- The Enneagram Temperaments


Understanding The System

Enneatemps helps us to connect our Temperaments as well as personality to our decision making processes. Often Enneagram is seen to describe “the differences between the types”. With Enneatemps, Mr. Naderi has changed that and introduced for the first time in Enneagram history:

“The similarities of the types”

Enneatemps has been published in Enneagram Monthly 176 (EM 176.pdf), CA, USA and can be coached in Hong Kong and Germany. 


You have certainly heard about The Four Temperaments, being one of the oldest personality typing systems on our planet. They are: Phlegmatic, Choleric, Sanguine and Melancholic types, which were first introduced by Greek philosopher, Hippokrates, 400 BC (said to be taken from Egyptians) and later developed by Galenius, (Galen), also a Greek philosopher, 200 A.D.

This typing system is still taught across Europe in High schools as a basic form of psychology, and is among others, one of the most solid tools of personality typing ever existed. 

The Four Temperaments’ were first found to match human’s psyche with medicine and diseases. Later on, the psychological, or better to say, the typological part, was developed.

The Four Temperaments originate from the Qualities of ‘hot / cold’, and, ‘wet / dry’ phenomena, influencing the so called ‘Four Juices’ in our bodies:

Greeks used to call this system ‘Micro Cosmos’, which is inside of our body, as compared to ‘Macro Cosmos’, which is the world itself, comprising Air, Fire, Earth and Water; and yet relating to Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.

Greeks described The Four Temperaments, with their body related organs and juices as the following:

Within this research, I have focused on the phenomena of the ‘temperature’ (hot / cold) and the ‘humidity’ (dry /wetness) of each temperament, finding out, that based on the position of each corner of the matrix in Micro Cosmos, specific psychological qualities appear, which are as following:

‘Hot’, means, to be able to make fast decisions, and meet choices quickly. The ability to crystallize our thoughts and bring them into one focal point - we can also call it over-determination

‘Dry’, means inner search for essential content within a context. It originates from the element ‘soil’ (Earth) and is related to heaviness, rocky and solid qualities. We can also call it the desire to include: ‘All & Everything’. Searching Milestone answers.

‘Cold’, means being slow and eventually ‘weak’ for decision making, or the lack of ability to make quick decisions, or finding choices, it has the opposite qualities of ‘hot’ - here we can also call it under-determination

‘Wet’, being the opposite of ‘dry’, means the lack of the need, to be in search for essential content, as water always flows away, and things are therefore ever-changing. Why bother to hold on one ‘heavy’ topic, as ‘dry’ mentality would do so, instead, search for varying answers. A kind of ‘lightness’ occurs.  Their answers to a question include the following concept: ‘Nothing could ever be delivered as a final answer’. ‘Milestone’-Answers are not that important.

The Birth of Enneatemps

As a hypothesis, I have drafted the following correlation, between The Four Temperaments, and the Enneagram types, which are shown in Figure 3.

What is important here, is not, whether the exact definition of The Four Temperaments, mentioned in the wide literature, is a good fit to the definitions, we already know from Enneagram types, but what is crucial, and is additional to the current understanding of Enneagram, is the that the production of the 4 juices and therefore the accruement of the 4 temperaments, their fit into the Macro Cosmos, and the ‘hot / cold’, ‘wet / dry’ - behavior of the types, give us a new understanding of the enneagram types by itself.

In other words, Enneagram types can be distinguished by the speed of their decision making process and the search for essential content.

By merging The Four Temperaments into 9 types, the Enneatemps are born.

Being originated from the Enneagram, it is fair to call this concept as, Enneatemps, which means, 9 Temperaments, which is first evident for 7 types represented.

The Enneagram types 3 and 6, are discussed in part III. We would call the temperament of these two Types as The Fifth Temperament. 

This system, is a system, like Enneagram itself. It is a description, where the types belong into an easier understandable and more transparent system, using terms and tools, which are applicable, in our daily life, as they are based on the 4 elements of our planet, as it has been used for centuries.

In the above diagram, you can see, that for the first time, Enneagram types relate to each other, in pairs, and the numeric sum, makes always 9! In addition, the ‘pairs’ are always from left, and right side of the Enneagram, except for the type nine which comes single.  We can say, that the type nine is related to ‘itself’ or to ‘all’.  According to Claudio Naranjo’s book, “Enneagram Type Structures”, the sides of enneagram, represent feminine (right), and masculine, (left) part of the Enneagram. These are real ‘pairs’ !

Integration / Disintegration of Enneatemps- Testing the System:

I wanted to see, whether this system works as a whole. If so, it had to include, the very basics of Enneagram regularities, such as integration and disintegration. As you can see below, it does!

The illustration below shows, that the Enneatemps, not only works within the concept of integration and disintegration, but it also tells us what happens, once a type integrates or disintegrates:

As a result, Types change their ‘Micro Cosmos’ qualities, during the integration and disintegration.

4s and 5s, move towards1s and 8s ‘area’  According to the above mapping, they basically accept the, ‘warmth’, instead of remaining at the cold area, where the weak decision making area is pre-dominant. By doing that, they make themselves, to be able to meet decisions faster or in better terms, find at least one choice to be met. This is for type 4s and 5s of enneagram of enormous shift.

At the same time,  they keep their ‘dryness’, which is their inner search for essential content. Of course for Fours, this content is related to identity, which is anyhow very essential related topic; for Fives it is based on facts and knowledge.

During the disintegration, they fall into the opposite side, hot and wet, the abyss for them, and as we know from 4s and 5s of enneagram, that loosing that essential content, which is ‘all they have’, is live threatening. They basically become something, that is too much for them, quick decision makers (which is good!) but, lost in a world, of no hold. In other words, they need many quick and smaller ‘holds’ to be built on, rather than a ‘no hold’ - situation. in part III, we will try to make the virtues and Holy Ideas easier to understand with Enneatemps.

4s and 5s also change two qualities at the same time, which is from cold to hot, and from dry to wet, probably a more complicated process than the one-quality-change process, as we can see in1s and 8s e.g.

Further on the integration, 1s and 8s, integrate to the area of type 7s and 2s, and this is for the choleric, hot and dry types, a quality of becoming, more ‘softened’, which brings along, less rigidity. It is obvious that healthy 1s and 8s are less rigid.

They disintegrate, while holding to their essential content, but becoming indecisive, means going towards cold area. I picture it as Autumn, would not be a good season for them, but Spring, which shows us its fresh change.

And finally, 7s and 2s, integrate into the opposite side, really an unknown realm to them, where they are asked, to be slower in their decisions and seeking for relative ‘heaviness’ within the context. Do you believe that getting slower for 7s and 2s would bring them ‘up’ in their health?

Disintegration would be for them, trying to get ‘dryer’, which means loosing their ever-changing flexibility. Then they will find more quality in things, which in turn, could be more essential content seeking and that is good for them. But, without the slow characteristics, which they additionally need to adapt, they become rigid, eight-like choleric types, as we know it from unhealthy Twos, e.g.

This system was also tested with Hornevians and Harmonics, which gave similar positive results.

Where to use Enneatemps?

After we have seen the validity of the Enneatemps, through the integration and disintegration concept, now we can use it in the following areas:

while typing oneself and others, Enneatemps could be an additional tool, to see and understand, how types seek content and how quick they meet choices. More on this on my article under Downloads.

Another very useful way to apply Enneatemps is for corporations and teams, as enneagram itself, might be a bit too complicated for staff and teams, on a daily based usage. 

A useful tool, for therapists and coaches, as they can give the direction of integration to their clients and patients, with a very simple concept, that every one can understand, and the clients themselves can define the road to go.

More applications see the article under Downloads.


Therefore, it is evident that the

Types Two and Seven, and Ones and Eights, share a common trait: quickness of decision making, (over-determined) while

the Type Fours and Fives, together with Type Nines, share a slower decision making (under-determined).

The Type Fours and Fives and Type Ones and Eights, however, share an essential content seeking, and the

Type Twos and Sevens, and Type Nine, share an ‘ever-changing’ - ‘fluid’ content as an answer.

That means, that the Type Ones and Eights, and the Type Fours and Fives, both would tend to hang on to emotions like anger, and thus appear more serious and critical than the fun-loving Twos and Sevens, and the peaceful Nines.

However, Type Ones and Eights, would be characterised by quick expressions of anger, while Type Fours and Fives would build up anger slowly, silently, before exploding.

For Type 3 and 6 please refer to their own section.

A brief summary in the following table:

For deeper understanding, please click on the illustration below:

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Picture I

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Picture V

Picture III