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  1. #1
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Default Why should I believe the Enneagram is accurate?

    I was reading yesterday that the Enneagram was developed by some ancient Muslims, then further developed by some others. Who's to say that any of those people were even right?

    Who's to say there are only 9 basic motivations in the world? What if there are 12?

    Somebody tell me why I should believe it's accurate at describing people.

  2. #2
    Enigma Nadir's Avatar
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    You could say the same about MBTI. These are questions you can ask but only yourself can answer.
    Not really.

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    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    MBTI is function based and creates its 16 archetypes from functions, and the functions together supposedly cover "all cases." (It can still be debated whether this is accurate, but at least the logic is followable.)

    The Enneagram is essentially a collection of nine archetype seemingly driven more by the diagram than vice versa. There is no inherent proof that there are only nine archetypes of human beings (and the Threes can sometimes become a catch-all since they are defined as not being defined, in a sense).

    Really, I take each archetype in the Enneagram on its own, as to its validity in terms of reflection in the average population/life... and I think it can offer some general insights on how people better or worsen based on their general personality. (The directions of integration and disintegration.)

    But you just don't know.... regardless of what the Sufis said.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by INTJMom View Post
    I was reading yesterday that the Enneagram was developed by some ancient Muslims, then further developed by some others. Who's to say that any of those people were even right?

    Who's to say there are only 9 basic motivations in the world? What if there are 12?

    Somebody tell me why I should believe it's accurate at describing people.
    I don't think it was developed by Muslims, but by some people who were into that New Age spirituality/chakra-type stuff or something. That was what I heard.

    I don't really think it's accurate, but the archetypes and system are interesting enough that I like to try and look at people through that lens to see how well they can fit.

  5. #5
    To the top of the world arcticangel02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by INTJMom View Post
    I was reading yesterday that the Enneagram was developed by some ancient Muslims, then further developed by some others. Who's to say that any of those people were even right?
    Why do I sense your sudden disbelief in the system is because you heard Muslims developed it?



    For what it's worth, though, I agree with Jennifer. Enneagram makes less sense to me than MBTI does.
    ANFP:
    Extraversion (52%) ---- Introversion (48%)
    Sensing (26%) ---- iNtuition (74%)
    Thinking (16%) ---- Feeling (84%)
    Judging (5%) ---- Perceiving (95%)

    9w1 so/sx/sp

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    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    I don't think it was developed by Muslims, but by some people who were into that New Age spirituality/chakra-type stuff or something. That was what I heard.
    Here is the claim by Riso, the proponent doing the most to stabilize the Enneagram as a "legitimate tool."

    2.Where did the Enneagram come from?

    The history and transmission of the Enneagram are mysterious and complicated affairs, although they become clearer if we distinguish between the Enneagram symbol and the descriptions of the nine types which are gaining such worldwide attention. The symbol (the circle with the inner triangle and hexagon) is ancient, dating back to Pythagoras or even earlier. The concept of the nine personality types has elements rooted in several traditional teachings such as the Seven Deadly Sins (beginning in the 4th century), and the Kabbalah (beginning in the 12th century) but the psychological descriptions of the types, on the other hand, are modern and are the work of modern authors.

    George Gurdjieff brought the symbol to the West around 1900, and Oscar Ichazo was the first to synthesize the symbol with elements of the teachings about the types. He was the first to identify the core qualities of each of the nine types, and his work was expanded on by the psychiatrist Claudio Naranjo who also introduced the panel method for gathering information about the types. Naranjo's work, in turn, has been expanded on by Don Riso and Russ Hudson who added many new elements to the early Enneagram system-most notably the lengthy systematic descriptions of the nine types, as well as the nine internal Levels of Development, the "inner logic" of each type.

    For more information, see The Traditional Enneagram and Enneagram Contributions, as well as the "Origins" chapter in Personality Types and "Ancient Roots, Modern Insights" in The Wisdom of the Enneagram.
    This claim is pretty common by Enneagram proponents.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  7. #7
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arcticangel02 View Post
    Why do I sense your sudden disbelief in the system is because you heard Muslims developed it?
    ...
    I was just stating a fact.
    The whole system seems awfully "mushy" to me.
    Too confusing, not well enough defined, too many variables, and there seems to be no consensus from one description to the next.
    That is what is generating my lack of trust.

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    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arcticangel02 View Post
    Why do I sense your sudden disbelief in the system is because you heard Muslims developed it?
    Why do I sense that you believe INTJMom to be a less-than-tolerant person? I'm sure she didn't mean it that way, she was probably just mentioning that off-hand. I've had questions about the accuracy of it myself, and I'd never even heard that.

    Now, let's not start jumping to conclusions about other's motivations and getting angry here, okay?

  9. #9
    Senior Member INTJMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Here is the claim by Riso, the proponent doing the most to stabilize the Enneagram as a "legitimate tool."

    This claim is pretty common by Enneagram proponents.
    Thank you, Jennifer.

  10. #10
    To the top of the world arcticangel02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athenian200 View Post
    Why do I sense that you believe INTJMom to be a less-than-tolerant person? I'm sure she didn't mean it that way, she was probably just mentioning that off-hand. I've had questions about the accuracy of it myself, and I'd never even heard that.

    Now, let's not start jumping to conclusions about other's motivations and getting angry here, okay?
    I'm not getting angry! ^^

    I just raised my eyebrows because that was all she stated before saying she doubted the system. And then said "Who's to say that any of those people were even right?"

    To me that sounded like her main reason for disbelief was the people who had created the system.

    Thus, I said something.

    And now she's clarified and there will be no further misunderstanding or offense caused. Easy!

    Quote Originally Posted by INTJMom View Post
    I was just stating a fact.
    The whole system seems awfully "mushy" to me.
    Too confusing, not well enough defined, too many variables, and there seems to be no consensus from one description to the next.
    That is what is generating my lack of trust.
    I agree with you, and those reasons make perfect sense. Thanks for clarifying.
    ANFP:
    Extraversion (52%) ---- Introversion (48%)
    Sensing (26%) ---- iNtuition (74%)
    Thinking (16%) ---- Feeling (84%)
    Judging (5%) ---- Perceiving (95%)

    9w1 so/sx/sp

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