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Typology

Jump to the following topics:

  1. What is typology?
  2. Jung designated various categories. 
  3. The benefits from typology.   
  4. Techniques for exploring our type.


What is typology? It is a system of classifying people into various "types," to gain a greater understanding of their personality and behavior.


Jung designated various categories.

  1. There are four categories: thinking, sensation, feeling, and intuition.
    • The "thinking" type. In typology, "thinking" is the use of rational analysis as a way to understand. (The "thinking" type corresponds to the "self-talk" of archetypal field-work.)
      • The thinking mode is effective in circumstances which require the use of logic and mathematics.
      • The thinking mode is ineffective if we employ it at times when we could be using the other modes of typology. For example:
        • We are cold and insensitive instead of responding with human "feeling."
        • We use ivory-tower speculations and rationalizations when we could respond more appropriately in the physical realities of the "sensation" mode.
        • We are legalistic when "intuition" would grant a better understanding and guidance.

    • The "feeling" type. The traditional definition differs from mine; I consider feelings to be one mode by which intuition relays information to us, whereas "feeling" in typology refers to emotions and impulsiveness -- and there is a separate typology category for "intuition." (The traditional definition of the "feeling" type corresponds to the "energy toning" of archetypal field-work.)
      • The feeling mode is effective in circumstances which require emotional expression and warmth.
      • The feeling mode is ineffective if we employ it at times when we could be using the other modes of typology. For example:
        • We react irrationally in decisions which require the intellectual scrutiny of "thinking."
        • We "follow our feelings" even when they contradict obvious material reality (as presented by the physicality of "sensations").
        • We permit our emotional drives to override contradicting signals from our intuition.

    • The "sensation" type. This type of person lives in a world of physical reality, the five senses, practical results, and the tangible and literal. (The "sensation" type corresponds to the "as-if principle" of archetypal field-work; both deal with the physical world.)
      • The sensation mode is effective when we are dealing with "real life," e.g., cleaning our home, planning events, enjoying our dinner.
      • The sensation mode is ineffective if we employ it at times when we could be using the other modes of typology. For example:
        • We can deal only in superficial appearances; thus we are weak in abstract "thinking" and ambiguity.
        • We become so engrossed in the form and structure of our creations that we don't even know whether our "feelings" like what we are creating.
        • We act according the rule-book, even when when our "intuition" is telling us something different.

    • The "intuitive" type. In typology, the intuitive person responds to hunches and "vibes." (The "intuitive" type corresponds to the intuition and "directed imagination" of archetypal field-work.)
      • The intuitive mode is effective when we are dealing with creativity, and with information which is not available by other means.
      • The intuitive mode is ineffective if we employ it at times when we could be using the other modes of typology. For example:
        • We replace substantive "thinking" with imagination and dreaminess.
        • We substitute our vital "feelings" with transcendent sensitivities which are disconnected from our personal human responses.
        • We deny the down-to-earth facts of the sensation mode.

  2. There are two associated modes of being: introverted or extraverted. Thus, in typology, we have eight categories:
    • The "thinking" type.
      • The extraverted thinker. For example, a college lecturer
      • The introverted thinker. For example, a philosopher.
    • The "feeling" type.
      • The extraverted feeler. For example, a hostess.
      • The introverted feeler. For example, a musician.
    • The "sensation" type.
      • The extraverted sensate. For example, an athlete
      • The introverted sensate. For example, a wine connoisseur.
    • The "intuitive" type.
      • The extraverted intuitive. For example, a visionary preacher.
      • The introverted intuitive. For example, a novelist.


The benefits from typology. Typology helps us to recognize our innate strengths, weaknesses, and other characteristics (and the overall "blueprint" of our life). Thus, we can capitalize on our advantages; for example, if we know that we are of the "sensate" type, we can predict that we might be more talented and successful in a job which allows for physical activity. However, we do not have to view our type as a fatalistic limitation. We cannot be "all things" anyway; our type is simply a focus which directs us toward particular experiences by which we develop particular qualities. In the long run, perhaps we do undergo all archetypal situations -- through a process of reincarnation which lets us spend an entire lifetime as one type of person at a time.


Techniques for exploring our type.

  1. Archetypal field-work. We can use field-work to enhance our type, or to enhance the other types (because we need to use them all occasionally).
    • Self-talk. (For the "thinking" type.) For example: "I am intelligent." "I enjoy using my intellect to analyze facts." "I like to learn new facts." "I like to organize facts into usable information."
    • Directed imagination. (For the "thinking" type.) We can visualize ourselves being successful and happy in intellectual study.
    • Energy toning. (For the "thinking" type.) We can generate the energy tones of alertness, brightness, emotional calm, etc.
    • The "as if" principle. (For the "thinking" type.) We can act as if we already have the quality of intellectual acuity.
  2. We can determine our type. We might be able to ascertain our type simply by reading the descriptions above; for more help in this matter, we can take a psychological test such as the Myer-Briggs or Grey-Wheelwright. For example, I am an "introverted intuitive."  
  3. We can develop the other modes within us. As explained in the list of types, each mode is effective in particular circumstances, but it is ineffective in other circumstances. We need to be able to shift into the mode which is appropriate for a situation. The modes are related in various ways:
    • Opposites. As we use and enhance our primary type, the most-neglected type is the opposite of that one; the opposites are "thinking and feeling," and "sensation and intuition." Therefore, if we are primarily a "thinking" type of person, our capacity for "feeling" is least-developed; i.e., it is in our shadow. We often choose friends whose type is the opposite of ours; for example, a thinking-type person is frequently attracted to a feeling-type person -- in an act of projection and in an instinctive desire to fill in our weak area.
    • Combinations. Along with our primary type, we might also tend to use one or two other types (and we generally ignore one or two types). We can create an illustration of our two preferences:
      • Draw a cross, using two perpendicular lines.
      • At one end of the horizontal line, write "thinking"; at the opposite end, write "feeling."
      • At one end of the vertical line, write "sensation"; at the opposite end, write "intuition."
      • In the four quadrants which were created by the lines of the cross, select the quadrant which expresses your characteristics: thinking/sensation, sensation/feeling, feeling/intuitive, or intuitive/thinking.

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