23 July 2008

The Belief in Astrology

Why do people who don't believe in god or gods choose to state their 'astrological sign' and 'zodiac year'? "Oh, I'm a true Capricorn' or 'I was born in the year of the rat'. 

These systems are so discredited as bogus it is just not funny. Yet people believe them. There's a whole industry out there raking in shed-loads of money on a daily basis and what are they actually giving people? Fabricated rubbish. And still people believe it.

If you want evidence of where we are going with this then read this article from the Telegraph newspaper (a UK daily high-end newspaper):

Can astrology really help predict the direction of financial markets? Danny Penman talks to two business people who believe the answer is yes.
Christeen Skinner blinks at the screen of her computer and takes another slurp of coffee. It is half past seven in the morning and she's preparing for a crucial meeting with the chief executive of the High and Mighty fashion chain.  
Apart from the black cat dozing on her lap, the only clue to Skinner's occupation as an astrologer is a copy of an ephemeris - a table of the predicted positions of celestial bodies - that lies open at a page marked "Mercury March 25th".
"The financial crisis has ensured that I'm busier than ever," says Skinner. "People in the City need to know what is just around the corner. I can help with that."
Skinner is one of a growing, albeit secretive, network of astrologers who work for seemingly conservative British institutions such as high street banks, City investment funds and retailers. Desperate to avoid financial meltdown and to spot fashions and consumer trends before they start, these institutions have turned to the planets to divine the future.
[Read the complete article here]

Okay, you are entitled to believe what you want and spend your money how you choose, but do you really believe it? Are you happy that financial institutions are playing the money markets with your money based on these bogus ideas?

I had a friend who was a hard-core non-believer, he dropped out of his degree course, focused on being an artist, spent time reading, watching lots of television, being a free agent with multiple partners (who all knew his philosophy on monogamy - not for him) and was a general sharp-thinking, deep, truly funny man. We hadn't seen each other for a while and after meeting up again he came to spend the weekend with myself and my partner at the time. 

The first morning he trotted off the the local shops for his newspaper the Daily Mail.  He returned and the first thing he did was read his horoscope for the day - three times - out loud. We had a discussion about horoscopes and he revealed that he cannot do anything major for the day without reading his horoscopes. Well, you could have knocked me down with a feather!  I sort of stumbled and stuttered into a conversation as if I had just been told he was a serial murderer. I suddenly saw him through different eyes. My friend was confident and bold and didn't care what people thought about how he lived his life or his dress sense, yet couldn't do anything meaningful with his day until he had read his horoscopes. 

Being a frank person and him being a true friend I just had to try and understand what was going on with him that he felt the need to cling onto his horoscopes. The Daily Mail?- Jonathan Cainer? Awful, nasty tabloid junk with horoscopes thrown in. I didn't labour my thoughts too much as we still had a great weekend but it certainly caught me off guard. 

Do you believe in them and if so why? Are you like my friend and have to read them each day before you start your day? Do you take their 'advice' and alter the decisions you make based on their predictions? I know some people who get them sent via text to their mobile phones and actually pay money, hard-cash, for the service.

I suppose you can be atheist and still believe in astrology and such like but it just doesn't fit well with me somehow....


Original GRITS said...

I have no belief in astrology or in any of the plethora of gods created by man since the beginning of time. I live my life according to my own internal moral code, knowing what is wrong and right, and trusting in my "gut" feelings.

Astrology is nothing more than an antiquated idea based on an ancient sun/star worshiping religion. I don't get how anyone could base life decisions on the words of these charlatans!

But then again, I also feel the same way about religion in general. In my point of view, it all (every religion I've studied and I've studied many) is pretty silly to base your life on.

Peace & Love!

Starry Night Astrology said...

Your article repeatedly claims that astrology is "bogus". What evidence do you have that it is?

People absolutely have the right to believe what they wish. However, I assure you that whatever "evidence" that is currently bandied about that astrology has no validity has been discredited itself. What is left is that your belief or disbelief in astrology as a working system. I submit that a belief is not a fact, nor should it presented as such.

Starry Night Astrology said...

Oh yeah, the "raking in tons of money" thing. I wish.

ccch said...

I think though there's something about "water signs" that drains my energy.......

Mortaine said...

I know my signs (Leo and year of the Tiger), and I know that, astrologically, when I tell people "I'm a Leo" they are utterly not surprised-- apparently, I have the quintessential Leo personality.

But I don't really think that when and where I was born has much to do with that, and I certainly don't believe that what the stars are doing today has anything to do with how tomorrow will go.

The only astrological sign that matters to me is the big comet hurtling toward this rock.

Christine said...

I agree with Stary Night... there is no proof either way that astrology is real or not. It is a belief system, like any other. I do believe in Astrology, mostly because it has proven useful to me. No, I don't use it to make my decisions for me, anymore than I use the bible, the internet, or any other tool of information. It does have an impact on my life, but everything in the universe has an impact on everyone.

Amber said...

That's a sticky spot.

I'm not an atheist, persay. I believe that there is something out there that started this whole shebang, which has been unfolding since they clicked over that first domino or spoke a magic word or sneezed or whatever. I've seen more strange things than can be attributed to current known science, so I leave my options open.

I feel the same way about astrology. I think people place too much belief and energy into it, but I have seen correlations and I have guessed many people's signs correctly based on their actions and innate body language. There is a grain of truth to it, but I don't completely believe it, especially not the sort of horoscopes seen in tabloids.

I use tarot and other divination tools to good effect, and will until I can either explain it away as an innate ability I have and don't need to use the tools anymore, or someone figures out how it works. ;)

I dig your blog, Miss Ma'am. I just subscribed to it. Hope all is well and keep up the good work!

Doctor said...

Well, the ancient Sun/Star religions were moreso a way for people to tell the length of the day throughout the year. So we could thrive and plan food, clothing, shelter a little better. Was never really about condemnation or how good a day you would have tomorrow.

I will say that there is some credibility in astrology if you believe in the relative nature of things. Being that the existence of everything else, makes you who you are (think sociology). Thus the position of the moon might affect how you react emotionally to situations this year. The whole "gods and goddesses" stuff was just folklore added for making it a story instead of "science".

There is a certain "science" if you will to aspects of astrology. I used to be an opposer as well. Ancient history shows us religion meant something totally different back then. Sun moon and stars wasn't meant to tell you to talk to your crush today or nothing like that. Moreso that it was time to pack it in early this time of year because the days would be getting shorter. That kinda thing.