A labyrinth is a symbol of the path of life’s journey. It is an ancient form of meditative walking, or prayer walking. It is a symbol that invites you to reflect on the journey to the center of your deepest self and back out into the world with a broadened understanding of who you are. It invites you to be mindful of your body, your thoughts, and your feelings.
It is this reflection on heart, head, and body that prompted me to create an Enneagram labyrinth. An Enneagram labyrinth is not as simple as the traditional one-path symbol. It does not offer one way in and one way out. Like life, it offers many options with each having value and providing the opportunity for reflection and learning. It offers a dynamic path that invites you to explore the various dimensions of your personality. It invites you to reflect on what your personality means for you, and in relationships.
An Enneagram labyrinth is not as simple as the traditional one-path symbol. It does not offer one way in and one way out. Like life, it offers many options with each having value and providing the opportunity for reflection and learning. It offers a dynamic path that invites you to explore the various dimensions of your personality.
Unlike systems that make us feel like we have been “put in a box,” the dynamic nature of the Enneagram teaches that you have a core number and that it is related to several other numbers. The numbers on either side of you are wings and the behaviors of those numbers may shape your personality differently at different stages of life. The Enneagram includes internal lines, or arrows, across the figure showing two other characteristics that shape your personality, sometimes in a steady ongoing manner and sometimes in moments so that your “stress” and “security” numbers can influence you in different ways on different days.
As a 3 on the Enneagram, I experience my stronger 2-wing in terms of how I relate to people while striving for success, but I also experience my 4-wing at times drawing me more deeply into my own feelings, allowing me to connect with a more creative, and at times individualistic approach to what and how I want to achieve my goals in life. In times of security, at 6, I value working with others and the relationships that influence me. And, in stressful times, I am prone to withdraw, close off, or at least slow down in ways that reflect a 9.
That’s a lot for one paragraph, and in reality, how healthy and whole I am feeling affects how I draw from the energy and resources of these different parts of my personality. What can I learn from reflecting on these things? As one example, I can think about how to draw from the high side, or healthy levels, of 6 and 9 rather than the low, or less healthy, side.
So, how does the Enneagram labyrinth encourage such reflection? Begin at your core number, and walk the numbers connected to your personality. Take your time, move back and forth, walk through a day of your life, or an experience when you remember feeling the various numbers having been at work in your life. You can also walk through the numbers of relationships that are central to your life.
Take your time as you walk. There is no right or wrong way, no right or wrong path. Reflect as you go.
Enjoy your walk. And, may God’s love and grace guide your journey.
“Your life is a sacred journey. And it is about change, growth, discovery, movement, transformation, continuously expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your intuition, taking courageous challenges at every step along the way. You are on the path, and from here, you can only go forward, shaping your life story into a magnificent tale of healing, courage, wisdom, power, and love.” – Caroline Adams
To learn more about the Enneagram or to use the Enneagram Labyrinth with a small group or organization, contact Jon.