# Thread: Ordering of the Functions

1. ## Ordering of the Functions

Hello, Socionics Board. I've discovered Socionics.
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The system looks very interesting, but I'm currently overwhelmed by all the terminology, which leads me to the conclusion I should focus on the fundamentals first. Assuming there are eight 'functions', or 'facets of reality', or whatever, why is it that they can only be arranged in 16 ways? Why not 8! (eight factorial - 40320) ways - is it merely for convenience? Basically, why does the second function necessarily contradict the first function in both rationality and extroversion? Why do the seventh and eight functions necessarily mirror the first and second functions respectively? It makes for a very elegant 'Model A', but...why?

2. Wellcome first of all!!!

3. Hey Stormy

INTj/ISTj subtype, I guess

4. Thanks, Dioklecian; it's nice to be greeted with a tank.
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Hey, FDG. I've been here longer than you. You joined on my birthday.

Just sayin'.
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5. Hi Stormy . Don't worry, I've posed these questions to with some explanations, but the majority appears to be theoretical rather than emprically proven.

I formulated my own hypothesis at this thread and I hope it answers your question or at least aid you in creating your own theory or understanding of the ordering of the functions.

http://the16types.info/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4011

6. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
Hello, Socionics Board. I've discovered Socionics.
-

The system looks very interesting, but I'm currently overwhelmed by all the terminology, which leads me to the conclusion I should focus on the fundamentals first. Assuming there are eight 'functions', or 'facets of reality', or whatever, why is it that they can only be arranged in 16 ways? Why not 8! (eight factorial - 40320) ways - is it merely for convenience? Basically, why does the second function necessarily contradict the first function in both rationality and extroversion? Why do the seventh and eight functions necessarily mirror the first and second functions respectively? It makes for a very elegant 'Model A', but...why?
IMO, Model A does not accurately reflect reality (though it's nice). Some people have had different subtypes theories to explain this. It may have something to do with nurturing (for example, an Intuitive type raised with Sensors will probably have a more focused sensing side than others of his/her type). Other people have suggested that it has to do with varying functions of the brain (quite possible).

Either way, Model A (or any model) is an ubber-idealisitc view of reality, and I think it only works in extreme or "pure"-type cases ("ideal cases"), which is ok if you only accept it like that. Think for example in Chemistry how gas laws only "ideally" work in high tempurature/low pressure conditions, because if it weren't like that the theory becomes invalid. Just like socionics (most people don't "perfectly" fit into the Model A; it is only there as a guide).

7. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Rocky
Originally Posted by Stormy
Hello, Socionics Board. I've discovered Socionics.
-

The system looks very interesting, but I'm currently overwhelmed by all the terminology, which leads me to the conclusion I should focus on the fundamentals first. Assuming there are eight 'functions', or 'facets of reality', or whatever, why is it that they can only be arranged in 16 ways? Why not 8! (eight factorial - 40320) ways - is it merely for convenience? Basically, why does the second function necessarily contradict the first function in both rationality and extroversion? Why do the seventh and eight functions necessarily mirror the first and second functions respectively? It makes for a very elegant 'Model A', but...why?
IMO, Model A does not accurately reflect reality (though it's nice). Some people have had different subtypes theories to explain this. It may have something to do with nurturing (for example, an Intuitive type raised with Sensors will probably have a more focused sensing side than others of his/her type). Other people have suggested that it has to do with varying functions of the brain (quite possible).

Either way, Model A (or any model) is an ubber-idealisitc view of reality, and I think it only works in extreme or "pure"-type cases ("ideal cases"), which is ok if you only accept it like that. Think for example in Chemistry how gas laws only "ideally" work in high tempurature/low pressure conditions, because if it weren't like that the theory becomes invalid. Just like socionics (most people don't "perfectly" fit into the Model A; it is only there as a guide).
Simply put, in my opinion Model A is trash. It tries to bring a simplistic and over-structured organization to the functions without actually attributing the order to the strength or usage.

8. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Traveler
Hi Stormy . Don't worry, I've posed these questions to with some explanations, but the majority appears to be theoretical rather than emprically proven.

I formulated my own hypothesis at this thread and I hope it answers your question or at least aid you in creating your own theory or understanding of the ordering of the functions.

http://the16types.info/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4011
Thanks for the link; I've heard about theories to do with left-brained vs. right-brained and stuff. Personally, I don't know what to make of it all - I take it you've studied neuroscience?

Originally Posted by Rocky
IMO, Model A does not accurately reflect reality (though it's nice). Some people have had different subtypes theories to explain this. It may have something to do with nurturing (for example, an Intuitive type raised with Sensors will probably have a more focused sensing side than others of his/her type). Other people have suggested that it has to do with varying functions of the brain (quite possible).

Either way, Model A (or any model) is an ubber-idealisitc view of reality, and I think it only works in extreme or "pure"-type cases ("ideal cases"), which is ok if you only accept it like that. Think for example in Chemistry how gas laws only "ideally" work in high tempurature/low pressure conditions, because if it weren't like that the theory becomes invalid. Just like socionics (most people don't "perfectly" fit into the Model A; it is only there as a guide).
I see - I guess my real complaint then is why are the types typically presented as an arrangement of all eight functions when they only really deal with the two most dominant functions (and even then, there's still the question of why those two functions have to contradict each other to some extent). I guess it's to facilitate 'Intertype Relationships', which sound amusing.

I'm all for abstract models that are pitifully divorced from reality, though.
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9. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
Hello, Socionics Board. I've discovered Socionics.
-

The system looks very interesting, but I'm currently overwhelmed by all the terminology, which leads me to the conclusion I should focus on the fundamentals first. Assuming there are eight 'functions', or 'facets of reality', or whatever, why is it that they can only be arranged in 16 ways?
They can indeed be arranged in 16 ways; however, this would not provide a logically choerent framework. Why? Simply because the function's nomenclature, that is base creative etc describes properties of the functions themselves; those properties would be contradicted if we were to arrange the functions in all the other ways; for example, the creative function of an extraverted rational must always be an introverted perceiving function - why this? Because if an extravert rational judges the world filtering it through his base function, which serves in this case as an input, he needs to mold his perceptions into something useable in order to be able to survive. This is noticeable especially if we were to try a reductio ad absurdum; for example, let's construct a type, called A, whose functions are and . He'll take the informations about the outside world with his base function , and the pass it to the 2nd...but here we have an extraverted perceving function, and the result of passing the infos to would lead to a mental clutter, since notices laws of causality, wheras perceives latent possibilites. If an individual had to base its functioning on those two processes, what could he do?? Nothing, because he wouldn't have any tool that molds his "perceptions" into anything organized and tangible, which is precisely why the creative function is named "creative".

Basically, why does the second function necessarily contradict the first function in both rationality and extroversion?
As explained before - not praticularly throughly, I agree - there is a necessary requirement of survival. If a person had introverted functions coupled, he wouldn't literally be able to access the world outside of himself; vice versa, if a personw had extraverted functions coupled, he wouldn't be able to make sense of what happens in the world outside himself, thereby making his survival impossible, since he would not understand causal relationships and his actions would basically be randomized.

10. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the link; I've heard about theories to do with left-brained vs. right-brained and stuff. Personally, I don't know what to make of it all - I take it you've studied neuroscience?
I have. Basically what people say is that the left brain is primarily the judging one and the right brain is perceiving. However, this is not 100% correct. We know, for example how in some people (generally left-handed people) for whatever reason, stereotypical left-brained traits cross over into the right hempishere (more 50-50 distribution as opposed to being completely seperate like most people want to believe). An example of this is logic (Thinking-judging), which most people would say is a left-brained trait. But it has been seen in some people that logical processing (along with other "left-brained" stuff) does in fact exist in the right. I believe this creates what some would consider "subtypes".

I see - I guess my real complaint then is why are the types typically presented as an arrangement of all eight functions when they only really deal with the two most dominant functions (and even then, there's still the question of why those two functions have to contradict each other to some extent). I guess it's to facilitate 'Intertype Relationships', which sound amusing.
It's based on observation.

11. Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.

12. Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.
I am doubtful about this interpretation; mainly because if you suppose that what you say it's true, it would be impossible to differentiate between a and a , since both would use Thinking in the extraverted arena, and sensation in the introverted arena.

13. Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.
I think SLI uses differently from LSE.

14. Originally Posted by Rocky
Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.
I think SLI uses differently from LSE.
That's what I think, too, but then we would have to add some qualifiers to Stormy's suggestions.

15. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Rocky
Basically what people say is that the left brain is primarily the judging one and the right brain is perceiving. However, this is not 100% correct. We know, for example how in some people (generally left-handed people) for whatever reason, stereotypical left-brained traits cross over into the right hempishere (more 50-50 distribution as opposed to being completely seperate like most people want to believe). An example of this is logic (Thinking-judging), which most people would say is a left-brained trait. But it has been seen in some people that logical processing (along with other "left-brained" stuff) does in fact exist in the right. I believe this creates what some would consider "subtypes".
'Subtypes'? Implying that there is always logic in the left-brain, but sometimes there is an accompanying level of logic in the right-brain.

Originally Posted by Rocky
It's based on observation.
We'll see.
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Originally Posted by FDG
Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.
I am doubtful about this interpretation; mainly because if you suppose that what you say it's true, it would be impossible to differentiate between a and a , since both would use Thinking in the extraverted arena, and sensation in the introverted arena.
would prefer the Extroverted arena (and thus Extroverted Thinking would overall be the dominant function), whereas would prefer the Introverted arena (and thus Introverted Sensation would overall be the dominant function).

16. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
'Subtypes'? Implying that there is always logic in the left-brain, but sometimes there is an accompanying level of logic in the right-brain.
Subtypes are an attempt to explain differences between people of the same type (example; gulenko's theory.

What I'm saying is that it could explain how some people in a "perceiving" type could be more judging and less perceiving than the stereotypical person in their type.

Let's take an SLI for example. And let's also make two assumptions; judging functions are left-hemisphered and perceiving functions are right, and irrational types are inheritally more right-brained, with rational types more left-brained. This would mean that the typical SLI would be right-brain dominant. It would also mean that he could spend most of his time in mode. Good! Then guess what happens when he switches over to left brained mode, hey, he can use ! Brillant. But that is only ideal. Let's take a "less ideal" SLI example. He is also right-brained dominant. BUT, for some reason or another, both judging and perceiving functions developed in his right brain. What is this guy now? Sure we can say he spends a lot of time in mode, but what about those logical processes that are in the right brain now? Maybe it's ? Maybe this perticular SLI relies much more on than the average or "ideal" SLI. Thus, we could call this a subtype.

17. Originally Posted by Stormy
Thanks for the input, FDG; what about the idea that the second function isn't actually the second most used, but is instead the most used in that arena (either Introversion or Extroversion)? That is to say, an (an SLI, right?) in the Introverted arena primarily uses Sensing, and in the Extroverted arena uses Thinking, even though Extroverted Thinking might not be the second most accessed function overall.
The functions order is not numerical. Thus there is no such thing as a first, second, third, etc function.

18. Originally Posted by Rocky
Subtypes are an attempt to explain differences between people of the same type (example; gulenko's theory.

What I'm saying is that it could explain how some people in a "perceiving" type could be more judging and less perceiving than the stereotypical person in their type.

Let's take an SLI for example. And let's also make two assumptions; judging functions are left-hemisphered and perceiving functions are right, and irrational types are inheritally more right-brained, with rational types more left-brained. This would mean that the typical SLI would be right-brain dominant. It would also mean that he could spend most of his time in mode. Good! Then guess what happens when he switches over to left brained mode, hey, he can use ! Brillant. But that is only ideal. Let's take a "less ideal" SLI example. He is also right-brained dominant. BUT, for some reason or another, both judging and perceiving functions developed in his right brain. What is this guy now? Sure we can say he spends a lot of time in mode, but what about those logical processes that are in the right brain now? Maybe it's ? Maybe this perticular SLI relies much more on than the average or "ideal" SLI. Thus, we could call this a subtype.
Yes, I can see how that would work. I read somewhere that there can be a great deal of difference in people of the same Socionics type, although that was apparently because Socionics distinguishes types based on relationships and social roles.

Originally Posted by detail
The functions order is not numerical. Thus there is no such thing as a first, second, third, etc function.
I thought the foundation of the model was that different people priorities and/or prefer different functions...?

19. Originally Posted by Stormy
Originally Posted by detail
The functions order is not numerical. Thus there is no such thing as a first, second, third, etc function.
I thought the foundation of the model was that different people priorities and/or prefer different functions...?
Yes but it has more depth than a basic ordinal numerical system (However you call that) can provide to efficiently describe the meaning of each function depending on it's "place" in the whole system. I meant more that it should never be forgotten that the ordinal classification is more intuitive than anything else but doesn't provide any insight really when you get further in the order.

20. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
Hello, Socionics Board. I've discovered Socionics.
-

The system looks very interesting, but I'm currently overwhelmed by all the terminology, which leads me to the conclusion I should focus on the fundamentals first. Assuming there are eight 'functions', or 'facets of reality', or whatever, why is it that they can only be arranged in 16 ways? Why not 8! (eight factorial - 40320) ways - is it merely for convenience? Basically, why does the second function necessarily contradict the first function in both rationality and extroversion? Why do the seventh and eight functions necessarily mirror the first and second functions respectively? It makes for a very elegant 'Model A', but...why?
There's this old thread that talks about the same issue and where the 16 combinations come from: http://the16types.info/forums/viewto...original+works

Also, on the difference between "functions" and "information elements" (aka "facets of reality"): http://the16types.info/forums/viewto...ents+functions

21. The laws of the model are of an interfunction relations nature and can only be verified by observation. To start with there are two groups of functions: judging and perceiving ones. You can think of them as being of opposite polarities as they are useless alone and automatically group in pairs called Blocks (There is another law to Block composition but it is not needed right now).

As it was said above, a Block must contain a judging and a perceiving function because it represents how information can be collected and processed to give a result, something that can't be done without both. These functions must also be opposed in extraversion and introversion because of the same goal that a Block has. If both were not opposed, they could just not cooperate. FDG covered that up very well btw. So a Block must be composed of two functions opposed in +/- and in Heads/Tails. With 8 functions, it means there will be 4 blocks.

There's another concept that is important to know and it is the area. It's defined by conscious and unconscious and each state affects two blocks. The premise behind this is that if you naturally tend towards a block, then it means you naturally tend towards perceiving and judging in the respective orientations (Extraversion and introversion) of that comfortable block (Which is called Ego block). So doing the opposite is an unconscious process, in that it's like the negative of what you do naturally or the opposite of what is considered as a strenght and as a weakness. It was represented above by ' and Heads/Tails independently.

Now the actual 4 blocks are easily deduceable based on the above. There is one that is called the Ego block which kinda defines the main parts of your personnality (Those affected by socionics). Another one is called the Superego block and is related to the Ego block because they are both conscious, for the reason stated in the premise of the above paragraph. There's another one who represents the dual functions of the Ego block and is the negative of the Superego. As the Superego is consciously seen as a weakness compared to the Ego block, the Superid is unconsciously weak and when with people whose Ego block is your Superid, your mood is lifted because A) Since the Superid block is composed of Ego's dual seeking functions, there's an openness to what the functions strive for and B) It's composed of the negative of your conscious weaknesses. But there's no need to go further in describing the blocks themselves because that information is already available in descriptions. So let's get to the last block of the enumeration, the Id, which is unconscious, dual of Superego, negative of Ego.

With all these limitations of possibilities, as soon as you have a correctly "positionned" function, there are only two possibilities left and as soon as you have a block, there is only one possibility. That's what makes it possible to have only 16 types. Let's take a closer look:

There are 8 relatives functions which are:

+H +T +H' +T' -H -T -H' -T'

The only possible model is:

Ego+H -T)
Superego+T' -H')
Superid+T -H)
Id+H' -T')

So there you have model A. Now you can construct types. Only 16 though.

22. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Rick
There's this old thread that talks about the same issue and where the 16 combinations come from: http://the16types.info/forums/viewto...original+works

Also, on the difference between "functions" and "information elements" (aka "facets of reality"): http://the16types.info/forums/viewto...ents+functions
Thank you very much, Rick! That's really helpful, especially your post explaining the conceptual 'rules' for the types from Aushra - it relates to what you, detail, say about the functions in a type not primarily being 'numerical', operating instead as a coherent whole. As does the distinction between 'information factors' and 'functions', which I thank you for elucidating, although I am sure to distort repeatedly.
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23. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by Stormy
Originally Posted by Traveler
Hi Stormy . Don't worry, I've posed these questions to with some explanations, but the majority appears to be theoretical rather than emprically proven.

I formulated my own hypothesis at this thread and I hope it answers your question or at least aid you in creating your own theory or understanding of the ordering of the functions.

http://the16types.info/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4011
Thanks for the link; I've heard about theories to do with left-brained vs. right-brained and stuff. Personally, I don't know what to make of it all - I take it you've studied neuroscience?
No problem . The theory concerning left and right brain is supposedly deals with the idea that judging functions are left brained and perceiving functions are mainly right brained. Thay may be accurate but that is an oversimplification of the truth and in reality our brain is much more complex and not as structured. The way I see it the process is structured but the results are randomized if that makes sense. As for neuroscience; to be honest I have studied nearly nil in the subject. However I felt that neuroscience is heavily correlated with psychological functions and types and I decided to create a theoretical scenario that could help explain the phenomenon.

24. ## Re: Ordering of the Functions

Originally Posted by FDG
...for example, let's construct a type, called A, whose functions are and . He'll take the informations about the outside world with his base function , and the pass it to the 2nd...but here we have an extraverted perceving function, and the result of passing the infos to would lead to a mental clutter, since notices laws of causality, wheras perceives latent possibilites. If an individual had to base its functioning on those two processes, what could he do?? Nothing, because he wouldn't have any tool that molds his "perceptions" into anything organized and tangible, which is precisely why the creative function is named "creative".
What about accepted types that have as their 2nd (creative) function (i.e. LII and EII) - how do they 'mold their perceptions'?

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