January 24, 2022
Why some question and others do not
Many people take their view of Reality from the world presented by the mainstream media. For others, however, the picture that is offered is nothing more than a Pseudo-Reality, a pale approximation of the truth. So, why do only some perceive the flaws in official narratives? Why are some ‘awake’ and others not?
One explanation comes from Professor Matthias Desmet, psychologist, who refers to ‘Mass formation psychosis’, a state of hypnotic stupor that he attributes to fear and anxiety. There is much here that strikes a chord while the media continue with their repetitive drumroll of fear and foreboding. The fear of failure, after all, forces children to accept years of relentless examinations and employees to compromise themselves to retain their employment, suffering high-handed management and unreasonable demands.
With this fear comes, as respected psychiatrist Dr David Hawkins revealed in his Map of Consciousness (2020), reduced ‘frequency levels’ (below ‘100’) that are only slightly above those associated with guilt (30), apathy (75) and grief (75). Contrast these low levels with those associated with courage (200), reason (400), love (500), joy (540) and peace (600), and you can see how debilitating fear is. This may sound a bit woo-woo, but Dr Hawkins had, at one time, the largest psychiatric practice in the US. Yet he moved away from it to focus on consciousness levels, after concluding that: “The amount of side effects that a doctor’s patients have depends on the consciousness of the doctor. It doesn’t depend on the medicine” (Dialogues, 30). He believed that the higher the physician’s level of consciousness, the more likely patients were to heal.
By way of a footnote, we should note that with many GP appointments now exclusively online (https://www.nhs.uk/nhs-services/gps/gp-appointments-and-bookings/), the beneficial frequencies attributed by Hawkins to certain doctors may not be able to work their magic so well, if at all. So much for medical progress.
Returning now to the topic of fear, we can easily see how this could arrest people’s critical faculties. However, this on its own is unlikely to explain people’s inability to look behind the curtain. For example, there are still large swathes of the world that still believe amateur pilots were responsible for the events on 9/11. Fear and anxiety are unlikely to be the reasons, 20 years on, for failing to probe the truth behind the attacks, since talk of terrorism is now largely out of the news. Another factor must be involved. What could this be?
If you scan the literature on conformity, you will come across the illusory truth effect, according to which the more we have been exposed to certain information, the more likely we are to believe that information. This is familiar to many of us from the words often attributed to Joseph Goebbels (1897-1945), Adolf Hitler’s Propaganda Minister in Nazi Germany, that: “If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes truth”. Familiarity is the cornerstone of advertising, creating ‘top of mind awareness’ and breeding trust among consumers. The message can be repeated across various media, online as well as offline, with what Edward Bernays, the father of modern PR, referred to as the ‘engineering of consent’ (1947) provided through graphics (on walls and walking surfaces), commentaries (using the printed word and audio-visual media) and public announcements (in shops and transport facilities).
A range of verbal effects can be used to strengthen the impact. These range from punchy brevity (Think different, Apple, 1997), alliteration (Fly the friendly skies, United Airlines, 1966) and the ‘rule of three’ (Just do it, Vorsprung Durch Technik, Beanz Meanz Heinz, Diamonds are forever). All have their parallels in the lexicon of Covid: from the brevity of ‘Stop Covid‘ to the rule of three in ‘Stay alert, control the virus, save lives’ and the alliterative flair of the ‘new normal’ and ‘clap the carers’. All follow the lessons of advertising. Yet, research shows that repetition may not actually improve comprehension, and there is evidence of a wearout effect over time (Alpert, Golden and Hoyer, 1983).
This links perhaps to informational conformity (Deutsch and Gerrard, 1955) – people’s tendency to conform because the issues are complex – which links in turn to decision fatigue (Baumeister, 2003) and cognitive load (Sweller, 2010), concepts in turn related to Nobel Laureate Kahneman’s description of people as cognitively lazy (2011). Our brains, so the argument goes, have evolved to conserve energy for ‘more important’ tasks; so when an intuitive decision can be made that is good enough, that will satisfice (Simon, 1957). A surplus of information (Dwyer, 2017) – which arguably people are experiencing two years into Covid – will cease to have a hypnotic effect.
We are left with just two factors. One is the tendency to conform in order to fit in (Deutsch and Gerrard, 1955), and the other is the tendency for convergent thinking (tendency towards only one well-defined answer) to be associated with a comfortable upbringing in early life (Terman and Oden, 1959). Indeed, if you think about it, being alive to anomalies in official narratives relies on the ability to detach from the mainstream. We know that early experience of being different (whether through illness, family loss or other major life events) can have this effect, but could personality play a part in this too?
Divergent thinking and personality
There have been few clues as to the factors that encourage divergent thinking (tendency to spot numerous options) – the kind of thinking we find in awake people. However, an opportunity arose to administer the world’s most-used personality test, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) test, to people attending events where critical thinking was applied to mainstream thinking. An accumulated databank of information allows people’s responses to be compared with countrywide and occupational data, and what was revealed from this small study was astonishing. Before unveiling the results, a word about the test.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® test
The MBTI® was the creation of Katharine Briggs and her daughter, Isabel Briggs Myers. As early as her teenage years, Katharine started observing human behaviour to better understand how personality affected people’s ability to be a good parent, teacher or student. Working with her daughter, they discovered that their findings were consistent with those of the psychologist Carl Jung (Meyers, 2006). So his categories are used in the four dichotomous forms of perception that underpin the test. These dichotomous forms yield 16 different types, and data across large samples is shown in what are termed ‘Type tables’. More of this later, but first some words on the test’s validity and reliability.
In terms of whether the test measures what it claims to measure (the ‘validity’), there is strong support that it does measure Jung’s types (Chen & Miao, 2007). Where reliability is concerned, studies have shown that, on average, 92% of adults who retook the test received the same four Jungian classifications (ibid). The MBTI® is a forced-choice test, and people who have completed it are recommended to read descriptions of the type closest to the 4-letter description arrived at by the test and decide whether that type feels like a better fit. If it does, that will be the type to go with.
So, for readers who have not undertaken the test, the best advice would be to take the official MBTI® test or if you are looking for a proxy result, you could try one of the free online tests (for example, here is one that takes no more than minutes to complete http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp). Then you can read the thumbnail descriptions here https://www.myersbriggs.org/my-mbti-personality-type/mbti-basics/the-16-mbti-types.htm and the longer ones here https://careerassessmentsite.com/tests/myers-briggs-tests/about-the-myers-briggs-type-indicator/the-16-myers-briggs-personality-types/ and decide whether the 4-letters delivered by the test, or perhaps a neighbouring combination, provide the best match.
Now we move on to what the MBTI® measures – and it might be best to refrain from reading this until you have completed the test (if you feel that you are awake, please share your results in the comments below this article)! The first of the four letters will be E or I and refers to whether you take your energy from within (Introvert) or without (Extrovert). The second letter, S or N, refers to how you perceive the world. Is the world that you inhabit extensively that of the five senses – you relish activity, eye-catching visuals, culinary delights, exciting aromas (this would make you a ‘Sensing’ type) – or are you excited more by the world of possibilities and what could be rather than what currently prevails (this would make you an ‘iNtuitive’ type).
This brings us to the final two letters. The third letter, T or F, refers to whether you make decisions through the use principally of logic (the custom of the ‘Thinking’ type) or whether your decisions are driven by the use of logic and feelings (the trait of the ‘Feeling’ type). The final one of the four letters, J or P, also refers to decision-making. Will you collect a great deal of information before making a decision (the hallmark of the ‘Perception’, or P type), or will you satisfy yourself with a minimum amount of data (the norm of the ‘Judgement’ or J type)? Also, do you complete tasks ahead of deadline (the tendency of the J type) or leave things to the last minute, catching trains by a whisper (the habit of the P type)?
No type is inferior or superior to any other type, but distinct groupings of the four letters can be found in certain industries, occupations and countries. These are shown in the next section, before unveiling the findings regarding awake people.
Types by country, industry and occupation
There are strong differences in types by country. In Mexico, the US and the UK for example, the Sensing type represents 75%, 69% and 63% of the populations respectively, with iNtuitive types forming the balance (see https://typologytriad.wordpress.com/mbti-population-by-country/). Then, there’s the combination of iNtuitive and Feeling (NF), one that produces an acute sense of injustice together with idealism; the proportions present in different countries is shown in Table 1 below :
Table 1: proportion of NFs by country
If we turn to industry and occupational groups, then Table 2 below shows types amongst managers in the UK:
If we turn to industry and occupational groups, then Table 2 below shows types amongst managers in the UK:
Table 2: MBTI® types of managers in the UK
As you can be seen, there are more than three times as many NFs amongst the ‘awake’ respondents as in the general UK population, with their proportion constituting close on to three quarters of the sample. Compare this with the NFs in the large sample of UK managers where they made up a meagre 8.4% of the sample. Remember that we saw NFs’ tendency to work in a warm and enthusiastic manner, focussing on ideas and possibilities, particularly ‘possibilities for people’. We saw how their near-absence in a sample of British managers is shutting down a source of new ideas and people interested in developing others.
Anyone attending the Questioning Science/ Questioning History conferences or Stand in the Park events will be familiar with the effervescent curiosity that typifies the people at these events. This curiosity differentiates them from many in the population who unquestioningly acquiesce to authority. The many who report neighbours for flouting Covid rules, sport masks in their cars or patiently line up for jabs are examples.
We know that 62% of the UK population are Sensing and it may be challenging for many of this type to question the official narrative – particularly when it is supported by eye-catching graphics and well turned-out TV presenters. Interestingly, the profile of military personnel in the US shows a similar proportion of Sensing types (Williams, 1999), and since US and UK profiles are not dissimilar, and since the profiles of the military and the police are likely to be similar, one could imagine that a similar proportion of the police are Sensing. Perhaps change in law enforcement and military can only come from the 40% iNtuitive types in those sectors.
Society appears divided between those who question accepted wisdom and those who do not. A survey of the personality types of those attending events where the critical evaluation of mainstream ideas is at a premium shows close on 74% of respondents having an iNtuitive and Feeling element to their personalities. This high proportion is in contrast to the general UK population where these NF personality types represent only 22.6% of types.
It follows that the reluctance to question mainstream narratives may have less to do with the hypnotic effects of the fear agenda than to the absence of iNtuitive and Feeling elements in the personality. Indeed, it could be that a combination of Sensing and Thinking – a combination present in 77% of the British population – produces a lesser willingness to question or explore new avenues. If so, this would suggest that Sensing and Thinking types are likely to change their views only when the official narrative shifts and respected authority figures present them with new truths. Meanwhile, the drive to shift society in directions that benefit the majority rests with the minority of iNtuitive and Feeling types who appear to find it easier to see beyond the possibilities presented by the establishment.
If you would like to contribute to a short survey of the characteristics of
awake people that’s currently being run by the Truth University (and get emailed results later if you’re interested), please do complete it by clicking here.
Following several years in industry as a Training Manager in blue-chip companies, Gloria Moss PhD FCIPD moved to academia where she has worked as a Professor of Management and Marketing. She is the author of six books and over seventy peer-reviewed conference and journal papers. She runs Questioning History and Questioning Science conferences, with the next Questioning Science conference scheduled for August 2022. For information on all this, see www.learningholidays.webs.com and email email@example.com
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Chen, J., & Miao, D. (2007). Introduction to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. US-China Education Review, 4(3), 44-53
Department for Business Innovation and Skills (2012), A summary of the evidence for the value of investing in leadership and management development, https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/32327/12-923-leadership-management-key-to-sustainable-growth-evidence.pdf, accessed on 17 January 2022
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Moss, G. (2019), Inclusive Leadership, Abingdon, Routledge
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Williams, D,L. (1999), Frequencies of Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) among military leaders, Journal of Leadership and Organizational Studies, 5 (3), 50-56
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