- A brief report on the origin of the Enneagram Draft from the U.S. bishops’ Secretariat for Doctrine and Pastoral Practices, archived at the Internet Archive
An examination of the origins of enneagram teaching reveals that it does not have credibility as an instrument of scientific psychology and that the philosophical and religious ideas of its creators are out of keeping with basic elements of Christian faith on several points. Consequently, the attempt to adapt the enneagram to Christianity as a tool for personal spiritual development shows little promise of providing substantial benefit to the Christian community.
The most obvious weakness of enneagram teaching is the numerology on which it depends. Enneagram teachers attach great significance to certain numbers, for example, the decimals resulting from the division of one by seven and by three. This numerological theory finds no support, however, in either the modern science of nature or Christian teaching. Because of this, for a Christian to subscribe to such numerology would be to fall into a form of superstition.
- Enneagram from The New Age: A Christian Critique by Ralph Rath
- The Enneagram GPS: Gnostic Path to Self by Marcia Montenegro, of Christian Answers for the New Age.
A simple investigation into the Enneagram reveals that its theories of personality are based on esoteric teachings and an occult worldview. The clear origin and purpose of the Enneagram is to initiate a Gnostic spiritual awakening to one’s alleged true divine Self, which is in itself an occult initiation. This is the claim and goal of virtually all occult and New Age teachings. The purpose of such initiation is a shift in consciousness, a change in the way one views reality — God, the world, others, and self.
- Enneagram versus the Catholic Church by Rick Kephart. Written from a Catholic perspective, but useful in that it highlights the fact that enneagram teachings use terminology that sounds biblical, but whose meaning is redefined.
- Gurdjieff and the Enigmatic Enneagram by the Anglican Renewal Ministries of Canada. The article “article emerged out of a footnote to a larger investigation into the relationship between Dr. Carl Jung, neo-gnosticism, and the MBTI.”
- Tell Me Who I Am, O Enneagram Fr. by Mitchell Pacwa, S.J., Christian Research Journal, Fall 1991, page 14. See also his book.
The enneagram is particularly popular among Catholic groups, with parishes and retreat houses offering workshops across the country. Rarely are teachers or participants aware of its occultic origins, something that should be a source of real concern for the Christian church. Echoes of a false, Gnostic theology are heard in enneagram teachings, though its occult roots are masked. The lack of scientific research into the enneagram system is an additional cause for concern. This article will examine these three aspects of the enneagram: its occultic roots, its Gnostic theology, and its lack of scientific support.
- Doug Pagitt Excited About Events Through The Lens Of The Enneagram by Ken Silva. Pagitt is one of the foremost leaders in the purportedly ‘leaderless’ Emerging Church — a movement that, for the most part, prefers experience over doctrine. Silva notes that Pagitt calls himself “a big fan of the Enneagram,” which given its occult roots doesn’t say much for Pagitt’s level of discernment.
- Catholics and the New Age: How Good People Are Being Drawn into Jungian Psychology, the Enneagram, and the Age of Aquarius by Mitch Pacwa, a Jesuit priest. See his article, Tell Me Who I Am, O Enneagram. In his book Fr. Pacwa probes the reasons why Catholics are dabbling in the New Age Movement. He shares his experiences and disillusionment with Jungian psychology, the enneagram and astrology. He aslo covers crystals and channelling. Two chapters are devoted to the Enneagram.
- A Closer Look at the Enneagram by Dorothy Garrity Ranaghan. Out of print booklet, but second-hand copies are usually available.
- The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Power of the Enneagram by Herb Pearce M. Ed. and Karen K. Brees. [Kindle edition | Buy a Kindle] Pearce, a Master of Education in Counseling, is an expert and certified teacher in the enneagram. The book is included here as a research resource; not an endorsement
- The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective by Richard Rohr. Color-coded brown because Rohr, a Franciscan Father, is more accurately described as a ‘Christian’ New Ager. While claiming to be a Christian, Rohr promotes Native American Spirituality, the Enneagram, Eckhart Tolle, feminist spirituality, and so on. Included for research purposes only; not an endorsement
Dictionaries / Encyclopedias
- Enneagram Entry at the Psychology Wiki. More informative and better documented than the Wikipedia entry on the same subject
- Enneagram Entry in the Skeptic’s Dictionary
- Enneagram of Personality Wikipedia entry.
- The Enneagram and the MBTI Research on how the Enneagram and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator relate
- Romancing the Enneagram by Don Richard Riso, who disputes claims of an ancient Sufi origin of the enneagram. The article is published on the website of The Enneagram Institute, a major promoter of the enneagram.
- The Enneagram Institute One of the foremost proponents of the use and value of the Enneagram. Included as a research resource; not an endorsement. It’s ‘about‘ page states:
The Enneagram Institute is dedicated to the Work of human liberation and transformation. For thousands of years, spiritual teachers from many different traditions have reminded us of the richness of the human spirit and its potentials. But without real self-knowledge, it is not possible to awaken to the deeper truths of the soul or to sustain whatever degree of realization we have attained. One of the most powerful tools for understanding ourselves and others is the Enneagram, an ancient symbol of unity and diversity, change and transformation.
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