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Why I think Astrology is real

Discuss Divination, Fortune Telling - Astrology, Tarot, Runes, I Ching, Tea Leaves, etc. and Predictions.

Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 02 Jun 2009, 21:09

I've always known that there was something to astrology, even though it's scientifically impossible by conventional laws of physics.

I've always had a kindred spirit and comfort zone with Cancers, for instance, that I didn't have with other signs. This was proven time and time again. In fact, there have been several occasions where I knew a person I just met was a Cancer even though they NEVER told me their birthdate or sign! I swear it.

Also, during my years of traveling, I find that an unusually high percentage of females I meet tend to be Aries. I'm talking a much higher percentage than a chance rate of 1 out of 12. Perhaps Aries signs are the most likely to talk to strangers? I don't know, but there's no denying that I meet them the most often.

Therefore, the skeptics like James Randi and John Stossel of ABC who claim that Astrology is all about general claims that apply to anyone is WRONG in my view and reflect total IGNORANCE of Astrology on their part.

No system, even a metaphysical one, is perfect or infallible. But Astrology definitely does get SPECIFICS about a person right that chance or educated guesses do not. And I'm talking about specifics that do not apply to anyone.

It gets even more accurate when you use Indian Vedic Astrology or Chinese Purple Heart Astrology, which is based on I Ching principles. Readings from those systems have even pinpointed specific years when certain things would happen in my life which came true, as well as specific addiction and talents that I possess, which do NOT apply to most people.

Simply put, the skeptics are wrong. What they say, even though it's scientific, goes against my firsthand experience. And it's unfortunate that they are too closed minded to admit that there are forces in the multi-dimensional universe that they don't understand.
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 02 Jun 2009, 21:12

Response from my spiritual advisor:

" I do agree with what you say Winston but it was not until I was able to understand HOW astrology works that it began to make any sense to me.

I remember one day, I was standing in a checkout line ... in a very well to do town when the person in front of me picked up an Astrology paper. My first thought was one of surprise since they were dressed in an upscale tennis outfit and appeared to be well educated. I thought WHY would an intelligent person be interested in such things? As I stood there contemplating this I got this FLASH of insight.... direct from within .... and IT revealed .... The Universe is always finding ways to speak to each of us ... all the time. If .... we are OPEN to receive information through an astrology newspaper..then that is HOW The Universe will speak to us. IF we are more comfortable receiving information via tea leaves.. then Knowledge will come to us through tea leaves.. or reading bones, or palms, or.. whatever. The medium does not actually matter.... but our receptiveness to that media DOES MATTER. Truth can be read on the back of a cerial box... for those who have the eyes to "see" it.

A problem often arrises though when people try to INTERPRET the message. If we try to interject our own desires and THINKING process into the mix it can easily get garbled. There is a huge difference between pure information from one's Higher SELF and the THINKING process of our finite minds, which is typically tainted with desires and erronious beliefs. To hear the PURE message we need to be detached from our desires and fears.

It's a bit like when we're taking a test and we're not sure of the answer. Typically the first answer that "pops" into our minds is the correct one.... but as we allow our thinking (intellectual) minds to doubt, ruminate and ponder.. that can take us away from the pure spontanious answer. This spontanious knowledge, from our all knowing Higher SELF, without any intellectual effort, is called umesha .. a bursting forth of Pure Consciousness.

I might have mentioned before how I once asked The Master how these particular "Contemplation Cards" were always SO "right on". It was beyond uncanny how accurate they were.. so I knew they worked .. but I wanted to know HOW.
The Master revealed... there is nothing ON the Card. The Mind puts it there. In fact..there is NO CARD!... well... I finally got it... it is the power of the mind which creates ALL physical as well as non physical experiences, be they individual or shared. Everything happens from WITHIN.

This is why those great BEings such as Jesus, Krishna and The Buddha, etc.. continually taught their students to look WITHIN... because there lies the source of all experience. Higher SELF ( Pure Consciousness) becomes the mind (non physical/non local) and the mind then creates everything we experience.. be it individually or shared, physical or non physical.

We believe what the senses report to us and so perceive a rock, or whatever .... as being a physical thing that has an independent existance outside of ourselves.. but really it doesn't, just as a dream does not have any REAL existance outside of ourselves even though we are typically totally convinced.. say during a nightmare..that the "monster" actually exists. Well, in a way it does .. it exists as a creation of our own mind which we then experience. We awaken from dreams and say.. OH that wasn't "real". In much the same way we eventually AWAKEN from this experience of LIFE... as individual beings, and as rocks, other people, etc. having an independent existance outside of us. Ultimately we "see" that nothing exists independently from our True unlimited Self.
We come to recognize... I AM THAT.
Peace, Faith"
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby ciscop » 28 Jul 2009, 00:56

theres a particulary interesting thing in psychology called Forer Effect
a lot of magicians have used this to fool people
most recently criss angel on his mindfreak series and penn and teller on bullshit
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 30 Jul 2009, 21:38

Can you explain or summarize this Forer effect and why it's relevant to Astrology, or to what I said above?
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby NinjaPuppy » 31 Jul 2009, 00:14

Scepcop wrote:Can you explain or summarize this Forer effect and why it's relevant to Astrology, or to what I said above?


Scepcop - Here is what I found on 'Forer effect'. The source claims to be of the skeptical variety, so I will assume that the definition is written appropriately within the context of the previous comment by csicop.

http://www.skepdic.com/forer.html

I agree with you in that I also believe that astrology has some unexplained thing to it. I also believe that tarot cards have a somewhat similar situation and that prophetic dreams exist etc.

The Forer effect reference is a good example of one logical and note worthy explanation for many things that a human has difficulty explaining in a proven scientific format.

skepdic.com - Psychologist Bertram R. Forer (1914-2000) found that people tend to accept vague and general personality descriptions as uniquely applicable to themselves without realizing that the same description could be applied to just about anyone.


I agree with this completely and have proven it myself many times. Who here doesn't like to hear someone tell us that we possess certain characteristics that we believe to be part of our personality?

Astrology is noted to date back to the 3rd millenium BC (Wikipedia) and scientists considere astrology a pseudoscience or superstition (again: Wikipedia). Meanwhile...the astronomy part became scientific and the astrology part got lost in the sauce somewhere around the 18th century.

Isaac Newton (we all know him as 'The gravity guy), "claims that the gravitational effects of the celestial bodies are what accounts for astrological generalizations are not substantiated by scientific research, nor are they advocated by most astrologers. (Wikipedia). Why scientific research or today's astrologers feel that Newton's claims are not valid, I can't answer. The word 'generalizations' which I specifically added the italics and bold font to seems to be the point in question.

Forer = 'vague and general personality descriptions'
Newton = 'celestial bodies are what accounts for astrological generalizations'

Yes, astrology can be vague and general. No argument there. There are many astrologers out there who claim to be capable of astrology. I don't doubt their abilities in making vague and general descriptions nor do I doubt that by them using the celestial bodies they can account for astrological generalizations. Bless their hearts!

Sometimes, some of us agree with some of them when they make these generalizations. We experience some of it personally and some of can be pretty darned exact and downright spooky at times. Sometimes, at least for me it's more of a bust then anything but we are talking about very general and vague descriptions for the masses when we take it from a media source. The media prints horoscopes for 'entertainment purposes' with disclaimers in many instances which I see was something that was once suggested by the skeptics. Cudos to you skeptics! There is nothing wrong with informing the masses that you can't believe everything you see in print or see on TV. Just please don't try to convince those who would like to see for themselves if there is any merit in investigating a particular area.

I applaud the skeptics who bring things to light such as frauds, cheats, cons and extrodinary claims that can't be proven. But please remember there have been many extrodinary claims made throughout history that have taken centuries to obtain a glimmer of proof before becoming scientific fact.

If you will excuse me, I will now get off of my soapbox and take a long walk. I do hope I don't fall off the end of this flat world in the process. Oh wait! That's right, it's round isn't it? Silly me.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 31 Jul 2009, 00:49

But what does generalities that apply to everyone have to do with anything I said below?

I've always had a kindred spirit and comfort zone with Cancers, for instance, that I didn't have with other signs. This was proven time and time again. In fact, there have been several occasions where I knew a person I just met was a Cancer even though they NEVER told me their birthdate or sign! I swear it.

Also, during my years of traveling, I find that an unusually high percentage of females I meet tend to be Aries. I'm talking a much higher percentage than a chance rate of 1 out of 12. Perhaps Aries signs are the most likely to talk to strangers? I don't know, but there's no denying that I meet them the most often.
“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby NinjaPuppy » 31 Jul 2009, 01:37

Scepcop wrote:But what does generalities that apply to everyone have to do with anything I said below?

I've always had a kindred spirit and comfort zone with Cancers, for instance, that I didn't have with other signs. This was proven time and time again. In fact, there have been several occasions where I knew a person I just met was a Cancer even though they NEVER told me their birthdate or sign! I swear it.

Also, during my years of traveling, I find that an unusually high percentage of females I meet tend to be Aries. I'm talking a much higher percentage than a chance rate of 1 out of 12. Perhaps Aries signs are the most likely to talk to strangers? I don't know, but there's no denying that I meet them the most often.


Nothing. I was only commenting on your question that I quoted in my post.

I can add my personal experience that I tend to meet Pisces people as friends and have dated at least 7 people with the birth date of May 14 (Taurus) and 3 with a June 10 birthday (Gemini). My life is heavily associated with Taurus and Aries in family and I seem to attract Capricorns as like minded people that I get along well with on the Internet.

I have tried in vain to understand the astrological area since I was a teen. I find it confusing for some reason and can't seem to grasp the concept. I'm am lucky that I have met people who do understand it and ask them for clarification on planetary alignment and position when something in my world tends to go awry.

I am a firm believer that Mercury retrogrades can shake up my little world in certain areas and I make sure to know their schedules. The same with eclipses. I have seen many out of character human reactions to full moons and find it comforting actually that I can explain to myself why I have days that just can't be explained in any other way.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 31 Jul 2009, 02:02

If it doesn't apply to my examples, then why did the skeptic bring it up? This is an example of what I call "trying to force unrelated explanations into the data". It's like they don't even read what you write. It's very aggravating.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 31 Jul 2009, 02:04

Ninjapuppy, did you see this show where Skeptic Michael Shermer gets debunked by an Astrologer on his own show? lol

“Devotion to the truth is the hallmark of morality; there is no greater, nobler, more heroic form of devotion than the act of a man who assumes the responsibility of thinking.” - Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby NinjaPuppy » 31 Jul 2009, 02:34

Scepcop wrote:If it doesn't apply to my examples, then why did the skeptic bring it up?


IMO, you have answered your own question with your next sentence.

This is an example of what I call "trying to force unrelated explanations into the data".


BTW, I very much enjoyed that particular section. Nicely done.

It's like they don't even read what you write. It's very aggravating.


Agree. However...every time I see something like this happen, it validates your 'Characteristics and Behaviors of Pseudo-Skeptics. The possible 'like they don't even read what you write' sometimes I wonder if they actually read what they wrote. Just a thought. No jab intended. I realize there are people who participate while at work and as much as they would like to get into a good discussion they don't have the luxury of time or complete attention when catching up on the forums.

Thank you for creating such a great forum. I have been enjoying the different points of view very much.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby ciscop » 04 Aug 2009, 22:41

the forer effect
straight from wikipedia
read it and tell me how accurate it is
this test is done in psychology courses all over the world (thats how i learn it)

In 1948, psychologist Bertram R. Forer gave a personality test to his students. Afterward, he told his students they were each receiving a unique personality analysis that was based on the test's results and to rate their analysis on a scale of 0 (very poor) to 5 (excellent) on how well it applied to themselves. In reality, each received the same analysis:

“ You have a need for other people to like and admire you, and yet you tend to be critical of yourself. While you have some personality weaknesses you are generally able to compensate for them. You have considerable unused capacity that you have not turned to your advantage. Disciplined and self-controlled on the outside, you tend to be worrisome and insecure on the inside. At times you have serious doubts as to whether you have made the right decision or done the right thing. You prefer a certain amount of change and variety and become dissatisfied when hemmed in by restrictions and limitations. You also pride yourself as an independent thinker; and do not accept others' statements without satisfactory proof. But you have found it unwise to be too frank in revealing yourself to others. At times you are extroverted, affable, and sociable, while at other times you are introverted, wary, and reserved. Some of your aspirations tend to be rather unrealistic. ”

On average, the rating was 4.26, but only after the ratings were turned in was it revealed that each student had received identical copies assembled by Forer from various horoscopes.[2]

but here is an example which is more interesting
this is the forer effect mixed with a little bit of cold reading and a lot of flatery (we tend to accept flatery rather easily)
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby NinjaPuppy » 05 Aug 2009, 00:17

Scepcop wrote:Ninjapuppy, did you see this show where Skeptic Michael Shermer gets debunked by an Astrologer on his own show? lol


That was quite interesting. Thank you for posting that YouTube vid. If I understood it correctly, it pretty much sums up my personal attitude toward astrology. While listening to all of the information, I could say that I would be able to accept at least 70% of everything he said as applied to me. When switching out the two women's horoscopes, it's apparent that his success rate was much lower but I could still apply most of what he said to me. Once the appropriate reading was re-told to the appropriate person, they were able to accept a much higher percentage of information that directly applied to them.

I do believe that the study of astrology has merit and should be something that we go forward with. The comment by Virginia Bowen when she said that she got out of astrology because she felt that she was practicing psychology without a license, was also interesting. What is your take on that comment?

However, it's my personal opinion that anything posted on YouTube is only one side of a story. Sorry to be a wet blanket from this point where that is concerned. Not that it doesn't make for a great argument or present some good findings. It certainly was food for thought and I agree with it. Hardcore proof to a skeptic. Nope. But then again, I am a Libra and it is my lot in life to balance all things. LOL.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Scepcop » 05 Aug 2009, 00:35

I don't know about the comment by Virginia Bowen. She didn't give any reasons or explanations for what she said, so I can't critique other than see it as just her subjective opinion.

To ciscop: Thanks for posting that, but the point is that we were talking about highly specific hits that do not apply to everyone, so the forer effect does not apply here.

Unless of course, you are trying to commit this:

http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/explanations.php
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby NinjaPuppy » 05 Aug 2009, 01:53

Scepcop wrote:the point is that we were talking about highly specific hits that do not apply to everyone, so the forer effect does not apply here.


Let's get back to this, shall we? I have found that my daily horoscope predictions can be as much as 3 days off from the date it's intended. Back when I was in my late teens I really had a burning desire to be able to chart the planets and learn all that I could about astrology. My resources were limited to the public library, magazines and the daily horoscope in the various newspapers that my parents read. Linda Goodman's book, "Sun Signs" was what started this entire reading process and interest. Sydney Omarr's predictions seemed better than most at the time. His work came to be the best possible predictions that hit closest to my personal experiences.

The Hippie movement made Astrology popular for the time period and there were many assorted writers and Astrologers now jumping on the bandwagon. It made it fairly easy and economical to gather the different opinions and predictions for comparison.

Alas, no matter how much I read or tried to understand how do Astrology, I couldn't get a clue. I could compare the information from many sources however and compare it to how it or if it actually tied into something in my life. Results always varied with no real revelations most days but sometimes I would see a particular prediction that blew my mind. Yes, the occasional highly specific hit that made me wonder.

Many, many, many years pass and my interest in Astrology is again ignited by computer software that can now remove the brain block I had with doing the charting. Not exactly a science but much better than my feeble attempts and I notice a significant increase in relation to the predictions vs. my actual life. One small leap for man... and all that stuff. Very enjoyable and interesting stuff to me.

Next I meet someone who is doing some pretty intense study in Astrology and she is looking for 'subjects' to test her interpretations. Now she knew plenty about me personally so combining cold reading wouldn't be out of the question here. Her predictions were spot on accurate with more than generalities. She taught me a few things about planetary alignments and certain happenings that I can use in real life and have found to be good advice. Basic generalities from a skeptical point of view? Yes. Proven to help me avoid unpleasant circumstances? Also a Yes. Enough proof for me to form an opinion of it's worth? Yes, Yes, Yes.
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Re: Why I think Astrology is real

Postby Eteponge » 06 Aug 2009, 04:31

Derren Brown in that clip states that he used general cold reading to develop a general personality chart that could pretty much apply to anybody. A bunch of vague, general information, where no matter who has it, it will seem significant to them.

However, what he did in the video was a plain and simple out and out Strawman. Tabloid Astrology, the sort you find in the newpaper, which most people think is astrology, is not the real form of astrology. Tabloid Astrology is the one that deals with vague generalities and such drawn from just your star sign. However, Vedic Astrology and Chinsese Astrology are FAR more accurate, and need FAR more than just your star sign to write out a chart.

That video clip where Michael Shermer (Randi's right hand man) did a controlled experiment with a Vedic Astrologer specifically, it was not "vague generalities", and he was HIGHLY accurate, on some persons as high as 90%, and when Michael Shermer mixed up two of the subject's readings without telling them (to attempt to suggest that they could apply to anybody), the accuracy plummeted to around 10% to 20% accurate (showing his were very specific to the person), but when he admitted he switched them, and read the right ones back to the right person, the result was back to 80%-90%. So, that these charts were sooo specific, even though he wasn't allowed to meet these people, highly suggests there is something to Vedic Astrology, the deeper type.

I've also seen other skeptics do a strawman astrology test where they just use tabloid astrology mixed with cold reading generalities and then ask to people to tell them which chart is theirs, and they are all the same. But, it's just a strawman. It's not using real Vedic Astrology or Chinese Astrology from an actual Astrologer in those fields. With the Michael Shermer program, he did use a real one, and the video shown how specific the readings can be. Pummeting to very low accuracy when given to the wrong person, even when they are not told about this.
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