For Intermediate and Advanced individuals and couples In working with couples, each person does his or her own work of self-exploration and changing patterns. The couple relationship is like a hothouse for the fixated behavior; it brings out the best and the worst, providing many opportunities for freedom and true love. When the Enneagram is used for liberation or awakening, it is understood that the themes of suffering are based in the distorted perceptions of the ego fixation. The only one that feels unloved, criticized, distrustful, etc., is the fixation. When the fixation is dissolved or released, the suffering that was caused by fixated identity disappears. The focus of the work using the Enneagram is to release the illusion of fixated identity.

This workshop will focus on the use of the Enneagram in the couple relationship as a tool for liberation or awakening.

Part 1: The core presentation of the initial process of attraction; how fixated behavior gets triggered; a brief description of how each fixation relates in relationship; and examples of couples who have attended workshops or private sessions.

Part 2: Couples are lead into processing their initial attraction, how their patterns now trigger each other, and how to work with the patterns as they show up in order to release them.

Part 3: The conclusion explains how fixation can be released using the process of couples work.

Part 4: Questions

Using the Enneagram in working with couples adds a different dimension than other modalities of couples therapy or coaching, particularly if the Enneagram is used for awakening. With awakening as the focus, the aim of the therapeutic relationship is freedom from fixated perception — therefore behavior. The dynamics of the relationship are excellent fodder for recognizing patterns of ego identity and releasing them.

Lissa Friedman received an MA and an Ed.S in Mental Health Counseling, and a Ph.D. in Art Therapy. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and a Marriage and Family Therapist. She has been in private practice since 1984. She has been working with couples for over 20 years.

Dr. Friedman began studying the Enneagram with the Arica school, established by Oscar Ichazo in 1986. She was an apprentice teacher from 1992 to 1994. Since then she has studied the work of Almaas, Jaxon-Bear, Maitri, and Naranjo. She began presenting workshops on the Enneagram in 2001.

Lissa Friedman has published four articles in the Enneagram Monthly: The Subtypes and Movement ( April, 04), Working with Couples for Awakening (May, 04),The Ego is the Seed of Essence (July,’04), Stripped Naked-From Fixation to Freedom (Dec.`04). Her book, Enneagram of Awakening: A Path to Freedom, is in review.

Lissa Friedman


2005 IEA Global Conference

San Francisco, California, USA

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