The Sacred Art of Living Center strongly endorses the study of the Enneagram as a tool for self awareness and spiritual development. Mary and Richard Groves have been students and teachers of the Enneagram tradition for more than thirty years. The Enneagram is much more than a personality typology; it is a sacred psychology with ancient roots in many spiritual traditions. Anyone interested in learning more about the Enneagram is welcome to participate in one of the many seminars and retreats offered through Sacred Art of Living Center. While there are many schools of Enneagram study, SALC instructors focus on the spirituality of the Enneagram. We especially honor our Enneagram mentors, who have helped to form SALC’s perspective on the Enneagram among whom are Richard Rohr, Helen Palmer and Riso-Hudson.
Who am I?
Who are you?
Why are we here?
Does my life have purpose and meaning?
Althought we never get complete answers, the human spirit wants to know. “Who is this person I call Me?,” “Why do you feel, think, and do things differently than I?,” and “Where do I fit into the bigger picture of life?”
The fields of philosophy, psychology and spirituality all attempt to provide answers to life’s biggest questions. The ‘why’ questions of philosophy move us into never-ending search for meaning. Psychology helps us understand human nature and the stages of human growth. Our spirituality attempts to describe Mystery and relationship to all life. The Enneagram, pronounced “Any-a-gram” (ennea = the greek word for “9”, gramma = types), is an extraordinary theory that brings these three quests together.
The Enneagram is an ancient tradition that may be more than 3,000 years old. For centuries, many Christians, Jews and Muslims have found this tool to be most helpful in “the art of spiritual discernment”–deepening their understanding of both psychology and faith. When Enneagram theory is applied to human nature, it suggests that there are nine archetypal vantage points from which human beings view their reality. Our motivations, feelings, and choices of action flow from a particular view point on life. The Enneagram is not, of course, the ultimate truth. Rather, it provides a marvelous framework that helps us understand how each person is “one of the nine faces of God.”
The staff at the Sacred Art of Living Center have a combined experience of more than 50 years applying the Enneagram in the context of spiritual direction and as a means of developing a more unified spiritual life.
A brief description of the
nine portraits of the soul
“Perfectionists” are realistic, conscientious and principled; they strive to live up to their high ideals.
“Helpers” are warm, concerned and nurturing. They are sensitive to other people’s needs.
“Achievers” are energetic, optimistic, self-assured and goal oriented.
“Romantics” have deep, sensitive natures and are warm and perceptive.
“Observers” have a need for knowledge and are introverted, curious, analytical and insightful.
“Questioners” are responsible, trustworthy and value loyalty. Their personalities range from reserved and timid to outspoken and assertive.
“Adventurers” are energetic, lively and “want it all.” They contribute much to life.
“Asserters” are direct, self-reliant, self-confident and protective.
“Peacemakers” are receptive, good-natured and supportive. They seek union with others and the world around them.