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Discussion Starter #1
I just read an interesting description of introverted feeling from von Franz's Lectures on Jung's Typology. She says:

A very good example of [introverted feeling] is the Austrian poet, Rainer Maria Rilke. He once wrote... "I love you, but it's none of your business"! That is love for love's sake. Feeling is very strong, but it does not flow toward the object. It is rather like being in a state of love with oneself. Naturally this type of feeling is very much misunderstood, and such people are considered very cold. But they are not at all; the feeling is all within them.

How does this sit with you INFPs? Does anything stand out as dead on or as way off the mark?

(Still trying to get my head around Fi and how to interact well with Fi-doms...)
 

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I disagree with the interpretation of "love for love sake." I prefer Deeprak Chopra's interpretation. The beginning stages of love is all about exchange: I will love you if you love me back. It's all about wanting something from the other person, whether its wanting a relationship or just wanting them to like you back. At some point, you love them even if they stop loving you back.

Internally love is a feeling. Externally love is an action. Other people don't know you love them because they can't feel your feelings. What they can see is your actions and interpret them as your love for them. When love stops being about exchange, you continue acting in a way that expresses that love and they don't really need to know because you don't want anything back.
 

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It's just wired, because someone I was once involved with suggested I read that poet, subsequently I still have her books...
 

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The dominant function is oriented inward. Judgment is primarily made using personal values as a guide. It also means that personal values are held very closely to the subject's inherent value; Fi is subjective. Emotional expression in a Fi dom is generally concealed unless those values seem to be threatened. In a Fi tert, like myself, Te is favored instead, which is more of an "order of the outer world" function.

That said, regarding the OP... yes, to an extent. My values and feelings are naturally very private. It's taken an amount of energy and study to recognize that I can kind of change the way I handle that and share my values with others, rather than just responding to things with my opinions on specific circumstances. After my last girlfriend and I broke up, she found my profile on OKCupid and was shocked. She said I don't even sound like the same person. She had no idea I had such strong feelings about the things I did, because we just never discussed it.
 

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I just read an interesting description of introverted feeling from von Franz's Lectures on Jung's Typology. She says:
A very good example of [introverted feeling] is the Austrian poet, Rainer Maria Rilke. He once wrote... "I love you, but it's none of your business"! That is love for love's sake. Feeling is very strong, but it does not flow toward the object. It is rather like being in a state of love with oneself. Naturally this type of feeling is very much misunderstood, and such people are considered very cold. But they are not at all; the feeling is all within them.
How does this sit with you INFPs? Does anything stand out as dead on or as way off the mark?
(Still trying to get my head around Fi and how to interact well with Fi-doms...)
-----I think my level of dis/agreement depends on the type of relationship. In regard to non-romantic relationships, I adopt the phrase inscribed on the country's first penny, the Fugio cent: "Mind Your Business."
-----In a romantic relationship, I think the sharing of love (emotions) must be freely given and freely received to maintain the health of a relationship. This, to me, means using all 5 Love Languages. This means communicating love on all channels. Perhaps it's true that the value of the love is judged internally--such that we equate the love we personally feel with the level of love present in the relationship. Yes, that's true, even to our detriment. We may internally feel love much more strongly than the other person such that we are actually deluding ourselves about the strength of the love felt by the other person in the relationship. This is why I am always preaching that INFPs should require reciprocity. I don't mean that they should demand proof of love. That's not it. But I think it is important to occasionally objectively analyze the past and come to a logical conclusion regarding how much love the other person feels for you. A relationship is made up of two people after all. I think INFPs often take the total responsibility for love in a relationship. Ultimately, that person will be crushed by that burden. It is important to acknowledge that we need to receive love (and actually be loved) as much as we need to give love and feel love. An INFP who cannot sort these things out is headed for disillusionment cove.
-----So, for me love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated. I think this is why many INFPs can love someone just for being. Our love is like a spring, generated from with in, rather than a stream, which is more connected to the cycle of rain, snowpack, and melting.
-----But insofar as that the source of love is internal (and not necessarily generated by external acts of love), I can see how someone who searches for external cues and acts of love might perceive our love to be self-centered. The question is perhaps, "How can love be authentic which I did nothing or little to earn it?" That is a valid question. The best way I can explain it is like this. We love like a puppy does (at least I do). It runs toward you and licks you and overwhelms you and needs little in return. The only difference is that our love is the love of one person for another--as mature and deep as any other kind of love. But it's source and expression is innocent and pure and free. That is, at least, unless it's been polluted and abused. At that point, we, or at least I, have to look at it more in terms of Te, which function requires some evidence of love as a minimal requisite to maintaining the free flow of love.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I read a quote by someone on another thread, it may have been @LiquidLight, not sure, read it this morning...

"Fi - i love you and it's none of your business"

"Fe - I love you and I'm going to make it YOUR BUSINESS!"

I sooooooo agree with the first.
Haha, I kind of agree with the second.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
We may internally feel love much more strongly than the other person such that we are actually deluding ourselves about the strength of the love felt by the other person in the relationship
This piqued my curiosity. Do you think it's true that Fi users assume that their relational partner (whatever that means) is feeling the same way they are?

It is important to acknowledge that we need to receive love (and actually be loved) as much as we need to give love and feel love.
I think most people have a very hard time receiving love, regardless of their personality type. Grace, which is undeserved love, is almost an affront to the sane person. It doesn't make any sense, and we fight against simply accepting something that isn't earned, that we haven't proven ourselves somehow worthy of.

So, for me love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated. I think this is why many INFPs can love someone just for being. Our love is like a spring, generated from with in, rather than a stream, which is more connected to the cycle of rain, snowpack, and melting.
That's beautiful, and I'm actually pretty jealous, if it's true ;). I could certainly not claim that any of my love is that pure. There is always an aspect of wanting something in return, some sort of reciprocity. Agape love is what you're describing, and it is my ideal, but I'm a long way from it.
 

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I think Jung described it best

'the truth is, her feelings are intensive rather than extensive. They develop into the depth. Whereas, for instance, an extensive feeling of sympathy can express itself in both word and deed at the right place, thus quickly ridding itself of its impression, an intensive sympathy, because shut off from every means of expression, gains a passionate depth that embraces the misery of a world and is simply benumbed.'
 

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Whereas, for instance, an extensive feeling of sympathy can express itself in both word and deed at the right place, thus quickly ridding itself of its impression, an intensive sympathy, because shut off from every means of expression, gains a passionate depth that embraces the misery of a world and is simply benumbed.
I think that this quote is beautiful and it may well be one of the most tragic aspects of the Introverted Feeler. Learning how to express oneself is important, I feel, because that self-contained vacuum is seldom fulfilling. And yet... no matter what I say, think or do, nothing ever seems to come out the way it sits within me. I wonder if it is even possible for another to know the extent of that depth which retreats inward unto infinity. The only way would seem to be to allow them to come in as far as they will, but to risk such vulnerability... the thought terrifies me.
 

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How does this sit with you INFPs? Does anything stand out as dead on or as way off the mark?
It does not sit well with me. I'm sure it is not like "love for love's sake". I also think that saying "being in a state of love with oneself" is kinda fishy. To me, these sound rather vain and empty.

The first part though, "I love you, but it's none of your business", yeah I think that sort of rings true *if* used to describe Fi. Replacing the word 'love' by 'hate', yes, it works for me. But! In the sense that I could love/hate someone and that there's not much she/he could do about it, in the sense that I experience that the 'locus of control' is within me. They could love me more, love me less, hate me more, hate me less, apologize, etc etc... But I'll be the judge. Wow, sounds weird, but that's probably because I'm talking about Fi, not really about love.

I guess both "not your business" and "making it your business" don't particularly sit well with me because of how they sound: respectively exclusive (shutting someone out) and inclusive (involving) to the point of it looking like very black and white. But now I'm talking about love in general, *not* about Fi.

Heh, it took me a while to write this down, because it was sort of confusing to discern whether I was thinking about love or Fi.

-----So, for me love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated.
How would you explain it for Fe-dom? Or are you as well talking about love, not about Fi?
 

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This piqued my curiosity. Do you think it's true that Fi users assume that their relational partner (whatever that means) is feeling the same way they are?
-----Especially when young and/or unaware of our type, I think the answer is a resounding yes. But I don't mean in the moment. I certainly feel other people's feelings. I have to speak in the past tense, since I have grown past that assumption. After I was in love with my girlfriend (now wife), I could still feel her emotions--happiness, sadness, and so on. I could tell, for instance, if she was feeling doubtful, but if she were feeling doubt in regard to the relationship, I wouldn't have, for a second, thought the doubt she was feeling had anything to do with the relationship. She would've had to have made that extraordinarily clear. My assumption then was, "I love you. That love must stem from something real and tangible. Therefore, you must have done something to indicate that you love me." You probably notice that the chain of causation is reversed--it's reasoned from affect to cause rather than from cause to affect. Perhaps that's why Fi is sometimes classified as selfish.
-----This assumption is often to our detriment. We might see love where there is no reciprocity or weaker reciprocity. Once we realize that our assumption is false, we can become disillusioned. On the "Sith" side of things, we start Pygmalion Projects to make the other person "adequately" soulful and/or loving. I have not done that myself, but Keirsey describes this possibility. Mostly, we just end up unconditionally accepting someone--we see something special in them even if they don't see it in us. Which I guess always begs the question--then why did you agree to the relationship? LOL. But that's our assumption working against us, again.
-----I think that Fi has a difficult time dealing with the schedule of affection/relationship timing. We don't easily understand that it takes some people a longer or shorter time to fall in love, for instance. From my understanding, Fe needs love to develop at intervals, and this is something that should be explained to an unaware Fi--who should be willing to wait once s/he understands. You're on your own trying to explain that to T. LOL.
Citation: Idealists - Myer Brigg's Personality Types
I think most people have a very hard time receiving love, regardless of their personality type. Grace, which is undeserved love, is almost an affront to the sane person. It doesn't make any sense, and we fight against simply accepting something that isn't earned, that we haven't proven ourselves somehow worthy of.
-----I don't know about other types, but INFPs can be very much as you described. We like to give, and so something somehow seems wrong about receiving. But it is very important for INFPs to come to terms with their relationship needs before entering a long-term relationship.
-----I think there is sometimes the thinking that something earned is more valuable than something unearned. Maybe sometimes that's true--maybe most of the time it's true. But would I walk by a giant gold nugget just because it was on the ground? I wouldn't. I certainly wouldn't go get a pick-ax and start mining so that I felt the gold I dug up was earned. But while love is gold, it's also not actually gold.
-----But the concept you are describing is deeply ingrained. For instance, imagine that a woman usually waits a substantial amount of time before sleeping with someone, and then she meets someone who she thinks is so special that she hops in the sack with him right away. How is the guy going to see things? Why does he see things that way? I'm asking the questions, but I don't know the answers. I think it's because he just can't tell the difference between someone who would sleep with anyone on the first date and someone like the woman described above. It's not fair. It yields bad results. But it is what it is. And it takes a tremendous amount of work before that man, for instance, would be able to realize that the woman above was giving him something far more special and different than other women engaging in the same behavior would have been.
-----*If you think my example is sexist, please go ahead and switch the sexes.
That's beautiful, and I'm actually pretty jealous, if it's true ;). I could certainly not claim that any of my love is that pure. There is always an aspect of wanting something in return, some sort of reciprocity. Agape love is what you're describing, and it is my ideal, but I'm a long way from it.
-----I think reciprocity is the hallmark of a healthy relationship. It's just that it takes time for INFPs to realize that, it seems. My eye-opener on this topic was here: What's Wrong with Unconditional Love (Part 1)
 

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My assumption then was, "I love you. That love must stem from something real and tangible. Therefore, you must have done something to indicate that you love me." You probably notice that the chain of causation is reversed--it's reasoned from affect to cause rather than from cause to affect. Perhaps that's why Fi is sometimes classified as selfish.
Wow, this is absolutely fascinating to me. I've never heard it articulated this way. And it is sooo foreign to me that I almost did a spit-take with my can of coke :). But it makes perfect sense in light of subjected introverted functions vs objective extraverted functions. It is the exact opposite for me... Crazy. Thanks for this insight.

For instance, imagine that a woman usually waits a substantial amount of time before sleeping with someone, and then she meets someone who she thinks is so special that she hops in the sack with him right away. How is the guy going to see things? Why does he see things that way? I'm asking the questions, but I don't know the answers. I think it's because he just can't tell the difference between someone who would sleep with anyone on the first date and someone like the woman described above. It's not fair. It yields bad results. But it is what it is. And it takes a tremendous amount of work before that man, for instance, would be able to realize that the woman above was giving him something far more special and different than other women engaging in the same behavior would have been.
That's a very interesting example. I'm going to abstract from sex/romance here, because I think what you're saying is applicable to all types of relationships with INFPs. Perhaps we outsiders don't realize how precious and special external acts of love are from the INFP.

I think reciprocity is the hallmark of a healthy relationship. It's just that it takes time for INFPs to realize that, it seems. My eye-opener on this topic was here: What's Wrong with Unconditional Love (Part 1)
I think I might have a different opinion here, but only because I'm defining love more broadly than the article. Sometimes the most loving thing you can do for someone is to put up a wall/boundary and let them wrestle with their own demons. For example, if someone is being abusive, it's not loving to enable that. So if you factor that into the equation of unconditional love, then I think it is the ideal for a relationship. And I mean ideal in the true, unattainable sense of the word! For me, truly loving someone is being more interested in their growth and joy and peace and all that other good stuff than in the comfort and benefits of the relationship... to be more committed to their *good* than to their walk with you.
 

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"-----So, for me love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated."
How would you explain it for Fe-dom? Or are you as well talking about love, not about Fi?
-----I can look at a piece of writing and then frame a question, and then answer that question--all without also specifying what question I am answering. I guess I did that. I framed the (implied) question as, "How does an INFP (as a Fi-dom) experience love as distinguished from other types?"
-----Also, I do sometimes switch from talking about INFPs in general (based on what I've read and observed) to my particular experience as an INFP. I also sometimes use "I" for "we" and "we" for "I." I'm coming to understand that this habit may be because I am a Type-9 INFP--not because I am an INFP.
-----So, I'll try to give you a differential based on my understanding. But I'm sure whatever I say about Fe will come off with a Fi bias. So, Fe users, I apologize for that ahead of time. I'm just offering my admittedly incomplete understanding as it currently and tentatively stands. Please read INFJ or INFP? a closer look and Understanding Berens' Interaction Styles before yelling at me (though I am not saying to not get mad).
  • Fi: Love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated. Process: Love is felt (which assumes that an internal feeling of love is an accurate indicator of the other's actually feeling love and has perhaps caused my feelings of love), so its cause is assumed (that the other loves me).
  • Fe: The source of the current is externally generated (love is observed as flowing from the object of love), so the stream must be strong enough to turn the water wheel, which in turn opens the flood gates and redirects the stream from whence it came. Process: The cause is observed (that the other loves me), so love is felt (which assumes that the observations of love are accurate indicators of the other's actually feeling love).
-----I lost the metaphor at the end of the Fe example. It's good until after the water hits the water wheel. LOL. Anyway, input is always appreciated.
 
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The first part though, "I love you, but it's none of your business", yeah I think that sort of rings true *if* used to describe Fi. Replacing the word 'love' by 'hate', yes, it works for me. But! In the sense that I could love/hate someone and that there's not much she/he could do about it, in the sense that I experience that the 'locus of control' is within me. They could love me more, love me less, hate me more, hate me less, apologize, etc etc... But I'll be the judge. Wow, sounds weird, but that's probably because I'm talking about Fi, not really about love.
That makes sense to me, based on my experience with Fi... whereas my Fe judges *based on* the other's actions. We're so different!!
 

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  • Fi: Love flows freely toward the object of love, but the source of the current is internally generated. Process: Love is felt (which assumes that an internal feeling of love is an accurate indicator of the other's actually feeling love and has perhaps caused my feelings of love), so its cause is assumed (that the other loves me).
  • Fe: The source of the current is externally generated (love is observed as flowing from the object of love), so the stream must be strong enough to turn the water wheel, which in turn opens the flood gates and redirects the stream from whence it came. Process: The cause is observed (that the other loves me), so love is felt (which assumes that the observations of love are accurate indicators of the other's actually feeling love).
-----I lost the metaphor at the end of the Fe example. It's good until after the water hits the water wheel. LOL. Anyway, input is always appreciated.
Yeah, you see, I have a difficult time making it rhyme myself :3 The source, that is. I mean, okay, assuming for Fi the source is internal and the flow is outward, it must be like a mirror for Fe: external source, flow is inward. But as you wrote it (and as I'm imagining it), I could easily object by saying that Fe is rather selfish, since the condition is that the other must love the subject: Fe cannot (feel) love if not being loved first. This must be false, in the sense that anyone can love without being loved first... right? I like using generalizations for 'statistical predictions', but this is just... It just can't be true! xD

Spinning the wheel around once more: where does the love that the Fi user has, come from? One doesn't simply walk out of Mordor, I mean, one does not simply start loving/feeling love out of nowhere.

I mean, it's just weird... I understand what you are saying but there's something not right and I can't put a finger on it. The more I think about it, the more I feel that using love to discern Fi and Fe is just lame, one of the (indirectly related) reasons being that love (in a healthy romantic relationship) is reciprocal.

Perhaps I'm overanalyzing. -.-"

That makes sense to me, based on my experience with Fi... whereas my Fe judges *based on* the other's actions. We're so different!!
I do use other's actions in my judgment. Assuming I'm an INFP (I have recently shed off the certainty of it), the main drive behind my judgment are my thoughts and/or feelings about the actions (which of course can be swayed by others' opinions), whereas for you, yes I can see how Fe might be the main drive, but I don't know, I think it works different for NiFeTi, just a hunch I have.

I mean, stereotypically, Fi is about personally validated values, Fe is about socially validated values.

Hm. I need more time to think this through as well. Le sigh. xD
 

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Wow, this is absolutely fascinating to me. I've never heard it articulated this way. And it is sooo foreign to me that I almost did a spit-take with my can of coke :). But it makes perfect sense in light of subjected introverted functions vs objective extraverted functions. It is the exact opposite for me... Crazy. Thanks for this insight.
-----I love your word-choice: spit-take. LOL.
That's a very interesting example. I'm going to abstract from sex/romance here, because I think what you're saying is applicable to all types of relationships with INFPs. Perhaps we outsiders don't realize how precious and special external acts of love are from the INFP.
-----I hadn't thought of that, but it's very true that external acts of love are reserved for the most special. Personally, I'm trying to readjust that a little by becoming much more openly affirming of other people. I read on the PersonalityPage's profile that an area of potential growth for INTPs is to realize that solving problems internally yields little benefit to the outer world if not explained/shared. I think much the same goes for INFPs. Is it really as effective if all the feeling I feel internally is not also expressed to the people around me?
-----But this can be a problematic area. I remember reading something somewhere about INFPs and ENFJs battling because INFPs reserve expressions of external feeling for special people and they see ENFJs giving away expressions of external feeling like candy. So, INFPs, jealous much? LOL. Meanwhile, ENFJs reserve expressions of internal feeling for special people and they see INFPs giving away expressions of internal feeling like candy. And that's jealousy part 2. As an INFP, in a smallish group of people, I readily share deep opinions, feelings, etc., and openly express affirmation and empathy. Perhaps that is Fi-induced.
-----But I also think INFJs run a similar risk of lack of appreciation. In my NF group, during one Meetup, one INFJ really opened up and starting talking a mile a minute. I recognized that what she was sharing with the group was something she usually reserved, so I did my best to listen and not stop the flow. And what she was sharing had so much feeling and was also interesting. But, afterward, a couple of people commented to me (not to her, thank God) that they thought the conversation got too one-sided at some points. I said I liked what she was saying, but I did not yet have the understanding to explain the dynamics at work. From what I've learned, I think she (INFJ) felt accepted enough to share something very special from deep within her--but most of the Fi users, because we are much freer with such expression, did not really understand how difficult that must have been for her to do. So misunderstanding can easily flow both directions. That's one of the reasons I am trying to get a handle on Fe v. Fi (so that it doesn't turn into FE V. FI).
I think I might have a different opinion here, but only because I'm defining love more broadly than the article. Sometimes the most loving thing you can do for someone is to put up a wall/boundary and let them wrestle with their own demons. For example, if someone is being abusive, it's not loving to enable that. So if you factor that into the equation of unconditional love, then I think it is the ideal for a relationship. And I mean ideal in the true, unattainable sense of the word! For me, truly loving someone is being more interested in their growth and joy and peace and all that other good stuff than in the comfort and benefits of the relationship... to be more committed to their *good* than to their walk with you.
-----I agree with all of the above. Except I guess I would say that in an ideal relationship I think the unconditional love should be both given and received. Otherwise the giver will end up with a taker. So I think it is important for both people to both freely give and freely receive unconditional love. And that includes all the other stuff like respecting each other's personal autonomy, compromising, personal and relationship growth development, and so on. And I mean after a serious mutual commitment has been made. But maybe we're not disagreeing. I don't know.
-----I appreciate your insights.
 
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@eyenexepee: I have to go, now, but I'll reply to your post, later. Maybe I'll just edit this post.

EDIT: Nope, I forgot. Answer is below.
 

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I am coming from the realm of relying on aux. Fe, so this sensation, while I have felt it, is not really natural to me. So I am trying to understand exactly what Fi is, esp. as it pertains to the Rilke quote. Is it basically unexpressed, unrequited love? The classic, tragic sentiment reminds me of Goethe's poor Werther, or more exactly, the quiet and restrained Hans from The Magic Mountain.

Do you think that unrequited love can be fruitful? Is someone using the Fi in this way likely to feel pleasure or fulfillment?
 
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