Human Design Shapes & Definition

What do the colors in the shapes mean in Human Design

“What do the colors of the shapes mean?” or “why are some colored and some are white?” are  some of the first questions you might have when you are looking at your Human Design chart .

The first thing to know is that it doesn’t matter what the actual colors are (i.e. red, brown or yellow), they either have a color or they are white.  If they have a color, they are called “defined” and if they are white they are called “undefined” or “open”.

They are two different ways that you feel energy, you either feel it consistently or you feel it in a variety of ways depending on your surroundings.

What does it mean to be defined?

When the shape is filled in on your Human Design Chart it is considered defined.  It’s a consistent way of living out an energy.  It’s what you radiate out to the world. It’s what others perceive you have.  You are broadcasting the information out.  Think of a radio wave where you are sending out the words you are sharing.  In the Human Design Chart energy you don’t actually have to be sharing the information verbally. For example in your Human Design Head Center (the center for inspiration) if you have it colored in or defined then you are inspiring others.  You broadcast out the energy that is represented by the Center it is coming from.

broadcast and human design defined centers radio

The challenge is being open other perspectives or ways of doing things for the energy of that Center.  For example if you have a defined Ajna Center (the center for data processing and storage) you may have learned how to do something a certain way – maybe you learned how to load the dishwasher from one of your parents.  You may think it’s just they way you do it, it’s consistent.  However, you move in with a roommate and they load it a different way. At first you may not believe there is really another way to do it, but there are actually many ways.  So, if you have a defined center, just be aware that if you get stuck, you may just be stuck in doing something, or thinking about something they way you always have. If you can open yourself up to new ways of doing things – and even ask someone who has that center undefined/open for their perspective, they may be able to see if from many different angles.

What does it mean to be undefined ?

When the shape is not filled in or is white in on your Human Design Chart it is considered undefined or sometimes this is called open.  In your undefined/open centers you may feel the energy differently depending on where you are and who you are with.  This is because you are you take in energy from others and amplifying it.  The open centers are where you take in energy and information in from the world around you (you get the energy from others) and you amplify it.  You can have a potential for deep wisdom to know others, but you will also have a predictable energy behavioral pattern that can cause pain if you aren’t aware of what is happening.  Once you become aware of what your open centers mean, you can realize what is yours and what is not.

For example, if your Emotional Solar Plexus (the center for emotions) is undefined/open, you are an emotional empath.  This means you can feel other people’s emotions – even more intensely than they do.  If they are happy – you might feel really happy, if they are sad – you might feel even sadder than they do.

recieve and human design undefined centers

The challenge is knowing what energy is yours and what is someone else’s energy.  If you are not aware that you might be taking in energy from others, you can be really confused or you may feel pain in some way.  Adding on to the example above, if you are taking in someone’s emotions you might be like “what in the world, why am I so sad?”

Or if you have an open Human Design Head Center (center for inspiration), you are taking in inspirations and ideas from other people.  You may think they are all yours and you need to go act on them, so you will feel pressure you to answer other people’s questions, you may waste time or get frustrated if you are acting on inspiration that is not for you.  If your Head Center is open, all the ideas are not for you, you should only follow the ones that come to you according to your Human Design Strategy – i.e. if you are a Generator, wait for a sign or if you are a Projector, wait for an invitation.

When you have an undefined center, be open to thinking and feeling others’ energy as a gift. It’s possible you will know others better and be able to empathize when you feel their emotions if you have open Emotional Solar Plexus Center.  It’s possible you can just think for the sake of thinking or be inspired for fun and not act on everything if you have an open Head Center.  It’s possible in every center for a gift of receiving energy from others.

If you are having pain from the energy in the undefined or open centers, I have two possible ideas to support you.  You can think of yourself as a screen door and not a sponge.  You can let the energy flow through you and think it or feel it for a short time and then let it go.  If you are unaware you are taking in others energy you often unintentionally act like a sponge and take things in and keep them as though they are yours. I encourage you to find out where your open or undefined in your chart and see if you can find out what the energy is all about for that center and then just be aware of that energy.  Eventually you will become more and more of a screen as you are more and more aware.

Another option is to just leave the physical space where you are feeling the energy. If you are in a room and feel angry and it just comes on and you don’t know why, step outside or even just step into another room for 15 minutes.  You essentially break the auric (energy around each person) space and you can let the other’s emotions dissipate.  You can then enter the space again with a new awareness that the emotion is not yours.


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12 thoughts on “Human Design Shapes & Definition

  1. Please answer the question as promised in the title. There must be a difference between the colors. If there were no difference between the colors put in the centers, they would all be the same color, after all. Thanks!

    1. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I do intend to deliver my titles. 🙂 I will update the post or title. The only difference in coloring that I know of is to show they are different centers. You will see people changing the colors as Human Design evolves. I think if they had colored them the chakra colors, it would have made more sense. I can give you a little insight into that. There are 7 chakras and 9 centers. Basically the heart chakra split into the G/Identity and the Will. And the Solar Plexus split into Spleen and ESP. You might be able to prove me wrong by someone else’s interpretation of the colors for the centers, but my practitioner certification training said that the colors don’t mean anything significant, that it matters more if they are colored or not. Does the Chakra thing at least help, possibly?

  2. Hi, I became so interested in human design that i chose this topic for my personal project at school. I’d love to use your pictures used in this website for my research. I’d appreciate if i could get your permission for your picture of the 9 centers! Thank you.

      1. Thank you so much and no it’ll be fine i can save it off the site! Have a good day, i appreciate it.

  3. First of all, thank you for posting on this topic I did find a lot of the info very helpful, and I do appreciate that.
    Sorry if this may have been posted twice – What do you mean the colours don’t matter? Are they meaningless? As a visual artist, I express myself with color, and my first reaction is to feel insulted by that. I’ve only recently found out about this system and I’m very curious of the hows and whys (maybe something to do with my undefined 61 gate?). As a practitioner of mystic arts, from tarot and advanced astrology to some understanding of the Chakra system and the I Ching. I find it very hard to believe that Ra Uru does not care, or make any sense of the colours. Hmm….

    1. Hi…I hear you. I would like them to mean something too. I would also like them to be more visually appealing colors, in my opinion. 🙂 I became certified with Karen Curry Parker who studied directly with Ra and she told us that they don’t have a significant meaning by color. But, now I am curious if maybe there’s alternative answers. I can post this question on a forum that I am part of, with a bunch of Human Design Specialists and see if anyone has something to say about it that I don’t know.

      1. The earth/gold and red colours do make sense. The Red and gold/earth, in astrology and tarot relates to fire and earth elements. Aries is red and taurus is gold/earth (sometimes green). In the chakras system, red relates to anger and sense of grounding. It has the lowest vibrational frequency in scientific therms. I don’t mind the primary colours. They are very powerful. In fact, besides black and white, red, yellow and blue are the only colours an artist really need. From these three colours any other color can be made. Color temperature is also very important to understand and it is part of basic color theory for painters. At any case, I think it would be great to bring the color topic into the discussion. Thanks for replying. Cheers!

  4. The red and golden/brown colours do make sense. In astrology and tarot – red relates to fire, and golden/brown to earth. Ex: Aries, a fire sign, is red. Taurus, an earth sign, is golden/brown (sometimes green). In the chakra system red relates to anger but it’s also grounding. In scientific terms it has the lowest vibrational frequency.
    Although this isn’t really the case in hand, I don’t mind primary colours. They are extremely important and very powerful. In fact, besides black and white, artists only need red, blue and yellow to create every other color of the rainbow. Color temperature is also essential.
    At any case, I think it would be great to bring colours into the discussion. Thank you for replying. Cheers!

    Again, this is my second try posting this. First try seemed to have vanished. 🙁

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