Human Design Insights #4: the Root center

Location of the Root center in the Bodygraph.

Ironically, this post about the Root center came to my mind yesterday, but I am only typing it up now – while sitting in a crowded metro full of commuters. For me, that illustrates the nature of the (open/undefined) Root center clearer than anything.

The Root center is the base impulse of the whole energetic system. The Root center gives us the impulse to move or to be still. It defines whether we fight, flight or freeze in a stressful moment. “Do I move or not?” is the question it is answering.

The Root center is not an awareness center. It is not possible to be conscious of what gets you moving or not. The Root is defined to operate in a certain way by the gates and channels that you find in your chart. It recognises energy as it enters the body. It is the first stop, as the base chakra, where physical energy is felt entering the body and as such defines how the energy will move through the body – it defines the level to which the energy is pressurized.

“SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE WITH THIS RIGHT NOW!” or “Relax, this can wait.” It is not about awareness and this has nothing to do with intelligence, reasoning or right or wrong. It is simply an effect of the programming in your DNA as it is expressed in your design.

Stress is the name of the game in our world today. We think we need to be doing something more often than not. Everything needs to be done right now and procrastination is considered a deadly sin. This is because we confuse the two pressure centers that we have. The Root gives physical pressure, the Head center gives mental pressure (more about this center in a few days). The root may judge “nothing needs to be done right now,” the mind – with the pressure to think from the Head center – will immediately and constantly question this.

The mind will then try to get the body to move. To-do lists, deadlines, resolutions, appointments and so many other ways to mentally set the time for when movement will begin. But this is not how the Root operates at all. It moves when it moves, and when it doesn’t need to be moving, it is still and waits patiently for the right timing. This goes for both the defined and open Root.

Root pressure is like the element Earth, Mind pressure is like the element air or ether. Pressure to move is not the same as pressure to think. All trying to move from your mind does, is turn your natural system upside down and put you in a constant state of stress and tension from trying to deal with the mental pressure you put yourself under.

If you are not moving, there is no need to move. Make this a rule in your life, and you will never have to feel overwhelmed by stress again. Relaxing every once in a while is not enough. As a collective, we need to undo a lifetime of ignoring our natural impulses and only moving according to the pressure others put on us.

For the defined Root it means that you will have a very specific timing in which you get into action – nothing outside your own impulses and authority has anything to say about that.

When your Root center is open, tension, stress and pressure are going to kill your motivation rather than get you moving. You can trust that when you need to do something, you will do it and otherwise it is time to be at rest. And if you want to get something done, surrounding yourself with some healthy pressure (like in a busy metro train) could help you get moving.

Would you like to know more about your design? Take a look at the readings page or send me a message.


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Ariane – Human Design analist & coach

Ik ben hier om te begeleiden en te inspireren. Human Design kwam in 2009 in mijn leven, nog voor mijn eerste reis naar Azië. Het is zo een altijd-aanwezige lens geweest waardoor ik diepere lagen van het menselijk bestaan zie. Na het afronding van mijn universitaire opleiding Culturele Antropologie, was ik van 2014 tot 2018 in opleiding bij Alokanand Diaz (Human Design Republic) en de International Human Design School.