Author Archives: Steve Myers

Can Psychological Type be a Barrier to Individuation?

This article was first published in ‘TypeFace’, the quarterly magazine of the British Association for Psychological Type (BAPT), Vol. 25(4), 14-18, and is reproduced here with the permission of BAPT

Introduction

It is a widely held belief that Isabel Briggs Myers’ type theory is very similar to C.G. Jung’s, and that he endorsed her development of the MBTI® instrument. However, Jung had serious concerns about the popular presentation of his theory (Myers 2012a) and the letter apparently supporting Isabel Briggs Myers was not written by him and did not reflect his opinion (Myers 2012b). Jung expressed his attitude elsewhere by saying “God preserve me from my friends” (Jung 1957, p. 304) and felt the main point of his theory was being missed:

Typology [is] only one side of my book… Most readers have not noticed [the gravamen] of the book because they are first of all led into the temptation of classifying everything typologically, which in itself is a pretty sterile undertaking. (Jung 1935)

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PhD Research into Religious Tolerance

Help wanted!

For the past few years, I have been pursuing some PhD research into the relationship between personality and mythology. The overall aim is to find ways of promoting religious tolerance. It is based on Jung’s analytical psychology and is now in the final stretch.

I would appreciate your help by completing four online questionnaires, which will take about 30 minutes in total. When you have finished, there will be a report in the form of a PDF file, or Ebook, or you can read the results online. There is more information about the research on the page that introduces the questionnaires, at https://research.myers.co. Thank you, in advance.

If you have any questions or comments, please use my contact page (above).

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The Lost Art of Disagreement


In Jung’s last work on the theory of psychological types, published posthumously, he introduced the topic by writing:

“A sane and normal society is one in which people habitually disagree” (Jung 1964, p. 46).

Jung didn’t say (here) why individual disagreements are important to society, but the reasons are evident from many of his writings from 1914 onwards, when he started formulating his theories about “the process of becoming” (Jung 1914, p. 183).

Constructive disagreement is a vital part of Jung’s process of individual and cultural development and it reduces conflict in societal or international relations. This may seem counter-intuitive, but it is a natural corollary of Jung’s theories of individuation and collective compensation. I’ll start by explaining these aspects of Jung’s theories, and then conclude with some practical guidelines on what it means to disagree constructively.

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Journalistic Myth-Making Live

My jaw dropped when I started reading The Independent’s review of the Mansion House speech yesterday morning. On the front page of their website they showed a picture of George Osborne, the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, in full flow delivering his speech. Alongside was a headline that said “£1,400 a year from UK’s 3.7m poorest families: Osborne reveals who cuts will hit”.

Wow, I thought. How could Osborne follow up Cameron’s “one nation” speech by telling a group of highly-paid financiers that he was going to cut benefits for the poor?

Then something strange happened. When I returned to the home page some time later, the headline had changed. It now read: “£1,400 a year from UK’s 3.7m poorest families: Is this where Osborne’s cuts will hit?” In the early afternoon, I returned to The Independent home page a third time. This time the headline had been removed altogether, but older stories were still there.

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Why Labour Lost – A Jungian Perspective

The 2015 election results are in, and they are full of shocks:

  • Three party leaders resigned before all the results had been announced.
  • The Tories’ victory was contrary to the consistent message of all the pre-election polls.
  • Labour suffered their most crushing defeat for 30 years.
  • In Scotland there was a rout by the SNP.
  • UKIP gained 12.6% of the votes but only 0.15% of the seats.

C.G. Jung’s analytical psychology can offer a useful perspective on these results, one that might help voters and parties alike in their preparations for the 2020 election.

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