The Enneagram personality types evolved from Oscar Ichazo's ego-types. As I understood it, the whole point of identifying a person's ego-type and fixation was so it could be remedied. The remedy for the fixation involved not only the holy idea for that type but also avoidance of the ego trap. The ego trap is contrasted with the holy idea because the trap points to the false remedy which is where most people get trapped or stuck. It's where the ego fixation gets reinforced (ego trap) rather than where it gets remedied (holy idea). What has me concerned with the Enneagram personality types is that while the ego fixations and holy ideas are taught by many, the ego traps seem to be missing from those teachings. I can find the fixations and holy ideas described on the websites of various schools, authors, and teachers, but I don't remember any of them describing the traps. Where did the ego traps go?
A clue to this may lie in the labels for some of the traps. For instance, the trap of type 1 is perfection. The label of personality type 1 is most often the perfectionist. Could it be that the ego traps have become the personality types? That would explain why the Enneagram of traps are nowhere to be found when the fixations and holy ideas are discussed. If this is true then it suggests a troublesome thought. When people learn about the Enneagram personality types are they really learning about the ego traps? If so, then is having an individual identify themselves as an Enneagram personality type the same thing as having them identify with their ego trap? That's troubling to me because the whole point is to NOT identify with or get caught up in the ego trap because it reinforces the ego fixation.
While some people studying and applying the Enneagram personality types are aware that identifying one's type is only a starting point toward becoming less fixated, many people exploring the Enneagram personality types without the benefit of a knowledgeable teacher or guide approach it differently. They tend to identify that type as who they are (i.e., I am a type 4, etc.) instead of what fixation they're caught in. I imagine this is the danger that was foreseen by those not wanting to make the Enneagram types available without the guidance of a teacher - the types reinforcing the ego rather than remedying it.