3 Case Studies in Human Design: Open vs. Defined Centers

The 3 Case Studies whose Human Design bodygraphs are given below are real people, friends who noticed right away the similarity in their bodygraphs, first of all in terms of centers:open vs. centers:defined. All three were able to benefit from the advice prescribed for anyone with these very same open and defined centers.

Definition in centers then becomes an entry point to learn how Human Design works. Notice in the bodygraphs the centers that are blank and white. These are open centers. The colored centers are defined.

Case Study #1

  • TYPE: Manifesting Generator
  • STRATEGY: To Respond
  • NOT-SELF THEME: Frustration
  • INNER AUTHORITY: Emotional – Solar Plexus
  • PROFILE: 3 / 5
  • DEFINITION: Single Definition
  • INCARNATION CROSS: Right Angle Cross of The Sleeping Phoenix (55/59 | 34/20)

Case Study #2

  • TYPE: Generator
  • STRATEGY: To Respond
  • NOT-SELF THEME: Frustration
  • INNER AUTHORITY: Emotional – Solar Plexus
  • PROFILE: 6 / 2
  • DEFINITION: Triple Split Definition
  • INCARNATION CROSS: Left Angle Cross of Uncertainty (8/14 | 55/59)

Case Study #3

  • TYPE: Manifesting Generator
  • STRATEGY: To Respond
  • NOT-SELF THEME: Frustration
  • INNER AUTHORITY: Emotional – Solar Plexus
  • PROFILE: 5 / 1
  • DEFINITION: Single Definition
  • INCARNATION CROSS: Left Angle Cross of Revolution (4/49 | 8/14)

Recommended for all people:

Do not make decisions from open centers.

Open Centers are where

  • we operate inconsistently.
  • we are “completely unconscious.”
  • “we are here to become wise.”
  • we take in the conditioning of others and amplify it.

With heart/ego center open, it’s all or nothing

The ego center governs willpower and self-esteem: what is worthy.  Those with open heart center:

  • think everything is interesting or nothing is interesting.
  • seem ego-less in the company of those with definition in heart center.
  • have strength of will when accompanied by ally with defined heart center, but when left alone unable to remain constant in intention. 
  • think they are supposed to have willpower.
  • amplify others’ will (not without distortion along the way).
  • are either all in or not at all interested.

Open Heart? You Must

  • Be wise about self-esteem.
  • Check: Am I trying to prove myself?

The Open Heart Must Not

  • If pressured to make a commitment, the open heart can never guarantee their commitment.
  • “Just do it” is not a motto for the open heart. They should never try to will their way through something.

Thought Center Open

Openness amplifies. 

Those with open thought centers amplify everyone else’s thoughts.

“The one thing that will mess you up: You are not your mind.

“When you hear inner voices that run along the lines of ‘I should _______’ or ‘If only I ________, then I will _______’ or ‘I’m not good enough but if I ________’ these voices are generated by the mind.”

Splenic Center Open 

With no “truth in the now,” those with open splenic centers can find themselves going back and forth on a decision, until they see how certainty is never going to be 100% and how  to operate with maybe 85% certainty.

They  don’t know how they will respond until they do.  Some things they can know instantly, but for bigger things they must take their time. The time it takes is variable–it could be overnight, weeks, months or years.

Open Splenic Center Must

  • process decisions through emotional centers
  • “Experiment. Wait, then wait some more. Feel into it. Feel the highest highs, the lowest lows. Feel your feelings. You might need to be alone. You are a feeling person–your “Strategy” and your “Authority” are based on this. Be in the experience. Don’t ‘figure it out.’

Defined Centers

The remaining centers (following the “circuitry,” or colored-in “channels,” from top down: Ajna, throat, ji, solar plexus, sacral and root) are “defined,” with circles highlighted that connect to highlighted circles in another center.

Defined centers are “turned on,” and “operating within you at all times. When people meet you, this is what they get.” (your definition, your circuitry as represented by the energy flow among the defined centers). The bodygraph (that chart above) is a roadmap of the way your energy runs.

The ajna centers, governing how we think–thinking processes–are defined for all three. 

The solar plexus is defined in all three Cases. It operates in the frequency of a wave. They  have trouble retaining what they hear, as each time they catch it at a different point in the wave frequency, on an up- or down-turn, with the variations seen in each frame of  time-lapse photography.


 “The solar plexus operates on a frequency of nervousness. Make a decision when there is little to no nervousness. Wait to respond. Anyone who rushes you needs to leave you alone. Melancholy can turn to depression. Individuality can get stuck [when] nothing is happening. The pulse [of the frequency] has to move.”

More on this cohort group in the first post in this series and further discussion of aspects of their design and personality–the 43/23 channel now the next most remarkable feature.

Being Undefined in Other Centers (than the thought, heart and splenic centers in the 3 case studies)

Others might have other centers open. For instance an open root center needs to ask:

Am I being impatient?

  • rushing around
  • talking too fast
  • driving too fast
  • feeling pressure
  • things moving faster
  • accidents
  • burnout
  • poor decision making