Netflix came out with this show called, Hollywood, which received all the negative reviews from critics. It's based on an alternative history version of Hollywood's Golden Age, where we got actors like Vivien Leigh, Rock Hudson, and the star of today's Human Design chart reading: Anna May Wong.

During this era, Hays Code anti-miscegenation laws were strongly enforced so interracial relationships and scenes were forbidden on screen.

It didn't matter if the characters were people of color or white, but the actors needed to be of the same ethnic background.

So, instead of casting Anna May Wong as the Chinese wife of a Chinese character in The Good Earth, the roles were given to two white actors dressed in yellowface.

Anna May Wong Human Design

Anna May Wong is a controversial character, even in Asian communities.

She's the first internationally recognized Asian American actress and used her fame to help the Chinese cause against Japan during World War II.

At the same time, she was limited to roles that furthered the stereotype of the “Dragon Lady” and Yellow Peril – the idea that Chinese women were all prostitutes and here to wreak havoc on the pure American way of life.

Anna didn't have it easy, but in true Manifestor type, she could not be controlled.

She left a major impact that opened the door to conversations about Asian Americans on the silver screen.

Today, it would be my honor to do Anna May Wong's Human Design chart, based on a rectified birth time.

Anna May Wong, Emotional Manifestor

Anna May Wong Human Design

(Image created with myBodygraph)

Is anyone surprised that Anna May Wong was a Manifestor?

Manifestors are the Human Design type put on this planet to listen to themselves and initiate something new into the world. They are made to determine the path they want to take, without much outside influence, and go from 0-100.

They're known for their closed and pushing aura, which can be difficult to live with, especially as a child. Manifestors are fiercely independent because of this aura. Other people's influences need to fight in order to reach them, especially if it's unwelcome. (You can read more about Manifestors in this gigantic Human Design guide).

The Manifestor traits play out in Anna May Wong's life as she:

  • Became the first Asian American to be recognized in Hollywood.
  • Created the first American tv series starring an Asian American lead.
  • Skipped school to watch the cinema, against her father's wishes.
  • Initiated conversations with filmmakers at the age of 9, in hopes of landing a role.
  • Forced Hollywood to recognize her stardom and talent, even when they had no idea what to do with it.
  • Hated the stereotypical roles she was forced to play so she joined a vaudeville tour and later left to act in Europe.

She also has a defined solar plexus, meaning that she has an emotional authority. Emotional authorities can make you feel like your feelings are a constant rollercoaster of ups and downs, distorting your perception between illusion and reality.

There's a saying that, “There's no truth in the now,” when it comes to having an emotional authority. Your answers only become clear when you are in a calm and centered state.

Anna May Wong seemed to have a firm understanding of how her emotions worked because damn, she was resilient. I have a suspicion that her defined heart center plays a huge rule in her resilience, but we'll explore that later.

I was so tired of the parts I had to play. Why is it that the screen Chinese is nearly always the villain of the piece, and so cruel a villain–murderous, treacherous, a snake in the grass. We are not like that. How should we be, with a civilization that’s so many times older than that of the West. We have our own virtues. We have our rigid code of behavior, of honor. Why do they never show these on the screen? Why should we always scheme, rob, kill?

– Anna May Wong

Right Angle Cross of Tension, Gate 38 in Line 4

Anna May Wong Human Design

(Image created with myBodygraph)

Seeing the RAX of Tension as Anna May Wong's incarnation cross massively raises the amount of respect I already have for her.

Not only was she a lone Manifestor, a trailblazer, and human being forced into playing a stereotype, her incarnation cross expects her to maintain tension throughout her life.

Chetan Parkyn describes this incarnation cross by saying:

Just as the strings of a musical instrument cannot create the right sound if not kept at the right tension, neither can the essential things in life grow and be maintained without the necessary controls.

This is a life theme where you need the right amount of relaxation and pressure in order to be brought out at your best. The more she held onto her iron will, the more people would try to control her image.

She walks multiple paths and weaves herself through multiple worlds, often shifting to meet people where they need her to be while trying to maintain her sense of individuality. (Note: Undefined G center!)

Many Asian Americans understand this feeling. It's the balance of being Chinese enough to honor your ancestry, but American enough to establish a life in the new world.

A strong sense of being focused, centered, and honest with oneself can help keep this balance. Easier said than done, right?

This incarnation cross has the changing line of 4: the opportunist.

She knew how to leverage her connections and relationships, while constantly drawing attention to herself.

Anna's first role was as an uncredited extra, carrying a lantern in the background. Her father's friend helped her land that role.

She also had a famous affair with Tod Browning (probably didn't help the Dragon Lady stereotype, but added to her fame). You know Tod Browning from 1931's Dracula.

Anna May Wong Human Design

Her friendships were usually high-profile and to directors and other actresses, which likely helped her navigate Hollywood in a time where Asian Americans weren't particularly welcome.

This isn't to say that she couldn't do it through her talent alone. She lived in a time where it was commonplace for women to work twice as hard to get the same recognition as men, and women of color to work twice as hard to get the same recognition as white women.

The RAX of Tension is usually a lonely road, where others will kind of understand you, but not fully. The changing line of 4 may have encouraged Anna to allow others to come with her on her journey and to not close herself off to company.

South Node in Gate 37, Line 6; North Node in Gate 40, Line 6.

Anna May Wong Human Design

(Image created with myBodygraph)

In simplified terms, the South Node can be thought of as “What you're naturally gifted with/what you brought from your previous life” and the North Node can be seen as, “What you're hoping to achieve in this lifetime/what your soul is yearning for.”

I'm keeping the language ambiguous in terms of fate/destiny because whether or not you believe in these things is up to you. The origins of Human Design (and even some parts of Chinese spirituality) believe that our lives are prewritten for us. That free will is an illusion.

However, I don't personally believe in the lack of free will and I'm also not here to push religious beliefs onto you.

Take the meaning of the South and North node, as you wish.

That being said, Anna May Wong's South Node is in Gate 37 and I'm trying not to get worked up as I type what this means.

Her Gate 37 can be found in the emotional center, which is her authority. If you look at this image of her chart, you can see that it's connected to her heart center, which is connected to her throat center and splenic center. Her “natural born gifts” spill into her willpower, survival instincts and the way she manifests/speaks her desires into existence.

Anna May Wong Human Design

(Image created with myBodygraph)

Gate 37 is the Gate of Family. This is where you call home.

With this being in Line 6, there is a strong recognition of ancestry, familial ties, and a spiritual bond to your people. She is the culmination of not only her direct relatives, forged by blood but also the faces and souls of the Asian Americans in Hollywood that will come after her.

It's the idea of bringing her family (in both a literal and broader sense) together just by existing… and she did a great job of that.

That's why, decades after her passing, we are still talking about her and we are still showing her image on our screens. 

We like to think of love as enveloping and gentle.

Her love for her art and her people was in true Manifestor fashion: forceful, unrelenting, and marked by her aggressive iron will… ironically, this is what Asian American women were shunned for with the “Dragon Lady” stereotype.

Anna May Wong's North Node is the Gate of Aloneness.

That name doesn't fully encompass the vibe of this gate, so let's call it The Gate of Liberation instead.

(I'll take this time to remind Human Design purists that these gates were a western bastardization of I Ching anyway so if they can change the name to get a point across, I can change the name to get a point across. I'm a 3/5, after all.)

This gate is about recognizing the shackles and chains that you have found yourself in, and a way to break free.

Many of us don't have enough tenacity (I couldn't think of a better word than this!) to break out of the constraints we're in.

Just this morning, I was reading through my Facebook and saw a bunch of posts I didn't agree with. I wanted to say something, but the pit of my stomach was churning. I felt scared of what the backlash for honoring my truth would look like.

It wasn't until a friend spoke out and shared her opinion (which was similar to mine) that I found the courage to say something.

Poetically telling someone to break out of their cage is easy. Putting it into action requires defying the status quo, making yourself (and others) uncomfortable, and doing something that could potentially ruin your reputation (or even your life).

Guides, coaches, therapists, Human Design readers, can point out the cage you're in but no one can remove you from it. This is a path that you must walk alone in order to liberate yourself.

Line 6 suggests that Anna May Wong was aware of this need for liberation and intentionally found ways to make that happen.

Her travels to Europe and refusal to continue taking on stereotypical roles, while creating her own tv show, are proof that lived out her North Node.

To her credit, this North Node shattered walls for many Asian Americans. Today, we get to see shows like Never Have I Ever (starring a South Asian lead and family) on Netflix and see movies like Crazy Rich Asians.

We have a long way to go, but Anna May Wong gets so much credit for breaking those shackles for the rest of us.

I'd also like to nod towards her Pluto, Gate 45, line 4.

Here, she gathered the parts of herself that felt Chinese American and put it on display for the world to see, shattering the ideas of what makes an American an American and what makes Chinese people Chinese. She burned it all down and set a foundation that the rest of us can rise from.

Defined Heart Center

Anna May Wong Human Design

(Image created with myBodygraph)

The last thing I want to touch upon is Anna May Wong's defined heart center and its active channels.

Only 30% of the population has a defined heart center. These are people who are born for competition and can willpower their way through life. They can come off stubborn and tunnel-visioned when they're focused on a goal.

This is also thought of as a sign of a natural salesman or someone who succeeds in the material plane. They know what deals to strike and what promises to make.

Inside her defined heart center are three channels:

  • Channel 2145: The Channel of Money
  • Channel 4037: The Channel of Community
  • Channel 4426: The Channel of Surrender

The Channel of Money is about success in the material world. In spirituality, we normally don't like to talk about materialism or the ego (the heart center is literally the ego center) but in Human Design, these aren't taboo subjects.

Her supporting role in the film The Thief of Bagdad helped earn over $2 million. That's in early 1900's currency.

Signing contracts and making bank.

The Channel of Community suggests that even though Anna May Wong received stereotypical roles and couldn't find many leading roles in Hollywood, she may have had a loving community that she was a part of. I noted that she had high profile friends and this channel shows that these friendships were likely real.

There was some sort of mutual benefit between the friendships and as she became more successful, so did her friends. (And vice versa). 

Her friendships weren't always perfect, but lessons were learned. Her romantic affairs and a failed business venture brought notoriety to her name, though she still kept good company.

Lastly, the Channel of Surrender.

Anna May Wong was a natural marketer. She westernized her name in order to land Hollywood roles (don't be mean, Asian Americans, she did what she did with what she had in a time period where opportunities like this didn't exist), she made connections with the right people, she even curated her public image in trendy flapper fashion.

I wouldn't be surprised if she helped with the marketing aspects of selling movies, behind the scenes, or offered advice to her Hollywood friends that helped them make more money.

I'm Anna May Wong. I come from old Hong Kong, but now I'm a Hollywood star.

– Anna May Wong

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Your fellow passenger,
Fiona Wong