The Three Centers of the Enneagram: Mental, Emotional, and Physical

Leslie Hershberger takes us on an illuminating tour through the three centers of the Enneagram — the heart center, the mind center, and the body center.

The Enneagram is a powerful portal into understanding yourself and others. It maps out the mental structure, the patterns of emotional energy and the distinct dynamics of 9 personality patterns.

The Enneagram transcends gender, religion, nationality and culture. Each of us is unique and we also share a common humanity. These patterns help us understand ourselves and others.

In the Enneagram, there are 3 centers or “domains”: HEAD, HEART AND BODY.

The HEAD is associated with the mental center. If our basic, mammalian security needs are not met, this is the center where we react with FEAR.

The HEART is associated with the emotional center. If our basic mammalian needs for connection and approval are not met, this is the center where we react with PANIC at the loss of connection.

The BODY is associated with the physical, kinesthetic or sensate feeling center. If our basic mammalian needs for control, power and fairness are not met, this center is where we react with ANGER which propels us to take action.

It’s fascinating because each of these three centers correspond with what we are learning in modern neuroscience through MRI’s, body scans and other technological advances.

Because these are core human, mammalian needs, we have all three of these centers available to us. We all feel fear, panic and anger. Yet, we tend to lead with one of these centers.

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