Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Personality Types (2)

Yesterday, I mentioned the holistic circular number system.

So each number that has a recognised quantitative (analytic) meaning in the conventional number system, has equally an unrecognised qualitative (holistic) meaning in a corresponding circular fashion.

This alternative circular system in truth leads to a new holistic understanding of the notion of a number dimension, which in turn paves the way for a radical new interpretation of the true nature of space and time (in both physical and psychological terms).

And just as "4" has a special significance in relation to dimensions from the conventional scientific perspective, equally this this true in holistic terms.

When Marie Louise Von Franz made the remarkable claim that "Jung devoted practically the whole of his life work to demonstrating the vast psychological significance of the number "4", she was referring implicitly to this circular holistic notion of "4".

And we can now briefly reveal in more mathematical terms why this is so important!

Just as in analytic terms the four roots of 1 define the four co-ordinates of the complex number system, which thereby enables the comprehensive treatment of all numbers, likewise this is true in holistic qualitative terms.

Therefore, in this context, we can now use the holistic notion of  "4", which in linear terms is defined by real and imaginary co-ordinates (with respect to the unit circle in the complex plane).

Now once again, my basic model of personality is built directly on this holistic mathematical basis.

So we have the two complementary psychological modes (i.e. the cognitive mode of reason and the affective mode of sense) that are real (conscious) and imaginary (unconscious) with respect to each other.

Thus when the cognitive mode is made conscious (real), then in relative terms, the affective is thereby unconscious (imaginary).

However, in reverse manner, when the affective is now conscious (real) in experience, the cognitive is thereby unconscious (imaginary).

Therefore, both cognitive and affective modes keep switching, through the dynamics of experience, as between conscious (real) and unconscious (imaginary) aspects.

Likewise both modes have external (positive) and internal (negative) expressions.

Now to clarify a little more, I generally refer to the external (objective) cognitive mode as reason (R)!

Then with respect to the more internalised (subjective) expression of this mode, I customarily refer to it as judgement (J).

Likewise, I customarily refer to the external (objective) affective mode as sense (S) and then the more internalised (subjective) expression as feeling (F).

I must admit - though very much in broad agreement with Jung's treatment of personality functions - I have always found his definition of feeling as somewhat confusing (referring to it in rational terms).

However in my own terminology, feeling has clearly an affective - rather than cognitive - meaning.

So in this way, through the switching of polarities as between external and internal (and internal and external) we can thereby identify 4 modes (two cognitive and two affective) which in turn have both external (positive) and negative (internal) directions.

For example, when reason (R) is applied to some external objective - say scientific - issue, we thereby have its positive direction. However associated with this is a corresponding internal interpretation (using mental constructs).

We could validly refer therefore to the former external direction as the extrovert aspect (E) and the latter internal direction as the introvert aspect (I) respectively. 

The fallacy therefore of  belief in the "objective" nature of science, is that it inevitably reduces such subjective (internal) interpretation in a merely objective (external) manner.

However properly understood, objective reality has no strict meaning independent of subjective interpretation! Therefore our understanding of the world properly represents a two-way dialogue of interactive meaning.  

Likewise judgement (J) has both an internal and external (i.e. introvert and extrovert) interpretations.
For example, in attempting to make an appropriate moral judgement with respect to individual behaviour, one's unique subjective experience (of an internal nature) will be critically important. However there is also an inescapable external dimension in the application of objective guidelines.

In fact, here we have a big problem with institutional religion, which attempts in many circumstances to reduce moral behaviour (e.g. in the case of abortion) to rigid conformity with unambiguous objective rules!

However once again properly understood, every moral decision should reflect a two-way dialogue as between external (objective) and internal (subjective) meaning.

Then with the sense mode (S), the external aspect relates to recognition of the object (that induces an affective reaction). The internal aspect then relates more directly to the affective feelings (induced by the object).

Then with the feeling mode (F), the internal aspect relates directly to subjective awareness of one's private feelings, where again the external aspect entails recognition of those events (that trigger such feelings).

So with the 4 modes (each with two directions) we have now defined 8 relatively distinct aspects of personality. However then we must remember that these have all both conscious (real) and unconscious (imaginary) expressions. In the Jungian system, this distinction is referred to as that between S (sense) and N (intuition). However once again, though very much in agreement with the general Jungian thrust, I prefer to use my own holistic mathematical  terminology (to avoid confusion).

However what is clear is that when we allow for both conscious (real) and unconscious (imaginary) expressions with respect to the modes, we can now define 16 relatively distinct aspects of personality.

The Myers-Briggs Personality Types - which have arisen directly from Jungian notions - does indeed define 16 distinct Personality Types.

Each Personality Type is defined by 4 letters.

The first is either E (extrovert) or 1 (introvert). This concurs readily with external (positive) and negative (internal) directions (in my own approach).

The second letter is either S (sense) or N (intuition). This - as we have seen - relates to conscious (real) and unconscious (imaginary) in my approach.

The third letter is either T (thinking) or F (feeling). This concurs directly with cognitive and affective functions R (reason) and F (feeling) in my approach.

The last letter is either P (perception) or J (judgement). This concurs directly with cognitive and affective functions J (judgement) and S (sense) in my approach.

Thus each Personality Type is built around a certain dominance with respect to just one of the 16 possible Types.

Of course in some ways this is very unbalanced as all 16 aspects have an important role to play with respect to experience.

Though I recognise that in certain circumstances e.g. work, a person may indeed exhibit certain tendencies identifiable with one of these Types, I prefer now to see personality as a composite - however unbalanced - of all Types.

What I personally find of great significance is that all 16 Types can be directly related back to the holistic mathematical understanding of "4"!

And remember now we are speaking of a 4-dimensional reality that is structured - not in quantitative but rather - in a qualitative manner!

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