Are Star Signs Rubbish?

According to astrology, there are 13 types of humans: 12 who fall under signs of the zodiac, and those who think it’s the sort of manure bought by people considering crystals as acceptable room decoration, wear floral skirts and generally own cats.

As a Libra I have to admit to liking debate, hence after a few moments of deliberation, I decided against a cat, but to write a blog about horoscopes.

Admirably without sniggering, horoscopes claim to predict the future, and in some newspapers, they remain the most accurate reporting in it. Despite this, it takes believers far more than wildly inaccurate forecasts that ruin their day to shake their faith. After all, as Francis Bacon once said, ‘the root of superstition is men observing when a thing hits, not when it misses.”

To be fair astrologers do know what they’re doing, even if it doesn’t involve understanding how planets millions of miles away determine the fate of Deidre, Ferndale Close, Gloucester. Astrologers understand the importance of being vague. Waffle-like ‘You have a short window of opportunity this month, so be determined to get out of the house and see what the world holds for you’ is far better than specifics like ‘you’ll date a brunette sex-pot on Tinder, who likes cherry brandy and sitting facing the door’, which will too often be dashed by getting no matching swipes on Tinder for a week. Predictions need to be universal to attach, in a kind of spiritual Velcro.

The most important spice to the astrology soup is the audience’s desperation, which is something that lies within mankind; we all vaguely hope there is some preordained destiny beyond arriving at work to spend the morning anticipating lunch.

However, considering a burgeoning UK population of over 60 million, and ignoring the 13th category, there are approx. 5 million people with the same star sign, and it’s unlikely they’re all having the same day unless they live in Norfolk. But there are plenty who believe in astrology, even claiming there is actual proof.

Of course, research pointing to astrology’s accuracy is generally carried about by organizations called the Spiritual Research Foundation Trust, who don’t sound biased at all, and carry out objective and empirical research, in high pointed hats. However, research is a double-edged wand. In 2003, research started in 1958 revealed birthdays in affecting future health to be, and they must have struggled with how to deliver this news, ‘rubbish’. Although the research only involved March babies, meaning that astrology’s inaccuracies may be limited to Pisces. Mind you, they’ll probably brush it aside with their usual generous sanguine nature.

These 2003 findings caused anger in astrological circles, with Roy Gillett, the president of the Astrological Association of GB, saying the study’s findings, like the A3 on a bank holiday, should be treated “with extreme caution.” Although he probably should have seen it coming, just like you did that joke.

Without star signs, there’s immediately half as many chat-up lines in pubs and bars, and without their predictive nature, our lives are made even more senseless. Anything we can clutch to and that gives our life purpose and meaning should not be underrated. Besides, what’s Mystic Meg going to do otherwise, other than feed her cats; it’s not like she can put her name on any serious CV.

To close, it’s important to state that my birthday lies on the Virgo and Libra cusp, which seems such a balanced, considered thing to do, that it suggests I am a typical Libra. Perhaps there’s something in it after all, but it’s likely that interplanetary solar systems have better things to do than helping us to decide whether it’s worth stocking up the house with cherry brandy.

Originally published on Idle blogs of an idle fellow

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