Thursday, January 20, 2005

Another Enneagram Post

All right...I swear...after this I'll do my Spinoza reading. *sigh*

I figured tonight I'd write about Fours, since 1) I'm a position to know more about them than any other type (naturally) and 2) self-analysis is one of the facet's of a Four's behavior, healthy or unhealthy.
Although the fear of flaws or imperfections in one's emotional health is a big fear for a Four, one that goes unnoticed is the fear of not leaving a mark on the world. A Four feels that his identity needs to leave an impact to be "important" and "worth something"; therefore he will go to great lengths to put a stamp on his environment. Sometimes it can be scary for a Four to consider that maybe his life will not ever be discussed and praised by others; that his works and ideas will never be put forth by some professor in university classroom in the distant future; that others will never look at him with the same clarity and intensity that he looks at himself.
The things you will often hear a Four say:

"Not many people understand me. It's just because I'm different."
"I'm one of a kind."
"___ is one of the things that makes me unique."

The hardest thing for a Four to accept is that there are some six billion other people who are one of a kind as well. The paradox of humanity is akin to snowflakes; even if no two flakes are the same, they're still pieces of snow. We all strive for the Nine Needs:

-order
-love
-success
-identity
-knowledge
-security
-excitement
-control
-peace

We just approach them in different ways. Fours would measure their success by how in tune they feel with themselves; Eights would measure their success by how in control they feel at any given time. Conversely, since the prime struggle for a Three is sucess and admiration, they will measure their identity based on how successful they feel.
Rather than drone on and become verbose and pedantic, I think I'm going to finish with a few relevant quotes from, of all creatures, Yoda. Take them for what they're worth; I happen to love the guy.
(NOTE: For contiguity's sake, I may replace some words with more relavent words, such as "identity" for "Force.")

"You will never find Identity until you overcome your fear of truth. Truth and Identity are one. This will take a great deal of practice, patience and faith. Clear the way for Identity. It will soon become a trusted ally to you again. "

"You have adopted the belief that you are separate [different] from others. You are not. What you do to others affects you more than it affects them. Think of yourself as a single leaf on a great tree. All that you encounter is part of that same being. This is why you must love all that you encounter."
(This also applies to Fives.)

"Your identity is this and more...it cannot be fully described with words. You must feel your identity to understand it."

Note that he did NOT say "You must understand your identity to feel it." Many Fours operate under the assumption that the first task on their list is to understand themselves. This is usually counterproductive. Instead feel, listen, sense, whatever--but let the feelings come without a need to necessarily understand them fully. Enjoy someone's embrace without trying to understand why they like you. Let a friend be angry at you without having to know exactly what made them snap at you. Create without knowing why you felt moved to do so. And if not knowing or not understanding ever distresses you, remember the words from Harold & Kumar:

"The Universe tends to unfold the way it should."

5 Comments:

Blogger Dymphna said...

Enough about Fours, Hamlet. Let's hear about Ones, whose perfection shines in the...oops, little spot there on the Perfection. Let me just get a cloth and some spray...

~D

12:16 AM  
Blogger Gryffilion said...

Yeah,I guess I should stick to Spinoza. Now *there's* a guy who knows verbose.

10:52 AM  
Blogger dymphna's double said...

Well, here's S's opposite: Lincoln's second inagural speech.And Lincoln was a Four, by the way.

So there is hope for us all.

2:16 PM  
Blogger Gryffilion said...

I could've SWORN he was a Nine.

2:52 PM  
Blogger Dymphna said...

Lincoln suffered deeply from melancholia. So bad sometimes that he was mute with pain. His son's death only increased his load, not to mention his wife's life-long mental fragility.

There is a new biography out claiming to prove that Lincoln was gay. I think he loved people and they loved him back. Why does everythinnnnng devolve to gender politics? Talk about trivializing a life...

~D

3:40 PM  

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