As we approach the release of my new book Know Justice Know Peace: A Transformative Journey of Social Justice, Anti-Racism, and Healing through the Power of the Enneagram, I would like to offer a glimpse into the actual chapters. For the next 3 weeks, we will look at each of the 3 Centers of Intelligence within the Enneagram.
This week I invite you to explore the Body Center with me. Here is a sample of Chapter 5 The Defenders - Body Center: 8-9-1:
The Body Center, or Instinctive Triad, is home to Points Eight, Nine, and One. These three energies have a gut wisdom, a feeling in their bodies during times of conflict, chaos, or just in their daily lives. This group is centered around action, affecting the world or their environments in order to avoid being affected by it, and expressing their anger in different ways. Many people who identify with the Body Center Points (Eight-Nine-One) have a distinct experience with the emotion of anger or rage. All humans experience anger; this is an undeniable fact. However, for Eight-Nine-Ones, anger is the catalyst for many of their patterns of behavior.
During times of pain and suffering, either internally or externally, Eight- Nine-Ones experience a visceral response that often transforms into bodily action and instinctual external rage. This pattern consequently connects Eight-Nine-Ones to action and results more so than the other centers. The Body Center is concerned with creating boundaries for themselves in order to resist being affected by external factors. The boundaries created are dependent on how the Point in question is attempting to protect themselves, fulfill the core motivation, and avoid the basic fear.
We call the Body Center the Defenders, because that is exactly what they do—defend against threats to themselves as well as to others. Each Point defends in its own way, which we dive into in each section, but they all take action based on what they feel in their bodies. The instinctual motivation to protect or to defend human survival resides within the Body Center. When operating from a healthy space, Eight-Nine-Ones are fierce defenders of justice, equity, and fairness and will lead with kindness, courage, and honor. They are the center that gets things done, because they are wired to take action more readily than most.
On the other side, the action and anger residing in the Body Center can leave a considerable amount of destruction in its wake. When operating from an unhealthy space, Eight-Nine-Ones can be explosive and vengeful, judgmental and overreactive, and fall into a toxic pattern of defending for the wrong reasons. Many people within the Body Center experience a wall of anger and rage surrounding a particular unhealed or unexplored internal wound. This wall can be brought down by diving into the inner work necessary to move through the passion, fixation, and virtue and activate as an Ally, Advocate, or Love Warrior.
We all have access to the Body Center energy, and sometimes the anger we pick up from these Points can serve as a wake-up call or a catalyst for helping us land in our virtue. Not all anger needs to be destructive.
I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into Know Justice Know Peace: A Transformative Journey of Social Justice, Anti-Racism, and Healing through the Power of the Enneagram. Please join me next week as we look into Chapter 6 The Healers - Heart Center: 2-3-4