Are Some People Hard-Wired to Believe in God?

Have you always believed in a higher spiritual power; a being who, for some reason we can’t really fathom, created and loves us and will provide a glorious home for our souls after we die? Perhaps you feel that you are seeing this being’s handiwork every time you look at an intricate flower or snowflake, or see breathtaking mountain scenery. To you it makes perfectly logical sense that the existence of such marvels in our world is evidence of a powerful, loving creator who is responsible for them.

But your beliefs mesh with those of your family like the colors orange and red when they touch each other in a modern painting. When you express your beliefs your relatives roll their eyes at what they think is no more than a silly notion. What logic can be found in the idea that a supreme being created the world around us, and how could an educated person believe in one? To them it makes far more sense and is easier to believe that our environment and everything in it came into being by chance. After all, how can anyone believe in something that can’t be seen?

Or perhaps you’re a keen observer of current events and history, and while you find them to be fascinating, you are baffled by the idea that they form some type of pattern. You just can’t fathom some people’s apparent need to ascribe the events of history to some powerful, invisible hand moving people around like pieces on a chessboard. You believe that events are nothing more than randomly placed, isolated dots and that the invisible line your friends see connecting them to create patterns of the past leading to the present and future is just nonsense. You see coincidences while your friends see purpose.

Do you call yourself spiritual, but not in the sense of most people you know? You are confused by the attraction some people feel for organized religion, to worship with others inside a building. Isn’t it just as meaningful to worship by yourself under a tree? Or maybe you don’t believe in a traditional God at all, but do believe there is something out there working behind the scenes and giving life to all things. Sadly, though, it seems like everyone around you believes in the God of church and Sunday School and insist on worshiping him in the traditional way.

Do any of these scenarios touch a nerve? Sometimes it seems to me like there are as many forms of spirituality as there are human beings. Some people just seem wired to believe in the unseen, to the bewilderment of those who lack that special wiring, don’t they? Why does faith in a supreme being seem to come naturally to some people, who believe they see his hand wherever they go? Equally puzzling is the question of why some find it impossible to detect the presence of a supernatural force, no matter how much beauty they experience or how many amazing or even miraculous events they witness.

Of course, there could be many reasons for such differences in viewpoint. But could it be that one of the factors in our spirituality, our inclination to see or not see a higher power at work behind the scenes of our lives and of the world in general, is personality type? Have you ever wondered what role your type preferences might play in your beliefs or lack thereof?

I’m certainly not the first person to ponder the mysteries of our spiritual makeup! In a study of 3,036 people, although the majority of each type answered that they do believe in a higher power, interesting differences in belief were found among types. The top ranking types who said they definitely did not believe in a higher power were:

  • INTJ (23.1% say they do not believe)
  • ENTJ (14.6%)
  • INTP (11.1%)
  • ISTP (9.9%)

The top ranking types who said they were “not sure” were:

  • ISTP (19.2% “not sure”)
  • INTP (16.2%)
  • ENTP (14.6%)
  • ENTJ (14.6%)

Finally the top ranking types who said they did believe in a higher power were:

  • ENFJ (91.4% do believe)
  • ESFJ (90.2%)
  • ENFP (89.8%)
  • ISFJ (89.7%)

As you can see, INTP, ISTP and ENTJ are on both the “no” and “not sure” lists.1

Notice that all the types in the first two categories have a preference for Thinking and all but one also prefer Intuition. In contrast, all the types listed in the “yes” column show a preference for Feeling, and three fourths of them also prefer Extraversion and Judging.

Wow, this sounds pretty interesting! Is there a connection between personality type and spirituality? If so, what? Is it possible that our type preferences actually cause our particular brand of spirituality, or is it a coincidence that so many NTs, for example, are not religious?

There is much more to us than our personality types, of course. Factors such as our families, how we were raised, our cultural background, what type and level of education we had, and personal experiences will all have an effect on our religious beliefs and practices. But I believe there is a connection between type and spirituality and that it’s not a coincidence. Many type practitioners would agree. In fact among the Interest Areas offered by the Association for Psychological Type International to its members is one called Religion and Spirituality.

Personality type can affect both the nature of our faith, if any, and our preferred methods of feeding and expressing it. With preferences for INFJ, belief in a higher power has always come naturally to me. I was not raised in a Christian home, but after studying the Bible and attending church while in college, I became a nondenominational Christian. It seems that all I need is to drive up Interstate 10W while drinking in the serene Texas Hill Country views to remind me of my conviction that God exists and of how powerful and loving He is.

In contrast to how natural it is to some of us, the “no” and “not sure” categories show us that a preference for Thinking is apparently related to a decreased likelihood of belief in a higher power. This may be because the Thinking preference is more likely to look at traditional religious beliefs with a critical and analytical eye. When added to the mix, Perceiving may play a role in openness to off-the-beaten-path beliefs and viewpoints.

Feeling types seem to see things differently, especially FJs which make up three fourths of the “yes” category on the table. With preferences for Feeling and Judging, once I found what I was seeking in the spiritual realm, Christianity, I was no longer very open to new beliefs. While I am open to learning new things about Christianity, I am not open to a wholesale switch to a different belief system.

It is reported by the Center for Applications of Psychological Type, Inc. in their 1996 table “Estimated Frequencies of the Types in the United States Population,” that 65% to 70% of the U.S. male population has a preference for Thinking. Perhaps the critical, questioning nature of Thinkers has something to do with the fact that, according to Church for Men, only 39% of a typical church membership in the U.S. is male. Perhaps these are the Feeling type men?

A male friend from my church with INTP preferences enjoys focusing on the similarities between religions more than their differences. He told me that in regard to religion, it’s “...hard to settle on any one thing,” whether it be a denomination or major religion. This is thanks to his Thinking preference imbuing him with such a strong need for facts, and his preference for Perceiving convincing him that anything can be true until proven wrong. He believes that INTPs need to experience God for themselves. In contrast, another friend told me that her preferences for ESFJ fit “very neatly into Christianity.”

Personality type might not only be related to whether someone attends an organized worship service at all, but also to whether he or she chooses to stay with the group being worshiped with. People who prefer Introversion might be more comfortable in smaller houses of worship than those who prefer Extraversion, for instance. People who prefer Thinking, like my INTP friend, might prefer a style of preaching that, rather than just presenting facts, resembles a debate where a statement is made for worshipers to respond to, leaving things up to their own interpretation. According to my friend, this energizes listeners more and gives them more to digest.

Of course, worship has personal, as well as social components. There are many aspects of personal worship which may especially appeal to different types as well. A friend with ISFJ preferences and Catholic beliefs has delved deeply into several extensive forms of prayer. With preferences for INFJ, I particularly enjoy good Christian literature, both fiction and nonfiction. But someone with a preference for Extraversion might find the disciplines enjoyed by my friend and I to be cruel and unusual punishment rather than worship.

My friend with ESFJ preferences, mentioned above, stated that “My favorite spiritual disciplines are worship and service and in-depth study. I struggle with solitude and other disciplines that require a significant amount of alone time, with no possibility for interaction. (Bible study helps me to teach others about God which means even when it’s a solitary activity it has an ‘E’ end goal).”

These are just a few flakes in the snowdrift of spiritual beliefs and practices. Sometimes we may shake our heads and wonder just what it is about a belief or practice that could possibly be meaningful or attractive to anyone. We may be just as likely to shake our heads in amazement when we see how many types of spirituality there are and how many types of personalities. Coincidence? I think not! Connection? Definitely! Cause? Maybe…

Tell me what you think. I’d love to hear!

 

1. Source:  MBTI® Manual. Myers, Isabel Briggs, Mary H. McCaulley, Naomi L. Quenk and Allen L. Hammer. Mountain View, CA: CPP, Inc. Table on p. 238, “Top-Ranked Types Rating ‘No,’ ‘Not Sure,’ or ‘Yes’ Regarding Belief in a Higher Spiritual Power.”

Gayle Weinraub

A native of New England, Gayle Weinraub has worked in the educational assessment industry in San Antonio, TX since 1995. She first learned about personality type in 1989, became certified to use the Myers–Briggs Type Indicator® assessment in 1998, and has maintained a Web site and blog about personality type since February 2013. When not writing blogs about personality type or searching for what she calls blog food (the ideas and observations which will hopefully eventually turn into blogs), she can usually be found enjoying Volksmarches (a sport involving 10K walks), music, art, reading, movies, stamp collecting, photography, cross–stitch, and her Orange Tabby, Periwinkle. Her type preferences are INFJ.

Comments

Tony S (not verified) says...

I am an ISTJ - known to be primarily a "give me the facts" type.

If the "facts" are simply a number of events in various ancient books, the contents of which cannot be proved by scientific (factual) means, then they do not qualify as facts at all! Science has produced loads and loads and loads of facts in the centuries since these ancient tomes appeared, most of which contradict the contents of these ancient books of myths. Science (and all the attached factual logic) can also produce no evidence of any deity existing out there - which is why believers need "faith" and "trust", not reason, to support their beliefs.

As long as these believers do no harm, I have no problem with that (my wife is a practising Buddhist, and a remarkably considerate and totally decent and caring individual). But I am a convinced sceptic, a "hard" atheist - and at the same time a typical ISTJ.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment Tony.

michael (not verified) says...

I  am an ENFP just took the test and took it a long time ago, i teeter on the F/T as i'm a 50/50 right left brainer. The way I would respond to your notion above would be that facts are of the physical realm which is encapsulated within Gods realm therefore God sets the barriers and we are only able at a maximum to use the physical evidence to confirm, but never deny God is real. Physical reality which are your definition of facts create situations of infalsifiability, where people state "oh there's no scientific explaination for God, so he is not real", if there is a God then he created the very "facts" we are trying to use to disprove him - it's a paradox. Now on the contrary, there is no science to "Prove" God, neuroplasticity...that IMO is the closest intersect of faith and science to date

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment, Michael.

AKMixx (not verified) says...

"The way I would respond to your notion above would be that facts are of the physical realm which is encapsulated within Gods realm therefore God sets the barriers and we are only able at a maximum to use the physical evidence to confirm, but never deny God is real."

Begging the question fallacy, you're positing that god exists in claiming that facts are "within god's realm". Prove first that god exists before claiming the above quotations, else it's just circular reasoning.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thank you for your comment, AK.

Moe Cabrera (not verified) says...

Just curious here,
As an INFJ myself I noticed that my personality type was not listed...
Ironically and (I realize that this is solely theoretical) Jesus is considered an INFJ - judging by His way of being while on the earth.

Was wasn't the INFJ type listed?

Gayle Weinraub says...

INFJ is not listed since it is not in the top four of any category, as I explained in my reply to everyone. As to WHY it isn't in the top four of any category, "yes" in particular, I don't know! That does seem odd. The other types had a higher percentage of believers no doubt, but we don't know where INFJ fell on the total list of all 16 types.

Moe.cabreralll says...

That's pretty interesting....

Michael S. (not verified) says...

It seems to me that, among INFJs that I have encountered on the internet, there are more skeptics, agnostics, and those on the fence about religion than religious INFJs. Most of them cite their need to ask questions/to explore/be a seeker as the reason they don't subscribe to religion. So I'm not surprised that INFJs are not in the top four, though they're probably high on the list.

Remember, Introverted Thinking is used extensively by INFJs, especially as they get older. And I believe that is one of the main reasons so many INFJs are skeptics. We tend to read between the lines a lot and to be analytical as well as imaginative. Plus, I've noticed that a lot of "non-believing" INFJs have been hurt or betrayed by the church.

I am myself an INFJ, and an associate pastor of a Baptist church. I would guess that my congregation is mostly ISFJs and ISTJs. One of the elders is most likely ESFJ, and my wife is an INFP. Both my wife and I are a little out of place, in one sense, but in another sense, our type makes no difference.

For most of my life, I did not belong to any particular religion, though I was always interested in spiritual things. But now, it has become my all-encompassing passion. I will be taking over as pastor next October, Lord willing, as my pastor plans to retire then, and though I will miss him being my pastor, I'm ready for the challenge.

Personally, I find it a great fit to be a pastor who's an INFJ. The biggest challenge is socializing and making sure to speak clearly and loudly when preaching a sermon. Other than that, it's a natural fit, and in my experience, it seems that many pastors are INFJ, and ISFJ, as well as the more extraverted types you'd expect.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your thoughtful comment, Michael. Best wishes to you!

alsie (not verified) says...

i'm a fellow infj, so I thought i'd share a few thoughts. I'm personally an agnostic. I kinda struggled with the idea of sticking strongly to one religon and it's own beliefs because I like discovering and making observations on things myself and making a decision on my opinion based upon that.I also struggle to see connections between God and how he intervenes in the world, so I've denied the idea of a thiestic God. Because INFJs having both intution and feeling, they can get fully into the spritual emotional side to religion if they rely on that to make decisions. I personally use both logical based on observations and my own intution to make decisions on things, which is what led me to rejecting.

So with us INFJs, we're really the same but different in a way. We have so much aspects of our nature, and I think decisions on religion are based upon what aspect of our nature we lean towards the most.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment, Alsie. Rereading it just now makes me wonder what your Preference Clarity Indices are like on Intuition and Feeling. If they are slight or moderate, as opposed to clear or very clear, I think that might explain a lot of your viewpoint. On the other hand the spiritual experiences of an INFJ like myself whose preferences are clear might be different.

Indra (not verified) says...

Wonder how God intervene to this world?

I have my own answer, He intervene just if He want to, the rest of it are done by system...

in the 6 days of creation, God create system, both the visible and the invisible, including time system (calculated by the rotation of planet toward sun), also the laws ( physic, gravity, karma, etc..) all based on His wisdom, so everything will work as it should be.

Did he knows everything that happened in this universe? Sure, He is the creator, the admin of the entire galaxy, so even a little thing happened will send Him a ‘notification’. He know everything but He doesn’t always involved directly in everything

So, if everything can be done by system, should He intervene to this life every single time? Not necessary..

He intervene just if He want to, and based on His wisdom and mercy..not because of His duty.

I think the sign of God’s intervene is when miracle happened, something that was beyond our understanding, even seems it against the natural science, and we call it supernatural, that was the time He show up! everything can happened if He intervene, just like the admin of game server, He can revive the dead, or kill the living one, we are just a players..

seems I’ve wrote too long, I can explain any longer about this topic, because it interesting and made me curious

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hello Indra, thank you for your comment! I agree that when the supernatural happens, we could say that God has shown up. That's a good way of putting it! I also agree this is an interesting topic. Thanks for taking the time to read my article.

Keren Batiyov (not verified) says...

Where are the INFPs?

Gayle Weinraub says...

We don't know - see my comment to everyone.

Rob G (not verified) says...

We are too busy out wandering around with God and the butterflies to answer the question. Or maybe we are just people and butterflies wandering around without God. We aren't fixed; unless we are! Then by God we are sure we know--unless you disagree, and then we'll at least hear out your position, and likely accept it as OKish even if we disagree.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment Rob.

Janet H Mills (not verified) says...

I echo the question. Where are the INFPs?

Gayle Weinraub says...

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hi Janet, thanks for reading and commenting! In case you missed it, I've copied and pasted the answer I gave to your question when I first wrote the article.

6 months 3 weeks ago

Hello everyone, and thanks for all your comments! It will take me a while to read them all but in the meantime I've noticed that several of you are asking about your type if it was not included in the study I cited about belief in God. First, my apologies as the credit I gave to the study got omitted from the article. It is from the MBTI(R) Manual on p. 238. The table only shows the top four types for each category, "No", "Not Sure", or "Yes" regarding belief in a higher spiritual power. If your type is not listed in this article, it simply means it was not in the top four for any of the categories. No further information about where the other types rank is provided in the manual.

Lynn Hinderaker (not verified) says...

As the millennials emerge as a dominant cultural influence, I sense an interest in a "new consciousness," especially insofar as 1) work and 2) spirituality is concerned.

The need for personal growth and financial growth are fusing. This is changing what it means to have a company, employ people and create an internal culture.

I believe that the INFP and the ENFP personality types are uniquely suited to injecting new ideas about the value of personal growth - including spirituality - into the workplace.

What do the experts in personality typing think about this?

Gayle Weinraub says...

I don't know, but the idea makes sense to me. Thanks for your comment!

Karen Shaver (not verified) says...

I am ISFJ and do not subscribe to organized religion. I am more spiritual and believe in a force in the universe that effects the universe. Some call it God, others call it Nature. I fall into the nature category. Does Nature=God???

Gayle Weinraub says...

I certainly see God when I am out in nature (I do a lot of walking) but believe He is more than that. That's a good question to explore, Karen.

Conor Cook (not verified) says...

As an INTP Catholic, I know most about the Catholic Church. I find that its 2000 year history of deep thinking and evangelistic outreach have given it something for everyone, if they are willing to look. A Church with St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Francis can appeal to a variety of types, both T and F, N and S. The liturgy, especially, provides ample space for both thinking and feeling with the readings, orations, and homilies, while also giving a strong preference (in traditional liturgies) for the senses, allowing the participant a chance to engage their personal perceiving function. As I mentioned, I am an INTP, but I find both the beauty of the Church's liturgy (done well) and the depth and thoroughness of its rational thought (exemplified by the aforementioned Aquinas) to be aspects that appeal to my personality. I do find, however, that my faith is largely intellectual, so the Church challenges me to feel the presence of God more. My ESFJ wife is attracted to the beautiful and intellectual Church, but she also is much better at feeling her faith and the demands it makes on her charity.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your wonderful comment Conor! I have a Catholic friend who years ago gave me a book called Prayer and Temperament:Different Prayer Forms for Different Personality Types by Chester P. Michael and Marie C. Norrisey. It was published in 1984 so in some respects is a bit out of date, yet it is very interesting and might be something you'd enjoy.

It sounds like you and your wife balance each other out nicely!

MikeWilliams (not verified) says...

Thank you for this article! As a counselor who has pondered personality type and how it affects the many different aspects of our lives for the past 20 years, the link between type and spirituality is one that has just recently been at the forefront of my thinking. I was particularly considering the T/F function as it relates to how people make judgements, with Ts preferring compelling evidence and Fs more apt to relate to the strong emotional component that is common to most religions. The findings from the study you cite seem to bear that supposition out. Thanks for sharing!

Gayle Weinraub says...

You're most welcome, Mike! I'm glad it was helpful!

Guest (not verified) says...

I did not see INFP included in this article.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Please see my comment to the group.

Paulus (not verified) says...

Interesting that only twelve types show on here. As an INFP, I understand transcendence to be one of our key searches. and that spirituality is a big part of our makeup. A bit of a puzzler that this personality type not reflected on here. I was looking forward to see how we weighted in when I opened the article.

Great article though!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment Paulus! My type didn't make the list either. It is rather disappointing, isn't it? The reason only twelve types show up is that the researchers apparently planned to show only the top four types in each group.

Guest (not verified) says...

What about the four other personality types that were not mentioned, such as ISTJ? Where do they fall?

Gayle Weinraub says...

We don't know. Please see my comment to everyone.

Guest (not verified) says...

Don't see ESTJ but two ISTP. Where does ESTJ fall in this? Thanks.

Magenta (not verified) says...

Me either! What gives? The evaluation is not thorough.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Magenta, the goal of the study was to show the four top ranking types in each category. That's what they did. The goal of the study was not to rank all 16 types. At most, only 12 types could be ranked since there are only three categories.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Sorry, ESTJ did not make the top four in any group so it isn't listed.

Guest (not verified) says...

I do not see either INFP or ISFP in your list as to whether they believe in a Higher Power. I am an ISFP, sometimes I test as an INFP. I am a strong I, Moderate F, and a strong P. My S and N can switch. Both may change from slight to moderate; depending on the test. I feel more comfortable and more like the ISFP, Artist; however, as an Artistic type, I do rely on my Imagination and Intuition for everything. But, My Intuition rests in the "Here and Now" (It might be considered a "gut instinct.) Although, I admire the imaginative abilities of someone like a J.K. Rowling or Tolkien, who said that wonderful phrase, "All Who Wonder are Not Lost." I do not share that type of Imagination. My Imagination, I believe arises and is very much affected by that which comes from my Five Senses. Even my experience of the Liturgy and the Bible rests on that I which I see, hear, and remember. If I were to lose my five senses, or my memory, or my hands, I would be a "very sad sack!" Thank you.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thank you for your comment! You are correct that INFP and ISFP were not in the top four for any group and therefore are not listed. You sound like a Sensing type to me! I am interested in exploring different types of imagination and creativity among the types. Obviously L. Frank Baum, author of The Wizard of Oz, had a brilliant imagination, but was he necessarily an Intuitive? I read that his books were so detailed kids thought Oz was a real place! I really would love to know his type preferences. But I definitely believe a Sensing type can be an artist.

Lori Milner (not verified) says...

Great first article! Lots to think about. I'm looking forward to more on this topic. I'm surprised at the percentage of Introverts who made it into the "don't believe" or "not sure" categories.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks Lori! I'm curious as to why you are surprised at the number of Introverts. Notice that all the types in those two categories are Thinking types. I would guess that would have more bearing on belief in God than Introversion and Extraversion. Note the paragraph in my article about my friend with INTP preferences. I thought he explained it very well. I gather that Thinking types are natural skeptics.

Lori Milner (not verified) says...

Great first article! Lots to think about. I'm looking forward to more on this topic. I'm surprised at the percentage of Introverts who made it into the "don't believe" or "not sure" categories.

Guest (not verified) says...

Yes, in general it seems that people who are believers of reasoning (thinking) are less likely to believe in supernaturals. However, funny is the idea of believing something just because most people believe in it.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment!

Mary1245 (not verified) says...

Reading details of my INTJ preferences was such a relief to find out that I share many common characteristics with others in the relatively small female INTJ group. Every child wants to please their parents and in a family where going to church was mandatory it was almost a painful place to be. My father was such a devout and dedicated believer and I recall looking up at his earnest face during a church hymn and saying to myself "he really looks like he believes this stuff." Wanting to be a good child I tried very hard to believe. But like Santa Clause, which I was never able to believe in, I learned to keep my mouth shut. My mom got pretty angry with me when she caught me telling my sisters that mom and dad where actually Santa. All this left me pretty confused. Much of what they preached in church didn't make sense and for an info junkie kid watching some of the first televised horrors of the Vietnam war and being unable to make sense out of it, what they were preaching in church just seemed downright naive, willfully blind or just plain lies. I left home at 19 and the first thing I did was promise never to willingly enter a church again. I've been a few times over the last 45 years and it gives me the creeps or in the case where an old hymn is sung (like the one played at my grandmothers funeral more than 50 years ago) makes me want to cry. As an info junkie still trying to make sense of the world, I find religion even more perplexing than as a child. I cannot be convinced that overall the impact has been good and I remind myself that in most of the rest of the world I would be killed for having the thoughts I do as well as even doing something as simple as being a female and riding a bicycle. One thought that bubbled up a few decades ago was that maybe there aren't as many INTJ's out there (as there should be) because they are the first to get culled by the believers. After all, during a witch hunt or religious pogroms or the inquisition, if you could not effectively lie about what you really thought, you were dead. And it's still really frustrating to have "believer" friends think you are just being stubborn or willful by not being "open" to the idea of a deity. They don't get that you can be enthralled at the beauty and diversity of nature without having to believe there is some kind of deity behind it all. And I look at them and wonder what must it "feel" like to be able to be a believer.

Guest (not verified) says...

I am also an INTJ female and I got to tell you that you are not alone. I am a Buddhist but not a strict one. I look at it as philosophy. I do follow his advice but do not worship him as a God or a higher being. I just look at him as just another man that has good advices on life but that's about it. There are a lot of things that I don't agree with in my religion and I will bypass that. I also consider myself as agnostic because I am spiritual but I don't believe God. Why can't we just appreciate things like nature for what it is and not try to give credit to who created it or even have to ask who? Like I like this flower because it is beautiful and I am glad it exist but that's about it. I don't need any other explanation why it exist but I do look at it functionality which is more of a biology thing. I am glad there are more people put there that think similarly to me.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment.

Emerald INTJ (not verified) says...

To my skeptical INTJ sisters - do not despair! Check out atheist and skeptic meet-ups in your area. You are not alone. And you are right. There is absolutely no proof for any sort of magical man in the sky vs lots of evidence against. Feelings, experiences.....shrug, yawn. We know our brains are overly ambitious pattern-matching machines. Life can be more full of joy and awe once you're freed from the cognitive dissonance and mental contortions and guilt associated with religious dogma.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hi Emerald! I think there's a good chance that religious dogma and belief in God are not one and the same. As a Jew who came to faith in Christ, the types of proof I was looking for had to do with fulfilled prophecies, etc., the branch of study known as apologetics. There are many great books out there by people who set out to disprove the Bible, such as Lee Strobel, and, as commented by the guest I just responded to, had no choice but to admit the truth of its claims. The ultimate proof though is giving it a chance and seeing whether it makes a difference in your life. And I'm talking about the Bible itself, not what some church teaches about it, because all of us can point to a church or person who claims to be living what Christ taught and yet we don't see the fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, etc.) in their lives. If you scroll down a bit to my reply to Mary, I recommended an outstanding book about faith to her. One point Dr. Anderson makes is that the first step in developing faith is to decide whether we WANT to believe or not, and then go from there. He also makes the point that often people really don't want to believe, because belief demands a response and sometimes a change of habits or other things they don't want to give up. Hope this gives you something to chew on! Thanks for your comment!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Emerald, I forgot to mention earlier that I spent two very interesting evenings this week listening to a man from Baghdad who was a Muslim, then an atheist, and finally a Christian who is now ministering to his own people in Detroit. He told us that first he fell in love with the Bible for its beauty - the art, literature, architecture which it has inspired and which our speaker had admired since high school. Then he began to appreciate it for its goodness. Though I don't recall his exact point I think he was referring to humanitarian works done in God's name. He said that he finally loved and believed the Bible because it is true, a conviction he came to through studying the types of things I mentioned above like fulfilled prophecies and other evidences that far surpass what we see in any secular book, yet no one questions whether Shakespeare, or whoever, wrote it. It was quite a fascinating presentation!

Guest (not verified) says...

I am also an INTJ female. I do not believe in spirituality or religion. It all seems so silly, unfathomable and unprovable. However, I do believe in the one true God, the God the science and the Bible. That's right, the God who wrote the Bible is the same God who created science. The world is orderly and He gave us the ability to see and understand this order. It is logical, reasonable and provable. Most people grew up in the public school system, where they were told to believe in evolution. They mainly accept it and get on with life. For those few who set out to prove God is dead, they stumble upon their evidences until they have no choice but to admit God is real and alive. As an INTJ, this is the only kind of God I can believe in.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hello, Guest (Not Verified)! After reading your second and third sentences I assumed you are a non - believer, only to be pleasantly surprised to discover that I agree 100% with the rest of your comment! Perhaps it would be helpful to define spirituality and religion. I thought I had done so in my article, but maybe not? My dictionary defines spirituality as pertaining to the spirit or soul, as distinguished from the physical nature. Religion is defined as a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, esp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency....I think there may be a good chance we are actually talking about the same thing. 8-) Thanks for your comment!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Mary, thank you for your very sensitive and thoughtful comment. I recently read a wonderful, thought - provoking book I'd like to recommend to you. If I Really Believe, Why Do I Have These Doubts? by Dr. Lynn Anderson, which can be found on Amazon. Please don't be put off by the title. It is appropriate for non - believers as well. Your story sounds a lot like the ones in this book, and the last line of your comment makes me think you would find it helpful. I'm surprised that I completed a degree in religion without encountering some of the concepts in this book like the stages of faith and what it is and isn't. Best wishes to you!

Mary1245 (not verified) says...

Thank you, I will have a look at this. Mary

Guest (not verified) says...

I'm a female intj, but I'm very different from the other intjs because I don't fit in the stereotypes. I'm sure of it though, because after years of "self-studying" I've come to the conclusion that's just how my brain works. I said this because you probably won't believe I am one: I am highly catholic. Yes, I go to churches, pray, and believe and love God as much as I can love Him. The only reason why you are what you are now (I mean you promised not to go to churches, you don't believe etc etc) is that you've never really bothered to go further yourself. You've never bothered to search for Him, for God himself. Instead you simply tried to convince yourself it was true in order to please your parents, to fit in. Obviously failing. That is not how it goes. So many people have done this mistake. God is the one you have to search, because people can misguide you. The church makes mistakes, doesn't it? Well, maybe I am not really qualified to tell you this, because I actually experienced God, but I wanted to write anyway because I'm stubborn ahahah. Obviously you are not forced to believe me, I just wanted to express my point of view. Hope I wrote it in a clear way, you see, English is not my mothertongue.

Charles Rae Clark (not verified) says...

You are not the only one out there with those thoughts, I assure you. Growing up and having to learn that you could be ostracized for your very own unique beliefs (I use the word unique because the bible belt does not hold many atheists) was definitely tough. More to the point of not having many if anyone to bounce my ideas off that wouldn't look at me like I was a freak. But in that way, I've come up with a coping mechanism that might be beneficial to others with very similar problems. Believers have a better time being more comfortable with other like-minded individuals (as do most people in general - that's why mirroring people works so well). So I mention that while I'm an atheist, I am not trying to push my own convictions onto others; so long as they respect my reasoning and give me the same treatment I gave them, we will be golden. But the other little nugget of priceless info I've found to use is, "While I am atheist and I do not necessarily believe in a higher power, I do believe in energy. After all, energy powers so many things in our life: our lights, coffee makers, etc. It also flows through our bodies to give us animation and it's found in planets, animals and plants. Life is energy." And that is enough for most religious people to be satisfied that I am not some devil-reincarnate or something. Maybe that will help others, not just INTJs, to better relate or converse with friends, families and acquaintances. It's not an avoidance tactic, but more of a tried-and-true method of opening another person to the idea that religion isn't everything they think it is. Someone without it can still be morally sound.

Gwendelyn (not verified) says...

Hello Gayle. While I found your concept very interesting, I must beg to differ. I've always tested INFJ and have never been religious; nor do I feel comfortable in a church of any kind. I was the kid who would raise her hand in catechism to ask things like, "if god (sic) loves us so much, why did he flood the Earth and only save Noah and his family and only a few of the animals"? My pastor actually encouraged questions and his answer to that one was, "I don't know."

While I do feel somewhat spiritual in that I feel a connection to all living things, I've always felt defensive when people told me there was a higher being controlling all things all the time. We make our own decisions. Plus I've always thought if there were such a higher being who supposedly loved us so very much, why would he need to be worshipped? Wouldn't this being be overflowing with love and not need worshipping? Either he created all this for his own amusement or he needs to be reinforced continuously that he is a deity. Doesn't make sense to me at all. That would make him a narcissist!

INFJs feel deeply and are very compassionate and helpful people, often artists. But it doesn't follow for all of us that we'd follow ancient ideas about needing to feel included and needing to feel that there is a place for us after we die. INFJs are also about new ideas, Aquarius ideals rather than Pieces ideals.

Thank you. Hope this provides a different perspective.
Gwendelyn

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment Gwendelyn!I share your preferences for INFJ!

I actually agree with you. I gave some examples in my article of different scenarios people face but didn't mean to imply they are all necessarily my feelings or experiences. I totally agree that we make our own decisions and are not controlled by a higher being. I'm not sure I've ever heard in 30+ years of church attendance that God needs to be worshiped. I worship Him because *I* need it, to worship and be grateful, not because I think He does. I don't see the Bible nor any church I've been a part of teaching such things.

J. (not verified) says...

“Sir,” the woman said, “you must be a prophet. So tell me, why is it that You Jews insist that Jerusalem is the only place of worship, while we Samaritans claim it is here at Mount Gerizim, where our ancestors worshiped?”

Jesus replied, “Believe Me, dear woman, the time is coming when it will no longer matter whether you worship the Father on this mountain or in Jerusalem. You Samaritans know very little about the one you worship, while we Jews know all about Him, for salvation comes through the Jews.

But the time is coming — indeed it’s here now — when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship Him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.”

The woman said, “I know the Messiah is coming—the one who is called Christ. When He comes, he will explain everything to us.”

Then Jesus told her, “I Am the Messiah!”

- John 4:19-26 NLT

Gayle Weinraub says...

I agree that God wants to be worshiped, if that's your point here. I just don't believe He needs to be worshiped. (I wish italicization were available for comments. I'd italicize the word need.) There is a difference! Thanks for your comment.

J. (not verified) says...

I don't have a point, but God does. I'm just posting what the Holy Spirit told me to post. Have a blessed day!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Awesome! Thanks, you too! 8-)

Jill Jackson (not verified) says...

Why no INFP?

Gayle Weinraub says...

Please see my reply to the group.

Guest (not verified) says...

you forgot infps

Gayle Weinraub says...

No type was forgotten. Please see my reply to the group.

Patti Lacey (not verified) says...

Thank you for the great research! I think it is very important for different personality types to belong in organizations based on their personality as well as gifts. I think ENFP's, especially women, easily get their feelings hurt by men that do not accept them for their gifts. As women we are supposed to be quiet which is hard for an ENFP woman. It is especially important to be surrounded by the people with the same gifts. Example: the apostles were prophets and he sent them out in groups.

Someone once mentioned what personality type is Jesus? He most definitely had to be an intuitive and more than likely an extrovert. (Although he had to have introvert time for prayer.). But what about the last letter: Is Jesus a judger or perceiver? If he is a forgiver wouldn't he most likely be a perceiver instead of a judger? Rosh Hoshanah is the Jewish New Year. It is a time when forgiveness is given for debts. If Jesus is Jewish, yet does not want to be called Rabbi, yet went to a synogogue to heal, what day are we to worship? I have many questions and have written a small workbook that I don't want to get into the wrong hands for it to be published. I don't know why, but is really hard for me to trust Catholics. Maybe it is because they didn't accept me as a child as a nondenominational Christian or maybe it is because they have treated me harshly or taken my money when I don't go to their church. That is why I have attended Messianic services and have learned so much more in less than a year than I woud in my lifetime of being a Christian. (Although this group is widely suffering persecution.) The bible does say we are to have the inner and outer courts for the Jewish and the Gentile. I would like to be involved with a group that has open conversation that is not condemning since I am more surrounded by people rejected from churches and live in very elderly community but consider myself young at heart. I want to be of help as ENFP's want to be and again thank you for this email!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks so much for this comment, Patti. I totally agree with everything you say about gifts. That's just as true for INFJs!

I believe Jesus was an Introvert. Remember, an Introvert can fool you but an Extravert never will. In other words you are far more likely to see an Introvert displaying what you consider to be Extraverted behavior than vice versa. I think you may have misunderstood the last letter of the type code. It indicates whether the perceiving or judging preference is extraverted and has nothing to do with judging others.

I am a Jew who became a Christian during college! I have done some study in this area and believe that Jesus taught us to worship on the first day, Sunday, and in churches rather than synagogues. I am sorry that you've had bad experiences with Catholics. That's definitely too bad that you know so many people who've been rejected by churches. It shouldn't be that way! We have a Messianic community where I live and I've pondered a lot about people who decide to follow Jesus but want to continue attending a synagogue rather than finding a church. It would be interesting to visit such a group, though. I'm glad you are learning from them. Blessings to you!

Shinnunna (not verified) says...

I believe that God is very much real and is behind many things that we understand and others that we don't. A belief is however personal and others do not want to be asked but God wants us to share our faith.
Unless someone can produce hard evidence that the whole history of the Israelites is fake and that at no time did a person by the name of Jesus the Christ exist.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment. I agree!

KWJ (not verified) says...

Do you have any statistics for INFP personality types? I realize that INFP's comprise only about 4% of the population. Or what statics you might have for INFJ personality types, who comprise about 1% of the population. It would be interesting to see how some rare types fit in your ranking.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Yes, it would be interesting but I don't have that information as the study, which comes from the MBTI(R) Manual, only ranked the top four types in each category.

Sharon Braun (not verified) says...

Where are the INFP. I suspect they are 100 per cent believers

Gayle Weinraub says...

Well, we WISH they would be 100% believers, but I doubt it! I don't think any type would be 100% anything because so many other things play a role in our beliefs, etc. Since they weren't in the top four for any category we don't know where they stand.

Guest (not verified) says...

INFJ? Where are they on this scale?

Gayle Weinraub says...

I wish I knew as that is my type.

Guest (not verified) says...

You said there were 3 in two groups, but I did not see mine.
So to which class is ISTJ assigned?

Jim

Gayle Weinraub says...

None, since it was not one of the top ranking types in any of the categories.

Martha Hancock (not verified) says...

Okay- I understand what you are saying, but correct me if I'm wrong. On the first list- those are the percentages of those who do NOT BELIEVE? Just the first one listed or all of them in first list. I was 27, and had searched and searched everywhere but where I should have looked. Grew up in a moral, but not Christian home. Church was hard- disagreed and questioned, but had no one to answer my questions or point me in the right direction. Ended up having what beliefs I had destroyed by college, and it took a long time to get past all of that. I guess that's why now, as a believer, I am always looking for the stumbling blocks- the questions that hold people back.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Yes, Martha, you are correct. The first list shows the top four types who definitely did not believe.

As for the questions that hold people back, an excellent book that deals with those is If I Really Believe, Why Do I Have These Doubts? By Dr. Lynn Anderson, which is available on Amazon. It's very readable and provides much to chew on. Thanks for your comment!

Martha Hancock (not verified) says...

Then if only 11% of INTP's do not believe- that leaves 89% who do. I'm not saying that the road I took to becoming a believer was easy, but here I am. I enjoy teaching Sunday school (senior saints) and have taught children in the past. The mind definitely has to be engaged and that's okay in Scripture. Job asked all the questions- that's where I started (not the easiest place believe me). There are many authors who set out to prove that Jesus wasn't who He said he was - Lew Wallace who wrote Ben Hur, for example. Josh McDowell who was abused as a child and grew up to write Evidence that Demands a Verdict, and Don't Check Your Brains at the Door. The Bible is okay with asking questions because God sees the heart, and when you are being drawn to believe, He uses lots of things to bring people to belief. Another good resource is Knowing God by J. I. Packer. The Bible promises that if we seek Him with all our heart, He will be found. Don't give up.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Great comment! Yes, the majority of all 16 types does believe in a higher power. In the article I mentioned an INTP friend. He actually talked to me for a whole hour and you may eventually see more articles stemming from that conversation, which was most helpful! He talked about the INTP need to feel it is ok to ask questions in church and that people won't be offended. I agree with that even though my preferences are INFJ. I've read all but one of the books you mentioned and just saw the new version of the movie Ben Hur. To me, the mind is the place to start a journey of faith, but it might not be so for everyone.

Guest (not verified) says...

INFP?

Gayle Weinraub says...

Please see my reply to the group.

J. (not verified) says...

Wow! I saw this in my inbox as I was wondering (read: crying about) why God chose someone who is practically my opposite as a partner. I'm Christian. My personality type is INFP. I love to pray, read and discuss what God is saying and doing, and attend worship service. I've felt close to God since I was a child but wasn't raised in church. I see and hear Him everywhere, in every situation.

The person who God chose for me to marry is allegedly Christian (we met in church, he's been baptized, etc.), but said that he "doesn't understand prayer"! When he said that, I was kinda disgusted and turned off, honestly. How are you Christian but "don't understand" communicating with God?! In church, he mostly enjoyed fixing stuff, helping people, and socializing (especially activity events). He no longer attends church and is currently on excursions away from God. Our conversations have always been awkward and disconnected. God says that he's ISTP. What a nightmare combination for me. I keep hoping that I am hearing God wrong about this match up... Anyway, thanks for the confirmation article that we are not on the same spiritual wavelength.

Gayle Weinraub says...

I'm glad this came to you at the right time, apparently. I certainly hope things improve for your marriage! Take heart because people can be and have been happily married to their complete type opposites. Isabel Myers, co - author of the Myers -Briggs Type Indicator(R), had preferences for INFP while her husband's were ISTJ, so the only preference they had in common was Introversion. I also know couples who have successful relationships despite being opposites on all four letters. However, it does take lots of love, patience and tolerance, plus Intuitives and Sensing types being willing to speak the other partner's language. It sounds like the real problem is his lack of church attendance and lack of striving to grow spiritually and as a husband. I think that's what you are saying in your last sentence.

It's possible that saying he doesn't understand prayer is an expression of humility. I would be suspicious of anyone who claimed to totally understand prayer. Of course, it could just mean he's frustrated and/or not trying to learn more and grow in that area of his spiritual life. Best wishes to you!

J. (not verified) says...

Thank you for your encluraging and clarifying response, Gayle. Yes, you are understanding my frustration with his lack of striving to grow spiritually or nourish his relationship with God. The MIA attendance at church is just a symptom of his current spiritual condition.

It may be humble of him to claim that he "doesn't understand prayer". But he does understand prayer. What disgusted me is that he thinks it's something to be "understood". His claim not to "understand" it is why he has stopped DOING it. What he doesn't understand is why God isn't answering his prayers with a "Yes" like He used to do. And he doesn't understand why he has to wait to get what he wants. He also doesn't understand that disobedience hinders prayers. He used to do what God says. Now he says that he feels "ignored" by God. Like he ignores what God tells him to do.

In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.
- 1 Peter 3:7 NLT

Gayle Weinraub says...

I'm glad it was helpful, and I understand where you're coming from in describing his attitude toward prayer. I think you show great wisdom and insight into prayer as you describe his attitude in your second paragraph. Hopefully something will wake him up, soon. Thanks for sharing!

Guest (not verified) says...

So, what about INFPs??

Gayle Weinraub says...

Several have asked this. Again, please see the explanation I wrote for the whole group.

RKVLC (not verified) says...

I am INTJ and I feel compelled to do the work of God. I never feel better than when I am alone and can feel the strength of the Spirit. If only I could become less everyday and He could become more. I'll share some of my favorite lyrics right now: "I'm not living. I'm just killing time." Every day I fail. But He is still so good to me.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for the wonderful comment. I hope that continues for you!

Sharon Shoemaker (not verified) says...

I am an INFJ. Belief has always been easy for me. As matter of fact, INFJ's make great spiritual leaders. God is my rock and my wonderful heavenly Father.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks Sharon. I agree! My preferences are INFJ as well.

Brandy (not verified) says...

What about INFP's, What was their majority take?

Gayle Weinraub says...

Brandy, I'm not sure what you mean by majority take, but they are not included because they were not one of the top types in any category. Please scroll down to see my explanation of this to the group.

Kati (not verified) says...

I think I'm one of the few INFJ's who are really scientifically. Any kind of higher power seems like total nonsense to me and describing the world in a science way makes all the things add up in my brain. I literally can't comprehend how and why people believe in greater powers. I'm way too independent to think someone is guiding me or someone is helping me. Like no, that's me.
However, I definitely do not judge religious or spiritually people as long as they don't try to convince me. Or kill in the name of their God's that it.

But interesting thought that maybe spiritually has some pattern when it comes to the types.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment, Kati!

ENTP7 (not verified) says...

ENTP here, a skeptic and non-believer. I jumped in and out several times during my life, including childhood. I grew up in a mixed family who mostly practiced Christianity. As a kid I questioned about who created god and hated to pray. As a teenager, I fell into a different belief system. Now I quit all of it and feeling free inside, I wish I never come back to it. I now practice clarity of the mind, awareness, no-nonsense attitude and common sense. Apparently this doesn't interfere with my imaginative capabilities, which at first worried me.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hello everyone, and thanks for all your comments! It will take me a while to read them all but in the meantime I've noticed that several of you are asking about your type if it was not included in the study I cited about belief in God. First, my apologies as the credit I gave to the study got omitted from the article. It is from the MBTI(R) Manual on p. 238. The table only shows the top four types for each category, "No", "Not Sure", or "Yes" regarding belief in a higher spiritual power. If your type is not listed in this article, it simply means it was not in the top four for any of the categories. No further information about where the other types rank is provided in the manual.

Rong Shou (not verified) says...

I'm an INTJ and I am a disciple-daughter of my Lord Jesus Christ ^_^

Gayle Weinraub says...

That's awesome Rong Shou! Thanks for sharing!

RachelE (not verified) says...

I found this pretty interesting. I am solidly INTJ but I am also a firm Christian. I approach faith differently than most of my Christian friends, though. For me it's about finding answers. I am willing to believe in these things without "proof" because, to me, the proof is that the principles are practical in my life. Everything I learn in Church really does work for me; every commandment really does make my life better, and the way Christianity manages to reconcile the concepts of justice and mercy also makes sense to me. I find it odd that so many of my type don't feel the same way. Maybe they haven't given it a chance?

Gayle Weinraub says...

I agree 100% Rachele!But if have been following the comments here, you are hopefully feeling encouraged that you are definitely not the only Christian INTJ!

Guest (not verified) says...

A fascinating premise. The content would have been a lot more accessible without the use of acronyms that not all readers are familiar with. I've taken the Myers–Briggs test so I know what is being referred to, but, even so, I don't remember my type or what all the initials mean. I would have liked to have seen the various types spelled out and each type sorted out under what sorts of beliefs they might have.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment! Listing the beliefs (I assume you mean spiritual) of every type might have taken several pages and been beyond the scope of this article. I am new to Truity both as a reader and writer and the understanding I got from the editor was that the readership of this site is pretty type - savvy. She apparently did not see a need to spell the terms out. In addition I thought that there are other parts of the site that go over the nuts and bolts. If that is incorrect, there are many great sites and books out there that can help you brush up. The study cited in my article came from the MBTI(R) Manual so it was aimed at professionals. In my opinion the best book you can read about personality type, what the letters mean, etc., is Gifts Differing by Isabel Briggs Myers.

Gayle Weinraub says...

In my next article I plan to provide some thumbnail definitions of what the preferences mean, mostly to root out stereotyping and/or misunderstanding, but for those who may be rusty it will provide a brief brush - up as well. Our editor will also be helping me link to other parts of the site for those who want to do further reading on the basics. I hope this will be helpful to you and that you will continue to join us. Thanks for hanging in there with us thus far!

JONATHAN SZISH (not verified) says...

Gayle - thank you for taking the time to write this (and so beautifully,too)! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it as an INFP, a Christian, and a student of personality. I agree that personality can predispose certain types to faith in the unseen. The beauty of Myers-Briggs is that it implies that we are all be free to be who we were created to be. As an adolescent who grew up in a secular family, I resisted faith and organized religion; but at the right time, when I was ready as an adult, I grabbed on to the Gospel message of Jesus. Actually, it grabbed onto me and totally invaded my worldview (and I am so glad it did). Now that I am aware that I am an INFP, faith makes great sense to me and I have continued to grow in my love of God, which has had a measurable, positive effect on my family and hopefully will on my family tree for years to come. My search ended at Jesus. Paradoxically, it also awakened a burning passion to better understand the created universe and the patterns of problems that continue to plague humanity. Thanks again, Gayle!

J. (not verified) says...

Hi Jonathan. We have the same faith journey. I enjoyed reading your comment.

Jonathan went to find David and encouraged him to stay strong in his faith in God. - 1 Samuel 23:16 NLT

Gayle Weinraub says...

You're welcome, Jonathan! Thank you for the very wonderful comment!

Gayle Weinraub says...

I wanted everyone who commented on this post to know that our fearless editor has corrected an error which I fear caused a lot of confusion: omission of the footnote giving credit to the study I cited. If you will scroll up to the bullet points listing the types in each category, and go to the sentence after ISFJ, you'll see the number 1 at the end of the sentence and the corresponding footnote at the end of the article. Again, our apologies for any confusion or misunderstanding this may have caused.

Guest (not verified) says...

I am an INTP, It took me most of my life to get my head around what appeared to me at the time abstract, not real... sort of like the tooth fairy. I struggled to be in a church it would feel uncomfortable and at the time I do believe a lot of people with good intentions tried to put as they say... the fear of hell into me....

it was more confusing for me to believe in evolution after looking at the detail, creativeness and genius of how every flower, animal, newborn baby was something often able to solidify the fact that they were not the result of a Big Bang and matter of chance. It was all planned and only the greater of all things had the ability to not only have the ability to place such detail and meaning into everything ..... He was also able to understand us, heal us and guide us..

I had spent most of my life in therapy, I think this was due to never feeling quite normal as an INTP female.... nothing helped, no drugs no labels and no talking it out... I was diagnosed with Aspergers and ADHD and Dissociation and anorexia when I was younger.... I got addicted to the meds prescribed and it took a place of hitting rock bottom as it does for most before you realize you need a savior, because no matter what my IQ, my years of research, my feeling of invincibility, I could not fix myself...

The day I asked God to help me, the day I felt regret, helpless and on a path that would have soon lead to death, I have never looked back nor will I ever be thankful and grateful enough for how God healed me in less then two years ... therapists and psychiatrists couldn't do it in 20.... I grew close to Jesus and God revealed himself in ways I never thought were possible....

Psychologists believe in body soul and psyche
God made us as body soul and spirit,

I found my peace in Gods word, my instruction manual for life and a personal relationship not just theology.....I never found answers, not mans wisdom or my arrogance to actually believe I could help myself....

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thank you for this wonderful comment! I hope it will move others as much as it did me. May God continue to bless your walk with Him!

lisa.hickey says...

God is real whether you believe in Him or not. You have free will to choose to not Believe, and that is fine. However, when Jesus does return, everyone will know that He is God and those who chose not to Believe will spend eternity separated from His love. Those who chose to follow Him will spend eternity in Paradise with Him. It's not a coincidence that all of these crazy things are happening right now. If you will just read Revelations, and just do some research to help you understand what it means, all of these things were written in the Bible thousands of years ago. It is amazing actually! Alot of scientific ideas can be explained by the Bible as well. I pray that this will help to open the eyes of at least one person :)

Gayle Weinraub says...

Amen, Lisa! Thank you for your comment!

Heath (not verified) says...

I'm an INTJ man. I am a devout Christian. I am also a very logical engineer, and a strong believer in science. I wasn't raised in a Christian home. As a child, I only went to church because my friends did. My faith started to grow as I became an adult and started seeing the patterns found in everything around us. I became a devout Christian in my 30s when I realized that God created us to be curious and want to explore and learn about our surroundings. After all he desires a relationship with us. So it's logical that he would create us to seek him out. I strongly believe that our science and research is our process of exploring and learning about our surroundings. Which will ultimately lead to us coming to the conclusion that only a sovereign God could of created the order and patterns we see everywhere. After all, everything from the microbiological level to the vastness of space shows order and patterns. Non of which could of possibly of been created randomly. Only a God with intelligence far beyond our understanding could of created our existence. I find it interesting that many physicist are atheist. Especially since their goal in life is to find order in what they perceive as chaos.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks for your comment, Heath! I agree!

Deborah7 (not verified) says...

I am a Christian, a scientist and an INFP. I'm sure that sounds like an odd combination to some. Your article intrigued me. Our bodies are indeed hard-wired but unlike other electrical circuits, ours have great plasticity. The wiring changes with experience as we develop and continue to age. I struggled for many years with doubt about the accuracy of my faith lest I be branded as a fool (which I have been many times). But my belief and my love for God has enriched my life so much that I can't imagine living without it. Science is my passion though and I also love to find the truth in being of this earthly world. I see myself as having the best of both worlds. If that makes me a fool....so be it. It's funny how "so be it" is the translation for AMEN!

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thanks, Deborah!

chyatt6385 (not verified) says...

I am a INTJ man and a strong believer in Christ. My initial beliefs began when I realized that the world and everything in it either followed some sort of order and had a purpose, or was completely chaotic and subject to chance. Just as the saying goes, "Nature abhors a vacuum," I abhor the concept of chaos in the world and chose to believe that everyone has a purpose in life; without purpose, everything is meaningless and hopeless. If everyone has a purpose, there must be a Purpose-giver, and the logic chain followed from there. It's not surprising, though, that the number of INTJs who don't believe is very high. Most people have a hard time accepting the proof that God gives regarding His existence, even though ironically that proof would be perfectly acceptable in a court of law under our standards of evidence in the US.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Thank you. I agree!

MelissaR (not verified) says...

Hi,

I wondered about INFJ not being in the top 4 possibly due to their lower % in the population anyway, so could statistically be disadvantaged from appearing in the top 4 on a dichotomous type of question, in part, for this reason; if there were uneven groups of respondents? Or did some kind of mathematical statistical methods used in the research reduce this as a potential factor?

Also as an INFJ I find the common denominators across religious more obvious to me and relevant than attention to the specific belief systems within them. The inherent values that are in common, or principles embedded in religion and the recognition of the existence of spirituality rather than the non-existence of spirituality would be more relevant a question for me to answer. Perhaps this is also to do with the attention to patterns and recognition of common themes that are preferred in this type, along with a greater valuing of equality that sees value in all things, or attention to values that are important in all things that makes it harder for them to be definitive about affirming specific beliefs that separate one religion from another in this topic area? So they appear more agnostic or on the fence for those reasons?  Maybe a different research question that is broader and not specific to beliefs could show different results?

AKMixx (not verified) says...

"I wondered about INFJ not being in the top 4 possibly due to their lower % in the population anyway, so could statistically be disadvantaged from appearing in the top 4 on a dichotomous type of question, in part, for this reason; if there were uneven groups of respondents?"

I doubt that, INTJs are just as rare and they topped those who don't believe in a higher being.

Or did some kind of mathematical statistical methods used in the research reduce this as a potential factor?"

Probably, it's not in the article nor the source.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hello AK,

Thank you for responding to Melissa. I also dealt with this question in my reply.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Hi Melissa, 

Thank you for your comment. I see that you have also received a reply from another reader. I'm not sure how you are seeing INFJ's absence from the list as making them appear agnostic or on the fence. Please keep in mind that the majority of every type said that they do believe in a higher power. Of those who said they did not believe or weren't sure, the top four types in each category (did not believe, weren't sure) were then listed. Bottom line, if a type does not appear on the list, it is because in this study fewer people with those type preferences said they did not believe, or weren't sure, than those with the type codes on the list. INFJ may not be on the list simply because more INFJ participants in this study were believers. Also the question was not dichotomous, if I understand it correctly, as there were three possible answers. The respondents could indicate that they did believe in a higher power, or did not believe, or weren't sure. Unfortunately I am not able to look at the article as I type my reply, but if I recall that is the way the question was structured. I hope this helps.

Gayle Weinraub says...

Oops! I just took another look at the article and realized there is a third list for the top four types who definitely believe in a higher power. So I understand your questions better now. I still think it's a matter of the INFJ respondents simply having a smaller percentage of believers than the types which made the list. Remember, they are talking percentages, not numbers, so I think your question (again I am not able to look at it as I type) about whether the research controlled for the smaller numbers of INFJs in the population could be answered yes.

AKMixx (not verified) says...

All these comments from INFPs asking why they aren't on the list... T_T

Had they not read and comprehend the article? 

Gayle Weinraub says...

I guess not! Thank you for your comments.

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