web analytics
Occasionally I wandered in where I was not wanted and gave truthful answers.
Sometimes I even did it deliberately. A little disruption now can prevent disaster later.

I've got personality

This is a page from the third version of Technopagan Yearnings. There are some formatting differences. Originally published at www.neowayland.com/C550866538/E20091215142526

Profiles are just the start to understanding, and programs don't always work

It's no secret that I am a big believer in networking.

Wait, let me back up. Hang on, we're going to ramble again.

There are things that most people take for granted, but they are not necessarily universally true. Cultural and personal assumptions shape your thinking, so much so that it's hard for you to think in any other way. Most of my life I've been privileged to live next to the Diné. Unlike most Western thought, the old way Diné don't map time and distance linearly. Relative direction is one thing, but magnitude is completely different. Everything is "over the next hill," and it takes as long as it takes. It makes sense in context, but there is a huge mismatch between American assumptions and Navajo assumptions. Take a form, for example. If something doesn't necessarily have a beginning or end, then just whose name belongs where it says "Name?" The company or government agency who gave them the form? The person who helps them fill it out? The person who takes the form? They know who they are, and they know that you know who they are, it makes no sense to put part of who they are now on a piece of paper.

Likewise, most people assume that others have roughly the same tools and techniques that they do. Yes, it's possible to make a pretty amazing portrait with hammer and nails, but paper and pencil work better. But only if you have them.

Part of the cross-wiring in my brain means that emotional connections do not come naturally for me, I have to work at it. Imagine going through life with no sense of balance, sure you could walk by keeping your eyes on a couple of levels, but it's a lot more effort. You make it look easy, but for me, it's the hat trick again. I work hard to make it smooth.

So for years, I've taken a tip from Harvey Mackay and kept track of some information from my important contacts. I started with his Mackay 66 and worked my way from there. My system now is about half the M66 and the rest is stuff I've picked up or that I have developed myself. When I switched from Palm Desktop for Mac to using the native OS X Address Book and iCal, I hadn't gone through and updated the templates for my profiles. Some stuff that I used to keep in "notes" for the contact could now be put in the address book fields, and some things needed to be added even if I didn't keep track before.

I break all the questions down into sections and paste them in my address book as needed. Obviously not everyone gets every section. "=profile 10 - sexuality" doesn't really apply to anyone I haven't slept with."=profile 8 - cultural assumptions" deals with those things that people take for granted, like I discussed above with the Diné. But right there in "=profile 1 - surface background" is "personality style" and "MBTI." Personality style in this case is a quick and dirty system I picked up from the work of Roger Dawson. MBTI is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.

Now I am not overly fond of unchanging definitions for people. I'm also suspicious of any system that purports to be the end-all of human experience. And the MBTI has been overused.

But I will also be the first to admit that the MBTI (and to a lessor extent, the Dawson personality styles) mostly work as a starting point.

Let me emphasize that. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator mostly works as a starting point.

The behaviors and attitudes that any human shows at a given time are highly subjective and dependent on context. A teenager's sex talk changes depending on if it happens in the locker room or at the family dinner table with the parents there.

Now, that tells us something. It's obvious to me because I have to work at the emotional stuff and I have to think about the way people think and react. The MBTI is the default program setting for the Robot. Depending on the stimulus, the MBTI may change a bit, but it is still preprogrammed responses.

I believe that most people go through life sleeping and let the Robot do the driving.

Which is fine if you don't want anything special. An ordinary life in an ordinary way.

Now the real challenge is to wake people up. And the best way I know to do that is to show the robot something that the programming can't handle. It could be a peak experience. It could be something totally new. But it shuts the robot down.

Behold the trickster's calling.

My thanks to Bear and Coyote, who made this post possible.
Posted: Tue - December 15, 2009 at 02:25 PM

blog comments powered by Disqus

Sunfell Tech Mage Rede Nine Words Serve The Tech Mage Best Keep What Works Fix What’s Broke Ditch The Rest

A narrow slice of life, but now and again pondering American neopaganism, modern adult pagans & the World.

2019       2018       2017       2016       2015       2014       2011       2010       2009       2008       2007       2006       2005