Mapping the human personality
"The Enneagram, if nothing else, teaches us—that our worldview is the produt of habitual conditioning that can be overcome through the rigorous challenging and deconstruction of our assumptions." Mario Sikora
The Enneagram of Personality is a powerful tool for personal and collective transformation. Stemming from the Greek words ennea (nine) and grammos (a written symbol), the nine-pointed Enneagram symbol represents nine distinct strategies for relating to the self, others and the world. Each Enneagram type has a different pattern of thinking, feeling and acting that arises from a deeper inner motivation or worldview. We navigate our life with one of the points at our core, though we have each of them in us, the one at our core is fundamental to our life navigation.
Type One is principled, purposeful, self-controlled, and perfectionistic.
Type Two is generous, demonstrative, people-pleasing, and possessive.
Type Three is adaptable, excelling, driven, and image-conscious.
Type Four is expressive, dramatic, self-absorbed, and temperamental.
Type Five is perceptive, innovative, secretive, and isolated.
Type Six is engaging, responsible, anxious, and suspicious.
Type Seven is spontaneous, versatile, acquisitive, and scattered.
Type Eight is self-confident, decisive, willful, and confrontational.
Type Nine is receptive, reassuring, complacent, and resigned.
Determining our personality type through the Enneagram does not put us in a box, but helps us see the box from which we experience the world. With this awareness, we can step outside of our limited perspective. Personality is an effective way to navigate this world, but challenges arise when our point of view becomes rigid and we get stuck in automatic habits. By discovering these unconscious patterns, we can lead more fulfilling lives, enjoy healthier relationships, and connect to our true essence.
The system of Enneagram of Personality was developed only in the last forty plus years, but the Enneagram symbol is believed to have roots as an ancient sacred Sufi teaching that was introduced to the West by the mystic teacher G. I. Gurdjieff about 100 years ago. While the Enneagram of Personality is used all over the world by psychologists, business people, and spiritual seekers, it is not yet universally recognized for the deep insights it offers. The tendency is to label ourselves a "6" or a "5" and to decide that is who we are. This is not correct. The Enneagram doesn’t tell us who we are. It shows us all of our habitual ways of being who we are not. The personality the number describes is like a mask we wear to help navigate us through our life.
Enneagram # Instinct Body Effected Natural
8 Action/Anger Physical Body Outward
9 Action/Anger Physical Body Neutral
1 Action/Anger Physical Body Inward
2 Emotion/Shame Emotional Body Outward
3 Emotion/Shame Emotional Body Neutral
4 Emotion/Shame Emotional Body Inward
5 Thinking/Fear Mental Body Inward
6 Thinking/Fear Mental Body Neutral
7 Thinking/Fear Mental Body Outward
We each add unique skills and view points to our human society. If we were all the same life on Earth could not work as well as it does. All of the types working together gives a blend of talent that collectively sees life holistic. Our individual strategies are
being perfectionist, productive and sincere (Type 1),
helpful and attentive to the needs of others (Type 2),
performance oriented and crafting appropriate self-images according to the situation (Type 3),
seeking to be creative and unique (Type 4),
gaining knowledge and expertise in a particular field (Type 5),
being loyal, stable, watchful and ready with plans (Type 6),
being active, entertaining and inventive (Type 7),
strong, invulnerable and protective of the weak (Type 8),
bringing people together and creating harmony in the group (Type 9).
We live our life using our core enneagram type as a filter to experience life. There are however levels to the enneagram in which we exhibit, Healthy, Average, and Unhealthy characteristics. Healthy means that we are aware of our personality but are not driven by its impulsive needs. Average means we start to see how our actions are controlled but are not able to live always beyond it. Unhealthy means we are stuck in the densest forms of our personality.
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