Rhodes, S. (2017). The Fool’s Excellent Adventure

A Hero’s Journey Through the Enneagram & Tarot

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The Fool’s Excellent Adventure is the first book to explore the relationship between two great systems: the tarot and the enneagram. The tarot provides wonderful images that help us envision the nine enneagram personality types as larger-than-life archetypes that reveal our inner potential; the enneagram gives us a tool for exploring the tarot from the nine diverse perspectives. Combining the two helps us imagine the world as Joseph Campbell once did: a place full of magic, mystery, and treasures just waiting to be discovered!

Each of us begins our journey in life as a Fool. But what kind of Fool are we? The enneagram can help us figure that out. The tarot helps us realize that our “foolish” dreams can be tranformed into tangible realities; it also inspires us to see life as more of an adventure to be lived than a problem to be solved!

You don’t need to know the tarot or enneagram to use thisbook. It’s for anyone with an interest inthe tarot, the enneagram, or adventurous self-discovery. I tried to make it as story-like as possible, but at the same time to provide chapter endnotes and appendixes for more research-oriented readers (for details, see below.)

Additional topics

  • Discovering your enneagram type and how this can support your hero’s journey
  • Using the enneagram to enhance tarot meditation and divination
  • Enneagram-based tarot spreads
  • How the tarot supports a potential-oriented view of the enneagram types
  • Hermetic philosophy and how it animates the hero’s journey
  • Joseph Campbell and The Hero With 1000 Faces
  • Hajo Banzhaf”s Jungian tarot model of the hero’s journey
  • Expanding Banzhaf’s model to include the enneagram
  • The unique role of the Fool in the journey
  • How the tarot’s “zero” and the enneagram’s “zero” make them both quantum-based (paradoxical) systems
  • The relationship between the tarot, enneagram, and qabala
  • Linking the enneagram and qabala through sacred geometry
  • The emerging role of the enneagram in the Western Mystery Tradition
  • The Continental vs Golden Dawn’s tarot attributions on the qabalistic Tree of Life (and why this topic matter for linking the enneagram and tarot)

About the Author

Susan Rhodes is a cognitive psychologist (Ph.D., Univ. of Washington) with an ongoing research interest in individual differences, psycho-spiritual systems, and the nature of transformation. She is also amosaic and polymer clay artist fascinated by color, texture, andtransformational art. In 2000, she plunged into a deep study of the enneagram. In 2006, she became the staff reporter for the Enneagram Monthly, the onlycontinuously-published newspaper on enneagram topics since 1995. (The enneagram is a sacred geometrical construct that generates nine personality/temperament types, which are conventionally described as personality fixations. Susan turns that idea on its head by describing them as nine paths to transformation; this is the vision set forth in her three previous enneagram books: The Positive Enneagram, 2009; Archetypes of the Enneagram, 2010; and The Integral Enneagram, 2013).

Her current book, The Fool’s Excellent Adventure: A Hero’s Journey through the Enneagram & Tarot (2017), explores the relationship between the enneagram and tarot, a transformational system that uses archetypal images to depict the process by which we fully realize our potential. Susan has been studying the tarot almost as long as the enneagram, noting parallels between the two as she went along. In 2014, she wrote a 50-page article for the Enneagram Monthly that served as the first draft for the book.


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