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Thread: Is Socionics a Belief or a Theory?

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    Default Is Socionics a Belief or a Theory?

    A science teacher from my childhood once told me that truth is the intersection of belief and knowledge. Knowledge without belief is stubborn and close minded. Belief without knowledge is blind and intellectually irresponsible/dishonest.
    While I'm sure anyone who has studied even basic epistemology will be bored by the following, it is necessary to define what we may discuss;

    Knowledge; Evidence, reasoning, existing or proposed formulae (including existing postulates/theories). Generally measurable and testable. Ex; the length of a pencil.
    A belief is something that is believed to be true but has nothing that can be described as 'knowledge' to back it up. Ex; belief in a higher power.
    A theory ideally an equilibrium in the amount of intersecting belief and knowledge, leading to a consensus of 'truth', ex; The Theory of Gravity.


    Based on these definitions, is Socionis a theory or belief?
    If it is a theory, what kind of knowledge does it have reinforcing its claims?
    If it is a belief, for what reason should we believe in it?


    These are questions everyone should ask themselves before accepting socionics. If we could try to provide some answers here, I and anyone with similiar desire to live a life untouched by superstition and fanatacism will be greatly appreciative, even if it leads to the conclusion that socionics is a belief.


    I make this topic because I have have been trying to eliminate 'beliefs' that are taken for granted in my life. Socionics has recently been a problem. Until now I have been mostly able to justify my interest in it by running circles around anyone who tried to disprove it by referring them to commonsensical notions like T, F, N and S. However, recently I have encountered opposition that suggests that while all commonsensical ideas regarding socionics may exist independently and codependently alike, there is really nothing I can provide to make them believe they arrange themselves neatly into 16 types.

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    Creepy-male

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    Knowledge; Evidence, reasoning, existing or proposed formulae (including existing postulates/theories). Generally measurable and testable. Ex; the length of a pencil.
    A belief is something that is believed to be true but has nothing that can be described as 'knowledge' to back it up. Ex; belief in a higher power.
    A theory ideally an equilibrium in the amount of intersecting belief and knowledge, leading to a consensus of 'truth', ex; The Theory of Gravity.
    By your very definition of knowledge, it would be a theory, since it has components of knowledge, in that it has internally coherent reasoning to explain real-world observed phenomena. A belief in contrast has no such reasoning. It's like my spiritual beliefs in higher dimensions; they're wholly illogical and utterly arbitrary (and I have no illusions that they're anything to the contrary, but they're not something I particularly feel need much logical treatment.)

    Even if it were merely a belief, once you are versed in it, it has accurate predictive powers. It arms you with predictions about how things are likely to turn out between yourself and any other given (healthy) individual. That's at least a starting reason.

    The issue comes from the fact that it's an abstract system that does not deal with any measurable real-world phenomena, and requires the development of skills to apply, thus introducing elements of subjectivity (even though there can be varying levels of convergence as to interpretations of single real-world things).

    EDIT

    "Belief without knowledge is blind and intellectually irresponsible/dishonest."

    I disagree. It becomes dishonest when you don't acknowledge its limitations as merely a belief. Irresponsible perhaps, but I would disagree with anyone saying that's necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes it helps people to just have a source for introducing some meaning or comfort into often a harsh and meaningless world. Not everyone can thrive off their own cold intellect.

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    It's a belief based on induction from a weak empirical foundation. Belief based on induction is not intellectually dishonest as long as the person is overt about the fact that his/her claims are based on such reasoning.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanks Arthur View Post
    ...
    But what knowledge? All I've ever studied on socionics is one description after another. There is an abundance of descriptions, an excess of claims; I have yet to see anything explaining why the descriptions are justified or why they describe just 16 types.

    I fear I've studied for years to accumulate a enormous wealth of knowledge and mastery over something that exists in a completely different dimension.
    And beliefs (that exist independent of the knowledge described above) are harmful. Their existence within yourself is a crime to yourself and to humanity as many of them are seemingly harmless but blind us to the reality of the situation, causing us to make unethical decisions that are not supported by reality.

    edit;

    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    It's a belief based on induction from a weak empirical foundation. Belief based on induction is not intellectually dishonest as long as the person is overt about the fact that his/her claims are based on such reasoning.
    But why do you then believe it? Induction from what - what leads us to this guess? It is a short logical jump to infer the existence of the dichotomies and simple aspects to do with the IEs, but an enormous leap to infer the existence of 16 types in which all these things are arranged in most every human.

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    Here's how I would say it:

    Knowledge is information of which you are aware. This includes evidence, reasoning, etc. that you have encountered and assimilated into your memory.
    A belief is knowledge that you hold to be true. Some beliefs are backed up by evidence and logic, some are not. The former are rational beliefs, the latter are irrational. Note that this does not mean that the latter are necessarily untrue, it simply means that they cannot be proven rationally.
    Evidence is information about the world that can be directly observed. This generally includes anything that can be measured or tested.
    A theory is an explanation of the aspects of the world that cannot be directly observed. Because of this, a theory is never as "certain" as evidence is, it can only be more or less likely to be true. The two primary things which affect whether a theory is likely to be true are logical correctness and consistency with the evidence. If a theory violates the laws of logic, it cannot be true. Furthermore, in the areas where the theory touches on aspects of the world which can be directly observed, it must accurately describe those aspects, or it cannot be true (i.e. it must be consistent with the evidence).

    In other words, the most you can say about a theory is that it is logically correct and consistent with the evidence. The more evidence you have which is consistent with the theory, the more likely it is to be true, but this can never be proven beyond all doubt (which is why courts only require the jury to be certain beyond "reasonable" doubt).

    Socionics, therefore, is a theory. In my opinion, it is a logical theory, and consistent with the available evidence. However, there is not as much evidence available in this field as there is in, say, physics or chemistry. This is a problem for psychology generally, not just socionics specifically, because both deal with the inner workings of the mind, which are not directly observable.

    To put it all together, socionics is a theory which I believe to be true, because I have knowledge of much relevant evidence and logic, and have concluded that it is consistent with both.
    Quaero Veritas.

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    Socionics is a model. It seeks to describe human relationships.

    The simplest way to have a network of interacting nodes is to have each node have an "in", and an "out". (This is your ego block; the other 3 blocks are just ways of describing specific phenomena related to your specific "in" and "out"--they are logically superfluous and exist solely for clarity's sake.)

    As for why there are 8 functions and not some other number, that is a Socionics history lesson I cannot administer.

    etc etc can someone please finish this thought for me?

    EDIT

    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    And beliefs (that exist independent of the knowledge described above) are harmful. Their existence within yourself is a crime to yourself and to humanity as many of them are seemingly harmless but blind us to the reality of the situation, causing us to make unethical decisions that are not supported by reality.
    That is a result of their abuse, not their use. The minute you use Socionics as a script is the minute you cross into abuse. I have not had this problem of abuse except in one situation. In all other respects Socionics has been a boon and helped me to understand and let other people do as they please, and there have been many similar reports both on the forums and from people I have introduced the theory to in the real world.

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    Knowledge is more commonly defined as "belief that corresponds with reality".

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    Knowledge is more commonly defined as "belief that corresponds with reality".
    How is reality defined?
    You can do anything with a bayonet except sit on it.

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    3w4-5w6-9w8

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    How is reality defined?
    The body of consistent factors that have an existence independent of the mind and subjective experience.

    But let me tell you this: your post takes the discussion in the direction of the less intelligent and more obfuscatory. Reality is not a term with an ambiguous meaning, no matter how far you urge me to break up it's definition. You have to establish your fundaments at some point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krig the Viking View Post
    ..
    Hm.. I understand your definitions and they make sense. I can see socionics as having application in that you see it working around you. But what about this; once you're looking for it, it suddenly becomes apparant to you; the christian seeking his miracles will surely find one, the faithful searching for a sign will undoubtedly make sense out of some random encounter, the person flipping a coin may end up flipping it until he gets the option he would have wanted in the first place... you trick yourself.

    In short; if you justify socionics through your personal experience with its truth around you ('evidence that you have assimilated into your memory') how can you know that you aren't ignoring certain aspects of human relationships that contradict the theory (i.e. the numerous situations in which types DO NOT conform to their descriptions) while reinforcing and reliving the moments that do?
    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    Knowledge is more commonly defined as "belief that corresponds with reality".
    To you I would ask the same questions I do to Krig.
    Quote Originally Posted by Thanks Arthur View Post
    Socionics is a model. It seeks to describe human relationships.
    The simplest way to have a network of interacting nodes is to have each node have an "in", and an "out". (This is your ego block; the other 3 blocks are just ways of describing specific phenomena related to your specific "in" and "out"--they are logically superfluous and exist solely for clarity's sake.)

    As for why there are 8 functions and not some other number, that is a Socionics history lesson I cannot administer.

    etc etc can someone please finish this thought for me?
    But why why why; how do you know a model of any sort could represent the complicated and irrational state of human relation? Why a network of interacting nodes and why an in and an out? And (ofc) why 8 functions, 16 types? If these questions cannot be answered but with more claims and unsupported conclusions it would be a great blow to the 'theory'.
    Quote Originally Posted by Thanks Arthur View Post
    That is a result of their abuse, not their use. The minute you use Socionics as a script is the minute you cross into abuse. I have not had this problem of abuse except in one situation. In all other respects Socionics has been a boon and helped me to understand and let other people do as they please, and there have been many similar reports both on the forums and from people I have introduced the theory to in the real world.
    With this I must resign myself to agree. If I were to condemn any and all beliefs I would condemn myself in doing so; there are simply things we take for granted in order to survive. Additionally, I can see certain beliefs that are excercised with caution a harmless endeavor that deserves no condemnation, but if you are going to qualify yourself for this group you must take care not to excercise your beliefs when making decisions that affect anyone but yourself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    But why why why; how do you know a model of any sort could represent the complicated and irrational state of human relation? Why a network of interacting nodes and why an in and an out? And (ofc) why 8 functions, 16 types? If these questions cannot be answered but with more claims and unsupported conclusions it would be a great blow to the 'theory'.
    You do know what a model is, don't you?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanks Arthur View Post
    You do know what a model is, don't you?
    For a moment I was unconfident in my use of the word; however, after looking up the term, it appears it has many, many different meanings. I will assume you mean the one that says something like;
    Quote Originally Posted by Random Website View Post
    A representation of a system that allows for investigation of the properties of the system and, in some cases, prediction of future outcomes. Models are often used in quantitative analysis and technical analysis, and sometimes also used in fundamental analysis
    My question still stands. How can you be sure the realm of human relations in any way fits into a comprehensive 'model' as described above?

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    In very, very simplified terms, a model is a way of describing something complex in simpler terms. You usually do that by making assumptions that limit the amount of variables you're forced to deal with.

    For example Socionics is a form of cybernetics, studying the networking of complex psychological systems (human beings). These constructs can be simplified to perceptual inputs (accepting functions) and social outputs (producing functions). As for why 8 functions, and as for why the rules as to what these functions can be paired with, Augusta and the group she brainstormed with decided on that for whatever reason they did due to what they had observed happening in the real world. Someone else needs to fill in that history lesson though.

    Thus we have a model.

    To answer your question, how can I be sure? Anything can be modelled. The useful question to ask is, is your model useful? Does it find the balance between wieldiness and accuracy? A bad model either takes too much into account and is rendered inoperable, or it takes too little into account and fails to adequately describe or make predictions about that which it originally sought to model.

    More catchy version: a bad model is either a poor simulation or an excellent waste of time.

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    Socionics is a belief. It barely rates a hypothesis. Reasons why it is not a (scientific) theory are simple: It is not falsifiable, it makes no testable predictions, it is hardly parsimonious, there's not even a mechanism described for how it works, and there is extremely little precedent for it in existing theory. Evidence is anecdotal at best, and most of the people interested in these fringe models of personality are laypeople (i.e., you) and suffer heavily from confirmation bias.

    /end thread

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    Socionics is a belief. It barely rates a hypothesis. Reasons why it is not a (scientific) theory are simple: It is not falsifiable, it makes no testable predictions, it is hardly parsimonious, there's not even a mechanism described for how it works, and there is extremely little precedent for it in existing theory. Evidence is anecdotal at best, and most of the people interested in these fringe models of personality are laypeople (i.e., you) and suffer heavily from confirmation bias.

    /end thread
    Ah, but the purpose of the thread does not stop in the identification process. It goes on to ask why we should believe in socionics, or why you personally believe in it.

    @Arthur;
    if your model fails to predict properly what it describes it is also a poor model, regardless of how general or complicated it is. Does socionics reasonably predict relationship outcome? Maybe. Depends on your perspective, especially if you want it to predict relationships right.

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    it makes no testable predictions
    The intertype relations are testable under the right set of experimental conditions. The only obstacle is finding some way to measure the level of compatibility between two persons. The right set of survey questions should do the trick, though.

    Problem is, the Russians could easily have come up with this idea themselves and have probably engaged in such testing. The fact that after about 30 years there is still no interest in the theory among the scientific establishment in the west speaks volumes about how successful they must have been at it.

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    I've debated this so much, I won't do it again. So I just say, everyone who calls socionics a belief (in the usual sense) should inform him/her self on the subject called 'the philosophy of science'.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    Socionics is a belief. It barely rates a hypothesis. Reasons why it is not a (scientific) theory are simple: It is not falsifiable, it makes no testable predictions, it is hardly parsimonious, there's not even a mechanism described for how it works, and there is extremely little precedent for it in existing theory. Evidence is anecdotal at best, and most of the people interested in these fringe models of personality are laypeople (i.e., you) and suffer heavily from confirmation bias.

    /end thread
    just curious, is economy a belief according to your criteria?

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    The problem with trying to explain human behavior is that to explain it requires another human to observe and explain that behavior. And this other person will have their own human behaviors. It is one human behavior trying to figure out another human behavior. And then we have the problem of the inception of each interaction we take and the butterfly effects that then unfold as we each interact with each other. Humanity is essentially a volatile entity and I imagine this is the problem you have with the model?

    We have to recognize that to completely define humanity, without what we would consider any error, is essentially an impossible task because we are limited in our volatile scope of observation and actions, that to think we can fully understand them might paradoxically cause us to lose what makes us sentient, and then we are only left with having to rationalize things as usefully as we see fit while knowing we have to make assumptions to do so. So we actually have two considerations that we have to make in evaluating any psychological theory. Firstly, is the system adaptable to how events change in the future? And secondly, does it aid you in finding insight into the past human behaviors of interaction?

    Some might believe that the greatest system is one that has an infinite amount of factors and is able to predict and describe and define every facet of human interactions and be completely undeniable. This would then be called real science to many. But it can be shown that to acquire such a thing from our perspectives is to exist outside of this world, and that it would indeed be impossible for us to obtain.

    In fact, the problem you have Skeptic is the same problem that many have with the study of psychology. It is in many ways the same problem. Psychology attempts to assert itself as fact and truth when it is just simply not a valid claim.

    But I think the difference here is that the Socionics model is both adaptable and insightful when thoughtfully applied. This makes it useful in its own way. In fact, it might just be the fact that it makes you think about why something occurs between people that it then creates its usefulness. It's the fact that no one will tell you that it is truth or real undeniable science (like with much psychology theory) that allows it to then be useful. It's the people who are so quick to tell you what is and isn't true regarding any form of psychology are the ones I am skeptical of and the theories I prefer not to indulge in too much in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    Socionics is a belief. It barely rates a hypothesis. Reasons why it is not a (scientific) theory are simple: It is not falsifiable, it makes no testable predictions, it is hardly parsimonious, there's not even a mechanism described for how it works, and there is extremely little precedent for it in existing theory. Evidence is anecdotal at best, and most of the people interested in these fringe models of personality are laypeople (i.e., you) and suffer heavily from confirmation bias.

    /end thread


    it's more than just a belief. it does make testable predictions. one prediction it makes is that conflictors will have a negative effect on each other and duals a positive effect. that is just one example of a million other predictions it could make based on the growing amount of knowledge and understanding we are gaining everyday. we could easily do studies ourselves. ok they wont be perfect but at least it would be a start.

    for me it's a theory that states i should trust my intuitive feeling, that i am good at understanding complex emotional dynamics of groups of people. so maybe i am biased and putting too much faith in this theory. i've questioned it just to make sure i wasn't making a mistake with wishful thinking and every time i have suspended my belief and thought about it logically and observed how it applied to the world around me, the evidence keeps stacking up that this is indeed a valid theory. i don't need to see someone elses paperwork to know that, i can see it in action everywhere i look.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    just curious, is economy a belief according to your criteria?
    No.

    Quote Originally Posted by humblepie View Post
    it's more than just a belief. it does make testable predictions. one prediction it makes is that conflictors will have a negative effect on each other and duals a positive effect. that is just one example of a million other predictions it could make based on the growing amount of knowledge and understanding we are gaining everyday.
    All you need to find is one set of conflictors who get along and one set of duals who do not to falsify the prediction. Since the basis for type has not even been established, testing intertype relations would be a shot in the dark.

    Quote Originally Posted by humblepie View Post
    i've questioned it just to make sure i wasn't making a mistake with wishful thinking and every time i have suspended my belief and thought about it logically and observed how it applied to the world around me, the evidence keeps stacking up that this is indeed a valid theory. i don't need to see someone elses paperwork to know that, i can see it in action everywhere i look.
    I'm not saying Socionics doesn't have any sort of utility, or that it's completely wrong. Indeed, there probably is something to the whole information metabolism idea more than anything else, just don't confuse this shit with science.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    No.

    All you need to find is one set of conflictors who get along and one set of duals who do not to falsify the prediction. Since the basis for type has not even been established, testing intertype relations would be a shot in the dark.

    the way i understand it, it doesn't necessarily predict if conflictors or duals will get along but i think it can predict how they will effect one another over a long period of interaction. outside factors like upbringing and stages of developement may affect how they get along. i haven't come accross anyone so far who has become a better person and found it easy to do so by being in an intimate relationship with a conflictor. maybe i'll be proven wrong but i think it's unlikely at this stage.

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    Skeptic, unto each personality trait there exists an attendant motivation. Strong motivations are naturally prioritized over lesser motivations. Besides this, efficacy when trying to persuade is an issue. We want to persuade others we are right -- if we find we consistently fail to persuade, then we have less motivation to even try. We naturally find ourselves using the function which is most effective and makes us feel good about ourselves. This is another, "nurturing" angle on the prioritization system to go along with the "natural" motivating impulses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    The intertype relations are testable under the right set of experimental conditions. The only obstacle is finding some way to measure the level of compatibility between two persons. The right set of survey questions should do the trick, though.

    Problem is, the Russians could easily have come up with this idea themselves and have probably engaged in such testing. The fact that after about 30 years there is still no interest in the theory among the scientific establishment in the west speaks volumes about how successful they must have been at it.
    I can look at that two ways. The task is very difficult as relationships are hard to simulate and monitor (as is interpreting their feelings) OR the relationships are so difficult to understand because there is a unique one for every unique individual, meaning conflict and happy relationships can be achieved through the same two individuals over a long time.

    Truly we will not be any closer to the answer unless we knew the methods and results of the Russians, if they have any...
    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    I've debated this so much, I won't do it again. So I just say, everyone who calls socionics a belief (in the usual sense) should inform him/her self on the subject called 'the philosophy of science'.
    Referring anyone who disagrees to something extremely complicated and general like 'the philosophy of science' will give little insight into your argument and will do nothing other than make it impossible to disagree with you.
    Quote Originally Posted by humblepie View Post
    the way i understand it, it doesn't necessarily predict if conflictors or duals will get along but i think it can predict how they will effect one another over a long period of interaction. outside factors like upbringing and stages of developement may affect how they get along. i haven't come accross anyone so far who has become a better person and found it easy to do so by being in an intimate relationship with a conflictor. maybe i'll be proven wrong but i think it's unlikely at this stage.
    Factors affecting relationships; Upbringing, stage of development, class/income, color, creed, culture ... Don't these things trump socionics? If so, socionics will not be accurate until the relationships is perfectly equal (impossible).
    Quote Originally Posted by Divided View Post
    ...
    Well on one hand you say every individual is unique and has a unique set of behaviors but on the other you say a theory which assigns a one-in-16 type to every individual can be applied thoughtfully.

    And if you're saying only that socionics is only useful when applied thoughtfully, I say that it can never be consistent because I can justify all my relationships with any type of intertype relationship yet still have thoughtful reasons for it.
    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    Skeptic, unto each personality trait there exists an attendant motivation. Strong motivations are naturally prioritized over lesser motivations. Besides this, efficacy when trying to persuade is an issue. We want to persuade others we are right -- if we find we consistently fail to persuade, then we have less motivation to even try. We naturally find ourselves using the function which is most effective and makes us feel good about ourselves. This is another, "nurturing" angle on the prioritization system to go along with the "natural" motivating impulses.
    Is there really a complementary motivation for each personality trait? I see many traits which individuals may not like to have and have no motivation to keep, like laziness, temper, varying levels of obnoxious behavior, etc. which all seem to be a result of their circumstances and insecurities rather than a result of a motivating force.

    And if you're saying these insecurities arise due to emphasis being placed on a function we are good at as opposed to the things we are bad at, you've not proved the existence of a function in the first place. What is to say that we don't just make up our own methods (or functions if you will) of dealing with hardship as opposed to calling upon an already worked out function lodged in our brain?

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    Quote Originally Posted by humblepie View Post
    the way i understand it, it doesn't necessarily predict if conflictors or duals will get along but i think it can predict how they will effect one another over a long period of interaction. outside factors like upbringing and stages of developement may affect how they get along. i haven't come accross anyone so far who has become a better person and found it easy to do so by being in an intimate relationship with a conflictor. maybe i'll be proven wrong but i think it's unlikely at this stage.
    My main problem with your suggestion is that say we find a set of conflictors who manage a friendly long-term relationship (not necessarily a couple, mind you). What does this suggest about Socionics? Is it a problem with their typing; are they, perhaps, not conflictors after all? Is it a problem with the interpersonal relations aspect of the theory? Must conflictors necessarily become at odds with each other?

    In the end, this situation would devolve into an argument over how to objectify the typing process, and how to verify the predictions of intertype relations. I acknowledge that a fully developed Socionics theory will probably have some element of imperfection -- indeed, no theory perfectly describes reality -- but there is so much room for debate that no one can declare Socionics a cohesive theory of personality typology and interpersonal relationships. The dissent that festers within this very community is evidence of that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    The dissent that festers within this very community is evidence of that.
    because most of them don't know shit. If you would let them talk about something like relativity they would also be arguing, does that declare relativity to be a non-theory? no.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    because most of them don't know shit. If you would let them talk about something like relativity they would also be arguing, does that declare relativity to be a non-theory? no.
    that would be me, hahaha.

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    I don't wanna read into this discussion. But: my dad is my conflictor. As I see it, we make good examples of what our types are or should be under such circumstances. Lying unloving workaholic who never stays at home, lol, and withdrawn introvert spending his days in front of computer doing his artistic or stereotypically IEI thing on the net.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skeptic View Post
    Well on one hand you say every individual is unique and has a unique set of behaviors but on the other you say a theory which assigns a one-in-16 type to every individual can be applied thoughtfully.

    And if you're saying only that socionics is only useful when applied thoughtfully, I say that it can never be consistent because I can justify all my relationships with any type of intertype relationship yet still have thoughtful reasons for it.
    That's sort of what I'm saying. Let me try again, but be less vague. More specifically I'm trying to explain that any kind of psychology falls prey to being argued as not being a science because the problem of being sentient means we have a certain capacity to change or interpret things in better ways than previously thought. Our perception of existence is subjective. To be subjective is to be alive. To have two entities form an idea of each other will then create a complex subjective suggestion between the two beings.

    So any feeling or idea you get or interpret about a person implies a prediction or definition you have created in response to that person that you, and through influence of another, can change or redefine anyway you want. Then is it right, is it wrong? It's neither. But then is Socionics right or wrong? It's also neither. It's just another cognitive tool to give a person another way of seeing human interaction.

    But then the difference between something like studying the physics of the external world is that you are dealing with quantities that seemingly remain constant. So people are much more able to call that science when the result of various experiments have repeatedly shown them the same results and discount anything else as mambo-jumbo. But to do such a thing is to discount their own amazing sentience, or at least to be ignorant of its appreciation, because they are not constant in nature.

    Then the models attempt to give us some kind of explanation for something that truly can't be fully explained because by our nature we are incapable of fully explaining ourselves individually. It's a paradox! But we can then constantly partially explain things. And I then think this is much better than no explanation, even if it doesn't always predict the same result.
    Last edited by DividedsGhost; 10-20-2010 at 08:18 PM.

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    Then the models attempt to give us some kind of explanation for something that truly can't be fully explained because by our nature we are incapable of fully explaining ourselves individually.
    Divided always says this stuff. It's just his opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    because most of them don't know shit.
    Agreed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    If you would let them talk about something like relativity they would also be arguing, does that declare relativity to be a non-theory? no.
    My point was that Socionics isn't based on anything substantial. It deals in abstractions and ideas, nothing more tangible than our own subjective experiences and social expectations.

    It doesn't make it wrong, or completely useless, it's just not science.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    Agreed.

    My point was that Socionics isn't based on anything substantial. It deals in abstractions and ideas, nothing more tangible than our own subjective experiences and social expectations.

    It doesn't make it wrong, or completely useless, it's just not science.
    what are personality disorders according to you, or maybe in general, psychology, that isn't substantial, but it still is science.

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    A fact.

    Your brain works in a natural way that you can't change. you can only become more like yourself (peace , integration) or more dislike yourself (stress) -- and the other types of people you interact with either separate you from yourself, or they mend you together. Basically.

    You can totally remove your ego and become one with humankind, but doing so will take types of people that essentially have a very similar ego as you to do so. (like other identicals) That's what people mean when they say ego is both the problem and the solution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    what are personality disorders according to you, or maybe in general, psychology, that isn't substantial, but it still is science.
    The existence of personality disorders isn't substantial? Really?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Capitalist Pig View Post
    The existence of personality disorders isn't substantial? Really?
    you're avoiding my question.

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    Not sure why I'm chiming in, since this isn't my domain.

    Socionics belongs to the social sciences. Its closest relative in the West is the MBTI. And the MBTI is past its heyday, so it's not surprising to me that Socionics doesn't captivate U.S. social scientists.

    Anyway, the measures that MBTI holds itself to as a testing instrument are reliability and validity. The Meyers & Briggs Foundation explains that standard here: My MBTI Personality Type - MBTI Basics - The Reliability and Validity of the MBTI Instrument

    And studies have been done to show statistically how couples of various MBTI types rate their own marital satisfaction.

    Studies of this kind could be done with Socionics, but it will be more difficult, since Socionics doesn't consider a written test to be an ultimate authority in measuring or determining type. In the West, I expect that's a serious challenge to it being taken seriously. And even if that's not the case, the amount of work required to determine type is so much greater via personal interviews than by written tests, it would be very costly and time-consuming to create large samples needed for accurate statistical analysis.

    So maybe Socionics seems a little doomed to remain obscure and unscientific. I don't think it's merely a belief, though.

    For example, a set of spiritual teachings called Anthroposophy offers various typologies, and one of these is roughly the same as the four classical temperaments. You could easily draw up written tests to measure temperament and determine the model's validity and reliability. But you can't measure the part that Anthroposophy asks you to believe, which is that the human being is constituted of four bodies (physical, etheric, astral, and ego), and whichever body preponderates determines the expression of temperament. There's no science for measuring these esoteric things.

    So what part of Socionics am I supposed to accept on faith? That human beings exhibit personality differences, and that these differences fall into certain patterns? That although personalities might vary endlessly in certain details, as no two people are exactly alike, the amount of variation on some level is limited enough to divide humans into 16 types? Things like that? But I don't have to believe these things to be interested in Socionics. I only have to be willing to suspend my disbelief.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    Divided always says this stuff. It's just his opinion.
    Precisely. Care to share yours then? Or are we to assume you're the one with the complete undebatable truth and facts? I challenge you not to dodge the questions and answer them directly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarno View Post
    because most of them don't know shit. If you would let them talk about something like relativity they would also be arguing, does that declare relativity to be a non-theory? no.
    That comparison is just impossible, especially because relativity theory has a clear and incontrovertible set of guidelines one must follow in order to practice it (identification of planes, reference frames, velocities, so on) where as socionics has no clear procedure and there exists no consensus on even its most basic concepts.

    Personality disorders are a different story, but they are items that are usually diagnosed, requiring an 'expert's' opinion, much in the same way a socionic type can be diagnosed by an 'expert'. I'm sure it's commonly known that certain disorders are perhaps... over diagnosed and others we openly admit to knowing very little about, meaning there is no clear scientific consensus on many of them in the first place (for others there is indeed a physical difference in the development in the individual, but then it is no longer a theoretical personality disorder that exists only in one's head but rather a natural fact).
    Quote Originally Posted by Divided View Post
    ...
    While it's true we are destined to subjectively define our existence, it is not true that the physical world cannot be quantified on a personality level and cannot be called upon to aid in our understanding of ourselves. For example, we can identify parts of our physical brain that control and regulate different patterns of thought, like one region regulating certain emotions. We can further identify the circumstances in which increased activity is had in these parts of the brain (ex. I'm listening to music, certain emotions get stimulated). That means we really do have a phsyical measuring stick for subjective responses to situations, and this is just the tip of the iceberg; I have a feeling that over the next few decades increased study on the brain and on genetics will reveal far more about ourselves than we could imagine.

    That is to say that the mind's subjective responses to situations can be objectively gauged through phsyical study of the brain (theoretically and based on our current understanding; this isn't verified with our future understanding of the situation). My question to socionics is how physically accurate does it claim to be and how far do we believe it to be? Most importantly, is our belief justified?

    ...

    Unless you believe the mind leads its own mystical, esoteric existence to which physical laws don't apply, to which I and the scientific community centered around brain study would probably disagree.
    Quote Originally Posted by Golden View Post
    ...
    What patterns are we talking about? The patterns that emerge in people that Jung originally observed through study of multiple time periods and cultures? The patterns Augusta settled on through Jung based on her own individual study (whatever that implies)? Or the patterns you see every day in people around you (meaning present, one culture)? Don't you think that if you were to construct a personality theory based on the people around you, the 'patterns' you observe are going to be fairly different from the patterns someone in another culture identified due to differences in 'upbringing, stage of development, class/income, color, creed, and culture'? Don't you think that both of your structures would differ from a structure that takes both of your perspectives into account?

    That means you are taking the patterns socionics proposes for granted and on faith because you don't have the tools Jung had when he conducted his studies and structured his ideas. The only tools you have are what you see around you, and when you practice socionics (and not your personally constructed personality theory), you're saying 'I trust this man's thorough investigation of mankind so much so that I would take his structure that applies to all human beings over my own structure *or* I have studied his structure so much and convinced myself of its accuracy that his structure and mine are one and the same'.

    Is this observation of patterns faith based or knowledge based? I would say 'faith' because you are putting faith in Jung that he was smart enough to define a set of principles that apply even to your personal section of people in the world.
    Quote Originally Posted by BulletsAndDoves View Post
    ...
    I don't think I understand.
    Last edited by Skeptic; 10-21-2010 at 10:11 PM.

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    Socionics is something that's naturally intertwined in reality is what I'm getting at. It's one of those things where it always existed and always will exist, there's nothing 'to do with it', it just describes what is already going on. The reason you're 'skeptical' about it, is because there is no real practical application or business commerce use for socionics, other than in the self-help area.
    Last edited by bnd; 10-21-2010 at 11:03 PM.

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