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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
It is commonly thought that 'Thinkers' are those who structure their experiences in a rational and logical manner. In this thread I offer an argument regarding why I think that this description is entirely meaningless. The argument is this:

'Thinkers' often claim to be 'logical' or 'rational' without possessing any kind of knowledge of either formal logic or mathematics. If being 'logical' or 'rational in the capacity of a 'Thinker' does not amount to exercising formal logical or mathematical knowledge, then the term 'Thinker' is completely vacuous.

As far as I can tell, the only way to address this argument is to say that 'Thinkers' somehow have knowledge of these systems without being taught about them. This is an insanely strong claim that I doubt many would endorse. Even if they did, it would be an insurmountable task to justify it. It is of course entirely possible, but alas an entirely different point, to say that someone may have a capacity for formal logic or mathematics. It does not follow from that one has a great mathematical aptitude that one is somehow able to do mathematics. The latter evidently requires teaching.

An implication of this problem is therefore that 'Thinkers' must be taught how to 'Think' before they can be 'Thinkers'. But this is absurd, because one does not derive one's psychological type by virtue of learning about some random piece of information. The conclusion must thus be that there is either no such thing as a 'Thinker' psychological type, or the term 'Thinker' really means nothing at all.

By 'Thinker' I mean any MBTI description that contains a 'T'.

Edit: Because it's apparently very difficult to understand the above post, here's a summary of the idea:

Sequence said:
The thesis is that the 'Thinker' predication either means nothing, or is not a psychological function.

The argument is that if 'Thinking' amounts to use of mathematical or formal logical reasoning, then it is not a psychological type because it is reducible to acquired skills. If, on the other hand, 'Thinking' is neither use of mathematical or formal logical reasoning, then the term means nothing whatsoever.
 

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So basically you could have said:

If you're not good at math you're not a real thinker?
Lol

While the purest form of logical and rational might have a mathematical component, the words are not used exclusively for defining such a thing.

Easiest way to say it is reasoning based LESS on emotion or values/beliefs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

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'Thinkers' often claim to be 'logical' or 'rational' without possessing any kind of knowledge of either formal logic or mathematics. If being 'logical' or 'rational in the capacity of a 'Thinker' does not amount to exercising formal logical or mathematical knowledge, then the term 'Thinker' is completely vacuous.
Did you need formal training in order to start learning language? Once you had a foundation from your observations you were able to take classes or learn further from experience in order to hone your knowledge of language. Same thing with logic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Did you need formal training in order to start learning language? Once you had a foundation from your observations you were able to take classes or learn further from experience in order to hone your knowledge of language. Same thing with logic.
Having a capacity for formal logic does not mean that you can use formal logic. I clearly outline why in my post.
 

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Having a capacity for formal logic does not mean that you can use formal logic. I clearly outline why in my post.
It was actually an analogy about... never mind.

"Formal logic, the abstract study of propositions, statements, or assertively used sentences and of deductive arguments."

A person who functions in society will inevitably pick up experiences that enable them to either validate or invalidate a point. A person who knows about contradictions can refute my claim "there are squares that are also triangles" because the two don't make sense together. Every type uses formal logic, the reason why we are called thinkers is because it is the dominant value. Since we tend to be better abstract thinkers we can come to the conclusion that there are no such things as squares that are also triangles more easily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
NT the DC said:
While the purest form of logical and rational might have a mathematical component, the words are not used exclusively for defining such a thing.
If 'Thinking' does not amount to knowledge of mathematics or formal logic, then what is it? This is my argument, and it concludes that because 'Thinking' means nothing beyond these two taught things, 'Thinking' either means nothing or is not really a psychological type description at all.
 

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All people thinks, ergo all people are 'thinkers' - in MBTI 'thinker' is a epithet, you can use another if you want. I don't care.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It was actually an analogy about... never mind.

"Formal logic, the abstract study of propositions, statements, or assertively used sentences and of deductive arguments."

A person who functions in society will inevitably pick up experiences that enable them to either validate or invalidate a point. A person who knows about contradictions can refute my claim "there are squares that are also triangles" because the two don't make sense together. Every type uses formal logic, the reason why we are called thinkers is because it is the dominant value. Since we tend to be better abstract thinkers we can come to the conclusion that there are no such things as squares that are also triangles more easily.
So you then accept that 'Thinking' is acquired. In accordance with my argument, you must then accept that 'Thinking' is not really a psychological feature, but rather a contingent piece of information. This, as I said in my initial post, is clearly absurd.
 

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So you then accept that 'Thinking' is acquired. In accordance with my argument, you must then accept that 'Thinking' is not really a psychological feature, but rather a contingent piece of information.
It has to do with what we value most, you can go into the psychology of that if you like but there is a difference between those who are thinkers and those who are feelers. Your conceit is believing that because both types have it, there is no difference between how we choose to process that information and how we would use it in further decision making.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It has to do with what we value most, you can go into the psychology of that if you like but there is a difference between those who are thinkers and those who are feelers. Your conceit is believing that because both types have it, there is no difference between how we choose to process that information and how we would use it in further decision making.
I have absolutely no idea how you managed to interpret me like that. I have said no such thing.
 

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I have absolutely no idea how you managed to interpret me like that. I have said no such thing.
"An implication of this problem is therefore that 'Thinkers' must be taught how to 'Think' before they can be 'Thinkers'. But this is absurd, because one does not derive one's psychological type by virtue of learning about some random piece of information. The conclusion must thus be that there is either no such thing as a 'Thinker' psychological type, or the term 'Thinker' really means nothing at all."
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
"An implication of this problem is therefore that 'Thinkers' must be taught how to 'Think' before they can be 'Thinkers'. But this is absurd, because one does not derive one's psychological type by virtue of learning about some random piece of information. The conclusion must thus be that there is either no such thing as a 'Thinker' psychological type, or the term 'Thinker' really means nothing at all."
This quote is literally unrelated to your interpretation of it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Actually it isn't. Your stating that the conclusion must be that there is no such thing as a Thinker or that the label has no meaning is directly what I was referring to.
If I understand you correctly, you are saying that "Your stating that the conclusion must be that there is no such thing as a Thinker or that the label has no meaning" amounts to the following:

It has to do with what we value most, you can go into the psychology of that if you like but there is a difference between those who are thinkers and those who are feelers. Your conceit is believing that because both types have it, there is no difference between how we choose to process that information and how we would use it in further decision making.
This is clearly false, because as I've said all along, they have absolutely nothing to do with one another. I have no idea how you could possibly derive one of these from the other.
 

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I think that "The Thinkers", in this context, is referring to the INTP's description; one who analyzes, deconstructs, etc. in depth, etc.

Based on the MBTI's theory, the functions/description of an INTP are significantly distinct from the other types in that particular aspect, thus, ultimately being attributed a "function's" name.

The same goes for INFPs (The Idealists), INTJs (The Scientists), etc.

It does not mean that other types are not idealistic, or that other types cannot be scientifically inclined, it's a label attributed based on how pronounced their functions are in relation to the descriptions provided by the MBTI theory/system.

It's like when you label "school friends" (the joker, the smart guy, the [...]), you're simply using a point they manifest more than the others in order to categorize them using a stereotypical label that represents their highlighted feature(s).

Ti does this, Ne does this, combine both functions and prioritize them (1st and 2nd), they form a "type" that is, descriptively, more analytical, [...], this type of behavior due to 'x' function, etc., code-name; "The Thinkers".
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I think that "The Thinkers", in this context, is referring to the INTP's description; one who analyzes, deconstructs, etc. in depth, etc.
So, the issue is that I have no idea what this is supposed to mean, if it does not mean using formal logic or mathematical reasoning. However, my point is that being a 'Thinker' could not amount to doing this, because using formal logic and mathematical reasoning is an acquired skill, i.e. a contingent piece of information. Evidently, one cannot be a 'Thinker' simply by learning about some such information, because then 'Thinking' is not a psychological feature at all.
 
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There are a number of developmental disorders, such as ADHD and dyscalculia, that often interfere with one's ability to utilize logical reasoning. Does that make them a "feeler"?

The functions are predilections. Someone who depends on logic rather than value is a "thinker," and with practice, a thinker's logical reasoning might tend to improve. However, this growth isn't so linear for all; see disorders mentioned above.

I'm worried I haven't properly responded to your argument, honestly. Could you provide a thesis statement? Lol.
 

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If I understand you correctly, you are saying that "Your stating that the conclusion must be that there is no such thing as a Thinker or that the label has no meaning" amounts to the following:



This is clearly false, because as I've said all along, they have absolutely nothing to do with one another. I have no idea how you could possibly derive one of these from the other.
It's pretty clear cut and there aren't two ways about it. Your question "What does it mean to be a 'Thinker'?" along with your premise "The conclusion must thus be that there is either no such thing as a 'Thinker' psychological type, or the term 'Thinker' really means nothing at all." clearly show that the entire point of this thread was enumerating the reasons as to why you believe Thinker is not an accurate term for explaining psychological disposition.

I wonder how it is I came to that conclusion... "you must then accept that 'Thinking' is not really a psychological feature"
 
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