RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PEOPLE
—LOOKED AT FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF THEIR FIXATIONS
This is based on elements reported to me; it goes into an invented Case Study freely elaborated with amendments by the willing reporter.
A whole big study is waiting to be done so as to draw up the ramifications of Fixation-relatedness. Nothing cut and dried could ever be produced because there are so many variables but perhaps the main outlines can be discovered by diligent discussion…
There are at least 81 starting points not counting DOI TF – DS and DTA. Millions of variables…
The practical implications would be enormous: if you find yourself with a person who has the same Fixation as you how do things work out between you as you both travel the whole scope of that Fixation, TF to DS? Neither party would ever be in exactly the same place as the other in spite of their sharing the same Fixation; if a key member of your team has a different Fixation from you what are the similarities and differences that make for a better working relationship. What is the role of the Wings?
Example 1: A Person Fixated at 9 meets one Fixated at 1—from the 9’s point of view…
When I’m in TF9, I experience a state of connectedness which I believe to be my most effective way of being in the world. The world is working in harmony as am I and other people are drawn to me because they’d like a bit of what they observe I have.
I know that my Wings (first TF1 & then TF8) help me to maintain this state and provide energy to help me take advantage of being in TF9 and add detailed focus to follow through on my goals at TF1
I can usually maintain balance because I have a very sound vision of how I think things ought to be (TF1) and I am fully able to lead my self through all life’s little upsets so that I simply acknowledge them and deal with them in a resourceful kind of way; I don’t know how but I am aware that I can be inspiring to those who are drawn to me (both characteristics of TF8).
However, in certain circumstances, things from deep inside me bubble up: just last week I had a client who in SS1 had an overwhelming need to establish his sense of order and his kind of control in our project planning session. He had a know-it-all approach to things, shutting out my ideas to help and became quite aggressive as I suggested what I thought were creative possibilities to make the project even more successful. This seemed to pose a threat to his own sense of self worth.
I lost track of my self and began to identify with his mood; I allowed my self to slip down into DS1 responses, insisting (mildly anyway) on what I thought he ought to do, becoming angry & inflexible inside (I expect he caught my mood too…). When we’re really honest with ourselves we surely have to admit to slippage of this kind!
Then the DS of my other Wing (8) came out to play—a refusal to back down, failing to listen for understanding… knowing all the time, helplessly, that this was contrary to how I am in TF9.
I remembered just in time that Gurdjieff advised us to listen very carefully to what we say about others in order to notice how it applies to ourselves. How could I possibly know about his controlling behaviour if I did not have it in me somewhere? His behaviour—it was like holding up a mirror to my own worst performances. I thought he was dominating, crushing my well-meaning creative suggestions, wanting to have his own way, knowing what was good for him better than I did , unwilling to meet me half-way. So what does all that say about me?
Just Who is it that’s Unwilling to Meet Half-way?
How to retrieve the situation? A brief excursion to TF3 (my DOI) was called for—it helped me rise above things just in time; just in time, I disidentified, put a conceptual gap between my self and the client, realising that the way I was describing him to myself was a pretty accurate description of how I can be when I stray from being in TF9. “Bugger!” I thought and changed tack.
I took control of my self and decided that to turn the situation around I must slow myself right down and go into ‘External Considering’—look at things as they really are rather than how I construct them or want them to be. This also brought into view the client as he really was and not my imaginings about him. I was now in Meta-I from where objectivity is possible.
Since at TF9 I can be in touch with who I really am; respecting my self, I could become more able to respect his position. He seemed to sense my withdrawal into a safe spirit place so that, without doing anything, I was able to pace him into a different frame of mind. I was now being true to TF9 and giving him plenty of space for personal exploration. I had backed off.
Haltingly at first, he began to open himself to what he described as the ‘real issues’. My backing off seemed to give him permission to open himself up in a way that he couldn’t do when he felt out of control earlier on.
Later, after a successful session, I recalled that what is described somewhere as our ‘Soul Child’ [in Sandra Maitri] is to be found in the DS of our DOI—DS3 in my case. The Soul Child is unresolved conflict from the past—things from childhood that we haven’t faced up to—things that can bubble up from time to time when our defences are down. I looked up the characteristics of DS3: ‘determined not to be a loser’, lacking power unless people give it to them by succumbing’, making others feel anxious, in conflict’, ‘over-drive of self-promotion’.
And I imagined I’d left all that behind me!
- First be very clear what you consider it to be like to be in your main fixation on TF
- Figure out how your Wings @ TF support and help to maintain your functioning in TF main…
- Your partner or close work colleague may be fixated in the same way as you; they may not be!
- How does this help or hinder the relationship?
- Consider what happens when you are both anywhere between TF & DS
- How do you relate in terms of your Wings?
- In the event of some kind of screw-up think about what’s made you lose your self in identification with something about the other…
- What’s the strategy for getting back to being in the TF of your main fixation?
- How can it help to explore the DOI?
- Check all this out with your partner or close work colleague if that’s possible or likely to be helpful…
One thought on “ENNEAGRAM §15”
Colin, I enjoyed your write-up of the interrelationship between the fixations and the wings. A workshop of this sort is mind-boggling. The participants would probably have to be somewhat experienced (maybe not) and the projects for the workshop would have to be arranged. Although maybe the different fixations within a group setting could create their own projects. It seems that the learning that would take place would be well worth it. How sticky it would probably get in the beginning, evolving into one hell of a dynamic workshop. Now that I think about it experience with the enneagram would be a good idea:-)
The other day I was watching PBS. The show was about Dark Energy, and the theory was that the universe is two dimensional, and what we perceive is bits of images and information projected out by Dark Energy. So the idea is that Space is filled with with infinite bits of things that create a universal hologram. Colin and Patrick are merely constructs of information that is being projected out into view. Something like that but it was mind boggling. The subconscious is what then? Dark Energy? I thought of the enneagram drawn out on the ground. Then when we step into it and begin an exercise, we are in some ways collapsing ourselves into an intelligence that is unknown, Greater then ourselves. We collapse our ego constructs, the unknown intelligence (Dark Energy) pours forth a fountain of Colin’s or Patrick’s beforehand unknown reality, a hologram of information. So when we forget and are asleep (most of the time) we are dreaming in 3 dimensional space, but… If we were to speed up our mind’s eye by actually slowing down our internal clocks(movement centres) Meta I we would feel the dizzy bits flowing energy creating energy energy destroying energy in one fell swoop Quantum we would be breathing under water? space to walk from one side of your yard to another would be like moving through billions and billions of waves. It could take a lifetime. romantically zen(4) and delirious (5) Best Wishes Patrick