So much has happened since we last spoke!
If you follow me on Instagram, you might already be aware that I was one of the approx. 600 womxn kicked out of the Free + Native Facebook Group for discussing Lacy & Jenna’s problematic and privileged comments during the first episode of the Expanded podcast. Of those of us kicked out, a significant number were BIWOC and members of the LGBTQIA+ community. And from what I understand, the initial remarks that ignited the weeks-long discussion around feminism, race, and privilege have since been edited out of that episode AND the multiple threads of comments, which included an intense amount of education and emotional labor by both BIWOC and allies have since been deleted from the Facebook group, and any trace that this discussion ever took place has now been erased. For more in-depth discussion of the events that took place, here are some resources:
- The instagram accounts @pushingbeauty and @kris.tyn.lee both discussed the events in their posts. You can also search the hashtags #notfreeandnative and #sonativescanbefree. Many prominent podcasts who have featured both Lacy and Jenna were tagged in these posts, such as Almost 30, Luke Storey, and Elevate the Globe, among others, so I'm interested to see if they choose to continue to promote the work of either woman moving forward.
- Jessica DeFino shared her reaction and next steps over at Illuum
- Maryam Ajayi wrote a piece for Medium that has also been picked up by The Thirlby.
- This piece by Liv Wilson M.A., LMHP-R on Medium covers not only the F+N controversy but the larger whitewashing and spiritual bypassing happening in the wellness space. I also know there are other articles and reflections being written, and I will share them to the resource library as they are published.
I've spent a ton of time in the weeks since reading, listening, and reflecting about where we go from here, not only for me personally, but for how interior creature works moving forward as part of the larger wellness community, and here's where I've landed.
I am fully committed to really ensuring that interior creature is a socially conscious business and an inclusive space.
And I also know that stating interior creature will be “conscious and inclusive” is not some magic box I get to check but something I have to show up and earn day after day after day. And I'm sure I will fuck up and have to engage in some tough conversations and learn a tremendous amount as I go. And I know it will take consistent work, so I wanted to take a minute to outline both the work I have been doing and will be doing moving forward...
EQUITY OF ACCESS
Thus far, my focus has been economic: I deeply believe that self-care isn’t a luxury item, and I believe that our ability to explore tools like Human Design shouldn’t come with these ridiculously exclusive price tags. But I can be, and will be, doing more.
Here's why I initially zeroed on financial access: When I was first hacking my own Human Design chart, I quickly discovered that there were pratically zero low-cost options. I shelled out over $50 for a printable chart analysis from one site, and found the descriptions of the aspects of my chart to be incredibly dense and jargon-y...so not helpful at all. This was probably an intentional marketing tactic by that website, because the next tier of paid options was having my chart explained to me 1:1 by a certified reader in an hour-long session for well over 6X my initial investment. A quick bit of googling revealed that was pretty much the industry standard rate. Now, I'm all about paying people for their time and energy, but I couldn't help but worry that the person I was going to pay to explain my chart to me was going to talk about it in the same way the printable chart analysis did, which would have been a waste of money.
But what about folks who don't have that kind of disposable income? If Human Design is supposed to be this deeply transformative tool, why are those in control of the information only sharing it with privileged individuals in a position to pay a ton for it?? Those officially in control have very intentionally set up only a few limited access points to understand information in your chart:
OPTION 1: sift through their dense, jargon-y free posts online, but only find information for certain parts of your chart (centers? check! incarnation cross? good luck...)
OPTION 2: purchase a $$ chart analysis which at least goes into the entire chart...but is still super dense and jargon-y (mine read like an excerpt from my college 200-level anatomy/physiology textbook and left me not only with a list of terminology to google but also with a TON of questions).
OPTION 3: pay them THOUSANDS of dollars in the hopes that they'll certify you in the system so you can provide readings to others OR
OPTION 4: pay them HUNDREDS of dollars so that someone else who paid THOUSANDS of dollars to get certified can talk you through your chart...but only in the way those that own the information want them to.
And that's fucked up.
In typical 1/3 Investigator/Martyr style, I decided to investigate the shit out of this system and hacked my chart completely on my own...so now, after buying about a dozen books, reading thousands of pages, and unpacking hundreds of charts, I very intentionally decided to disrupt this dynamic of dependency by creating a resource that put the teachings of Human Design into practical, easy-to-understand and actionable language, empowering anyone called to explore this system with the tools necessary to decode their own design.
I deliberately set up interior creature so there were multiple financial entry points:
- this ever-growing blog offers free resources and is accessible to anyone with an internet connection,
- YOU by design offers a deeper dive into these tools with even more resources at a low-cost monthly rate, and
- 1:1 readings are priced well-below the $300 per 60-minute industry standard.
In the spirit of transparency: Right now, I set my prices literally by reverse-engineering my budget. interior creature is my full time job, so I asked myself: How much did I have to bring in a month to pay my bills and put some money into savings? How many clients was I, on average, bringing in? And what was that magic number that allows me to offer the lowest price point possible while still meeting my immediate needs? Then I also needed to factor in the 90 minutes it takes me to analyze a chart plus the 2 hours on average spent with a client...I'm not sure that where I landed pricing-wise is perfect, so as interior creature grows and my calendar fills up, I look forward to being able to offer YOU by design as a free resource and offering more discounted readings. In the meantime, watch this space for coupon codes!
SCHOLARSHIPS AND SLIDING SCALE PRICING
I've done a terrible job publicizing this, but I do offer several readings a month at reduced or no cost to those who are not financially able to afford a reading but feel they would benefit from the tools. Please email me if this is your situation and something you're interested in discussing. Scholarships are also available to YOU by design.
I'M DONE WITH THE HUMAN DESIGN TERM "TRIBE"
Human Design throws this word around all the time as a synonym for community of all kinds (friends, family, relationships, colleagues, etc). And up until a few weeks ago I did, too, and that was absolutely wrong of me. "Tribe" is used frequently in my posts when talking about relevant aspects of the chart, and in some of the materials on YOU by design. The word always felt off to me, but I felt like I didn't really have the context to fully articulate why I was feeling that way, so I did some research.
Here's what changed my mind: In Human Design, the connotation of the word "tribe" seems anthropological. BUT Human Design is a tool used in the spiritual/wellness space, and there are so many instances of spiritual (mainly) white folks appropriating and warping Native culture and traditions in super disrespectful ways. And after even *just starting* to educate myself, I can't in good conscience continue to use that word anymore because, at the end of the day, my ability to "own" and use that word seems really selfish and small and wrong when I stopped to take a look at how larger issues of appropriation (the appropriation of the word "tribe" just being one of many micro-aggressions) impact individuals and communities who are already facing tremendous systemic oppression.
In other words, just because “tribe” is the "correct" term in Human Design, doesn't mean it's the right one.
Regardless of my intentions around my usage, I firmly believe that when a word or phrase like "tribe" is used in this appropriative way and has been show to cause real harm to others, it ceases to be OK for me to use it knowing harm will be caused. The damaging impact of the continued usage outweighs my intentions every time.
I am deeply sorry for having used it at all and am working now to go back through both my previous posts and the YOU by design content to remove it and replace it with “community,” not to erase evidence of my actions, but to avoid causing any further damage or hurt, as new readers find both sites every day. I also want to urge anyone working in this space who has called those in their community their "tribe" or who has used this term in their marketing/instagram/hashtags/etc. and wants to learn more about how I came to my decision to please reach out! I would love to find a time to chat to share with you all of the resources I've leaned on and to walk you through what I've learned so far.
PRIVILEGE, BIAS & HUMAN DESIGN
This one is HUGE, and I'm just starting to get my thoughts in order here, so please bear with me :)
When I first launched interior creature, I had no idea that Human Design was going to end up being my focus. And while I read charts for others and teach about the system full time, I am still very much a student. The more charts I unpack and analyze and the more research I do, I get more and deeper glimpses into how all of the different energies in our bodies interact to shape how we walk through the world. And I'm still very much unpacking and working with the energies within my own chart, and feeling out how to use that information for my own personal growth.
Up until now, this blog has been primarily educational. I've done the reading and the research on Human Design, synthesized what I've learned, and tried to break it down in a way that is practical, actionable and accessible. But as my understanding of the system has deepened, I've started noticing some fairly big problems both in terms of how the system is messaged and practiced by others. Many of the primary teachers/practitioners of the system are white and/or come from privileged backgrounds, and when I first started this blog, I was taking their teachings at face value and hadn't been examining if or how their privileged perspectives had found their way into the teachings. In recent months, however, I've been examining these teachings and questioning these messages privately...but it took Lacy and Jenna's positioning of their problematic and privileged views as Human Design-based recommendations (!!!) for me to take a giant step back and ask myself "if this is how these people truly feel, how have those views impacted other things they've said about the system, specifically teachings that I integrated into my own practice? What did I miss and, worse, what has my privilege allowed me to ignore?"
I’ve been struggling with that age-old question: can I separate the teachings from the teacher? And more broadly, can the tools Human Design provides be used in a truly conscious and inclusive way?
I think the system can be used in a such a way, but doing so is a constant work in progress. I've been going back over old posts and asking myself some tough questions: I know my posts are researched...but is the information I'm sharing truly inclusive? Or are there teachings that perpetuate privilege? And is my privilege or bias slipping in anywhere in how I'm sharing the information? These are absolutely questions I'm still unpacking.
I'll be posting about this issue in a more in-depth way in the weeks to come, but for now, please know I'm going back through old posts and resources just to ensure I wasn't thoughtlessly passing along teachings that perpetuate a privileged worldview and diminish the experiences of BIWOC or experiences of members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
In the meantime, if anything you've read on this blog or in YOU by design has made you say "wait, that might be true for you, but that erases my experience" PLEASE feel free to let me know, as long as you feel comfortable and called to do so, of course! I do not expect free education or emotional labor but I do welcome any and all conversation!
New content might slow for a bit as I go through this review, but know moving forward, I will definitely be thinking a lot more critically about the information I'm taking in and how I choose to share it here.
Thank you so much for reading this long post! I have so many more thoughts I can't wait to share (on Human Design as it relates to self-proclaimed gurus and the prevalence of spiritual bypassing in this space) but I will save those for another time. Moving forward, I promise to continue to hold up a more critical lens as I hold this space for our exploration of Human Design and for our personal growth. In the meantime, if there's anything you would like to discuss with me, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.