THE ENNEAGRAM AS A MAP
Series: The Enneagram
Imagine a beautiful landscape in front you. An open field with green grass, dotted with wildflowers of every color. At the far end of this field, at the very edge of your vision, you can see a distant mountain range rise out of the ground like arms stretched to heaven. The light of the sun streams through the parting clouds and its warmth fills you from inside to out as a calm breeze caresses your face. You can’t help but smile in wonder at such a scene.
As you hold this picture in your mind, imagine that it is now time to go home. You are in this wild place with no vehicle, no other people, nothing. This changes things doesn’t it? The landscape is no less beautiful, but you being there has become daunting. You start looking around trying to figure out where you are and where you have come from, hoping that you can find some kind of clue to help you figure out where you are going. What would be really helpful right about now? A map.
Photo by Sébastien Goldberg on Unsplash
Our lives are a lot like this. Our stories are set an incredibly beautiful and wild and unforgiving landscape. All of the sudden we look up and we don’t know where we are. We aren’t really all that clear where we have come from, either. Without any points of reference, where the heck are we headed? Yikes!
The Enneagram is like this map, handed to us in the midst of our confusion. It gives us a starting point and reference points along the way. It helps us understand where we are, where we’ve been and where we are headed. And, finally, it helps us find our way home.
Because we are always trying to get home, aren’t we? Not necessarily a house that we live in somewhere, but the place that is actually home: full acceptance, love, goodness, a magnetic pull back to wherever we come from; for what we were originally designed for… a completeness.
Photo by Daniil Silantev on Unsplash
Like a map, the enneagram shows the landscape exactly as it is, not how we wish it was. It shows the open plains and the mountains, the 100 foot cliffs and the raging rivers. If we are a thousand miles away from where we want to be, it doesn’t sugar coat it. As we navigate our lives, the enneagram points out the obstacles that are there. It does us no good to pretend like those obstacles don’t exist or pretend like they aren’t as bad as they really are. When we see the lay of the land clearly, both the good and the bad, we can then make the best navigational decisions along the way.
And we don’t have to make this journey alone. Along the way we can find each other, combining our maps and experiences, working together to all get home. All of the sudden we can see the beauty of the landscape again. With a map to give us direction and some trusted buddies to travel with… we are going to be okay.
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Deeper Ministry – The Nine Types List
The Road Back to You by Ian Cron and Suzanne Stabile
Enneagram Institute RHETI Type Indicator Test
Enneapp – A complete mobile Enneagram Guide
Center for Action and Contemplation Website
The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective by Richard Rohr and Andreas Ebert