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Why The Late Iran President Ebrahim Raisi Was Probably An ISFJ

President Ebrahim Raisi addressing
President Ebrahim Raisi addressing

The ISFJ in Power: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

President Ebrahim Raisi

Ebrahim Raisi, whose full name was Ebrahim Raisoldati, recently passed away in a tragic helicopter crash. He’d been Iran’s president since 2021. 

The global geopolitical atmosphere is currently very volatile. His death adds to the tension since Iran is a major actor in the Middle East. 

It’s been confirmed that the helicopter he was on crashed due to bad weather. Still, there are already a number of conspiracy theories surrounding the circumstances of his death.

The discovery of the helicopter’s charred remains sent shock waves around the world. That’s because Ebrahim Raisi’s leadership style was so distinctive. 

How was Ebrahim Raisi able to wield power so unforgettably? He was an ISFJ. Let’s explain the good, the bad and the ugly. 

The former Vice President, Mohamed Mokhber, has quickly been named acting president. But this is what Ebrahim Raisi will be remembered for.

1. Conservatism

President Ebrahim Raisi replying with hand gesture

Ebrahim Raisi preferred to do things in the tried-and-tested way instead of coming up with new solutions. This is the hallmark of introverted sensing (Si), the ISFJ’s lead function. 

Introverted Sensing is the ISFJ’s true superpower. Introverted sensing is all about working with systems that already exist.

Using introverted sensing, Ebrahim Raisi was able to handle thorny geopolitical issues by building on foundations that had already been laid. Apart from strengthening these old foundations, he also brought back diplomatic strategies that had been discarded. 

Introverted sensing gives ISFJs incredible staying power. It makes them determined, committed, and resolute. 

For example, Ebrahim Raisi began working in Iran’s judicial system when he was barely an adult. He gradually rose through the ranks. Nearly 40 years later, in 2014, he became the first deputy to the chief justice. This career highlight paved the way for his eventual presidency. 

ISFJs love organized religion. That’s because introverted sensing thrives in settings steeped in tradition, history, and meaningful rituals. For example, during his time in Iran’s judiciary, Ebrahim Raisi was a Muslim jurist. 

Interestingly, Ebrahim Raisi habitually wore a black turban to signify that he was a descendant of Prophet Muhammad. He was born in Mashhad in Iran, a place of strong historical, philosophical and religious significance. His training under important religious scholars was deeply important to him. 

2. Relationship with Others & The Public 

President Ebrahim Raisi group photo

One word to describe ISFJs? Devoted. 

ISFJs combine their lead introverted sensing function, with their second extroverted feeling (Fe) function to produce unparalleled devotion to their duties and relationships. Extroverted feeling (Fe) is about creating good and harmonious relationships. 

Think of a ship on choppy waters. Introverted sensing together with extroverted feeling is the ISFJ force that stabilizes the ship and stops it from capsizing. 

For example, ISFJs have been known to surrender their personal desires for the greater good. Introverted sensing working together with extroverted feeling exemplifies the concept of the ‘greater good’ for ISFJs. 

Ebrahim Raisi was marked by deep devotion. His devotion was so strong that unlike previous presidents, he never had a single disagreement with Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Iran’s power structure is quite unique. The Supreme Leader is the most powerful person, followed by the president.

Ebrahim Raisi made an excellent president because he dutifully adhered to the Supreme Leader’s directives. He was so dutiful that he became the Supreme Leader’s de facto successor-in-waiting, although that was cut short by his sudden death. 

Another example is that instead of insisting on a clear-cut political identity or vision, Ebrahim Raisi leveraged multiple soft tactics to succeed in his political career. That way, he was able to unite many of the infighting factions in his party behind his candidacy and leadership. 

Ebrahim Raisi was also the grand imam of the Imam Reza shrine. It was established in the 7th century. In this leadership position, the late president tended to religious pilgrims and handled large sums of money which he distributed to the poor. This is a very key expression of introverted sensing combined with extroverted feeling. He was appointed to this position in 2016 by his long-time mentor the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. 

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei also appointed him to be a member of the Assembly of Experts. This group was put together to choose a replacement for the Supreme Leader when he died. 

Ebrahim Raisi went on record advocating for women, teachers, artists, and intellectuals. He also talked about helping Iranian citizens find a way through the heavy sanctions that the state was under. 

He also spoke on behalf of the Palestinian people especially during the current war in Gaza.

3. Sinister Side

President Ebrahim Raisi wall picture

Despite some positive qualities, there was a very sinister side to the late Iran President Ebrahim Raisi that won’t be easily forgotten. 

For one, he was a ruthless politician who would do anything to maintain the status quo and stay in power. He deployed this third function, introverted thinking (Ti) to achieve some of these ominous political goals. 

How does introverted thinking work for ISFJs? Introverted thinking is about making logical decisions by disregarding emotional considerations. People with introverted thinking as one of their top two functions use it to become accurate, efficient, and knowledgeable. 

But this function isn’t the ISFJ’s strong suit. At an ISFJ’s unhealthiest moments, introverted thinking leads them to dismiss collective sentiment (extroverted feeling) to maintain their cherished status quo (introverted sensing). 

Because an unhealthy ISFJ will seek to maintain a status quo at whatever cost, they can seriously alienate people. 

Maintaining the status quo in the case of the late President Raisi led to the loss of many people’s lives and livelihoods. A lot of his decisions had multiple long-term negative effects on ordinary people. For example, the violent crackdowns that he ordered in 2022 and 2023 led to hundreds of Iranians dying and many more being injured or disabled. 

The outsized negative effects happened because he was a powerful leader and politician. This probably would not apply to a regular ISFJ who has limited power over small social environments. 

He was known as the Butcher of Tehran for his role in the 1988 executions of Iranian dissidents. It’s been estimated that more than 30,000 people died in these executions. 

President Raisi mandated Iran’s Hijab and Chastity Bill in 2022. Not adhering to this law can lead to up to 10 years in prison! Iranian woman Mahsa Amini was detained because of this bill and later died in custody. Her death led to those protests where President Raisi’s brutal crackdown orders led to many deaths and injuries. 

Many of the late President Ebrahim Raisi’s scholarly achievements and professional titles were disputed. To gain social status, he probably lied about some of them!

Finally, Ebrahim Raisi almost certainly became the president through fraud and rigging. That’s another example of a warped introverted thinking (Ti) function that overrides the majority’s needs and desires (extroverted feeling) to establish or maintain a particular status quo (introverted sensing). 

It’s been reported that many Iranians celebrated with fireworks and dancing when they heard that their President had died. That’s how badly an ISFJ can hurt people!

Few Iranians have come out to mourn their late President. This lukewarm sendoff is likely deserved for the pain and suffering he caused. 

4. Paranoid 

President Ebrahim Raisi close-up

The last function is our weakest function. For ISFJs, this function is extroverted intuition (Ne). 

People who have extroverted intuition as one of their top two functions tend to be lovable, energetic idea generators who talk and operate at lightning speed. The world is their oyster. 

But for ISFJs, extroverted intuition is a doozy. It makes them unreliable, paranoid, and prone to catastrophizing. 

When an ISFJ’s extroverted intuition function has not been given room to grow gently, the ISFJ becomes unreasonable and even outrageous. 

This happens when the ISFJ has been compelled to change but does not want to change. They act out. It feels like watching a toddler have a tantrum.  

When Ebrahim Raisi clearly lost the elections in 2017 by a wide 20% margin, he launched a formal complaint with Iran’s Guardian Council using a 100-page long document! He also refused to congratulate the winning candidate. 

He once stated that Iran had turned their crushing economic sanctions into “opportunities for advancement,” even though that wasn’t all the way true. 

He also justified draconian measures like the cutting off of thieves’ hands. These measures are based on extremely literal interpretations of Islamic Sharia law. 

He supported men and women being segregated on the basis of sex, saying that, “the majority of women do a better job in a totally relaxed atmosphere.” 

He supported Internet blackouts and wanted Western culture censored. He also shockingly called homosexual people savages. 

Farewell Late Iran President Ebrahim Raisi 

Despite his serious flaws, the late Iran President Ebrahim Raisi was an important figure from a geo-political lens. He carved out a distinctive place in politics and international relations using his unique ISFJ skillset. 

His death leaves a gap and lots of unanswered questions. 

To avoid the worst ISFJs everywhere should learn to sustain and grow the compassion that comes so naturally to them. Once they learn how to keep their hearts open despite the pain, they can accomplish almost anything.

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