The debate about whether astrology actually works or not is divided mainly between the scientists and the believers. Most scientists state that astrology does not work, but those who believe in this concept will disagree. However, neither party is really wrong.
Astrology refers to the concept that the alignment of the moons, planets, and stars affect the mood, environment, personality, and perhaps even the future of every individual. Most people are aware of their zodiac signs that were set according to their date of birth. Even if not everyone believes in them, they might have read their own horoscopes based on these signs at some point. Let’s have a look at whether astrology actually does ‘work’ and to what extent:
Orientation of Astronomical Bodies
The position and alignment of astronomical bodies like the sun or the planets doesn’t really affect anyone’s lives directly, but they might have an effect on the seasons. There are also electromagnetic disturbances caused by solar flares and the gravitation of planets; these can hinder satellites and cause blackout, which affect our daily lives.
Similarly, the placement of the moon at any time will cause the ocean tides to rise high or stay low. In this way, the moon can have an adverse effect on the livelihood of a fisherman, for example.
However, all these effects don’t come under the beliefs of astrology. Scientifically, the claim that astronomical bodies can affect our lives in some other way than changing the weather is false. There have been several studies that disprove this concept.
Studies that Disprove Astrology
We can look up the works of Peter Hartmann, who studied more than 4000 people with his collaborator and could find no link between personality traits and a person’s birth date.
There are also the findings of Shawn Carlson, who collected the predictions of around 28 astrologers and tested how accurate their statements were. Before he conducted this experiment, though, he streamlined a method so that it was deemed scientifically sound by several scientists independently of each other. What’s more, every astrologer involved in the experiment was in agreement that the test was just and fair.
At the end of it all, the findings were published in the prestigious journal called ‘Nature’. They stated that the astrologers weren’t at all accurate in making predictions about the future. Random guesses would have produced the same results. Fundamental science also agreed with these findings.
Is Astrology Just an Entertainment?
So now that we know how astrology doesn’t have a steady foundation, are these beliefs and the act of reading horoscopes just a way to have fun? If so, is that kind of fun just a harmless one or can it be used in a wrong way?
Many people would vehemently argue that astrology does have a lot to offer. The same people might also ask ‘why do we have lines on our hands?’ and say that these lines might tell us our personality and future as well. They might point at the findings of Nostradamus, a French astrologer who lived in the 1500s, and claim that he predicted many future occurrences. However, even these findings don’t really prove that astrology can tell us the future or even let us know what kind of a personality someone has. After all, it’s pretty hard to categorize everyone in the world into a specific set of traits.
Some might claim that even if horoscopes aren’t really true, they do make people feel better. In fact, a person might even have a better day than usual if they read a positive horoscope about them. If they read closely, however, they might see that the horoscope for each sign is more or less applicable to most people. The wordings are so general that anyone reading them will feel like they’re being directly addressed and guided according to their personality and perhaps even their fate.
So while horoscopes might be able to make a person feel better and act more confidently, it’s more of a placebo effect that anything else. This occurs when the belief of a person makes them see the result they want. In some cases, for example, an empty capsule or sugar pill instead of medication might be able to make a person feel physically better. This isn’t because the placebo pill had anything to offer, but that the belief is working some benefit–perhaps the result was due to reduced stress or more positive thoughts.
The placebo effect is scientifically proven, so we can rely on this concept more than on the beliefs of astrology. In order for any new drug to be approved, it must be shown to have better effects than a placebo.
It’s true that a significant percentage of Americans believe that astrology is at least a bit scientific. However, they might be confusing this concept with the field of astronomy or have just been inculcated to believe that horoscopes are real. Some might even make the excuse of being a Scorpio, Aries, or other zodiac sign when they’re called out on some negative behavior.
At the end of the day, it’s best to step up and take responsibility for your own behavior and actions. Following zodiac signs and horoscopes might be fun for a while, but they’re not reliable factors in guiding anyone towards a successful life. If someone really wants to live their best life and gain benefit from their time, they’d be better off with scientifically proven methods. Take a walk or get in some other exercise on a daily basis instead of reading the horoscope; it’s more likely to have a positive effect on your body and your life.