Moms, have you ever wondered if your children were better off with the babysitter than you? Scientific studies point to the overwhelming value of a mother's love, hugs, support and protection. Nannies, babysitters and relatives can be wonderful but never as wonderful as a Mom.
Each time a mother is responsive to her child's needs the attachment between mother and child strengthens. If all is well, the baby's eyes make contact with mom's, and the baby sinks into mother's body when held. A mother's touch, words and gaze creates a profound intimacy which establishes mom as a secure base, from which the child will later venture forth into the world.
Our Mother, Our Moon
The astrological Moon is representative of our mother, but beyond that, the Moon symbolizes our most basic survival needs. It is our instinctive response to situations and represents those feelings, moods and internal physical rhythms that nature designed for our protection. It is our gut reaction to what our five physical senses perceive, and acts as a sixth sense. The sign of the Moon defines the type of environment and emotional response we subconsciously know will provide security and protection.
Having no other way to express or protect themselves, infants resonate emphatically to the sign of their Moon as a source of comfort and safety. Thus, Mother is the most important person in an infant's life and the Moon is, without a doubt, the most important planet in an infant's chart. The sign of the Moon describes the type of emotional response the infant needs from mom to feel comfortable, safe, secure and loved.
Guardian of Emotions
Ideally, during the first weeks of an infant's life, as appropriate kinds and numbers of sensations are exchanged between infant and mom, the infant feels safe and secure enough to allow its innate emotional nature to emerge from the unconscious. (Mom, as used here, can also refer to any consistent primary caregiver.)
Long before baby has words to describe its reactions, can think consciously or act independently, subtle emotional exchanges between mother and infant provide protection by weaving meaning into the infant's innumerable perceptions. However, without conscious thought, the ability to speak or the physical capacity to act upon emotions, infants rightly expect mom to become their Moon, guardian of emotions and provider of comfort, safety and protection. In her ability to echo, mimic and respond appropriately to her baby's unique emotional nature, mom is saying I see who you are, validate you and will protect you."
However, infants have different ways of reacting to the same situation. Each has a way of relating to the world that feels safe, easy, comfortable and right for them. The problem for mom is knowing and understanding just where her newborn's emotional sensibilities lie.
Even the most attentive and caring mother can have difficulty because of her own innate temperament, expectations and preconceived notions. But, a simple understanding of an infant's astrological Moon can help mom connect to her baby by tailoring early experiences to fit the infant's unique emotional nature and create an environment that tells baby all is right in its world.
Emotions Trump Thought
In recent years, various avenues of scientific research have proved emotions, not thought, to be the common thread interwoven throughout the complex tapestry of the personality. Commenting on this finding in his book The Growth of the Mind and the Endangered Origins of Intelligence, *Stanley Greenspan, M.D. writes, "Emotions shape not only human intelligence but also an individual's psychological defenses and coping strategies, indeed the entire structure of the personality."
Infancy and toddler-hood are now seen as the time when the core of an individual's ability to think, feel and relate to others is being formed, and when important protective factors such as intelligence, trust and empathy can be lost. Possibly the most important information to come out of this research is just how important the infant's first experiences are to the individual's entire life.
Astrology has always placed important emphasis on an individual's Moon, and thus emotions and mom. Now, as a direct result of their scientific research on emotions, developmental experts are also encouraging parents to see their infants for the special individuals they are from birth, and deliberately introduce the world in such a way that maximizes pleasure and minimizes frustrations. Yet, these same experts can only recommend this be accomplished through trial and error accompanied by persistent and diligent observation.
An infant's horoscope is available the moment of birth. Using the infant Moon as a guide, parents can begin at birth to create an emotionally rich and appropriate relationship with their infant, setting the stage for the baby to become the self-assured child, who will become the adult who enjoys a happy, fulfilled and independent life.
*Stanley Greenspan, M.D. is a clinical professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at George Washington University School of Medicine and the author of numerous books, including Building Healthy Minds and The Child With Special Needs.