Objective perspective on Jungian typology and MBTI

  • Published: 03-13-2014 Edited: 03-13-2014
  • If you read the chapters on categorization of type from Jung's Psychological Types here you see that the types are defined qualitatively, that is what quality a distinct type give you as an observer.

    Here is a quote from the definition of the "The Extraverted Feeling-Type":
    "In so far as feeling is, incontestably, a more obvious peculiarity of feminine psychology than thinking, the most pronounced feeling-types are also to be found among women. When extraverted feeling possesses the priority we speak of an extraverted feeling-type. Examples of this type that I can call to mind are, almost without exception, women. She is a woman who follows the guiding-line of her feeling. As the result of education her feeling has become developed into an adjusted function, subject to conscious control. Except in extreme cases, feeling has a personal character, in spite of the fact that the subjective factor may be already, to a large extent, repressed. The personality appears to be adjusted in relation to objective conditions. Her feelings correspond with objective situations and general values. Nowhere is this more clearly revealed than in the so-called 'love-choice'; the 'suitable' man is loved, not another one; he is suitable not so much because he fully accords with the fundamental character of the woman -- as a rule she is quite uninformed about this -- but because [p. 449] he meticulously corresponds in standing, age, capacity, height, and family respectability with every reasonable requirement."

    What Jung defines is identities related to type in his Psychological Types. The identity of self and others are maintained by the limbic system, if you have Organic Execution (*OE) it gets effortless to define things in qualitative language. So the definitions in Jungs Psychological Type are to be interpreted by the limbic system and the Organic Contexualization. (read more about limbic system here.)

    So if we look at the MBTI type 'ENTJ - The Executive' here.
    The Jungian correlates for this type is as follows:
    "Dominant: Extraverted Thinking
    Auxiliary: Introverted Intuition
    Tertiary: Extraverted Sensing
    Inferior: Introverted Feeling "

    So to validate that a MBTI type would correlate with these Jungian functions you would have to combine four qualitatively descriptions of types from Jungs theory and compare it to the description of the 'ENTJ - The Executive'. This is only possible qualitatively, because the MBTI profile is defined in qualitative language and Jungs definitions are also qualitative. This ultimately means that Jungs definitions are not verifiable and MBTI is not verifiable either. And to summarize this example, Jung's Psychological Types will never be verifiable because they are defined in qualitative language. Everything based on Jung's definitions will for this reasons never be verifiable either.

    For type to be verifiable it needs to be quantified, that means it is possible to define type in a deterministic way.