This is old news, but Capricorns, Sagittarii, and everyone in between flipped out last week and incorrectly blamed NASA. No one has shown that astrology can be used to predict the future or describe what people are like based on their birth dates. NASA goes on to explain what happened.
Some 3, years ago, the ancient Babylonians divided the Zodiac into an even 12 pieces. It varied immensely. NASA added the thirteenth sign, Ophiuchus, and actually noted the dates when the sun actually passes through each sign, rather than dividing them up evenly and arbitrarily.
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On its website, NASA explains how, since the axis of the Earth has tilted over the course of 3, years, the dates are slightly different than they were back then, since the path of the sun through the constellations has changed. However, we had one astrology society participate and they also failed the test. It could be argued that a test involving children is really small if you want to disprove a whole stream of knowledge.
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How about a sample size of an astounding 20 million? That was what Dr David Voas of the University of Manchester looked at when he conducted the largest astrology test the paper was published in March ever on a phenomenon every teenager has wasted her time on—love signs or the idea that couples will be more compatible depending on their zodiac—the Linda Goodman universe.
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He looked at the marriages of 10 million couples. But to devise a test about love signs, he had a problem—there was no unanimity among astrologers on the compatibility of the signs, so what was he going to test? Voas worked around it. The only conclusion to be made was that astrological signs had no bearing on people getting or continuing to remain married. The tests need not always be as large or rigorous to make a point. In the s, a French psychologist and statistician Michael Gauquelin mixed the charts of ten murderers who had been hanged with ten average citizens, and invited astrologers to identify them from the charts.
Predictably, the few astrologers who took up the challenge failed miserably. But in another test, he showed how people are desperate to believe in astrology. He sent people what they thought was a reading of their charts and asked for their response. About 95 per cent of those who replied said that the chart was in agreement with their life and character.
NASA: We Didn't Change Your Zodiac Sign, Astrology Isn't Real
But what they had read was actually the reading of the horoscope of Marcel Petiot, a serial killer. Twenty years later, an ABC anchor pulled a similar trick in public. All felt that the astrologer had got it spot on. In the annals of turncoat astrologers who used science to refute their former profession, the most renowned is Geoffrey Dean. He did a study which had for its premise a simple question: if the arrangement of the stars influence the traits of human beings, then the lives of twins born just a few minutes apart should be alike.
They used the data of another study, unrelated to astrology, which had kept track of 2, twins born, on an average, 4. The children had then been measured again at the ages of 11, 16 and 23 for variables which included IQ, anxiety, height, weight, music, sports, occupation, marital status—characteristics which birth charts claim to predict. But if astrology is scientifically impossible to prove, then why do people believe in it?
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Because it gives them a crutch against the unknowns. But why do honest astrologers practice it? As Smit read through it, he realised that he was so good at his job because he was unconsciously using non-verbal cues from the client to tell them exactly what would make them happy. Smit believes that the majority of astrologers, at least in the West, are like him—men who delude themselves but have no intention of cheating.
Rationalists believe that astrology should not exist because it is not only baseless, but also harmful. Narlikar is among the many quoted by Bhagwanji Raiyani, a Mumbai-based rationalist, who has filed a public interest litigation that seeks, among other things, the banning of all astrological predictions in public.
In January, an ashram in Mumbai celebrated its annual day by inviting astrologers. Raiyani decided to attend. After the speeches, he announced a challenge. The enthusiasm for zodiac-based personality profiling seems undiminished by hundreds of previous studies debunking astrology.
Comprehensive study of 'time twins' debunks astrology - Washington Times
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