The structure of psychosophy (is often abbreviated to AP, the acronym for “attitudinal psyche”) was first described by the author of typology, russian writer Alexander Afanasiev, in his book “Syntax of Love”. The fundamental basis in psychosophy is a model, represented by four functions, set by unique combinations of three pairs of properties.
The task of the function is to process one of the four psychosophic aspects such as “Physics” (F), “Volition” (V), “Emotion” (E) and “Logic” (L). Each aspect can be processed by one function only. Thus, the four aspects are distributed over all positions of the model. In total, twenty-four unique combinations of aspects and functions come out – each of them represents its own unique psychosophic type (abbreviated as “AP-type”). For example, there is a type of “Einstein” (written as “LVEF”) – it has First Logic, Second Volition, Third Emotion and Fourth Physics. If you swap any two aspects (move from one function to another), you will get a new type.
Aspects in psychosophy
As already mentioned, psychosophy considers four aspects: “Emotion” (E), “Logic” (L), “Volition” (V) and “Physics” (F). According to Afanasiev, they describe the corresponding states of a person’s “soul”, “mind”, “spirit” and “body”. Unfortunately, these terms are obviously not enough to fully disclose the content of the aspects, and they are more likely to cause additional distortion of meaning than lead to a correct understanding.
Psychosophy (as a psychological typology) studies the process of interaction of people with each other by passing on their aspect states. The character of such interaction is defined by properties of functions of AP-type model, and its filling – by properties of the aspect state perceived by function. Thus, with the help of Emotion we exchange emotions and feelings, with the help of Logic – opinions and perceptions, with the help of Volition – desires and goals, and with the help of Physics – realization of physical needs.
As the subject area of each aspect corresponds to its own plane (which does not intersect with other aspects) the behavior of people can be divided into discrete manifestations of each of them. In addition, there may be polyaspectal situations that affect the planes of different interactions. Thus, for example, dancing can be considered both as physical interaction (need for movement) and emotional interaction (exchange of emotions with a partner and viewers).
Let’s consider in more detail what relates to each of the aspects:
The perception of the “Physics” aspect includes the qualities and processes associated with satisfying the needs of our body, roughly speaking, with everything that comes with the physical interaction of a person with the environment. The position of this aspect in the model of AP-type is expressed in the way of life of a person, in his taste preferences, in the presence or absence of interest in sports and physical activity, in relation to the person’s diet and cooking, health and hygiene. Also, Physics determines the greed or generosity of a person, his attitude to property and money, behavior in the intimate sphere, indirectly affects the constitution and appearance of the person.
The perception of the “Volition” aspect includes qualities and processes that affect the plane of our intention, which we implement when setting and achieving desires and goals. Carriers of different volitions differ from each other by different approaches to the realization of their intentions. Depending on the position of this aspect in the AP-type model, a person may help or wait for help, be aimed at sharing responsibility and compromises or at individual realization of their desires and goals (“each for himself”). Also, Volition influences the way a person makes decisions, whether they do so on their own or rely on advice.
The perception of the “Emotion” aspect includes interactions such as exchanging emotions with the other person, tweaking or ignoring other people’s feelings, sharing one’s experiences with others, acting and the self-expression, dependence or independence from one’s own feelings, and the ability to empathise. The position of Emotion influences a person’s attitude towards poetry and visual arts, preferences in film and music, and the ability to feel the audience and viewers.
Perception of the “Logic” aspect includes processes related to the formation and exchange of opinions and knowledge. The position of this aspect influences our ability to argue and discuss, our independence in forming our point of view, our ability to understand the position of the other person, our ability to change our opinion as new facts and information appear. Also, for example, some “logics” tend to be more guided by their own conclusions, while others – by the opinion of authoritative sources.
Properties of functions in psychosophy
As it was mentioned earlier, the model of psychosophic type is a set of four functions. Each of these functions is defined by a combination of three properties that characterize certain qualities of its work. Thus, a function can be subjective or objective, conscious or unconscious and introverted or extraverted.
The subjective function forms its state independently and does not give in to the influence of other people in its aspect sphere. In addition, it tries to influence someone else’s state from the aspect point of view. In turn, the objective function gives in to the influence of others in its aspect sphere, even if it does not want it to, and it does not have sufficient ability to influence other people on the aspect.
Unconscious function defines a person’s low concentration on his or her aspect state, its displacement, which is why the person is not able to contribute much energy to the interaction on this aspect. Such functions strive for a stable state, which will allow them not to concentrate on the aspect once again. A conscious function, on the contrary, determines a person’s high concentration on the aspect, which is why a lot of energy is allocated to it for self-realization. Such functions tend to constantly change the aspect state, as well as to interact with other people and receive “feedback”.
The introverted function determines the importance of the aspect state for a person and the interest in its changing/maintaining in himself. In turn, the extraverted function determines the interest in another person’s aspect state and the focus on changing/ maintaining it in him or her.
Functions in psychosophy
Thus, the combination of these properties sets the functions of the Afanasiev’s model. Let’s consider their main qualities of work:
The First Function is subjective, unconscious and introverted. For this function the own aspect state is priority (though the person does not realize it enough as it is displaced from sphere of his or her attention). Avoiding its frequent changes (in order not to concentrate on it once again), each person tries to maintain stability of the aspect state according to his or her First Function. In addition, this state is weakly influenced by the surrounding people – its change usually occurs when the person himself wants it. At the same time, the first function is characterized by the aspiration (first of all, in one’s own interests) to influence other people through the aspect.
The Second Function is subjective, conscious and extraverted. This function determines the high interest of the bearer of the type to the aspect state of other people and the aspiration to influence it. The aspect which is on the position of the Second Function is realized in full measure and is constantly in the sphere of attention of the person. In this connection, the Second Function tries to provoke changes in the aspect state (first of all, in someone else’s state) in order to fill with it his or her attention. At the same time, the bearer of the type weakly gives in to the influence of others, being independent in the formation of his or her aspect state of Second Function. Thus, this function determines the zone of a person’s free creativity: its consciousness gives a lot of energy to realize itself on this aspect, and its extraversion nature makes it invulnerable to criticism.
The Third Function is objective, conscious and introverted. This function (like the Second one) defines the constant concentration on its aspect state. Therefore, a person needs to fill in his or her attention with stable changes of the aspect state. At the same time, the Third Function prioritizes its own aspect state, so its attention is more focused on changes in itself. Also, this function is noticeably influenced (even if it does not want to). For this reason, bearers of this type tend to concentrate on minimizing undesired and maximizing desired effects on themselves. It is important to note that the Third Function contains the maximum potential for human development: its introversion determines the attention to one’s ambitions, and consciousness gives a sufficient amount of energy for their realization.
The Fourth Function is objective, unconscious and extraverted. This function has a minimal need for interaction in its aspect state, and at the same time it tends to be influenced by other people. As a result, not having high requirements to itself, it is guided by the inquiries on the aspect state, coming from other people.