Whenever we identify with our idealized self-image (I), we tend to dis-identify with our opposite attributes (not-I). For example, if we think of ourselves as being extraordinary and refined, then we don’t want to be thought of as being common and rude. Who would, really? To avoid these unacceptable parts of ourselves, we put them in the basement (our unconscious) where we can ignore them. This approach uses the defenses of repression and splitting. We can also throw out our garbage. This involves the mechanisms of projection and projective identification.
When we generate this inner split and become divided against ourselves, we also create divisions with others. For example if we think of ourselves as wise and perceptive and then cast out our inner idiot, we find ourselves surrounded by a “confederacy of dunces.”
By re-owning our disavowed parts and integrating our inner polarities, we re-establish an inner wholeness with an expanded sense of self, increased energy, and more compassionate connections with others.
Through illustrations, dialogue, and individual and group exercises we will identify each Enneagram style’s persona, shadow, defenses, and potential paths to integration.
For information on Jerry Wagner see page 32.
2007 IEA Global Conference
Redwood City, California, USA