Astrology Big Fat Fib or Naught but the God's Honest?

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by SpoiledPrincess, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. SpoiledPrincess

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    I don't believe in astrology, the idea that everyone can roughly fit into one of twelve categories, that their lives were laid out for them before they were born by what position the stars were in can't have any basis in fact. People read newspapers every day, I believe a lot of people check their stars and that in most cases the're written so vaguely they're easy to fit into what's happening to you , in any case as above it's hard to believe that each of those twelve tiny paragraphs are going to apply to roughly a twelfth of the world's population, so I don't believe BUT THEN I read a book on astrology and the list of characteristics belonging to my sign are spot on, and I know a lot of people who find this too. What's your view?
     
  2. jakeatolla

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    Its all Bollocks!!!!

    Seriously, What a load of shit.
     
  3. viking1

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    I don't believe in Astrology in any way shape or form. Including planting by the signs, when fish will bite, or what kind of weather we will have, as in almanacs. Most of that stuff is written so vaguely that it could apply to most people regardless of their sign.
     
  4. rob_just_rob

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    It's all bullshit.
     
  5. SpoiledPrincess

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    My friend has to read her horoscope every day, it kind of gets on my nerves how she can apply the vaguest of terms to the particulars of her life. A birth in the close family can become the birth of the daughter of the friend of the neighbour ten doors down, a trip can become anthing from going shopping to an actual trip, soon can be anything from tomorrow to ten years hence.
     
  6. SpeedoGuy

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    I've observed the positions of the constellations and planets and, well, it just looked like the universe was giving me the finger.
     
  7. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

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    obvious bullshit. There are a lot of things supposedly about my sign that apply to me, but many more that do not, and plenty of traits listed under other signs that apply to me equally as well. Further, I know lots of people born the same month as me that are completely different.
     
  8. Mr. Snakey

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    The planets affect us in amazing ways. Plain and simple. Do i believe in Astrology as to what i should do or dont do on a certain day? No. Then again i am open minded and never just write things off.
     
  9. SpoiledPrincess

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    I don't think it has a shred of credence but I can pick out a whole load of character traits that are supposed to be mine and not very many that aren't. I suppose it's like a form of cold reading, if we see a characteristic we feel is favourable we're not going to deny it.
     
  10. D_Gunther Snotpole

    D_Gunther Snotpole Account Disabled

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    It seems to me that James Randi, the famous debunker of all sorts of popular delusions, once had a university class give details, as far as they could, of the exact time and location of their birth ... and each in the class was duly given an astrological reading.
    Randi asked how many found their readings fairly accurate, and a large majority raised their hands.
    He then asked everyone to pass the sheet on which their reading was printed to the person behind them.
    Within seconds, everyone realized that the sheets they were passed had a reading identical to the sheet they had had initially ... in other words, all the readings had been identical. No one had received a reading specifically reflecting, in astrological terms, the birth information they had given.
    Bogus readings, obviously, but convincing to most.
     
  11. SpoiledPrincess

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    I think it was his site I was looking at recently where people had offered to 'prove' their psychic powers to him, it was an amusing half hour.

    I think astrology is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to theoretical sciences or whatever you call them, astrology itself is pretty harmless but there are 'fringe' medicines, psychics who I feel are a danger to people. Sylvia Brown is one who I can see doing a lot of damage to people who are in vulnerable positions.
     
  12. viking1

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    Yes, I saw that film. I started to mention that, but I figured it wouldn't change anyone's opinion anyway...
     
  13. SpoiledPrincess

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    I see most threads as just chewing the fat viking.
     
  14. jason_els

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    Daily horoscopes are pretty much complete crap.

    However...

    My sister has an uncanny ability to tag people by their sun and moon signs. She doesn't even need to know them long. When I showed her pictures of the guy here whom I had fallen in love with she immediately pegged his sign. "Look at that pose! Typical ___!"

    I think most of the astrology out there is pure crap and so does she. What I'm pretty well convinced of, if only through knowing my sister, is that birth signs do seem to have some validity. In my mind it likely has little to do with the stars and more to do with the times of the year that a person is conceived, gestated, and born. I don't know how to explain the moon signs.

    Oh and if you believe in God, then astrology or any other esoterica can't ever be dismissed for there is always the overriding possibility that astrology is valid because God wills it to be.

    And yes, I'm an archetypal Pisces.
     
  15. the_reverend

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    i'm very much a typical Sagitarrius and i think there are forces and alignments in the universe that create certain phenomena that can be studied, measured and theorized upon. if a certain number of people born during a certain period of time during the year tend to show similar personality traits, there's something there. heck, even the Bible talks about reading the stars. it's when you put too much of your life and belief into it or allow yourself to be guided blindly by it in your life that it becomes dangerous and idiotic. the Bard wrote "the fault, dear Brutus, lies not in the stars but in ourselves." but then, he also wrote "there are more things in Heaven and Earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy..." which is to say i believe there's a kernel of truth in astrology, but not enough to base your entire life around. and the daily horoscopes in newspapers are just bogus, regardless. ;)
     
  16. JustAsking

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    rev,
    I am with you on this one. I am sure there are plenty of subtle environmental effects, birth order effects, birth time of year effects that we haven't noticed or measured yet. I also am very open to the fact that there might be influences on human affairs or the world in general that we can't measure directly.

    But given all that, what I don't believe is that Astrology is based on any empirical observations, nor is it based on any theory that matches empirical observations. So although I believe there are "more things in heaven and earth that are dreamed of in our philosophies", I don't count astrology as an accurate example of that.

    In summary, just because we know that we don't know everything, does not mean necessarily that astrology is accurate.

    Secondly, astrology does qualify as scientific because it is careful to be non-falsifiable. The predictions it makes are not such that one could disprove them. For example it is one thing to say, "Today, you will win the Ohio lottery and receive $347,435,888.04 after taxes at 4:03 PM EST, plus or minus 15.05 minutes." This is a highly falsifiable statement, so it would be considered an good empirical prediction. One can very easily falsify it by waiting around until 4:20 PM EST today and see if any of the detailed predictions were right or wrong.

    On the other end of the spectrum is a prediction like, "You will have a very interesting day." This statement is impossible to falsify, because firstly, it not define interesting in a way that can be measured reliably even if it were done by interview. Secondly, it doesn't even mention who it might who would find your day to be interesting.

    So the first prediction is very falsifiable, and this last one is not falsifiable. The question of how reliable predictions like the second one are is meaningless.

    My claim is that astrology falls much closer to the unfalsifiable end of the spectrum than the other end. Questions about its reliability are therefore meaningless.

    Today's prediction for me:
    You are facing a choice that may be quite a bit bigger than you had thought at first. The good news is that the way should be clear and that the path you finally select will make your life easier.


     
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  17. Randyvoorburg

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    Daily horoscopes in newspapers even serious astrologers won't vouch for, but there are some serious astrologers out there that might be more reliable than others, although there might be more of the "bad" than the "good". I had my profile done by 3 astrologers who were, i'd say...90% spot on, with "hits" that were specific enough for me to give it a little thought. I've subscribed to daily horoscopes online (astrocenter.com) as an experiment, read them at the end of the day as opposed to in the morning, to ensure I'm not affected somehow, and for a while I was quite impressed, especially with the weekly and monthly forecasts. In general, maybe 80% of the time, the theme in focus were indeed the themes that predominated my day, week or month. Even if for instance the horoscope dwelled for the most part on romance, my day would indeed be focused on that aspect more than on other days, when the focus would be on finances. Sure, everybody thinks of romance and finances but the correlation between days and emphasis was better than I expected. Having said that though, I don't think horoscopes would've helped me or made any significant difference in my life anyway. I believe astrology would be more useful in giving insight to your personality (if you manage to find a good astrologer), or the general direction your life is going, but what it does more is to confirm what you already know at some level. Again, that won't make much of a difference especially if you already have a healthy positive attitude in life. Ayurvedic doctors, yogis, or Hindu and Buddhist philosophers would hardly use astrology as an end in itself, which most of us do, but rather more as a tool for other more useful or practical aspects in life like finding an ideal partner, tweaking relationships, finding an ideal job, and even the kind of exercises to do or the kind of diet, but they use a myriad of other disciplines to create harmony and attract favorable events, or hasten your spiritual development or journey, without this as your goal I don't see why one should even get into it. Again it's more the themes and trends that might make a difference if you really feel the need to get help from this, as opposed to the hits in your daily life which you can easily live without. Again, there are many good but probably 4 times more of the bad out there, and unfortunatately most of the good ones might not have websites and probably not in the states. I would read Deepak Chopra's work instead, and if he's in town you might want to ask him his take on Astrology and its real applications.
     
  18. jason_els

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    Legitimate astrologers will admit that astrology can only show tendencies, not absolutes. Within astrology itself there are schools of practitioners who each use different methods of casting and interpretation, though they all agree as to the personality characteristics of the birth signs.

    I believe that culture has a role to play in astrological interpretation as well. If one believes astrology is accurate and then learns about the tendencies of one's sign, then that person may well subconsciously take on those personality traits associated with one's astrological signs; a self-fulfilling prophecy.
     
  19. dong20

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    Leading to....

    ^^^^ Which is pretty much what I was going to write, but you saved me the effort.

    Rubi's example is the most cogent; essentially, that Human capacity for self delusion is boundless. Still, It's part of what we are. But in the context of Jason's comments; if 'believing' that the position of planets and stars at the time of our birth can influence our later behavioural characteristics, and that belief leads to (some) people behaving in ways that fit (some) seemingly arbitrary groupings - who's to say Astrology is entirely bogus.

    Our current science (and culture) is based on cause preceding effect and there always* being a measureable link between them, but that doesn't mean those requirements are or will be necessarily absolute*.

    Science evolves and things that may not fit our current framework of understanding may not necessarily be untrue. After all, it was scientific fact that the Earth was flat, and the centre of the Universe, once.

    * Look at quantum theory, I don't pretend to really understand it in depth but the broad concept, when taken at face value is, well, bonkers.
     
  20. Pirate Wench

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    When I used to read what mine said in the paper each day, the day was already over with and I was back home.....so anything that sounded negative was fairly humorous.

    However, I grew up hearing how stubborn and obstinate I am.....so in junior high when I discovered Astrology and that I was Taurus, it was no surprise to read that Taurus is the most stubborn of all 12 signs.

    Not always a negative trait.....being stubborn can come in quite handy at times.
    My ex once said to me "I hope you never need brain surgery cause there's nothing in existence that can get thru your skull."
    I laughed and said "I'll take that as a compliment !! "


    Once read about Aries "subtle as a mudslide", which is hubby's sign......hilariously accurate.


    But I've never paid, and Will Never pay, anyone to do a daily horoscope for me and I don't believe anything in life is previously mapped out for anyone.
     
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