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Thread: A new vision of MBTI and function stacks: Open function stack

  1. #1
    New Member Vendrah's Avatar
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    Oct 2019

    A new vision of MBTI and function stacks: Open function stack

    In this thread I am going to show my new hypothesis in MBTI types and cognitive functions, which brings an interesting and different point of view of MBTI and cognitive functions. I have 3 names for it “Free Function Stacking”, “Open Function Stack” or “Vendrah Function Stacking”.

    Before that, I would like to explain in philosophical “terms”. The idea here is that each person has a “deep” personality, and that, although the individual may have his type, there is more beyond that. And it is possible to tackle this beyond (partially, I recognize) through cognitive functions analysis, in a way that translate more information about the personality, and also, it is possible to translate a cognitive function stack into a 4-letter MBTI type. This bringes more uniqueness when compared to MBTI.

    The Free Function Stacking is not exactly stacking since there is no specific position for cognitive functions, but rather that there are some specific logical relations to be followed by a cognitive function stack in order to correspond to a specific type (this sounds complicated but it wont be when I explain further on this post).

    But first, this is what motivated me to create an alternative function stacking: As stated @reckful in Typology Central and Personality Cafe, the Harold Grant Function Stack is found to fail in scientifical studies (the cognitive stack as we know it, the one that, for example, states that ISTJ cognitive function stack is Si-Te-Fi-Ne). He says:

    As part of that linked article, Reynierse points out that the 1998 MBTI Manual (co-authored by Naomi Quenk, who Reynierse specifically calls out for her lack of standards) cited a grand total of eight studies involving type dynamics — which Reynierse aptly summarizes as "six studies that failed, one with a questionable interpretation, and one where contradictory evidence was offered as support." He then notes, "Type theory's claim that type dynamics is superior to the static model and the straightforward contribution of the individual preferences rests on this ephemeral empirical foundation."
    The article is an interesting read, and its linked here:

    This was my motivation, but I would like to please to not discuss about the validity of the cognitive function stacks. Also, my proposal is actually not really stacking, I just couldnt find a better word for it. But here we go:

    The Hypothesis: The cognitive functions are free to move without any specific order but they have to obey some restrictions in order to match the personality dimensions preferences (dichotomy).

    My idea is that each person has their own cognitive function stacking, that the individual stack does describe the individuality even deeper than the 4-letter code, and that the function stack dont need a very specific arrangement like a specific dominant function, a specific tertiary function, etc... Because of that, there are 8!=40320 different arrengements on personality, and that results as hundreds of possibilitys for different stacking at each personsonality type, or, in other words, a specific personality type can have hundreds of different cognitive functions order.

    1st position: 8 possibilites (Se,Si,Ne,Ni,Te,Ti,Fe,Fi)
    2nd position: 7 possibilites
    3rd position:6 possibilities
    4th: 5
    Total of 8*7*6*5*4*3*2*1=8!=40320 different orders

    But in order to be a specific type, there are things to be met. These are the restrictions.

    So, explaining by examples, in order to someone to be an intuitive type, this is needed:
    Or, in other words, if the person has preference for intuition, then the sum of their Ne and Ni in the test must be significantly higher than the sum of their Se and Si. If a non-cognitive functions (dichotomy) MBTI test says that the person has preference for intuition, that should mean that the sum of the persons Ni and Ne is significantly higher than the sum of persons Se and Si.

    So, these are relations/restrictions related to N/S and T/F axis:

    N vs S (relation NS)
    Degree of preference for iNtuition: Ne+Ni
    Degree of preference for Sensation/Sensing: Se+Si

    Ne+Ni>Se+Si translate as preference for intuition
    Ne+Ni<Se+Si translate as preference for sensing
    Ne+Ni=Se+Si translate as ambivalence/no preference

    T vs F (relation TF)
    Degree of preference for Thinking: Te+Ti
    Degree of preference for Feeling: Fe+Fi

    Te+Ti>Fe+Fi translate as preference for thinking
    Te+Ti<Fe+Fi translate as preference for feeling
    Te+Ti=Fe+Fi translate as no preference/ambivalence

    Once thinking and feeling has been decided (or not, in case where no preference was found), we proceed to I/E and J/P axis. In case where there is no preference between thinking/feeling and intuition/sensing (and for simplification in case of statistic analysis), we proceed to the complete versions of I/E and J/P relations/equations:

    I vs E (relation IE)
    Degree of preference for Introversion: Si+Ni+Fi+Ti
    Degree of preference for Extroversion: Ne+Fe+Se+Te

    Si+Ni+Fi+Ti>Ne+Fe+Se+Te translate as preference for introversion
    Si+Ni+Fi+Ti<Ne+Fe+Se+Te translate as preference for extroversion
    Si+Ni+Fi+Ti=Ne+Fe+Se+Te translate as ambiversion/ambivalence/no preference

    J vs P (relation JP)
    Provided by Legion (Typology Central)
    Degree of preference for Perceveing: Ti+Fi+Se+Ne
    Degree of preference for Judgement: Te+Fe+Si+Ni

    Ti+Fi+Se+Ne>Te+Fe+Si+Ni translate as preference for perceveing
    Ti+Fi+Se+Ne<Te+Fe+Si+Ni translate as preference for judgement
    Ti+Fi+Se+Ne=Te+Fe+Si+Ni translate as no preference/ambivalence

    In case there is a clear decision in one or two of N/S and T/F axis, there are two possibilites approach. In one of them, we use only cognitive functions related to the preferences and remove the cognitive functions that are not related to the in-case preference (or, instead, do the analysis without that - “complete relations version”). The principle here is that there is no reason into using a cognitive function that is related to a non-preferred trait and this fixed two issues on the experiment topic. For example, if a person has a preference for intuition and feeling, we remove the cognitive functions related to sensing and thinking to evaluate J/P and I/E (the principle for this case transform as “there is no reason into using sensing and thinking cognitive functions for an intuitive-feeler type”), and the relations goes as follow:

    I vs E
    Degree of preference for Introversion (specific case: NF): Ni+Fi
    Degree of preference for Extroversion (specific case: NF): Ne+Fe

    Ni+Fi>Ne+Fe translate as preference for introversion
    Ni+Fi<Ne+Fe translate as preference for extroversion
    Ni+Fi=Ne+Fe translate as ambiversion/ambivalence/no preference

    J vs P
    Degree of preference for Perceveing(specific case: NF): Fi+Ne
    Degree of preference for Judgement(specific case: NF): Fe+Ni

    Fi+Ne>Fe+Ni translate as preference for perceveing
    Fi+Ne<Fe+Ni translate as preference for judgement
    Fi+Ne=Fe+Ni translate as no preference/ambivalence

    For clarification: This system do admit types with an X (like, for example, INTX). There are additional analysis that can be done (and sub-typing, lots of sub-typing) by having the persons cognitive function stack. Although not mandatory, I recommend analyse these preferences:

    Te vs Ti - Which person prefers the most, Te or Ti and how it impacts on personality.
    Fe vs Fi - The same
    Ne vs Ni - The same
    Se vs Si - The same
    I also recommend look for the opposing role function and its strenght (fourth point in the next post).

    This is the basic idea explained.
    Last edited by Vendrah; 10-31-2019 at 01:33 AM.

  2. #2
    New Member Vendrah's Avatar
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    Oct 2019
    Time to go to some specific interesting observations through the equations (this part is more complicated and less essential).

    First, and most important, I am not going to hide any of this model possible weakness. No hiding weakness just to sound precise! There is one weakness that is simple and there was a thing that I thought it was a weakness but I had found a flaw on it and it only deserves a foot note. The simple one will be on this point and the complicated potential weakness will be the last point Ill do on PART 2 (point seven).

    The simple one is that the "I-E" concept on dichotomy is different than the "I-E" concept inside the cognitive functions. Simplifying, "I-E" dichotomy is related to concepts that works more towards peole, on sociability. The "I-E" on cognitive functions is a preferency towards the object - if attention is towards the object (external) then its extroversion, if attention is towards self (inside) then its introversion. For example, while watching the sunset is an introverted activity on dichotomy concepts and an extroverted activity on "I-E" on cognitive function concepts. Althought these different concepts matches with each other in some occasions (most occasions, likely), they wont match all, so when I sum the extraverted functions and then the introverted ones I am measuring the I-E using the cognitive function concept, but the dichotomy tests will use a slightly different concept, and thus the conversion can be quite compromised in some cases (cases where the person is introverted in one concept and extroverted in the other one).

    Second, the relations does provide some tendencies – I repeat, these are tendencies, not laws. If we analyze either the complete equations version or the specific type equations for JP and IE for any specific type (relation NS, relation TF, relation IE, relation JP) we will find that any given specific cognitive function appears in 3 of the 4 equations/relations. And from all 8 functions, one of them will always appear before the > sign, which indicates that this function is the highest of all considering the average of all possible solutions. In the case of the complete relations version, one of them will always appear after the > sign, which indicates that this function is the lowest of all considering the average of all possible solutions (but this tendency is weaker than the former because it only happens while using the complete version of relations/equations that is less reliable). For example, consider the ISFP case:
    NS relation: Se+Si>Ne+Ni
    TF relation: Fi+Fe>Te+Ti
    IE relation: Fi+Si>Fe+Se
    JP relation: Fi+Se>Fe+Si
    We observe that function Fi is always on the higher side of the equation, which indicates a tendency for higher Fi in the average in all solutions for ISFP. This indicates a tendency, not law, for ISFPs to be what we usually call “Fi-dom”.
    In the other hand, using the complete version in the IE and JP relation for ISFP, we have:
    NS relation: Se+Si>Ne+Ni
    TF relation: Fi+Fe>Te+Ti
    IE relation: Fi+Si+Ni+Ti>Te+Fe+Se+Ne
    JP relation: Fi+Se+Ne+Ti>Te+Fe+Si+Ni
    We observe that Te is always after the > operator, which indicates a tendency for lower Te in average on all solutions for ISFP. This indicates a tendency, not law, for ISFPs to be have what we usually call “low Te” or achile heels Te. Notice that that the Fi-dom tendency appears both in complete and specific version of the relations, while Te-weakness tendency only appears in the complete version of the relations. The complete version of the relations applys in most of the case, but there are specific cases which is complete inappropriate (it fails), and, therefore, the tendency for Fi-dom is stronger and more reliable than the low Te one. Still, there is a trick here. This approach consider that, from all >40 thousand possibilities, all of them happens equally. We know that some cognitive function orders are consider unstable in psycology, for example, a fully introverted function stack (like INFX Fi>Ni>Ti>Si>Fe>Ne>Te>Se) indicates an “irrealistic” amount of introversion. Some solutions appears more frequently than others. Since this dynamic is unknown (and should be quite complex), there is a possibility that we may not find these patterns after analysing several personal cases.

    Third, I would like to use the INFX to point how subtypes happens (because its one of the simplest cases). If we use the specific relations, for INFX, we have:
    NS relation: Ne+Ni>Se+Si
    TF relation: Fe+Fi>Te+Ti
    IE relation: Fi+Ni>Fe+Ne
    JP relation: Fi+Ne=Fe+Ni
    From the JP relation we can generate two different subtypes. First, INFX can happen if Ni=Ne (no preference for Ne or Ni) AND Fi=Fe (no preference for Fi or Fe). The second solution to this case is Fi>Fe AND Ni>Fe. The first case is more like a neutral INFX, whereas the second case is an INFX that is like an INFJ in terms of intuition and is like an INFP in terms of feeling (we could call the second case Fi-Ni INFX). These are two different INFX types. Notice that Fe>Fi with Ne>Ni would be another solution except that it disrupts the IE relation, because it pulls extraversion levels too high for an introverted. Fe>Fi with Ne>Ni actually belongs to an ENFX case. We can extend this example to an X on the JP axis. For other cases, the key thing is to analyse the relations/equations to draw conclusions (and use the complete version or the specific version depending on circumstances). Some of these cases can be quite a headache to analyse (or not be much conclusive).

    Fourth, this point maybe is more useful for clarifing than to actually draw a conclusion, I would like to anticipate a point I would do on a search. Some Grant Cognitive Function Stacks do an inversion with a change on the J/P axis. For example, INTJ and INTP has complete different Grant stacking. What actually happens is that the average stack for INTJ and INTP are a lot more alike each other instead of being completely different. For example, a more realistic INTP function stack example could be, Ti>Ne>Ni>Te>Fi>Si>Se>Fe. The 3rd Ni and 4th Te gives an impression that there is some kind of a “sub-INTJ” in this INTP case, like this example INTP has an INTJ wing. This is fake, its just a impression that we have from Grant Stacking (which is where the Ni+Te resembles INTJ comes from). These 3rd and 4th functions appears there not because there is a sub-INTJ, but because they come from a high preference for intuition and a high preference for thinking. The high preference for intuition translate as Ne+Ni>>Se+Si, which means that Ni passes both Se and Si. The high preference for thinking translate as Te+Ti>>Fe+Fi, which means that Te passes both Fe and Fi, which, combined, lead to Te and Ni in 3rd and 4th position. This happens because the INTJ and INTP realistic stacking should not be that different. One random example of INTJ and INTP with clear preference for intuition and clear preference for thinking could look like this:
    INTJ: Ni>Te>Ti>Ne>Fi>Si>Fe>Se
    INTP: Ti>Ne>Ni>Te>Fi>Si>Se>Fe
    There is a fake impression of INTJ having a sub-INTP, but that pattern actually becomes because from the INT (the NT to be more precise) letters. In realistic terms, the cognitive function stacks are a lot more alike each other (because both are INT), specially in the analysis of the average function stack.

    Fifth, an useful concept is the opposing-role function. We are familiar as “tertiary function”. The concept of opposing-role function (in Free Function Stacking) is this: “The opposing-role cognitive function is the strongest function that belongs to a non-prefered side of N/S and T/F dimensions.” For example, for ENFP, the non-prefered functions, regarding the N/S and T/F dimensions, are Se, Si, Te and Ti (because Ne/Ni and Fe/Fi are functions related to intuition and feeling, which are in the ENFPs preferences). The strongest of all these four (from the first point we know that there is always one function that is the least likely to be the opposing-role because it tends to be low, which is function Si for the case) is the opposing-role function. We know that the opposing-role function will be ahead from at least 3 other functions in the any given function stack. Looking at the whole cognitive function stack and all its solution, which is too complicated to explain, we can observe that the opposing-role function, in almost all possibilities, can assume the 3rd, 4th and 5th position of the function stack. When it is in the 3rd position, it means a strong opposing-role function, and in this case the opposing-role function will weaken one of the preferences in the N/S or T/F dimensions. In the ENFP example, an ENFP with strong tertiary Se (yes, I really mean Se and not Te for the example, it could be Te or even Ti although) will not have a strong preference for intuition, because in the SN relation, (Ne+Ni>Se+Si) the Se would be too high to build a strong preference for intuition. Going a little off a bit, the ENFP with strong tertiary Se will be more alike an ESFP with strong tertiary Ne than an average ENFP in comparison, and this shows how much a MBTI map is quite complicated (but looking at dichotomy makes this clear… an ENFP with 60% of intuition is closer to an ESFP with 60% sensing than from an ENFP with 90% of intuition). Going back, when it is in the 4th position, it means middle opposing-role function. In the case of 5th position, it is the weak opposing-role function, which will automatically means that at least one of the N/S and T/F dimensions holds a strong preference. In the ENFP example, an ENFP with 5th opposing-role Se wil have, necessarily, a strong preference for Feeling (Fe+Fi>>Te+Ti, because Te and Ti are in the 6th-7th-8th position). Notice that the concept of opposing-role requires that there is no X in the SN (or NS) and FT (or TF) dimensions. In these cases, this concept is no longer useful.

    6th, This partially comes from my “weak theorical background”, maybe? But I have a doubt that connects to this… There are 4 MBTI criterias… I-E, N-S, F-T, J-P… Ne, Ni, Se, Si comes from combining N-S and I-E. Fe, Fi, Te, Ti from combining F-T with I-E. Why there is no combination between J-P and why not having Je, Ji, Pe and Pi as cognitive functions? And second thing, why using the I-E axis as a basis and not, for, i dont know, N-S? We could re-write the whole cognitive functions as Intuitive Feeling (Fn), Intuitive Thinking (Tn), Sensative Feeling (Fs), Sensative Thinking (Ts), which corresponds to a combination of T-F with N-S, and intuitive introversion (In), intuitive extroversion (En), sensative introversion (Is), sensative extroversion (Es), I never got why it is made in the specific arrengement we know and not these alternative ones. There are 24 cognitive functions considering all these possibilities, removing the same letters in different orders (for example, Ne=En, Intuitive extroversion=Extraverted Intuition). I know that these are the Jung original frame of view but I never saw any reasonable justification to why this specific way and not the other ones.

    And for last, the complicated weakness. The model could state that (and this could be wrong and the possible achile heels of the principle: “The principle here is that there is no reason into using a cognitive function that is related to a non-preferred trait and this fixed two issues on the experiment topic so far.”) that a strong S-N and F-T is a solo condition to determine if the person is P or J (which is fake). And also states it is impossible to have a very high preference in all 4 MBTI dimensions (E-I, S-N, F-N, P-J) (in both complete and reducted PJ and IE relations). This can be best explained by an example. Strong preference for intuition, thinking and perceveing leads to:
    SN: Ne+Ni>>Se+Si
    TF: Te+Ti>>Fe+Fi
    We can re-write this as:
    SN: Ne(very high)+Ni(very high)>>Se(very low)+Si(very low)
    TF: Te(very high)+Ti(very high)>>Fe(very low)+Fi(very low)
    However, when we get to the P-J relation:
    JP: Ne+Ti<Ni+Te
    Which re-writes as:
    PJ: Ne(very high)+Ti(very high)<Ni(very low)+Te(very low) [impossible]
    In the complete version, there are very high and very low in the two sides of the expression, which corresponds to open possibilities (since we didnt determinated what exactly is very high or very low, which opens to variations) and the most likely possibility to be non-preference in the PJ axis. But there we get to the point, continuing in the example, a strong relation in the NS and FT dimension should cause a not so strong preference in the JP and IE axis, due to this. Repeating the same example:
    SN: Ne(very high)+Ni(very high)>>Se(very low)+Si(very low)
    TF: Te(very high)+Ti(very high)>>Fe(very low)+Fi(very low)
    Considering these preferences, we have on the JP and EI dimensions:
    JP: Te(very high)+Fe(very low)+Ni(very high)+Si(very low)<=>Ti(very high)+Fi(very low)+Se(very low)+Ne(very high)
    EI: Te(very high)+Fe(very low)+Se(very low)+Ne(very high)<=>Ti(very high)+Fi(very low)+Si(very low)+Ni(very high)
    In other words, the strong preference for Intuition and Thinking should prevent strong preference in the EI and JP axis (which is a false conclusion). We could start with EI equation and we would arrive that it would prevent other equations to get a higher preference.
    This weakness may seem to strike the whole model and I thought that on the beggining. But there is one mistake on the "very high" or "very low" approach. This whole theory works towards converting any cognitive function stack into a type result (dichotomy result), however there is the back/reverse operation, which is converting a type result into a cognitive function stack (thanks to @noname3788 to making me spot that and to point its development). As I said before, all possible cognitive function stacks count as 40320, when all possible type results, including the possibility to have Xs (XNFP, INXP, IXXX, etc..), are 81, so there is a loss of information while converting a type result to cognitive function stack (and that leads to some innaccuracys). The equations used for that are:
    By analysing these equations above, it is possible to notice that its possible to only one cognitive function to reach the maximum value (for example, for INTJ only Ni is at a maximum value). The "very high" values are different than each other. So, when we reach to a relation llike this
    SN: Ne(very high)+Ni(very high)>>Se(very low)+Si(very low)
    TF: Te(very high)+Ti(very high)>>Fe(very low)+Fi(very low)
    PJ: Ne(very high)+Ti(very high)<Ni(very low)+Te(very low) [impossible]
    The PJ equation is actually possible since these very low are different and only one of them can be near zero or near maximum (and some of them wont get quite low). For INTP with preferences all close to 100%, Si "very low", Se "very low" and Fi "very low" are higher than Fe "very low", where as for ENTP close to 100%, Se, Fe and Fi "very low" are higher than Si very low. So, throught this points of view, its possible to know that its not possible to have a "very high-->near maximum" and "very low-->near zero" on all cognitive functions, so this weakness is only potential one. I had managed to simulate Te=Ti=Ne=Ni>>Fe=Fi=Se=Si function stack (heavy preference for N and T) on keys2cognition test, however, by analyising my answers I realized that they ignored the I-E and P-J dimensions,and by the line I used to do that ENTP, INTP, INTJ and ENTJ types had all the same answers (because I was ignoring P-J and E-I dimensions).

    And, as a final message, it took me a good while to think of this and write this (it was fun and mind changing), so, please, comment so the topic doesnt easily die!
    Last edited by Vendrah; 10-31-2019 at 01:33 AM.

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