Explaining Ti to Fi types
I've recently come to a bit better understanding of the relationship between Ti and Fi, and I think I may be able to use it to help Ti make a little more sense to Fi-ers...so here we go:
As we already know, FeTi (used by xxTP and xxFJ) and TeFi (used by xxFP and xxTJ) represent two opposing (but equally valid!) ways of conceptualizing the nature of logic and ethics:
FeTi prompts us to deal with ethics and morality collectively, according to a more generalized standard that we can all agree to be bound by, while dealing with logic and impersonal ideas in a more individualized and subjective way, seeking only to find what makes sense logically to the individual.
TeFi prompts us to deal with logic and impersonal ideas collectively, according to a more generalized objective standard which we can all agree to use to quantify and measure impersonal ideas by the same method, while dealing with ethics according to an internalized and subjective standard, seeking only to find what feels right to the individual.
It's important to remember that Ti and Fi are both subjective, because they deal with an internal model as understood individually by the subject. Te and Fe are both objective, as they deal with external models as understood collectively by the larger group.
I've found that many disagreements I've had with TeFi types tend to come down to this:
1) I state an idea, theory or proposed framework for describing the logical relationships that make up a system, simply because it makes sense to me subjectively,
2) The TeFi type insists that I provide objective evidence and empirical backing for this idea before it can be taken seriously,
3) I get pissed because my ideas are being attacked.
I know that I am especially bad about #3, but it's only just recently occurred to me why: Ti types are attached to their logical frameworks in exactly the same way Fi types are attached to their personal values: When you attack them, you attack the user's very sense of identity.
What both sides need to recognize is that FeTi-ers constantly judge Fi ideas in Fe terms, and TeFi-ers constantly judge Ti ideas in Te terms, so each is fundamentally missing the point of the other's perspective.
This is the exchange I see again and again regarding F ideas:
1) An Fi type states his/her personal feelings regarding some sort of moral or ethical ideal because it makes sense to him/her subjectively,
2) An Fe type insists that this idea cannot be taken seriously until shown to be accurate according to popular opinion/objective consensus on ethics,
3) The Fi type gets pissed because his/her values are being attacked.
What we all need to recognize is that Ji (Fi and Ti, that is) is not looking for externalized or objective evidence, but seeks only to find a line of reasoning that makes sense internally for the individual in question.
Reread the first bolded section about the competing value systems. This is really where the vast majority of these disagreements come from.
If, right now, you're asking yourself: "But wait--how could it ever be reasonable to take collective logic/individualized ethics seriously? Logic is obviously something that should be understood personally, while ethics are obviously something that should be understood and agreed upon collectively!"
"But wait--how could it ever be reasonable to take collective ethics/individualized logic seriously? Ethics are obviously something that should be understood personally, while logic is obviously something that should be understood and agreed upon collectively!"
then you have just stumbled upon the fundamental difference between TeFi and FeTi.
Now, the real challenge is to begin accepting that neither of these approaches is fundamentally more correct than the other.
And that's incredibly hard to do, but it's the only place to start if we are ever to begin truly appreciating the value in each other's perspectives.
So if you are an FeTi type, recognize that even though considering ethics through a collective/communal perspective seems obviously rational to you, you are attacking an Fi user's sense of identity when you insist that he provide objective evidence for his Feeling ideas. As an Fi user, his Feeling is focused purely on finding what feels subjectively right to him--appeasing external consensus or providing objective evidence for it is completely beside the point.
Likewise, if you are a TeFi type, recognize that even though considering logic through a collective/communal perspective seems obviously, you are attacking a Ti user's sense of identity when you insist that he provide objective evidence for his Thinking ideas. As a Ti user, his Thinking is focused purely on finding what seems subjectively consistent to him--appeasing external consensus or providing objective evidence for it is completely beside the point.
There are a lot of people on this forum, and indeed everywhere in life, who have not even begun to consider that their preferred judgment outlook (TeFi or FeTi) is anything other than 100% Objectively Correct, end of story. Most people have no idea that there might be any validity in the opposing perspective, because most people are (naturally) very threatened by any challenge to their concepts of logic and ethics.
And this is okay! It's natural for the opposing perspective to turn our stomachs. It's impossible to avoid this gut reaction--but the central idea of typology is to allow us to recognize these biases in ourselves and begin to understand that what seems obviously rational to us is not any better (or worse) than what seems obviously rational to others.
Unfortunately I find that some people use typology as further justification for their own deluded arrogance--rather than, "Okay, now I see that my values are ultimately relative, and that other people can look at the world differently and there's nothing wrong with that", it becomes: "Oh, now I see why everyone who doesn't think like me is a total moron. Good thing I now know that [insert my type here] is the best!"
And I would really like it if we could start to undo that counterproductive mentality.
If you find yourself thinking, "Well that's stupid, anyone who sees logic as individualized and ethics as collective [or the other way around] is simply an idiot who doesn't understand how the real world works", then perhaps it's time to reevaluate your understanding.