Kinkajou: So what are the Enneagram Types?
Erasmus: They are numbered one to nine. I’ll briefly summarize what I believe to be some of their characteristics in the Ennegenes (enneagram gene) model of the enneagram eight. Now remember, other authors may have a slightly different point of view, because my view is based on what I believe the underlying genetics of the people involved are. If you have a particular gene, you will act in a way that a particular gene will program for you.
Kinkajou: You've told me a little about this before. The traditional model of the eight is perhaps a little insulting.
Erasmus: Eight: “Eights” will rush in where angels fear to tread: bulldozers. It’s my way or the highway. The rest of you are bloody idiots. Still “eights” are capable of caring greatly for people under their wings and will protect their loved ones to the bitter end. Often when you get in trouble and even your own mother doesn’t love you anymore, your only remaining friend may well be an “eight”. Many of the other enneagram types have decided long since to cut their losses.
“Eights” are workhorses. They see. They want. They decide and they do. They are drawn to the best and to be the best. They want to do best. There is nothing shy or coquettish about an “eight”. You can’t tell an “eight” anything, they don’t already know. Ideas do eventually seep in, but then the “eight” claims them as their own.
For women: flirty, smiling, forward and assertive.
Eights do it if they want to: and the fun is the biggest of them all.
Never forget that enneagram eights are one of the authors of the first civilisations on the planet. In short to be the best and the biggest can indeed be a drive to civilisation. The civilisation of the Indus Valley (likely to be enneagram ones) never quite achieved the pinnacle that the Egyptian enneagram eight civilisation on the Nile achieved. Perhaps however it is not the desire to be the best and the biggest that drove the development of civilisation. Perhaps it is just the ability to decide. It doesn’t matter what you do. If you just go ahead and do it, it will happen. Enneagram eights outdo enneagram ones in the doing, all the time.
Another Eight civilisation.
In the genetic theory of enneagrams “eights” are people who possess multiple slow histamine genes. (These genes can affect either the brain receptors or brain pathways). This leads to a very distinctive behaviour pattern, dictated by the presence of these genes. “Eights” do not have any problems deciding or in making a choice. An enneagram eight in full flight may sound like a repository of wisdom and knowledge, when in fact they have no more understanding of an issue than you yourself may possess. What is different about the eight is the conviction with which they approach what knowledge or understanding they do have of an issue. It takes a while for many of us to develop enough expertise to face off against an eight and their tightly held convictions.
Don't Face off against an Eight: Count Dooku
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The problem with the eight genes mix is that while making decisions is easy, reconsidering decisions is not. The brain receptors and pathways flip to one state, but it is difficult to create enough input to make them flip out of that state.
Eights like the Biggest and the Best
Perhaps the world’s best-known eight is Henry VIII. I know what I want and I’m going to get it. Hang the consequences. Hang the difficulties. It’s going to happen. And as a tribute to Henry VIII, it did.
Another famous Eight- Vincent Freeman--
"I can be greater than my genetics if I have the will".
The slow histamine genes make state change easy – giving an easy decision. The slow histamine gene presents a low repertoire of choices, making choices easy. But once a decision is made, action follows soon after and to a very high level of intensity. Contrast the situation as may exist in an enneagram one civilisation. The perfectionistic state may actually hinder progress. For an enneagram eight or an enneagram seven civilisation, it is the sum of the achievements, not their tightness or perfection which speeds the development of culture, technology and civilisation.
The "Eight" of the bird world.
Many traditional theorists describe eights as developing in the context of a combative childhood where the strong were respected and the weak were not. Because eights expected to be taken advantage of, eights learned to protect themselves. Eights are described as fighting for control. They seek to take charge and to exert their power over others. In the traditional enneagram eights are described as “bosses”. Eights are described as seeking open expression of belief and feelings. They dislike people who do not display their true intentions openly.
Erasmus: Again what bullshit.
Anybody who has ever met an enneagram eight child realises that the enneagram eight character exists from birth. Seeing a two-year-old with their hands on their hips and facing up to an adult with conviction tells you very quickly that this is not something they have learnt. They do it because that is who they are and that is what they do. And they had been like this since the day they were born.
Are we to believe that everyone who has a bit of trouble in their childhood will become an eight? As a child everyone is bigger and stronger than you. I think almost everyone would have seen examples where strong personalities are respected, whereas weak personalities are prone to fail and to not be accepted or respected. So why aren’t these people all eights? If we have seen someone succeed with eight behaviour, why don’t we all just copy it? It is because we cannot. It is not in the genes.
Doing it Bigger and best of all: the Eight: the Boss
Eights are described as seeking to take charge. But this is probably not true. Decisions are easy and action follows. So they are naturally at the forefront. Human nature then ensures that others follow. The more people follow, then the more others are convinced to follow as well. The enneagram eight becomes the default leader.
Eight is associated with power : official or not
The true situation is likely to be that they live their life in “digital” based on their strong” low- histamine” “deciding” genes. There are no shades of belief and feelings. They are either positive or negative. If an eight has any knowledge, an eight will have belief in themselves and no belief in others. This leads them to assume they have much more capability than many other enneagram types. It is not so much that their genes push them to be in charge, as that their belief in themselves makes them downgrade the capabilities of others. If you know what you are doing, (and your genes tell you that you know it all), you should be in charge of doing it.
Eights are human beings with simple basic drives based on the genes they have inherited. Their experiences in life may well alter how they behave, but it is their genes that tell them that they “know “and that they will decide. Eights are one of the power enneagram personality types. They live their lives as they see it and not in a construct of imagination within their head.
I think most Sci Fi monsters have "Eight" personalities.
Enneagram eights other personality type that most other enneagram personalities love to hate. But there are good and bad people within any enneagram type. Yes enneagram eights are often in conflict with other personality types. But this is often because other enneagram types with fast histamine genes do not understand how the eight mind works. The fast histamine gene blesses its owner with a faster perception of a larger range of options in any circumstance. They can appreciate how actions affect other people’s behaviour. What they have some difficulty understanding is how the enneagram eight can decide on a single course of action and can then proceed full speed ahead, seemingly unappreciative of their effect on other people. The answer to this quandary is very simple. The slow histamine gene confers on its owners and immunity from needing to consider a plethora of actions and consequences before making a decision. See the situation. Sum it up quickly. Act. Without action there can be no success. And with guaranteed action, at least success is a possibility.
The situation is completely at loggerheads with the situation in the nine. Nines can see and appreciate a plethora of possibilities and the effect of the actions on others. They just don’t have the drive to do and to get involved. I think many of the native civilisations on earth, are based on enneagram nine genetics.
Kinkajou: All glory to the eight.
In the Daniel Boone tradition- John Boone on mars . Interestingly Daniel Boone took a very unpopular stance with his felloe colonists supporting the Indians when he realised the danger the western world (American colonists) were placing the Indians in : in spite of what they had done to him. When the chips are down, your only friend may be an Eight.
If "Eights" have got it, they love to flaunt it.