The Pseudoscience of Astrology

Topics: Pseudoscience

Astrology is defined as the belief that there is a relationship between visible astronomical phenomena and events in our world. It works under the principle that planets and humans are conjoined and changes in one result in changes in the other. The origins of Astrology date as far back as 25,000 years ago when humans started to measure, record, and predict seasonal changes regarding astronomical cycles. There is often a mix-up between Astrology and Astronomy as Astrology was first considered a discipline under Astronomy but was later differentiated.

Astronomy is the scientific study of celestial matter outside the Earth’s atmosphere as well as encompassing the development of the universe, while Astrology works under no verifiable evidence and vague predictions that could very well apply to anyone. As Astronomer Carl Sagan said “To the Astronomers, Mars is a place as real as the Earth, a world awaiting exploration. But the Astrologers see Mars as a warrior, the instigator of quarrels, violence, and destruction… But yet virtually every newspaper in America has a daily column on Astrology, almost none even have a weekly column on Astronomy.

Horoscopes, a popular subset of astrology, assign individuals into a category based on their date of birth; it describes their personalities and interests and gives them so called-called or advice to follow daily. But if there’s no proof of such predictions, then why do people listen to them? Part of it could be attributed to the power of suggestion, the generalized advice given, and the fact that people tend to remember what was right and exclude the incorrect parts because the correct parts were what stood out to them.

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NASA has demonstrated that the planets cannot exert the gravitational influence required to influence someone’s life. In 1985, Shawn Carlson administered a double-blind chart matching test in which he challenged 28 astrologers to match over 100 natal charts to psychological profiles, the concluded that the predictions based on natal astrology were no better than chance, ad that the testing “clearly refutes the astrological hypothesis.” In 1955 Michel Gauquelin said that he had found positive correlations between the diurnal positions of some of the planets and success in professions, but when scientists attempted to replicate the claim, they found no statistical evidence, and attributed the effect to selective bias on Gauquelin’s part, accusing him of attempting to persuade them to add or delete names from their study. Today, approximately 31% of Americans believe in astrology and 39% consider it scientific.

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The Pseudoscience of Astrology. (2022, Jun 17). Retrieved from

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