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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. #71
    Senior Member Ming's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Night View Post
    Z, this is all anecdote. There's no falsifiable basis for anything you've offered here.

    So two consecutive retail clerks guessed your astrological sign. So, what? It doesn't necessarily follow that their presumption was anything more than simple, dumb luck.

    Let's examine the data:

    Clearly, you were in the store to purchase some form of clothing; ergo, you have specific aesthetic taste. So, her statement confirming that fact is a no-brainer.

    Plus, it sounds like you had a bit of conversation beforehand, as your provided detail was exceedingly specific:



    Perhaps you casually mentioned something that tipped her off, in terms of your birth date? Perhaps it was autumn when you were in the store. Did the topic of seasons come into play at all? Maybe she was attracted to you and was attempting to animate details of your life to perpetuate conversation?

    Plus, didn't you say they both worked at the same store? Maybe it's some weird fad they shared. Or, maybe the first girl discussed you with the latter.

    What you've offered sounds a lot like confirmation bias. Or, cold reading. I wouldn't put much stock into astrology based on this experience. Plus, like any worthwhile clinical metric, shouldn't you repeatedly expose yourself to similar variables under approximate conditions to verify hypothesis?

    At best, it sounds like your sample set is incomplete.


    It might interest you to know that I'm a Sagittarius and have very particular aesthetic values myself.
    Here this is very general (only the sun sign, because that's all the info I know from you) but maybe you might see yourself in here! It's just general for fun info anyways.

    Sagittarius

    * Mutable Fire
    * Ruler: Jupiter
    * Detriment: Mercury

    The mutable fire sign of Sagittarius is the most mature but also the most restless and expansive of the fire signs. With Jupiter as its ruling planet, Sagittarius is always seeking the bigger picture, the meaning of life, greater wisdom, more knowledge, more adventures into the unknown and more experiences. It is the journey itself, rather than the goal, which is important for this mutable sign. Sagittarius refuses to be trapped either physically or intellectually, and as soon as, or even before, something threatens to become mundane or routine, they will be off to the next thing, chasing the next horizon which holds fascinating future possibilities for something even more meaningful. As king of the Gods, Jupiter was larger than life, flamboyant, spontaneous, reactive, with an explosive temper, hurling thunderbolts when he was angry. The sheer scale of Sagittarius, its generosity and benevolence, its gales, hurricanes and tornadoes, can be overwhelming, and the explosive temper, quickly spent, can nevertheless leave the more sensitive signs shaken for some time afterwards.

    This sign often has a tremendous amount of physical energy and a strong constitution, and physical exercise and sport can be a positive way to work off this energy. Sagittarians have no natural boundaries, which explains why they are often so clumsy, crashing into things and into other people. Fundamentally sociable and gregarious, Sagittarians tend to sweep up other people into their orbit. The more people, the bigger the party, the better. They will always be seeking a more universal or philosophical dimension to life. Their vision is so powerful that, with the self-confidence of all the fire signs, they can even come to believe that they are the arbiters of the one and only truth, which opens them up to accusations of being arrogant, patronising and condescending.

    The integration of the opposite sign of Gemini and of the planet Mercury, in its detriment in this sign, can bring a more objective, rational approach and an appreciation of the possibility that truths can be partial and multiple and that other, equally valid opinions and views exist. The integration of Mercury can bring a sense of humour and detachment to what can otherwise become a rather overbearing, evangelical approach to life.

    (From astro.com BTW)

  2. #72
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Yeah, I mean, I don't think anyone has a problem with using it purely for entertainment purposes (except perhaps antisocial one.)

    I believe astrology exists, but I don't believe it has any predictive power. That seems to be what the thread is about, right?


    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    I always admire those who support lost causes.
    And suddenly the root of Victor's rampant narcissism comes squarely into focus.
    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  3. #73
    Senior Member Ming's Avatar
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    I'm willing to believe that it has predictive powers; but I won't let it affect a major decision in my life. I mean small ones why not? (Eg, whether or not I should eat this chocolate cookie), but big ones like my marriage, etc, is just too big for me to trust in it.

    I'm not saying that people have to pray and completely bow down to astrology, nor am I saying that people have to dismiss it like as if it's utter bullshit. It's just that whether or not you will hold it as a belief..

  4. #74
    Freshman Member simulatedworld's Avatar
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    Fe really wants me to say "Right, makes sense..." and let it go now.

    If you could be anything you want, I bet you'd be disappointed--am I right?

  5. #75
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Keeping my nerve

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    suddenly the root of Victor's rampant narcissism comes squarely into focus.
    And here I am trapped like a rat in a search-light.

    But it's true, I am mildly neurotic and I do act out here.

    But remember we can't act out unless it is unconscious. So very slowly I am teasing out my unconscious here - I am slowly making my unconscious, conscious.

    And I recognise this is disturbing for those whose unconscious remains unconscious. For their unconscious drives them without their knowing. And their unconscious is unconscious for very good reason - and here I am disturbing them.

    No wonder they seek to ward me off by obsessive logic, by telling me I'm wrong, by accusing me of being a troll, by ad hominem attacks, and finally by threats of violence.

    Yes, I have certainly struck a nerve. But thank heavens I have kept mine.

  6. #76
    Let me count the ways Betty Blue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady X View Post
    i have guessed peoples signs a lot actually...i know stuff.
    Heh heh, that be your intuition...


    Oh and for the record Vic, i always support the under dog, especially when it's right.
    "We knew he was someone who had a tragic flaw, that's where his greatness came from"

  7. #77
    Member niberrizbe25's Avatar
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    I used to believe in this matrix more bofore I found personality types. I do think that there is some influence. This might be do to indeed the energy of the cosmos acting upon us at certain times in history or because people unconciously try to accomodate themselves to their profile. Really I think that if Astrology has any merit it will only be able to cover the tendencies of people; it cannot describe their personality or future. Because tendencies can be mastered, these descriptions can be rendered obsolete. It all depends on how much the other person is willing to transform. When I was younger, I was the classical Aries. I was completely focused on the self and my actions, had little patience for obstacles and had a very narcicisstic drive to be above everybody else. I have become the master over this frame of thinking and no longer let it control me.

    Nevertheless, no matter how valid it is, it does spark up great conversations! That sometimes end up insightful and hilarious... and sometimes very explosive... sense of humor is key!

  8. #78
    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zarathustra View Post
    Night:

    Did I present it as anything other than anecdotal evidence?

    And what, pray tell, is necessarily wrong with anecdotal evidence?

    I gave the facts: if that was mere random chance, it was 1/144.

    If that's what you want to believe, then feel free.
    No, I get what you're saying.

    It simply happens that anecdotal evidence, unto itself, is less reliable than independent analysis. For the purposes of personal belief, there's nothing wrong with anecdote. It makes sense to rely on individual perception to fuel one's worldview. It would be bizarre to resist making conclusions about life without scientific evaluation - would make for a very reluctant, non-progressive lifestyle.

    Yet, when you're trying to convince others to agree with your personal circumstances, anecdote is often the least compelling form of evidence. Perception is a broad, expansive coin. It follows the old cliche that my "red" might not be your "red", and so forth.

    As far as statistics go, the 1/144 statement might seem reasonable, were you to happen upon the two women in a controlled, clinical study where the variables of conversation and observation were sterilized of potential bias. As it happens, the real probability of their accurate guessing is likely to be much, much better than 1/144 as a result of your interaction with them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ming View Post
    Here this is very general (only the sun sign, because that's all the info I know from you) but maybe you might see yourself in here!
    Thank you very kindly, Ming.

  9. #79
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    I think the most simple explanation to Zarathustra's situation is that his personality resembles Libra the most. Astrology doesn't have to be true for that to be true. Anyone who's read the descriptions will thus have a good shot at guessing correctly.

    Not that that is the only possible explanation. Just what I would guess. Occam's razor and what not.

    Quote Originally Posted by simulatedworld View Post
    Through what physical mechanism do planetary positions have any influence whatsoever on personality?
    I don't think that is how astrology explains itself. It's more a third party causes both planetary alignments and human personality. Hence the supposed correlation between them.

    I don't think astrology has any validity, but it gets treated unfairly sometimes. A lot of people dismiss it without trying to understand it first.

  10. #80
    Reason vs Being ragashree's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erm View Post
    I don't think that is how astrology explains itself. It's more a third party causes both planetary alignments and human personality. Hence the supposed correlation between them.
    If we're only looking at correlation, whether we can propose a causative mechanism isn't particularly relevant, which I think many people forget. Astrology is not generally attempting to explain an alternative mechanism for how the universe works, but pupports to be a tool for understanding human psychology. It seems more important to me to establish the validity or otherwise of the correlation - whether or not there is a real phenomenon taking place - before we worry about the cause. Astrology is not challenging physics any more than physics is challenging psychology, so there seems to me little point in using observations from one discipline to attack the other.

    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. We're still far from having an adequate explanation for the mechanism behind counter-intuitive scientific principle of quantum uncertainty, for example, but since the phenomenon has been experimentally verified, we accept its existence. 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. If we were to try to do so the best method would probably be to determine an set of psychological tests to examine a large number of people for particular traits, then correlate the results with their birth charts and the corresponding astrological predictions. This is a formidable task due to the number of variables involved, but I'm sure it could be done if someone ever had the will and funding. At the moment the debate is mostly going round in circles, anecdote squaring off against easy fallacy, and I don't see it ending any time soon.

    I don't think astrology has any validity, but it gets treated unfairly sometimes. A lot of people dismiss it without trying to understand it first.
    Indeed. I suspect this is all too often because it doesn't fit their belief system, which is often at heart a mechanistic one. Arguments against it in this case are almost inevitably straw men, serving more to validate the non-believer's lack of belief than to change the opinion of those who do believe.
    Look into my avatar. Look deep into my avatar...

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