The dynamics of Jahn–Teller systems has recently been discussed in terms of generalized electronic charge and current densities in nuclear‐coordinate space. The introduction of the electronic phase as a function of both electronic and nuclear coordinates, in addition to the electronic density, was a crucial component of this formulation. Here, a densitybased treatment of Born couplings is derived from first‐principles quantum mechanics beyond the Born–Oppenheimer approximation. Because of the degenerate electronic configuration of a Jahn–Teller molecule, there are an infinite number of ways in which the charge distribution can be oriented for the same energy, leading to a vanishing bond hardness for the molecule in the symmetric nuclear configuration. Further, the moving nuclear framework serves as the perturbation necessary to define the orientation of the charge density, leading to unhindered rotation of the charge cloud. This leads to the dynamical Jahn–Teller problem, namely, the coupling of electronic and nuclear motions through the Born coupling terms. Applications to superconductivity theory are discussed. © 1995 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Copyright © 1995 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.