I typically read “consciousness”, “attention”, and awareness as interchangeable terms. In spiritual direction we’re learning to “pay attention”. We’re learning to see, feel, and listen. We’re learning to become aware of ones interior movements. We’re learning to discern God’s presence, (transformative) activity and invitations in our emotions, moods, feelings, relationships etc. In Ignatian terms, we’re learning to “find God in all things”.
The enneagram is an important tool, one that can be used in spiritual direction. There are few books that focus specifically on the ways in which spiritual direction, the enneagram, and ones journey toward God can be woven together in helpful ways.
One such book is The Enneagram and Spiritual Direction: Nine paths to spiritual guidance by James Empereur. S.J. I’ve yet to secure a copy of read it, but it’s on my list when finances allow.
Spirituality and Practice have a brief online review, here. Has any one read it? Would you recommend it? Why?
Here are a couple of excerpts that I found online:
“…Preliminary to much spiritual growth is the ability to know how and when the attention shifts among thought, memory, and planning and among fantasy, feeling, and sensation; also necessary is the knowledge of how to visit the other spaces on the enneagram besides one's own to experience other styles of attention. (12)
…I see healthy and holy persons as those who have integrated their own space [Enneagram Type] into their lives by moving to both stress and security spaces, by picking up there whatever is useful for their growth at any moment of their personal journey, by drawing strength from both wings, by depending on the need at hand, as well as by being able to visit all the spaces on the enneagram as required or desired at any moment of their lives. Thus, healthy persons are those who move around the enneagram at choice. They always remain firmly based in their own space [type], where their principal energy is found. But they are not limited in their journey to leaning on one or both of their wings, nor are they required to move in one or other direction such as the 1-4-2-8-5-7 internal structure. Rather they can visit all the spaces at different times depending on their changing circumstances. (20)…”
~ James Empereur. S.J.