R.I.P. Don Richard Riso

Don Riso, author with Russ Hudson of one of the go-to Enneagram books on my shelf, Discovering Your Personality Type: the Essential Introduction to the Enneagram, died on August 30th.

I didn’t study with Riso, but I was present at a couple of workshops he and Russ Hudson presented at the IEA conferences I attended. He was always the perfect combination of informative, witty, and entertaining. I’ve devoured several of his books, but what I like best about Discovering Your Personality Type are the extremely detailed type profiles, to which I’ve referred over and over again. Those profiles exemplify the breadth and depth of the Enneagram of personality and clarify the distinctions between types. The other contribution I appreciate is his nine levels of development, which are outlined for each type in Discovering Your Personality Type. I have also also used and frequently recommended the RHETI (Riso Hudson Enneagram Type Indicator) to others.

I found Riso and Hudson’s descriptions of what I believe they originally referred to as sub-types to be spot on. And the name he assigned to my subtype, 8w7—Maverick—couldn’t fit me better.

When I first started learning about and working with the Enneagram, I was put off by most teachers’ insistence that type was primarily a result of nurture. That just didn’t make sense to me, nor did it ring true for me personally. Almost everyone has come around to seeing type as a result of nurture and nature, but my recollection is that Riso and Hudson did so sooner than some of the others.

Don Riso was a very intelligent, dedicated individual who contributed significantly to the body of knowledge those of us who work with the Enneagram now have access to. The Enneagram world will miss his lively spirit and his inquiring mind. I’m grateful for all that he shared with us.

Click here to check out The Enneagram Institute website.

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