# Thread: Why is Point 7 between Points 6 and 8?

1. ## Why is Point 7 between Points 6 and 8?

This excellent question was posed at Challenging the enneagram

One is tempted to answer "because of the number line, duh!" or "that's just the way it is."

However, as with anything else, the answer isn't that simple, especially when represented by a diagram such as this:

It will be necessary to expand the picture in order to discern all of the numbers.

It's also necessary to know about the Laws of Three and Seven. Mathematically, these are expressed as:
1/3 = .333333...
2/3 = .666666...
3/3 = .999999...
1/7 = .1428571...
2/7 = .2857142...
3/7 = .4285714...
4/7 = .5714285...
5/7 = .7142857...
6/7 = .8571428...

Ignore the musical notes and their corresponding HZs on the chart (which correspond to the 7 major white keys on the keyboard, A - G), and consider purely the mathematics of this. Starting at point 9, at the top of the enneagram , you will see a .999999. At point 1 you will see .1428571..., At point 2 you will see .2857142..., At point 3 you will see .333333..., At point 4, .4285714..., point 5, .5714285..., point 6, .666666..., point 7, .7142857..., and point 8, .8571428...

Returning to the first yellow 9 on the inside of the colored circle, the numbers regress consecutively and clockwise from 9 to 1, creating 9 radials emanating from the center of the circle and intersecting the edge of the colored circle between each enneagram point (although imaginatively, they proceed beyond the edge). The first (1) just happens to land on point 1 on the enneagram. As the numbers regress around the circle, wrapping from 1 back to 9 again, each enneagram point just happens to correspond to points on the 9 - 1 clockwise regression.

Outside of the colored circle there are two concentric yellow circles with numbers lined up with the numbers on the inside of the circle. The two numbers on the imaginary line emanating from the edge of the colored circle, added up with the number inside the circle, numerologically must always add up to 3, 6, or 9. Starting with the yellow, vertical 999 at the top of the enneagram, 9+9+9 = 27, and 2+7 = 9. To the right of that you will see a 258. 2+5+8 = 15, and 1+5 = 6. To the right of that you will see a 417. 4+1+7 = 12, and 1+2 = 3. Etc.

The outside yellow circle, considered in clockwise fashion, contains consecutive odd and even numbers laid along in this pattern after the top number 9: 2, 4, 6, 8, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, etc.

Adding up any 3 consecutive numbers on the inside yellow circle will always yield, numerologically, a 3, 6, or 9.

The colors of the numbers do have meaning, but as far as I can tell this is only to indicate correspondences with the Laws of 3 and 7. 3s, 6s, and 9s are always represented with yellow. 5s, 8s, and 2s, are represented with green, and 4s, 1s, and 7s are represented with red. Notice that they also hint at the points of integration and disintegration for points 1 and 8. Red and Green are also represented on the divisions by 7 on the inside of the circle. For example, .857142

And that's why point 7 lies between points 6 and 8 on the enneagram.

2. Originally Posted by badger055
I expressed that idea in the second line of the OP.

3. But... why should any of that necessarily apply to human psychology? Why should the laws of three and seven predict how people behave under conditions of stress/security, or influence which personality types should be placed together in groups? I understand that there are lots of patterns in the numbers and in the Enneagram symbol itself, but I've never come across a convincing explanation for why those same patterns should exist in human personality.

4. Originally Posted by Octavarium
But... why should any of that necessarily apply to human psychology? Why should the laws of three and seven predict how people behave under conditions of stress/security, or influence which personality types should be placed together in groups? I understand that there are lots of patterns in the numbers and in the Enneagram symbol itself, but I've never come across a convincing explanation for why those same patterns should exist in human personality.
The Laws of 3 and 7 are universal, metaphysical laws. The mind, and personality, reflects the order of the cosmos.

5. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Way_enneagram

"The enneagram according to Gurdjieff shows the "Law of Seven" and the "Law of Three" united and so some explanation of these laws is necessary here.

The Law of Seven or law of octaves, according to which phenomena evolves in seven steps; and the Law of Three, according to which phenomena are produced by three forces, are presented by Gurdjieff as global laws appearing on all scales and essential to his cosmology. This cosmology offers a view of how the world operates said to derive from alchemy and more ancient sources, and to complement or complete modern experimental science rather than to contradict it. According to this cosmology everything is material, including consciousness and spirit, and all matter can be assigned a "density"; consciousness and spirit for example having lower "densities" (and therefore higher "vibrations") than for example water while for example rock has a higher "density" and lower "vibration" than water and so on.

The diatonic musical scale is said to be an ancient application of the Law of Seven and a convenient way to study it. The major musical scale is used with short intervals at mi-fa and ti-do (Ouspensky refers to Ti as "Si" and So as "Sol" and the diagrams on this page reflect his usage). In other words if one thinks of a standard keyboard and takes for example middle C as Do then the following six white keys, DEFGAB will represent the rest of the octave, and the next white key will be the higher C. There will be black keys between each of the white keys, except between E and F (the mi-fa interval) and between B and the higher C (the ti-do interval)

In any process described in terms of the Law of Seven the Mi-Fa interval and the Ti-Do interval are said to be shock points where outside help is needed if the octave is to continue to develop as intended. A failure to recognize this in terms of human projects is said to be a major reason why things go wrong in general. The octave of electromagnetic radiation that appears as visible light, and the Periodic Table of the Elements are said to be examples of physical phenomena where the underlying Law of Seven can be detected (although no detail is offered here). It should be noted that the musical scale Gurdjieff is quoted as using is not the modern standard musical scale but Ptolemy's intense diatonic scale associated with the Renaissance composer and musical theorist Zarlino.

The Law of Three holds that three forces act on any event, which can be called Active, Passive, and Neutralizing forces, or simply First, Second, and Third forces respectively. Humanity is said to be "third force blind", to have difficulty recognizing the third force, which may appear to us in the guise of a result or of a background environment. In terms of the Law of Seven one of the three forces appears as the "do" of the octave and the other two appear as the "shocks" (which also function as the do of new octaves) The explanation of these laws in In Search of the Miraculous is largely in abstract terms, with some detail given for the so-called "food diagram" described below and the cosmic octave, the Ray of Creation.

The enneagram shows the Law of Seven and the Law of Three in a single symbol with the three forces joined in a triangle at the 3,6 and 9 points, and in addition seven inner lines following the 142... sequence. The meaning of these seven inner lines is not by Ouspensky's account made clear by Gurdjieff. One shock point is shown on the enneagram at point 3, which is the Mi-Fa interval where it might be expected. However the other is at point 6, at the So-La interval. It might have been expected to be at the Ti-Do interval, and Gurdjieff is presented as offering this apparent mistake as a mystery to be solved. Ouspensky offers the solution that the shock at point 3 itself develops as an octave to point 6, where its own Mi-Fa interval occurs. This second octave cannot develop unless it has a shock at its own Mi-Fa, and this is the shock which in fact occurs at point 6. The example of the "food diagram" enneagram summarized below might clarify this."

6. Originally Posted by Mal12345
The Laws of 3 and 7 are universal, metaphysical laws. The mind, and personality, reflects the order of the cosmos.
The obvious question, then, is how do we know it works? Plenty of people don't relate to the dis/integration points of their type, or relate about equally well to two non-adjacent points. So do those people not fall within the natural order of the cosmos? As I understand it (and I'll admit I haven't done a huge amount of reading on the spiritual/non-personality aspects of the Enneagram, so correct me if I'm wrong) the symbol (and the laws of three and seven) apply to any process or system because they are fundamental laws which are, I assume, analogous to the laws of physics. However, what we might call the "laws of psychology" don't apply with anywhere near the same regularity as the laws of physics; things get a lot more messy and complicated when you're dealing with humans. So I don't think it makes sense to assume that the geometric properties of a symbol like the Enneagram are going to apply to human personality with any degree of regularity.

7. @Mal12345, I've read that the only 'real' tritypes would be 258, 369, and 147, and the logic seems to go along with what you express in your first post. What do you think of that?

8. Originally Posted by brainheart
@Mal12345, I've read that the only 'real' tritypes would be 258, 369, and 147, and the logic seems to go along with what you express in your first post. What do you think of that?
The idea that there are 3 real tritypes probably won't mesh with the empirical data, such as test results.

9. Originally Posted by Octavarium
The obvious question, then, is how do we know it works? Plenty of people don't relate to the dis/integration points of their type, or relate about equally well to two non-adjacent points. So do those people not fall within the natural order of the cosmos? As I understand it (and I'll admit I haven't done a huge amount of reading on the spiritual/non-personality aspects of the Enneagram, so correct me if I'm wrong) the symbol (and the laws of three and seven) apply to any process or system because they are fundamental laws which are, I assume, analogous to the laws of physics. However, what we might call the "laws of psychology" don't apply with anywhere near the same regularity as the laws of physics; things get a lot more messy and complicated when you're dealing with humans. So I don't think it makes sense to assume that the geometric properties of a symbol like the Enneagram are going to apply to human personality with any degree of regularity.
The question 'how do we know it works' is answered through my personal experience. It works for me.

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