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Jungian Type Recognition and Relationships
Countless misperceptions and misunderstandings mar our relationship with other people, and Jung's psychological types can,be a superb tool with which to clear them away. Meet Jung's psychological types and develop your skill in type recognition. Then learn to apply this knowledge in community, in marriage and family life, on the job, or in spiritual direction.
This video is the first day of a 2-day conference. The second
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Jim: The point I am going to try to make all day is simply that types are real, that there are very important normal and natural human differences, and it is a failure to take into account these differences which can cause many, many difficulties in human relationships. We are really talking about a skill that is not something we can learn from a book, no matter how well the book is written. even if we took Jungs own Psychological Types and study that, we couldnt learn his typology simply by that because we havent yet learned to see. And as Tyra was saying, there are many areas of our life we have to learn by experience, and this happens to be one of them. So we are going to try to open the door so that you can go through if youd like and then begin to accrue the kind of experience to see typologically.
I would sort of like to give you an idea of how we both got into Jungian psychology. It is in a little backwards way, but I think it illustrates how Jungian psychology is supposed to illuminate real personal experience. Just about the time before I started dating Tyra I had had a sort of vague interest in human differences because I would do things like read the story of Martha and Mary in the Gospel, and I would say, yes, some people are more like Mary, and others are more like Martha. I would see different people, and would say, they are certainly different, but I dont know how to deal with that, I dont know how to really focus on why they are different. So I had an interest in this, and one day I was in the library at Fordham University, browsing around the shelves, and there was Jungs Psychological Types, and I took it home and started reading it, and started reading other things of Jung, and said there were a few things, just a few because I was such a beginner, that would jump out at me and I would say that would explain some experience I had. It was one of those "aha" moments. That explains what went on. I had had some relationships that seemed to just kind of fall apart, and I couldnt understand why they would fall apart. I was enthusiastic, and when I was about to start dating Tyra I said to myself, "For once in my life I will try to be smart, and so what I will do is that I will not just say lets go to the movies, but I will take my newly found Jungian knowledge and I will ask her out, but then I will explain something from Jungs psychology so we could start off our relationship and avoid problems." Well, that, of course, was terribly naïve, but I didnt know that. (everyone laughs)
For our first date we went for a walk in this nature sanctuary, I tried to explain to her Jungs idea of the animus and the anima. (more laughs) And she seemed very accepting, she sort of nodded her head. I dont what she was thinking exactly. I explained how that in each man there was a feminine, more or less unconscious dimension, and in each woman there was a masculine, more or less unconscious dimension, and that when a man and woman met, the man tended to, if we was attracted to the woman, it may be that it activated his own unconscious femininity, and this unconscious femininity would sort of come out from him and attach itself to the woman so that he really didnt know the difference between her as a person in her own right, and his own anima which had been projected out onto her. And the woman could do the same thing.
Now we are going to talk about this in some detail, but it is a very important idea, even on the practical level, because it effects our relationships. To go on with the story, we started doing this, and I wont say it was a game because we were seriously trying to do this, but at the same time it was somewhat theoretical. I said, "Wow. I understand this point, so I will tell her about it." And Tyra can tell you what happened next.
Tyra: Well, he not only talked about the anima and animus, but introversion and extraversion, so I was getting a crash course in Jungian psychology, but it didnt mean anything personal to me except that it was interesting and I liked him, but then, a couple of weeks later, I had this dream. In the dream I am in a building on the second floor, and I look out the window into the next building, and on the first floor there is a girl I know not very well, but I know her and shes painting a picture. I close in on the picture, and I see that it is of six men, but they are medieval men with the big frilly collars. And there is a black arc, and each one of the six men is looking at one part of the arc, and they all have blue eyes. Well, as I look at this painting, I begin to realize that those eyes are alive, that those men are alive. It was kind of an electrical feeling because I saw that they were really real in this painting. So the next morning I tell Jim what the dream is we are at a little café and I tell him what the dream is, and he says, "Oh, thats very interesting." Hes doing the same thing I did to him: "Thats very interesting." But when I get to the part about those six men, all of a sudden he sits up and says, "Would you please repeat that?" And I told him the whole dream again, and he said, "I know what that means because I read that the animus figure is often a multiple, and is often six, in the female, and that this is your picture of your animus." And so he got all excited, and that was the real beginning of our adventure because after that I started writing all my dreams, and he was writing down his dreams, and we would be sharing this. There were other things going on, as well, but we had begun the journey together. We had no outside help, but we just started doing this.
Jim: Now, when I heard that dream, it was half of the circle with the six men, and I didnt know enough to ask where is the other half of the circle, because then it would have been 12 figures and a complete circle, and Jung would have called it a mandala of what he calls the self. I didnt know that, but what I did know, pouring through what seemed to be this giant and obscure tome of Jung I had seen this little footnote notice where he talks about how the animus is expressed in these kinds of figures, and I realized when she told me the dream, it really wasnt some obscure historical footnote, but Tyra, even though she knew very little about Jung because all she knew was what I had told her, which wasnt much, she was experiencing out of the depths of her psyche that reality that Jung had been talking about, and in that way we realized that what he was talking about was real. And that was the important breakthrough. Her dream was the kind of dream people have sometimes when they begin analysis, a dream that kind of sums up where they are in their psychological development. And in our case it was like our conscious personalities were developed, but we had no real knowledge and understanding of the unconscious.
We were to go on and work very intensively, trying to deal with this kind of psychological journey and help each other on it. That is sort out of the ordinary. Usually people have some sort of analyst or counselor or someone who is helping them, but not always. Unfortunately, world-wide I think there is somewhat over maybe 1,000 Jungian analysts in the world, and they are expensive, so a lot of people simply cannot reach them or afford them, and they are left on their own. What I would like to say, though, is that this is a very real kind of interior journey, and it opens the door to the unconscious when we really go on it. It opens that door, and that door cannot be closed at will. In other words, it activates these energies, and once these energies are activated, we cannot just say, "Oh, go away because you are bothering me now" because they have been constellated. So if any of you do go on this journey, you have to take care with it. It is good to have someone, a good friend, or someone as a counselor or someone who can help you if times get rough. We are not talking about medical intervention about serious psychological problems. Thats not what we are talking about today. We are talking about the difficulties even when we are normal, functional people, to develop these unconscious, undeveloped parts of ourselves.
Jungs typology is sometimes seen as apart from the rest of his psychology. It is seen as a way to describe other people. For dealing with interpersonal relationships we can say, well, that person is an introvert, or that person is an extravert, but for Jung, himself, his typology was no different from what he called the process of individuation, which is the very process and goal that the whole psyche tends towards. It was just another way of looking at that fundamental process of psychological development. Today we are going to talk about it from this interpersonal point of view, talking about how you recognize these typological differences and what they imply, but tomorrow we are going to talk about it from an intrapersonal point of view of what it means in terms of inner transformation. So they are really just two sides of the same coin, and at the same time typology is really no different than the process of individuation. Thats why I am saying that while it is possible to learn typology as a series of useful ways of categorizing people, and if it were only that, my cautions about going on this journey would be superfluous, but since it is connected to the journey towards individuation, it does activate all sorts of inner psychic energies.
What we are going to do is, I would like you to put aside the knowledge you have of your own type for the moment, just put it in brackets, and we are going to spend time trying to discover what our own type is. In our home in the forest we have this old beat-out yellow couch that sits in our living room, and after the kids and everybody have jumped on it and knocked holes in it, it is in pretty sad shape. Well, sometimes people come and they want to discuss psychological things, and they get to sit on the yellow couch. We have talked to different people about their type, and I am often surprised at how readily they can grasp what their own psychological type is. It doesnt always happen, but even when they have no background, sometimes they can get a good grasp. Of course, it is only a beginning, but they can get a good grasp of whether they are introverted or extraverted, and so forth, and that is what we are going to do now. We are going to pretend you are all sitting on my yellow couch at home, and I am going to do the same process that I would do with one of my guests.
The first thing we talk about is introversion and extraversion. These words have taken on a certain meaning in our society. We are going to have to erase that meaning because it is often not what Jung had in mind, and Jung is the one who really introduced these words into contemporary language. For Jung, each one of us is both an introvert and an extravert. There can never be a person who is only introverted, or only extraverted. Introversion and extraversion are really the ways of describing the basic flow of our energy. In the extravert, the psychic energy, our attention and energy, flow outward and first of all go to the people and things around us. So the energy is outward to the people and things around us, and only then is a lesser amount of energy going inward into the interior world of the psyche, going inward to lets say the human subject. For the extravert the main flow of energy is outward, and then energy goes in. For the introvert, it is simply the reverse. The main energy of the introvert goes inward, and then some energy, a lesser amount usually, comes outward to the people and things around them.
Tyra: According to some tests, some 40% of us are introverted, so it is not a rare thing. I am an introvert, myself, and I want to tell you a couple of stories from an introverted point of view of what it is like in the world. My mother was an extravert. She loved to be around people, she loved to join groups, and she was very conscious of dressing right, saying the right things, having the right things in the house. I remember one day, I was just a kid, and I was coming home from school, and as I came down the hill my heart sank because there were a lot of cars on the street, and my mother was having a Bridge Club party at the house. And I said, "Oh, no, what am I going to do?" I thought about going in the back door, but there might be somebody in the kitchen, and if I were to go in the front door and I just run up the stairs, then Ill be safe. So I opened the door, and I get halfway up the stairs, and my mother, "Tyra, come down and say hello to everybody." My worst nightmare. So I go down the stairs, and she grabs me because she is afraid I am going to run away, and she says, "Come in and say hello to everybody." And then she whispers to me, "And be nice about it." So I say, "Hello everybody." And I run, and I go upstairs, I close the door, and sigh, thats over with.
When I was a teenager I went to a girls school, and there was going to be a party that one of the girls was giving, and so I fantasized about this party. It would be wonderful to meet Mr. Wonderful, handsome, etc., and so I couldnt wait for this party. I carefully chose my dress, and I finally got there. It was only then that I realized that all the other girls knew all the other boys, and they quickly paired off, and there I am, all by myself. So they had a big ping pong table, and I took one of the ping pong balls, and I started shredding it. The hostess younger son took pity on me he must have been three years younger so he talked to me, and he played ping pong with me when I wasnt shredding the ball. But I thought, "This is horrible." Your whole self-image as a teenager is very fragile anyway, and to see everybody in the dark corners was really not a big help to me. It wasnt until years later that I realized that a lot of the problem was my introversion, and I couldnt handle very well a party with a lot of strangers.
Another example was, I was very close to a neighborhood dog. I hadnt seen him for a couple of weeks, and a neighbor came down and mentioned that the dog had died, and then she went to talk about normal neighborhood news, and I just sat there and I didnt move. When she finally left, I ran into the house, and I got totally emotional about this, but as an introvert I would no way, under any circumstances, show my emotions in front of a neighbor that I didnt know very well. I have known extraverted people who, when they have emotions, they make sure everyone knows, and they go around and demand hugs and kisses and sympathy, and me, I was up in my room just in despair.
Jim: As I do that, sort of think about what choice you are going to make, whether you are more introverted or more extraverted.
When speaking to strangers, I sometimes hesitate, or find it quite easy. This is pretty indicative. They have done studies that we are all a little apprehensive about meeting strangers, whether we are introverts or extraverts, but the introverts are much more reluctant in that situation, and you can even see it in children, sometimes, the difference in the way they react to a stranger being around.
When I am in a new group, I tend more to listen, or talk.
People would call me quiet and reserved, open and easy to know.
When learning about a new subject I like to read about it, hear about it.
I think you get the idea that these are just a different sense of how we go about and relate to the world around us.
When I am planning a dinner I prefer having 4 people, 12 people. (2, right) This is just a sense that we have to get out of our mind that one is better than the other, that it is better to be an introvert because that says something about being interior or something. Thats not true. Its better to be an extravert because that says something about being social. Thats like saying it is better to have blue eyes than brown eyes, or better to be 5 than 6. It is a simple fact of nature, and it can even be found in the animal kingdom in various forms. So, I want you to decide whether you are more extraverted or more introverted. Do you have that decision? OK. You are going to have to live with it now. (everyone laughs)
I would like all the introverts to go to this side of the room, and all the extraverts go to the other side.
Woman: The story that I told turned out to be one that all of us could relate to, and that was that I am a director of lay ministry in our parish, we have a very large parish in St. Paul, 11,000 people, I am known by a lot of people because of my position there, and oftentimes I am on my way to church, and I think that is going to be just fine, and I just have an attack of introversion, and I just veer off to this little chapel a couple of miles from my home where the nuns say Mass at the same time as our Mass schedule because I just dont feel like I want to be surrounded. I can just go and quietly pray, and then leave.
Woman: One of the introverts that was up here mentioned that it takes time. She has to go ahead and plan what she is going to say and how she is going to say it. It is just the opposite for me, and there was an example last night at Fathers session. When we got to talking about tears, all I could remember was an experience that I had with tears when I was doing some research, and I was stomping at the bit because there was no opportunity for me to talk about it, and even when Fr. closed the session, I said, "Look. I still want to say something."
Jim: When Jung in 1913 gave his first paper on introversion and extraversion, he was quite excited about it, even though it cost him a lot to give that paper because at the time he was having problems with Freud and so forth, but the paper only talked about introversion and extraversion. Now, after he did that, he went back and he got more experience and he saw more people, and he said, "I dont think thats quite adequate enough." What he said was, "You know, this is a very fundamental kind of insight, and I am not the originator of it because I can trace it all the way back through history." So in much of his psychological types he is giving historical parallels, but he was saying, "I think there are different kinds of introversion and different kinds of extraversion." He spent a great deal of effort to try to describe the different ways of being an introvert, and an extravert. In Jungian terminology that means the different functions, and we are going to talk about those, but you have to never separate them from the general flow of the energy either in or out. It is just the kind of flow that energy takes, the kind of modality that energy takes, and I think that will become clearer as we go on.
The next area is the question of thinking and feeling. Thinking and these are going to be two ways Jung tried to characterize introversion and extraversion so thinking is pretty much what you would imagine. Its the use of concepts, ideas, reasoning, to come to a judgment about whether things are true or false. So you would see someone who sits down and he lists various points, he draws conclusions from these points, and he orderly comes to the conclusion that this should be done, or that is true or false. It is a very careful, logical process. Basically I think that is more readily understandable than what Jung meant by feeling. Feeling for Jung was not emotion. We all have emotions. Feeling was not this kind of inner emotion that would come out. Feeling was an equally valid but opposite way for someone to come to a judgment, not be reasoning it out, but in a more wholistic way by feeling whether something was good or bad for them. In the people where that is developed, it is a highly developed critical faculty which is virtually ignored in our kind of society. We believe that people who reason with articulated ideas can come to a valid conclusion, but if they feel, we think they are kind of winging it, and thats not at all true.
Tyra: The first example, as Jim and I are illustrating, Jim has the role of telling you what the theory is. Hell tell you the history, hell tell you how it evolved, hell tell you the definitions. I am very comfortable telling you the examples because it is coming from the heart more than the head. I have a feeling rapport with the stories, and thats what I can communicate. I certainly know the logic of it all, but I am trying to give you a feeling for it. One of the problems with being a feeler is that it is very hard to verbalize. I cant tell you what a feeling is. I can only say, and it sounds silly, I feel this feeling. It is a feeling I have. So when I am giving you an example, I am hopefully trying to get you to feel something of the example, as well. Take the example of, its dinnertime, the husband comes in from work, they are going to sit down at the table and have dinner in about five minutes, the phone rings, she answers it, it is a friend of hers, and she starts talking to her girlfriend. She has a feeling rapport with the girlfriend. She does not want to put the phone down, and say I have to leave because that is breaking the feeling connection, the dinner is getting cold, and the husband is getting irritated.
In the wintertime it is very hard for us. We get four feet of snow, and it means we either have 5 or 10 miles of unmaintained forest road, depending on which way we go. One of our neighbors had a 6-wheel-drive World War II Navy truck that he would use to plow it. To go out to town with this man is an adventure in itself because he is a mile and a half away. He has to plow his way to us, then he has to go to the next person, and then finally in a giant convoy where everyone is literally hooked up to each other and dragged through the woods. It took four hours to go five miles this one time we went. But this neighbor, because he is a thinker, has the plan. He knows that his truck works, he knows exactly what he is going to do if the snow gets too bad. If everything breaks down, you get stuck in a hole, then he knows how to stick a log under the wheels and rock his way out. So even though it sounds like a very scary event, he is in charge. He has this plan, he knows what he is going to do, and he goes ahead and does it. If one of us females goes hysterical on him, he has to discount that because he has his plan. And he got us out. It took a long time, but he got us out, and got us back in, as well.
Jim: As you have gone along, what is most natural? Is it for you to feel and make your judgments that way, or is to think and make it through that kind of rational process? People would consider me reasonable (that would be the thinking side) or warm and sympathetic. When people argue I want them to come up with a solution (like thinkers usually do, let them have it out and come up with an answer) or I want them to stop. When someone has a problem my first reaction is to help them work it out, or sympathize. When it comes to making a decision, I favor my heart, or my heart.
Woman: Once I was offered two jobs at the same time, which is really an enviable thing. I came to a very reasoned decision based on salary, benefits, and so forth, to take a certain job even though my gut level told me I wanted to take the other job, and it was not the right decision. There have been other times in my life when I have ignored my gut level, and gone with the reasoning, and it almost always the wrong decision. So I think I am learning to respect that gut level feeling more. I am starting to recognize myself as a feeler rather than as a thinker.
Woman: All of us in our group came up with the same example of one of the things we go through. We can be at a general meeting, and any one of us can say something. Nobody picks up on it. Nobody adds to what we have to say. It sits there for one-half hour, and then one of the thinkers gets up, takes our idea, lays it out, and everybody buys it. (everyone laughs)
Jim: If thinking and feeling were different ways of coming to a judgment, Jung felt that sensation and intuition were two different ways of coming to perceive things. So they are two different basic ways of perception. Sensation, he felt, was very much what we understand by it, which is the use of all our senses hearing, sight, touch and so forth to perceive by way of the senses. Thats pretty much how he describes sensation. Intuition, though, was harder. Lets imagine that a sensation person and an intuition person go into a room and they see a bowl of oranges. The sensation person the sensation focuses on those oranges, especially if they are an extraverted sensation type. They are aware of how many there are, and how orange they are, and whether they are ripe, and whether they would like to eat one. So they are very oriented to their physical surroundings, whereas the intuition type, seeing the same bowl, would register that there is a bowl of oranges, and immediately leap to thinking about how they would like to have an orange juice business, or how they would like to go to Florida and see orange trees, and within a few seconds they would be way off somewhere, far away from oranges while the sensation type is still right there with the actual oranges. Thats sort of how it works. Intuition means that people who like to see over the hill, they always like to see what is going to happen next. If the sensation type is present-oriented, the intuition type is future-oriented.
Tyra: For Christmas Ill just put the lights on the tree and put a bunch of ornaments on, and thats it, but a neighbor lady is a sensation type, and what she has done is, over the course of the years, found very unique Christmas tree ornaments, and each ornament has a whole story. Well, this is when the kids were such and such, and we went so and so place and we bought this one. So she has a whole feeling story about each ornament. She carefully puts them on the tree. At the end of the Christmas season she takes each one off, each one is given careful attention and wrapped, and put away for the next year. Myself, I notice that the tree has lights on it, and they are pretty, but thats about as far as I go. I am not a sensation type. I am an intuition type.
Ill give you an example about Jim. Jim loves to read, but when he reads, its not so much the book in front of him, but the ideas that are capturing him, and hes off running. So here he is reading and hes off in Tibet or off on a tropical island or hes into one of these intuitional, philosophical, metaphysical something, and one of us wants to get his attention. So we say, "Jim," or "Dad." No response. So then we have to say it again, and I have learned that if I wait from between 7 to 20 seconds, he will come out of his trip and become present to us, and be able to then focus his attention on whatever it is we want.
Jim had an aunt who was the head nurse in the emergency room of a hospital, and so we wanted to go see what it was like. She gave us permission to come, and it was the usual chaos, and then the ambulance came and there was somebody who had ODed on drugs. He was totally out of it. His aunt took a look at him, knew he was out with the drugs, and she said to his friend, "What was he taking?" And the guy said, "Im going to get into trouble and I cant tell you." So she said, "Look. You have to tell me now what he took, how much he took, because if you dont hes going to die." And the guy told her exactly what had happened because she was very to the present, this has to be handled now, and if I dont have the facts and figures, then I cant handle the situation. She is very sensation-oriented, which is essential. Thank heavens we have all of our types to handle the different situations we find in life.
And the last example I have is, we like to take trips, and we dream about these trips. We know we are going to go here and there, we are going to do this and that, but, because we are intuition types and sensation is so undeveloped in us, it is sometimes torture to try to figure out what are we going to eat, how are we going to get our food, where are we going to sleep, how are we going to get there, what are the directions?
Jim: I tend to get excited about the future, or savor the present moment. When I have set plans, the intuitive type says, I feel somewhat tied down, because they always want to get out and go, or I am comfortable with them. If I were to work for a manufacturer I would prefer research and design, or production and distribution. I am inclined to get involved in many projects at once, or do one thing at a time. If people were to complain about me they would say I have my head in the clouds, or I am in a rut.
Now I want you to make your decision, and then I want the sensation people to come over here, and the intuition people to go over there.
Man: I would like to share two things that have to do with sensation. One is, whenever I return from any kind of trip or venture, the first thing I do when I get back to the retreat house, no matter what hour of the night it is, and it is usually night is, I need to go look at messages, get to mail, and before I can go to bed, I will systematically go through all my mail and messages, and I will line them all up, and prioritize what has to be dealt with for re-entry.
I do the same thing with the community. There are 7 of us. I believe in a lot of long-range planning for the year, and most of the people in the community are people who, from my prejudiced point of view, have no concept of order. It is "let it occur," and that does violence to me. Tyra triggered off a memory that I would like to share about a trip that I look several years ago with two of my classmates, one of whom is very much like myself, and another is very, very different. We were going to go for 10 days and take a 1,000 mile ride. We had projected where we would go, the amount of mileage, where we would stay, those kinds of things. Everything was going very nice for the first day, until we came by this lake. We were heading for this destination, we had to be there by this time in order to have dinner, etc., etc. Our other classmate suddenly said, "The water looks great. Lets go take a canoe trip." Well, we were in the middle of nowhere, there were no canoes around, but that didnt phase him because he remembered we had passed a town about a half hour back, and he was sure we could find a canoe there. This is the kind of dialogue we got into. You may imagine that after 10 days, we have never gone out on a trip again! That was 10 years ago. We have never had a repeat. (everyone laughs)
Man: I will not tell you about our honeymoon because I was supposed to make the arrangements for the honeymoon, and all I knew is where we were going. There were no details taken care of whatsoever. Needless to say, the tension in our marriage started very, very early. I think its been painful, but it has also been an occasion for growth. In our family life, because my wife is such a strong sensation person, when she talks to us who are intuitive, she doesnt yet realize that she doesnt have our attention when she is already into her second or third or fourth order, and I keep trying to tell her, "You dont even know yet that we dont know you are talking to us." And I will watch the ones who are like me, and she has already given them four orders, and they dont even know shes talking to them yet.
Jim: You are doing very well with this. Where do we go from here? If we can each make one of these kinds of decisions in each of these areas, then we have the raw material to now try to put it together and come up with what our own type is. Suppose we have chosen extraversion. Now we have to choose which one of the four functions we have just discussed is the most developed of the four. This is the way Jung described it. It sounds a little complicated, but I think it will fall into place. He said we all have one of those functions thats the most developed. Suppose it is thinking that is most developed. Then feeling is going to be the least developed in our personality. Or suppose sensation is our most developed function, then intuition is going to be the least developed. What we are going to try to do, then, is try to work out which is our most developed function, and which is our least developed. Sometimes there are two functions that are fairly well developed. In fact, when we are young, most of us have two fairly well developed functions, and part of the struggle in maturing as we get older is to get in touch with those other two functions.
It is not always easy to figure out what your first function is. One way of doing it is to think of the area of these four functions that you are the worst at. That will give you a clue that its opposite will be your most developed function. Thats one way to check back and forth.
Tyra: What we have been doing so far, introversion-extraversion, thinking-feeling, sensation-intuition, we have all been using our strongest functions to separate into our groups. When you talk about the fourth function, the least developed function, this is the most painful part of figuring out your type.
When Jim and I started our own trip, and we were doing dreams, we were doing memories, and we were doing all kinds of things together, it took me two years to realize I was an introvert. I just didnt know that, and it took a very long time to see what my fourth function was sensation. One easy way is to try to think up the kind of situation that always makes you mad, that always drives you up the wall. When this situation happens, its like taking nails and scraping them on a blackboard because we never seem to outgrow this or overcome this or be patient about it. It is always like a sword in our side.
One of my examples is going to the laundromat. Now, to most people this does not seem to be an earth-shaking event, but when I go to the laundromat I worry about, did I bring the soap, do I have the change. If I do not have the change, where am I going to get the change. If I dont have the soap, where am I going to get the soap. That means I have to go find a store to get the soap. Once I put the clothes in the washing machine, is the washing machine going to break? And that means I have to do the whole thing all over again. Also, as an intuitive type I like to run off as soon as I put the clothes in, do something I dont want to waste this valuable time just doing the laundry and then I have to switch into the dryer. Well, is somebody going to steal my nice, dry clothes now? because I run off again.
Another situation. When I was a child, I had an aunt who had a ritual. At the beginning of every school year she would take my mother and me shopping for clothes for me. Clothes must be my bottom most whatever because she was a sensation type, and she would go to the stores, find something nice, feel it, check the seams, and then, she would make me go into the fitting room and try outfit after outfit on, and each time I would have to come out, present myself, they would decide whether the color was right or not, go back in. At the end of the day, every year, I would be hysterical, literally hysterical. As I got older I would begin to contain it a little bit, but it was like somebody telling you, what is your worst thing to do? and now you have to do it all day to the exclusion of anything else. She, of course, was totally befuddled, and it wasnt until years later that I understood what was going on.
Jim: Whatever our fourth function is, its a trial to other people, and we are not always very aware of it because it is in the unconscious for us. It is beyond our range of normal awareness, and there is nothing more salutary in all this is if we can get a clue to what our own weakness is, because then we begin to be more sensitive to how we are interacting with people.
If we recognize that these differences exist, then we should try to see them in the kind of arenas where we live out our lives. In community we have the same kind of situation going on where the superior of the community can have one temperament, and therefore see the rule and the spirit of the community through the lens of that temperament, and create a situation where people of different temperaments feel uncomfortable simply because no one ever suggested that these kinds of differences were so deep and fundamental. To give an example, even in the creation of community life there are a whole series of rules and constitutions and so forth that in the old days, pre-Vatican days, dictated fairly closely in some communities what to eat and how long to sleep, and how to recreate and how to study, and in every area people of different types have different needs. Take study, for example. There are some types that can sit literally for hours in their rooms in front of their books, and think that thats heavenly delight because they enjoy that and its exciting. There are other people who physically is just more active and outgoing, and they need to get out of that room, they need to go out and run around, they need to go and get some exercise. Otherwise they feel they are going to go crazy or go screaming. These things werent always taken into account. So we are into a whole series of problems that I would like to discuss now where this lack of understanding of type recognition causes all sorts of conflicts.
(at the blackboard)
Lets say heres the man who is an introverted thinking type, and a woman who is an extraverted feeling type. When they first meet, they talk and they exchange the normal kinds of information where are you from, and so forth but when they begin to become attracted to each other, oftentimes what is happening is something like this. This man has an anima, or feminine dimension in himself that is a feeling dimension that is in his unconscious, and therefore extraverted. In other words, he has an image of the kind of woman who would complete him. This is one-half of him. This kind of woman would complete him. Unfortunately, he doesnt know that consciously. Thats why its called unconscious. It is simply not there in his conscious mind, and so when he meets a woman like this, he can feel a strong sense of attraction. If it becomes very intense, it becomes what is often called falling in love as a strong element of this psychological attraction of opposites.
The woman, for her part, is an extraverted feeler. Then introverted thinking is the least developed part of her personality, and she has a longing to be complete inside herself. So if these two longings meet, then what happens looks something like this. The man will take a look at this woman, and what he will see will look like this. It is as if he is looking at the woman, and he is projecting out of his own unconscious this image he has of her, this perfect soul-mate that will make him feel complete and happy. When he looks at her, he is not only seeing her, but he is mostly seeing this image that is coming out of his own unconscious. The woman can do the same thing. She projects out this image of the ideal male complement, and when she looks at the man, she isnt really seeing him as much as this ideal image that is coming out of her own unconscious. This means that at the beginning of the relationship, they have this tremendous sense of completion and happiness, that things have finally clicked, that things have finally come together, that this is what it is all about because they are experiencing what is the promise of wholeness. But it is just a promise, and what is happening in this situation is that they are not really seeing the other person. They dont realize how different that other person is. In the case of marrying your opposite, you are often in for a rough ride because after a while reality will reassert itself, sometimes in a matter of months, and you begin to discover that the person that the person that you married is not the person that you thought they were because you acted under the influence, in this case, of projection. This is kind of a wide-spread process. It is not always complete opposites, but many men have more developed thinking than feeling, and many women have more developed feeling than thinking, and situations like this arise very commonly. Then they are caught up in a relationship with a person who is very much different from them, and they are supposed to go through life together even when they see everything differently. I dont have to go into detail of the pain that can cause, and the disruption in the family life, if that happens. What I am saying is that in other areas, for example, community life can have the same kind of tensions. They just come about in different ways, for example between the superior and members of the community, or between the community members, when they are engaged in being a common life, and they didnt choose each other. The people felt they had a vocation to this common life, but they didnt necessarily choose a vocation to live with each other. So you can get very diverse personality types in the same community, and set up a similar situation, perhaps without the same amount of projection, but a similar situation. You find yourself living with people who do not understand where you are coming from, and that can be difficult, as well.
There is a certain amount of attraction precisely because inside of ourselves we feel the need of completion, and that person promises to complete us, and so we are attracted to them. At the same time, we are often in daily life at odds with them, and cant get along with them, and they irritate us, as well, once we really find out what they are like. It is kind of a paradox. We want them to be that completion of ourselves, but we want them to be just like us, as well. So when we find out theyre not, that theyre really different, then we get upset with them.
The goal today is to see that we need this kind of type tolerance. So thats the first stage. If we could see that these differences are actually normal human differences, when someone does something that is according to their type, then if we see it in that light, we tend not to get as annoyed and irritated because we see there is some reason. They are not doing it just to bother us. Thats how it feels, sometimes, that they are doing it just to get under our skin, but in fact they are often simply living out their natural temperamental endowment, and to me that can short-circuit a lot of the kind of conflicts that go on if we could understand that. They are not doing that just to be nasty to us, to stick a pin in us, but they are doing it because thats the way they are made. Thats the first stage, but for all of us who have lived with people who really rub on us, even if we recognize their type, and they recognize ours, we are going to reach a stage where we wish it didnt happen. Tolerance is not quite enough. We wish they would change, but they also wish we would change, and thats really tomorrows topic, how that kind of deep change can come about. Here we are aiming at this goal of what can we do as far as developing type tolerance.
Tyra: If you were now to forget everything that you had decided today, whether you were an introvert or an extravert, or a feeler or thinker, and just begin to be your own tracker for your own type. You take one or two or three situations that happened today, you reflect on them, and you try to figure out whether you were using more your feeling in this situation, or your thinking, or your introversion, or your extraversion. Then tomorrow you put on your individual map another one or two situations, and then the next day you do this over a period of time. It is sort of like a puzzle. Because we are both introverted and extraverted, we have our thinking moments and our feeling moments, no matter what we are, and our sensation and intuition, as you put the little pieces into your puzzle, knowing for sure that yes, I am reacting to so-and-so because that person is an extravert and I am an introvert, or I feel a special rapport because we are both introverts you sort of know that little piece at that little moment, and so you put it on your map, and then you put another one, and eventually you will have enough pieces to be able to see that, after seeing all this, that I am predominantly introverted, I am predominantly a feeler. I think then, after a time, combined with other things like dreams and memories and whatever, you will come to a true understanding of what your own type is, and you will see the dynamics. As you continually interact with people in your community, in your family, people on the job, you will see that the same mechanisms are happening over and over again because of the various typological dynamics.
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