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  • Kathy Marsak

Sixes and the Wisdom of the Body

Sometimes a poem will point us to not just a better understanding of an Enneatype, but also to the points available as resources for a particular type, in this case the point of growth (or integration) for a Six. “My Brain and Heart Divorced”, by John Roedel, begins in the familiar internal voice of a Six…a vacillating and halting dialogue between one’s brain and heart arguing over whose fault “the state of my life” is.

But after much blaming and “yelling and crying” between the two, there is a change – a shift toward “my gut” which then begins to serve as “my unofficial therapist”. Here we can see the movement of an anxious Six toward their growth point of a healthy Nine, relaxed and harmonious. We can also see the movement from the head center where the focus of Type Six is on “the uncertain future”, to the intelligence of the instinctive (or body) center at Type Nine, feeling supported by and in touch with the wisdom of the body where “there is only now”.


All of us have a bit of Six in us, at times privileging the voice of our head center over the voices of our heart and body centers. Our goal here is to have an integrated experience of all our centers, where we are able to draw on the wisdom of all three. What is your growth point, and how might you use it as a resource? What center do you tend to underutilize, and how might you take more advantage of the wisdom it has to offer?



my brain and heart divorced

a decade ago

over who was to blame about how big of a mess I have become eventually, they couldn’t be in the same room with each other now my head and heart share custody of me I stay with my brain during the week and my heart gets me on weekends they never speak to one another

– instead, they give me the same note to pass to each other every week and their notes they send to one another always says the same thing: “This is all your fault” on Sundays my heart complains about how my head has let me down in the past and on Wednesday my head lists all of the times my heart has screwed things up for me in the future

they blame each other for the state of my life

there’s been a lot of yelling – and crying

so, lately, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my gut

who serves as my unofficial therapist

most nights, I sneak out of the window in my ribcage and slide down my spine and collapse on my gut’s plush leather chair that’s always open for me ~ and I just sit sit sit sit until the sun comes up last evening, my gut asked me if I was having a hard time being caught between my heart and my head I nodded I said I didn’t know if I could live with either of them anymore “my heart is always sad about something that happened yesterday while my head is always worried about something that may happen tomorrow,” I lamented

my gut squeezed my hand

“I just can’t live with my mistakes of the past or my anxiety about the future,” I sighed

my gut smiled and said: “in that case, you should go stay with your lungs for a while,”

I was confused – the look on my face gave it away “if you are exhausted about your heart’s obsession with the fixed past and your mind’s focus on the uncertain future your lungs are the perfect place for you

there is no yesterday in your lungs there is no tomorrow there either

there is only now there is only inhale there is only exhale there is only this moment

there is only breath

and in that breath you can rest while your heart and head work their relationship out.” this morning, while my brain was busy reading tea leaves and while my heart was staring at old photographs

I packed a little bag and walked to the door of my lungs

before I could even knock she opened the door with a smile and as a gust of air embraced me she said

“what took you so long?” ~ My Brain and Heart Divorced

byJohn Roedel

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