Thursday, December 18, 2014

Difficulty With Typing: INTPs

Okay so I made a main post about why its difficult to type anybody, and that covers a lot of the main points, but now I want to get specific to INTPs, since I am one, and I confidently mistyped myself for so long.

Somehow, we manage to really elude people's understanding, especially us female ones, so I'll also address some gender differences. Feel free to just scroll to the parts that interest you.

INTPs and the J/P Scale ::: ENTPs who think they are INTPs/INTPs expected to be ENTPs or ISFJs
I'm pretty sure a lot of INTPs get mistyped as other things in both real life and fiction, but we're out there more than people realize. Our stereotype seems to be a combination of the ISFJ and the ENTP, because people overlook a simple fact: we are dominant judgers. We're actually pretty serious, and structured, even if this structure isn't applied to the outside world. In fact, it is that simple fact that makes live so damned hard for IxxPs in general. Our sense of structure is internal, and so we need to order most aspects of our internal lives to suit our own personal methods. Having our introverted judging function as our dominant function means that this is the very most important thing to us, but of course the external world does not bend to our will, and often won't leave us alone in general. This can make us kind of cynical, actually, and no matter how friendly we seem on the surface, it is easy to upset this balance.

An easy way to tell INTP vs ENTP is that most INTPs have absolutely no doubt they are introverts. ENTPs are the ones who are closer to the I/E line.

Female INTPs ::: INTPs expected to be INFPs or ISFJs
WE EXIST. Maybe not in fiction, but we're here in real life! I promise! People type Luna Lovegood as an INTP, I guess, but I'm not too sure about that. Anyway. Because we're so rare and unassuming, though, people get mad when they realize we aren't ISFJs or INFPs. Although female INFPs don't seem to be any better liked than we are (<3 kindred spirits), they are indeed more expected than female INTPs. They also show up in movies and TV shows a lot more. But that is beside the point.

Basically, people think we should be feelers. When we get dramatic or frustrated, then we become INFPs in everyone's eyes. When we are good, people notice the functions and expect us to behave like SFJs. Little Snow Whites and such. But we aren't. So when we act out against that Fe because we're tired and want to be left alone, it is decided that we are bitches. When guys behave the same way, it is just "boys being boys". I'm not a modern feminist or anything, but I definitely get frustrated at certain expectations placed on gender roles. We can't even be "one of the guys" because we lack the Se - we're in our heads. So as much as I love INFPs and ISFJs, I am not one of them and would like to be respected for my thinks, and not have so much feeliness expected of me. </rant>

INTP Emotions ::: INTP vs INFP
INTPs can get emotional too. It is just our weakness. We definitely experience them on a daily basis, and they do in fact affect us, though being inferior AND Fe, we don't really connect to them very well. As a writer, its easier for me to explain sensory detail, thought processes, and sterile action than to explain how anyone feels deep down. At least not without feeling corny about it. An INFP would be less likely to explain logical planning and plotting, and far better at the internal feels. It can be hard to tell either type apart, on occasion though, because the Fe and Te of each type ought to have similar placings.
A few ways to tell us apart:
-INFPs speak their mind more than INTPs
-INTPs use their internal sense of logic and order to create their moral perspective. INFPs use their internal sense of what is right and wrong to help them develop a sense of order. I think. I'm not an INFP so its a little hard for me to get Fi.
-INFPs wear their "drama" on their sleeve. INTPs internalize it/don't realize it, until they have a massive outburst of frustration, as could be seen in the new Star Trek series with Spock (new Spock is an INTP - old Spock was an INTJ).
-INTPs expect society to be socially accepting of their own personal brand of logic, while INFPs expect society to be ordered to accept their own personal brand of values.
Both types can be very creative, and get excited about ideas. Neither likes getting out much on average and typically does so out of obligation. The outside world severely interferes with our internal structure.

Te on the INTP ::: INTPs Mistyped as INTJs
INTPs are actually very prone to use their Te, especially males. I find it so depressing that one of our token fanable INTPs, Dr. Gregory House, is so often mistyped as an INTJ.  He is an INTP, through and through. There's no way that man uses tertiary Fi. He's just one example however. INTPs can actually be extremely J-ish, if given the chance, and if encouraged, we will learn to speak our minds (Te). When we are able to structure things to our liking, as Ti enjoys doing, we can become rather organized in many ways, and very confident, even if unfriendly. INTPs prefer this side of themselves, actually. When we use it in conjunction with our Ti, it means we are able to stand up for ourselves better, and not get quite as pushed around by social expectations as we would otherwise, and therefore are able to accomplish more and from there, be better respected.

I think a lot of guys mistype themselves as INTJs because they are able to be structured and organized more than the average, socially frustrated INTP.

The easiest way to tell an INTJ and an INTP apart is to determine whether the preference is for Si or Fi. One should be easily identified, while the other more or less shunned.

Intuition on the ISTP ::: ISTPs Mistyped as INTPs
ISTPs are commonly mistaken for INTPs. This seems to be pretty prevalent in fiction, where everyone is grasping around to find their token INTP computer geek in the story, but honestly: INTPs seem to get bored of computers, actually. I've met more S-type programmers than Ns. Once an INTP has solved how the programming works, we're done and ready to move on, unless we need it for some more abstract project or puzzle. And then it is a tool, not an interest. INTPs are also very big-picture oriented. We get our ideas, and then the details are just a means to create the larger idea we already have. ISTPs are more likely to just start doing it.
ISTPs can also mistype themselves as INTPs due to their overuse of Ni, but Ni is a more directed and focused function than Ne, and of course for them it really is overshadowed by Se, even if the user forgets to indulge in their Se. For example, an ISTP scientist will value kinesthetic work, in which they get to touch and especially DO something in the field, or something tangible. INTPs prefer to work with the intangible, and theoretical ideas. Touching things is nice, but we'd rather be wherever is most comfortable and least distracting so we can go mad-scientist on whatever it is we are trying to accomplish. INTPs also look a lot more random than ISTPs, to everyone who isn't an NP (it'd be harder for a fellow NP to recognize the randomness ;P)

Male INFJs thinking they are INTPs ::: Female INTPs thinking they are INFJs
This is the trap I fell into. Partly due to HSP, but I'll address the main part of this mistype now. INFJs and INTPs have a lot in common. Functionally, we are the only introverted Ns that use Fe/Ti. We are often considered good relationship matches.

Lets start with the boys. INFJs are already prone to delve deep into their tertiary function, Ti. It seems, in fact that Ti and Ni have an affinity for each other, causing one to seek out the other if possible. This can create a rather scientific feel on an INFJ, despite them being auxiliary Fe users. Because females tend to use more feels and males tend to use more thinks, it is easy for a male INFJ to think he might be an INTP. He feels he is analytical enough, and although he might come off as serious toward others, inwardly, he feels as though he relates to the INTPs supposed sense of humor that is often described. Being a dominant Ni user, he relates well to Ne, also.

Now for the girls. INTPs tend to take life more seriously than people generally expect, especially females who do not feel recognized for their prowess of the brain and might feel as though they have something to prove. In this way, we relate to the serious undertones of the INFJ description, and might even resonate with their relationship to Fe. Mistaking Ti for Ni, we might pursue this route, wondering why everyone thinks we are rude, when we feel as though we ought to be coming off as wise. We don't entirely relate to the other INFJs and their fluffy-cuddly-feely posts, but maybe we're just in better touch with our tertiary Ti. But that is not the case, O Female INTP. You'd have to be quite the evil INFJ to think of something that rude to say.

An easy way to tell between an INFJ and an INTP is whether the user recognizes Si.
Another note: Ne users connect faster to others over shared ideas; Se users connect faster to others by shared activities. Over time, Ne users tap into their Si and wish to have shared activities while Se users over time would tap into their Ni and care more about shared ideas, though the Ne still prioritizes ideas over activity and Se the other way around. Js will make this switch faster and more strongly than Ps.

Heartless INTPs ::: Our ENTJ Shadow
Contrary to the goofy exterior everyone thinks we also have underneath, we're actually kind of similar to ENTJs in several ways. ENTJs are our shadows. This means, we share none of the same functions. INTP functions are like this:
And then ENTJ:
Because of this, we are very different, but note that all of the functions are in the same order:
So we may or may not feel similar to the ENTJ, but if anything, we get along quite well with them. I surprised everyone I knew in college by marrying one, even though I'm pretty sure I looked like... something else. Certainly not inferior feels. Anyway, some INTPs can behave simiilarly as well. This is because when looking at dominant functions, the INTP will understand Te very well, while the ENTJ will understand Ti really well.

The main note I'd like to make here, however, is this: ENTJs are harsh on the outside (Te) but mushy on the inside (Fi). INTPs are squishy and fun on the outside (Fe) but can be very cold and hard on the inside (Ti). But we still have feels. I promise. It is just a lot harder to bring them out than it is on the ENTJ, because we don't even notice them half the time.

HSP on an INTP
INTPs are not commonly known to be HSPs, but just because it made such a huge difference for me, I feel like I should address it. HSP means "Highly Sensitive Person" and refers to a phenomenon in which certain people receive too much sensory stimuli. It is said to affect approximately 15-20% of the population, and about 70% of those are introverts, but most of them seem to be INFxs.

How HSP affected me as an INTP:
-Increased Si ~ I seem to have really oddly high Si sometimes. Like, other INTPs seem to enjoy atmospheres, but I'm so particular about creating them that I go on cleaning frenzies once or twice a month so I can arrange my house/room to have a specific atmosphere I like. If I could, I'd be able to rearrange it between various sci-fi, fantasy and cultural feels, but I can't because that would require money. So it remains slightly multicultural/fantasy and cozy because I need that cozy more than I need the sci-fi.
-Seemingly Increased Fe ~ I can tell that my Fe isn't that good still, but I *seem* to have it well-developed from my perspective. Anyone who knows me well would know that isn't true, but I thought it was for quite some time, hah. I have a lot of empathy for people to the point where I almost can be NF-Idealist about it and I can get up-in-arms about injustice. HSP makes it so that I don't have to actually experience something physically to experience it emotionally. However, I still put logic, efficiency above harmony in regards to priorities and thus it is easy to tell I'm actually inferior feels. I do happen to act on harmony more often than logic or efficiency however, because it is simply easier and I tire quickly.
-Hypochondria ~ I sometimes end up running through a million reasons (Ne) why I might be sick from something because of some little detail of my body that drives me insane. HSP increases one's bodily awareness, which Si did already as well. Worse yet, tert Si users aren't very good at taking care of themselves, so I have trouble drinking enough water, getting enough sleep, eating appropriate types and amounts of foods (sometimes I'll eat too little and other times too much), so I often think maybe I caused a problem myself. Now that I can logically deduce I'm overreacting, its not so bad, but when I get stressed out it can take over.
-Hyper-Introversion ~ I'm not actually any more introverted than the next INTP, but I have more trouble being out of my house because people disturb my required peace intake for the day :[ I need darker, quieter, calmer atmospheres than most. What is just a bright light to one person, is a supernova in my face. What is just a loud noise to someone, is nails on a chalkboard. What is just background noise is a cacophony to me. I need to have my space to recollect and recharge before having to get back out. I'd be happy to not leave my house for more than 4 hours a day, and then I could maybe tack on 2 hours worth of socialization at my house (but not over the phone - I despise phones). I also suck at multitasking. I'm supposed to be good at it because I'm a girl, but I'm not. I'm just not. I hate multitasking. It is extraordinarily overwhelming, particularly social multitasking. If I'm not being forced to respond to anything, then fine, but otherwise I need to be left alone to complete a task.
-HSP Differences ~ I don't fit the HSP description perfectly, and many of us won't. Here are my differences.
>HSPs are supposed to also be more attuned to their surroundings due to the stimulation, and I am in certain ways, but overall not really. Like I said in regards to hyper-introversion, I do seem to hear/taste/see things more strongly, but I don't really notice the minute details of the room all that quickly. Or if I do, I don't say anything and forget that I did. But, INTPs have almost no Se, so that wouldn't exactly make the strongest impression either.
>HSPs are supposed to have trouble with violence. I'm not too crazy about action movies, but mainly because of the noise and I tend to zone out and have trouble keeping up with the plot, and then the INTP issue of it simply not being that engaging to me compared to something more cerebral. I do have issues with guts. I hate seeing or even thinking about guts being removed from one's body. But blood doesn't bother me, nor even impalement. Its more the removal of parts of the body that should remain there.
>I don't avoid emotionally engaging things. I seek them out. HSPs typically avoid it because it makes them upset. I'm still trying to figure out why I like things that make me upset, but I do. Sometimes I'm even relieved after fighting with a friend. Its very strange. I just channel it into a story I'm going to write, and I am suddenly at home.
>I've never noticed a correlation between caffeine and my body at all. It does seem to make me move physically faster, but not mentally. HSPs are supposed to be strongly affected by caffeine. I don't seem to be affected much at all.

Common Reasons for MBTI Personality Theory Mistyping and Difficulties with Typing

It seems like there are a lot of reasons people mistype themselves or others, and I thought I'd provide as best a guide as I could to reasons that I have encountered thus far.

Introverts and J-P Preference
In MBTI theory, IxxPs are dominant judging types while IxxJs are dominant perceiving types. This can cause a lot of confusion. Judging versus perceiving is not a debate between whether someone is organized or not. It determines which of your top two functions is extroverted. For introverts, this is always the auxiliary function, and not the dominant, and so an IxxP can appear more adaptable and an IxxJ more structured, but underneath that outer shell, IxxJs can be quite adaptable and IxxPs can be very structured.

Male Fs and Female Ts
It does seem that when I skim the "what's my type" forum, most people like to guess men as Ts and women as Fs. Sometimes, even the poster is quite certain and later discovers they may have been wrong. There are plenty of male Fs and female Ts, however. Although it probably IS most common for a woman to be a feeler and a man to be a thinker, it is not always the case and male feelers will still use their thinking function more than a female of their same type, and vice versa for a female thinker.

HSP and Other Psychological Contributions
HSP is one of the reasons I originally mistyped myself. I was absolutely certain I was an INFJ for months, until I realized that I really couldn't possibly be an auxiliary feeler. I just thought I was because I can't help but cry at things normal people don't cry at, and I feel stuff so strongly, etc. Anyway, HSP is the only one of these I know well, but it makes one very sensitive to stimuli, and in turn, sensitive in general. Ts can be strongly moved by this and thus mistype themselves as Fs, or confuse themselves in regards to their sensing functions, which can be affected by HSP (typically, both Se and Si appear to be heightened). Sometimes, HSP can also make an extrovert believe they might be introverted.

Liking People and Extroversion
Just because you like people doesn't make you an extrovert. Introverts can like people just as much as extroverts. We just can't handle as many of them. Also, extroverts can very much dislike people.

Liking People and F-ness
Just because you like people doesn't make you an F. T types can love people too. I love people. I just don't want them around me all the time, and my emotional approach to them is admittedly shallower than a feeler's would be. Meanwhile, plenty of Fs can also dislike people if they have lost their ability to trust them.

Introverted Perceiving Functions and Perceiving Types
Introverted functions (Si and Ni) are difficult to define, and can sometimes be confused with other things. For example, I as an INTP might relate to Ni and Si, because I am an intuitive type, and because I use Si. An ESFP might feel like they related to both as well, because they would use Ni and because they are a sensing type (though it is thankfully more difficult to confuse Se and Si than Ne and Ni).

Dominant-Tertiary Loops
Every type can get stuck in a loop using their dominant and tertiary functions, and skipping their auxiliary. I'll label each loop:

INTP - Ti/Si
INTJ - Ni/Fi
INFP - Fi/Si
INFJ - Ni/Ti
ISTP - Ti/Ni
ISTJ - Si/Fi
ISFP - Fi/Ni
ISFJ - Si/Ti
ENTP - Ne/Fe
ENTJ - Te/Se
ENFP - Ne/Te
ENFJ - Fe/Se
ESTP - Se/Fe
ESTJ - Te/Ne
ESFP - Se/Te
ESFJ - Fe/Ne

So take an ENFP, for example. Their loop is Ne/Te. An ENFP stuck in a loop might appear very similar to an ENTP overall, however if one pays attention to their functions, it should become clear if the ENP is using Te or Ti. ENFPs in this loop could be highly abrasive and easy to rile up about emotional topics, but may seem to take more practical approaches to life than what one would expect.

Auxiliary-Inferior Loop
Similarly to Dom-Tert loops, I'm pretty certain someone can seem to fall in an auxiliary-inferior loop. This one is a little different than the dom-tert, because it is difficult particularly for introverts to not notice that they are behaving strangely and out-of-character. Introverts will get tired using their auxiliary and inferior functions so often, and then go home and retreat into their introverted functions.

What is happening here, usually, is usually an introvert attempting to be an extrovert. I'm not sure how/if this happens with extroverts yet, but I'm sure it can. I have yet to see an example, however, so I'm going to use myself. I am an INTP, however in high school, someone might have thought I was an ESFJ or maybe an ENTP. I appeared to use far more Ne/Fe than I actually feel equipped to use, and then came home and dwelt in my Ti/Si for the rest of the day (which my mom hated, hah). This loop is less common, but it can occur, especially in teen years when someone is still developing and experimenting with their weaker functions.

Relationship Influences
Some types may be heavily influenced by the other types around them. For example, someone else I once knew was also an INTP, however she and I are quite different. She is the only strong Ti user in her family, and therefore has a very Te sense of humor. I, on the other hand, was raised by an ISFJ father and had strong ENTP influences in my mother and brother. This provided a stronger preference for Ne and Fe than other INTPs might have. I still enjoy Te humor although my family doesn't, but there is no doubt in me that my Fe especially, was affected by my family.

Also, because I was so encouraged by my mom and brother to get out and be friendly with people, I did so (and over-exhausted myself in the process) and now many of my past high school friends are left with a very extroverted, airheaded, and friendly image of me.

Circumstantial Influences
People fail to realize that ENTPs, for example, CAN plan, even if they are not always inclined to. My mom makes plans all the time, and they are usually very detailed. She rarely follows through, but she DOES plan. Furthermore, an ENTP might be raised to need to plan, and thus have skills that would appear just as natural on them as on an ENTJ.

ISs and Extroversion versus Introversion
ISs are often mistaken for extroverts by others, because ISPs like to get out and do stuff, and ISJs can be very outspoken (ISTJ) or very social (ISFJ). Not all introverts like staying at home or doing quiet brain things like us INs.

SJs and Imagination or Quirkiness
I remember early on, reading descriptions of SJs and thinking how dull they all sounded. But then I found them in real life, and I've discovered that SJs are actually quite quirky and often very imaginative. My father exhibits a punny humor that can be attributed at least partly to Ne. Another SJ I know collects socks and scarves, and writes stories with some of the most entertaining premises I've ever heard, and another friend makes jewelry, cooks, acts, and writes creatively. They are always described to be practical, but I would revise that to say that they are simply more concerned with the here and now, physical and/or present concerns.

ENs and Extroversion versus Introversion
Almost every EN I know has thought they were an introvert at one time or another. Especially ENTs. This is probably because the stereotypical extrovert is an ES. ENTPs are particularly easy to drain, as their dominant function (Ne) is very cerebral, rather than physically active, and Ti finds humans inefficient and in the way. ENTPs who mistype themselves as introverts often mistake INTPs as broken versions of themselves, who simply never learned to socialize. But, if ENTPs are so quickly drained by social interaction, I'm sure you can imagine INTPs are even more so. ENTJs are also rather prone to believing themselves to be introverted, as well as some ENFPs. I haven't met as many ENFJs like this, though I think ENDJs are easy to mistake for introverts looking in from outside.

S-types, F-types and Intelligence
It should go without saying, but this kind of discrimination still happens on a subconscious level, I think. I've known many ST programmers (I think programming actually bores a lot of NTPs) and every SF in my life is well-spoken. Many are actually very intellectual. In fact, my grandfather is an ESFJ and my husband an ENTJ. My grandfather reads much, much more.

And many a feeler will passionately assure you using lovely words that they are indeed very smart. If you are trying to type someone you know to be intelligent, don't immediately shun the idea that they might be an S or an F.

Thinkers and Creativity
People tend to be mistaken in thinking that if you are creative, you must be a feeler because you put emotion into your work. This is by no means true, and I'm pretty sure anyone who consciously thinks about it comes to the same conclusion. Many famous artists have been thinkers. I'd like to take a moment to brag that INTPs make up a large number of famous creative peoples. I also know other T-type individuals that are quite creative - INTJs, ISTJs, other INTPs, ISTPs, ENTPs.... pretty much any T-type has the capacity. These people write stories, make jewelry, decorate food, make music, and everything else.

So if you're having difficulty typing yourself or someone else, or are second-guessing someone's type, hopefully this should help you pick things apart.

Monday, November 10, 2014


I'm going to reintroduce myself. I've done a lot of pointless rambling on my blog and dabbled in a few political posts, but honestly I'd rather stay out of the political scene (for the most part). I'll keep the good posts I've made up, but hopefully I can keep from going on too many passionate rants. I'm pretty sure no one really follows my blog too carefully, but if you have been stalking it despite the lack of recent posts, you might notice I cleaned things up a little. I left the posts I thought were interesting or well-written (enough) behind and now I hope to be a little more organized and focused.

The things I'd rather talk about on here are as follows:

Personality Type Theory (MBTI only at the moment)
Connections between the those three things

I don't really write all that much about writing, but I was going back through some of my old stuff, and I finally feel confident that I'm a pretty good writer. I'm not anything extraordinary, but I can write pretty damn well when my brain is up to it. I'd actually like to talk a lot more about "the writing life". Currently, mine is in its fetus phases still seeing how I haven't published anything, but there is definitely still plenty to talk about.

Regarding Personality Type Theory: I'd actually rather have a youtube channel, but I know sitting down and making myself look nice enough to film won't happen, and if that won't happen, then I also won't spend the time to make the editing interesting. I'll have to work on that.

Anyway, I would like to teach a little about personality type theory, and particularly make sense of the INTP to other people, since that is what I am. Every type is fascinating in its own way, though, and the way they relate to each other is especially interesting.

I'll also no doubt post up some Biblical knowledge from time to time because I'll allow that to spill into whatever part of my life I want it to. I won't be forcing it though.

Friday, April 18, 2014


  1. 1.
    the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity.
    "the worship of God"
    synonyms: reverence, veneration, adoration, glorification, glory, exaltation;

Today I was finally driven to write this. It has been irritating me for a couple of years now, but tonight on Good Friday it just hit me that I absolutely HAD to say something. I don't feel like worshipping at church.

Now I'm not trying to criticize my church - I would have left if I didn't like the church. Nor am I saying that I am entirely blameless. Of course I should be doing my best to connect with God on my own, and I don't need a band on a stage to tell me what to do. But, there's just something very wrong with worship at my church right now, and I can no longer stand it.

1. The songs are never the same
So some people may say, "I like to have new songs! It keeps things fresh and exciting!" But most of us just end up standing around mumbling and trying to keep up with the new words and new melodies. When I buy a new CD, it takes me at least a couple of days, if not a week or two before I know all of the words. And I usually listen to it over and over and over again within that time. I can't keep up with four new songs every week! Honestly, just ONE new song is enough for me, and considering the huge selection of worship songs we have that day, I don't think variety, freshness, or excitement will be a problem in considering which songs to make "the usual". Actually, I find it harder to get excited if I don't know the song.

Sure, tell me this is a matter of taste, but think about this: what if something happened to the church? What if everyone was stuck worshipping outside, or even in some basement or unfamiliar warehouse? Would we all know the same songs to sing? How long would that last?

I have attended Christian Fellowship Church for the better part of my life. Tonight, the only song I knew was "Nothing But the Blood". The worship team doesn't need to make a new album of songs every week. We just need to change it up sometimes.

2. It rarely, if ever, goes "old school", and doesn't branch out much
Why are we stuck in today? What about yesterday? Do none of those worship songs or styles apply any more? I don't even like eighties music, but I really strongly feel that the music we use to worship shouldn't be limited to one style or one era. No, there's nothing wrong with the songs we sing these days. They're good songs. But why throw out the old? It doesn't go "bad" with age. There's a reason that hymns are making a comeback in contemporary music. And no, of course most people (save my brother and probably some others) wouldn't want to go to church if they played metal for worship. But my favorite weeks have been these:

>when we sang "Jesus Freak" at the end and everyone was very involved
>when the drummer did a drum solo (though it should have been DURING worship)
>when some people were once refugees from Africa sang their traditional worship and led everyone to clap and dance along
>I absolutely love the Irish folk songs that we rip off of the Rend Collective Experiment.
>when worship played Trans Siberian Orchestra at the Christmas services.

Things like that really get me pumped up. Let's face it though: contemporary Christian music is nice and absolutely can be moving, but it usually isn't that powerful unless... we get excited. Which leads me to #3.

3. No one seems excited
I always thought the worshipping of God should be sort of like attending a rock concert. The music might not be as good, but despite the two complaints above, it can all be ignored if we are simply REVELING in God's presence. I mean, call me crazy, but when I'm hit with the Holy Spirit, I want to cry, I want to dance, I want to pace around and wave my hands like a crazy person as I talk out loud to myself about the wonderful thing I just realized. I don't do that in public - no worries - but it does happen when I'm at home. It should also be happening at church, at least to some degree.

For instance, observe these photos of a rock star from one of my favorite bands:

Jumping on stage while playing guitar and singing:

I'm not sure what he's doing specifically, but he looks very into whatever it is:

Probably singing higher than most girls:

This is Matthew Bellamy from the band called Muse. When Matthew Bellamy is singing, he jumps in the air to punchline the end of the phrase, throws his guitar over his back to get to the piano, and has been known to accidentally throw his guitar at his drummer (who is still in the band, if you must know - no hard feelings there). He has also broken his own teeth, I'm pretty sure (on accident, of course). This is because Matthew is very passionate about what he sings. If an ATHEIST band can get that passionate about various worldly topics, then why don't we get at least half as passionate about God on Sunday?

No, I don't expect our worship leader to throw guitars, play three different instruments in the same song, or even jump in the air while singing (though I wouldn't mind any of that). As I stated, it isn't about the quality of the music. Its about the passion. Its about what the people are doing. The quality of the music is somewhat important - bad quality is distracting and good quality is inspiring - but what really sells the mood is passion.

So let me ask a few questions that might make some people unhappy, uncomfortable or defensive. Why is it that when I look up at our worship team, there are people standing off to the side with microphones, but I can't hear them? Why aren't they dancing? Why do they sometimes just look scared? Is no one teaching them to be leaders? What is their purpose for being there? It actually makes it worse. If the worship leader doesn't feel like they can play guitar, sing and dance all at the same time, I completely understand (though they should be conveying emotion, of course), but what are the other singers doing? If you are standing on stage, you should be DOING SOMETHING. If you're expressing yourself in song, then I want to HEAR IT. If not, then get MOVING. I don't like being harsh, especially because I don't want to get on stage, but if you are, then you are a leader, so LEAD!

Something I have learned over the past few years is that young people are fearful. Young people are afraid of being weird. Usually. Personally, I was more afraid of being noticed than being weird, but either way, when you are young, you don't want to be singled out. You don't want to be the person that others are pointing at - I mean, if you're the only person dancing to a song it feels really ridiculous, so why start? That's how it feels to be in a congregation that isn't being led to dance, to express, or to feel. Our worship "style" is making a generation of zombies at our church! We don't know how to dance any more! I can tell you that I certainly don't. And I'm afraid to. I can't keep a beat when I clap and sing at the same time - yeah, I'm that girl. That shouldn't stop me from worshipping, but I let it sometimes. This is because when I start trying to move with the hopes that others will move with me, I can only see how painfully STATIONARY everyone is. And I am an INTROVERT. I am extremely introverted, actually*. Why is it that I feel like I'm celebrating God amidst tombstones in a graveyard every Sunday morning?

I have spoken to more than one person from more than one age group that agrees with me on this. Actually, no one I've talked to is really happy with worship at my church the way it is, and these seem to be the main reasons. I love my church - I absolutely do - but this needs to change. I want to be on fire when I am at church on Sunday morning. Not hung up on new lyrics, new melodies, with the same old styles and little to no feeling in the air. I want leaders on stage. Every church should have real leaders during worship.

*This doesn't mean I don't like people, or that I'm shy and quiet. I'm actually sort of loud, these days. But you can look up information on that elsewhere. The main thing is that introverts are not known for being bold.