Proactive Perception & Reactive Perception
To explain these operations in more detail I’ll begin first with perception, as it cycles from extroversion to introversion. As I mentioned earlier in this chapter, the process of perception is preoccupied with the synthesis of incoming information with pre-existing information. The feedback loop begins with the intake of information, which is always done by the proactive perception process.
The seeking-out of information existing outside of the self – the outer world – must necessarily be done by the proactive process which abandons the subject for its magnetic attraction to the object. I will hereafter refer to this proactive perception as the Explorer process.
Inversely, the role of the reactive or subjective perception process is to seek information within the self; to delve into memory and reference pre-existing perceptions/worldviews – as it is incapable of going outward for its information: it must delve inward. I refer to this process as the Worldview process as it supplies a body of knowledge – a tapestry to draw from – for the navigation of the explorer process and the calculation of the judgment processes.
Yet I must also make a differentiation between this process and the phenomenon of “memory”. It would not be correct to directly correlate the two, as memory exists as a physical entity of the brain’s physiology, not as a function. The Worldview process is one which recollects from this memory, but the entirety of it is not available to this process at any given time. It is more akin to a librarian than to the library. The manner in which it archives the information and recalls it differs between each of the two worldview processes, but this is the essential role of both worldview functions.
However, while the explorer process must seek outward, the psyche makes no distinction between the fantasy generated by our psyche – our proxy of reality – and reality itself as it may appear outside of human perception. Thus, in the literal sense, even the exploration of Pe is confined to the mental landscape of the person and will explore the information available within this mental terrain.
The diagram above is a general representation of the operation of the perception oscillation which may help to illustrate. At the centerpoint we have the explorer process, and on the left hemisphere we have objective reality. On the right hemisphere we have the internal world of the worldview process. In other words, the entire expanse of “the world” that the explorer process can see is composed of both the outer world and the worldview. What forms “reality” to our mental sight is never just the retina’s present information. The explorer process can glance at memory just as it glances at reality and memory is also treated as a sort of existing phenomenon.
Here the dotted lines to the left represent the explorer process seeking-out into objective reality. With each projection of the explorer process, the worldview process will respond and send back an echo – so to speak – seen here by the dashed line, according to what the data taken in associates to within pre-existing information. An echo from the worldview process will in some cases trigger the explorer process to direct its attention toward that echo.
This is because the moment the echo reaches the explorer process it becomes, in a metaphorical sense, a visible part of its environment. It is as if suddenly a new object appeared within your line of sight; impulsively your gaze will be drawn to it and seek to see it with more clarity, although this object may not be made out of color and shape but out of words or intangible impressions. The explorer process will seek to explore parts of the worldview’s tapestry to bring to mind a fuller image of reality as a conglomerate of the present and past information.
As this process transpires new memories are also being created and expanding the worldview’s tapestry, according to the overall mental experience that was generated by the perceptive processes and judgment processes collaborating. The manner in which these happenings are stored as memories, or rather how they’re interrelated, reflects the way in which the two perceptive processes brought them forth into awareness. Hence a very clear imprint of our cognitive functions is left in our memories, as they’re encoded in a manner that aligns with them, even though our memory itself is a separate phenomenon from cognitive type.
This snippet has been imported from Cognitive Type, with the author’s permission. We hope you enjoy!