…that’s how it can feel to talk about the Enneagram if you’re non-religious. You may be very fond of the one piece of music, but your focus is always shifted because the other piece of music is constantly playing underneath. In this instance, it does so by expressions taken for granted (such as ‘holy’, ‘God’, ‘sacred’) , or by memes and posts that just imply that everybody agrees with the message.

The Enneagram of 2019 did not emerge from old Christian script, the figure itself may have some old roots, it may have some spiritual roots, but the Enneagram of personality of today is fundamentally a brilliant, multi-facetted tool that can give us all great insights – whether we believe anything or not.

To me – and other non-believers – every time we’re talking about the Enneagram and there’s that different piece of music playing at the same time, it’s difficult to know where the knowledge and the viewpoints are coming from. Is it from one piece of music or the other? If it’s the other, it’s about something else than the Enneagram and that distorts the message.

And why is that a problem, then? Well, it’s a problem if you’re using the Enneagram in for instance a business setting (because it’s a brilliant tool for personal awareness which leaders can benefit from) and people confuse it with something religious. Business and religion tend not to be a recommended mix and a lot of people in business are very astute at detecting hidden agendas. And so they back off. I know of business consultants who never tell their clients that they’re using the Enneagram because of this. Or they start using other tools – such as MBTI which is more “blue” if you will. So people start using more commercial tools because they’re not associated with religion or spirituality – and yet, underneath it all, it’s still great tool. It’s a great piece of music – you just can’t hear all of it because there’s another piece playing.

I’m not out to tell people what to do – that’s up to them. I just want to enjoy my one piece of music. Undisturbed.