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Animal
Participant
  • Type: SeFi
  • Development: lll-
  • Attitude: Unseelie

@auburn   After sleeping a little, I just wanted to comment on a few things..

It’s not as universally appealing as it may sound. Perhaps it’s appealing in the sense of it being captivating, but myths are like that anyway. I enjoy Fi Disney myths a lot, but it isn’t “me” and it doesn’t snare my soul. I think, beyond entertainment and fascination, many people don’t fee the Fe myth at their core or as a root motivation in life. We have to distinguish fascination from the above.

I find Fi disney incredibly boring and always did, even as a child. I need to see real faces. Cartoons put me right off.  And the stories are not that compelling either. “Wanderlust” and Disney stories never struck me as ‘realistic’ or touching on anything that truly matters.  For instance let’s take Beauty and the Beast.  I’m a beast, and I attract beautiful men.  Disney always assumes the woman is the princess while men strive to chase them. The message is: if you’re a man, work on yourself. If you’re a woman, be beautiful and accept any man who wants to love you. Totally unrealistic, uncompelling, and flat.

I think you’re framing my “growth away from Pe” as – part of my trauma and reaction to it, which took me “away from my natural self.”  The thing is, Disney, to ME, has always felt unnatural. As an 8 year old I read Les Miserables, all 4000 pages.  I resonated with Eponine and started taking singing lessons so I could play her on Broadway.  I also started reading Hermann Hesse, which is about the self-improvement spiritual journey – by the time I was 10. My other favorite musicals were Phantom of the Opera and Miss Saigon – deeply personal stories with a strong emotional message.

At that point in my life there was no big tragedy. Yes I’d been jealous of my brother when he was born and I was 2.5, but that is expected at that age.  Overall, I had a loving, inspiring, capable, brilliant family, despite the tensions I brought up – and I only brought them up because I was analyzing the dark side of things, however minor it may be. And that’s what makes me “me.” I’m always looking at the hidden underbelly of things.  A character trait all my life – is that I want my demons to come out of the closet and dance with my angels.  But this doesn’t mean that I had some “tragedy” growing up that forced me to change. Not until I was 16.

You could say that my young foray into the music & theater industry was a tragedy, because there was so much crude competition. So perhaps that contributed to my intensity as a teenager. But when I was 8, resonating with Les Mis & Miss Saigon because nothing else on this Earth touched the intensity of my own inner experience, and offered stories of redemption, humanity, and passion – then it’s only fair to say that this is ‘who I am’ and it is ‘natural.’

No one else in my family has the kind of deep, intense emotions that I do, as such a driving theme in their life. (Note: I’m not saying that I’m more deep overall, nor am I claiming that my emotions are ‘more important’ than the next person, it’s just something that I’ve focused on and been compelled by.)

This makes sense in enneagram (type 4).  And part of four is masochism – finding the beauty in pain and suffering.  There is an ’emotional gluttony’ – a sense that the rest of the world is too grey and mundane, whereas the  world of emotion and passion is more palatable. And they are often seeking experiences, whether fantastic or real, to escalate that emotional drama.

My sense of you is that you’ve done a lot of self-work. But even that has implications to it, doesn’t it? Self-work doesn’t need to be done, if one is being their most natural self. Almost all of the 3-4 function conscious individuals we’ve seen have had careers or lives defined by working on their weaknesses. Patching up their Achille’s heels. And they’re almost all “paradoxes” in the sense that they have conflicting traits.

In enneagram, the choice to do ‘self work’ is not about being a certain type; it’s assumed that those who are spiritually enlightened, awake, or humane, will want to do self work – and all types have a path to get there: which makes sense based on my lived experience. It seems insane for any typology to claim that sacrifice and self-work is the domain of “Type X” whereas other types who want to do self work are not living as their natural selves. It’s not true to real experience.

Fe leads may be more likely to focus on self-improvement themes in books, or to teach it directly – but this doesn’t mean they necessarily embody their lessons. Having grown up with two psychiatrists,  one of which is NiFe – and also a life coach who is FeNi – I know firsthand that it’s a lot easier to write books about self-improvement and push one’s clients to great heights, than it is to actually overcome your own trials.  Fe leads may have an easy time waxing eloquent about self-improvement for others, and may serve as models for this; but in my real lived experience, I have not seen that they have any actual advantage over any other type, in the realm of solving their own realest, deepest problems, no matter how much they want to. In that, they are just as disadvantaged as any other type. Absolutely everyone that wants REAL improvement, has to change away from their ‘natural’ self, in order to attain it. You can’t be a 50 year old infant, even as a Fe lead.

Compared to Fe leads, I prefer to show my ideas in a more anecdotal way, inspiring the readers through the trials and tribulations of the characters, and offering solutions and philosophies that might awaken them. As a Se lead, I’m a doer not a conceptualizer, so showing actions (Se) with symbolic meaning behind them (Fi-Ni) and solutions (Te) is how I communicate best.

I’ve gotten feedback that by reading the self-improvement methods embedded in my books, others have been able to take steps to improve their problems or explore new parts of themselves which allowed growth. To me, this is the ideal outcome of others reading my work.  Likewise, when singing through my whisper, an artist who was going blind had contacted me saying my work inspired her to take further steps. I also inspired several other artists to start singing when they’d been afraid to do so; one of which is among my favorite artists now. I love this inspiration-domino effect. They all said something similar: “If you can sing through your whisper, then what’s stopping ME from doing what I love?”

And I see this as very “natural” and also Se.  Se “volition” can inspire people in the sense that I don’t need to sit there and make a list of what to do to be better, but rather, I embody my own philosophy; actually live it out.  I do something, chase something with fanatic obsessive passion, then others say “I wanna do what she is doing.”  I create an SF intense aesthetic around it, which draws people in to my world.  So how I do it, is very true to myself, rather than emulating an Fe type.

The problem is equating sacrifice and self improvement to one type. Maybe you could say Je in the sense that — like you said in the video – when Je’s solution fails, it tries another. And yes, all the Fe people I know have constant verbal anecdotes about how to self improve, which I don’t, so I understand how that’s a focus for them, to do it in that particular manner.

Still, I have never seen one “type” in CT or in enneagram, who  has a monopoly on self work, or rising from the ashes.  This seems to come from character depth,  tragedy & trauma, and other factors.  In enneagram, the idea  that you might ‘want to improve your life’ or understand your own patterns to be better, is encouraged as something that all types are equally capable of doing. But in CT, it’s almost as though people who want to self improve are “not being true to themselves” unless they happen to be Fe leads? And this seems wrong to me, unrealistic…

The question is- how does each  specific type self-improve?

Self-work doesn’t need to be done, if one is being their most natural self.

Basically this is what I fundamentally disagree with. Is it really natural to just sit on your hands and allow others to wipe your ass?  Maybe it’s my bias, but I don’t have much interest in people who have no will to become something more. It brings the image of a 45 year old man sucking a mommy’s tit. It’s not “natural” to be a middle aged infant – and people are only like that because of depression and serious personal problems.  It is much more natural to want to improve and have agency, whatever that means to each person.  Je is a path toward agency in the world ‘out there,’ but Ji types for example can have a lot of agency in coming up with complex internal structures.  A Je type without Ji will get shit done, but overlook moral integrity, consistency and meaning. They can ‘do’ but, for what?  Thus, it’s just as natural for them to want to change to something ‘more than their natural self,’ as it is for any other type to want to incorporate other functions so they can become a full person.

Perhaps a 50 year old infant Je-lead is a tyrant bossing people around for no reason; perhaps a 50 year old infant Ji-lead is a starving ‘artist’ whose mom pays his bills.. perhaps Einstein could not remember to wear pants when he left his apartment, though he still did amazing things. 50 year old infants come in many forms, and it is natural to want to be a child forever, but it is also natural to realize this lifestyle is empty and unfulfilling, and thus experience a strong urge to get over yourself and grow up.

And this, perhaps, is the merit in Jung’s argument that the hero narrative is universal. Because it is universal for everyone to feel this conflict between being a child and growing up. There are rites of passage in many cultures, growing pains; this truly is universal.

 I wanted to primarily make note of how “we don’t all have an fe hero myth” and the structure of the myth that is most central to a lot of people isn’t the structure of the Fe template.

If it seems to you that it’s ‘unnatural’ for some people to feel drawn to overcome their own weaknesses in order to be something more, unless they are Fe, then maybe Fe is not being conceptualized properly?  Because I cannot conceive of any universe in which one type has a monopoly on self-improvement.  Villains are often the tyrants & tricksters that embody one function fully, like a 50 year old infant, whereas heroes are the ones that face their shadow and incorporate something more.

  • This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by Animal.
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  • This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by Animal.
  • This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by Animal.
  • This reply was modified 1 year, 7 months ago by Animal.
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