38-28 Channel of Struggle – Human Design

The Human Design 38-28 Channel of Struggle is the energy of a natural-born warrior searching for meaning and purpose in life. 

Amy Doyle

Amy Doyle

Holistic Counsellor

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In your Human Design Chart, your channels represent how life force flows through you. It is significant to your chemistry, your charm, your essence that communicates with the world. 

Channels sit within three circuits (individual, collective and tribal), further highlighting different values, principles, emotional needs and core beliefs that come with each channel/circuit. 

Each of your defined channels characterisies a specific theme, function or gift that is consistent and reliable within you. If this channel isn’t defined/activated it doesn’t mean that you don’t have access to it, it just means that it shows up in various ways and in it’s own timing. 

In this article you will find information relating to the 38-28 Channel of Struggle, including:

  • What is the Channel of Struggle 38/28
  • How do you know if it activated in your Human Design Chart
  • How does unconscious or conscious definition affect its impact
  • High expression and challenges of those who have this channel defined

What is the 38-28 Channel of Struggle?

The 38/28 Channel of Struggle according to Traditional Human Design is ‘a design of stubbornness’. It is a heroes energy that is stubborn and uncompromising in order for it to continue to drive forward through hardship and challenge and find purpose, meaning and what is worth fighting for.

It is the combined energy of Human Design Gate 38: The Gate of The Fighter and Visionary and Human Design Gate 28: The Gate of The Game-Player and Adventure/Challenge.

  • Gate 38 is all about pressure to find meaning, purpose and fighting for it with a pure heart, high values and valour. It looks to Gate 28 for support in taking conscious risks and discerning what is worth fighting for.
  • Gate 28 is all about facing the darkness of life with courage and finding adventure and aliveness even when life is challenging. It looks to Gate 34 for support in perseverance and finding meaning in one thing.

The Channel of Struggle is also categorised as a Projected Channel this simply means that the channel is not connected to the sacral. Expressing the energy located here follows the same strategy as our Projector energy types – ‘wait to be recognised or invited’. What does this mean? That you must wait for correct timing for this energy to be expressed effectively – using your own strategy and authority and waiting for (authentic and aligned) invitations, openings and clear opportunities for  you to know what is worth your time and energy. 

How do you know if the Channel of Struggle 38/28 is activated in your Human Design Chart?

The Channel of Struggle 38/28 is activated through Gate 38 located in the Root and Gate 28 located in the Spleen.

It is part of the Individual (Knowing Sub-Circuit) Circuit, meaning those who have it activated are here to be different and unique in order to bring change into the world. As it sits in the Knowing Sub-Circuit it is deeply auditory by nature in terms of learning and expression. Their path can also be one of vulnerability and struggle, and because it is such a personal journey it can also be quite lonely.

High Expression of 38-28 Channel of Struggle

In it’s highest expression the 38/28 Channel of Struggle shows up as: 

  • Having purpose and meaning in life
  • A healthy mindset around struggle, challenge and adventure
  • Ability to discern what is worth your time and energy
  • Not being easily influenced by others – your stubbornness and selective hearing is a gift 

Challenges of 38-28 Channel of Struggle

Challenges that you may face with the activated 38/28 Channel of Struggle include:

  • Not knowing what to fight for – or what struggles are worth engaging in
  • Lacking purpose in life
  • Fearing that time is running out
  • The mind choosing your battles instead of being initiated through your strategy and authority

How does unconscious or conscious definition affect channels?

When channels are defined (coloured) they provide consistent, reliable communication between the two energy centres they connect in your chart.

  • When channels are conscious (coloured black in traditional charts and orange if downloaded from this website), you are likely aware of how this energy plays out in your everyday life.
  • When channels are unconscious (coloured red in traditional charts and purple if downloaded from this website), you may not have realised they were there unless pointed out by others.  Or you may have thought that everyone felt that way.

If you have both colours it simply means that you have a mix of conscious and unconscious energy. And you may not have realised the full breadth of potential available to you or been able to articulate the gift within.

Reflective Questions for 38-28 Channel of Struggle

If you have the Channel of Struggle defined reflect on the following questions:

  • What has been the role of struggle in your life? Do you see it as a hindrance or catalyst for personal growth?
  • Do you use the energy of this channel in a positive or negative way towards your self and/or others?
  • What strengths or qualities have you developed as a result of navigating struggles, challenges, adventures?
  • How do you know or discern what is worth fighting for?
  • Do you know what your purpose in life is and what gives your life meaning? 
  • Where you taught to hide this energy as a child? Or that it was bad? (Consider the circuitry themes that played out in your childhood relationships)
  • Where your taught to embrace this energy as a child? How does it show up for you today? 
  • Are you using this energy to it’s full capacity? If not, what will you do differently?

Remember to have the Channel of Struggle activated in your Human Design Chart, both Gate 38 and Gate 28 must be defined.

If you only have one of these gates activated, it is called a hanging gate and you will likely find you naturally attract those who have the other Gate defined – also called the Harmonising Gate. Be sure to go check out each of these gates for further details on how their energies play out.

Lastly, if one of the gates of the defined channel sits in your Incarnation Cross you will find your life purpose is naturally generating energy all of the time. You are not waiting for the energy of the stars or others for your Cross to function or power up – the light is always on!

Meet The Author

Amy Doyle

Amy Doyle

Amy is a Holistic Counsellor who helps her clients move from this idea that they are broken or missing pieces of their own puzzle, to owning their story, claiming back all parts of themselves and merging together as one team to allow them to rest and be in their deepest expression.

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  • Bunnell, Lynda & Ra Uru Hu. The Definitive Book of Human Design: The Science of Differentiation. HDC Publishing, 2017.
  • Parkyn, Chetan. Human Design: Discover the Person You Were Born to Be. New World Library, 2009.
  • Rudd, Richard. Human Design – Circuitry. Gene Keys Publishing, 2021
  • Magnusson, Brynja. Incarnation Cross. Ceremoniance, 2021


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