Enneagram Insights: The Teamwork Between the Law of One and Love

The Enneagram holds many aspects (core type, wings, arrows, centers of intelligence, instincts, virtues and vices, holy ideas and fixations, stances, etc.) that all affect how we operate in the world. This is one of the reasons I find the Enneagram so fascinating and helpful. It is as if there are multiple transparent overlays stacked upon one another, revealing this amazingly intricate system that gives me insight into what is going on with me and helps me see how I move about in the world. But to take in these many aspects of me, I must approach this stack of transparencies and the picture they reveal with Love. 

We cannot see, we cannot keep our eyes open to all that is true about us, without the presence of Love to guide and hold us when we encounter our more challenging pieces. Knowing there exists no trap doors out of the circle of belonging, knowing there is no snare we can step on that will cause us to be ejected, that is the wonderful gift Love gives us all. And it is because of this gift that we can hold open our eyes and see ourselves, just as we are, as we travel the path of awareness and growth. I like the picture of a mother hen gathering all her chicks—the good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful—and proclaiming, “You are mine! You are mine!” That is Love. 

Enneagram Insights: The Law of One Reflected in the Enneagram’s Circle

The Law of One, depicted by the circle that holds the nine points together, says every part belongs.

I want us to begin together in that lovely place of safety. Let’s start with the practice that everything belongs, which means all of me, all of you, and all of everything. Nothing has been kicked out! Often, we don’t mind kicking certain things to the curb but don’t want what we value to be kicked to the curb. Instead, here we are beginning in a place where nothing gets judged as out of place. This concept-turned-practice can be very challenging, but let’s challenge ourselves.

Today, play around with this picture and explore what it is like to believe and practice welcoming every part of ourselves, every part of whoever is with us, and every part of what is happening. This is not denial. This is not indifference. This is a beginning place that can calm and center us for right action—and can lead us to some surprising consequences. Beginning with a YES to what is, rather than a protesting NO, opens us up to what our NO might have missed. But don’t take my word for it—see what you find!

Sali Honess-Ondrey, Certified Spiritual Director, LCSW