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View Poll Results: Do you believe in astrology?

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  • Yes

    33 18.13%
  • No

    142 78.02%
  • I have no idea what it is? So I'm not sure.

    7 3.85%
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  1. #101
    Happy Dancer uumlau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orobas View Post
    Is this a test thread to see if an INTJ believes in astrology, if we will all suddenly decide that we also believe in astrology? 47!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (Fuzz-y-enfj-thingy you are behind this arent you??) I AM NOT FALLING for it. YOU WILL NOT TRICK ME THIS TIME.

    Sun sign is scorpio and is pointless.

    However sun sign Scorpio and moon sign taurus gave a description that kinda sounded like familiar....
    I know enough of astrology to explain why it seems to work and why it in truth doesn't. I can cast a horoscope and read it for you and tell you everything you thought you didn't know about yourself.

    Proof? Shall I recite a part of mine?

    Sun in Capricorn
    Moon in Capricorn
    Ascendant in Aquarius
    Mercury in Sagittarius
    Venus in Aquarius
    Mars in Aquarius
    Jupiter in Gemini
    Saturn in Pisces
    (the rest doesn't matter as much, and then there are all the aspects and Houses I'm leaving off.)

    I can go through this and point out all the crap that coincides with Ni-ish traits, Te traits, Fi traits, and so on. But there are also pieces that could just as easily describe an ESFJ.
    An argument is two people sharing their ignorance.

    A discussion is two people sharing their understanding, even when they disagree.

  2. #102
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    I just don't write things off that might as well stay open-ended.
    It's about as open-ended as creationism. We technically can't dismiss it 100%, but there's no compelling reason to believe it has predictive power until some kind of evidence is shown for that claim.


    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    If you listen to that interview I posted with Richard Tarnas, you'll see that he actually says it doesn't have predictive power, that astrology is better looked at as a clock, keeping the "time" of the multitude of archetypal impulses manifesting themselves in an extremely complex manner across the universe.

    Admittedly, very unscientifically rigorous, as Jock pointed out, but Tarnas says exactly that in his book.
    The claim of predictive power based on a supposed correlation between time of birth and the positions of stellar bodies is the only thing wrong with astrology.

    If it doesn't do that, it's identical to typology--just an arbitrary, untestable and unfalsifiable set of labels for categorization purposes. I have no problem with astrology if you remove the claim of predicted power based on the aforementioned supposed correlation.


    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    The best part of his book is really about this exact topic. About how our obsession with scientific proof has bred in us a tendency to not believe in anything that cannot be proven by the scientific method.

    This is a problematic tendency, as there are many things in life which cannot be scientifically proven, but which are nonetheless true.

    "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
    Take out the part about the falsifiable correlation and I "believe" in astrology just as much as I "believe" in Jungian typology or any other comparable made up system for classifying personalities.

    In fact, if you take out that claim, astrology can no longer be evaluated in terms of truth value because it's no longer falsifiable (exactly like typology.) I could see some value in using the personality traits associated with each sign to categorize personalities for comparative analysis, just as typology does.

    If that were the case, it would be "true" that I'm an Aries in the same way it's "true" that I'm an ENTP--and neither claim would be falsifiable.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  3. #103
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    It's about as open-ended as creationism. We technically can't dismiss it 100%, but there's no compelling reason to believe it has predictive power until some kind of evidence is shown for that claim.
    Agreed. To say that it is without any value whatsoever is to apply an unnecessarily authoritarian evaluation. Sure, it has value. It's a provocative psychological artifact into the way people used to try to compare superstitious beliefs with physical observations.

    The true nature of astrology becomes increasingly evident when you examine certain pattern-seeking elements of human personality. Seeking out patterns is a valuable intellectual exercise as that's how "learning" comes into being.

    It's when we apply subjective value in front of where the preponderance of evidence leads that our footing becomes wonky.

  4. #104
    Senior Member Jaguar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    I was born October 17th.
    1983?

  5. #105
    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Hey Night, I think in your eagerness to refute my point you're missing a significant part of it. I'm not attempting to make a case for or against. Personally I neither "believe" or "disbelieve" in astrology. I'm not quite sure where you get the idea that I have a strong vested interest in the topic; I'm trying to look at it objectively here and shed any preconceptions I may have.

    Originally Posted by ragashree
    There has been little serious scientific attempt to validate or invalidate astrology because it does not fit the belief systems of most of those who practice and fund science, I suspect.
    Quote Originally Posted by Night View Post
    No. There is little scientific interest in astrology because it is a non-science.
    You're rather begging the question there. Or maybe just reporting the views of those that do. Either way, it's just a belief; there's no basis in evidence.

    Here. You even answer your own question earlier in your analysis.

    Originally Posted by ragashree
    If a genuine correlation can be established, with a degree of statistical association between aspects significantly higher than would occur by chance, astrology has the potential to be a useful psychological tool, if not a scientifically falsifiable one.
    Fair enough?
    I wasn't asking a question that I noticed, so I'm not sure what you mean here. Anyway, there are levels of falsifiability. We can falsify the phenomenon by disproving its very existence to a reasonable standard of certainty; if this cannot be done and it's necessary to tentatively accept it, there would be an impetus for further work and perhaps trying to identify a mechanism. In the absence of a truly plausible mechanism (I don't personally think one has been proposed at the moment) we are in no position to falsify one using "hard" scientific data, so there's simply no point in engaging with that at present. We are to some extent in a position to falsify the very existence of astrology as a predictive tool with well designed psychological testing, however.

    I see this a lot with New Agers (not necessarily you, ragashree), in that they try to make a fuzzy connection between legitimate theory - like quantum uncertainty - and the validity of their pet theory on the basis that quantum uncertainty is not very well understood at this point, much like their theory fails to be understood.

    What hard data can you offer that connects quantum uncertainty with astrology?
    I'm not attempting to do anything so ambitious (and probably unwise) or taking a position that assumes such a connection even exists. If you'd care to reread my post you may see, but in any case I'll state it here; I'm merely providing it as an corresponding example in "hard" science of a phenomenon being accepted because it has been verified by observation, where mechanism is not understood. This doesn't imply any sort of relationship in my view, nor am I necessarily assuming that there would be even if a case WAS made for the existence of the actual phenomenon. It would be a reasonable inference, however, that IF a phenomenon was demonstrated, an explanation would lie outside Newtonian physics, therefore probably in the qauntum realm, because there is nothing in Newtonian physics that could explain it. I'm not, however, assuming that anything WILL be discovered.


    What hard data can you offer that connects quantum uncertainty with astrology?

    Developing a bridge between psychometrics and quantum mechanics sounds more like misdirection away from the faults of astrology and onto an ideal that suggests somehow that astrology and quantum principle share a commonality because they are individually difficult to understand (for profoundly different reasons, of course).

    I don't see any real validity with the comparison beyond distorted rhetoric.
    As I said, I'm not making that argument. I have no particular reason to think there would be a link. Your points would be correct if that's what I was actually trying to do, but you're mischaracterising my argument, which is a skeptic and uncommitted one.

    Sounds like you have a good working methodology to prove your particular belief.
    More to try to establish whether there is any objective value in astrology or not. I'm not trying to "prove" anything, but a proper large-scale scientific study is really the only way to assess its objective validity. What we seem to have at present is a host of a priori beliefs on either side. Doubtless even if disproved plenty of people would continue to view it as a valid form of entertainment, but that's not strictly relevant to whether the study is worth making.

    And, no - the debate isn't "going around in circles". Astrology is entertainment. The only real debate is whether or not you individually find it entertaining.
    It does go round a bit if you mischaracterise people's arguments as being something they're not! I can see this issue raises such strong opinions that it's difficult to wade in with a skeptic view and convince anyone that such a thing can actually exist, but that is, strangely enough, what I'm endeavouring to hold on this issue. Maybe you've dealt before with people who've tried to argue the case (a flakey one, I agknowledge) you're trying to pin on me, but that isn't my problem really, nor does it change what I'm saying.

    The onus is on you. Providing negative evidence (as in "your belief system is skewed because you adhere to x philosophy") doesn't provide positive data proving your theory.
    Please show me where I was trying to "prove" a theory, or what the theory was! I must say it had escaped me! I'm only saying that those with faith in the scientific method have a priori beliefs of their own which are equally capable of leading them to a conclusion which lacks a solid evidential foundation. If you want to argue against astrology, the best way of doing it in my view is by showing some solid evidence for its non-existence. The converse applies if you want to argue for it being a valid psychological discipline (which in my view is the only place it could potentially fit in science at present).
    Look into my avatar. Look deep into my avatar...

  6. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    I know enough of astrology to explain why it seems to work and why it in truth doesn't. I can cast a horoscope and read it for you and tell you everything you thought you didn't know about yourself.

    Proof? Shall I recite a part of mine?

    Sun in Capricorn
    Moon in Capricorn
    Ascendant in Aquarius
    Mercury in Sagittarius
    Venus in Aquarius
    Mars in Aquarius
    Jupiter in Gemini
    Saturn in Pisces
    (the rest doesn't matter as much, and then there are all the aspects and Houses I'm leaving off.)
    Having studied astrology as well, I know that the aspects and houses are just as important if not more important than the stuff you just mentioned.

    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    I can go through this and point out all the crap that coincides with Ni-ish traits, Te traits, Fi traits, and so on. But there are also pieces that could just as easily describe an ESFJ.
    This would only matter if INTJ (or MBTI, in general) were capable of describing your entire personality.

    If you're going to believe in astrology, you have to let go of that belief.

  7. #107
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Ah. I see what you're saying. If I've unfairly characterized your argument, then you'll have to pardon me. Yet, even after re-reading your point, I do not see that I have and instead stand by my earlier read.

    I'll have to defer to you in this case, as you authored the selected passage.


    Quote Originally Posted by ragashree View Post
    It would be a reasonable inference, however, that IF a phenomenon was demonstrated, an explanation would lie outside Newtonian physics, therefore probably in the qauntum realm, because there is nothing in Newtonian physics that could explain it. I'm not, however, assuming that anything WILL be discovered.
    Why might it be reasonable to presume that an answer must necessarily be found in quantum theory?

  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    It comes from the same place typological categories come from: taking the set of all human behavior and dividing arbitrarily into categories.
    I think the developmental history and methodology of astrology and MBTI differ pretty significantly, to be honest.

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    You assume there's such a thing as a "Libra personality" exactly the same way you assume there's such a thing as an "INTJ personality." If you remove the part about correlation between birth date and personality, typology and astrology are identical.
    It's actually birth date, time, and location.

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    It's not that astrology "isn't real"--each sign actually does have well-defined, observable personality traits associated with it, just like in typology. The only thing "not real" about it is the claim that people born on a Libra date will show Libra traits.
    All assumptions.

    Also, you're putting too much emphasis on the sun sign.

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    You just take all human behavior and chop it up into arbitrarily defined categories. I would have no problem with astrology as a classification system if it did not claim a falsifiable correlation between birth date and personality. As I said, aside from this claim, the two systems are functionally identical.
    You believe that "all human behavior" can be easily chopped up into categories? And then you call these categories "arbitrary", even if you're dividing it up into exactly twelve of em?

    And then you claim a correlation between personality and birth date is (easily) falsifiable...

    ...my heads starting to hurt from all this horrible reasoning...

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    As for the sun sign being only a small part of the astrological chart, that doesn't really matter. No matter how you choose to slice up the categories, you're still making an incorrect claim that the positions of celestial bodies at the time of birth correlate with personality type. Typology makes no such falsifiable claim--psychological type cannot be tested empirically, but birth date can.
    Yes, birth date can be tested empirically, but personality, well, that's a much shakier claim...

  9. #109
    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Just out of curiosity: could anyone posting from here who considers themselves skilled in astrology infer anything at all about what might be in my horoscope (or to be more specific, my natal chart) from what they've seen me post here so far? I might think there are actually several pointers to certain aspects (I know a fair amount about how astrology is supposed to operate) but this will naturally be coloured by my preconceptions and therefore doesn't make for an effective blind test.
    Look into my avatar. Look deep into my avatar...

  10. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by Night View Post
    Why might it be reasonable to presume that an answer must necessarily be found in quantum theory?
    Night, check out this interview with Richard Tarnas on CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) to which I provided a link earlier.

    It's the second link. It runs about 45 minutes and addresses every question you've asked.

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