Does the First Quarter Moon Affect Mood?

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Does the First Quarter Moon Affect Mood?

Have you ever noticed a sudden shift in your mood during the first quarter of the moon’s phase? Many people believe that lunar cycles can influence human emotions and behaviors. While some consider it a deeply rooted myth or superstition, others argue that there may be some scientific basis to support the idea. In this blog post, we will explore the relationship between the first quarter moon and mood to determine if there is any truth to this widespread belief.

Understanding Lunar Phases

Before diving into the impact of the first quarter moon on mood, let’s quickly recap the different lunar phases. The lunar cycle consists of eight distinct phases, which are:

  1. New Moon
  2. Waxing Crescent
  3. First Quarter
  4. Waxing Gibbous
  5. Full Moon
  6. Waning Gibbous
  7. Last Quarter
  8. Waning Crescent

Every phase lasts approximately 7.4 days, resulting in a complete lunar cycle of about 29.5 days. The first quarter moon occurs when the moon is one-quarter of the way through its orbit around the earth, appearing as a half-moon shape.

The History of Lunar Influence Beliefs

Beliefs in the moon’s influence on human behavior and emotions have been deeply ingrained in various cultures throughout history. Ancient civilizations, such as the Babylonians, Greeks, and Romans, attributed certain qualities and characteristics to different lunar phases. Synchronized rituals, calendars, and agriculture practices were often influenced by lunar cycles.

One of the most prevalent beliefs was that the moon affected human moods and emotions. People associated the full moon with increased lunacy and mental disturbances, leading to terms like “lunatic” and “moonstruck.” While these beliefs were primarily rooted in folklore and not backed by scientific evidence, they have left a lasting impact on our cultural understanding of lunar influence.

The Scientific Perspective

Scientifically speaking, the relationship between the moon’s phases and human mood remains largely unproven. Numerous studies have attempted to uncover a correlation, but the results have been inconclusive, often contradictory.

A 1985 study conducted by researcher Rotton and colleagues found no significant difference in mental health institution admissions during the different lunar phases. This study was one of the largest of its kind, examining data from over 70 mental health institutions and more than 17,000 patients.

However, another study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry in 1984 by researchers Sherin and colleagues suggested a possible link between lunar phases and human mood. They analyzed data from two distinct populations, finding an increase in aggressive behavior during the full moon.

Despite these conflicting findings, some scientists argue that the moon’s gravitational pull, which affects ocean tides, could potentially influence brain activity. This theory is based on the fact that the human body contains a high percentage of water. However, the impact of gravitational forces on such a small scale remains speculative, and no direct evidence supports this claim.

Potential Explanations for Perceived Mood Changes

While scientific research has failed to substantiate a direct link between the first quarter moon and mood, there are several potential explanations for the perception of mood changes during this lunar phase:

Potential Explanation Description
Confirmation Bias People may selectively recall instances where their mood aligned with their belief in lunar influence, reinforcing their convictions.
Astropsychology Believers argue that an individual’s astrological sign, in combination with the lunar phase, leads to mood shifts. However, this theory lacks scientific evidence.
External Factors Other environmental factors, such as seasonal changes, weather conditions, or personal circumstances, may coincidentally align with the first quarter moon, contributing to perceived mood changes.

The Power of Belief

While the scientific evidence supporting the influence of the first quarter moon on mood remains scarce, it is essential to recognize the power of belief. The placebo effect demonstrates that individuals can experience real physiological and psychological changes based solely on their beliefs. If someone firmly believes that the first quarter moon affects their mood, they may genuinely experience corresponding emotions.

Furthermore, the moon has a significant cultural and symbolic value, representing mystery, femininity, and the ebb and flow of life. These associations, deeply entrenched in our collective consciousness, may contribute to our perception of lunar influence.


Although ancient beliefs and cultural traditions have attributed significant influence to the moon’s phases, scientific research remains inconclusive regarding the impact of the first quarter moon on human mood. While some individuals may experience mood shifts during this lunar phase, it is essential to approach this topic with a critical mindset and consider alternative explanations, such as confirmation bias and external factors.

The fascination with lunar influence on human behavior and emotions will likely continue, with ongoing studies striving to unravel the mysteries of the cosmos. Ultimately, whether or not you believe the first quarter moon affects mood is a personal choice guided by science, cultural heritage, and individual experiences.

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Does the First Quarter Moon Affect Mood?