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Discussion in 'The INFJ Typology' started by David Nelson, Mar 23, 2022.

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  1. David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    Had 2 very interesting recent experiences. One was a premonition of what someone was going to ask me a few seconds before they did, and I couldn’t see and didn’t know this person until I turned round.

    The other was a dream last night where I was thinking about a writers work and I had a profound insight which I couldn’t completely define but I do have some grasp of. I’m hoping this comes back but these things are by their nature unpredictable. It was something to do with getting behind someone’s creativity as a way of seeing the magic and thereby surpassing it.

    Both of these speak to the power of Ni imo. I was watching a YT video yesterday which purported to the idea that Ni was not superior to Si in any way. , lol. Oh dear!



    I don’t think Ni doms are necessarily psychic (although it can seem that way at times) but the Ni analysis of data is a slow process which relies on Si (memory) to some degree. This process is clearly unique and powerful, allowing future predictions and greater analysis of the past rather than what Si does (uses past data to predict the present and future, hence no change or new insights).

    Anyone had similar experiences?
     
  2. aeon

    aeon Amoureux des Chatons
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    I don’t think any of the eight defined cognitive functions are superior to, or less than, any of the other ones.

    Cheers,
    Ian
     
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    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    I beg to differ. Maybe another thread needed to discuss this.
     
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  4. Asa

    Asa Resident palindrome
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    @David Nelson, I'm with @aeon on this, there are no "superior" functions. They all need each other to build a complete human. We prefer the Ni experience because Ni is our dominant function. Ni is an uncomfortable experience for some others.

    Yes, I have intuitive moments and precognitive dreams regularly. I have deeply meaningful, symbolic, and breakthrough dreams. They are part of my understanding of self and the world. I have regular but sporadic moments where I "know" something will happen and in some cases that something did happen, though I have no evidence. Sometimes this trait seems to go dormant, but when it is dormant in my regular life, I have precognitive dreams more often.

    Precognitive dreaming is a trait of being neurodivergent, too, BTW.

    One of the downsides to Ni – having ideas and knowing what I know with a low ability to explain how I know or why I think what I do.
     
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  5. Jexocuha

    Jexocuha Community Member

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    Hello @David Nelson, and thank you for your post. I'm glad you have shared some thoughts on Introverted Intuition, because it's a topic that can spur some very interesting ideas for discussion. Would you agree it can be a difficult function to define and describe, precisely due to the "psychic" character of it? And I hope you are open to some open-ended thoughts about this.

    • The "power" of Ni? Is Ni a "power" cognitive function? In my opinion, yes it can be, but it depends on which position in the functional stack it is in. For instance, I ask myself, why is it that ENTJs and ENFJs are always archetypal viewed as leaders, kings/queens, CEOs, mob bosses, etc, and INTJ and INFJ are often not viewed this way automatically? Ni-doms tend take on the archetypal image of "masterminds"(INTJ), "mystics"(INFJ), monks, artists, counselors? The ENTJ and ENFJ have Ni in their auxiliary position, so their personhood, who they are, is not based on Introverted Intuition. It's based on their position in an already established hierarchical system. For ENFJs, their social circles, and where they fit in those social circles, is extremely important to them and their identity. The same goes for ENTJs when they identify themselves within an ordinal structure(aka. corporate, government, military, etc. structures). Thus, ENxJs actively, consciously, wield Ni as a tool or weapon to accomplish their objectives within a defined system, which makes them very likely to make it to the "top" of these system's hierarchies. So when it comes to the question of Ni and "power", this to me, clearly shows Ni as a very powerful function. Why? Because ENxJs understand better than anyone else the power of the imagination. If you can make someone believe in something that they previously didn't believe in before, you can make them do anything. You don't need to make it, solve it, or create it all yourself, in the way an Ni-dom needs to, to prove what is possible, since, you have the backing of the system behind you, if you are an ENFJ or ENTJ. Also, imo, I think Ni by itself is a useless function(Carl Jung himself said of Ni-doms: “From an extraverted and rationalistic standpoint, these types are indeed the most useless of men.”), but it is essential. I think Ni-doms, especially, understand how much the nature of reality is shaped and formed by the individual's ability to perceive it. It is up to Ni-doms to decide what to do with this level of awareness. And as for INFJs, I think it comes from their Fe, which when coupled with Ni allows them a nearly infinite range of flexibility in terms of expression and blending.
    • As for my thoughts on Ni versus Si: I agree with @aeon and @Asa here in that there are no "superior" functions. They are all there in every individual. I highly suggest reading(and I'm giving a bit of a "shout-out") some of @Ren's blog posts on cognitive functions, as well as his excellent book The Ecstatic Soul: A New Look At The INFJ Personality for a good and in-depth look at the metaphysical nature of the INFJ personality, as well as how it differs from the ISFJ, who are a lot like INFJs but have Si in their dominant function. In my opinion, they are simply different and not at all superior/inferior. I really don't like a lot of the online comparisons of personality types with IQ-score, college degree status, and career patterns. It really boxes people in, imo, beyond what is practical, healthy, and true based in real world experience. From my experience, Si-doms, and specifically ISFJs, are very smart, saavy, and "smooth" people. A good popular example of the ISFJ personality would be the U.S. President Barrack Obama. They also have a wide range of expressive capability, in relation to INFJs. They make up about 15% - 20% of the population (which is why, from my pov, most people won't see anything particularly special about an INFJ, nor is there anything strange or different at first glance about an INFJ person, because they very easily blend in with 15 - 20% of the world's ISFJ population). Si is extremely good at paying close attention to details, hard facts, familiar objects, and particular items. ISTJs can be very "powerful". A good example would be someone like Amazon CEO's Jeff Bezos. Te is often perceived as the "power" function. However, no function has "power" alone. Fi is the best counter to Te. A good recent example of this is the current Russia/Ukraine conflict. I think of Russia's direct and forceful bombardment of Ukraine as a very Te-style form of power. You overwhelm your opponent to force them into submission. I think of "Fi" as the necessary element of war, that in order to hold your newly won territory, you must win over "hearts and minds". So even if Russia takes over the capital of Kiev, that will not stop Ukrainians from resisting the Russian power structure. All functions can be "powerful", especially if used optimally. There are because of INFJs rarity, unfortunately, not a whole lot of great modern-world examples of "powerful" INFJs, in the proverbial sense of "power". But there are examples of successful and highly influential INFJs(which are found here on the forum). They are especially influential as "Big idea" people, saints, martyrs, philosophers, model-builders, artists, humanitarians, and authors. They need the acceptance and cooperation of a social or ordinal system in order to do this, imo.
    • Have I had similar experiences[of "premonitions" I assume?]. Yes, all the time. I have seen all kinds of layers of reality, too. I won't divulge in this talk too much though. Nobody cares. It's a lot of the same stuff people make fun of and say, "it's outside of reality". Or, "what have you been smoking"? It's shit. The key is being able to use this perception for the better ends of the world, the people around you, and the systems that hold up our reality as it is in place.
    A final note: On this forum, and this is just a neutral observation, I see a lot of talk about "power"; and I admit, it strikes me because I don't hear people talk about these notions very often or so directly and openly outside of the forum. But it seems very important to a lot of people who come on here for some reason. Not a bad thing - it's just something I notice. I really liked the blog post by @John K Accountability and Power, which gives a thoughtful examination on some of the aspects of seeking leadership and positions of power that don't often get talked about. All in all, all power ultimately belongs to a higher power(s) found in the universe, and I mostly see us mortals, and especially the INFJ, as a "vessel" for communicating the power of truth, faith, and love.
     
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  6. Wyote

    Wyote Istaqa
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    This whole post: Brought to you by the Power of Ni :laughing:

    Agree with everybody as well, generally.
    Whatever is in your preferred first slot is going to feel like a super power to you personally.
    You might be total balls at it compared to somebody else who has it in their second slot though.
    Developing yourself as a whole with your strengths in mind will lead to better optimized performance.
    Even among a type such as INFJs, there are highly individuated skills from person to person based on a lot of different things.
    Ni isn't some sort of magic bullet or mystical gateway, but it is a very useful cognitive preference for some things, just like any other.
     
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  7. John K

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    Hi David. These sound like significant experiences that have made a distinct impression on you. I wouldn't be too sure that these are tied to your Ni - they may be, but I don't think they are limited to people with a preference for Ni, though that might predispose us to them. The big issue with the first one is where the information that you perceived actually came from. If you had observed them subliminally beforehand and your unconscious had deduced the question from that then it's probably Ni at work, but if you hadn't actually seen them beforehand then there is some sort of esp going on and Ni isn't the most prominent aspect of the result. Ni definitely isn't a paranormal function, though of course it can make use of information obtained that way.

    Dreams are an expression of our unconscious minds, and any and all of the functions can be manifest in them, whatever our type. In fact it's very likely that some of our not-preferred functions are represented in a shadowy fashion in our compensatory dream motifs. It's interesting that you saw the magic behind the writer's creativity, which is Ni, but the desire to surpass it goes beyond perception and into judgement - you are comparing yourself with the dream author and see a challenge or a goal in there maybe? If you chew this dream over consciously, you will either suddenly see what's going on, or you will get more dreams that build on it.

    I agree with the others here, that the functions complement each other. I worked on project teams that throve on the variety of function preferences represented within them - the folks with Si preferences are immensely valuable for their intimate inside feel for the detail of what is and what is known to work. And if I'm buying a seven figure amount of IT equipment, give me a really good ESxJ from our purchasing department to front the deal-making any day over an Ni dom - we INFJs avoid the conflict of negotiating, and the INTJs tend to either get too clever with it, or too confrontational.

    I had a sort of precognitive dream a few hours before 9/11 - it was unlike any other dream I've had, before or since. I gather there was a lot of people who had similar experiences. I don't know why this particular disaster was singled out for me this way - maybe that was a world history turning point of a more significant sort than other, similarly awful events.
    Another, more prosaic. A few months before our twin grandkids were born, I was walking into town with my wife. We'd not been in touch with my son and his partner for a couple of weeks, and was just about to say we must get in touch and see how things are going when she said exactly that to me - and as she said it, my phone rang and it was our son with an update. Coincidence? - maybe, but I'm always impressed by triple coincidences.

    I don't think either of these were manifestations of Ni, though my response to them certainly was lol.
     
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  8. aeon

    aeon Amoureux des Chatons
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    I’ve got both, but I think it operates the other way ’round in me...I’m Ne Fi Te Si.

    I’m bigtime feeling this, and I agree. To bring that ineffable, experiential knowledge forth in the world, to make it manifest, allowing it to inform and shape the arc of your actions—this is a kind of tremendous power, yet subtle power.

    People often associate power with coercion because it is the form primarily witnessed. Strength, domination, control, self against other, competition, judgment, punitive actions, acquisition and valuation of scarce resources, defeating another, war...

    The subtle power makes possible vulnerability, suppleness, communion, recognition and respect of one’s own as well as others’ most essential boundaries, liberation, self with other, cooperation, acceptance, redemption and rehabilitation, placing primacy of value on relationships and well-being, celebrating another’s growth and success, peace.

    Cheers,
    Ian
     
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  9. Roses In The Vineyard

    Roses In The Vineyard Well-known member

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    Well when it comes to precognitive dreams I am no stranger having had more than a few come to pass in some form or another over the past decade usually with in weeks to months prior though the details are not always straight forward. One I'll never forget is one I had January of 2011 of a Tsunami hitting what I had thought to be Rio only for the big one to happen on March 11 in Japan that killed over 20,000 people but anyway I've had some real horrors like getting to briefly experience what it is like to watch cities like London or New York getting nuked. In the one about London was just standing there in some random street seeing many of the buildings having had their upper floors blown away while everything that landed in the streets was burning then seeing what remained of a clock tower in the distance and knowing that Paris was also gone. The one about New York was a bit wild that many had already left yet for some reason or another the remaining couldn't leave but yet were still allowed to go to their jobs then watching one going off above one of the boroughs, can't remember as to exactly when I had that one perhaps in 2012 or 2013.
     
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  10. OP
    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    I agree that all functions are needed and have their unique uses. If any person was completely missing the use of a function it would probably cause major problems or be impossible to live with. No Se for example would mean no ability to move. No Fi would mean no internal feelings etc.. Our function stacks are our main abilities, and they usually work together.
    I might also agree that there are no superior functions, in general. Si is data. Ni is data analysis gathered through Se and stored as Si or processed in real time by Ni. N and S cannot exist without each other. But Ni is doing more important work. Si at its best is an encyclopaedia. Ni at its best is understanding and creation of new insights. This is more important than remembering facts. A computer does that far better than humans, yet the human brain is more powerful than the best computer.

    My primary contention, however, is that the INFJ function stack is the one with the greatest importance and potential. I’ve decided to write about this, so won’t go into depth here.
    But I will say this: it might seem intellectually or morally correct to say that all personality types are equal, but in doing that I believe you are offending goodness and virtue. The woke idea that we are all equal is a myth which is really the denial of all that is good and right. There are beautiful people and horrible people, there are talented people and untalented (or lesser talented) people. A denial of discrimination on this basis just lets bad people off the hook and allows the reward of failure, incompetence and chicanery/deceit. I know this is controversial but it shouldn’t be.
    Interestingly aeon mentioned Ayn Rand in another thread and I think my thoughts are in some alignment with her philosophy of Objectivism but without the pro-capitalist stance. Sadly her philosophy is oddly only available through long work(s) of fiction, Atlas Shrugged, but I think it’s basically about rewarding virtue. A meritocracy would be the best system of politics we have ever had. All that is is rewarding virtue, hardly controversial. But to write about such a philosophy seems unconscionable. How strange. Ti truths are often unpalatable sadly.

    INFJs are best placed to change the world. What is more important and powerful than that? They don’t do it alone obviously but they are the essential catalyst. Power can be for good (Jesus) or bad (Hitler), but power is important. We’d be dead without it. A denial of the importance of the INFJ psychology is a denial or lack of understanding of its power and importance. It’s hiding from the truth, and holding back progress. It’s also doing INFJs a major disservice, because much of our suffering is because we have to live in a largely SJ world, one we learn is often toxic to us. Making our mark in this life is best done by making the world a little or a lot better. That’s a tough job, and one we usually don’t get the right credit for. So to level this off with people who take away from others, who hurt others, who compromise the world for their own greed etc etc is offensive to the human spirit and truth. It’s the exact opposite of what was intended.
     
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  11. John K

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    This isn't how I understand Si. An analogy - someone with good Si is like a driver with a satnav built into their minds and an ability to navigate effortlessly, but the emphasis is on their process of navigating not the information content they have access to. Scottie in the original Star Trek series is a good example of an Si user - he isn't just a walking catalogue of how The Enterprise's engineering works, but has such a close affinity with the ship that he can respond immediately with good solutions to many of the most challenging problems involving the capabilities and limitations of its structure and mechanisms. What he cannot do very easily is think out the box and come up with innovative new solutions to new types of problem - and he's quite risk averse in protecting his baby. It makes a lot of sense having a safe pair of hands like that in charge of a complex system that needs to maintain its intricate integrity in order to work properly long term. So it seems to me that Si isn't just a model of the world, but an ability to be effective in complex known and understood situations.
     
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  12. aeon

    aeon Amoureux des Chatons
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    No, Si is something else entirely. From Wikipedia (emphasis mine):

    This description speaks to my experience so beautifully in that it captures the most essential element: I see nothing directly—all that I witness is presented by means of what seems a reflection—well and truly a kind of psychic mirror—and that includes myself.

    If I become aware of a raven, and look up to see it in a tree, do I actually see it? Did I hear its call? No, for all I heard and all I saw was the archetype of a raven, the same raven that sat in that same tree, calling since a time before recorded history, and the raven that will sit and call long after I have died. And the raven is not distinct, because I cannot separate it from the tree and the sound of the wind in its branches.

    And that goes on with all of nature when walking outside, it being fed so by the ever-expansive gathering of Ne. And as each and every is beheld, feeling flows freely. Not emotion, but the feeling born of Fi, where that which is taken in, is known—because there exists in me a framework upon which each and every thing has been placed, according to its nature. And so as I witness the mirror image of this versus that, I am aware of the fluidity and flux and depth of my feeling.

    Given all that, in combination with my ADHD, it’s a wonder sometimes that I don’t just float away.

    Best to You,
    Ian
     
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    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    Thanks for the correction. So Si is an internal, subjective reflection of reality.
    If Se is real world interaction, Si is real world memory, details. Si dominants like to work with facts and data. Most I know have desk type we jobs.

    If Ne is imagination and possibilities, Ni must be internal analysis of data, in search of best possibilities. Ne dominants like to dream openly whereas Ni dominants like to find insights which further understanding, or dream about utopian theories etc. Ne goes out Ni goes in. Ni seeks the one best way forward.
     
  14. Sidis Coruscatis

    Sidis Coruscatis Community Member

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    This sounds like you're overcompensating for years of alienation. I see it happen all the time.

    Be an outsider -> try to "fix" yourself through psychology -> discover cognitive functions -> "I was fine all along, THEY are the idiots for not seeing my gifts!" -> obsessive identification with the functions and ego inflation.

    Declaring something superior is a value statement. Considering you have no direct experience of Si qualia, that valuation is based mostly on your familiarity with the other category. Ni can be grandiose, which gives a false impression of importance when decontextualized from the massive web of causality in which it fits. If superiority is perceived merely as situational aptitude then sure, but it's also redundant. Just because a hammer is better at pounding nails than paper doesn't mean I have to treat it with reverence unless I really like pounding nails. And then we're back again at the root of the problem: injecting merit into something you're personally familiar with.

    Also worth noting that from a Jungian perspective, introverted perception is by definition modified interpretation of reality, therefore nothing to do with data or facts. If anything, Ni is closer to "facts" by extrapolating from photographic details of Se while Ne is memetic in nature. Si is an impressionistic worldview that's substantially more complex than memory or data, especially since it works with Ne. The result can be just as insightful, but from a different vantage point.

    Ni doesn't really care for the future or goals, it only synthesizes universal principles which can then be used as projections to the future. But the power you speak of is always from a metabolism of Je, the gravitation towards a tangible agency in the world.
     
  15. OP
    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    Nice sounding rhetoric, but really just blah blah blah when you consider the fact that the type which has brought the most significant positive changes in the world has been INFJs. This is both in terms of real world change and psychology/philosophy. We are the ‘tip of the spear’ as CSJoseph points out (pun intended lol). We are the rarest for a reason. Si is past focussed, so clings to the past and traditions, that’s inherently inferior imo.
     
  16. Sidis Coruscatis

    Sidis Coruscatis Community Member

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    You've been drinking too much INFJ kool-aid. How convenient that your particular set of functions just happens to be the best at all these incredibly wide-spanning fields!

    Fine, write more about how exceptional you are while living vicariously through deeds of other people. And when you start changing the world, the INTJs will be there to fix your mess as usual. :looninati:

    Still no.
     
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  17. Wyote

    Wyote Istaqa
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    [​IMG]
     
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    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    Each type has a unique, particular set of skills and weaknesses. I just believe INFJs (yes I am one) have the rarest and most important ones in relation to human society in general (and we're nice on a personal basis too). Of course, voicing this opinion won't win me many/any friends, unless they are fellow INFJs who agree with me. But consider this; its not controversial to acknowledge the importance of IQ and knowledge/learning, and those endowed enjoy general respect/envy from others and are usually able to earn more as a result. Physical trade skills are valued less. There is already a real hierarchy of talent and value and status in society. But INFJs are often overlooked and undervalued, yet make significant marks often, and through adversity. They care about people wider than their own family, they care about integrity etc. etc. It's ok being modest when you are already respected or envied by others. In spite of this thread, I am pretty modest in real life, but who is going to praise INFJs and help to give them better appreciation and self-understanding? There are plenty of YT videos doing just that, don't think any other type has the same. Maybe they go too far at times, making us out to be otherwordly-unicorns with hidden genius and eyes that can kill lol. Rarity no doubt attracts attention. Surprised you haven't mentioned Hitler yet lol.

    I think the best way to understand Si is by comparing an ISFJ with an INFJ, or ISTJ with INTJ. Very different. Those 2 sensors are far more bound by tradition than novelty. Those 2 N types want to change things, INFJ the most imo because we have no Si.
     
  19. aeon

    aeon Amoureux des Chatons
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    And therein lies your fundamental error and source of misunderstanding. One cannot understand cognitive functions by attempting to distill their essences from MBTI. Go to the source, and read what Jung actually wrote.

    From that, one can come to appreciate the history of typological theory as per Myers, Beebe, Berens, and Thompson.

    You are putting the cart before the horse, and reaching some conclusions which have no merit.

    Cheers,
    Ian
     
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  20. OP
    David Nelson

    David Nelson Permanent Fixture

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    I’m going by what I’ve seen in numerous YT videos. I do need to read Jung’s work but I don’t think I’m as wrong as you believe. I’ve actually typed several people after only observing them for a short while, so I think that shows I know something about this topic. My observations of people before I knew anything about this subject have informed my understanding as I can see patterns that were apparent but not as clear as now. If I don’t understand cognitive functions, how could I do that?
     
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