If the declination of the moon in a chart is greater than 23 degrees and 27 minutes north or south, this is considered a moon out of bounds.
But, as I’m often asked, what does that mean?
If you or someone you know has a moon out of bounds–found predominantly in the signs of Gemini, Cancer, Sagittarius, and Capricorn–they are likely to exist emotionally in a realm outside of traditional expectations. The emotional outlaw, one with a moon out of bounds tends to make their own rules concerning how to feel about/react to a given stimulus. If living within the bounds of societal constructs, they often tire of dominant trends and experience a pull to escape to a new or remote place. In the city or the country, these are the people who live on society’s fringes in some way or another.
A beautiful trait of the out of bounds moon is a wide scope of awareness, an unimpeded vision of worldly affairs. Having a moon out of bounds lends to active witnessing and questioning of norms, and ultimately existing outside of them. For the person with a moon out of bounds, as the declination increases, so does their cognitive distance from dominant societal trends.
A person with a moon declination of 28 North or South might simply be unable to understand why people behave as they do; however, at 24 North or South, the out of bounds moon person has a closer understanding of society, and an easier time relating to common people. They exist on the fringe, but can traverse this boundary back and forth with comfort. When the moon out of bounds is more distant, a person may be most comfortable in subcultures that deviate from the norm. Clues to these cultures can be found in the Moon’s sign.
If a person with the moon out of bounds finds themself embedded in normative mass culture, or simply at a conventional event, they may attempt to dissolve the distance between themselves and the commoners around them. Perhaps they drown their awareness in alcohol/substances, or become known for repeated Irish exits. In some cases, the moon out bounds transforms into the life of the party, inviting others step outside of norms and see things from their unique perspective.
Viewership is often a back-and-forth trade between out-of-bounds-mooners and society. The moon out of of bounds is always witnessing mass culture from the outside, and just the same, common people often develop fascinations with out of bounds personalities. People enjoy watching the wildcard: he or she says or does things that others find questionable and unpermitted, yet also entertaining and sometimes genius. Famous examples of these characters (charts linked) are Freddie Mercury, Ozzy Osbourne, Amy Winehouse, Tracy Morgan, Cher, Albert Einstein, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Kurt Cobain.
The specific shades of a moon out of bounds are shown by the Moon’s condition in the birth chart. What is your Moon sign, and how does your Moon relate to other planets energetically? Does it reside near the IC, MC, DC, or Ascendant? Is it accompanied by any other planets dwelling out of bounds, or aligned with a specific star?
I would love to help you understand and synthesize these factors, and how your Moon out of bounds fits in with the totality of your chart. Reading charts and teaching astrology are my favorite things to do!
If you’re curious about the out-of-bounds status of your moon or the moon of another, you can check your declination measurements with a simple tool on astro.com. Go to your natal chart and click “Additional tables (PDF)” above your birth data, and look for declinations higher than 23’27” north or south in the Planet Positions table.