ne super-id). They would probably not be fond of mystical interpretations of things though that don't match up with the factsTM as they see them, and find such interpretations a waste of time and/or nonsensical if they're presented as the "one truth on high" of things, or something. And they can be critical of what they see as ignorant and misinformed opinions.
    Interesting. I think that LSIs are the most interested in judging a proposition absolutely true or false, creating universal laws that are true or false always (just as Fi tries to create bonds that resist external change, so Ti tries to create laws--which bond two concepts just as Fi bonds two individuals--that resist external change). I think that LSEs are the most interested in assuming that something is absolutely true or false. In other words, it seems to me that LSIs are interested in resolving conceptual uncertainty by determining what is true and what is false, which is not that different from determining what exactly a given sign means. LSEs on the other hand, seem to me more interested in dismissing conceptual uncertainty and assuming that "the facts" are "the facts," that facts are absolutely trustable and secure, that certain givens are just givens.

    first off, as I understand it, Ni-base types function and flourish within uncertainty, but I think Ni is misconstrued as being described as uncertainty. Ni types have an imagination which penetrates uncertainty in order to dissolve it.
    Good point. That's a clarification I should have made. Ni is interested in dissolving uncertainty, but not by trying to establish "facts" or running after a logical "reason" for something to have happened. Ni dissolves uncertainty by "feeling it out," determining what "must be" the case, not because of correspondence (as discojoe is fond of saying) but because of coherence; it only "makes sense" if sign a means x and sign b means y.



    *I provide this example from my experience, although I may not have explained it well. In one of my English classes, I have a seminar leader who is IEE. While she generally likes my analysis of poetic imagery, she tends to say that I skip to the "meaning" of the poem too quickly. Instead, she suggests that I evaluate the meaning of each device, and then come to a conclusion about the whole poem, rather than reading the whole poem, skipping to "what the poem means," and then reading each device in the light of that meaning. I see this as an Ne-Ni conflict, or at least analogous to an Ne-Ni conflict: Ne wants to delay a conclusion about the "theme" or "message" of a poem; Ni wants to delay a conclusion about the "meaning" or "purpose" a specific device. It's a subtle distinction, and maybe non-existent, but I think it may be valuable.

    Incidentally, one of my classmates who I know to be SEI absolutely adores her. When he mentions it, I internally smile and think: semi-duals!
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    Another note on Ne vs. Ni and uncertainty:

    Actually, the more I think about it, the more I think that you could hypothetically put any kind of uncertainty on a sliding scale from Ni to Ne, and while things at the extremes would be pretty clearly something for Ne to deal with or something for Ni to deal with, things in the middle can be seen from either viewpoint, and engaged productively from either viewpoint. A good example of something in the middle comes from the music thread. To me, "use of eclectic, "random" melodic structures, styles, and concepts within the same composition" produces uncertainty. You can come at it from an Ne point of view, which is more like "oooh, what's going to happen next, surprise me, how's it going to unfold, etc." or you can come at it from an Ni point of view, which is more like, "how does this come together; what's the unified whole under all this chaos; what's the general impression I get from all these swooshes and changes and differences." Both types are likely to think that the other missed the point: the Ne person is likely to chide the Ni person for focusing too heavily on the meaning (in the sense of the unified impression given by all this chaos) and ignoring the variety, and Ni person is likely to chide the Ne person for focusing too heavily on the variety and ignoring the meaning. The reason I provide this example is because it shows a type of uncertainty that both Ne and Ni types can enjoy, but that they would be likely to come at (even if subconsciously) from different perspectives. Poetry is another example. Actually, most art can probably be interpreted either from a perspective that focuses on signfiers and signifieds or from a perspective that focuses on how things will unfold/resolve/end.

    Also, I don't know that Ne really tries to overcome situational uncertainty (which is just another way of saying external uncertainty), but Ni definitely tries to overcome conceptual uncertainty, only by a slow and careful method. I guess the best way to say it is just to focus on the fact that Ni-valuers want situational uncertainty (which is just another way of saying internal uncertainty) resolved ASAP (and are thus willing to take the possibly less nuanced route to fixing it), but are willing to linger a little longer in conceptual uncertainty, while Ne-valuers are the opposite.

    Also also, this has lead to some interesting reflections on the difference between Ne/Si types and Ni/Se types. One interpretation of Ne/Si is to say that they want their uncertainty external to themselves and their sensations internal. That is, they want all the mysteries to be in the outside world: what would Paris be like? How does DNA work? What reasons could she have for behaving that way towards me? They want as few mysteries as possible on the inside; they want clear relationships between signifiers and what they signify. Although wanting clear signified-signifier relationships also seems to relate to Ti somewhat, so I need to find the difference between the Ti version of signifier-signifieds and Ni signifier-signifieds.

    Ni/Se types, on the other hand, want no uncertainty in the outside world: "this is how we deal with things, these are the rules, I know what course of action to take, and if I don't, I can figure it out ASAP." They like their uncertainty to be of a more internal character: "what is the meaning of life? What does it mean for me to take this action or that action? What does Wallace Stevens mean by the phrase, 'the hum of thoughts evaded in the mind'?" They want clear, immediate information about how things will turn out, but are willing to think a little longer about what certain things "mean".

    Ne ennui is external: it occurs when the outside world seems like it holds no surprises. An example would be "I hate this town; I've already seen everything and everyone in it, and now there's nothing new to experience." Ni ennui is internal: it occurs when it seems like the patterns (which, as mental conceptions, are "internal") will never change. An example would be "I'm sick of life; everyone will always behave the same and no one will surprise me. It's not that I want people to surprise me just because I want someone to do something random; I want people to surprise me so that I have to shift my inner conception of how people work, 'cause once I understand something perfectly, it becomes sort of boring." Ne ennui occurs when there's a lack of external uncertainty. Ni ennui occurs when there's a lack of internal uncertainty. Also, this relates to what Wallace Stevens (ILI) means when he talks about ennui of the first idea: the "first idea" is the Theory, Form, or Idea of Everything (and therefore is Everything), and if one understands the the Theory of Everything, then one becomes hideously bored. Also, I'm beginning to see the shades of a perspective wherein a gamma Ni type might see Gamma Ni as more abstract than Beta Ni, in a way, precisely because of its objectivity.

    Also, this implies that Freud was an Ni-ego, because he was all about the relationship between the signifiers in our lives and what they signify about our consciousness.

    Language metaphor: when I talk about signifiers and signifieds, I don't actually mean that Ni really works in that way, focusing on what is signified by a given sign. What I mean is that the relationship between signifiers and signifieds is a great analogy for how Ni works. Also note that Ni does not seek a static relationship between signifiers and signifieds; it assumes that the signifier, the signified, and the relationship between the two, is all in constant flux, and that rather than trying to pin them down and make them unchanging, we should instead track the flux, guess where they're going next, figure out how the relationship changes and is changing. It's more of a second-order theory: rather than "this is how x works" it's "this is how x changes".

    Math metaphor: Ni is concerned with the graph of the derivative rather than the graph of the function (because Ni sees the function as inherently too erratic to be graphed productively).

    Also, this is curiously similar to Lenore Thompson.

    I need some Ti to come in and clean this up, because it's just a series of random, unfocused observations/thinking out loudness.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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