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4w3 and Image – The World is a Stage

By | Erica Xenne | No Comments

The world is a stage upon which I can act out my inner drama. The way I see it, I was exiled from Erosia, and my life’s purpose is to embody its essence and channel it here on Earth.

I don’t have conscious awareness of eyes on me moment to moment – as I am focused on my own passion and desires, and honing the talents which allow me to channel them. Since I don’t actively think about others’ reactions, I never thought of myself as ‘self conscious’ until I realized I was a four, and then I saw that self-conscious “look” pervading all my photos… and felt sick.  This tells me the self-consciousness may be so pervasive and constant that I don’t even notice it.

What is conscious for me is channeling what lies within. Most people associate themselves with certain symbolism, passions or hobbies – but for me, there’s a deep dive into my internal world, and a need to wear it on my sleeve, to embody it. Throughout my life, I photograph myself, write poetic diary entries, and write songs to encapsulate my emotional journey.  When things are most dramatic – breakups, arguments, trauma – I feel the most pressing need to capture that suffering in art.  This process is cathartic and sacred: it helps me follow my deepest experience, discover who I really am, shape myself into an ideal, and ultimately, connect to others.

I don’t want people to remember me as ‘some random nice person’ – I want to be known as the embodiment of Erosia – my own creation. I want my inner world to be symbolized in my actions, outfits, and art; and ideally, I want others to find parts of themselves in it. They associate me with desire, passion…. and whatever else Erosia evokes for them. When this happens, I approach ‘Holy Origin’ – as it shows that, in some way, my audience and I are cut from the same cloth. My expression of origin resonates with their experience of their own.  In turn, I tend to bring the people I love into Erosia, and express my experience of them with symbols in my art.

I don’t do this in a calculated fashion: I don’t think “how do I want to affect others?” — instead I find a way to wear my inner world on my sleeve or mirror it in art.  Ideally, the expression would match the inside to the outside – and make it beautiful in some way, even if only in its rawness or brokenness.

When I lost my voice and could no longer sing & perform, I felt like my pipeline to others was cut off and my inner world could no longer be ‘heard,’ which made me worthless, nothing special, nobody. I’ve shared this poem from back then, many times…

am ii too jagged
or is the world too perfectly round?
sometimes ii feel like everyone else is lost
and ii, alone, am found.
but if a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it
does it make a sound?
that question is what keeps me
so tightly bound.

So, to translate – I’m fine with being different, fine with being ‘alien,’ I don’t get lonely or have some need to change myself for ‘them’ — I am found and they are lost. But I need them to hear me, to see me, to behold me. This need keeps me ‘bound’ to “them.” I need an audience or else there is no show.

Art is a lifestyle and a state of mind, but my work is not limited to expressions of ‘self.’  My magnum opus is a fantasy series in another galaxy- which has little to do with ‘me’ or my personal history.  The protagonist is nothing like me, and Erosia, as a planet, is not a major focus of this series, though it does tie in ultimately.  The art is not always directly about me; but I live as a vessel through which my passions and visions emerge.  I sacrifice everything for my art, and I see this as an expression of the lines to 1 and 2: I am a martyr.  The expression of my passions is my mission, and I live for something greater than myself.  I hope to tap into something timeless and eternal that will outlast my body, my feelings, or my tribe – something so deeply primal that it’s universal.  My art would ideally function as a mirror in which others can see themselves, stripped bare.

* Note about other 4s, from Roshan:
Tennessee Williams sp/sx 4w3 wrote deeply personal plays about people,
as a dramatic playwright, he was portraying other people.  Oscar Wilde as well.  Every 4 isn’t just evoking their own personal mythology, but they are expressing their personal experience and there will be a poetic expression somehow.  They express a very personal inner world but in different ways.  The personal is universal.  This is four ‘introjection.’

Tritype “Triple Attachment” – Basics.

By | Erica Xenne | No Comments

The “attachment types” are 3, 6 and 9 – so when these come together into a tritype, it makes the “triple attachment” tritype.

Here’s the basic breakdown:
You can see that the most basic, primal points of enneagram are 3, 6 and 9 – the ones that are connected by a triangle.
9 is the “central ” gut type, between the gut types 8 and 1.
6 is the “central” head type, between head types 5 and 7.
3 is the “central” heart type, between heart types 2 and 4.

9, 6 and 3 can all struggle with being “out of touch” with the center, but the classic explanation is kind of.. unrealistic. So, the classic explanation is that 9 is out of touch with anger (gut), 3 is out of touch with their shame (heart), and 6 is out of touch with inner mind, thus looking for an authority (head).

This explanation is “classic” but it has to be taken as a ‘dichotomy’ or a jumping off point. Humans are complex. So some 9s have anger and some don’t, but the anger tends to be misdirected. There’s a struggle to pin down the source of anger and aim it DIRECTLY at the problem. So people might not type at 9 because they’ll claim “I’m angry all the time.” “I feel my anger.” Etc. But they might be repressing anger at the REAL core of the issue, while having all this other anger floating around.

Likewise, each of these types are slippery in the core. 6 is out of touch with its inner authority, but is also the biggest SKEPTIC, refusing to believe input coming from others without first putting it through questioning filters. At other times, sixes will have ‘blind faith’ and just latch on to an apparent authority. Three can attach their sense of ‘value’ to accomplishments and certain other premises “out there’ that make people give them applause, like being hot, smart, or other things that appeal to a specific audience they want to attract; and thus lose sight of the shame (of having no worth) that is driving the whole thing; or they can be very aware of feeling worthless and fearing failure.

But either way, there’s something slippery there. For 9, as Robin has taught me, they can “know and not know.” At the same time. And this tritype can be like that.

Now, let’s look at the triangle.

3 integrates to 6, which integrates to 9, which integrates back to 3.
3 disintegrates to 9 which disintegrates to 6 which disintegrates back to 3.
So if someone is triple attached, all their fixes integrate and disintegrate into their other fixes, and they can get into a loop where you can’t tell which one is core.

 

– by Erica Xenne

Sx vs. Soc

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Common Misconception: Sx = Intimacy. 

Here, I posted an exchange I had today on a forum, addressing this.

Question:
Interesting. I’m a bit confused, though, especially about the last paragraph. What’s the difference between So and Sx again? There was a site that said that So is “personal connection” and Sx is “intimacy.” Sounds like the same thing to me. When you say that he enjoys merging with the fascinating qualities about you, that sounds like ‘connecting’ to me. Connecting and merging sounds like the same thing to me. So, if you wouldn’t mind, what’s the difference between So and Sx?

Anyway, you make some interesting points, and maybe this could explain why so many people type themselves as Sx (because they’re perhaps under the impression that Sx is one-on-one relationship, depth, romance, etc. and that So is group interactions and communities and so on). I guess I tend to be under this impression myself as well.

Answer:
Thanks for the interest and the thoughtful question.

Social is, at root: bonding, warmth, interpersonal intimacy, relationships, love between two people, friendship, having each other’s back. It is also the human need that lies behind the sentiment of loneliness. (Any instinct type can feel lonely.)

If you think about it, not all your close relationships are sexual. You might have a one-on-one intense bond with your brother or sister, or one of your parents, or perhaps your teacher or boss who is elderly when you’re a child; but none of these bonds (under typical healthy conditions) would be sexual. You can bond deeply with your sister without there having to be ‘sexual charge.’ So what would you call your intense, trusting, loving relationship bond with your sister? That would be social. And this extends to your friends.

Sexual is, at root: heat, allure, transformation, sexual intimacy eros. There’s a sense that you want to penetrate and be penetrated by the other person entirely, as though being absorbed into their being; tearing down all walls. (This is often mistaken for intimacy, but it isn’t necessarily, unless the Social instinct is also at play.) It is also the human need that lies behind obsession, limerence. (Any instinct type can experience this.) There’s an addictive quality to it, whether or not you’re actually intimate with the person.. you want them to want you.

In French, orgasm is called “la petite mort” – the little death. This is because when making love, you’re naked, exposed, without walls. You spill your life seed into, or upon, another. Fluids are mixed. Boundaries are lost, and when boundaries are lost, it’s impossible not to transform; to be reborn.

The reason sex has been deemed ‘sinful’ and bad is because it’s too destructive to society – it brings unexpected changes. People who were otherwise loyal to their family, or their job, or “the state” – will suddenly throw it all away for the sake of passion. Or that is what they fear. Sx instinct has a transformative quality.. it is there to strip you down, expose you and entice you, leaving you wide open. In this sense, Sexual Instinct has a danger to it. It can be scary, overwhelming.

Sx dominants are tuned into enticement, allure; they can’t turn it off. There’s a sense they’re always penetrating into you, using some type of luring siren signal, like the way birds show off their bright feathers and sing to impress a mate. All of that is sexual signaling and humans do it very similarly – through dressing up, showing virtuosity to entice (music, art etc).

Now this does not mean that “Sx dominants are sluts.” Quite the contrary, in many cases. The Sx dominant is so deeply attuned to chemistry that they can tell whose chemistry mixes best with theirs. When this instinct is first, it can be very selective, holding out for the hottest person, some kind of Ideal Other who would attract them and allure and entice them for all eternity.

This can, of course, develop into a sense of intimacy very quickly- since there’s an addictive quality, wanting to get deep into every part of the lover’s psyche. But this is a very different type of intimacy than that which you experience with your sister. The type with your sister will outlast most of your sexual relationships. The intimacy with your lover is more penetrating and intense, but it is not in and of itself based on common interests, trust, deep bonding and so forth; until Social instinct comes into play.

And we must remember that people are whole – we are not “just one instinct.” So an Sx/Sp and Sp/Sx couple will become bonded on a social level. Just as an So/Sp and Sp/So couple will enjoy heat and intensity, and want to allure each other. The question is, where does your attention automatically lie? What is the primary call of your instinctual senses? Which instinct is on all the time, in all situations, constantly guiding you, alternately holding you back and propelling you forward?

The Limits of Descriptions

By | Erica Xenne | No Comments

A type is a living breathing pattern that manifests through living breathing people. Once someone has years of experience with typology, the type starts to come to life. There’s more than words on a page; there’s a rhythm, a chemistry. This is what type really is. And once you understand that rhythmic essence of the types, then the descriptions become a ‘guide’ rather than scripture. Jung and Gurdjieff knew this – they were describing archetypes, not full people, and both were careful to explain that their systems (Cognitive Functions and Enneagram, respectively) were about a fundamental underlying gestalt which underlies the psyche of anyone that embodies that archetype.

If you can feel the types, and see them in motion in actual humans, it is clear that no description on its own is adequate. The various descriptions are maps and the people are the trees and the houses. The underlying gestalt of each archetype is clearly the same throughout each system, even if descriptions by different authors contradict each other – at least to my eye. Not everyone sees the world the way I do, but I certainly don’t gain much anymore from arguing about this description vs. that. It is a necessary stepping stone toward understanding what type is, but I don’t see how tit for tat cut-and-paste does anything to bring a type to life and make it breathe, so that a human may embody its essence. Once we get past that second-grade cut and paste, we graduate to the world of archetypes and rhythm of the world. Yacking about this definition vs that, is no longer relevant.

When you hear a piece of music, do you argue that someone else played the notes in a different syncopation? Fur Elise is Fur Elise, no matter who plays it. It can be to a rock beat, a jazz beat.. it’s still the same fundamental melody and chords. This is what makes it Fur Elise. You can argue that someone completely changed it, but if you heard that intro and you said “Fur Elise!” then your gut knew what song it was. This is the same for types.

Crown of the Enneagram

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People often mistype at 9, taking it literally. “My biggest fear is losing my loved ones, losing myself, losing my lifestyle.”  Sure.  That’s human.

9 is the crown of the enneagram because it deals with the central theme that enneagram exists in order to confront, which is that life is impermanent, and none of us know our true essence.  We have to build up defenses to survive in this world, as a necessity.  Those defenses form patterns, which can be understood as enneagram types.  Many claim enneagram is inborn and it is clearly observable in babies.  What this means is, the brain is programmed a certain way which lends itself to the emergence of a specific pattern.  The innate need for a survival pattern is essentially human, and that’s why everyone has an enneagram type.

So why do we have to “survive” through defenses?  Because people perceive themselves as separate entities, separated from one another.  People perceive “you against me” and “me vs. death.”  They see life as separate from death; thus, a fear of separation occurs.  You are separate from death, so how do you retain your life?  There’s a fear of impermanence and of the inevitability we all have to face: that one day, we will lose everything.

9s take this fear on at the deepest level: to combat this fear, they metaphorically resist being ‘born’ – leaving the womb creates separation. Unconsciously, they bury awareness of the most painful aspects of their personhood. Some 9s don’t hold tightly to anything, including their own ego. These are the well known “ephemeral 9s” – not quite “owning” their aggression, not owning their own self, going with the flow. This is their attempt to defend against impermanence and it can lend itself to ‘premature enlightenment.’ “I’m not combative, nor am I separate or different from you. I have a permeable ego. There is no ‘I.'” Other 9s may cling to something that makes them feel alive. It could manifest as an attachment to anger or melancholy, an obsession with a person, hyper-rumination or any other pattern – the key is ‘falling asleep to the self.’

This is the crown of the enneagram, as it is the purest manifestation of the defense against death, which reads to our mind as “impermanence and losing everything” since we see it as being separated from our life and our ego, rather than seeing ourselves as simply part of a grand cycle.  We need our ego in order to push ourselves to survive.  Without ego, why take care of our kid instead of every kid equally, regardless of the effects this has on our own offspring?  Life would fall apart without ego but, at the same time, it’s still a delusion. A necessary delusion. Since everyone believes it and lives by it, that, in a way, makes the ego very “real.”

So is it really a delusion? I don’t know. It’s more like a coping strategy that results from the reality of how the human mind works.

The other core types are additional defenses against losing yourself, impermanence, nothingness, dissolution.  Each type is a fixation on a different aspect of the human experience. We all have all these experiences and “sides” to us, which is why many of us can relate to many types, if not all, if we are honest with ourselves.  But each type gets fixated on a specific aspect of the experience of being human, thus forming a different core defense pattern.

Enneagram can’t be conceived of as a mere set of traits.  Motivations do not exist in a vacuum, and behavior should evidence the core motivation; but in order to spot a type, we need to understand what lies at its essence.  To truly grasp the meaning of enneagram, it has to be understood in terms of the egoic battle against impermanence.

“Why Can’t I find my Type?”

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The ego resists seeing its own defenses.  We need our defense strategies (enneagram) and biases (functions) for a reason. These strategies give the mind a pattern that it can learn to protect itself from chaos.  The defenses work on automatic, so uncovering the truth about them weakens them and leaves the ego bare, exposed, raw…

Over time, this discovery helps us to see ourselves, so that we may use our defenses but prevent them from using us.  But at first, exposing the truth about our automatic reactions and “inner settings” forces us to change. The ego resists changing because it is scared of exposure and chaos…rightfully so. Whether or not someone types correctly, it is only a strong soul that can digest the true meaning of its own type… and even then, the ego will continue defending itself by creating distortions around that idea, such as taking pride in your type, being ashamed, creating internal drama around it… all of which distracts from looking at the self objectively. Embracing the deep value of typology, on an egoic level, is a lifelong journey.