Most professional astronomers do not believe in astrology

How do you explain the fact that most professional astronomers do not believe in astrology?

“How do you explain the fact that most professional astronomers do not believe in astrology?” was a question I answered on Quora.

Homepage Topic 1 imageOh, there’s a question…

There is an assumption in this question that astronomy and astrology are closely tied and therefore if astronomers say they do not believe in astrology their judgement must carry weight, even a final damning.

It is true that astrology draws on astronomy but that is where the similarity and correspondence ends. Astrology is an holistic system that deals with symbolism and meaning; astronomy isn’t and doesn’t.

Astrology and astronomy used to be one discipline. They went separate ways during the late mediaeval period. It is marked fairly by Copernicus heliocentric system discovery; the rise of the materialistic sciences, and the attempts to throw out the baby with the bathwater of spiritual belief – and/or reduce it to superstition. That disease is still with us.

But does it really matter what astronomers believe?

Well, there are all sorts of byways one could go down in context with answering this, but to keep it simple; astronomers do not, or are unlikely to study astrology; while astrology does require serious study to understand it and make a judgement call on it.

You know, it never ceases to amaze me how quick members of the scientific community can pass judgement on something they know little about or have not researched.

But then there is good reason for that. It’s their religion. If it doesn’t fit into that materialistic paradigm, expect it to be denied, rubbished or called “pseudoscience” – it’s always good to trot that last one out. It is so insulting but of course that’s its intention.

Comments like…
“Astrology is astronomy for the weak minded.” Brian Cox
Or…
“Horoscopes are consciously designed to be so vague that they could apply to anybody.”
Carl Sagan
… are utter rubbish and not helpful to anyone. They only demonstrate ignorance of the subject. To any astrologer this is obvious. But it goes down well with a public who know no better.

Mag Horoscope imageI’ll guarantee the astrology that “most professional astronomers do not believe in” is pop astrology (and that is what your question really addresses because I suspect you don’t know there is a difference). It’s the “stars” you’ll find in the media in other words.

Well, I don’t believe in that stuff either – so where does that leave us…?

I suspect most professional astrologers rue the day that pop astrology came into being and continues to trash their craft; putting it in the firing line for cheap comments like those above. And besides we can best do without the expects on pop astrology telling us what to believe or not to believe in.

By the way, did you know that some of the pioneers in astronomy, such as Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler and Galileo Galilei were also astrologers? It is also claimed that Isaac Newton dabbled in it too.

Ee ba gum, it’s a small world…

Associated links:

How do sceptics view astrology?
Scorpio moon conjunct Pluto in 4th house. What does this mean in a natal chart?
Do Christians believe in astrology?


Categories: Astrology, Q & A Blog
Tags: Astrology and astronomy used to be one discipline, Brian Cox, But does it really matter what astronomers believe?, Carl Sagan, Most professional astronomers do not believe in astrology

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