Tritype with Instinctual Stackings

In answer to questions asked regarding  the intersection of the instinct type stacking with the Enneagram Tritypes.

Guy, you make some good points. I am frequently asked about the history of the Enneagram since I have studied with all of the original teachers including Naranjo and Ichazo in one form or another and certified with three schools of thought.

Enneagram differences in the descriptions of the Enneagram and the instinctual subtypes can be explained when you know the origins and the subsequent dissemination of the Enneagram.

Knowing the correct history of the Enneagram is important as it explains why certain areas of the Enneagram developed in different ways.

I studied with Naranjo in 1996, which was the first time he taught the Enneagram in its entirety in the US. Naranjo’s earlier teachings were to his Spiritual groups SAT (Seekers After Truth) groups from 1971-1973. It was great because he was open to answering all of our questions… such as who did what and when. It cleared up a lot of errors and misunderstandings in the original dissemination of the Enneagram. He also clarified what Ichazo taught him and what he contributed separately from Ichazo.

Later, I lived for a year on Maui, the land of Ichazo, and was able to attend Ichazo’s Intensive as well as become friends with Ichazo’s spiritual school trainers that taught his 40-day trainings. Naranjo left Ichazo and the other students in Arica, Chile and the training in Arica before it was complete and went on to do his own work. This was before Ichazo had created his formal spiritual school, which he later named Arica. So as the work of both men continued to grow and develop they became slightly different from one another.

From the Arica trainers, I learned what was in Ichazo’s trainings, etc., post-Naranjo. For example, when I was teaching an Enneagram workshop there I learned from another teacher from Arica that Ichazo did not teach subtypes, which confirmed what Naranjo had said in 1996. So, after studying with all the founders of the Enneagram and having conducted multiple research studies of my own the puzzle pieces that had some confusing elements began to fit together and make sense. In fact, all the terminology that might be confusing makes sense when you know how it evolved.

A little back story: Jack Labanauskas and Andrea Isaacs, the founders and editors of the Enneagram Monthly, asked me if I would write a review of the intensive with Naranjo because it was the first Enneagram Intensive Naranjo had taught in the US and he has not taught at all in the US for 20 years. I agreed and shared many nuances of type that I learned from Naranjo. The article is titled Reflections on Type. You can read it on my website under research articles at

Jack and I also asked Naranjo if he would teach the Instincts since there was so little known about them at the time. I gave Naranjo my book with my first set of findings on the Instinctual Subtypes (Enneagram type combined with the instinctual type becomes the instinctual subtype).

I wanted to validate my findings and not create any further misunderstandings if I was wrong. He graciously agreed to teach the instinctual subtypes and also gave me permission to add his view of the instincts and the 27 instinctual subtypes in my book on the instincts that I had given him, Enneagram Instinctual Subtypes.

I had him confirm my notes for accuracy. This is key in the transmission of the Enneagram because Naranjo is the originator of the instinctual subtypes.

In my original book, I had the teachings of the instincts by what was thought to be Ichazo via Kathleen Speeth who learned from Naranjo, Helen Palmer who learned from Speeth and Condon who learned from Palmer. I later added other teachers and more of my own findings. After 16 years of research, I felt I knew what was consistent and true for each of the instinctual subtypes and what wasn't accurate. So in 2011, I wrote a page on each of the 27 combinations.

Now to be confusing... but true of my experience...

I find all systems reveal something important. Whatever a system reveals appears to help people discover more about their internal process. It also explains why we are different from others of the same type, tritype and instinctual type.

I have found that combining the two systems of the 27 instinctual subtypes and the 27 tritype archetypes gives a profound understanding of an individual's defense strategies, focus of attention, assets and liabilities, and of course, the corresponding gifts and unique expertise and lens of perception.

Combining it further with Meyers-Briggs and other systems gives even more data. Having said this, it does take a lot of skill that comes with time. I find it is easiest to look at each system separately and find your focus of attention and then combine them paying attention to what characteristics would be reinforced and those that would cancel out or create a blind spot.

 For example, I do see that a sexual 874 is very different from a social or self-preserving 874. All 3 are focused on the "creative or change element" the cutting edge, new frontiers and sharing what they learn as they go (the messenger) but in 3 different ways. They all want to know everything excessively, intensely (8) they can learn in a variety of ways (7) to find meaning (4).

The dominant type in the tritype such as 8 in the 874 tritype consists of the dominant type in each center or triad. When the Enneagram tritype is combined with the instinctual stacking which is the order we use the 3 instincts creates a very specific defense strategy and view of reality.

The personality is made up of the primal needs, the ego and the higher essential qualities. The instinct as the most primal aspect of the personality is dominant and always in charge of the defense system. Type and Tritype are secondary to the instinctual stacking.

Tritype includes the emotional and fixated beliefs that arise when the instinct feels threatened and perceives that it is or will eminently be deprived of what is essential for survival.

Side note:
I added the stacking when my first body of research on the instincts in 1995 showed that people used their instincts in a descending order beginning with the instinct that was most dominant. The way I listed the use of the instincts was originally by listing all three instincts such as; sx/sp/so.\ Very quickly I became lazy, as it was tedious to write all three over and over again as I compiled my findings. Since the third instinct was implied I just shortened it to the first two such as sx/sp. These two described the essence of the instinct so the third was not necessary to note. The term variants came later when Don Riso and Russ Hudson added the instincts to their work. Don already had the wing types as subtypes so he changed his to variants since they also created variations in the expression of the types.

So together they are very powerful.

If these three combinations were doing the same study of the instincts or Tritypes the way I have they would approach it very differently. I know this because of my understanding but also because those of there 3 different combinations focused on the results of my findings in very different ways.


Sexual 874
The sexual 8 drive to possess unquestionable devotion to surrender control combined with the 874 need for what is new, novel, cutting edge, powerful beautiful and meaningful creates a need to have and be devoted to passionate relationships and endeavors that are constantly evolving and/or changing.

So the sexual 874 passionately pursues the data that is intriguing (sx8), and do so in a personal manner (sx4) from as many different sources as possible (sx7) to find what is magical (7), meaningful (4) and still concrete (8).

The sexual drive for closeness, intensity and intimate encounters combined with the 874 drive to learn what is new, novel, exciting (7) provocative (8), meaningful (4), and uncharted areas, (874) creates a drive to find meaning in most everything that interests them,

The sx 7 loves the fantasy and imagination, the sx 8 the intensity and the sx 4 the depth. The 4 and 7 also want ideal circumstances, As a result, this Tritype and instinct wants it all and focuses on what is missing and perceived to be important and how to get it and want to find meaning in suffering.

All 8s have to learn the value of being sympathetic and to give encouraging feedback. But when the sexual instinct and the 4 are combined with 8, it creates a more sensitive and empathetic 8. So this 874 is a more emotional tritype combination. Having said that, the sexual 864, is the most outwardly emotional and reactive of the 27 Tritypes whereas the sexual 874 is more hidden and demonstrates the ‘cool” and finesse of the 7.

The 7 also brings a light touch, a sense of humor and optimism even when they feel sensitive and focus on what is missing. And the 8 brings a "can do" and "get over it" attitude, which at times be confusing to the sexual 874 tritype-instinctual subtype combination.

So the sexual 874 seeks ways to learn more by including personal experiences such as personal interviews with people to learn about the type's experiences from the inside->out (sx)... what it feels like to be a type, tritype or instinct with all the intimate details. They do this to give additional meaning to their findings. Each interview would be personal in nature and created in the world of exclusively "you and me". The focus of the sexual 874 is on discovery and nuances that are revealed and what is exclusive to the work they are doing.

Social 874
The social 8 drive for friends for strength and security by grouping (so), and having power though having strong alliances combined with the 874 need for what is new, novel, cutting edge, powerful beautiful and meaningful creates a need to have a socially elite (4), powerful (8) and progressive (7) group.

So, the social 874 pursues the greater world of others to form their entourage (so) as a means for survival. They gather people to “gather” the data they want. They prefer to share with their group who will then in turn share with their others, So, their focus is on gathering what is concrete (8) in a friendly, extroverted manner (7 and 8) but it is more impersonal than the sexual 874 (so). However, they want what is meaningful (4) and telling about others, so, what is true for others in their extended circle of influence, which includes like-minded individuals (7). They share what others have said in a group setting.

They are at the center of this activity (so8) and their cohorts create the arms of their extended influence. They find meaning (so4) from the standpoint of curiosity from the diversity of their tribe of participants with less of a need for intrigue and personal interviews like the sexual 874. That would only slow the social 874 down. Enjoyment comes from group participation… the more the merrier.

If there are interviews they would be in the world of "all of us" or the" greater world" rather than the personal experience the sx 874 has a lust for. This is because personal sharing excludes others in the mind of the social 874 for they are happiest when everyone is involved at the same time.

The sharing of the data of the so 874 would be enthusiastic with a look of surprise and with comments like "Can you believe that the social 146 is the most self-critical of all the 81 combinations of type, tritype, and instinctual types, and that they are secretly very shy and inhibited??????" “That must be hard to live with…I sure couldn’t live that way because I count on my self-confidence!”

Self-Preserving 874
The self-preserving 8 drive for satisfactory survival combined with the 874 need for what is new, novel, cutting edge, powerful, beautiful, and meaningful creates a need for practical but special, beautiful and diverse (7) physical comforts such a beautiful car or home.

The self-preserving 874 is less interested in gathering data. But they do want to know what makes people tick because they then know how to manage problems that interfere with their comforts and satisfactory survival. Of the 3 instincts of the 874, the sp874 pursues the data in the most impersonal manner.

The self-preserving instinct brings a more nuts and bolts, down to earth way of going after information. Rather than a lust for personal relating (sx874) or a gusto for social engagement (so874), the sp874 is focused on concrete ways of learning about what makes people do what they do.

The self-preserving 874 brings a need for comfort and satisfactory survival and the 874 brings a need to be on the cutting edge, to create and then to share. So like the other 874s, they go outward (8 and 7) to find meaning (4), by creating a tool or process to gather the information that is practical and less taxing. In a way, they are most methodical...not that the other two can't is just that the sp874 is more comfortable approaching a problem or a process in the most simplified and straight-forward manner, which is a little plain for the other two subtypes of 874.

They gather the information to figure out what motivates people (8), why people are so different (7), and why people feel the way they do (4) and what it means (4). But most importantly, they are the most inclined to be concerned with how the process impacts them. And, ultimately, they wish to find out why they as the sp874s feel emotionally reactive in some situations more than others (4) what they do in different circumstances (7) and what it costs them in time and energy (sp and 8). They want to protect their space and environment...their way of being in the world.

They can be social at times, as all 8s are seeking energy but they can be more 5ish. They may seem like they want closeness but what they want is the type of connection that comes from something beautiful (4) rather than interpersonal relating like the sx874. They can be close to a few but they do not seek closeness as a goal. The 4 in the tritype keep them focused on what is original and precious. The one Tritype that is even more removed from the need for personal relating is the sp/so 358.

The sp874 does have those that are in their circle of care that they provide for. And they seek ways to find the resources they want with the data in an expansive manner (8 and 7) by fulfilling their need for what is meaningful and most revealing (4).

Reflections on Enneagram Type:  A Workshop with Dr. Claudio Naranjo

Introductory Note:

Studying the Enneagram has been a turning point in my life. From the first book  I read and later  my first course given by Tom Condon, I became fascinated with the possibility of understanding the nature of the forces that make us who we are, and began to avidly study the Enneagram. After the Stanford conference, I studied with Helen Palmer and David Daniels, whose Professional Training and panels masterfully taught me to have empathy and compassion for all of the types. Don Riso's and Russ Hudson's Professional Training gave an organized psychic structure for each type, complete with the Levels of Health, which explain why two people of the same type can appear to be so different. Each lesson was distinctive and a testament to the seemingly inexhaustible way of evaluating human nature, and all filled a different section of the broad mosaic that is the Enneagram. For the wisdom of Gurdjieff, Ichazo, Naranjo, and my teachers, and those before them who have been the custodians of this knowledge, I am respectfully grateful.

When I was asked to write this article, I felt there was much I could share about this extraordinary workshop. However, writing about the experience proved to be another matter, for Claudio's and my speaking and writing styles are so different, as I tend to string adjectives together for emphasis, and he chooses concise words or phrases that say it all. Therefore, this article is, in effect, my "translation" of Claudio's teachings, and so any awkward phraseology should be attributed to me. Similarly, although this is my impression of what Claudio was saying, the information was so rich that it may well have resonated differently with others. Stated concisely, I walked away from the experience with a more expanded, integrated view of type. Now for the string of adjectives. ;)

In April of this year, Claudio Naranjo held a week-long workshop in Boulder, Colorado, his first in-depth teaching of the Enneagram in this country in more than 20 years. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend, and found that Claudio's unique style of teaching contributed as much to the learning experience as did the content. With wisdom, kindness, skill, and patience, Claudio freely gave of himself, indulging us and politely answering questions in a responsive yet neutral manner, creating an environment in which I thrived.

Claudio placed little emphasis on the structure of the workshop, instead placing more significance on the transmission of information toward a greater goal that emerged day by day. Interspersing nuances and descriptors with theories, the week unfolded. Rather than having an agenda and covering the types in an A-to-Z manner, Claudio's approach was distinctive and focused on relativity. Instead of a methodical approach, he employed an intriguing conversational style, similar to the way we actually speak, spontaneously and with free association.  Just as you might begin to predict what he would talk about next, he would suddenly journey into another deeper realm of the Enneagram before ultimately returning to his original path. On any subject, he would weave in nuances, theories, information, comparisons, character sketches, and a touch of humor. Thread by thread, random thoughts were strung together, and the tapestry of type began to take form. Often serious, sometimes thoughtful, clearly curious, and always knowledgeable, he elaborated on type. As a teacher, storyteller, and sage, he interwove more obvious, overt pathology with the hidden simplistic view of the wounded child. I found myself paying rapt attention to each pearl of wisdom, stringing them together one by one.

Beginning with a history of the Enneagram, Claudio acknowledged the works of Gurdjieff, Ichazo, Freud, Jung, Sheldon, Pearls, Horney, and others, combining their theories with Eastern philosophies and spiritual practices. Claudio explored many schools of thought, uniting Western psychology with Eastern traditions, resulting in a highly integrated view of type. First he discussed the different passions, and then examined the types, ultimately breaking the types down by the three instinctual subtypes. This was remarkably effective, in that we got the essence of the fixation prior to assigning it a number. The benefit of this approach was that when we were examining the actual passion, it was unfiltered by our previous conceptions of what that type was supposedly like. It contributed to an overall "layered" effect that I think opened up the organized mind.

Claudio started with interesting general observations of the passions, and then proceeded to discuss each passion in depth, making memorable statements along the way. For example, he defined the sloth of the 9 as a "lack of voltage," no motivation, and out of energy, stating that you cannot repress anger without repressing everything. He referred to it as a laziness of awareness, which he called being "functionally dumb," not a dumb person, but choosing to function with dispassion; and the laziness was of awareness or consciousness, because awareness is too painful, and distraction is preferred (e.g., "don't rock the boat; let's not create a problem by seeing how it really is"). He described it as a defense of "not knowing." In contrast, the passion of the 2 is pride and "ego flattery" or "egocentric generosity," and represents a "love trauma." The 2 has "false abundance" and is in full denial of emptiness, filled instead with false love, often "promising more than they deliver, and delivering more than they promise." As Claudio noted, there is not much room for the self when filled with pride.

In describing the passions, Claudio did not try to make them appear equal, yet suggested that all the passions equally keep us from our essence. Possibly, the mood in a society or a historic moment may determine whether or not a particular passion is considered good or bad. If so, this might explain his theory that many 3s believe they are 8s, for in business, some 8-like traits are valued and esteemed. Thus, some 3s, recognizing that this is how they need to be seen in order to be successful, have identified themselves as 8s; but their underlying motive is that of a 3, which is to fulfill the role.

Claudio teaches that the wings are ever-present, and that the point is the convergence of the wings. He introduced theories that the passion is the "yearning" and visible by age five and is a response to the situation, an emotional pattern, whereas the fixation is the "way of being," a life philosophy and an abstraction that is in place by age seven. He also teaches that the instinctual type is one of three sub-personalities that is the "auxiliary passion." He suggests that outwardly the instinctual subtype can look positive, like a talent, or something of which one should be overly proud, but inwardly is a reflection of unhappiness with a price to be paid, e.g., "the oyster is not too interested in the price of the pearls."

With regard to the instinctual subtypes, one intriguing insight to type 4 was the introduction of a rare type of sexual 4 that can be "counter-envious" with 8-like tendencies, which Claudio described as often appearing "more 8 than an 8." This sexual 4 is in denial of envy, is self-confident, claims position, and knows his or her own worth ("I deserve it"). Moreover, this 4 can be cannibalistic, overstep boundaries, and diminish others to make the self bigger and to prove one right. Examples given were Hitler and Pacino in Scent of a Woman. This raises the question of "counter types" for each of the Enneagram points.

Claudio's words were carefully measured, extremely concise, and effective. There was nothing forced or artificially balanced, with no sense of "apology" with respect to any particular type, thus permitting one to view the types clearly. For example, when discussing the passion of fear, he described it as a lack of courage or as too much fear, in effect a fear of fear, adding that perhaps all of us can be cowards, but not all of us are afraid of fear. He submitted that the passion arises from the attempt to avoid experiencing fear or projecting fear, and trying to ignore having fear, resulting in suspicion and no faith in self. So a defiant, counterphobic attitude arises from the need to defend and be guarded, to be inhibited. This suggests how the counterphobic 6 differs from the 8, the 6 is inhibited, whereas the 8 is notï¿i.e., the counterphobic 6 can be bold and do heroic things ("military man") but still have phantoms or phobias.

He further stated that 6s feel "swallowed by others." This choice of words creates a clear visual picture that rings with validity. Being "swallowed by others" might be interpreted as a fundamental fear of what could happen to them, a terrible fantasy, imagined exaggerated danger. There is a tendency to submit, and the counterphobic fights that tendency, while the phobic runs away. Anything new would be threatening, terrible. Therefore, the 6 is slow and "holds back and does not display" and instead becomes a "proof" junky.

Choosing words that create pictures is another impression of Claudio's teaching style. Furthermore, he does not seem to use the same approach for each type, and instead uses the words that serve the type. As an illustration, Claudio sees the 7 as passive-aggressive with humor, diplomacy, and conscious manipulation, believing that "having my way is love." When he talked about the aspect of rationalization of the 7s, he referred to them as having a lubricated or "slippery" quality. As "utopians," the 7 likes and offers gentleness. With a philosophy of life to "live and let live," the 7 has a lighthearted way of getting around the super ego. Yet, "behind every good boy there is a spiteful brat" (Fritz Perls), and what is not observable is the 7's non-connection and hidden paranoia.

Claudio views the chief feature as the "core of character," a "distorting of reality, an illusion, a trap, a cognitive defect, a ruling passion¿the crazy idea about things," and sees the passions as the basic motivations. He described that all the passions are various deficiency motivations¿a wanting, a form of light passing through different filters creating different colors. The capital sins, as well, are thought to be deviations in psychic energy, creating destructive effects in life and spiritual obstacles.

He portrayed the fixations as ways of being hung up on our own assumptions of reality¿the fixation is the particular assumption of reality we have, and it crystallizes in our consciousness, "lack of appreciation of life as it is," and is slightly different for each of us. My understanding is that he believes that we contend with all nine fixations, and that it is just a matter of which one we overuse.

Claudio sees the 5 as feeling a sense of impoverishment, having very limited resources and energy, and with non-expression of feeling (dry, desert-like depression). They tend to amputate reality, repressing whatever they feel is bad about themselves, and because of such repression, their unexpressed anger goes inward. Thus, they are easily depleted and look inward so keenly that solicitations from the outer world are experienced as interference, i.e., "you are in the way of my listening to myself."

Both the 5 and 1 seem to repress anger. However, by comparison, the passion for the 1 is anger and is motivated by the need for "perfect values," perfectionism, and more importantly a lack of acceptance for imperfection. So unlike the 5, the 1 has inverted anger "reaction formation," a moral superiority, kindly intentions that cover anger, a rejection of one's own experience in favor of what should be (a willed positive regard not supported by true loving feelings), therefore at odds with reality.

Working with further distinctions, he explained that the reason the 1 and 3 have a surface resemblance is that the 3 has the "right image" (e.g., the perfect person), whereas the 1 has the "perfect values." He cited Dick Tracy, Barbie, and Star Trek's Mr. Spock as examples of the 3. He sees the 3 as having no feelings, like HAL the computer in the movie 2001. The 3 modulates expression of feeling; they look like they feel "nice" when they do not feel "nice" at all. The deception is the logical and clear simulation of feeling. Think of HAL, who in an effort to be efficient killed off his own people and then kept the information from himself and searched for the killer.

Claudio teaches transmission through relativity, which he accomplishes by comparing opposites by juxtaposition rather than by cataloguing. Everything is compared and contrasted and has a point of reference, i.e., the Sexual 4 is arrogant and demanding, whereas the Self-Preservation 4 is oneish and tenacious; or the 8 is spending energy, whereas the 5 is saving energy.

Another aspect of comparison is the relationship of opposition in the Enneagram. For example, the 1 and 5 are on the "anal axis," the 2 and 7 are on the "oral receptive axis,"  and the 4 and 8 are on the "oral aggressive axis." Some of the similarities between type included those that shared common issues. In addition, the 1 and 5 have issues with control, the 2 and 7 share issues with connection, and the 4 and 8 share intensity.

Claudio introduced a multitude of theories and intriguing ways of slicing the "Enneagram pie." Of the triads, he said the 8-9-1 was the triad dealing with ignorance or unconsciousness, the 2-3-4 with craving or desire, and the 5-6-7 with issues of hate or aversion. In addition, the 8-9-1 was the neutral aspect of the Enneagram, the 2-3-4 was the extroverted perspective of the Enneagram, and the 5-6-7 was the introverted. He saw the right side of the Enneagram as primarily feminine and social, and the left side as primarily masculine and antisocial, and so on. He gave us many, many different Enneagrams, so to speak. These perspectives suggest different internal views he has synthesized, resulting in how he sees type.

With regard to the polarity of temperament, he viewed the 7 and 4, as well as the 5 and 2, in sharp contrast to one another. The 7 is seen as the happy character, whereas the 4 is seen as the sad character; and the 5 is seen as having cool aloofness, whereas the 2 is seen as having warmth and intimacy.

Another aspect of temperament was mood. He talked about mood (elation versus depression), and that the 2-3-4's are quick and gregarious, and the 5-6-7's slow and timid. He discerned that within the triad, there is a contrast in mood. For example, the 2 and 7 have the high moods, and the 4 and 5 have the low moods, in their respective triads. An example of the high mood in the "extroverted triad" is the 2, which we know to be up, quick, gregarious, and outgoing. Similarly, an example of the low mood in the "introverted triad" is the 5, which we know can be depressed, slow, withholding, and withdrawn, and so on.

As mentioned, the 4 and 5, at the pit of the Enneagram, are hypersensitive and see the abyss, and are difficult and fussy versions of the low moods from the two different triads. In contrast, 8-9-1, the third triad at the top of the Enneagram, is described as ignorant, neutral, insensitive, and unconscious, and as "defensive extroversion with an avoidance of inwardness." This insensitivity is perhaps a reflection of self-forgetting. As an example, the 8 has "solution mastery," tends to be a cynic, exploitive, and focuses on the simple nuts and bolts of life, and is viewed as tough, rebellious, vindictive, insensitive, and thick. Most important, the 8 is insensitive to subtlety, and needs strong stimuli, e.g., "loud music, heavy spices, and intensity to feel alive."

Having submitted our childhood histories to Claudio prior to the workshop, we were also able to delve into a variety of self-diagnostic psychological exercises and broke into groups by type, where impressive similarities and patterns emerged when the data was shared. We put our results to graphs, clearly demonstrating a similar pattern of attention, which was even more visible when we shared the results on panels.

Through observing the demeanor of a person, something can be perceived that is deep and profound. The trick is to be able to recognize it when it manifests. This brings to mind a Holographic picture or kaleidoscope, which when shifted reveal images not previously seen. Similarly, you need to know what you are looking for when determining type. As to knowing what to look for, perhaps it is in reality everything synthesized that with subtlety reveals a crystallized sense of type, like the varying perceptions realized from the Holographic picture or the kaleidoscope. Therefore, when an individual displays an "eagle eye," upright posture, with a carriage that is very proper and held tight, and with a finger that tends to point out all the "shoulds" and "should nots," we might all agree that this is a 1. Admittedly, this approach may not always work, for there is invariably the element of individuality. However, this concept clearly represents a way of seeing that, if understood, can be extremely powerful.

Of course, there remains an ongoing question, which subtleties do you decide are defining and, thus, indicative of type? It is unlikely that one answer will apply to everyone, and so an approach for one type will not necessarily work for another. What was most noteworthy about this workshop, its style and approach, was how it emphasized the subtle nuances about all the types, the messages that surface on their own and that you can recognize if you are receptive to them. The ability to do this must be what Claudio calls his "nose" or "seeing through the game of the other.

Claudio's focus was on recognizing the pathology and the hidden passion of the types. He reinforced that the study of typing must go beyond written descriptions, and that of much more importance is the ability to recognize type intuitively. He emphasized creating more of an environment for seeing the subtleties, trusting the gut, and letting the subtlety be the dominant factor.

I found the week to be evocative. I came away with a more expanded sense of type and yet a narrower set of criteria, "ennea-types," Claudio's assessment of personality type according to the Enneagram. The nuances have continued to surface for me. I have discovered that there is an underlying subtlety that cannot be conveyed through using one particular word or descriptor. Perhaps we rely too much on descriptors, since it is tempting to want to classify. More important, I believe there is something inherently revealing in a person's posture, something detectable in our speech, our manner, our carriage, and the distinctive way we respond to situations.

In conclusion, Claudio explained that the logic of the system suggests that whereas truth is liberating, a felt insight must also come into play; and by working on the virtues with attention to practice, transformation can occur. Finally he suggests that working with a trusted group that will call you on your fixation is one of the most effective ways to challenge your compulsive behavior and will support the growth process. 

Working with the Enneagram Type Eight Child: Parenting the Type 8 Child and Boundaries

As a student and teacher of the Enneagram, and as an Enneagram Type Eight (8) myself, I am regularly asked how to work effectively with 8s, and in particular, 8 children. I am always touched when a non-8 parent makes the inquiry, because the parent wishes to support their 8 child. I am equally touched when teachers and administrators hire me to work with children and teens that appear to be perplexing and difficult to manage. 

I love teaching the Enneagram because it helps people depersonalize what appears to be so personal and gives meaning to the different ways people perceive and defend their realities. Some of the most meaningful moments in teaching have come when I have experienced the raw honesty and vulnerability of the self-aware 8.  The experience is always the same whether it is in a boardroom, a classroom, or a county jail.  In every case, I am always unprepared for the unguarded, truly vulnerable innocence behind the 8-stance of defiance. I always see an aspect of myself and I am always humbled. Over and over again, I walk away with new found respect for their innate capacity to continue to grow and change in the human condition. When I experience this with a fellow 8, I am in awe. In psychological terms, I am certain the 8 child that resides within me feels a renewed sense of hope.... and, that the opportunity to help another 8, especially as a child, is an opportunity that will help me to continue to grow and change as well. I believe I feel this way even more due to the support and guidance I received from the right people, at the right time, and more specifically, from two truly benevolent teachers that forever changed the course of my life.

The questions I am always asked are: "Why don't the strategies that work with most children not work with an 8?," "As the parent, teacher or therapist of an 8 child,  to what degree should I allow the 8 leeway with regards to what he/she wants, and how do I set limits that will work?  Which limits teach the 8 child how to manage his/her dominating and/or intimidating energy and transform it into benevolent leadership? And, which limits are destructive to the young 8 and provoke his/her defiance and noncompliance?"

These are great questions for me as an 8, the daughter of an 8, the granddaughter of an 8, the niece of an 8 and the mother of an 8. ;) As a result, I can easily make a very biased but educated guess.

The thought that immediately comes to mind is to remember that our Enneagram Type is simply just our innate defense strategy doing what it is meant to do. We are born with it. We are hard-wired to see and respond to the world the way we do. By definition, a defense would indicate a reaction to protect from something that feels threatening. This of course would be true for all of the 9 Enneagram Types. I believe the key is to understand that our Enneagram Type defense strategy, if left unmanaged, will end up hurting others the very same way that we are trying "not" to be hurt "by" others.

8s are intense even as children. They have big everything — big energy, big tears and big ideas, etc. 8s have big energy.  So, they talk louder, laugh harder, and even as young children cry with greater intensity the other 8 types. So, 8s often report that their actions and intentions are often misinterpreted, misrepresented, and labeled negatively. This is very painful to the 8s, so they stop crying at a very young age for fear that their sadness will be used against them.  They quickly learn to not give anyone the power to hurt them. Instead they fight for their truth to be heard. This is very hard on the young 8, especially when their explanations go unheard and their intent and motivation is misunderstood.

How does the power struggle begin? 
The reason that I begin here is that from the outside perspective the direct 8 style appears to be the initiating force. But, as with all of the defenses, from the inside it feels like it is a necessary reaction to survive an incoming threat that feels overwhelming. The difference may simply be that the young 8s’ defense style appears stronger than the other 8 styles because 8s take charge of any perceived injustice and retaliate to protect themselves from being unfairly dominated. The 8 seeks revenge to even the score, no more, no less, exactly the same. Rather than walking away or simply defending a position, the 8 approach is to turn the tables and seek the advantage to avoid being at the mercy of any further injustice. The other 8 types either become defensive, seek help from other adults or just ignore the threat by suppressing it. These also come with their own set of problems… ;). But they are just easier to understand from the outside looking at a child that is upset.

Even as an infant, I remember the feelings of frustration that I experienced when I could not impact my environment.  I could walk and climb by the age of 12 months, and that included climbing in and out of my crib.  I felt exhilarated when I could crawl, even more joyous when I could walk, and then truly liberated when I could run, skip, climb and jump.   I was never cautious and explored life with a lust for life.  I was constantly told I was like a force of nature. I remember being confused when my mother was initially proud of my agility but then became constantly angry and frustrated when I was always on the move, exploring and experiencing everything in my environment and beyond.  As an adult, I understood why "the beyond part" was such a source of frustration to her. I was totally fearless and uninhibited. I learned how to move a chair and climb up on anything and reach cupboards and drawers so early that it made tracking me a full-time job.  

Even with a nanny, I was many handfuls compared to my three brothers.  I simply had a child-like call of the wild. I wanted the freedom to explore whatever captured my interest and wanted to do things other children never even thought of doing. So, I was constantly punished for disobeying, such as taking off my itchy clothes, climbing up my dresser to get the clothes I wanted, taking apart something that I found fascinating like my grandmother's mirror and lipstick, (wow that lipstick sure seemed like a special crayon with a shiny mirror and a lid). And as all parents of 8s know, once an 8 has set their heart on exploring something, they do not stop trying until they can get it. As a baby, I could not stop thinking about it. So my mom and grandmother felt that they had not been stern enough, so to punish me they put me in my crib and went outside to socialize. But, baby or no baby,  I wanted that red crayon so I went and got it from my grandmother’s handbag in the living room and climbed back into my crib to color. But as you can imagine, my mother and grandmother were NOT happy that I colored all over my blanket and walls, and were even angrier that I could climb out of my crib and open my bedroom door. At that moment they forgot that I was a baby. They just tried to curb my “bad” behavior (which was innocent curiosity at that age) with punishments.

The problem was that my behavior was age appropriate but due to my agility, intelligence, curiosity and strong will, I seemed older that I was. So, it seemed like I was being defiant and was directly disobedient. This is because 8s are often very age progressed in terms of independence and physical agility.  But emotionally, they are still young and vulnerable and very sensitive. The truth was that I was just too young to understand why my mother and grandmother were so upset with me.  I was innocently having fun exploring my world. So, it was threatening to be punished over and over again before I could even talk. I was so confused and angry that I learned not to cry and gave up seeing my mother and grandmother as sources of comfort.  I was just too young to understand the consequences they felt would guide me to develop more obedient and acceptable behaviors, but too young to see how exhausting it would be to have me as a child. 

My mother and grandmother had no idea that they had set in motion the course for the ultimate power struggle, because 8s, even at ages 12-18 months, will not back down if something seems mean, confusing, physically hurts or feels unfair. I remember making a conscious decision to go it alone because they didn't make any sense to me and they never seemed to understand the joy I felt expanding my horizons.  They couldn't know then what we all know now. They did not know that they could have sat with me and said, "Of course you want to play with the lipstick, it looks just like a fancy cool crayon that opens and closes. I know you are sad that I have to take it away. I know it must be so hard to understand. It must seem really unfair. Let me show you how to hold it so it doesn't break or stain the sofa or your blanket, and, I feel so sad that you want something that I can't give you. But I am your mommy and it is my job to keep you safe, and as the mommy I have to take the crayon away because it isn’t really a crayon, it is a lipstick, and this is how a crayon and lipstick are different and that’s why I can’t let you play with it.” Instead, I just wondered why they were being so mean and were not letting me play with the big red crayon with the mirror.

The 8 child’s view
So very early on, my primal drive to explore and take charge combined with my parent's attempt to curb my behaviors with daily punishments, caused me to not trust them. I personally expected the world to be cold, indifferent to my needs, unfair and unjust. I expected NOT to be protected. Punishment "without representation" felt unjust and triggered my innate defense strategy of defiance and non-compliance. Further disciplines without fair representation further compounded this cycle creating a strong sense of distrust for adults that were perceived to be abusing power. And, in terms of consequences, this only served to reinforce my world view that there was no love in the world and that I was truly on my own. Therefore, the true life-altering experiences happened not when I was punished, but rather when I was afforded the opportunity to be taught the power of love, wisdom and compassion by a truly benevolent teacher.

An 8 child's Story
In the 6th grade, during the Easter Break, I was at the school participating in outdoor supervised play with 2 friends; a whip smart social 137, and a congenial self-preserving 935.  At first, we were having fun but then we became bored.  That was when our 9-friend told us that she had found a classroom open during the Christmas Holidays. It seemed unlikely that it would happen again, but it was an interesting idea for 3 bored 11-year olds. So, the three of us decided to check the doors and sure enough, we found a classroom that was unlocked, just as our 9 friend had predicted. 

We saw it as an unexpected opportunity for an amazing adventure filled with possibilities. We moved things all around the room; I changed the names on the chalkboard and looked into the desks and found other names and put them up instead.  I was sure they would laugh at the change of the names for the all star students.  I moved books from one desk to another.  I thought it would be like an Easter scavenger hunt looking for whose book was where. My 137 friend was experienced with equipment, so she talked into the tape recorder. My 9 friend was going through the drawers and desks too, so I imagined that she was rearranging the books too. Later she told me she had helped herself to random lunch money as well. I told the 1 that I thought it was stupid for a straight A student to leave her voice as evidence on the tape recorder, and I told my 9 friend that I thought it was uncool to take the kids lunch money.  They both shrugged their shoulders and I imagined that it was handled, and besides, we were 11 so we didn’t say much more. We had had fun creating total havoc just anticipating how much the kids would enjoy not having to do school work and that it would be fun for the students to sort it all out when they returned to school from the holiday week. After all they wouldn't have to work! Right?

Later, as we ate our ice cream cones both friends begged me to not tell anyone. I thought that we rearranged the room to boast about our adventure, like in the movie The Parent Trap, so I was confused, but gave my word of honor and we all finished our cones and went home.

Anyhow, the friend that was the straight A, Enneagram social 137, school president, became riddled with guilt and told her parents. I of course kept my bond of secrecy, as she had begged me to give my word that I would never tell anyone what she did. To an 8 their word is their bond.  So, I did not reveal her name, even knowing, that she had told them mine. I took pride in keeping my word even if she couldn’t.  My mom, a self-preserving 469 felt very anxious and ashamed.  She thought the social 137 was the good child and that I, as the sexual 874, was the problem child. 

We all met at the school the following Monday morning. It was so quiet and strange to be there before the teachers or kids were there.  Both of my friends were there with both of their parents. I was with just my mom.  I later found out that my Dad, a social 874, did not think it was a huge deal and secretly respected me for keeping my word. My friends were both fearful and gently crying. It made me very sad for them.  So, I knew right then and there that they weren’t as tough as I was. So, since I was going to miss out and be in trouble anyway, I didn’t tell on them and took the full blame, for everything.  This is an example of the way that 8s protect their friends and the way the 8 will be self-sacrificing for intimates that are weaker than they are.

The Principal, the social 136, was very resolute in the belief that a strong hand and severe punishment was the way to teach a wayward, strong-willed child (sexual/intimate 874) the lessons of life. Especially one that had corrupted the school’s ‘straight A’ student body president (137), and that nice quiet girl 962, as he couldn’t remember her name. He assumed it was my idea as an outspoken kid that in his eyes had just become the trouble maker and ring leader. ;) He was sure it was all my idea, and no one corrected him (typical 8 experience…) because actually it was our quiet, self-preserving 935 friend’s idea. ;) But, we all had agreed to check it out, so I felt it was on an all of us. After all, what were the odds that we just happened to come across a door that was not locked?

 His punishment was to have me spend all of lunch and recess in his office for the last 2 months of school, to publicly humiliate me, as well as deprive me of all graduating festivities and events. This of course is the kind of experience that 8s believe created their 8ness. After all, I had spent 7 years getting through the rigors of limitation that school rules presented to an 8, and graduation was a major element towards freedom from my perception of elementary school oppression. I could not see the fairness or justice in losing all privileges due to one misguided mistake. But I remained silent as I held steadfastly to my stance of having given my word.

A very fair-minded Vice Principal (social 739) that had been our 5th grade teacher knew that we were all good kids that just didn't understand the potential harm our fun could cause. He was also struck by the fact that I took total blame for the transgressions and never told on my friends. Later, I was to learn that this was my ‘straight As’ 1 friend’s cry for much needed attention to not have to be the perfect person. At the time, of course, this was unknown to me. I was just having fun and did not experience guilt yet as I did not intend any harm.  My cry turned out to be of another kind, far more hidden and silent. 

Years later, my mom told me that he had said she did not need to worry about me because I was a true leader with a big heart, an original mind, and an innate sense of justice. He told her that I would make a great adult but that some teachers and adults would not appreciate how outspoken I was until then.  He told her that one day she would recognize that I had shown true courage in the face of adversity by taking the full blame. She told me he said that if they just help me get there, I would one day be in a position of power and that he felt certain that I had the capacity to wield truly benevolent power. But she never mentioned it to me, until 40 years later. She was a self-preserving 469 after all, so she doubted it. :)

From the limited perspective of an 11-year old, this experience with the principal not asking me anything and jumping to conclusions, served to reinforce the theory that life is not fair so why respect unjust authority? Why care? Most of all it confirmed the notion that I needed to be even tougher, because I truly was on my own. I would also suggest that this further proves to the 8-stance that the 8 is correct in their world view and that due to experiences such as these, the 8 begins to stop sorting for data to the contrary. I would also suggest that there is a trap for all of the types. There are always situations and experiences to support whatever our Enneagram Type defense strategy would have us believe to be true. 

Seat of Shame
For 2 months I did sit in the principal’s office right were all of the kids came and went. I was humiliated and was imploding inside of course, but I never shed a tear and came across as self-possessed, nonchalant and unaffected. I even made jokes.  This was far from the truth. 8s protect themselves from painful emotions that feel debilitating. 8s deny their vulnerability so that they can prevail in the face of adversity. I endured this extreme punishment without complaining, because such extreme injustice and mistreatment fueled my passion to seek the advantage and take the lead one way or another. I would stand against the unjust punishment. This is because 8s are natural born leaders that naturally know how to power through obstacles and have the ability to use mind over matter. They have the strength to stand alone for their truth, stand up for the underdog, disadvantaged and under-represented and at great personal cost.  And, the 8 is the Enneagram Type that has the defense strategy designed to challenge oppression and fight against tyranny and injustice, the very qualities of a true leader. The problem is that the 8 child needs to learn to work with their tendency to be assertive and overpowering, just as the timid 6 or 9 child needs to learn how to speak up for themselves rather than being passive-aggressive. 

The vice-principal (739) was a good guy.  I really liked him, so I hated to disappoint him.  He kept talking about that fact that I was a leader and an original thinker. At 11, it didn’t make much sense to me.  He didn’t seem to be mad at all. He said that I was a good kid and would make a great adult.  He reminded me that in 5th grade I didn’t read the stories in order and color that I was supposed to and that I was the only kid that didn’t, but that I did read them all, and that I just saw a better way that made more sense to me. I thought they should be read in order of interest, just like at the library.  He agreed.  I didn’t always follow assignments the way they were intended, but did what I had to. So, he said that he was looking forward to what I was going to contribute to the world.

He passed his punishment on to the Teacher of the classroom we had rearranged.  So, his punishment was far more painful than that of the principal. It was instructive rather than punitive. In contrast, the vice-principal's punishment was to assign me to meet after school each day with the teacher (social 269) whose room I had vandalized. This was horrifying to me. It was easy to endure sitting in the principal's office for all to see, as I believed it made me tougher. I was after all, being unfairly treated and a survivor.  However, to have to face my unknown victim was unnerving. I had visions of slave labor to further define the unjust world of the adults.  Internally I just said to myself, “They can tell me what to do but they can’t not tell me how to think or feel.” 

Ouch, not so. This teacher ( social 269) was very nice and never made me 'do' anything. Every day she just talked with me. Every day, I had to feel more and more feelings and it was agonizing. When was she going to be mean and unjust? Why didn't she make me a slave so I could rile against her tyranny? Why didn't she treat me with disdain so that I could raise my jaw and glare at her with defiance? Why was she so understanding? I had no defenses for such unexpected acts of kindness. I felt bereft of resources to deal with this kind of power.

She did not lecture, she did not chastise, in fact, she told me nothing, she only inquired. She continued her onslaught of gentle benevolence by asking me questions about what mattered to me. She asked me what I had hoped for by rearranging the room. When I told her, she laughed and then explained how some of the children laughed and had a wonderful time but that many of the children were frightened and others thought that their things might be gone never to be found and cried. This of course, had never occurred to me.  I had to let in that my actions had left little 3rd graders feeling afraid and unprotected, my very own core wounding. I was crushed! I wasn't a Santa Claus as I has imagined; I was the Grinch to these little vulnerable 8-year-olds. I found it unforgivable. My self-vengeance was far crueler and greater than anything the principal had denied me.

In addition, to further make me squirm in my own feelings, she asked me what I wanted out of life. She asked what my dreams were, and since I was naturally protective, what I wanted to do as an adult to protect others. She asked me if I would want to have me for a friend and why? I had never thought of these things. They were life-altering questions. She said that she would have been happy to be my friend in school because I was so protective and willing to take the full blame to protect my friends. I agreed, but then I immediately told her that on second thought,  there were things I wouldn't like about having me as a friend. I found a longer list, and the beginning of the journey towards becoming my own trusted friend. For the first time, I knew who I didn’t want to be and slowly began to imagine who I might be, or could become.

It was there in the room of my disgrace that I found the divine embrace of a strong, flexible boundary that introduced a mirror to my innermost self, and a window to my soul. I no longer felt like a gorilla in a small zoo cage unable to be, but rather a gorilla high in the jungle with a family troop to protect. It was there in that classroom of my misadventure that I learned the true meaning of teaching consequences with 'benevolent' tough love. I learned about life in a new way, and how to have true power, the power of benevolence. I was not crushed, rejected, demeaned or humiliated as I had been so many times before when my intentions were misunderstood. Rather, I was like a crumpled piece of paper retrieved from the trash bin to be gently unfolded, read and accepted so that I might know that like the paper I had once been a part of a majestic tree - worthy of being cherished and kept, rather than discarded.

Rarely does a year go by that I do not remember my misadventure in the 6th grade, the moment of my disgrace, or most importantly, the benevolent mirrors that allowed me to see myself clearly for the first time. I will always remember the experience of the adults that supported me by affording me the opportunity to glimpse my potential adulthood, open my defended heart and discover the power of my impact. From then on, I chose to try and have a positive impact on others and show the same power of compassion and understanding that I had received. I actively sought out examples in my world to draw upon to shape a new view of true power. As a result, I try to show kindness in the face of disempowerment, but I can assure you that I can still fail at times, in spite of my efforts. The difference is that due to the benevolence that I was shown as a child, I want to be benevolent with others. Because it came as such a surprise, without judgment and with such kindness, it created a lasting imprint on my character. I am truly more because of them.

Empowering the 8 child
So, back to the question I am always asked : "Why do strategies that work with most children NOT work with an 8?," "As the parent, teacher or therapist of an 8 child,  to what degree should I allow the 8 leeway with regards to what he/she wants, and how do I set limits that will work?” “Which limits teach the 8 child how to manage his/her dominating and/or intimidating energy and, which limits are destructive to the young 8 and provoke their defiance and noncompliance?"

In answer to the inquirers’ initial questions, I can say that promoting "consciousness" is far more important than handing our "consequences,” and it is the best place to begin.

For the 8, to learn from traditional consequences, the 8 must first have a great deal of trust and respect.  If the 8 trusts you and respects you, they will want to please you. This counter-intuitive approach removes the power struggle.  Once engaged in a power struggle, the 8 will never back down and the message you wish to teach will be lost. The journey is to assist the 8 by listening to the 8s explanations of what happened, and by validating their experience -- as they see it. When this is in place, you can slowly help the 8 learn to manage the pain that is underneath the flippant remarks and "big" behaviors.

Involve them in the solution, ask them what they would do and why? They will be flippant at first but don't get hooked, they are just unconsciously testing you.  They are asking "Are you real? "Are you strong enough to be there for me? "All of me?" So just smile when they are flippant and then nonchalantly keep going. Ask the 8 what he or she thinks is important in this type of situation and they will innocently reveal their inexperienced viewpoints, and you will have a more meaningful way to approach the problem.  Ask what he or she thinks would make a difference and what he or she thinks would be fair to all involved.  

When you disagree, make deals.  I know that this is also counter-intuitive, but this is what feels fair to an 8. When the 8 is adamant about his or her truth about what is or isn't fair, don't back away, don’t back down and don’t assert dominance.  It will only trigger a huge power struggle that you can never win. Instead, make a deal. Say something like: "Ok, you win this time, next time it is my turn." Ask him or her to give his or her word. Then whatever you do keep your word.  The 8 will then feel compelled to keep his or her word and will reluctantly comply when you remind him or her of the deal the two of you made.  And never back away from this, ever.

Begin with little deals then bigger deals as the 8 grows up. Teach that a true leader has power because they keep their word. The key is to let the 8 have small victories so you have the important victories. Remember that prior to the stance of defiance that makes you want to use traditional methods, this will only serve to reinforce the 8 feelings of disempowerment. Remind yourself that the 8 is in a great deal of pain.  Anger acts as an immediate anesthetic protecting the 8's more tender emotions. When you have validated the 8s experience, no matter how far-fetched it sounds, they will feel heard and become more receptive and less defiant. Wow, it sounds like you really felt ______.  Mirror what they have said in a nonchalant manner, so they don't feel manipulated or patronized. Repeat what they have said verbatim, don't use your words or overview, use the 8's words only. Only ask him or her to tell you more about the way they were wronged.  Underneath is a very real wound. 

I can promise you that prior to any act of defiance, the 8 felt caught off guard and wounded by a sense of rejection for just being an 8. It is their innocence they are protecting, and that’s why the reaction is so fierce.  The pain caused by the misinterpretation of the 8s motivation is at the heart of the matter, therefore, discovering the pain the 8 feels and has rejected will explain the pain they inadvertently cause. The 8's innocence is at the core of this cycle. Every 8 might benefit from learning what they are really feeling in order to understand their need to defend their heart so strongly. What is unknown and usually unseen is how empathetic the 8 is. Empathy that is so great, it needed to be limited or denied in order for the 8 to survive. But eventually it must be nurtured to be integrated. This is the most difficult thing you can ask an 8 to do. The 8 fears that if they feel their full capacity for empathy it will crush them and that they will be betrayed and become pathetically weak and undesirable.

Inquiring as to what happened is the beginning.  8s deny they were feeling anything because it is out of their consciousness. If the 8 is too defended and doesn't know, or can't retrieve the event or feeling, a gentle inquiry as to how others are not as tough as the 8 might feel in the same circumstances, may prove helpful. Analogies using those the 8 loves and sees as vulnerable, such as in younger siblings, cousins, friends or pets, often breaks the direct stance of 'being against'. Love and protection will rise for those the 8s deem in their circle of care. This is where one may find the clues to the deeper, more painful and hidden issues behind the 8 bravado and rash acts.

One can be assured that prior to the negative behavior or outburst the 8 felt a deep sense of betrayal, humiliation and injustice where the 8 experienced themselves as unable to affect the outcome, rendering them powerless and without mercy. The unbearably painful experience may have occurred a moment earlier or days earlier.  This is also true for adult 8s, the wound could have happened years earlier, but it did occur and the 8s internal victim was sent to the dungeon of their heart to be silenced.

Exploring what the 8 might have been feeling just prior to the action is a large part of the discovery process. This can take what feels like an eternity to non-8s. So, hang in there.  Think of it as investment spending.  It takes forever for the 8 to get to their feelings because their defense strategy is in place to give them the power to act, even when they hurt and to have courage in the face of adversity. Think of it as a biological imperative. If they talk listen.  Don’t try to make them feel better or interrupt their feelings by reassuring them. It is not their defense strategy and they will immediately opt out of feelings and feel like they need to take care of you.

So, keep your hand in your lap after a few wounds, tell him or her that he or she matters to you, that you care about his or her feelings, and that you love him or her no matter what. That this is just life, but that you will get through this together, side by side, back to back, looking out for one another.

But, by talking about the hurt feelings they buried and denied, they are able to answer their own questions. Once the 8 is in the feeling state, it may be imperative to listen to every slight that the 8 may have felt he/she has endured, especially those by you. Like a chest retrieved from the attic after years of storage, opening it may create a flurry of wounds that fly out in need of immediate attention. The scabs feel ripped open and the scar tissue feels rigid and painfully twisted. The bigger question the 8 is asking is "Can you take it, can you take all of me and my hurt at one time?" The 8 belief is that no one could, therefore no one can.

So hang in there. This is a wonderful opportunity to prove the 8 wrong. After the deeper emotions have surfaced and are fully spent is a window of opportunity to be inside the full and open embrace of the 8 heart. This is the rare moment between defensive posturing when one can benevolently teach the 8 how comforting it feels to be treated with loving boundaries that stretch and grow with the 8. This is when one can teach the 8 the power of setting their own boundaries to self-limit; that anger is a signal of pain and betrayal, that it can be healed yielding powerful insights. Most of all, this is the time when one can deeply touch an 8 by demonstrating the power that comes from treating others with benevolence.

©1995-2019 Katherine Chernick Fauvre

On Being An Enneagram Type Eight

When I first learned about the Enneagram, there was very little written about it. The description of the 8 was the one I liked least, yet felt the most familiar. The 8 is often seen as the boss, leader, confronter, asserter, and protector, and described as self-confident, forceful, dominating, combative, and vengeful. Whereas, I had trouble relating to either the power-hungry, vengeful oppressor or the self-restrained, magnanimous hero, I did see myself as a rugged individualist and identified with the more average traits of leadership, confidence, generosity, self-sufficiency, forcefulness, and intimidation.

In the past, my issues centered around power - where it was, who had it, and was it used fairly. I also knew that I always felt provoked by the unspoken, respectful of truth, disarmed by vulnerability, and touched by innocence, which is generally the stance of the 8.

By nature, I did not seek out conflict, but I certainly never avoided it. While I never wanted to consciously overpower others, I was sensitive to betrayal and did feel the need to prevail, and if provoked I sought the advantage to avoid being vulnerable. In the past, when people wanted me to do something I perceived as controlling, I felt like I was being personally challenged and retaliated in a manner I deemed fair.

Generally, I say what I mean and mean what I way, and would rather receive information directly than indirectly. Thus, in the past when someone would phrase a request or criticism in an overtly nice way, couching constructive criticism in compliments, I felt manipulated. While there may have been good intentions, I felt provoked by what wasn't being said - I heard what was left out at a higher volume. Now, however, I no longer take it personally, for I know that the direct approach can be intimidating to others of a different style.

Another characteristic of 8's that struck me as accurate for myself is a respect for truth. I may have very strong views, but if you can stand up for yourself and for me and give me your truth, I can be totally open and change my mind.

On the higher side, I like to champion others, and it is noteworthy to mention that hidden beneath the stance of strength is a vulnerable and innocent heart that is deeply touched by and protective of the disadvantaged. With the knowledge of the Enneagram and my core dynamics, I am now more compassionate of myself and others and realize that we are all simply trying to survive within our own defense strategies -- Katherine Chernick

Enneagram Types at a Glance

Enneagram Type 1 

If you are a 1, you want to be accurate, honest, fair and objective. Most importantly, you want to be respectable, to do what is right and what you feel is appropriate. You have high standards and are methodical, ethical and diligent, believing that anything worth doing is worth doing the right way. Under stress, you may have problems with resentment and become angry, nit picking and overly critical. Your core fears are of being wrong, bad, evil corruptible, inappropriate, lazy, unethical,  andlied to. At your best, you are wise, noble, act with integrity and offer sage guidance to the world.

Enneagram Type 2 

If you are a 2, you want to be appealing, giving, caring and heartfelt. Most importantly, you want to feel needed, considered important and appreciated for your efforts. You naturally pay attention to the needs and concerns of others and are ready to step in and lend a helping hand. Under stress, you may have problems with pride and find it difficult to ask for help, and become manipulative to get attention or have your needs met. Your core fears are of being worthless, unneeded, unappreciated, unwanted, inconsequential, useless, discarded, lonely, and uncared for by chosen attachments. At your best, you are an empathetic, altruistic, people-person that is able to see and intuit the needs of others and then tend to their needs.

Enneagram Type 3

If you are a 3, you want to be competent, efficient, accomplished and dynamic. Most importantly, you want to be good at what you do and to look good doing it. You are highly ambitious, driven, focused and self-motivated.  You are goal-oriented with the ability to focus. You need goals and projects to achieve and feel the reward of completion and success. Under stress, you may have problems with vanity and become self-promoting, self-deceptive or overly competitive. Your core fears are of being unsuccessful, failing, being inefficient, unmasked, found out, incapable, unable to do, unproductive, and/or second best. At your best, you are self-confident, positive, self-motivated and extremely productive.

Enneagram Type 4 

If you are a 4, you want to be inspired, intuitive, original and unique. Most importantly, you want to be passionate, true to your feelings and be authentic. You see yourself as a sensitive intellectual that is creative, expressive and spiritual. You are identified with your emotional states and their meaning. You see yourself as emotionally deep and seek beauty and meaning in every thing you do. You may have problems with envy. Under stress, you may be moody, haughty or overly emotional. Your core fears are of being painfully lacking, inadequate, flawed, defective, ordinary, not realizing your potential and being emotionally cut off. At your best, you are emotionally self-aware, self-revealing, creative and extremely compassionate and humane. 

Enneagram Type 5

If you are a 5, you want to be informed, knowledgeable, concise and perceptive. Most importantly, you want to have a clear mind, be self-sufficient and not have the entanglements of obligation. You are deeply introspective and want to understand how systems work. You may have problems with avarice. Under stress, you may be arrogant, withholding, unemotional or distant. Your core fears are of being ignorant, without mastery, expertise or knowledge, mentally drained, obligated, without resources, disembodied, incompetent with psychic panic. At your best, you are objective, insightful, wise and clear minded expert in the area of your interests.

Enneagram Type 6 

If you are a 6, you want to be safe, secure, fit in and belong. Most importantly, you want to have certainty, putting your faith in a reliable authority, a trusted friend or a known system or tradition. You are the true devil’s advocate and can always see both sides of every issue. You can struggle with feelings of fear, doubt and/or anxiety. Under stress, you can worry about being blamed and the to protect yourself, undermine or blame others. If you are the phobic 6, you will manage your fear by focusing on what could go wrong and become overly cautious. If you are a counter-phobic 6, you may deny your fear and take risks to prove that you are not afraid. Secretly you still prepare. Your core fears are of being alone, blamed for something you didn’t do, afraid of being afraid, anxious you will worry that something will go wrong, being unprepared, without a protector or back up support person and/or wise others with expertise. At your best, you are courageous, supportive, engaging, dedicated and loyal.

Enneagram Type 7 

If you are a 7, you want to be fascinating, fascinated, optimistic and enthusiastic. Most importantly, you want to be stimulated, creative, positive and excited. You see yourself as fun loving, diverse and playful. You are naturally upbeat and see possibilities that others miss. You may have problems with gluttony and always want more and the bigger, better, deal. Under stress, you may be scattered, overly happy, jaded or greedy. Your core fears are of being trapped in emotional pain, missing out, being inferior, uncool, limited, and/or bored. At your best, you are inspirational, visionary, playful, loving and joyful.

Enneagram Type 8 

If you are an 8, you want to be open, honest, direct and straightforward. Most importantly, you want to be independent, make your own decisions and direct your own course. You want to be master and commander of your own life. You are honest and take pride in calling a spade a spade. You say what you mean and mean what you say. You may have problems with being excessive and going to extremes. Too much is almost enough. Under stress, you may be intense, intimidating, overpowering or unwilling to self-limit. Your core fears are of being misrepresented, powerlessness, being manipulated, humiliated, harmed and/or controlled. At your best, you are a protective, compassionate and magnanimous leader that is both tough-minded and tenderhearted.

Enneagram Type 9 

If you are a 9, you want to be peaceful, relaxed, comfortable and natural. Most importantly, you want to be agreeable and if at all possible to avoid conflict. You are a nice person and go along to get along. You want harmonious relationships. You are very receptive and a good listener. You are patient and like to take your time in whatever you do. You may have problems with inaction. Under stress, you may be passive-aggressive, neglectful and/or indifferent to the needs of others. You may be unresponsive and/or minimize. Your core fears are of being loveless, uncomfortable, inharmonious, overlooked, discordant, unimportant, non-existent, lost in complications and/or shutout. At your best, you are steady, kind, accepting, and deeply connected to others and able to successfully mediate differences and restore harmony.

©1995-2019 Katherine Chernick Fauvre

Type 6 and “It Depends”

In all of my research studies, beginning with my first research study "Enneastyle: The 9 Languages of Enneagram Type" in 1995, the Type 6 consistently struggled with confirming their true type.  They identified with all 9 Enneagram Types.  The more counter-phobic 6 would initially type themselves as Type 8, the shy introverted and smart 6 routinely typed themselves as Type 5, the perfectionist Type 6 would type themselves as Type 1 and so on.

When interviewed, the 6s regularly state that, "It depends on the situation" when making a decision rather than just answering a question with yes or no.   Not only do 6s have trouble identifying that they are the type 6, they tend to see themselves and others in contradicting terms. This is why the Type 6 is often described as the Devil's Advocate. They also tend to track behaviors rather than motivations in an effort to be safe from potential hidden agendas or being mislead...  

The Enneagram 6s also state that they tend to choose the type they think they should be, could be, want to be or have become. In general, they report that they will answer the questions in a "inconsistently" consistent manner. Their reason is that they know they can answer yes sometimes and no at other times, yes....again, "It depends on the situation". ;)

In my most recent study "Enneagram Type, Tritype, Instinctual Type and MBTI" the 6s often used the vocabulary of the Type 6 such as smart, cautious, loyal, dependable, and avoided dangerous people or situations yet still self-identified as other types. When interviewed they were able to discover that they were in fact, a 6 once they could hear themselves repeatedly stating that the phrase "it depends in the situation".

In addition, 6s also state that they are wary of tests in general and tend to be somewhat evasive because they are not sure how their answers will be used. As a result, they may try to "fool" the test. Also, they tend to answer questions with the answer "sometimes" because don't want to be too extreme. The often feel that a yes or not answer without a qualifier is too declarative. This suggests that the Type 6 is trying to balance extremes.

Type 4 — Michael Jackson and Prince, the positive 4s

Michael Jackson and Prince are musical legends and gone way too soon. Throughout their amazing careers the two megastars enjoyed great successes. They both came of age in the 80s as young men and as solo performers. Both seemed to be children of destiny, born to entertain, to amuse, to inspire, to delight, and to touch. Through their music, they took us to the edge of our level of comfort, to the heights of exhilaration and to the depths of our emotional truth.  As true child prodigies as well as mature artists, their music helped to not only shape the 80s, it continued to evolve and define whatever genre they addressed. 

They are also a study of type 4.  Because they were stars and affluent so young they could fully indulge their types, instincts and Tritypes and live their lives as true eccentrics. Their passions could be indulged and were seen on a large stage because they were in the public eye.  Both were shy, introverted and private men that were charismatic superstars. In spite of their shyness were totally at home on stage sharing their talents with the world at large.

4 and Emotional Sensitivity
I see both men as Enneagram type 4. 4s are known for their need for connection to what is meaningful and transcendent. 

They are also known for their love of beauty and aesthetics, their chronic frustration and passion for protest, their painful self-consciousness and push-pull, love-hate style of relating, and their deep emotional sensitivity and compassion for the suffering of others. 

The idealized image of the 4 is that they are elite, original, individualistic, tasteful, creative and have an artistic sensibility. The core fear of 4 is the fear being inadequate, ordinary, flawed and/or defective. At their best, 4s are articulate, sensitive, introspective and compassionate with a strong desire to heal and transform by protesting against injustices and by giving meaning to suffering.  At their worst, 4s are hypersensitive, petty, envious, vindictive, self-absorbed, punishing and temperamental.

Male 4s
Male 4s are complex in that they have the single-minded masculine drive to initiate and conquer but it is tempered by a great deal of emotional sensitivity due to the 4 need for depth, connection, admiration and validation.  This sensitivity makes the 4 aware of nuances others miss but also creates painful self-consciousness and self-doubt that undermines their self-confidence. Male 4s are often poets and troubadours that express what they feel and in so doing, frequently express what we all feel. This proved to be very true for both Michael and Prince. So, their simultaneous rise to fame in the 80s reinforced the power of raw edgy creativity, laced with refinement, subtlety and heartfelt emotions. 

Emotional Creativity
Going the route of the power ballad was an absolute given in the 1980s even if you were in a hard rock band.  The raw emotional truth of the ballad voiced universal pain. For most hardcore rock bands, ballads were often career defining. 

Both Michael and Prince loved ballads but not in the traditional way. Rather than an occasional ballad, their feelings were infused in every piece of their music, from the raw energy of pop rock to the tender sensibility of emotional expression. 

Michael and Prince were able to express their wide range of emotions in such a poetic way that listeners could identify with both their music and their lyrics. ‘Gone Too Soon’ by Michael Jackson and ‘Purple Rain’ by Prince are only two examples of their ability to express deep and universal emotions.

‘Gone too Soon’ is a song dedicated to Ryan White, a young victim of AIDS who Michael befriended. He performed ‘Gone too Soon’ at the ball for former President Bill Clinton's first inauguration on January 20, 1993, where he highlighted the importance of supporting research for a cure for AIDS.

Prince was famous for being self-conscious and was portrayed as image conscious. ‘Purple Rain’ is a deeply moving song.  It is also the title of a movie in which Prince starred. ‘Purple Rain’ was a movie of course, but it has always been reported as very close to being autobiographical.  So to introduce himself to the mainstream audience as fragile and occasionally cruel could have killed his rising career. This probably took great courage.  This raw honesty and is another hallmark of 4.  

Sexual 4s deny their fear of rejection and reject first to manage their distress. They can be counter-envious and shameless if they are experiencing an intense emotion. They claim their position as the state of longing feels unbearable. In fact, because they are the most emotional type, with the most emotional instinct in the most emotional ‘heart’ center, when triggered they can be emotionally over the top. One sexual 4 said, “I knew I was the sexual 4 because when I feel rejected I am incredibly jealous, possessive, demanding, emotionally volatile, dramatic, intense, aggressive, loving and idealistic as hell - all rolled into one and at the same time.”

Van Jones, a human rights activist, humanitarian and close friend of Prince revealed more about the private life of Prince. According to Jones, “Prince rarely spoke about himself and, especially not about Purple Rain. Prince was always front and center, inspiring devotion and disgruntlement. Purple Rain may not be an autobiography, but it may be as close as we’ll get to his true story.”

Here is another interview with Van Jones talking about Prince.


Most 4s are humanitarians at heart. The 4s innate ability to demonstrate compassion for those that are suffering is a gift. Michael Jackson and Prince had that gift in spades.  They were true humanitarians and did a great deal to support those that were suffering throughout the world. Both had an interest in helping children. There is so much I could say about both men. Just to name a couple of examples…

In 1985, Michael co-wrote ‘We are the World’ with Lionel Ritchie for those starving in Africa. He also donated all the money he received from Pepsi, $1.5 million, to the Michael Jackson Burn Center for Children. As a Jehovah’s Witness he did not speak of his generosity.

Prince was also a devout Jehovah’s Witness, so he too could not speak of his charitable works but he did a great deal to support suffering as well. Privately, Prince supported ‘Rebuild the Dream’, a mobilization of hundreds of thousands of everyday people who come together to build strong vibrant communities from the ground up. He donated $250,000 to Eau Claire Promise Zone, a citywide grassroots coalition focused on ensuring the city’s children are prepared to graduate from college and be successful in their career and in life.

It is reported that Michael and Prince had a bitter rivalry. One report is that Michael was disappointed that Prince rebuffed his friendly efforts to be friends. Another report is that Prince did not want to sing in ‘We are the World’ because he did not like the song but was willing to write a song for those suffering in Africa. He also appeared elitist when he mocked Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ in an interview. Whatever the case may be, they were first and foremost performers and artists.  The performer that is a 4 is every bit as competitive as the performer that is the 3 or any of the other types. In fact, 4 envy may have been at the heart of their rumored rivalry. 

Both men were constantly compared to one another. Both had diversity in their music, including: funk, R&B and disco. Both dominated the album charts in the 80s, Michael with ‘Thriller’ and Prince with ‘Purple Rain’. Both were shy and reclusive. Both had their sanctuaries, Neverland for Michael and Paisley Park for Prince. 

Facts on their potential rivalry
Michael Jackson vs. Prince: The Forgotten Rivalry
By Kyle Anderson
“…The evidence suggests that the rivalry was for real, but perhaps one sided. On his 2004 album Musicology, Prince had a lyric that went, “My voice is getting higher/And Eye ain’t never had my nose done/That’s the other guy.” He left “We Are The World” sessions but did end up donating a song to the benefit album. However, recent interviews with former Prince band members shared a friendlier side.

 “They’d shoot hoops at Paisley Park,” longtime Prince drummer Bobby Z told the Star-Tribune. Prince had a deep-seeded competitive nature, so it’s easy to see where he would measure himself against Jackson’s success. Engineer David Z told a story about Prince’s attempt to play ping-pong with Jackson. “Michael drops his paddle and holds his hands up in front of his face so the ball won’t hit him. Michael walks out with his bodyguard, and Prince starts strutting around like a rooster. Did you see that? He played like Helen Keller.'”

Jackson didn’t seem to go on record about Prince — in fact, he rarely had a negative word for anybody. Today it’s almost logical for two huge stars to go head-to-head (Jay-Z and Nas, 50 Cent and Kanye West), but it’s doubtful we’ll ever see two huge rivals like Jackson and Prince again.”

All performers are competitive as a competitive edge is essential to reach the pinnacle of success performers crave. Both Michael and Prince were known to be competitive and perfectionistic.  All true artists are not only competitive; they are perfectionistic about their work.  They honed their craft and wanted to deliver the experience they envisioned. This is essential for any artist that wants to stay at the top of their field. But the sexual 4 is known for their competitive nature and hatred as a means for overcoming feelings of envy and inadequacy. And, the 479s are known for their sunny dispositions and gentle nature.

Michael Jackson 479
I see Michael as the social 479 Tritype, which has a mystical, magical, ethereal, soothing, and healing quality to it. The 479 energy is very receptive and accepting, like a gentle spirit. With Michael’s songs we felt his emotions when he debuted in 1964 at the tender age of 6. Even in his counter culture roles he was soft. When he introduced “Thriller” he was dramatic and edgy but still appeared non-threatening. 

If you watch Michael in any interview, it is easy to see that Michael had an overall countenance of fragile gentleness. He gave off the aura of someone that needed too be cared for and protected. He was bashful, refined and introspective like the introverted and inhibited social 4 often is. You can see his gentle, smiling and ethereal nature in the interview with Oprah.

As one social 4 remarked, “ I am always trying to improve my status. I never feel like I belong or have enough class and breeding to be included with those I am impressed with. I never quite find my people, and often feel left out.”  Another social 4 said, “ I am always waiting to be found out… and that I don’t measure up to my own standards.”

 Both 4 and 7 are creative. Both love fantasy and the unusual as well as the new, the novel and the creative. 7 brings a light touch, the egalitarian perspective, and a strong desire for excitement and amusement. It also brings a need for variety, as well as positive and upbeat interactions.  

Michael felt like he lost his childhood to his career. He began working as a little boy as the lead singer in the family business of the Jackson 5. He had a hard driving, abusive father that relentlessly had his sons rehearse so there was no time for childhood activities. 

Michael loved the attention his career and success provided but he still longed for the happy childhood he did not have.  He is said to have been sad about his childhood so wanted to recreate his childhood with more joyous memories by having all the things he felt he missed and wanted as a child. His focus was to create happier experiences and new memories. This is often indicative of the type 4 especially with the 479 Tritype. The focus for all 4s is on what is missing and perceived to be valuable and out of reach.

The 479 is the 4 that hides their sadness because they fear people will reject them if they show it. Both 7 and 9 are happy characters on the Enneagram. This is why the 4 with the 479 Tritype is considered the happy, positive 4. 

One social 479 reported, “People like me because I am deep, fun, soft, accepting and gentle. I often have ugly emotions and hateful thoughts but I am afraid if I share them I will no longer be thought of as the special person that is so ‘evolved, kind and spiritual’, So, I suffer in silence.”

Neverland 479
You could see Michael’s 7 amplifying the 4’s desire for fantasy. His approach to music was always innovative and changing. His love of the unusual could be seen in his Neverland Ranch in Santa Barbara. Neverland was the epitome of the 479 love of fantasy and idealism. Walt Disney, shared the same Tritype only with 7 in the lead. As the 749, he created Disneyland based on the same love of fantasy, joy and idealism.  

The 479 is magical, mystical, unusual, creative, individualistic, gentle, harmonizing and enduring. The 9s need for okness combined with the 7s need for joy makes this 4 focus on more fantastical idealized circumstances. Michael, due to his wealth, could indulge his fantasies.  

Neverland, Michael’s property, was named for ‘Neverland’, the fantasy island in the story of Peter Pan, about a boy who never grows up. The 479 Tritype is very much like Peter Pan; they are forever young at heart with a childlike sense of wonder. Neverland was his home and his private amusement park. It contained a petting zoo, two railroads, a Ferris wheel, Carousel, Zipper, Octopus, Pirate Ship, Wave Swinger, Super Slide, roller coaster, bumper cars, and an amusement arcade. 

You could also see the touch of fantasy in his attire. He dressed like a character in a play or in a circus, and matched the look and feel of his amusement Park. His clothing was creative, stylized, theatrical and beautifully embellished with details. He often set fashion trends. His silver glove, born of aesthetic necessity to hide the lack of pigment on his hand due to vitiligo, (a disease that causes the loss of skin color in blotches) became a fashion statement. He was known for his trademark jackets.

The 9 can be seen in his gentleness, kindness, stubbornness and avoidance of conflict.  He also appeared to be very elusive and passive. We can see the 9 and 7 in the way he described himself to his friend, Jason Pfeiffer. Jason, in a Noise11 interview said that Michael thought his daughter Paris had picked up his traits of being stubborn, intelligent and mischievous as well as his lust for life, laughing and being the center of attention. We can see the 4 and 9 in his withdrawn and quiet side, which amplified his shyness and feelings of inhibition.

His social instinct could be seen in his focus on others. One example is the building of the amusement park and then bringing children to enjoy it. An amusement park is a social activity. It is a place where people come together to enjoy themselves. So he recreated the ideal childhood experience and shared it with others.  This is what he felt he missed as a child even though he came from a large family, he felt lonely.

He debuted with the Jackson 5 when he was at the tender age of 6. He went solo in 1971 and was successful but he truly came of age in 1982 when he was 24 with ‘Thriller’. ‘We are the World’ co-written with Lionel Ritchie followed in 1985 with USA for Africa. It is a social subtype song as it is about helping others and recognizing that we are all one big family. Bringing together artists from all over the world to raise money for those starving in Africa by singing “We are the World” is a great example of the high side of the social instinct.

Fun facts about Michael
Michael has two stars in Hollywood, one with the Jackson 5 and one for his solo career. He won 8 Grammy Awards in 1984 and was declared the most famous person in the world in 1997.

Prince 478
I see Prince as the sx 478 Tritype. The 478 is also a mystical and magical Tritype like the 479 as both share the 4 and 7. However, with 8 in this Tritype the 478 is driven by the raw, intense, authentic, edgy, innovating and the powerful. They are more grounded and less ethereal. This Tritype takes a deep dive into whatever captures their interest. They amass so much data on a subject that intrigues them that they become experts. The self-revealing humanitarian side shapes what they have learned into a message they then share with others. This Tritype of 4 is constantly changing, innovating and evolving.

The 7 in his tritype can be seen with his love of and use of color, diversity and a need to be positive. He is said to have had disdain for drama. He stated in the Larry King Interview that he was always focused on what is now and that he did not look back. He said he didn’t like labels but would call his music inspirational.  His said that he doesn’t wallow and moves on. 

This 4 is the most self-confident 4. The sexual 4 is focused on being inspirational. The 7 and 8 disapprove of the 4’s need to express their negative emotions. So they express their feelings through creative outlets. 

The 8 in his Tritype can be seen in his expressions and attitude.  When he fought for his artistic rights with Warner Brothers, he wrote ‘slave’ on his face in defiance of the record company. You can also see 8 in the way he toys with his interviewers. He had a sardonic sense of humor. In the Larry King interview he toys with Larry about a word that Larry made up. When Prince said that he didn’t look back, Larry said so you aren’t a‘remineser’? Prince asked Larry if that was a word. We can see Prince’s micro expressions and he displayed a true smile when Larry said he made it up like Prince had his symbol. 

Prince was extremely articulate in all of his interviews. 4s are usually very articulate. Michael was as well. We can see the 4 and 8 in his piercing intensity. He exaggerated his hair and make up.  He was flashy but refined and elegant at the same time. He was described as flamboyant, but with my experience of 4s, I learned that they hate that terms flamboyant and gaudy and prefer creative, intense, bold and colorful instead. So my guess is that he did not like that characterization of his look. We can see the 7 and 8 in his autonomy and dry sense of humor.

As one sexual 4 described his experience of being the sexual 478, “ You are the most powerful and transformative during your sexual or emotional peak moments, to the point when you unite the primal with the Divine.” This journey can be heard in Prince’s songs. He focuses on the romantic and the sexual, weaving them together with ecstasy, pain and suffering.

As a sexual 4, Prince did this with intimates or by selecting a charitable cause that touched him personally in some way. He was an anonymous charitable donor. 478s are more hidden and stealth on one hand and bold and assertive on the other. The 478 does not need as much validation as the other 4s as they feel more self-possessed due to the 8 in the Tritype.  They can still be shy and inhibited but they do not have as much self-doubt and shine once they feel more at ease.

478s are often creative with an eye for design as this Tritype has the creative type in each center. Everything Prince did had his signature look and a very personal touch. He had a passion for purple and was called the ‘Purple One’ and his fans were called the Purple Army. He designed his symbol that represented his emancipation from his limiting Warner contracts. He designed his Valentine’s Day china for his February 14th wedding to Mayte.  The Lenox china plates had piano keys around the edge of the plate with a gilt gold edge along with his insignia, his symbol for Prince united with an M in the middle for his beloved Mayte.

The sexual instinct can also be heard in his songs. His lyrics were very intimate, sexual and deeply personal. In ‘Purple Rain’ he delivered a message of pain and loss that had universal appeal. Prince’s songs and lyrics were mostly about the dynamic between lovers. The lyrics in ‘When Doves Cry’ are about the intimacy of the kiss and an ensuing lover’s quarrel. In the song he is trying to understand why he is left standing alone. It is raw and vulnerable. This is another hallmark of the 4 as 4s repetitively over-analyze their emotions to make sense of their pain and give meaning to their suffering.

His 478 could be seen in the look and feel of his attire.  This Tritype loves the pirate look, leather and lace, creative innovation, adornment, opulent beautiful fabrics and edgy elegance. He had a personal style that was individualistic and enduring. It combined a unique presentation of his trademark purple with a touch of seduction, subtle sexiness and mystery.

Prince wrote his first song when he was 7.  He began performing in a nightclub in Minneapolis and signed his first contract for a demo at 17. Stevie Wonder, who could play 8 instruments, inspired Prince. So young Prince made a name for himself by being able to play 27 instruments. In 1978 he landed a recording contract at the age of 18.  He came of age in 1984 with his movie ‘Purple Rain’ and album of the same name. He won an academy award for best original song score in 1985 at the age of 27. He was insanely prolific and played all 27 instruments on his debut record, For Y

A little more on Prince
Friends of Prince have reported that he was very compassionate. They remarked that they didn’t hear from him when they were doing really well but he watched the news and if they or someone else had a bad day and something was going wrong, he knew it and called the person in distress. Van said that if you were down on your luck Prince called.

He rehearsed 150 songs so he could play what he felt like.
He loved performing and jamming and often played 3 gigs in a night. True, creative genius that never stopped changing…
Writer, singer, dancer, played all instruments, conductor, producer, actor.

When Prince was on the Arsenio Hall Show and appeared on most of the one-hour late-night program, his aura was perforated even more cleanly. The show began with an interview between Prince and Arsenio Hall.  Arsenio joked more than once that he might have to edit certain parts out, but Prince surprised many with this playfulness in the Q&A. Prince showed his humor and answered all the questions he was asked. This is the side of Prince his friends all knew.
Arsenio Prince

4s and Meaning
As 4s, Michael and Prince was always seem to focus on what the music meant to them. Both Michael Jackson and Prince had painful childhoods. Both had suffered loss. Both had witnessed and experienced harsh discipline at the hands of their fathers. Both loved their mothers. Having said that, I would suggest that as a social 4, Michael played the roles of the characters on his albums such as the anti-establishment, angry man he portrayed in ‘Thriller.’ And as a sexual 4, Prince played himself such as the role of the shy, caring, deep, introspective, uncompromising, self-absorbed and a little cruel, ‘up and coming’ musical artist he played in ‘Purple Rain’.

Both men were amazing examples of the 4 with 7 in the Tritype. They tried to focus on the positive but expressed their pain through their music. They both loved beauty and adornment, and designed clothing with embellished details. They were both sensitive and inhibited introverts but they were innovative, magical and inspiring. They were dynamic, creative and individualistic trendsetters. They were legends in their own time and their music will live on. They both have left deep and lasting imprints.