Why was Allport not as popular as other theorists of his time? Part II

This was written in a response to Professor Jesse Byrd of Washington State University (WSU), asking why Allport wasn’t as popular as other theorists of his time. Part I addressed the psychosocial environments within which surrounded Allport, this one is more on Allport and Ryckman, the author of the book and the localized experience correlated to 12 AM – 1:30 AM (Byrd & Hodges, 2021).


Watching Tombstone, it occurred to me that it’s possible to now examine Allport’s psychology. There is that moment where Titchener probed Allport with “Why did you let him work on that problem?” (Ryckman, 2013) (I’m going to break the regular flow of academic text now and split on over to drama, it, really feel this, like a Zen Koan or Mondo, especially the Blue Cliff Record).

Allport’s major professor stepped in, “You don’t care what Titchener thinks.” (Ryckman, 2013) Now at this point, it’s sort of like taking a test. Pay attention to the most valuable answer, not the most correct answer, this part’s going to trip a scientist up. What’s the most valuable text to look at in the field right now to add value? Or is it the starving person on the street, or the child downstairs playing with toys alone? Or is it the partner walking in, or the laundry downstairs that is just finished, beeping, about to smell bad if left in there for too long, to where the partner’s sensitivities to the smell would be triggered. Help out, just help. Beyond transferences and psychologies. What’s the best help? Stop. This is beyond empathy, this is love, real love. Moving Away, Moving Toward, Moving Against, it’s beyond these.

The trouble with the Trolly Problem is that it’s not possible to ultimately solve, everything is just an incomplete guess. The Halting Problem guarantees that it is impossible to know the outcome of saving this or that life, so in this sense Allport and the other psychologists up until him, and beyond, I think figured it out. Skinner seemed to turn the dial to 11 on evidence, and now the check valve was open. One person in the room dissented on evidence and this allowed the others to move higher. What a fascinating concept!

I think Allport got it, as Ryckman (2013) wrote “his”, are these really Allport’s experiences from the frame of “Allport-World-View”? Experiences classically conditioned, operantly conditioned, and observationally impressed upon “Allport”. The psychologist distribution on the planet at this time understood some aspect of anatta, yet the environment was not fully ready for it. No it didn’t teach him. This is the mistake. Bandura’s Observational Modeling was at play. It wasn’t in the words most likely, Allport already had these, it was probably in his professor’s movements superpositioned with words. The oral tradition (sound familiar? Freud knew). That’s the private key of psychology, as opposed to the public key. I’d be curious who Allport’s professor was in that story actually. Allport didn’t have the oral tradition, a tradition passed between the wise to the knowledgable, and some insecure in their simple living, or fear of obliteration by spears and weapons, gated the content.

Just the story, a family life “marked by trust and affection, along with a strong emphasis on the value of hard work” (Ryckman, 2013) ? This is amazing considering the prior chapters. Scholarly? Good with words, but poor at sports? “Allport” is not yet integrated with the body. Allport hasn’t resolved something, latency is a spectrum, it’s not hard fast (no pun intended, see? this stuff is real). He was inspired by adolescent concerns (Ryckman, 2013). Imagine that? That’s interesting. He followed his older brother to Harvard? Why did he follow? He really made an effort to attend (Ryckman, 2013). That’s interesting right? The writer used the word “squeeze”, “strict”, “matriculate”. Matriculate. This connects with the Latin word mētra (register, lot) and mēter (mother) (Harper, n.d.).  The lot’s mother? I wonder what book, is the register/lot of the mother, well it’s right here in the etymology, matriculare, to register (Harper, n.d.). 

It’s more valuable to take the lessons and loop it around to study not just who is written about, or what the patient talks about, but also the production of what the organic phenomena at present is creating, and allow it to burn off like an incense stick. In this case Ryckman’s burning off too. This way you can handle this situation, the sublimation is intense with these psychologist’s writing. Why would Allport volunteer so much? That’s intersting. Seeking to arrange a private meeting with Freud? (Ryckman, 2013) The question mark was more valuable to allow the reader to know that it was a question first, and the citation after. That just makes sense.

Allport visiting Freud, the child in the lobby, Allport thought the boy had a dirt phobia (Ryckman, 2013). Why is this? The boy apparently said “dirty man” (Ryckman, 2013). Well, what if the superpositionally collapsed wave function was man instead of dirty? That’s how this plinko machine works, and to know requires the private key. What if Allport’s own biases gave him a blind spot? 

Allport thought that “the boy’s abhorrence of dirt was a result of his mother’s obsession with cleanliness,” (Ryckman, 2013), where Freud hesitated after hearing the story from Allport, and asked, “and was that little boy you?” (Ryckman, 2013). That’s interesting isn’t it? Allport was flabbergasted (Ryckman, 2013). Flabbergasted. The word is “perhaps an arbitrary formation alluding to flabby or flapper or aghast.” (Ryckman, 2013). This is interesting… let’s take a tally:

Squeeze, strict, matriculate, meaning mother/lot, and then flabbergast, which is difficult, because it’s hard to trace definite elements (Harper, n.d.); there’s the private key again. Is Ryckman is demonstrating something? Continuing, apparently Allport thought Freud was conditioned to clustered thoughts around neurotic defense (Ryckman, 2013). So here’s Allport, that’s never practiced sports, exhibiting a series of Going Against, or is he genuinely at Maslow’s peak? Is he self-actualized? I don’t think so, not so fast. Then Ryckman focuses on “Allport’s” belief that “psychology often plunged too deeply into the psyche…” and that it as a field would serve people if psychologists focused on manifest conscious motives (Ryckman, 2013). That’s interesting to me. Yes, Ryckman’s selection of content and the words to describe it are at play along with the words to investigate by yours truly. Allport’s own behaviors in these moments demonstrates something manifest, conscious, and we might see his motive, Ryckman’s, and yours truly. The entire lineage can be seen in one go… or…

So here we are back (Bach) to Titchener. Maverick. Why would this brain settle on Tombstone, the film, in the prior post, which is adjacent Maverick? Coincidence, too deep into the psyche, or just manifest conscious motive? It’s interesting this Tombstone… this entire experience, IS the dream.

“Unreported silence and stares” (Ryckman, 2013). 

“Not to be unnecessarily bothered by rebukes or professional slights and to persue, ” (Ryckman, 2013) happiness, equal liberty and justice for all. All beings created equal. Isn’t that interesting? See what happens with the advertisement for science? It’s a manifest conscious motive for attribution, for credit, for self-esteem… and it’s valuable for scientific endeavor. Because these papers are very valuable, yet it comes at a cost, like the switch of the Trolly Problem. How do you know what’s more valuable to society? For individuals? 


Allport studied prejudice, expressive movements, rumor, and attitudes and values (Ryckman, 2013). I find that interesting. He learned to go beyond moving toward, moving away from, and moving against. He studied moving, by stopping his own aggressions.

“It is not uncommon in textbooks on general psychology to find wedged into the last chapter a separate and rather abrupt treatment of personality, as if to reward the reader who has waded through piles of abstractions concerning the generalized human mind. Personalistic psychology would reverse the procedure. The person would form the point of departure” (Allport, 554). Then there is a passage about space and time blending. Like right now writing this paper. This is the most valuable place to look. This is where the study really is. See this process.

Take this next part with a grain of salt, existing culturally conditioned lexicon is at play. “The secret of man will not be found in a reductive analysis of his being, but only by tracing coherently the course of his becoming” (Allport, 1961, p. 555). Existentalism? (Allport, 1961, p. 558) “To be able to make a life-wager is man’s crowning ability” (Allport, 1961, p. 558). He later writes “A patient with a compulsion, a phobia, an obsessive thought has no freedom at all. He is ridden by his neurosis” (Allport, 1961, p. 563). Allport is pleading, he’s writing an opus, appealing, but is it really him, or that little boy, that Freud pointed out exactly? A Reaction Formation to a Dirty Man stuck on thinking all of this is just sex.

Freud was onto something… and I wonder if Allport realized it. Drilling deep into the psyche was thinking that Freud was talking about Allport as a little boy, he was talking about Allport sitting in that very chair seeing Freud, after many other criticized him for the same thing. Parapraxis is an interesting thing… why else would Allport go looking for it in the words? He knew it was real and it risked his credibility. Allport was trying to survive to go after the real prize by balancing appeasement, which is realistic behavior, with intellectual autonomy; very clever, but Freud knew, he saw it directly, yet was subject to remnant echoes of the gestalt too.

Thus the crowning ability (Allport, 558). “Liberation from the pleasure-success-duty” (Allport, 1961, p. 565), stages of life. Happiness, real happiness. And it’s very threatening to self-view. (Imperialism). And it’s very threatening to we-view. (McCarthyism). Who would build the cities (hyper-canopies) of a few man’s dreams if people were allowed to not be subject to the parking meters of property tax to ensure local access to labor? If that parking meter wasn’t in place, nobody would move and live beyond pleasure-success-duty cycles. Psychology and sociology was waking up.

The principle character in Chinese/Japanese for martial is bu, it means to stop… spear. Stop this exact duty cycle.

Is it possible that all of this text is just to train someone to teach someone else to do that? And is science less about finding truth, and more about looking for someone who can find it? Themselves? It’s not someone, that’s the problem. It’s not self, just as was realized by beings thousands of years ago. Psychologists, figured out, it’s the language, it’s the permutation of linguistic pinko. That… is threatening to the view that “we have not figured out yet,” it doesn’t want to be left alone, that weening stage.

“Positive psychology gives full and lavish attention to the first two stages-to pleasure… little to say about duty motive… less to say about <the|a> desire for philosophic<al|ious>  and <re-reading|religious>, except to say that such desire is a defense mechanism, an escape device no different in kind from suicide, alcoholism, and neurosis. Existentialism, by contrast, gives full recognition to duty (responsibility) and to will-to-meaning. Yet oddly, existentialism says little about pleasure and success as motives.” (Allport, 1961, p. 567). 

So I must ask a question in the grand scheme of samsara… why… were Allport’s theories not well known? I think this speaks for itself… Allport was committed to liberation, it’s not a path for many, even psychologists trying to survive. “By contrast, a mature life-style allows fully for man’s effort to cope with all the harshness of life in a realistic manner-to know the worst in life and to make the best of it-through the use of integrative rather than defensive mechanisms” (Allport, p. 566). “Psychology cannot provide full enough knowledge to warrant the final choice of one interpretation of man’s nature and the rejection of all others. The best we can do at the present time is to seek the philosophical formulation that on the whole seems to be most coherent with available psychological evidence,” (Allport, 1961, p. 567). And where is coherence? Here and now. Tap tap goes the keys.

Where’s the body of Allport? The sports, the lack of sports, the headiness? This is a grand example of moving against. And here it is, “No society holds together for long without the respect man shows to a man. The individual today struggles on even under oppression, always hoping and planning for a more perfect democracy where the dignity and growth of each personality will be prized above all else,” Allport put beautifully at the end of the Pattern and Growth in Personality (Allport, 1961, p. 573). Freud hit him squarely and he rang the rest of his life, a changed being and there was nothing he could have done about it, because Skinner’s operant conditioning kept Allport coming back for more, and bouncing right off, a prized possession.

I wonder, did Allport bounce off of others this same way? The tiny seed of craving produced so much. And how do I know this? Unconditional Positive Regard. Self-view is ignorant, it truly is. Not self, none of this tapping and typing, perception at play.


Wundt’s thought that self was holding back the field of psychology is correct, and the others realized it too, in an environment that encourages increasing the frequency of changing styles of life, and identification view to prevent World War III from happening with transient-self-adornment with products, goods and services, to profit off each transaction. “He|She|They> transcends them|-view> all|-view>.” (Allport, 1961, p. 573). “The individual|plurality>, <had |striv<ed|ing>|stop> ever|> for integr<ity|ated> and fulfillment|ality>, <has|is|will> exist<ed|s|ing> under|over> all|none> form<s|less> of social|less> life|death>-form|less>s as varied|static> as the <nomadic|feudal> nomadic and feudal, <capitalist|communist> capitalist and communist,” (Allport, 1961, p. 573; MDL Analysis added for demonstration of Allport’s, the name is no pun intended, superposition density) speaks about. Counter-transference could see this as “biting the hand that feeds you”. 

Allport’s work threatened self-view, the bedrock of “we” [the people], and McCarthyism was the soup de jour — and this paper could too, but no biggie, “you don’t care what Jesse thinks,” It’s not me. It wasn’t me in the past. It will not be me in the future. It’s not me because, nor will it be me because, nor was it me because. Not even a planck’s constant width. These are just <permut|quantit>ative displays of phenomena, refracted by mitochondrial [redacted].

However, and here comes the Oracle of the Matrix (Wachowski & Wachowski, 1999) (of which matriculation is suggested to be related (Harper, n.d.), imagine that?) without the Moving Against of Allport, nor Jung’s hero, and here comes the Oracle, would he have knocked over the vase to point out the goings on inside the vase now fallen on the ground cracked and displaying its insides? Temet nosce (know thyself). Would this have been written without Byrd’s prompt, and would he have asked without… this is not valuable to delve into. Just right here, right now, tada-ima. Ichi-go, ichi-eh. One life, one meeting.

Of course self-diagnosis is not possible. Because it’s an illusion.
Phenomena diagnosis is better.

This is like Bodhicitta in Buddhism. The phenomena of “Allport” makes sense given the name, all ports, “comparative studies are useful but organic studies are more to the point… the full resources of our cognitive equipment are needed as tools of research” (Allport, 1961, p. 573).

Where’s the organic study? It’s right here. Click click. Tap Tap. The fan whirs, this is the psychological sense, paired with a sociological imagination.

True Victory really is Self|-View> Victory.
Quick Victory [indeed].

Allport threatened the very driver of manipulation for <self|other>-view, <we|they>-view, <company|brand>-view, itself.

“<They|they-view> won’t understand <you|other-view> [R]oi,” Sensei said, “Sensei knowingSensei knowing because <they|they-view> don’t understand Sensei.”

From the one, strike the many,
and there was stillness,
yet beyond.

And what is sensei? Sen-Sei.
One|-ness-view> who|that> went before.

Congruent, Empathy,

is under.

Not even that.
The only thing left,
is the blood and shit…
stained robe.
an interchangeable
indicator for…
a womb.


Attachment to Becoming.
Self-View is the pitch to the monkey’s paw.
Attachment is not self.
Self-view is the hook and loop fastener,
Indra’s Net, ensnaring
limitless beings…
that which
the flow.

Let them|they-view> go.
Carrying the yoke of lifetimes,
Let them go.
is not

Now? This?
This is just departure.
Mind the Gap [Angle].


Allport, G. W. (1961). Pattern and Growth in Personality. USA: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Inc.

Byrd, J., & Hodges, R. A. E. (2021, April 8). Thread: Let’s talk about Allport . Washington State University Blackboard. https://learn.wsu.edu/webapps/discussionboard/do/message?action=list_messages&course_id=_284093_1&nav=group_forum&group_id=_942377_1&conf_id=_426444_1&forum_id=_443325_1&message_id=_7684907_1.

Harper, D. (n.d.). matriculate: Search Online Etymology Dictionary. Online Etymology Dictionary. https://www.etymonline.com/search?q=matriculate.

Ryckman, R. M. (2013). Theories of Personality. (pp. 187-188). Belmont: Linda Schreiber-Ganster 

Wachowski, L., & Wachowski, L. (1999). The Matrix. Warner Bros.