The Enneagram of Discernment
The Way of Vocation, Wisdom, and Practice
Drew Moser, PhD
How does your personality type help and hinder your ability to make wise decisions?
We are too often rich in information and poor in wisdom. And when we encounter life’s decisions, big and small, we engage the information available through the lens of our personality.
The Enneagram of Discernment: The Way of Vocation, Wisdom, and Practice breaks new ground in the enneagram field, introducing Dr. Drew Moser’s innovative approach to exploring the enneagram to discover calling, cultivate wisdom, and develop habits that help you make wise decisions, whether they be important or mundane. This is not your ordinary enneagram book.
Weaving theology, spirituality, neuroscience, and psychology, Dr. Moser introduces you to The Way of Discernment: a journey of nine key questions each of us must consider when faced with a decision. Each of these nine questions are grouped into three triads: The Vocation Triad, The Wisdom Triad, and The Practice Triad.
This is an enneagram resource for anyone looking for help in making better decisions. Whether you’re new to the enneagram, or have been working with the enneagram for many years, The Enneagram of Discernment is an essential resource.
Advance Praise for
The Enneagram of Discernment
"Drew writes on the enneagram with both clarity and conviction, not as a mere spectator gleaning from the sidelines, but a journeyman who has traveled the road thoroughly and brought back wisdom to share. I highly recommend this book to the enneagram student."
—AJ Sherrill, lead pastor, Mars Hill Bible Church, author, The Enneagram for Spiritual Formation
"Drew resists the faddish enneagram-talk that tells people who they are, instead inviting each of us on a journey of discernment, exploring every obstacle to becoming our true selves, uncovering our unlived lives, and discovering our hidden vocation. This immensely practical gift holds the possibility of transformation, for yourself and for a hungry and hurting world. Savor it!"
—Dr. Chuck DeGroat, author, When Narcissism Comes to Church; Professor of Pastoral Care and Christian Spirituality at Western Theological Seminary; therapist, spiritual director
"In this work, Drew has curated a wonderful tour for how the enneagram can helpfully guide us all to deeper exploration of vocation, calling, and life passion. Drew’s writing style—like his teaching style—is both accessible and deep. New and longtime students of the enneagram will find gifts of wisdom in Drew’s pages."
—Hunter Mobley, enneagram teacher with Suzanne and Joe Stabile’s Micah Center in Dallas, Texas; Nashville-based pastor and attorney; author, Forty Days on Being a Two
"This is a brilliant book! If you want to know and experience the life you desire to live, The Enneagram of Discernment delivers a map to get from here to there. You can read this book all at once but take your time. Dr. Drew's work with college students, along with his keen intellect, palpable empathy, and instinctual wisdom, serves as a GPS for young and old alike. Savor the landscape. Search your inner terrain, the heights, depths, and breadth of your soul with Drew as a faithful guide to help you discover more of the magnificent life you are meant to live."
—Rev. Clare Loughrige, co-author, Spiritual Rhythms of the Enneagram; pastor at Crossroads Church (Marshall, MI); spiritual director
"Drew does a remarkable job of establishing separation between type and person while also writing about each type in such a way that we are all sure to be deeply seen. I appreciated the way he spoke of my dominant type (Seven) from a deep and nuanced perspective. In addition, he was able to offer tangible mindset shifts for working with the enneagram that take the information from understanding into application. I'm excited for you to start or continue your enneagram journey with The Enneagram of Discernment in your tool belt."
—Sarajane Case, founder, @enneagramandcoffee; author, The Honest Enneagram
"The Enneagram of Discernment is an essential resource in the journey of self-discovery. Dr. Moser has accomplished what few others have in his ability to detail the extensive landscape of our human experience in a beautifully complex yet practically uncomplicated manner. His deft capacity to effectively guide each of us as we navigate past the shallowness of personality typing into the depths of true personal exploration can not be understated. This resource is a life-giving map for all of us seeking wisdom via practical applications in our efforts to discover our unique purpose."
—Dr. Jerome D. Lubbe, author, The Brain-Based Enneagram: You are Not a Number
"Drew invites us to step past the shallow earth of simple self-awareness into the wider world of wholeness. This book is more than a map to flourishing. It’s an excavation of the soul. Let Drew’s kind, practical wisdom guide you to the gift of coming home to who you really are."
—KJ Ramsey, licensed professional counselor; author, This Too Shall Last: Finding Grace When Suffering Lingers
"On the surface, 'discernment' is about answering the occasional pressing question: 'What should I do?' However, with profound depth, clarity, and insight, The Enneagram of Discernment shows us how cultivating discernment is more essentially about braving with tenderness and vulnerability the sacred space of our authentic selfhood—and doing this as a devoted practice each and every day of our 'wild and precious' lives. If you are feeling lost, uncertain, or confused, Dr. Moser will help direct you to the trailhead of your own identity and gently offer you a map home."
—Rev. Nhiên Vương, founder, Evolving Enneagram; International Enneagram Association accredited professional; ordained interspiritual minister
"The Enneagram of Discernment has quickly become one of the top resources we recommend for people wanting to use the ancient wisdom of the enneagram for its intentioned purpose of liberation. Drew's unique take on cultivating discernment through the enneagram provides a much-needed accessibility to an intimidating subject. This book not only provides a map but also the wisdom and guidance from the heart of a teacher who kindly and thoughtfully leads you each step of the way on the journey of finding your identity, purpose, and direction. We are thankful for Drew's gift to the conversation and believe you will be as well."
—Rebekah TenHaken, co-founder and Director of Content and Collaboration for Enneagram Magazine
"With the acumen of a scholar, the heart of a servant-leader, and the wisdom of a sage, Drew Moser has created a landmark book. The Enneagram of Discernment is deeply rooted in tradition while simultaneously weaving fresh, illuminating insights on identity, vocation, wisdom, and practice. Whether you're a seasoned student of the enneagram or just being introduced to this ancient tool for holistic transformation, there is no better companion for deepening your journey into the true self. This book is sure to stand the test of time and belongs on the shelf alongside the great contemporary enneagram teacher."
—Ryan Kuja, writer, spiritual director, & author, From the Inside Out: Reimagining Mission, Recreating the World
"When it comes to exploring our vocation—or helping others do the same – many leaders feel ill-equipped. We’re desperate for resources that go beyond navel-gazing, pop-psychologizing, or slapping a spiritual shellac on standard decision-making advice. The Enneagram of Discernment does none of this. Instead, it invites us to look inward in a new way—to take a trip to the center of ourselves, not only to better our understanding, but ultimately to see the Imago Dei. For those who want to apply the ancient enneagram tool to our output in today’s world, Drew Moser is a humble, encouraging, and incredibly insightful guide. This book has the power to transform anyone who is willing to embark on the discernment journey!"
—Erica Young Reitz, author, After College; founder and Principal, After College Transition
"If you are new to the enneagram or an enneagram expert, this book will speak to you. Drew Moser has written an inspired book! Drew’s lifelong passion for helping young people discern their pathway in life has been transformed into a guide for us all. Drew clearly and skillfully uses the fundamental tenets of the enneagram to help us see and uncover our authentic selves. This allows us to listen and respond to the wisdom of a deeper calling. Challenging and meaningful questions and exercises at the end of chapters help us find a felt sense of what we are discovering and takes this wonderful information from head knowing to a full body, heart and head understanding. Like Drew, I have a literal room full of books on the enneagram. I have multiple copies of my favorite books and those I find most helpful, to lend to clients, students and friends. Rest assured there will be multiple copies of The Enneagram of Discernment in my library!"
—Nan Henson, International Enneagram Association Accredited Professional, Riso-Hudson Certified Teacher & Authorized Workshop Leader; founding board member of IEA Georgia; owner, Enneagram Atlanta
"Drew Moser’s The Enneagram of Discernment is beautifully written, powerfully engaging, and rich in its depth! At a time when 'thrown together' enneagram books are flooding the marketplace, Drew Moser has come forth with a solid and authentic piece of work—a genuine contribution to the enneagram field. The Enneagram of Discernment offers a framework for working with the enneagram that keeps the true purpose of the enneagram alive throughout the book by staying true to a focus on using the enneagram for 'doing the Work' as opposed to a focus on the enneagram itself. The Type Chapters present a fresh view of each enneagram type from an 'inside out' perspective —describing more the experience of each Type than the typical 'outside in' descriptions of characteristics and behaviors. The exercises and practices offered throughout the book are purposeful and practical invitations for inquiry, one of the most effective tools for real and lasting personal and spiritual growth. I highly recommend this book to those new to the enneagram as well as to seasoned enneagram journeyers. Thank you, Drew, for this enneagram gem!"
—Lynda Roberts, Riso-Hudson certified enneagram teacher, past president, International Enneagram Association, Accredited Professional, www. enneagramhorizons.com
"I have long considered my work with students at Christian colleges as 'standing at the crossroads' with them as they discern their futures, settle important questions about who they are and determine the purpose for their lives. In this volume, Drew Moser has developed an elegant and useful articulation of insights from the enneagram that will help me guide students in these crucible moments of their growth. For the reader who is new to the enneagram, Drew points out basic insights. For the seasoned pilgrim, he extracts and weaves together the concepts of vocation, wisdom and practice, thus helping any reader of any enneagram type to develop discernment. This is a book to which I will return often, for myself and as a recommended resource for students, colleagues, and leaders."
—Dr. Edee M. Schulze, Vice President for Student Life at Westmont College (CA)
"As the enneagram has grown in popularity, it has unfortunately often been treated as a static personality profile, leaving unaccessed its greatest gifts for our evolution. But Drew’s book is one of the rare ones that grasps and shares the dynamic power of this tool for our transformation as we confront the most challenging questions of vocation and discernment. With Drew’s expert guidance, we can use the enneagram to pursue our best work and our truest lives."
—Jason Adam Miller, founder and Lead Pastor, South Bend City Church (IN)
"This book beautifully unpacks how better understanding ourselves through the enneagram can lead us on a path of discernment. The nine questions serve as practical tools that nurture wisdom in making good life decisions."
—Dr. Kris Hansen-Kieffer, Vice Provost for Student Success and Engagement at Messiah College (PA)
“This is not just another enneagram book, like many of them out there, regurgitating what was written in the first books. Drew’s approach is unique in its depth and practicality, giving readers a fresh approach to understanding the 'why' of type and the 'how' of practicing loosening our addictive patterning to reclaim our innate capacity for wisdom needed to flourish where we are.”
—Seth Abram, Nashville-based singer/songwriter, co-host, Fathoms | An Enneagram Podcast; enneagram writer/teacher, @integratedenneagram
"Dr. Drew Moser is a national leader in defining the struggles that the 20-something generation is going through and moreover, how to overcome those struggles. His new book on the enneagram is his best work helping people understand their type and how to best use knowledge of that type to live abundantly. As someone in his 50s, I learned a lot from Moser’s brilliant work on the enneagram. Thus, I trust that people of all ages will learn and grow from reading this fantastic title. Moser notes that in a world of beauty, we often listen to our earbuds and social media. He astutely asks, 'What are we tuning out?' I encourage you to tune in to Moser’s book and learn about how to live a more authentic life through discernment and hearing the voice of God."
—Dr. John D. Foubert, dean and professor, College of Education, Union University (TN)
"Knowing and being able to integrate the enneagram’s wisdom with my journey of discernment over the past two years was a gift just as Drew Moser describes it to be: to decide and live from the wholeness of the claim 'This is who I am.’ That others can experience that integration because of Drew’s work here is a similar gift! The enneagram is meant for so much more than trendy Facebook posts and Instagram pics. With The Enneagram of Discernment, we are taken into the ‘so much more’ in a rich, comprehensive, yet exceedingly clear and helpful way. Would you expect anything less from a college professor who’s spent his years walking alongside young adults in the pursuit of their vocation? No doubt I will recommend this work again and again to those I serve of all ages."
—Dr. David A. Bell, Executive Director of Circle City Fellows (Indianapolis, IN); founder of Enneagram Insight
"Understanding the way forward involves a willingness to experience self-awareness and a desire for transformation. The Enneagram of Discernment offers an invitation for both of these to take place through wisdom and practice. The integration of theory and reflection are intertwined in a thorough way through this insightful resource. Drew emulates a life of discernment through his own evolution of transformation."
—Dr. Julia Hurlow, author, Transcendence at the Table; Director of Discipleship, Taylor University (IN)
"Discernment is one of those things that we all think we have finally obtained at one point in our lives. When in reality, we soon realize that this difficult & precarious balancing act, only dares us to continue confronting the ways in which we see, perceive and believe. Drew has skillfully and efficiently conveyed the deep wisdom of the enneagram in which, every fathom you descend you feel more and more at home in your body, soul, & mind. Drew has managed to gracefully hold in tension, the complexities of you, while still giving you access to the practicality of this ancient system."
—Seth Creekmore, experiential enneagram teacher/musician; co-host, Fathoms | An Enneagram Podcast
"Each of us makes seemingly unimportant decisions every day and then every so often a monumental life decision must be made. This book harnesses the power of authentic self-discovery through the enneagram and provides an invitation into wisdom to discern life’s decisions. Dr. Drew Moser is a gifted educator whose words will adeptly guide readers into a deeper understanding and application of the enneagram."
—Dr. Amy VanDerWerf Carroll, Senior Consultant for Student Success at Credo
"The Enneagram of Discernment is an invitation to tend to your soul. While there's no shortage of resources on the enneagram, none marry story-telling, education, and reflective questions the way this book does so beautifully. Drew created a rare gift that we'll get to open over and over again."
—Manda Carpenter, Jesus-follower, foster care advocate, & author, Space: An Invitation to Create Sustainable Rhythms of Work, Play, and Rest