Later, I reflected that my tone, out of awareness at time of utterance, was the element to which she was reacting as a feeling type, and that my insistence on staying on topic showed up in her experience as my controlling her. Such was my first conscious application of Beebe’s sobering formulation of the monster-in-play when our eighth function breathes fire at another’s dominant function.
The alien invasion can then be viewed as a necessary fragmentation of the psyche, occurring when the ego is too rigidly identified with the dominant function. The crisis brings renewal by breaking apart the ego identity so that the previously unrealized functions can be differentiated and integrated, thereby transforming the conscious attitude.
“Once upon a time, there was a quiet little village in the French countryside whose people believed in tranquillité.” This opening indicates that the psychological orientation of the village is one of peace and calmness, agreeability and order, suggesting that the village has certain values through which it judges situations—in other words a feeling function is at work.
In our home ‘to J’ is a commonly used verb. “Who J’d the gaffer tape?” means, “Who put the gaffer tape away somewhere where I can’t find it?” My J-preferenced housemates need predictable order; I need a multitude of choices always visibly at hand. They like surfaces clear and relatively tidy. I need everything out where I can see it.
In a dream she showed up as twins. One who was quiet and could play by herself (like her father, Ti) and the other who was very precocious as she hung upside down from a tree (like her mother, Te), reflecting the inherent nature of the Opposing Personality. From the outset of our work her battle seemed to reflect inferiority about not being an extravert.
Fight Club’s accomplishment is to elicit in us the instinctive fear, resistance, and embarrassment we all experience around the domain of our inferior function, whichever function that may be for us. The reward for sticking with the movie until the end is a catharsis that feels as if we have integrated our own inferior function.
In the business world I have the privilege and challenge of leading a group of people where our typology is diverse. Sometimes, when we need each other most, we let each other down as the stress ignites the respective shadow functions within each of us. In the scenarios described herein, the ESTJs may have expected me, their ENFJ leader, to respond in crisis with warmth and sensitivity; but the stress of crisis became a game changer…