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Dr. John Beebe
talks about

Okay, if you don't learn something new in this section, I'll give you all your money back.

For people who are still noodling around with the letters and stalling their decision of choosing their best-fit type, here's a reason to get on with it.  This area of study plunges one into the deepest exploration of Type imaginable -- but you can't mine it fully until you "own" a Type code!

Let's begin with the basics:  what's an archetype, and what does it to have to do with your personality?  Here is Carl Jung's complicated explanation:

The concept of the archetype, which is an indispensable correlate to the idea of the collective unconscious, indicates the existence of definite forms in the psyche which seem to be present always and everywhere. Mythological research calls them "motifs"; in the psychology of primitives they correspond to Levy-Bruhl's concept of "representations collectives," and in the field of comparative religion they have been defined by Hubert and Mauss as "categories of the imagination." Adolf Bastian long ago called them "elementary" or "primordial thoughts." From these references, it should be clear enough that my idea of the archetype -- literally a pre-existent form -- does not stand alone, but is something that is recognized and named in other fields of knowledge.

My thesis, then, is as follows: In addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a thoroughly personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche (even if we tack on the personal unconscious as an appendix), there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal, and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually, but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain psychic contents.

Archetypes are thus the powerful symbolic images that inform our view of heroes, wise men, mothers, and villains, among others. We encounter them in many aspects of our daily lives -- in art, religion, movies, and even cartoons! The bad guy invariably dresses in black; the good guy in white (and he is always strong and kind). Mothers are nurturing, gentle, and protective. The wise man is often portrayed as a white-haired old man with a frail body and peaceful demeanor. These images are recognizable by most of us, and there are strong similarities in these symbols even from one culture to the next.  They are so pervasive that archetypes are anchored in our brain structure and occupy the "middle ground" between mind and matter.  Archetypes are what provide the deep structure for human motivation and meaning. Whenever archetypes are encountered in art, literature, sacred texts, and advertising—or in individuals or groups—they evoke emotional resonance and become the unconscious frameworks that determine how and why people think and react.  Pretty powerful stuff, huh?

Let me preface what I write next by explaining that I personally have never embraced archetypes.  They just didn't do anything for me.  I slogged dutifully through Clarissa Pinkola Este's Women Who Run with the Wolves, and while I found some of it very moving, overall I just couldn't relate to it all that much.  It was simply lost on me.  I wrote it off as something inaccessible -- something other types (especially INFPs) got into, but not me.  Ho hum.  Next!

It turns out I'm not alone.  Anne Singer Harris has this to say about them:

Archetypes tend to shift shape and flow into each other... This is because archetypes are content-free, patterned tendencies of thought; their qualities overlap, they are not hierarchical, and their symbolic expression is complexly layered.  This is a messy and unpredictable realm in which to wander, and its shiftiness annoys people who like to call a spade a spade and never a shovel.  ...To tolerate these conditions, a person must tolerate ambiguity.

...which I confess is not my favorite thing, especially given my interaction style...

Then Dr. Linda Berens introduced me to the John Beebe* model, and showed me how to "map" archetypes to the Type model.


I still don't understand archetypes all that well, but I'm playing catch-up as fast as I can.  The effort seems worth it now.

To access Dr. Beebe's model, you have to update any old-fashioned thinking you harbor about Type.  Type of the "old school" scenario claims people really only access their dominant function and a little bit of their auxiliary.  The code is notated thus:  INFJ.  That notation implies introverted N and extraverted F are about the only things you've got going for you, since those are the only letters you see. 

I hope to turn that concept on its ear for you.

Dr. Beebe basically "doubled" Jung's personality functions by adding the Shadow (unacceptable) aspects of each function.  So "New School" Type thinking claims that we all possess and actively use all eight of the type functions.  They're all available in each person's personality toolbox.  However, we utilize them in vastly different ways and for vastly different purposes.  My extraverted Feeling stapler is another person's extraverted Feeling ice-pick, if you follow the metaphor.

Now let's revisit that Type code:  INFJ.  That code implies the following hierarchy of functions (per the alternating function method I embrace): Ni Fe Ti Se Ne Fi Te Si.  That list displays my preferred order of functions.  And, if you read the section on Individuation, you know these functions develop more fully throughout our lives as we mature  (though Dr. Beebe says the functions don't necessarily individuate sequentially**).

Here's a new wrinkle:  the first four functions listed above are what Dr. John Beebe calls "ego-syntonic."  That means when we access these functions, we are in "synch" with them.  They feel comfortable, they come naturally to us, and we feel "normal" when we use them.  When we access them, our "ego" says, "Yep, that's me."

What about those last four functions?

Dr. Beebe calls those functions "ego-dystonic."  That means those functions do not come as easily or naturally to us, and we do not feel "normal" when we use them -- in fact, we feel like we're alien, not ourselves.  When we access them, our ego says, "Who was that?  That doesn't feel right.  That's not like me!"

As a result, we naturally tend to be more deft and graceful at using our first four functions than our last four functions.

To take this understanding a step further, we may automatically dislike or reject persons who prefer to use our "ego-dystonic" functions.  This results in the ever-popular "personality conflict," without anyone ever doing something provocative.  (Sometimes I wonder why God "hard-wired" us for conflict this way, unless it's his master plan for forcing us all to move out of our comfort zones and learn adapting skills.)

It's useful to note here that the definition of "Type opposite" comes up for grabs with this model.  The tendency has been for us to suppose that the opposite of an INFJ is an ESTP because the codes have no letters in common.  But the fact is that both codes contain identical preferences for the first four functions, albeit in opposite order.  For an INFJ: Ni Fe Ti Se, and for an ESTP: Se Ti Fe Ni.  See?  Same codes, opposite orders.  So it's common to see INFJs and ESTPs attracted to one another and getting along famously (many of them married!).  According to Dr. John Beebe, it is most difficult for people of the same primary function but opposite attitude to get along, and the greatest personal conflicts arise between persons of opposite genders who have the same dominant function but paired with opposite attitudes.  Again for an INFJ: Ni Fe Ti Se, and now for NFPs: Ne Fi Te Si -- no matches anywhere!  Also with STJs: Si Te Fi Ne -- the same mismatching.  

Taking this natural pattern of hostility to its obvious extreme could account for war.  Jung believed that aggression on a collective level (war) could result from failure to take responsibility for aggression on a personal level by persons who refuse to recognize their own Shadow aspects.  (The Shadow is "the thing a person has no wish to be.")  So when we attack and blame another person for carrying our Shadow -- for being different, and for manifesting our ego-dystonic functions -- we see that person (or nation) as the cause of all our ills and disappointments.  If they in turn do the same, we begin attacking each other in the name of making the world better, and a downward spiral is set in motion.

Let's do our part to reverse that trend and start by revisiting Type codes again:  INFJ.  Instead of representing Type via this succinct code, or with a litany of letters (Ni Fe Ti Se Ne Fi Te Si), the Type code is sometimes displayed as a hierarchy:

So those are most of the ways we typically see Type represented.  

In contrast, Dr. Beebe's model is better likened to Eric Berne's Transactional Analysis.  Do you remember that pop psychology movement?  This diagram might ring a bell:

Now let me show you those same ego states, but mapped to an INFJ's favorite functions:

This mapping shows you what "archetypal role" an INFJ's preferred three functions play in the personality.  When we access these functions, we simultaneously invoke the archetypal role associated with that function, and speak from that place.

Now you could stop right here and you'd already have a whole new layer of richness added to the Type model.  But let's add more dimension.

Eric Berne's model got interesting when it was used to analyze interactions between two people (thus the term "transactional analysis").  To show you what that might look like related to Type, I will add a mapping of an ENTP's favorite three functions and show you how communication transacts between an ENTP and an INFJ.

The function addressing the other person becomes a "heat-seeking missile," searching out its match in the other person's hierarchy.  So an INFJ's Fe seeks out the matching Fe of an ENTP, and invokes its associated role.  In the following transaction, the INFJ's Fe "Parent" speaks to the ENTP's Fe "Child."  And, for a different transaction, the ENTP's Ti "Parent" speaks to the INFJ's Ti "Child."  Watch how the functions hone in on each other, but the role the function plays in the personality changes.

As you may recall from Transactional Analysis, the most successful communications were always Adult-to-Adult, or communications that mapped straight across, not at an angle.  Observing the direction of the arrows in the above diagram gives you a hint that either person might feel "talked down to" in each exchange.  So this gives you an inkling of how a perfectly rational interaction might easily go off the rails.

Once you grasp this simplified pattern, let's move on to more complicated material.  Get ready to dive really deep!  It's time to introduce Beebe's complex "mapping."

The first four (ego-syntonic) functions will appear on crossed axes thus:

So what's the purpose of this mapping?  Well, by logical extension it should rearrange your thinking about how the functions operate.  The hierarchy is gone, and it's easy to "slide" back and forth on an axis.  Each function that is on the same axis operates in "tandem," meaning they work together -- with one function taking primacy and the second function working in the background (think bicycle wheels).

Let's make this relevant by showing it associated with preferences for INFJ:

In this model, the vertical axis operates as the "spine" of the personality.  Now here is a very important concept to grasp:  while the dominant function is at the top of the axis, notice how the "inferior" function supports it.  The inferior function suddenly snaps into view as the "anchor" of the personality, and this function cradles many of the personality's aspirations.  Rather than operating as a repository of shame and inadequacy (as it is usually portrayed), it is re-cast as a source of pride and inspiration.  The so-called "inferior" function now becomes a storehouse of purpose and represents the personality's highest value.  (It may take you some time to take that notion in, especially if you've learned to "demonize" your inferior function.)

The horizontal axis displays what are called the "arms" of the personality.  As with the vertical axis, the auxiliary and tertiary functions also operate in tandem, and together these four functions round out our preferred personality functions.

The vertical axis is an "irrational" axis, since both functions are perceiving ones; and the horizontal function is a "rational" axis, since both functions are judging ones.  (Note:  "rational" means that it is a function under conscious control, while "irrational" means the function is not.  We may control our judging functions, but it is nearly impossible to control our perceiving functions.  Example: what's that old mind trick about "Don't think about elephants!"?)

To continue building the INFJ model, in like fashion, the remaining four (ego-dystonic) functions will be positioned on axes thus:

So there's a whole new way of mapping for you to take in -- with no hierarchies, no particular order, and a whole new way of expressing Type.  Pretty different, hunh?

These last four functions are the antithesis of the first four functions, and may be regarded as manifesting your Shadow.  If the first quaternity is composed of all the behaviors you most admire, then the Shadow quaternity includes all the qualities you loathe and repudiate.  Shadow characteristics are highly emotional with a possessive quality.  (You don't have the Shadow; the Shadow has you.)  The Shadow functions all serve power, aggression, and excitement.  Shadow is mostly unconscious, and you either project it onto others or disown it ("I'm not myself right now").  It may also make itself known through feelings of self-doubt.  The only way you can cope with the Shadow is to accept this negative side of yourself and forfeit any attempts to appear faultless.

Now what about this archetype business I brought up in the beginning?

I haven't forgotten it, but this material is so radical and rich that you may experience overload.  If you push ahead, you may wish to revisit this section again later, because it's just too overwhelming to take in with one reading.  

I will now take this new representation of crossed axes and correlate it to Dr. Beebe's archetypal model.  Rather than using the terms "dominant," "auxiliary," etc., we replace these terms with the names of specific archetypes that characterize the behaviors associated with their respective positions.  (Note that the Dominant and Auxiliary names of archetypes are in English because they are the most conscious functions, while the remaining two are Latinized because they are relatively unconscious.)  All the functions are "trainable" except the inferior function, which resists conscious control and must be approached indirectly. 

And so on for the ego-dystonic axes:

This is the model in its "pure" form as it relates to every type code.

Now let's associate these archetypes to the personality of an INFJ.  (Notice how I will erect the ego-dystonic axes behind the ego-syntonic axes -- to represent its Shadow presence.)  This is the preferred representation of the Type code using the Beebe model (as opposed to the representations I listed off at the beginning of this essay).

Voila! a whole new way of looking at the Psychological Type code.  The quaternity in front is ego-syntonic, and the quaternity in back is ego-dystonic, but all eight functions are accessible.  What makes each personality type representation unique is defining which functions are associated with which archetypes.

So let's dig deeper into understanding these archetypal associations, shall we?  (You might wish to make some notes and jot down some thoughts for yourself.  If possible, take your time and treat this like a "workbook" as you go through the material.  Otherwise you'll skip relating it to yourself and risk this powerful material getting mentally filed as unremarkable blather.)

Hero/Heroine:  introverted iNtuition for the INFJ
What does this mean?  For an INFJ, the function of Ni acts as the hero.  It's how we "save the day."  Ni is the function that is our "Ego Achiever," and is the main protagonist in our journey through life.  It's helpful if you're familiar with Joseph Campbell and his research into "The Hero's Journey."  The Hero represents the aspect of our personality with which we meet the expectations of our parents or for socially recognized achievement.

Now it's your turn.  Can you think of ways your Ni has been "heroic" or saved the day?  Once you do, you have begun connecting your Type to your archetype.

Good Parent:  extraverted Feeling for the INFJ
What does this mean?  For an INFJ, the function of Fe acts as the "Good Parent," also known as the wise old man or woman.  This is how you take care of others.  The good parent fosters, enables, and gives permission to do things.  It may nudge you toward what is best for you rather than what you want.  Caring is frequently expressed through this archetype in a helpful voice of wisdom and experience, and you may rely on the Good Parent's support under all conditions.  

Now your turn.  Ask yourself how you would care for a person in deep distress.  Does an extraverted Feeling choice come to mind?  If it does, you have just connected your auxiliary function to an archetypal expression.

Puer/Puella (child):  introverted Thinking for the INFJ
What does this mean?  For an INFJ, the function of Ti is a reservoir of creativity known as the eternal child.  It also represents spirituality, youthful enthusiasm, and new beginnings.  On the downside, this Child never grows up, doesn't have its feet on the ground, can't hang onto a job or relationship, and repeatedly crashes as a result of flying too high.  It may express itself through new beginnings, and so is the enemy of a settled life.  

I know one way INFJs sometimes experience Ti is through trying to find precisely the right word to express something (oh the hours I've wasted getting an email "just right"!).  I also derive endless enjoyment from applying the type model.  In this regard, Dr. John Beebe claims that the Tertiary function can have narcissistic undertones -- for instance, when people use tertiary introverted thinking narcissistically, it is usually when one word or idea or interpretation that it has come up with begins to dominate one's way of understanding, so that one can no longer take new or contradictory ideas in.  He posits that fixating on one relatively valid idea which needs to be further unpacked is typical of introverted thinking in the third position, and one could even go so far as to call that a narcissistic attachment to that one idea, or that way of using introverted thinking, at the expense of a more differentiated and evolving thinking, which is more truly open to other ideas.  (The term "closed-minded" springs to mind.)

Your turn again.  Where does your creativity come from?  When you "shake up" your life and start something new, can you identify Ti as the initiator of it?  Do you ever struggle to find just the "right word"?  Are you overly attached to any single word/idea/model/interpretation?  What are you closed-minded about?  (Warning:  religious fanatacism can emanate from this position.)

Anima/Animus: extraverted Sensing for the INFJ
What does this mean?  Paradigm shift alert!  It's important to recognize that Beebe radically departs from traditional Type theory in his representation of the inferior function.  This function gets lived as an individual's purpose in life; their inspiration, ideal, or "cause" that represents a person's highest value.  When operating in this position, the individual is inspired as if by a mythological muse.  In an INFJ's case, the normal goal of introverted iNtuition is to sense gestalts.  On the same axis, extraverted Sensing will prompt INFJs to express their iNtuition (or their sense of gestalts) in some kind of concrete fashion in the real world; to make some idea "real." 

What about you?  What "itch" does extraverted Sensing just have to scratch?  What kinds of "hands-on" activities are you attracted to?  What dreams are you compelled to make reality?  Are you the kind of person who isn't satisfied with talking, but are driven to accomplish?  If so, you have probably discovered your archetypal "anchor," and gotten in touch with the inspiration that drives your personality.

Now onto the second quaternity -- the ego-dystonic functions.  (Cue Twilight Zone theme music.)  We now move into the Shadow realm.

Fifth position Opposing Personality: extraverted iNtuition for the INFJ
What does this mean?  This is the shadow of the Hero, the "origin of obscure or stubborn refusals of life's challenges.  The Opposing Personality can be adversarial, passive-aggressive, suspicious, or avoidant."  It arises as a way to defend oneself, and sometimes impersonates our opposite gender.  This archetype is Dr. Beebe's unique invention, and he characterizes it as "the terrible twos," when we throw fierce and desperate temper tantrums.

What about you?  Do you negatively express extraverted iNtuition?  Sometimes I do.  I enjoy some forms of brainstorming, but in other situations I just want to scream "Stop it!"  It can quickly get on my nerves, and a whole LOT of opposing personality comes to the fore if I get too big a dose of it (especially when I'm focused on Time & Task!).

Sixth position Witch/Senex:  introverted Feeling for the INFJ
What does this mean?  This is the bad mother/father that criticizes, condemns, immobilizes, or demoralizes.  It finds fault with everyone, making everyone seem like fakes or untrustworthy.  It can be the basis of self-attacks commonly experienced in depression.  This archetype is anti-life, since it cripples soul and spirit.  The appearance of this function forces one to be creative, to outwit some challenge by finding a way around it.

What about you?  Do you react negatively to introverted Feeling?  I know I struggle with it.  This is a function that causes me a lot of problems (not least the fact that it's my husband's Tertiary).  While I desperately need it to sort out my values and to provide an internal compass, I also consider introverted Feeling "selfish," irrational, and unreasonable at times, better dismissed and ignored.

Seventh position Trickster:  extraverted Thinking for the INFJ
What does this mean?  This is the ambiguous shadow of the Puer/Puella.  It can lead you treacherously astray.  It fools and confuses people who encounter you, and its hallmark is to put other people in double binds.

And you?  How's your relationship with extraverted Thinking?  Boy is mine ever shaky!  (And it's my husband's Auxiliary!)  In my household, I am often trapping my husband with "tricky" double binds, probably as a response to his extraverted Thinking.  I often get emotionally upset and even cry when I am required to access this function.

Eighth position Demon/Daemon:  introverted Sensing for the INFJ
What does this mean?  "This is the most rejected aspect of personality, the source of evil in many people, and (more rarely) the deepest source of creative inspiration."  In a nutshell, for INFJs this is the biggest, ugliest achilles heel of them all.  It is the most deeply unconscious part of our personal unconscious.  It may show up as a destructive creativity that seems to delight in destroying the old while only occasionally creating something new.

Your turn.  How do you do with introverted Sensing?  I confess I'm still grappling with this, so don't think I have all the answers, but I'm notorious for skipping meals or sleeping irregular hours, which invariably catches up with me in some really awful way -- like an emotional outburst after my blood sugar hits a dangerously low level.  I confess that my house is usually a mess, and I'm out of touch with my physical body (PMS always takes me by completely surprise, as if it's the first time that ever happened to me). I also don't react well to some facts -- like when customer service cites fine print at me until I fly off the handle.  And I get extremely cranky when I can't recall something I think I should, or I recall it inaccurately.  Listening to anyone stroll down "memory lane" tends to leave me cold -- and when my mother recites "begats" around the family tree, I struggle to keep from screaming.  Usually when you are really "wiggy" is when your "Demonic" function is in play.  (I'm still struggling to identify it in INFJs -- feel free to write and tell me your observations!)  

So that's a quick and dirty orientation to archetypes as they map to the type model.  It's up to you to study yourself and your own situational behaviors to discover how they exhibit and play out in reality.

What's really exciting is to contemplate how the two functions that sit on the same axis work in tandem with each other.  For instance, I know it's possible for me to get caught in "analysis paralysis" if an event upsets me and I start shuttling back and forth on the Fe/Ti "arms" axis.  I visit the Fe function and think about the situation, and then I slide over to Ti and start tirelessly analyzing my feelings and what happened until the whole thing gets analyzed to death -- and then I slide back to Fe and start the process all over again.  Brain lock!  It's really awful to get trapped in this unproductive loop.  

By the same token, I see the interplay between my dominant and my inferior function on the axis "spine" as capturing the hallmark of who I am.  I've always tried to be a person of integrity, and when I have an inspiring vision I am simply compelled to bring it into reality.  This model captures that essence in a way that Type theory has never done for me before.

A radical thing to bear in mind here is that we speak from one of these eight archetypal positions at all times.  As John Beebe says, "All type is expressed through archetype; and all archetype is expressed through type."  So when we address someone, a couple of interesting things might happen.  First, the other person may not "hear" us, or will ask us to re-issue the communication through a function that is ego-syntonic to them, thus putting us on their "wavelength."  They may be insistent about getting us to "speak their language."  (Dr. Beebe likens this to using a "trump card" in a card game.)

The second alternative is that the other person will switch to match our function (and attitude).  When they do, they also switch into the archetypal position this function occupies in their hierarchy.  So when I address my INTJ husband with my extraverted Feeling (Good Parent), he too switches to extraverted Feeling (his Trickster).  Right out of the gate we're off to a rocky start.  And his introverted Feeling (Puer/Puella) triggers my introverted Feeling (Witch/Senex).  The diagram below shows a couple of possible interactions:


Relationships and interactions become a whole lot richer and juicier when you employ this model to investigate how you operate in the world.  

This new and unorthodox mapping can be difficult to get used to at first, especially if you're conversant and comfortable with the old model.  I urge you to spend some time thinking about it and applying it to yourself, because the rewards of working with it are enormous, as my husband and I will both attest.  It deepens the notion of Type to a rich level where you confront both the positive and negative aspects of your personality (and others'), and it can facilitate an exploration of how you "mix" with other personalities.  I promise that investigating and adopting this model is worth all the effort, and you will derive greater enjoyment from working with Type than you did before once you try it.  Let me know how you like it.  Good luck, and enjoy! 

concept & quotes taken from Living with Paradox, by Anne Singer Harris

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Now that you've taken a spin around the Beebe model, would you like to grapple with Dr. Linda Berens' variation of it?  It's here.

*John Beebe, M.D., is a Jungian analyst, editor of the San Francisco Jung Library Journal, co-editor of the Journal of Analytical Psychology, and an expert on Jung's psychological types.  While many people have become familiar with psychological types as a way of examining the differences between people, Dr. Beebe has been pioneering their use intrapsychically as a way to explore the depths of the psyche.  You can find an interview with him here.

**Dr. Beebe believes the processes develop more or less sequentially thus: 1, 2, 3, 7, 4, 5, 8, 6.

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