Anyone who has done serious spiritual or psychological inner work encounters a discouraging phenomenon: having experienced new states of freedom and expanded consciousness, after a few days (or hours) the old personality patterns reassert themselves as if the profound experience had not occurred. One of the main causes of this return to our familiar perspective is the superego or `inner critic.’Its job is to keep us inside the familiar boundaries of our ego self. The superego is also the part of our psyche most often responsible for causing us to feel shut down, disempowered, and alienated.
These two sessions will explore the specific role the superego plays in the nine Enneagram types. The sessions will employ a visual approach with pictures and diagrams to help participants understand specifically how the superego drives much of our ego activity. Attendees will learn how the superego creates each type’s inner conflicts and self-defeating habits, and explore ways to counteract its deadening, limiting effects.
The Psychic Structures are concrete”blueprints”for the inner mechanisms of each type. They are symbolic representations of psychological processes providing a “gestalt”of each type. They are especially powerful for visually oriented people. With these vivid and dynamic models, you will be able to see what is happening in each type and why. With this kind of understanding, true compassion and a depth of awareness can arise, making possible a resolution of each type’s illusions and inner conflicts. This material has not been published in any Riso-Hudson books. The sessions will also include music and experiential exercises for reclaiming our presence and vitality by revealing the superego’s false and restrictive patterns and self-concepts.
Don Riso, M.A., is one of the foremost teachers and developers of the Enneagram in the world today. A best-selling author in the field, he is President of Enneagram Personality Types, Inc., co-Founder of The Enneagram Institute, and a Founder of the IEA. Don’s five books, co-authored with Russ Hudson, have sold over a million copies worldwide and are available in many foreign editions. He lives in upstate New York and continues to teach in Europe, Japan, China, South Africa, South America, and throughout the United States.
Russ Hudson is one of the principal scholars and innovative thinkers in the Enneagram world today. Russ brings a long-standing involvement in several spiritual traditions, including the Gurdjieff Work and A.H. Almaas’Ridhwan School. Russ is the Executive Director of Enneagram Personality Types, Inc. and co-Founder of The Enneagram Institute. He is a Founder and former Vice-President of the IEA. He holds a degree in East Asian Studies from Columbia University in New York, from which he graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He lives in Manhattan and teaches in Europe, Japan, China, South Africa, South America, Australia and throughout the United States.
Don and Russ’contributions to the Enneagram are described in detail on their website in the article Enneagram Contributions. Convinced that the Enneagram would not be taken seriously without grounding in modern psychology, Don devoted himself to clearly and systematically describing the types and the elements of the system as a whole.
Don and Russ believe that the Enneagram is an invaluable tool for the growth of consciousness in human beings. When the personality types (and the system as a whole) are rightly understood, they help illuminate what is so often unconscious–and therefore hidden–in us. The Enneagram helps turn the light of awareness onto those features of our personality that operate automatically, not only keeping us`asleep,’but so often getting us into more trouble, more conflicts, and increasing our suffering and that of others. Given the awareness, as well as the willingness to work on ourselves, the Enneagram is one of the great tools available for alleviating human suffering. Through self-observation, we can come to a deeper level of self-awareness and self-realization. Through this process, transformation becomes not just an idea, but a reality. When enough individuals begin to change, the world will begin to change.
Don Richard Riso
2005 IEA Global Conference
San Francisco, California, USA