Stephen DeGrace <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>Can't say I ever cottoned to the enneagram,
>personally. That one *does* seem like voodoo tome
>*shrug*. Could be that I'm biased by the online tests,
>tho. I tried a couple times, and apparently I an
>exactly even in seven of the types as my highest score
>and the other three are close behind! Whatever :P.

Well, I should mention that the online Riso/Hudson test is
only considered about 85% accurate IIRC--which is good as far
as such tests go but not enough to rely on in itself.

The reason that I like the enneagram is that my sense that
it complements Jung/MBTI so well.  In my view, the MBTI only
captures the psyche at the mental level--in essence it is
a data-processing model.  Data in (perceiving), data out
(judging).  The enneagram captures the psyche at the emotional
level.  It describes the very deep and fundamental architypical
motivations humans can have.  BTW, the fact that the two systems
are describing two related but separate aspects is why I so
vehemently reject Riso's one-to-one correlations, which I consider
a serious mar on his otherwise indispensible work.

Another thing that might turn off some people is the fact that
the enneagram types are placed on a very weird new-agey symbol.
Don't let that fool you.  As developed by Riso, the enneagram,
I feel, is every bit as insightful as the MBTI.  At times,
even more so.

>The thing I find _really_ interesting, moreso than the
>times when it _does_ work like that, really well, are
>the times when it goes haywire and fails to fit
>decently. The boundary conditions of any theoretical
>system to my mind is the most interesting area to
>study it - and attack it <g>. To deal with some
>"haywire" cases, and to try and make the fact that
>Keirsey's empirical Temperament observation often
>seems to really work not be _completely_ out of left
>field in respect to the theory is why I devised my own
>heterodox typing theory... :P Which was fun :)

Of course, all of these systems have refinements to fall back
on whenever they appear to break down.  The enneagram has wings,
stress and security points, and instinctual subtype refinements;
MBTI has tertiary and inferior functions which can crop up
unexpectedly;  even astrology has planets and houses and
a practically endless set of ways they can interact.  If you
use these systems prudently, they can be like a map you can use
to mine rich insights about the human condition;  if you take
them to extremes, you end up chasing tautologies that do more
to obfuscate than enlighten.


---   Mike