Cognitive functions

All Jungian typology is based on four different functions, and two different attitudes (extra- and introversion). In his work, he talked about eight different types, one for each function + attitude. Both Myers-Briggs and socionics on the other hand has sixteen different types, all based around those four functions. However, in the works that followed, the idea of the functions were developed in two, slightly different directions. However, they are both at large consistent with what Jung wrote about them.

Extraverted intuition

Extraverted intuition, or Ne by Jung and MBTI. In socionics, besides Ne, called I (intuition), black intuition, or Socionics symbol Ne.svg.

Intuition with the extraverted attitude, by Jung, is a focus on the potential and possibilities of things, in an external, objective assessment, not touching the subjective unconsciousness, but being occupied with what could be assessed with the outside information.

In MBTI, this developed into a focus on ideas and possibilities, and because of this, about whatever possible ideas and possibilities that could come from an idea, making it diverging function, starting as a small stream, ending up in becoming the ocean. A typical example would be brainstorming and to consider something from every possible angle.

In socionics, it developed into becoming the assessment of potential. Understanding the inner “essence” of an object or a person, to understand the potential that it has. Just as in MBTI, it’s also about considering different options and viewpoints, looking to open hidden doors.

Introverted intuition

By Jung and MBTI, introverted intuition, also known as T (time), white intuition or Socionics symbol Ni.svg.

According to Jung, this function is highly connected to the archetypes. All introverted functions are, but being intuitive, focused on non-concrete, non-“real” perception, this function is highly connected to them, and the collective unconscious. It’s a perception of intuitive data (if data is the right word to describe intuition with), that is then processed by the collective unconscious and the archetypes. And this result, the filtered information, is what Ni is focused on.

In MBTI, this function developed into a, in contrast to Ne, converging function. Unconsciously picking up on external, real data, and then connecting patterns and coming up with a single idea or point after a while.  Usually seen as working as magnification glass. Unconscious, and expresses itself through a gut feeling.

In socionics, Ni is about the development and change in time, how events are interconnected, and the timing of things. How and why one event follows the other, predicting behaviour and how an event will unfold. Focused on an event and its position in time.

Extraverted sensing

Se (MBTI and Jung), and in socionics sometimes F (force), volitional sensing, black sensing or Socionics symbol Se.svg.

According to Jung, extraverted sensing is the objective perception of external data. It’s the most raw perception of a person, focusing solely on what is real and objective, repressing any subjective aspect. Perception of the physical aspects of an object.

In MBTI, it’s described as a focus on the five senses, as well as impulsiveness. Focused on the present moment, and the tangible reality.

First of all, to understand the idea behind how socionics explains extraverted sensing, we have understand sensing. The word “space” is sometimes used for this function. The extraverted, objective aspect of this, understanding the space that “belongs” to a person, and how this can be expanded or defended. It’s about force, influence and how much space things take up. Perceives everything as a clash of different spaces.

Introverted sensing

Si, or S (sensations), white sensing or Socionics symbol Si.svg.

Introverted sensing, according to Jung, is the subjective impression of something real. Characterized as impressionistic art, focusing on the impression of an object over the object itself. However, it differs from Ni in that it’s about the impressions rather than connecting it to archetypes.

In MBTI, introverted sensing has developed to being focused on connecting things to your past experience, since it’s introverted (internal) and focused on sensation. It is also seen as being about being organized and punctual. As well as this, Si is detail oriented, and since it’s based on a focus on past experience, often described as traditional.

However, in socionics it’s described differently, because of a different interpretation of introversion, which will be observable through the other functions as well. Rather than being internal, it’s understood as the relation between an external object and the subject, or the person in question. Because of this, Si is described as the impression that something external has on the person, and how they feel about it. It’s a focus on what’s comfortable and enjoyable, concerned with the quality of an experience.

Extraverted feeling

Fe, black ethics, E (emotions) or Socionics symbol Fe.svg.

This function is about assessing whether something is good or not based not on a subjective feeling, but based on objectivity. Even if it might be seen as subjective, as it after all is a feeling function, it rids itself of every subjective factor, using only what is externally present to place their value. It is however not fake in any way, but merely based on external qualities, ignoring and repressing the subjective ones.

In MBTI, this function is about understanding the feelings and emotions of another person, often equated to having empathy. It’s about changing the mood of a situation and helping people, organizing their surroundings to make people around them happy. Understanding how to emotionally appeal to people, knowing which emotional buttons to push.

Again, to understand socionics, we have to understand how they talk about feeling in itself. It’s referred to as “energy”, the energy state and level of a person. Fe in this case is the objective understanding of this, so it’s about the state that another person or situation is in, and how this can be changed. Also highly attuned to how and why the energy state changes.

Introverted feeling

Fi, R (relations), white ethics or Socionics symbol Fi.svg.

Introverted feeling, according to Jung, is about depth. He used the phrase “still waters run deep” to describe a person with Fi. It’s about bringing the inner pictures and ideals to reality, rather than relating to the external world.

In MBTI, it’s about authenticity and creating your own moral compass. Being true to yourself, and not being fake. It’s about the inner, subjective values of someone.

In socionics, it’s the combination between how they explain “feeling” as energy, and introversion. Fi is looking at the distance and nature of the relation between two different states of energy, two different people. The comparison between two energy states.

Extraverted thinking

Te, P (pragmatism), practical logic, black logic or Socionics symbol Te.svg.

Extraverted thinking, based on what Jung wrote, is all about external facts. Trying to dismiss the subjective factors, repressing introverted feeling.

Te in MBTI is about planning and executing, being effective and dealing with things. Impersonal and objective, it’s about creating a system and organizing the external environment. Pushy and making things happen.

In socionics, Te is all about business and objective logic, focusing on efficiency, practicality and pragmatism. It’s focused on the factual accuracy of things and is very matter-of-fact.

Introverted thinking

Ti, L (laws), structural logic, white logic or Socionics symbol Ti.svg.

This function is again based on the collective unconscious, just as Fi, and is focused on the theories that comes from the subject of a person, rather than being correlated by external facts. The facts are not important or interesting,  if they doesn’t fit together with the theory or archetypal idea.

In MBTI, it’s a function that is concerned with the accuracy of things, not focusing on creating but on perfecting a system, looking at holes they can find in systems. It’s focused on logical consistency, and trying to create a web of knowledge to make sense of the world.

In socionics, it’s focused on systems, and the relationship between objects. Structure, hierarchy and how things fit together, how something fits into a greater pattern and structure, are all parts of Ti. Focused on consistency and globality of this system.

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