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Aligned Signs Blog

Who is Carl Jung? And the Importance behind Getting to Know Yourself

Who is Carl Jung? And the Importance behind Getting to Know Yourself

By Aligned Signs (694 words)
Posted in Myers-Briggs® on March 20, 2014

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In psychological study, Carl Jung is a famous name because he founded analytical psychology. The well-known Swiss psychiatrist proposed and developed the concepts that were later extrapolated into the
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) ®. The MBTI® is widely used today in knowing personality types of people to understand and even predict their behaviors under different situations. The indicator has gained wide regard among common people as well and it is becoming normal practice to know the MBTI® type of other person for more fruitful communication and increased compatibility.

Carl Jung was a practicing psychiatrist with a versatile personality. The MBTI® personality inventory evolved initially from Jung's interactions with his patients. Apart from his profession, he explored quite a range of subjects ranging from eastern & western philosophy to arts & literature to astrology and even alchemy.

Carl Jung's typological theories were first published in his 1921 book, Psychological Types. At its core is the idea that any individual integrates various opposite concepts; like introversion and extraversion for example. No one is a complete introvert or a complete extrovert, but everyone lies somewhere on the arc defined by these two extremes.

He strongly believed in the process of ‘individuation’, defined as the process by which people are formed and differentiated from others. It is a concept which is now at the heart of modern civilization.

It is because of this uniqueness in humans that it is vital to have a high sense of self-awareness. Too often one is dragged by the forces of society into pursuing ideals, professions and even friends without understanding his or her inner motivations and drives.


There are a lot of resources available now to help you know yourself better. Personality matching websites and tools like the MBTI® are one example; models like the Triarchic theory of intelligence and the Mental Self Government are others.

The Triarchic model considers three aspects as pillars of intelligence:

  1. Analytical Intelligence which helps in solving puzzles, problems, tests and completing academics.
  2. Synthetic Intelligence which helps deal with new and strange situations through creative ideas.
  3. Practical Intelligence which helps a person deal with daily life through effective solutions.

For too long humans have given more respect to the first of these, i.e. the analytical intelligence. Creative and street smart people may feel left out or not given their due inspite of their innovative ability. Infact in IQ tests, people having a higher portion of synthetic and practical intelligence might end up giving seemingly incorrect answers due to their own perspectives.

In effect, you need to understand your own distinctive strengths and channel them rather than dwell on weaknesses pointed out by traditional tests.

Mental Self Government model helps you understand thought processes by comparing functions, forms and scope of mental management with those of governments of nations.


 Functions of the mind:

  1. Legislative – Coming up with a plan
  2. Executive – How to go about implementing a plan
  3. Judicial – Making comparisons


  1. Monarchic – A monarchic person works best when focussed on one goal
  2. Hierarchic – A hierarchic person can focus on many goals and even prioritize them.
  3. Oligarchic – An oligarchic person can focus on many goals but finds it difficult to prioritize.
  4. Anarchic – An anarchic person likes to operate outside the defined rules and regulations, he or she often comes up with their innovative solutions.


  1. Internal – The person favors being with self.
  2. External – The person favors being with other people.


In face of common stereotypes, it is tough to make sense of your individuality. But this difficult step needs to be crossed with the help available. Because only then can you have truly fulfilling relationships, work passionately towards your real ambitions and be at peace with yourself.

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