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Which of the following applies most to you? (ISTP's only)

  • Conservative Protestant

    Votes: 4 7.4%
  • Moderate Protestant

    Votes: 3 5.6%
  • Liberal Protestant

    Votes: 3 5.6%
  • Conservative Catholic

    Votes: 2 3.7%
  • Moderate Catholic

    Votes: 2 3.7%
  • Liberal Catholic

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Conservative Eastern Orthodox

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Moderate Eastern Orthodox

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Liberal Eastern Orthodox

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Conservative Other

    Votes: 2 3.7%
  • Moderate Other

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • Liberal Other

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I do not consider myself a Christian

    Votes: 37 68.5%
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello ISTP's! How many of you identify as Christian? If you do, what broad-base denomination do you belong to and how liberal or conservative do you consider yourself? Any answers help, even if you aren't a Christian.

Conservative Christianity, broadly speaking, is a belief in the inerrancy or near-inerrancy of the Bible, a generally literal reading of the Bible, and a belief that the death and resurrection of Jesus is the one way to salvation. There is much overlap here with Christian fundamentalism: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_fundamentalism

Liberal Christianity, broadly speaking, is a generally non-literal reading of the Bible, consideration of the Bible as a text essentially by man about God, and a belief in the non-exclusivity of Christianity as truth. Here is the wikipedia article on it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberal_christianity

If you think one of the above describes your beliefs in essence, select it. If not, select moderate.

If you're wondering what I intend to do with the results, check out my blog post here: MBTI Correlation Project - Blogs - PersonalityCafe

Tag me or quote me if you want to get my attention on this thread. If there's an option you would like to select, but isn't available, let me know and I'll enter your information manually if possible. Also, this may be a fool's hope, but I'd prefer to keep this thread free of religious debate. I'm simply gathering data here.

Thanks everyone!
 

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Religion is an ideal based around faith.

Faith is a subjective response.

ISTPs see the objective rather than the subjective.

Hence, ISTPs aren't especially prone to being religious.
 

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I believe in God, satan, Heaven, and hell etc but I'm not a Christian (my Dad is) or anything else
 

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Religion is an ideal based around faith.

Faith is a subjective response.

ISTPs see the objective rather than the subjective.

Hence, ISTPs aren't especially prone to being religious.
Actually faith is for anyone who needs it.
 

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I am kind of disappointed that the categories are so narrow.
 

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Well, there seems to be an overwhelming majority for "not a christian"...
 

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I am kind of disappointed that the categories are so narrow.
Me too. But understandable why they are. There are so many distinctions, the poll would never end.
 
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As an ISTP Conservative Christian, I can understand why Christianity wouldn't naturally appeal to an ISTP, a type that prefers to think for oneself and deal with real-world tangible facts. I've been meaning to write a blog post about how being an ISTP clashes with and supports my Christian beliefs at the same time... but I keep procrastinating on that.
 

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As an ISTP Conservative Christian, I can understand why Christianity wouldn't naturally appeal to an ISTP, a type that prefers to think for oneself and deal with real-world tangible facts. I've been meaning to write a blog post about how being an ISTP clashes with and supports my Christian beliefs at the same time... but I keep procrastinating on that.
My whole family on both sides, excluding a cousin or two, is very Conservative and very Catholic. So since I was raised so religious, I'm used to it and I like it. At the same time, though, I know that if I wasn't raised in such a strict family, I would've given up on Christianity a long time ago. It just doesn't feel natural for me, believing in something that there's no tangible proof of. Like, there are some people who, religious or not, will always be inclined to believe there's more out there. But for me, believing there's some big invisible man in the sky... It's weird, you know? I have to make a conscious effort. Even like praying and stuff, I mean I do it, but it feels weird. I think another part of it is how ISTP's are so independent, and we like to think everyone's equal. So having to go to Church, and just the idea in general that there's someone better and more important than us who we should worship and rely on, it kind of goes against everything ISTP's stand for. >.<

It's like, I really do believe that Christianity is all true, but my head and my gut aren't so sure. I'd be interested to hear the "and supports my Christian beliefs at the same time" part. I seem to have trouble with that one.
 

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My whole family on both sides, excluding a cousin or two, is very Conservative and very Catholic. So since I was raised so religious, I'm used to it and I like it. At the same time, though, I know that if I wasn't raised in such a strict family, I would've given up on Christianity a long time ago. It just doesn't feel natural for me, believing in something that there's no tangible proof of. Like, there are some people who, religious or not, will always be inclined to believe there's more out there. But for me, believing there's some big invisible man in the sky... It's weird, you know? I have to make a conscious effort. Even like praying and stuff, I mean I do it, but it feels weird. I think another part of it is how ISTP's are so independent, and we like to think everyone's equal. So having to go to Church, and just the idea in general that there's someone better and more important than us who we should worship and rely on, it kind of goes against everything ISTP's stand for. >.<
Ah, I can definitely see how growing up in the Catholic Church would be difficult for an ISTP. I feel like the entire Roman Catholic Church as a collective entity is ESTJ. :)

It's like, I really do believe that Christianity is all true, but my head and my gut aren't so sure. I'd be interested to hear the "and supports my Christian beliefs at the same time" part. I seem to have trouble with that one.
Okay, I'll see if I can break it down by functions...

Ti: Coming to my own conclusions on what's true, based on connecting the information I gather through my own research. Does God exist? Was Jesus Christ the Son of God as he claimed? Is the Bible reliable? What are the chances that everything we observe in nature came about by random chance? Others may disagree, but the knowledge I've come across over the years supports my belief in God our Creator and Jesus Christ as His Son in whom we find salvation.

Se: Being outside and observing the wonder and beauty of God's creation. When I go on a road trip or a hike, I like to take in everything I see around me, whether it's mountains or the ocean, a variety of trees and other vegetation, cloud formations, or a sunset -- just appreciating both the beauty and the complexity of God's craftsmanship in everything in nature.

Ni: As a tertiary function, this is often used in conjunction with the first two functions and may not be understood. But I realize that God may sometimes speak to me through this function -- just a simple gut feeling that gets my attention, makes me suddenly aware of a pattern in what I'm observing, or a truth about someone that I'm supposed to act on. Maybe there's a need that I'm supposed to pray for or a person I need to reach out to and have just the right words to say. It's strange the way God works, but this allows me to trust in what He's doing.

Fe: Usually not very well-developed in most ISTPs as an inferior function, just having it allows me to be aware of and consider other people's needs in the things I do, as the Bible instructs us to. I may not be much into giving warm hugs and being all smiley and mushy around people, but I see the importance in offering prayer support when needed, serving other people by giving my time, or just forming connections with people when I otherwise would have nothing to gain. The whole "love your neighbor as yourself" thing.

I could probably say more if I put more thought into it, but that's the basic idea of how the ISTP's cognitive functions support my Christian beliefs and lifestyle. You can feel free to PM me if you want to know more.
 

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@Celebok: Thanks for that excellent breakdown of how the functions can relate to spiritual experience and faith. That's exactly my experience, too.

@Randroth: just wanted to grab your attention to elaborate on what I mean by what I checked:

I checked "Conservative Catholic". What I mean is "orthodox Catholic", with a little 'o', which means I'm a Christian who believes in the Nicene creed, and the dual teaching authority of the bible and the magisterium (the pope in union with the cardinals). (If the bible is accepted as an authority itself, it obviously needs a competent, authoritative method of interpretation. I believe the magisterium is that authority, and its interpretation of the bible is sensible, rational, consistent, and true.)

I was agnostic for a long time. Then I realized that my way of seeing things wasn't entirely correct, my focus was somehow out of whack, and my way of doing things didn't always work (sometimes worked very badly). Then I had to figure out what was real, what was true, what was important, and how things really worked. I had to tap into the intuitive-feeling side of things, but using sensing and especially thinking to work them out (as Celebok describes), I sorted through all different principles, philosophies, and beliefs. Consistency, rationality, and realism were absolutely essential. I ended up an orthodox Catholic. That was over 10 years ago and nothing I've encountered since has caused me to question the whole basis of my beliefs again, although I'm always trying to deepen my understandings and correct my misunderstandings. Matters of faith and philosophy are the only things more interesting to me than MBTI. So, yeah, religion and spirituality are not just for NFs and SJs.

@raichu and anyone else interested:

For me, it's very much about how things work, which is an ISTP thing, and then it gives me a framework for understanding and operating in the more intuitive-feeling areas of life which sort of naturally elude me. But I think spiritual psychologists generally agree that different types of people approach and experience God/the divine in different ways: some seek The One, some The True, some The Good, and some The Beautiful. I think many thinking types are truth-seekers and more captivated by The True than, say, The Good (which may be more attractive, for example, to certain SJ types). So, just because certain aspects of religion that other people just love don't remotely interest us, doesn't really mean anything about our own spiritual potential.

I think some of the greatest saints and mystics throughout the ages have been more Se types. Personally, I'm convinced St Francis of Assisi was an ESFP. (GK Chesterton's biography of him illustrates it beautifully.) I think maybe SJ types sort of keep things running on the local and hierarchical levels, but throughout Christian history, and including today, the less visible parts of the Church around the world include monks, hermits, and contemplatives of every type, and people of all different personalities. Personally, I love monasticism (what ISTP doesn't just want to be left alone?) and I devour books about it. One great, fun book is "The Sayings of the Desert Fathers." The Desert Fathers were monks of the 4th century who fled the state church and went into the desert to take Christianity back to its spiritual roots (and thus preserved it). The anecdotal stories of them are fascinating, insightful, and hilarious.
 

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I'd rather read the little black book myself IF I wanna believe. Churches won't save you.
 

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I grew up in a fundamentalist christian home, but I always was pretty liberal. For some reason, though, it took me almost two decades to overcome my obedience to the information control inherent in the denomination where I was an active member.

Once I began gathering information to truly make an informed choice when it came to faith, there was no turning back. I had already reduced my religion to a philosophy over the years, to avoid breaking my brain on the obvious causes of cognitive dissonance, but after a couple of additional realizations, I've gradually moved from somewhere between 2 and 3 (in my early teens) to a strong 6, on the Dawkins scale of belief.

I agree pretty much with @Falling Leaves, that if it weren't for upbringing and information control (intentional or not) from our role models during our formative years, few ISTPs would consider themselves Christian - or, for that matter, even religious.


To comment on @Celebok's post, Ti and Se, with a good helping of Ni, is not only what makes us into believers and competent advocates of our faith, but also what's likely to smash that faith utterly once we allow ourselves to truly try and understand the processes we grew up learning to use as arguments from incredulity or from ignorance. And that, I believe, is not a bad thing.
- As one learns about biology, the reason for God's existence as a creator narrows until it's just a complicating layer which adds nothing relevant to the model - and therefore can be disregarded.
- As one realizes that individuals don't really build their morals on the Bible, but that they actually fit the message of the Bible to their morals, God becomes an irrelevant variable in philosophy too: You wouldn't suddenly become a worse person if God didn't exist. That, or you're truly a coward, if the sole reason for your goodness is a towering threat of punishment, or an opportunist, if your goodness comes only from a wish to be rewarded.
- The matter of miracles too falls under the axe: History is full of stories that are rightfully considered myths or tall tales, but suddenly, if these stories are written down in this book rather than that one, they are to be believed with no misgivings - and belief in the face of common sense, which in most cases is called credulity and frowned upon, becomes faith, if it's directed towards a certain religious leader (but of course not any of the other ones - that would be silly).
 
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