The Enneagram is a centuries old psychological system with deep and abiding roots in sacred tradition. The word Enneagram itself comes from the Greek and refers to a circular figure with nine points on its circumference. The history of the Enneagram has been addressed, in detail, by many authors from antiquity to contemporary time.
It is now, however, of increasing interest to focus on the Enneagram of the human being, referring to and recognizing the fullness of human creation. What is evolving is a dynamic tool and map that integrates the psychological and spiritual dimensions of ones experience. The Enneagram enables the student to see their radical or core humanity and the sacredness held within.
The Enneagram describes nine distinct and fundamentally different patterns of thinking, feeling and acting. It informs us about the basic coping strategies we employ to survive and meet our needs, what motivates our actions and behavior, and what determines how we establish relationships and interact within them. It is valuable to recognize that each of the nine Enneagram types has a particular and unique path, or high road, that when followed leads to personal and spiritual development through the discovery of ones own potential and qualities of being.
Thus, rather than be obstructed and limited by self-serving or destructive patterns, we are enabled to fulfill this potential. Awareness and knowledge is expanded when we are able to see the various ways that people view life. Recognizing and acknowledging other points of view and the differing ways individuals perceive, process, and respond to their environment increases our capacity for self-observation and knowledge of ourselves in the context of human relationship.
It is in studying the Enneagram that we can observe the reality of what it describes and thus, become an aware and conscious conduit through which life can flow. Study of the Enneagram also provides us with a key that enables us to unlock the perceptual filters that distort our awareness and block our energy. This allows for new choices around our normal reactivity and automatic behavior. We come to know and understand the recurring patterns and life themes that seem to weave through our lives.
Ultimately this knowledge becomes the wisdom that guides and reconciles us with the ever-evolving being-ness and life energy that we truly are.