Ok, I know before I've mentioned that I'm not a big fan of the Enneagram personality system, but I didn't really say WHY, or didn't share my honest thoughts for almost a year and a half now on this forum. But after seeing the Enneagram-Tritypes-Do-they-exist thread, I'd like to say I don't think ANY Enneagram types exist, and you guys might honestly be wasting dozens of hours of your time, if not hundreds, in a personality system that is rooted in abstraction.
There is nothing mathematical about it. And the origins are "a mystery", as I quote below.
It's fictional and made up. At least with socionics, it's based on the workings of Carl Jung, Aushra Augusta, etc. The reason socionics MAKES SENSE is for one, the functions correspond with different parts of the brain... I've read MBTI studies (here's a basic link, Functions and Areas of the Brain look up some of the actual studies if you wish) , of course which is a different system, but is similar to our 16types model, of which different areas light up in the brain at different intensities, for each of the 16 different types, for various tests, including creativity, linguistics, logic, etc.
Which isn't surprising, considering innately, logic and emotion can be opposites, so is what is real versus the theoretical, having an outside-world orientation versus the inner-world, and then a difference in decision-making, valuing more one or the other. Second, socionics is very easy to grasp theoretically, the idea that we are psychologically compatible with one other person, a dual, considering humans have evolved to have two genders, mate with two people, so it makes sense that we are subconsciously searching for our 'other half'.
And third, the # of opposite functional areas of the brain, corresponding with a total # of types, that is, 2*2*2*2=16, makes sense.
But the Enneagram doesn't. 9 different types? Where does 9 come from?
It seems as though the Enneagram is a primitive attempt to describe personality differences among people... before Socionics, the obviously better model, became popular, in the 1970s. Someone just drew out 9 different descriptions and decided to make their own personality system. Where does the Enneagram originate? :
Exactly as I thought. Oscar Ichazo pretty much just "made up" the 9 types. Well, I can do that! There's nothing mathematical about it. They mention Pythagoras... for THE USE OF THE SYMBOL. Well, I can make my own personality system with 11 different types, and then use the symbol of an eagle... but that doesn't mean my system is bird-related, anymore than Enneagram is mathematics-based. Heck, Pythagoras probably used the symbol for something else, and George stole it because it looked cool, and it had 9 points, and added it to their 'system'.Originally Posted by http://www.enneagraminstitute.com/FAQs.asp
Oh, but wait! Oscar didn't completely 'make up' the 9 types, he based it on "teachings" dating back to the 12th century. So wait, these are correlated with the 7 deadly sins... so why aren't there 7 different personality types in the Enneagram, but why are there 9? :
A MYSTERY! REMAINS A MYSTERY!Originally Posted by http://www.enneagraminstitute.com/history.asp
So really, the Enneagram doesn't have anything to do with the Seven Deadly Sins. The Seven Deadly Sins were derived from the idea of 9 different personality types, not vice versa. Rather, the 9 different personality types are just based on ancient ideas, of which the exact history is unknown.
... Many people criticize religion, but at least there are Biblical records to base your allegiance on, not to mention scientific records of a worldwide flood... so WHY do more people easily accept the Enneagram, but oppose religion? Enneagram is based on 'ancient ideas', of which nothing exact is known. Based on nothingness.
Heck, why not study astrology then, with 12 different personality types. That is at least based upon the phases of the moon, the 12 'moonths' of the Gregorian calendar, etc., and has something mystical about it that makes sense, the revolution of the planets. It's more aesthetical in nature than just 'ancient ideas' which the Enneagram is based on.
OH BUT WAIT! If you study astrology, you have to learn all the EXCEPTIONS: rising sign, moon sign, this planet here, this one there, etc... to explain why NOT EVERYONE OF THE SAME TYPE IS NECESSARILY EVEN SIMILAR in some cases. Because it's made up, non-mathematical, so the creators add "exceptions" to patch all the holes that comprise their creation. But can you continually throw a patch over a hole in a rowboat, and expect it to work?
Wait, the Enneagram has exceptions then too... different wings, different 'variants', etc. etc. to try to explain everything. But how does compatibility work? Why is it seemingly different for each type?
You know what, I might as well just make up my own personality system! I think I'll have 11 different types. Why? Because I like the number 11. Just because it's a cool #, you know? Then I'll use a cool symbol too, something that looks ancient, that might add credibility. And hey, I'll squeeze everyone on this forum into one of my 11 types:
1) bubbly nice
2) party pooper
3) awkward yet nice and outgoing
4) awkward and firm and rude
7) sexually promiscuous
9) cool under pressure
10) compulsive buyer
11) video game addict
Yes, these 11 types shall comprise all personalities... of course I'll add exceptions, and make wings, but it'll all make sense, because look, it matches the cool symbol.
I'm hearing the counterargument now: "OH, BUT MD, you're view of the Enneagram is this way because you're a Xwx... which means you fit this, and of course you doubt it... see, it's just like many INFps tend to doubt socionics at first, and think everybody generally fits everything." Of which I have to say: THAT DOESN'T MEAN THE ENNEAGRAM IS STILL BASED ON ANYTHING VALID! Hey, you know what I can say? In my system, guess what, type #10, the compulsive buyer, ALSO tends to doubt my own system!!! But guess what, OF COURSE MY 11 TYPES SYSTEM IS STILL VALID, DUUUUUUUUUUUHHHHHHHH. Hahaha. (insert another stupidly happy face here)
Sarcasm aside, this pretty much is my view of the Enneagram. When it's history is based on "ancient ideas", nothing concrete, and there is nothing mathematical about it, I just feel that it is simply a primitive and outdated way of classifying people as different types. I don't see any reason why it should be taken seriously or used in any form as a personality system.
Perhaps someone can change my mind, and explain why it should be taken seriously... I'm always willing to be open-minded. But I've doubted the Enneagram since I came here, and figured I'd finally be honest with my thoughts, even though I might offend many people here who seem to like the system. Anyway, what do you guys think?