Standing Apart from Mommy Internet

By Amanda Painter

Most people I know have an ambivalent relationship to their Internet life and social media experience — neither wholly positive nor wholly negative. We’re all hurtling at fiber-optic speeds along a path whose implications for how and where we locate identity, self-esteem and emotional/spiritual nourishment are questionable (when they’re questioned at all).

Photo by Amanda Painter.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

This weekend’s first quarter Moon looks like it will be pushing your awareness of what that dynamic is really about, and what you need to do about it for your own emotional peace.

If you’re someone for whom a day without a selfie that gets 40 “likes” is a day when you feel unseen and unloved and question your life’s worth, pay close attention.

The Sun is in early Taurus, having ingressed Monday. The Moon is in Cancer right now, feeling tuned-in emotionally and especially keen on cozy domestic pursuits for the next couple days. It enters Leo Saturday at 9:13 am EDT.

By 7:55 pm Saturday night, the Leo Moon will make a right angle to the Sun (90 degrees). In the sky, you’ll see half of the Moon illuminated.

A first quarter Moon generally has the quality of feeling like a wave starting to build: it’s not cresting yet (that would be the Full Moon), but you can use its “push” energy to move projects into gear. It’s also about integrating what you learn as you turn that corner.

This particular first quarter Moon happens to be a T-square. Exactly across from the Moon and square to the Sun, asteroid Ceres is in early Aquarius. This is the planet of motherhood and agriculture/nourishment (among other things) in the sign of elite groups, crystallization of ideas, and technology.

The Sun in Taurus often relates to material possessions, but it also has a super-earthy, grounded, sensual/sexual side that is very tuned into the body’s experience. Leo represents children — along with pride, leadership and heart — and a Leo Moon wants to be visible in all its feelings.

Put these three pieces together (Sun, Moon, Ceres), and see if on Saturday you notice yourself wanting to stand out and apart from the “parental” nature of the digital collective. Think about it: it’s like we’re all running to “Mommy Internet” for approval with each Facebook status update we post about whatever we just experienced/thought/saw/ate/plan to do.

But the Leo Moon (with help from asteroid Juno nearby) says those unmet inner-child needs won’t really be satisfied there. The Internet, while it can help facilitate real contact, is not itself the kind of face-to-face, voice-to-voice, body-to-body contact we’ve become hard-wired to need over many thousands of years.

When we rely on the Internet for that, we just get more of the “detached parent” thing — represented beautifully by Ceres in Aquarius — that may have caused us self-esteem problems in the first place. (Or, alternately, it’s like a parent with rigid ideas about how you should fit in.)

Note that the open leg of this T-square is in Scorpio. If you feel a little destabilized by this astrology, watch out for toxic emotional tendencies: envy and resentment towards others’ seemingly vibrant lives (as selectively represented online); vindictiveness in response to those people; any of these emotions turned back on yourself.

Scorpio is a sign of potential deep transformation if you can get past the surface-level personality stuff — but transformation implies movement. Movement means not camping out in self-righteous vindictiveness or a self-pity party but, rather, moving through it with awareness to a deeper understanding about how to meet your needs constructively. It’s a choice.

For help, look to that Taurus Sun, which equals your adult, mature ego consciousness. It’s trying to tell you that your body consciousness will give you the most real and useful feedback — that is, your senses in contact with the actual outdoors and with people in the flesh; how your body feels inside and out. In comparison, how truly nourishing is the “food” of the collective robot (online life)?

A Leo Moon square a Taurus Sun is trying to get you to say, “I did it my way” (a la Sinatra). “My way” in this case probably means offline, in the tangible world. And hell — with a Taurus Sun, singing Sinatra to a friend (or your flower bed) might not be a bad idea.

13 thoughts on “Standing Apart from Mommy Internet

  1. P. Sophia

    Thank you Amanda. Great piece. This is the root of the same idea I was trying to express in response to Len’s article of Tuesday. The controlled environment for immediate self gratification, primarily through social media barraging, is litterally getting out of control. And, the faulse self worth, and value for positioning is an addiction which is negatively affecting intimacy in real time relationship.

  2. Jennifer

    Thank you Amanda – been re-evaluating my relationship with the internet lately, and finding I am less and less invested in the one-sided, somewhat emotionally draining interactions that we have.
    I am learning to limit it to research (as needed), learning (lots of astrology lately), and correspondence. And avoiding Facebook (junk-food-like communication).
    Thankfully, I spent the afternoon cleaning out my rental apartment after awaking at 12:23 from a nap (hello Cancer moon). I have Saturday as a scheduled garden day. Thankful for the Taurus, Leo combo to spur me on then.
    Good to feel connected to the cosmos… a more attuned and nourishing mother than the internet, for sure.

  3. Len Wallick

    Amanda: You have adroitly located and skillfully captured an important crux in our astrology. This will be no ordinary lunar first quarter. Many things will turn upon this first quarter Moon. You have shown us. Love that fern photo too.

  4. Amy Callahan

    the argument here made me think of the term “nanny state” — i don’t think we’re to the point yet where all our choices are made for us but with our concerns about consent and trolling, genuine abusiveness on the internet. more positively, trendliness=godliness i think we are getting less personal choice on the internet, which might be leading to a sense of dissatisfaction. i certainly have more satisfaction with acting spontaneously in “physical space” but am bound to get a squirmy reaction (not sure is this is better than no, unknown, or false reactions). when people do meet you these days with authenticity it seems they are thinking hard to bring the creative approach in, like we’re all in a small section of a very big china shop. at least that’s what i observe even down to simple price adjustments at the book store.

    children <9-10 seem carefree, however. also: able to rebel and express their frustration. the fixed energy you describe for this weekend so tense and complicated about getting needs of delight and nourishment met. Ceres in Aquarius bound to come with higher level learning opportunities. it's a good deal… Scorpio can go missing that's fine by me for this T-square!

  5. Michael Mayes

    I’ve seen this exact thing in my community about people wanting validation through social media, and through people and things outside themselves. People, and by that I mean a few of my Facebook friends, recognize this about themselves, and posted about it just within the past few days. One of them said, “I know other people feel this way.” The awareness is spreading. It can be a little embarrassing to notice when I act a certain way to get someone’s approval.

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