The Enneagram is Not Just Another Personality Typology
The Enneagram is a dynamic system that describes nine personality types each with distinct habits of feeling, thinking and behaving. Each type has a coherent pattern in how the world is perceived, yet is biased by perceptual filters that cloak or amplify certain aspects of reality. Our perceptual filters encourage a dominant habit of attention motivated by common human needs.
Few personality systems delve into the motivations of our behaviors. The Enneagram helps us to understand our habit of attention and what needs we are trying to fill, basically the need for security/survival (food, shelter), love and belonging. When we inquire into the need that is motivating a certain behavior, we begin to perceive through the eyes of compassion. Although we may have different ways to go about filling our needs, as described by our Enneagram type, we all have the same underlying needs.
In addition, few personality typologies offer an avenue into the depths of who one is spiritually. The Enneagram is a system which integrates the quest for psychological health and spiritual awakening. The more we are aware of our habitual way of perceiving ourselves and the world, the more choice we have to choose differently.
The Enneagram ultimately helps us to experience our essence as Pure Awareness or Love Itself. All the mystical spiritual traditions have some form of meditation or prayer that emphasizes the development of the Witness or Observer. This is one of the Enneagram’s greatest assets. It encourages this kind of self-observation and development of awareness. From a spiritual perspective the Enneagram actually helps us to discover who we are beyond our types, our Essential Self. It also helps us develop compassion for the brilliance, yes brilliance, of our survival stategies, as described by our Enneagram type.