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The Enneagram as a Map of Love

When we are lost or embark on a new adventure, we often seek direction.  Fortunately, at the click of a button, we can type into Google Maps where we are and where we are headed.  Step by step instructions appear and they often come with options, such as,  “Avoid toll roads, fastest route, or hazard ahead.”

What if we had Google Maps for our interior? In a way, we do.  We have the Enneagram, which serves as a sort of map for our interior.

Recently, I was upping my facial regimen because my sister is getting married. I was doing all the self-care things to show up looking my best as her matron of honor.  In the process of that, I purchased a fancy new moisturizer.  A few days after the first application, my face suffered  an allergic reaction, with red, swollen areas and itchy skin.  The dermatologist recommended no makeup for one to two weeks, along with an over-the-counter cream to relieve the itching.  I thought to myself, “Everyone will see my flaws; there is no hiding.  How will I hide what I don’t want others to see?”  The next thought was, “Actually, I don’t really care; it feels a bit freeing.”  

I paused.  This wasn’t about makeup.  I am fine to show up on Zoom calls as I am.  This is about what makeup is used for: hiding imperfections and enhancing features.

What is happening on the outside often holds a mirror to what is happening on the inside. This experience made me wonder, “What is my Enneagram type concealing?  How have I enhanced the features I like?  What wasn’t allowed by my Enneagram type?”

The answers to these questions all came down to  imperfection.  Somewhere deep inside I had a story that I wasn’t worthy of love unless I appeared a certain way.  

Using the Enneagram as a map, I found my inner coordinates. Just as a GPS system uses coordinates of latitude and longitude to find location, the Enneagram has patterns that serve in a similar way.  The hidden dimension I turned toward was this expectation of perfection to receive love.  I am extremely hard on myself,  working  to conceal anything that could be a threat, including intense emotions, shame, or even my own light. 

When we have a map handy, we can locate ourselves and find our way to love.

The Enneagram helps us see that we don’t have to deny or hide our true selves to receive love.  When we become aware of those well-worn inner highways with patterns of their own, we see that they show us where we have forgotten our own love. 

It is as if we have packed our bags to travel roads which promote messages like, “Love is earned,” and, “Love has conditions.”  We buy into this when we can’t see that we are carrying cosmic levels of love within.  This is  revealed again and again:  The love we seek is within us, yet we continue journeying to access it.  We continue to unpack our bags as we explore this exquisite life, uncovering that love is already part of our true nature.

Guided Audio Meditation

Tune into your breath, notice your body’s patterns, and speak what you love with this guided audio meditation by Pamela Johnson.

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