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Ramon Llull: First Father of the Enneagram Diagram of Personality

Updated on June 10, 2014

Ramon Llull and the First Enneagram

Ramon Llull was the first writer to use the terms and symbols associated with passions, vices, virtues and holy ideas and to place them around a nine pointed diagram surrounded by a circle
Ramon Llull was the first writer to use the terms and symbols associated with passions, vices, virtues and holy ideas and to place them around a nine pointed diagram surrounded by a circle

The First Enneagram drawing was created in 1307

In 1307, Llull published his Ars Brevis (Brief System).In this work, an Enneagram-like figure is drawn with nine points clearly presenting nine vices surrounded in a circle. The table below describes Llull’s nine vices and corresponding nine virtues and nine “Divine Dignities” (holy ideals).When translated into English, his nine vices are the common terms used in Enneagram studies for the passions or vices:Anger, Envy, Pride, Lust, Avarice, Gluttony, Sloth, Lying (deceit), and Inconstancy (faithlessness or lack of loyalty).

Translation of Ramon Llull's Terms

Ars Brevis
Ars Brevis

Llullian Vices, Virtues and Holy Ideals

These Lullian diagrams with a nine pointed star surrounded by a large circle with a large upright central triangle are associated with Nine fold vices, virtues and holy ideas closely correspond to the language used by Dr. Ichazo and his contemporaries to describe concepts in the Enneagram of Personality.As the science of psychology did not exist in Llull’s time, it would be unreasonable for us to expect Llull to describe personality types.However, Llull does describe vices, virtues and holy ideas in the terms of his day which we now closely associate with personality types.The term “inconstancy” is the only one of his nine terms that a modern reader would not easily recognize as being related to the Enneagram. The term describes a lack of faith or loyalty, which relates well to “The Loyalist” and the traditional Christian teaching that Faith banishes Fear.

Llullian Enneagram Figure B


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