"For the sensation type, time is fully present NOW, in-depth."


"The sensation type simply must act, because
action is the only appropriate response to
the stimulus he is receiving."


 Sensation types are concerned primarily with the current and immediate. In no other type is there so well developed an ability to perceive the present moment in all its depth. Sensation types do not integrate past experiences into their present activities. They meet events in terms of existential reality, with little concern for how they got to be that way. Life is happening; where it comes from and where it is going are matters of minor importance. That it exists, and can be perceived, is paramount.
   The object perceived through the senses at any one moment is all of reality. It is the sensation type's version of truth. He respects the concreteness of the object, reads its message, and reacts accordingly. In order for a thing to exist one must be able to feel, taste, touch, hear or see it. Sensation types eventually learn that the nonvisible and non-manifested also are real. But they never wholly believe it.
   Grasp. It is the time orientation of the sensation types that accounts for their efficiency in dealing with crisis and emergencies of any kind. They can respond to the slightest cue, grasp the nature of a situation at a glance, and because they are comfortable in dealing with the present, they can act unhesitingly on what they see. They are not hampered by trying to decide between alternative courses of action; the event itself tells them the correct behavior. They are more skillful in handling tools, materials and persons than are individuals in other categories. Their responses - so swift and so frequently effective - indicate that they possess total competence, which can immobilize opposition and lead others to agree when they are essentially doubtful. This is a common trap, especially for thinking and feeling types. Thinking types assume that no one could possibly be so effective without having thought the thing through and decided the response was consistent with principle. Feeling types presume that the sensation type is aware of others' feelings and will not act hurtfully. Neither assumption is true. The sensation type has not thought about things, nor does he concern himself particularly with how others feel. He simply must act, because  
action is the only appropriate response to the strength of the stimulus he is receiving. If the sensation type is a decent person, he will turn this skill to good ends -- consider George Washington and the American Revolution. If he is a tyrant, like Stalin, he can dominate an entire nation to the great disadvantage of millions of its citizens. Sensation types are greatly concerned with power and, in the short run at least, they are the most skillful in power plays.
   Impatience. Any delay in meeting his needs annoys a sensation type. Waiting is equivalent to denial. The sensation type who is told to be patient and endure a delay of a month or two will attempt to maneuver others into fulfilling his wishes, and, if this cannot be done, he is quite likely to dissolve the relationships. The capacity to wait, to delay gratification, comes from the experience of knowing that time flows. Sensation types do not experience time as flowing. They have learned that it moves - they can read the clock. But their inner experience is not of a flowing of time. It is rather the experience of a present that is rich, full, deep, and always there. They are dragged from one moment to the next by their activities, not by the perception that time marches on.
   The lack of past and future also accounts for the sensation type's constant desire to experience new sensations. Since he can neither remember nor anticipate, the only way he can determine whether a sensation is pleasing is actually to have it. He prefers a positive sensation, even a negative one, to no sensation, which is intolerable. 
It is this that drives him into constant activity. It is rare to find a sensation type who is even a little bit lazy. 
   Since the sensation type is known through his actions rather than through his words, the cinema is particularly appropriate for presenting his portrait. The movie Alfieabundantly illustrates the objectivity and moment-to-moment orientation of the sensation type. This whole film is a record of Alfie's inability to detach himself from the stimuli of the moment. When he finds a woman, nothing prevents him from trying to seduce quickly and efficiently. It would never occur to him that it was wrong to do so, for he is acting not on principle but on the conviction that good sensations are right and proper in themselves. As a result of Alfie's attempt to "brighten up" the wife of a sick friend, she become pregnant by him. An abortion is arranged in his apartment. Alfie cannot bear to stay there. He goes for a walk. In spite of the drama taking place in his own rooms, once he is out of the door, Alfie literally forgets the abortion; he is easily diverted by anything that crosses his view in the street. Only when he returns to the apartment, and sees the dead fetus, does it strike him that something serious has happened. Until then, neither the fact of the abortion, nor Lilly's suffering, nor the existence of the baby had any reality. The film's end finds Alfie the same as ever, in hot pursuit of sensations. #




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