Growing up through the enneagram (UL/LL)


I wanted ask I how can I grow more fully using the enneagram as a model ? I am an enneagram type 4 with a 5 strong wing. Especially, when moving towards my growth type meaning moving from 4 to 1 or from 5 to 8. How can I identifiy that I am moving towards and embodying growth ? Do I become more like my growth type and how can I recognize that I am becoming more of an 8 ?

Also, how can I grow my wing more, I understand that I move from 5 to 8 as well as from 4 to 1, yet how can I recognize that I am more inside my wing ?

Generally, I notice that I can see my growth of my wing when I work on a couple of projects and start to become very focused and clear and have this “tunnel vision” of diving deeper into the subject. As a main type 4 I notice that I am growing when I am able to establish consistency and work more disciplined without needing to be in the right mood. Also, I notice that I suddenly have gazillion ideas of how I can approach a problem etc. When I work for a couple of hours.

When dealing with others I notice that I constantly feel. I have to take the role as a 4 to empathize with others viewpoints and provide idealistic solutions and propositions, mostly I feel when I do that, that I feel left out when there is no ressonance and at one point feel burnt out.

Also, is it true for others also that for 4’s that the heart chakra / anahatta chakra is blocked ? From meditating / reading and doing some yoga, I noticed that I have this blockage at the sternum, are there any other blockages for other types that are somewhat common ? I presumed that this blockage was at around the third chakra, yet now I notice that I just did not have a proper map. From doing exercise I can pinpoint that it is more of a heart chakra problem.

Now, are the only dual types ? When I take the test online from the RHETI organisation, they have a description of 4/5 as the so called Bohemian, not knowing the enneagram model all to well, I was wondering why they defined 3 types as sort of the three types that exist. Is there also a second wing ? Meaning 4/5/7 would be my tri-type. Yet, from doing a quick online search I mostly see people using only one wing, so 4/5.

I can see and understand that using the inner oberserve and applying mindfulness is great to loosen up the patterns and create a deeper emobodyiment of the characterstics of any enneagram.

I wanted to ask other people for their experience, especially if they have interacted with 4’s in the two courses 4’s from Helen Palmer - "Patterns of relating / Patterns of being ", 4’s IIRC had the least amount of content. So, I wanted to ask the integral community how interacting with 4’s is alike and how does it feel like moving towards emobdying 1.

How does it feel embodying your wing, so moving from e.g enneagram type 2 to 4.

Especially, for the people of took part in the live events, what did you learn ? I unfortunately was not able to attend most of them, because of personal issues, and I was unsure how to deal with all of my personal stuff.

Hi @once3800

Skip over if I’m out of context, but my family and I have done quite a bit of Enneagram work outside of the Integral framework.
Our biggest take aways, the gold if you will, were:
We all are built a bit differently and therefor receive and give communication in different styles. And these styles are dynamic (wings) based on mood and stress levels.
This may seem very basic, but what I came away with is to relax about the communications and honor our differences. Basically it’s like yogi for flexibilty in communictions and with your own shadows.
For me, I felt the “tags” while good examples of differences, can also be used by our shadows to compartmentalize others. Worst scenario in the world is “whatever, that’s just your Z wing talking”.
Again, this may be too far outside the integral version so may not be relevant.


Yes, this is what I feel also and what I have done wrong in the past to constantly compartimentalize others to a certain type and/or stage. I feel that this was correct often times, because I was very pushy and wanted to grow as a person. I certainly have learned my lesson here, because I lost a friend.

I see that we are all built differently and honoring differences can be quite overwhelming, I also enjoy that the Ennegram has a shadow component, in the courses they explained how knowing about the Enneagram is good for avoiding spiritual bypassing.

What I would be more curious about is how do you interact with others types for e.g at work or with your family how has the Enneagram helped you there and others ?

What differences are the most diffcult to overcome and how did the Enneagram help you there ?

How did you grow personally for instance in your relationships and or at work ?

I am currently working/studying from home, so I do not have a lot of reference material, because I am alone most of the time, also talking about the Enneagram can take hours lol.

Hi @once3800
I’ve had the benefit of going through several multiple personality and communications model programs, such as Enneagram, Meyers-Briggs, DISC, and a couple that frankly all start to seem the same. I have not been through the Integral Enneagram course so cannot comment directly.
In my experience, going solo or online would be extremely difficult to get most benefit. Ideally I think best going through with a group you interact with daily - work group, family, organization, …

We hear a lot about “being heard” and I do think that all of these models (remember, they are models NOT the real world :slight_smile:) do help us communicate more deeply, more effectively, more quickly, more naturally, more compassionately, and even more compassionately with ourselves.

I have it that becoming a better communicator enables us to help both ourselves and others to overcome barriers in language. And these barriers are down to individual definitions of words and cliches that can create traps for us internally. Most obvious would be labels like “those XYZ’s”, “you are an ABC”, and the multitude of hyper-charged clichés. But much more subtle would be common language or even how we each put thought structures together.
The goal, as I see it, is to “free ourselves” if you will from our “default ways of being” (ruts, mental traps,…) so we can have the optimal communication and connectivity with others. As an example with your family, you want to have the best possible communication but it still doesn’t change the fact that you want your daughter to do her homework, co-worker provide what you need to do your job, or boss to give you that raise. We can develop the skills, facility, compassion which then will enable us to better communicate what we want, but still does not guarantee the outcome.

The enneagram (in my non-scholarly estimation) tends to get a little complicated with all the numbers and wings and then combinations of such. Or perhaps I just wasn’t able in live-time keep up with the bits and pieces and combinations. But what I did get is that, as an example, when stressed (shadows, triggered, etc) I tend to get extremely analytical (Wing X). Depending on who I’m communicating with, that may be the least effective mode to be in. So in Enneagram terms that might mean something like, “my 5 wing, fights with their 6 wing” or something like this. So for me, it’s all about self-compassion and compassion. (I am my hardest critic by far…).

Great specific question. For me my career has been in a field/fields where you simply can’t get into it them without being fairly high on the IQ scale. In the work setting this means almost everyone has lived a life where they were usually the smartest or one of the very “smartest in the room”. It can create an intellectually competitive environment in the work place as well as with outside suppliers, partners and customers. Softening or relaxing this even a bit can humanize much of interactions and lead to significantly better relationships. At least this is a benefit I’ve seen.

The biggest benefit though has been “in the real world”. I used to think “what an idiot” quite a lot when interacting with people. Part of this, for me, was a collection of MY shadows that I soaked up like a sponge growing up. Being the smart kid, smart brother, smart friend, or oft times the smartass guy wasn’t always much fun particularly when my “wing” crossed their wrong “wing”. This actually just made things worse.

I think I’ve just talked around the Enneagram model and added in IQ surface to even further complicate things. Sorry about the “off the path” wanderings. LOL.

For me I would say significant improvement surfing with the masculine/feminine communication styles differences as being one of the very best up levelings for me. As mentioned, it is/was MY shadows that I am out to resolved so I can communicate as very best as possible, so by reducing how often or to what depth these grip me it makes communications significantly better, as well as relationships much much better. The beauty (and curse) are that relationships are very non-linear in my experience particularly for male-female relationships. If the masculine-feminine relationships are something you are interested in, I highly recommend David Dieda’s “Way of the Superior Man”.

Again, sorry if I’m wandering off into something irrelevant for you, but perhaps these is something there as well. We actually don’t know without have the discussions. :slight_smile:

Since you’re working/studying from home, I would recommend the Dieda book. I find it written such that it’s very easy to internalize by myself and very easy to read.
Enneagram for me is complex enough that I would want to go through with a guide/teacher and the group/family/partner I’m focusing on at the moment.

Thank you for the joyful discussion. You are having me refresh some great learnings in the past, perhaps even put some disparate pieces together (for me). Have a blessed week!


I can relate to most of what you write to a significant degree. As far as I understand it mostly softens relationships and shadow dynamics of people at the workplace. Knowing the Enneagram can help to soften communication by being aware of other people’s types and tendencies. Yes, I agree doing all of this solo is like going against the grain of other people’s worldview. At the sametime becoming aware of these tendencies,characteristics such as for instance gluttony and constancy of a typ X. Certainly helps to deal and predict how a person will behave in a given scenario.

What I can extract as so often is the case is that non-judgemental awarness and mindfulness of the situation at hand, is the best way to resolve conflict without consorting in power dynamics of toxic people for to long. I also looked into the Meyers-Briggs and IIRC I did a DISC test from a website and had a high tendency for analytical thinking etc.

I agree deactivating the default area network certainly is optimal, to stop feeling stuck in constant trap of self-awarness and identification with ego patterns. I certainly still have a lot to learn in this area.

I noticed a similar pattern, also for understanding the Enneagram knowing how my stressor works is highly beneficial and I can look out for how the stressor type behaves. Meaning when I get stressed as a 4 and move towards my stressor pattern which is type 2, I can see how type 2 functions on average levels, to become aware again: “Oh this is my type 2 becoming active” and move towards a healthy vertical growth of my type.

I am still unsure how wings fully work I checked Wikipedia for a description of a Bohemian and was suprised somehow how accurate the description is. I then simply had the idea I can look up all of the famous celebrities etc. Read about them and ingegrate my understanding of the Enneagram as well as of how each type is manifested in combination for e.g Ghandi is a type 1, Pjotr Tschaikowski ( a composer / w/e) is a type 4. What I am curious about is how the Enneagram is connected to neuroscience in a bit more depth, the MBTI meanwhile also has evidence for neuroscience. Yet, after doing the two courses I somehow became aware how sort of Orange/green or Green/Orange the model itself is. It wants you to feel special and unique and only to relate to others by one type, one personality type. Instead of seeing the combinations etc. The functions of MBTI for e.g TI NE NI TE etc. is the only thing valueable to me, also the neuroscientific evidence they found was interesting for each type. Yet, I am unsure how scientifically valid all of this information is.

This is interesting I’ve worked together with people for e.g as in an internship at a renowned research institute one of my closer friends, also works as a researcher and interacting with people who have a high IQ, certainly is interesting, yet I notice the dogmatic side and or expert bias. For e.g my friend who is a researcher helped me for a project, he gave me the most complicated solution and I told him even if I had 0 expertise in the subject that this is wrong and way to complicated and I gave him an idea for the solution after 30 mins, he looked quite baffled at me, as to how did I knew that his was correct, yet was unable to implement it. I sometimes wonder too. If I would have noticed that he is type X for instance it would be more clear to me, he was caring to much about the situation that occured.

Also, to go off topic my psychologist asked me if I was gifted as well as other people asked me suddenly how high my IQ is, so I sort of can relate because I have highly intelligent friends as well as lived with highly intelligent human beings together. Which was certainly more fun and entertaining for me, because I certainly notice my type 4 tendencies to kick in and negatively compare myself to others. So, I am unsure how to deal with this personally it makes me happy and sad at the sametime, because of the time lost and negative experiences I had with my country, because of it’s fragmented system.

I’ve listend to the audiobook very often and took notes and dove a bit deeper into the topic of sexuality. At the weekend I looked up a couple of concepts where I realized that I completely misunderstood what was being talked about because I do not fully understand, yet how the dyadic system of yin and yang work. I always thought yang = masculine / white / active as well as yang = feminine / black / passive work. IIRC in the book he talks about how the masculine energy is active and moving and receives it’s depth from sitting still and doing for e.g 1h meditations to get closer to one’s higher purpose, calling and life purpose. Also understanding how feminine energy or yin energy is passive and wants to feel full somewhat makes more sense because … it is an “dyadic system” and from looking at the symbol yin… moves to yang and yang to ying. Explaining the polarity between the two energies of feminine and masculine. I listend to an audiobook which explained this as a system, yet I became bored because it was somehow to intuitive.

To summarize what I wrote first of all I never looked at the Enneagram through the lense of masculine and feminine polarity and having these non-linear experience of feminine and masculine, certainly makes me think sometimes that awarness alone is curative. Yet, I notice how understanding the specifics of a model is key to understand the whole. Or simply to have a more inductive view of things because my culture favours a deductive view, which is a travesity as well as an atrocity sometimes.

Thank you for your feedback ! This stuff certainly is not easy to digest and implement in a couple of weeks, also I am definitely looking forward to attending on of the Enneagram seminars they certainly looked fun.

I also looked on their website how these wings work in the UR quadrant and mostly it depends on the person if the second wing is also active, as far as I can tell from reading the free content from the RHETI organisation. Also, the more integrated a person is the more the person draws upon the whole spectrum of the Ennegram. Yet, still going through the course what I liked most is that through the lense of the Enneagram everyone seemed to have superpower and it was somewhat unfortunate that they mostly talked about the downsides and less about the upside of each type and how to integrate that. Yet, again this would be for e.g what my type is good at as a 4 I am good at “Best in what’s missing, worst of what is here”, which is a very odd “superpower” to have lol.

Ideally, this was insightful to you too ! Thank you for saying that it was a joyful discussion, it is hard enough to type all of this in english for me lmao.


That’s about it. :slight_smile:
If we can keep from getting triggered or more subtly have ego-judgement running on others, it enables us to make discerning or “wise” decisions. You can choose to not engage with someone that cannot step outside power machinations, or perhaps you do need to engage but limit engagement to “what needs to be done”. You’re example with the researcher friend is a great example. Perhaps they want to dominate you or have themselves be validated, by you adopting their approach. And perhaps you bring this out in them (?). And maybe it just doesn’t matter either way. It’s ok for each of us to give ourselves the freedom to NOT introspect every interaction in every relationship with each and every person. That alone might be the biggest breakthrough. LOL

Orange/Green structures - the models are a product of our times. 10,000 years ago, the Shaman would have very different discussions with us. :slight_smile: I think most of our “self help” models trickle down from academic research. Perhaps we will see more mature models (or we develop them) coming out. Perhaps the Integral Enneagram is a a higher level representation of the Enneagram model from 20 years ago?

I think that when we get into arch types (Ghandi, Tschaikowski, Superman, …) it’s to enable the many many layers and areas of our human psyche that we either don’t current or really don’t need to understand. Stir the internal fires and humans can accomplish amazing things.

My understanding is that our most obvious shadows and triggers come out the Amygdala (most Egoic?). If we can avoid Amygdala Hijack we get a long way down the enlightenment path. We still have our neural pathways looking for confirmation bias of our thoughts, beliefs and what we know. You might have a deeper knowledge or thoughts on our psycho-physiology.

In a compassionate sense, it’s very easy for all of us to get “lost in the forest for all the trees”. Your friend may have been preoccupied with his own personal research. As Maslow (I looked it up, had no idea it was Maslow) said “I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.”
And I also agree that usually the simplest solution is usually the most likely (Occam, 1300’s) is the most likely.

David Dieda - You’ve read quite a lot :slight_smile: This is predominately a US site with mostly US folks. Sadly I think the US Integral community’s strong uptake of Intersectionality views essentially makes taboo most physiological-based correlation of masculine and feminine. I find this unusual (or just don’t understand) that much of Wilber’s foundational work (Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality) clearly incorporated gender and physiology.

Haha! Absolutely enlightening for me as well. Should we look at creating a mash-up of Personality Testing (MBTI - primarily static?), Communications frameworks (Enneagram - primarily dynamic “how to”?), masculine/feminine (Physiological, “how to”?)?

For now I presume this was because of him moving towards his stressor. His shadow and/or stressor and/or subconscious belief was that he is a good guy who is helping. I am pretty sure that he would type as 5 ultimately I do not know. Nor that I claim that I know. Yes, I definitely have this tendency activating my type 5 pattern. Definitely helps me to detach from a situation, yet being a 4w5 is not easy in the sense that both types are withdrawn and sort of distance themselves from a situation. For instance when meeting new people I can make friends easily moving towards 1 and 8, yet when I am on an average level I am so introverted… I step back and analyize everything in detail, only to go home and beat myself up because of how I interacted with people and how I felt about people. Detachment which is a key ability of my wing is great, because I harbour so much energy that I google for 2-3h what went wrong, how can I improve the situation etc.

At best reading this and detaching would be ideal. For the situation with my friend the key insight was he is quite integrated and also had experience with mindfulness (6 month retreat at a temple because it is a tradition of his culture). He seldom opens up around others, yet from my experience I know my intuition about stuff is usually 90% accurate. Or I create a self-fullfilling prophecy somehow. He was definitely angry because he loves helping, yet was overwhelmed by the “stupidity” of the programming language as well as doing his research. Anyway we finished this in 3 days … it was an atrocity. In retrospect I was to demanding in that situation. Still it was the correct course of action, because I was right. So, knowing for e.g that his was my wing moving towards growth now gives me more leverage in working with the enneagram and interpersonal growth. Of course I can also make all of this up, I just learned about this from 2 courses and 3 pdf files.

Yes, I am kind off addicted to introspection because I love understanding other people I don’t know why it somehow makes me feel validated that I am not a bunghole.

Yes, I looked up the origin of the Enneagram and the teacher and saw some interconnections, Wikipedia is a weird website. I definitely agree it is a more mature model simply because science and relationships can add a lot. I definitely want to look and buy the book about neuroscience and the enneagram. To see the patterns more active and noticing how in our top-heavy society, we are prone to even neglect the foundamentals of how our brain works and interacts with others. I don’t know I find it weird that I never learned anything about this in school, although it is all over the internet.

Definitely, agree with archetypes, yet at one point I do feel that spiritual bypassing can kick-in and knowing about “archetypes”/“first form” on a gross level is definitely heplful in stiring the fire inside oneself or enlivening others.

Certainly, I do not have deeper knowledge about this subject I certainly do not have technical knowledge of how the brain works etc in the UR till it tetra-interacts. I’ve finished reading a book about trauma “The body keeps the score” and how the fight-flight mechanism works etc. With some nice diagramms how how a brain scan of a person who experienced a serious car-accident looks. For e.g how depersonalization looks, how the thalamus plays a role, what the hippocampus does also and the whole process of how they interact. I do not know the details besides that the thalamus or a part of the thalamus is responsible for self-storytelling. Constantly rescripting and reconditioning ourselves knowing that there is a part of my brain that does that is kinda cool. So, definitely shadow also would come from the thalamus when looking at only UR till it tetra-interacts. The book is definitely a good read.

Quite funny, I feel that it is the reverse in the EU people especially younger people from the zoomer generation seem to care more about intersectionality then my Gen Y generation. My generation including me somewhat dismisses the topic and is more concerned with health and well-being. Sort of “Yuppy” activites. Yes, I find it difficult to find a simple solution that works for most things, sometimes people build sky castels of complexity in case that makes sense lmao.

I did not read sex,ecology and spirituality yet. Everytime I read a Wilber book I go out and proselytize for about 3-4 months till I notice oh I’ve done it again. Then after a year or so I notice wow they actually listend to some of this stuff I told them. I definitely want to read this book then. I find politics sometimes quite regressive nowadays and to much competitiveness and rigid belief structures.

Haha that certainly sounds interesting, yet also like another mastery process :slight_smile: . I am happy about the interpersonal exchange and knowing that other people are interested in the subject. Definitely gives me a desire to read more about the Enneagram and Wilber’s work !

Good morning @once3800

I might elbow my way to run on the goal, score a goal with much celebration, but then later in the game or even a later match get “taken out” by even my own teammate. Everyone has need for respect, admiration, validation, even when they aren’t very good at giving these away themselves. It’s a dilemma?

Very interesting. Our Thalamus sounds like our internal DL engine, and perhaps the hippocampus. I’ll have to look into this a bit. Did you have any recommended readings on this? Will also let you know what I dig up. Or perhaps I need to find my SES copy :slight_smile:

Now that you have exsposure, are you not going to master the subject(s)? Or will you move on to another hobby to work really hard at?

Peace and blessings

Unfotunately not I just orderd a book about nutrition and one about the enneagram. I am going to order SES after I finished one taste. Wilbers story is way to deep to follow any of it lmao. What is a DL engine ? I only once saw a book in a bookstore that was interesting. Would love to recommend, yet it was in a bookstore in england.

Yes, certainly being selfish can be a positive trait when applied to others needs.

Certainly working on my vision first and foremost. I will associate interests that I have and connect the dots. This is just to get out of a rut and to work in relationships on my own and to have material that I can draw back upon. I certainly do a lot, yet the more I know the faster I can read etc. I am mostly working on practical skills and on attaining success now, retraining my mind and basically mastering stage orange strategical thinking as well as other stuff. So, I am planning re-planning entering a dynamic phase again and again. Mostly I want to have a stable enough life to work on spirituality and moving towards higher structure stages. Since, this has been one of the most fun activites that I’ve done.

I will certainly “master” the enneagram over a lifetime. This will take 10-15 years, because it is a quadrant 2 activity. In case you are familiar with the Eisenhower Matrix.

Bless you too. Have a great week !

In AI, neural network training usually handled separately (DL/Deep Learning or ML/Machine learning) from Inferencing. Sounds like the thalamus and/or hippocampus would be analogous “blocks”.
Circling back to the Amygdala Hijack concept (I was acquainted through Goleman’s “Emotional Intelligence” - easy and excellent read), I would think likely that any “learning” through the thalamus and/or hippocampus regions would be significantly impaired once triggered.

Oh, then I sort of can relate my friend (who helped me with the project) does research inside the DL area. He explained some mathematical concepts and my head basically exploded, yet it sounded very fun. Also, works at a very good institute in Germany.

Yes, I want to read that book too, yet currently doing courses and sticking to my reading list :smile:.

Thanks for the fun conversation. I am out of this thread for now !

Thank you for your detailed discussion. I am learning and growing.

Just a note to say, Ken’s model differentiates between sex (UR), gender (LL), orientation and identity (UL), and gender roles (LR). He absolutely does not say “gender = sex”. Which is why you can, say, be born a male or female in the UR, feel a heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual, etc. orientation in the UL, any combination of masculine and feminine qualities in the UL, a preference for “men’s” or “women’s” gender in the LL, and any number of socially-constructed (and yes, biologically-constructed, at least for a period of our history) in the LR.

The integral model allows for more degrees of freedom in our personal expressions of sexual, gender, orientation, polarities, and roles. It does not over-privilege a single quadrant like previous stages do (amber privileges LL/LR beliefs about gender categories and roles, orange privilege UR characteristics, green privileges UL identities and LL gender expressions. Only integral synthesizes all of these simultaneously, and allows people to be whoever they want to be, while also encouraging them to be more than they currently are by plugging their sense of “identity” into a much larger spectrum that runs all the way up to self-transcendence, integration, and enlightenment, often called the “supreme identity”.)

1 Like