The Primal Mother-Child Bond
Moon in a horoscope represents the quality of initial bonding that takes place between a mother and her baby – arguably, it is the deepest and most passionate link we will ever form with the outer world, as our life – being a newborn – literally depends on the strength and endurance of this bond.
Every connection that comes after this initial bonding will be defined in comparison to that first relationship, albeit subconsciously: we tend to expect the same type/strength of emotional expression, as well as wanting to maintain the same length and depth of affectionate communication we enjoyed with our mother.
(Some examples: How often and how long did your mother hold you in her arms and spoke to you lovingly before turning her attention to something else? If your mother had mood swings or fits of temper, how many good days were you able to have with her before she lost it? How many bad days? If your parents fought a lot, how many good days were you able to have before a fight?)
As children we cannot choose what we will bond with – what if we see in our mother’s eyes, instead of love and admiration, a resentment or lack of interest? We may have no choice but to bond with whatever level of hostility or disinterest we perceive in the environment, and to begin defining our world from that primal template (i.e. expecting certain level of anger or emotional disconnection as the norm in relationships.)
This may explain why some people need more “space” than others in relationships or some couples fight more often than others. Often an ethnic culture carries its own relational template, which is passed down from generations – thus giving some culture a reputation for being passionate, while giving others a reputation for being restrained*.
Moon in Your Natal Horoscope – The Quality of Early Bonding
While the entire horoscope must be studied to assess the quality of the early bonding experience, the sign, house and aspect placement of the natal Moon offer some clues. I’ll list a few key measurements that stand out in analysis:
- Moon in Fire Sign and/or Mars-Moon aspect will increase the need for independence and ego gratification. The question is, how did this come about? Was there a great deal of time spent alone, or a special reward given for exceptional performance?
- Moon in Air Sign, and/or Moon – Mercury or Venus aspect will accelerate the urge to connect and communicate with the environment. What factors facilitated communication in the early environment? Were there siblings that acted as continuous friends? Was the communication around you positive?
- Moon in Earth Sign and/or Saturn aspect will increase practical orientation. How did the environment make you aware of the real world issues around you? What caused you to grow up so early?
- Moon in Water Sign and/or Neptune increases emotional sensitivity and introversion. How sensitive were your parents? What caused you to hurt, and to be afraid of being hurt?
- Moon – Jupiter aspect will increase expectations for reward. How were you rewarded as a child, and how does it influence your motivation today? What was your mother hoping for in life?
- Moon – Uranus aspect will increase the intensity of the above expressions, as well as adding further element of individuality – What disrupted the flow of mother-child bonding? How can you come back to center?
- Moon – Pluto aspect will increase emotional power, intensity and weight. How powerful was the mother, and how was the power used in relation to the child?
These are small examples of how we may approach the question of early life bonding experience. What I find is that, even in adult life, a challenging relationship situation tends to evoke an emotional experience that is similar to that of my early childhood (e.g. fear of abandonment, or insecurity about self) – it is as if the universe brings up these emotions in order for me to heal them properly.
If you have your own story about a mother-child bonding that is reflected within your horoscope, please feel free to share through emails or comments.
*note that Asian culture in general are more restrained in emotional expression, as the shame-based value system is passed down from generations. In Japanese art forms (such as haiku, noh or sumie), rather than do away with this restraint, they try to work within it by mastering the art of expressing more emotions while saying less.