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Thread: The Functions: A New Perspective

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    Default The Functions: A New Perspective

    I've thought it over, gradually, for months, and have reached the following conclusion: Boukalov's dimensionality hypothesis does not explain personal reasons for the exaltation of base functions. In particular, ENFJ capacities for persuasion seem to have nothing to do with their strong desire to be liked -- even if they were poor in these, their attempts to influence the emotions around them in such manner as to increase their popularity would continue unabated. (though they would probably feel frustrated or even depressed). The importance they place on Fe, therefore, must have nothing to do with their considerable capability, which is little more than an evolved convenience.

    Thus the "functions" and the "positions" must be two wholly distinct cognitive entities. The position determines the importance placed on the function by the person and their attitude towards it; the function's fitness determines their actual ability to use the function effectively.

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    wants to be a writer. silverchris9's Avatar
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    I agree with this, mostly. The development of capacity to do (represented by "functions") is distinct from the development of interest in (represented by "positions"), although I think they are intertwined. The way I imagine it is, you have a capacity to do something (i.e., "use a function"), which may or may not be native. And as you do that thing, you keep getting positive response from it. Eventually you have a transference of "good feeling" from the reaction to the action itself, in the same way that if I am always happy when I'm at a certain place, I getting happy purely as a result of being in said place. So there's a subconscious expectation in place that performing action x will receive a good reaction, and the individual continues to perform that action even in situations in which there is not a good reaction. So function and position are related insofar as strength in a function will make it more likely for it to fall into a higher position, but there is no intrinsic or necessary relationship between the two.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

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    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    I agree with this, mostly. The development of capacity to do (represented by "functions") is distinct from the development of interest in (represented by "positions"), although I think they are intertwined. The way I imagine it is, you have a capacity to do something (i.e., "use a function"), which may or may not be native. And as you do that thing, you keep getting positive response from it. Eventually you have a transference of "good feeling" from the reaction to the action itself, in the same way that if I am always happy when I'm at a certain place, I getting happy purely as a result of being in said place. So there's a subconscious expectation in place that performing action x will receive a good reaction, and the individual continues to perform that action even in situations in which there is not a good reaction. So function and position are related insofar as strength in a function will make it more likely for it to fall into a higher position, but there is no intrinsic or necessary relationship between the two.
    Well it looks like you took it on from the EM perspective there, not the IM perspective. But I agree, interest and ability do not necessarily coincide.

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    ILE - ENTp 1981slater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    I've thought it over, gradually, for months, and have reached the following conclusion: Boukalov's dimensionality hypothesis does not explain personal reasons for the exaltation of base functions. In particular, ENFJ capacities for persuasion seem to have nothing to do with their strong desire to be liked -- even if they were poor in these, their attempts to influence the emotions around them in such manner as to increase their popularity would continue unabated. (though they would probably feel frustrated or even depressed). The importance they place on Fe, therefore, must have nothing to do with their considerable capability, which is little more than an evolved convenience.

    Thus the "functions" and the "positions" must be two wholly distinct cognitive entities. The position determines the importance placed on the function by the person and their attitude towards it; the function's fitness determines their actual ability to use the function effectively.
    I see your point. Lets assess the "strength" of a function on a particular individual. For instance, think of an ILE with low IQ. Since he's not supposed to become a brilliant scientist, he'll probably end up being 1) not successful 2) disliked by gammas. On the other hand, think of an ILE who has lots of friends and has a good grasp of Fi. He will not disturb others all the time, as most ILEs do.

    Besides, I have seen super intelligent ESIs and SEIs in typical alpha NT environments: their high IQs may reflect strong Ti or whatever.

    What do you think? ?

    Another idea: regardless of the particular type, some people use one ot two functions (mostly ego!), whereas others use all functions. The former group are usually regarded as narrow minded geeks, the latter, open-minded/healthy/adult/smart/whatever.
    Last edited by 1981slater; 12-12-2010 at 07:13 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1981slater View Post
    I see your point. Lets assess the "strength" of a function on a particular individual. For instance, think of an ILE with low IQ. Since he's not supposed to become a brilliant scientist, he'll probably end up being 1) not successful 2) disliked by gammas. On the other hand, think of an ILE who has lots of friends and has a good grasp of Fi. He will not disturb others all the time, as most ILEs do.
    Yes, I've noticed this, too.

    Besides, I have seen super intelligent ESIs and SEIs in typical alpha NT environments: their high IQs may reflect strong Ti or whatever.

    What do you think? ?
    I think the phenomenon of types being in other types' environments can be attributed to having the EM type correspondent to the type of the environment. For example, LSEs will often have lots of LSE EM helpers on hand to assist in the running of the organization, to make sure everyone is doing what's expected of them in various departments. (particularly if that department concerns matters related to their own IM types).

    The IM type leads its EM identicals.
    Last edited by tcaudilllg; 12-12-2010 at 07:26 PM.

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    Ti centric krieger's Avatar
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    If you're starting to get fed up with dimensionality theory (like I have always been), you may want to give my views a try. I never think of functions as existing in graduations of strength. I think Accepting/Creating (aka Base/Creative) refers respectively to Divergence and Convergence from observation. The first puts a focus on the observed and freely ranges across world-states that can bring these observations about, whereas the latter puts the focus on a single world-state that can bring multiple previous observations about and thus lends a common explanation to these.

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    I'm not such a fan of function 'strength', it's not so much what you've got, but what you do with it that counts.

    It's kindov like a guy with a small penis, he just has to do other things with it, and the actual result can be better than someone with a biggie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Words View Post
    I'm not such a fan of function 'strength', it's not so much what you've got, but what you do with it that counts.

    It's kindov like a guy with a small penis, he just has to do other things with it, and the actual result can be better than someone with a biggie.
    Hitler would probably agree.

    Although Beethoven might, too.

    General principle though: whenever you give your weak functions a workout, you're going to piss people off.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    Hitler would probably agree.

    Although Beethoven might, too.

    General principle though: whenever you give your weak functions a workout, you're going to piss people off.
    You can also piss people off with your strong functions? Like a muscle man using their muscles to bully - bad or to protect people - good.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Words View Post
    You can also piss people off with your strong functions? Like a muscle man using their muscles to bully - bad or to protect people - good.
    Well of course you can use a strong function with a weak one.

    Like I, for example, just used my Ti to pressure you into not using your weak functions confidently.

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    If you're starting to get fed up with dimensionality theory (like I have always been), you may want to give my views a try. I never think of functions as existing in graduations of strength. I think Accepting/Creating (aka Base/Creative) refers respectively to Divergence and Convergence from observation. The first puts a focus on the observed and freely ranges across world-states that can bring these observations about, whereas the latter puts the focus on a single world-state that can bring multiple previous observations about and thus lends a common explanation to these.
    Dimensionality offers one thing that the other models don't, and that is the globality hypothesis. From what I understand, the proper way to interpret globality is as a web of aspects all of the same element. In this sense, a snapshot of a person's mind when using their base function would resemble a concept web composed of only information of that element.

    It seems like globality enables that the Ti function (object processor) be used in an auxiliary capacity to validate observations. For example, say an IEE observes that a person probably isn't going to go to the store today. They may cite a lack of motivation as the rationale for their not going. They would assert that only specific motivations, like desire for a food that is not available at home, can drive a person to go to the store. The motivation is a condition that must be satisfied for the potential act of going to the store to be realized.

    Now any type could argue that with their Ne and Fi together. But IEE wants to be sure, so they will then consider how other people could possibly act as motivators. For example, maybe a guest comes by to eat at lunch or thereabouts, and they eat up the first person's desired foods. Now the situation has changed and the first person is motivated to go to the store. So, IEE needs to be sure that no guests will arrive. They can recall all the people who know the person (this is where extroversion is a big help), and deliberate over those persons' individual motives and also their ability to get to the house, perhaps in great detail.

    This in the producing modality -- the accepting modality would probably look at all those people and ask itself how it could possibly motivate them to pay a visit to the woman's house and eat her food. Or it might invite itself over to eat the food and compel the woman to go to the store. There is also the matter of whether among the individuals in question there even is a person who wants to eat said foods. IEE would disqualify individuals from the contact pool based on this knowledge alone, if they had it.

    By this time, an LSI would be completely exhausted by all these considerations. They would not want to give them a lot of thought and might well be surprised to see the person in question at the store because they had never suspected that the person's motivation level for going to the store might have changed.

    An SLE would acknowledge the possibility of seeing X person at the store, but they wouldn't explore it in any great depth. They would leave the possibility open, using factors of cultural expectation to infer the probability that the event would occur. (this is why 2D functions are said to be "normative") They would acknowledge the people who the woman knows and the probability of their coming, but wouldn't really try to figure out, probably, which people might come and which people might not. And if they did try, they would find themselves severely lacking in information (unless they had some kind of table, obviously). Assuming they did lack for information, they would probably rely on various low dimensionality characteristics of various functions (prejudices, biases, rules of thumb, beliefs based on testimony from trusted experts) to try to ad hoc a formula by which to deduce all those unknowns based on some core philosophical premise. If you've heard of Gaussian interpolation, it's something like that: starting with something rough, then bullshitting it into shape.

    So:
    * 1D Ne considers just one object's characteristics when trying to deduce the likelihood that potential will be exercised.
    * 2D Ne considers many objects, but avoids focus on their characteristics and the specifics of their potential interactions.
    * 4D Ne considers many objects and as many possible interactions as time will allow.
    * 3D Ne would consider the many objects and their characteristics, but not many of their interactions.
    Last edited by tcaudilllg; 12-13-2010 at 02:11 PM.

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    Ti centric krieger's Avatar
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    The thing you're missing is that "4D function" (aka Accepting + Strong) means something completely different when you're talking about a Static function than it does when you're talking about a Dynamic function. This obliviousness of yours of the importance of the Static/Dynamic dichotomy is what limits me from finding common ground with any of your ideas.

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    The thing you're missing is that "4D function" (aka Accepting + Strong) means something completely different when you're talking about a Static function than it does when you're talking about a Dynamic function. This obliviousness of yours of the importance of the Static/Dynamic dichotomy is what limits me from finding common ground with any of your ideas.
    I disagree, but you do deserve a thorough explanation as to why. I'll work up a description of a dynamic function then to illustrate.

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    I offer two examples of dynamic functions, Ni and Fe. Particularly, I'll deal with the beta sides of these.

    It's been known for some time that beta is the warrior quadra. SLE starts the fight, LSI stops it (or represses it). If beta STs do the fighting, then beta NFs draw the lines in the sand and delineate the sides. IEI molds sentiment into allegiance, while EIE drives sentiment . Consider Hitler's role as the figurehead of Nazi Germany: his entire program consisted of stirring passionate affections and hatreds towards specific groups. Who stood for the existence of these groups moreso than IEIs?

    IEI first takes in the alpha SF atmosphere, their sense of self, defined primarily by their personal values and their reactions to others' expressed intentions. Against that which ill abides this sense of self they harbor a sense of dislike, which in turn evolves into specific passions towards certain people and things. Based on these passions, a line in the sand is drawn: you either share these passions, or you don't. Black and white thinking. To the extent that a person demurs to the middle, IEI sets about trying to move them into their column. Their tool to this end is shift of sentiment, which they see as being moldable by any one of the sixteen elements. (the EM type of the individual sets the preference in this regard). Of course, anyone can persuade given appropriate conditions because everyone has beta NF functions at their disposal. Where IEI surpasses others, however, is their ability to create an environment of persuasion through peerless emotional calculus.

    In IEI's view, the world is a web of being -- self-identity, sentiments, passions, and relationships. Each individual in their web has all four of these, some of which seem malleable to IEI and others not so malleable. Self-identity is the core in their view, arising from Si which is untouched, untenable, and so is immaculate. Self-identity is the font from which emotions arise: conflicts of identity -- disagreements -- give rise to passions. Every person has a set of buttons, the configurations varying widely, which when pressed yield predictable emotional responses. Each of the buttons correspond to attitudes, which can be uncovered through a process of active listening. IEI takes great care to understand both what people are feeling and what attitudinal characteristics cause them to feel that way. The attitudinal characteristics are what IEI considers the "real" line in the sand, the substance behind the line. Based on those, the IEI determines whether the individual is an adversary, a comrade, or merely ambivalent. Adversaries are people who are diametrically opposed to the IEI's values set, or very much opposed. Comrades are people who are very aligned with the set, and ambivalents are people who may or may not see the importance of either the IEI's values or their adversary's. IEIs see persons who are not aligned with them as representing work that they must undertake. IEIs do not like work, and so are like to concentrate on moving persons whom are values-closest to themselves first, then trying to move others depending on their distance. IEIs call the people closest to them -- the people whom can be persuaded with little effort -- their "base", to be used as a foundation of support for the much more difficult task of persuading people whom are not "base" candidates due to the effort required to "get through" to them. This process of indoctrination is seen by the IEI as the best possible use of their time, a practice to be given as much time and effort as possible. When entering a new social atmosphere, IEIs will take time "getting to know" people, then once they have a sense of who the people around them are emotionally, will set about making projects of them one after another, based on perceived psychological distance. This, to IEI, is the real face of battle, the "recruitment" of individuals into their personal army. They dual with SLE in that they form the backbone of the SLE's operation, the foundation from which SLE draws its forces. So long as IEI is at SLE's side, SLE can replenish their numbers and, possibly, stay even with the enemy. Victory is also dependent on IEI, in that only IEI can, through painstaking work and toil, manage to bring over the ambivalents who turn the tide of battle. Keeping ambivalents in line requires a lot of diligence and sharp thinking, because other IEIs are always trying to persuade people into their own columns, either to the advantage of the IEI or their disadvantage. While anyone can try to persuade another, only IEI is keeping track of all the players in the war for human souls. Often, IEIs will take hold of the environment itself and change it in some way as to make their opponents' arguments seem moot and their own arguments the superior. Such tactics are very important for persuading ambivalents, who may not feel they have a stake in the IEI's struggles otherwise.

    EIE takes the reverse stance. Where IEI looks at no one's history but their own, EIE gives due respect for others' past experiences and tries to get on people's good sides. They may do this by shifting alliances as required, maneuvering themselves into a position of maximum likability. This all in the name of the character argument of successfully shifting sentiments: people hate to disagree with the people they like. EIE studies the behavior of people in general, always trying to figure where individuals -- even entire groups -- are running afoul of majority opinion. To not be in touch with popular opinion is to not have reliable public strength, is to be weak. EIE makes no assumptions as to how people feel, or where their allegiances lie -- they understand that a single, momentous event, whether public or private in scope, can radically transform the balance of powers. Where IEI aligns others, EIEs align themselves. Faced with trying to feel good about themselves, they orchestrate events in such manner as to justify their taking of positions they prefer, and to pressure others into joining them.


    Something unexpected in thinking these systems through: in either case, Se seems to be the priority more than Ti. IEI wants people allied to their cause (out of a sense of vulnerability), while EIE wants to feel strong.
    Last edited by tcaudilllg; 12-15-2010 at 10:09 PM.

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