Here you will be informed about the freaky alternative science facts and researches from all over the World and Outer Space. We will publish our researches in alternative science field to open some of the main mysteries of the Humanity: ASTROLOGY
Astrology, in its traditional form, is a type of divination based on the theory that the positions and movements of celestial bodies (stars, planets [except the one you are born on or those in other solar systems], Sun, and Moon) at the time of birth profoundly influence a person's life. Some forms of astrology claim that terrestrial events such as natural disasters are predicted by various celestial arrangements or events. Given the innumerable relationships of celestial items, it would be surprising if one could not find some correlation between earthly events like tornadoes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, hurricanes, droughts, fires, etc., and an arrangement of planets in relation to the Sun or Moon. Correlation does not prove causality, but it is good enough for most astrologers.
Astrology was, in its beginnings, a genuine search for knowledge - an attempt to find, in the configurations of the stars and planets, some meaning for humans that might enable them to ascertain something about the future, as if that future were written, obscurely but gloriously, in the heavenly patterns that nightly present themselves to observers.
There were two divisions to astrology at first. Horary astrology dealt with measuring motions of the stars and planets and thereby predicting their configurations. This division eventually grew into astronomy. Horary astrology was essential for performing the second type, judiciary astrology, the popular aspect that offered - and still offers - predictions and trends to the clients.
Only five planets - Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn - were known to the early observers. Since they were named after gods and were believed to represent the actual bodies of the gods, the movements of those objects against the background of mythical figures represented by the constellations seemed important. It was that relationship of god to ìsignî that was the basis for the notion that the fortunes of humanity were to be found by examining the night skies.
In 1781, astronomer Sir William Herschel spotted an object moving in the sky and originally thought it was a comet but later realized its planetary nature. The object was the gas giant Uranus.
In 1846, another discovery was confirmed, the eighth planet in the solar system. This was an ingenious piece of work combining mathematics and observation. Astronomers noticed some peculiarities in the way Uranus moved through the sky and, after painstaking observation, concluded it must have been the gravitational tug from another object causing its curious motion. The position of the new planet was calculated from the movements of Uranus and subsequently identified telescopically. Neptune had been found. [Discovery News]
The interesting thing here is that until the scientific discovery of the two new planets, astrologers had not once mentioned them. Following their discovery they found their way into astrological predictions. If they had a real impact on our lives, surely astrologers should have discovered them or at least known they were out there before astronomers?
Look at the statistics and you'll see that there are more people now than ever before who read their star signs in the daily news. We live in a time that is more scientifically aware than any other period in history and yet people still believe the stars and planets can determine their fate.
Astrologers now even have their own college. Kepler College was established in Seattle, Washington, in 1999 and has been granted the power to issue both bachelor's and master's degrees in astrological studies.
According to a 2005 Gallup poll, 25% believe in astrology, a statistic that has remained steady for the past 15 years. Its popularity and longevity are, of course, irrelevant to the truth of astrology in any of its forms. The irrelevant appeal to tradition is a fallacy in reasoning in which one argues that a practice or a belief is justifiable simply because it has a long and established history.
"Astrology has no relevance to understanding ourselves or our place in the cosmos. Modern advocates of astrology cannot account for the underlying basis of astrological associations with terrestrial affairs, have no plausible explanation for its claims, and have not contributed anything of cognitive value to any field of the social sciences." - Ivan Kelly
The most popular form of traditional Western astrology is sun sign astrology, the kind found in the horoscopes of many daily newspapers. A horoscope is an astrological forecast. The term is also used to describe a map of the zodiac at the time of oneís birth. The zodiac is divided into twelve zones of the sky, each named after the constellation that originally fell within its zone (Taurus, Leo, etc.). The apparent paths of the Sun, the Moon, and the major planets all fall within the zodiac. Because of the precession of the equinoxes, the equinox and solstice points have each moved westward about 30 degrees in the last 2,000 years. Thus, the zodiacal constellations named in ancient times no longer correspond to the segments of the zodiac represented by their signs. In short, had you been born at the same time on the same day of the year 2,000 years ago, you would have been born under a different sign.
Taking the concept of the signs of the zodiac, if someone was born in July it means that when they were born the sun was in Cancer. However, this is incorrect. Originally yes, the sun would have been in Cancer when the star/sun charts were produced about 2000 years ago. But in reality, the wobble of the Earth on its axis - which we call "precession" - has led to them being all out of sync.
According to most astrologers, there are 12 signs of the zodiac. This is incorrect. In fact, there should be 13 signs, not 12. Ophiuchus is the 'new' one yet for some curious reason I have never come across an Ophiuchian.
Precession of the equinox is caused by the fact that the axis of the Earth's rotation (which causes day and night) and the axis of the Earth's revolution around the Sun (which marks the passage of each year) are not parallel. They are 23 1/2 degrees away from lining up; that is, the Earth's axis of rotation is tilted. This tilt also causes our seasons, a fact that Ptolemy did understand but that many people do not understand even today. Ptolemy understood that the rotation axis of the Earth was slowly precessing, or moving in a circle, with an angular radius of 23 1/2 degrees with a period of around 26,000 years. He deduced this from comparisons of data taken by the ancient Sumerians 2,000 years before his time. He did not understand what was pushing the precession, but he did understand the motion. We now realize that the Sun is rotating with a period of around 30 days and that this causes the Sun to bulge at the equator, which causes a torque to be exerted on the top like motion of the Earth's day and night cycle. There is also a small 18.6-year variation caused by the Moon's orbit around the Earth, and the Moon also has a small effect on precession; however, the Sun's equatorial bulge is the main cause of the precession of the equinox, which is why your sign listed in the newspaper, by Sidney Omar for instance, in most cases is removed by one sign from the modern, actual position of the Sun at your birth.
The modern signs as listed here are further complicated when their boundaries are those of the current constellations. A neater way of dividing the signs would be to divide the ecliptic into 30-degree slices, as Ptolemy did, but to keep the slices centered on the star patterns. This would make the time interval for the signs more nearly 30 days each and eliminate the [13th] sign of Ophiuchus [off ee oo' kus], but your modern sign would still differ by one sign from the tradition designations.
On a moonless night when the only clouds to be seen are the Magellanic Clouds of the Milky Way, go out to a place far from street light pollution, lie on the grass and gaze out at the stars. What are you seeing? Superficially you notice constellations, but a constellation is of no more significance than a patch of curiously shaped damp on the bathroom ceiling. Note, accordingly, how little it means to say something like "Uranus moves into Aquarius". Aquarius is a miscellaneous set of stars all at different distances from us, which have no connection with each other except that they constitute a (meaningless) pattern when seen from a certain (not particularly special) place in the galaxy (here). A constellation is not an entity at all, not the kind of thing that Uranus, or anything else, can sensibly be said to "move into".
The shape of a constellation, moreover, is ephemeral. A million years ago our Homo erectus ancestors gazed out nightly (no light pollution then, unless it came from that species' brilliant innovation, the camp fire) at a set of very different constellations (see picture). A million years hence, our descendants will see yet other shapes in the sky, and their astrologers (if our species has not grown up and sent them packing long since) will be fabricating their oracles on the basis of a different zodiac.
As they, and we, orbit the sun, planets will on occasion appear to reverse their direction from our point of view. But these occasions have no significance. From a third planet they would be seen to "go retrograde" at different times. Planets do not really "wander", and certainly not remotely near any constellations, which are the distant backdrops of our viewpoint. Even if "going retrograde" or "moving into Aquarius" were real phenomena, something that planets actually do, what influence could they possibly have on human events? A planet is so far away that its gravitational pull on a new-born baby would be swamped by the gravitational pull of the doctor's paunch.
No, we can forget planets going retrograde, and we can forget constellations except as a convenient way of finding our way around. What else are we seeing when we gaze up at the night sky? One thing we are seeing is history. When you look at the great galaxy in Andromeda you are seeing it as it was 2.3 million years ago and Australopithecus stalked the African savannah. You are looking back in time. Shift your gaze a few degrees to the nearest bright star in the constellation of Andromeda and you are seeing Mirach, but much more recently, as it was when Wall Street crashed. The sun, when you see it, is only eight minutes ago. But look through a large telescope at the Sombrero Galaxy and you are seeing a trillion suns as they were when your tailed ancestors peered shyly through the canopy and India collided with Asia to raise the Himalayas. A collision on a larger scale, between two galaxies in Stephan's Quintet, is shown to us at a time when on Earth dinosaurs were dawning and the trilobites fresh dead.
Astrology is probably the most widely practiced superstition and most popular Tooth Fairy science in the world today. Nevertheless, there are many who defend astrology by pointing out how accurate professional horoscopes are. Astrology ìworks,î it is said, but what does that mean? Basically, to say astrology works means that there are a lot of satisfied customers. There are a lot of satisfied customers because thanks to subjective validation, it is easy to shoehorn any event to fit a chart. To say astrology "works" does not mean that astrology is accurate in predicting human behavior or events to a degree significantly greater than mere chance There are many satisfied customers who believe that their horoscope accurately describes them and that their astrologer has given them good advice. Such evidence does not prove astrology so much as it demonstrates the Forer effect and confirmation bias. There have been several studies that have shown that people will use selective thinking to make any chart they are given fit their preconceived notions about themselves and their charts. Many of the claims made about signs and personalities are vague and would fit many people under many different signs. Even professional astrologers, most of whom have nothing but disdain for sun sign astrology, canít pick out a correct horoscope reading at better than a chance rate. Yet, astrology continues to maintain its popularity, despite the fact that there is scarcely a shred of scientific evidence in its favor. Even the former First Lady of the United States, Nancy Reagan, and her husband, Ronald, consulted an astrologer while he was the leader of the free world, demonstrating once again that astrologers have more influence than the stars do.
Other tests show that it hardly matters what a horoscope says, as long as the subject feels the interpretations were done for him or her personally. A few years ago French statistician Michel Gauquelin sent the horoscope for one of the worst mass murderers in French history to 150 people and asked how well it fit them. Ninety-four percent of the subjects said they recognized themselves in the description.
The American conjuror James Randi recounts in his book Flim Flam how as a young man he briefly got the astrology job on a Montreal newspaper, making up the horoscopes under the name Zo-ran. His method was to cut out the forecasts from old astrology magazines, shuffle them in a hat, distribute them at random among the 12 zodiacal signs and print the results. This was very successful of course (because all astrology works on the "Barnum principle" of saying things so vague and general that all readers think it applies to them). He describes how he overheard in a cafe a pair of office workers eagerly scanning Zo-ran's column in the paper:
"They squealed with delight on seeing their future so well laid out, and in response to my query said that Zo-ran had been 'right smack on' last week. I did not identify myself as Zo-ran ... Reaction in the mail to the column had been quite interesting, too, and sufficient for me to decide that many people will accept and rationalise almost any pronouncement made by someone they believe to be an authority with mystic powers. At this point, Zo-ran hung up his scissors, put away the paste pot, and went out of business."
Geoffrey Dean, an Australian researcher who has conducted extensive tests of astrology, reversed the astrological readings of 22 subjects, substituting phrases that were the opposite of what the horoscopes actually stated. Yet the subjects in this study said the readings applied to them just as often (95 percent of the time) as people to whom the correct phrases were given. Apparently, those who seek out astrologers just want guidance, any guidance. [AstroSociety]
Some time ago astronomers Culver and Ianna tracked the published predictions of well-known astrologers and astrological organizations for five years. Out of more than 3,000 specific predictions (including many about politicians, film stars, and other famous people), only about 10 percent came to pass. Veteran reporters - and probably many people who read or watch the news - could do a good deal better by educated guessing.
If the stars lead astrologers to incorrect predictions 9 times out of 10, they hardly seem like reliable guides for decisions of life and affairs of state. Yet millions of people seem to swear by them.
Today, though we now understand much more about the true nature of the starry universe, many individuals still cling to the medieval notion that earthly events in their individual lives may be predicted from observations of the skies performed by experienced - and perhaps inspired - practitioners of astrology.
This belief even extends into governmental offices, as in India, where in all walks of life astrology is taken quite seriously, to the point that a prominent Indian science adviser once complained to the American ambassador to India that a primary problem for his department was that they lacked a sufficient staff of competent astrologers. Even in the U.S. White House, president Reagan and his first lady were actually arranging their official and personal schedules in accordance with the calculations of an astrologer who was retained by them. Prince Charles of England, a devout believer in many strange matters, has had his birth sign (Scorpio) worked into the design of his crown that he wears as Prince of Wales. [AstroSociety]
Astrology has invariably failed to meet not only the practitioners' expectations, but any other simple test of the most basic effect, though the contrary is widely claimed by the believers.
Sun Signî astrology - the kind that is found in the newspaper columns - may say that for one-twelfth of the entire population of the world, today is ìa good day to pursue new fashion ideasî or that another twelfth of humanity will find this a day to ìact boldly on property investments.î These probabilities would apply whether the reader is a Maori lawyer, an Irish fisherman, or a Peruvian geologist.
Opinions on astrology have been offered by persons all through literature and the arts. The philosopher/physician Maimonides (1135-1204) in his Responsa I, said, ìAstrology is not a science; it is a disease.î Francesco Guicciardini (1483-1540), a papal adviser, wrote:
"How happy are the astrologers if they tell one truth to a hundred lies, while other people lose all credibility if they tell one lie to a hundred truths."
The Italian pundit was flying in the face of his boss, who was, along with so many of his fellow popes, dependent on resident astrologers to provide him with advice.
Dr. Erika Bourguignon, professor of anthropology at Ohio State University, refers to astrology as ìa pseudoscience and a divinatory art,î and John Maddox, editor of the science journal Nature, has commented on astrology as it was dealt with in his publication:
"...one of the things we have published on astrology a few years back was a very carefully done study in California with the collaboration of 28 astrologers from the San Francisco area and lots of subjects - 118 of them altogether - and lunar charts were made by the astrologers. It turned out that the people couldn't recognize their own charts any more accurately than by chance... and that seems to me to be a perfectly convincing and lasting demonstration of how well this thing works in practice. My regret is that there's so many intelligent, able people wasting their time and, might I say, taking other people's money, in this hopeless cause."
(Sir Maddox was referring to the project of Dr. Shawn Carlson of San Diego, which tested astrology and was reported in Nature.)
Astrology is incredibly complex; there are innumerable variables which must be considered before an astrologer can confidently make a statement. It is this very complexity which marks astrology as a pseudoscience. Nothing could ever disprove it. Astrology can explain everything that happens, even contradictory events. There is always some ready ad hoc hypothesis to explain away any apparent refuting data. There just isn't any evidence in favour of astrology, and no reason why we should expect there to be evidence. It isn't as though it would be difficult to find evidence for astrology, if there were any to be had. A statistical tendency, however slight, for people's personalities to be predictable from their birthdays, over and above the expected difference between winter and summer babies, would be a promising start. For us to take a hypothesis seriously, it should ideally be supported by at least a little bit of evidence.
Scientific truth is too beautiful to be sacrificed for the sake of light entertainment or money. Astrology is an aesthetic affront. It cheapens astronomy, like using Beethoven for commercial jingles. By existing law neither Beethoven nor nature can sue, but perhaps existing law could be changed. If the methods of astrologers were really shown to be valid it would be a fact of signal importance for science. Under such circumstances astrology should be taken seriously indeed. But if - as all indications agree - there is not a smidgen of validity in any of the things that astrologers so profitably do, this, too, should be taken seriously and not indulgently trivialised. We should learn to see the debauching of science for profit as a crime.
Astrology not only demeans astronomy, shrivelling and cheapening the universe with its pre-Copernican dabblings. It is also an insult to the science of psychology and the richness of human personality. I am talking about the facile and potentially damaging way in which astrologers divide humans into 12 categories. Scorpios are cheerful, outgoing types, Leos with their methodical personalities go well with Libras (or whatever it is). Are you an introvert or an extrovert? We love an opportunity to pigeonhole each other but we should resist the temptation.
Personality is a real phenomenon and psychologists (real, scientific psychologists, not Freudians or Jungians) have had some success in developing mathematical models to handle many dimensions of personality variation. The initially large number of dimensions can be mathematically collapsed into fewer dimensions with measurable, and for some purposes conscionable, loss in predictive power. These fewer derived dimensions sometimes correspond to the dimensions that we intuitively think we recognise - aggressiveness, obstinacy, affectionateness and so on. Summarising an individual's personality as a point in multidimensional space is a serviceable approximation whose limitations can be measured and are known. It is a far cry from any mutually exclusive categorisation, certainly far from the preposterous fiction of astrology's 12 dumpbins. It is based upon genuinely relevant data about people themselves, not their birthdays. The psychologist's multidimensional scaling can be useful in deciding whether a person is suited to a particular career, or a couple to each other. The astrologer's 12 pigeonholes are, if nothing worse, a costly and irrelevant distraction. [Richard Dawkins, The Real Romance in the Stars, in a column to British newspaper, Independent]
Science has shown us through measurement, observation and experimentation that there are four forces in the Universe: electromagnetism, strong interaction, weak interaction and gravitation. For reasons too detailed to go into in this article, none of them can impact humanity purely from the positions of the stars in the sky or how aligned the planets are.
If there is some mystical force (other than the fundamental four above) affecting our lives from the planets, then clearly distance is no object for this force as it doesn't matter if a planet or star is near or far.
How does it work, then, that we have found hundreds of exoplanets orbiting other stars? Or that there are over 200 billion stars in the Milky Way? Surely that 'force' would also be affecting us. Thankfully it doesn't, otherwise we would all be running round as complete loonies with all these 'influences' flying at us from all directions.
10 Embarrassing Questions for Astrologers:
1. What is the likelihood that one-twelfth of the world's population is having the same kind of day?
2. Why is the moment of birth, rather than conception, crucial for astrology?
3. If the mother's womb can keep out astrological influences until birth, can we do the same with a cubicle of steak?
4. If astrologers are as good as they claim, why aren't they richer?
5. Are all horoscopes done before the discovery of the three outermost planets incorrect?
6. Shouldn't we condemn astrology as a form of bigotry?
7. Why do different schools of astrology disagree so strongly with each other?
8. If the astrological influence is carried by a known force, why do the planets dominate?
9. If astrological influence is carried by an unknown force, why is it independent of distance?
10. If astrological influences don't depend on distance, why is there no astrology of stars, galaxies, and quasars?