My first three blogs on the topic of clutter as it might appear through Enneagram types got me so riled up I started giving things away like crazy. I packed up boxes of books and donated them. I started to give away small pieces of furniture that were unnecessary. So to bring myself into balance I took some time off from writing about clutter. I was in mental clutter chaos thinking about clutter. These blogs will do that to ya.
One person’s clutter is another person’s treasure trove, full of delightful and meaningful things. The featured photo in this blog is one of many collections of nature objects that I have in my home. There are bowls of shells, and crystals, and shamanic mesas with natural finds creating a ground of all the 7 directions (north, east, south, west, above, below and within) bringing magic and metaphor to my consciousness. I love having them around me. To me they help ground me, invite me to touch them and hold them, and bring me back to my essence and interconnectedness. To someone else this may all seem like excess and unnecessary clutter.
Remember, I invite you to read these and take note if, no matter your Enneagram core number, you can relate to it on some level. Or if this feels like shadow stuff to you, disowned and evoking judgment. As a #2 core type, it is my #4 energy that has most balanced me by freeing up my own desires and sense of awe and beauty and claiming those qualities in my space, fully. Many with strong #4 energy may collect art, family photos, costumes, crafts, unusual things and these collections bring comfort and pleasure. And a lot of them, is not too much!!! It may be as if our rich inner four-ness is embodied in the world outside of us. My 4-ish home is full of color and art, and quite a bit, my own creations. As a #2, allowing my #4 to lead in this, has let me not be ashamed of what I create. And it is abundant and nourishes and feeds me, making my #2 feel less deprived and needy. So thank you #4. Abundance of visual art and a cache of nature objects, feels to me like heaven, and just might feel like clutter to another.
As the concept of Clutter meets the Enneagram meets the Chinese Five Element Theory we can explore how #4 might have some excesses or deficiencies in the balance of holding on and letting go, which is the metal/Air element, the season of Autumn. This correlates with the organs of lung and large intestine. We breathe in what we need and breathe out what we don’t. We take in the nutritions we need and excrete what is superfluous. (If only that was true when I overeat!)
Also, as much as the moon and night sky may resonate with many #4’s, the contrasting sunny summer season, bursting with life, color, sounds, fragrances and awesomeness, ignites the Fire element. This element is associated with the heart. Also small intestine and tongue for taste. Think of a ripe piece of fruit or watermelon. Intense, juicy, and life infusing.
Sometimes #4 can hold onto feelings in excess and that can create an inner clutter in the heart; mental or emotional obsessing about what’s missing in self and others, rather than processing thoroughly and deeply and moving on. There can become an attachment to the drama, disappointment and stress, a beautiful and exquisitely painful medley of delicious overwhelming feelings. And the inner world, once again, may be reflected in the outer world. That is why creating an intentional ritual or making art even out of a pile of rocks and sticks can transmute the cluttered feelings into something alluring or even uniquely ugly, outside of self.
I will tell you this, whatever form clutter takes for the four energy, it will be stimulating and entertaining, engaging and distinctly unrepeatable.
For more understanding of the Five Elements and your own inner world, I invite you to buy my new book, My Musings, a guided journal, not Enneagram related. And if you already have begun interacting with the book, it would mean a lot if you would leave a review. In gratitude, Ruthie