As someone who has become a bit of a convert in the realm of astrology, I find it rather reductive to criticize the belief system out of general respect for the online community. However, I do believe that the general rhetoric that is written as fact that is promoted by online astrologers is rather damaging and should be taken with a grain of salt.
To my understanding, astrology is a mathematical system of charting a logic based on agreed upon statistics that designate certain planets and constellations with specific traits. For example, Jupiter is the planet of luck and positive thinking, Venus romantic relationships and good will, Mars sex, anger and emotional expression (which is different from the Moon’s traits which also are meant to govern emotional expression). Astrology has taken the contemporary zeitgeist by storm: people with little to no knowledge of how the astrological belief system is grounded still take it for granted while reading their horoscopes, because I’m assuming it’s comforting to identify personality traits that might vaguely correlate to your actual personality with what time of year you were born. I don’t say this to denounce astrology, I just believe that this observation is probably true.
I have always loved knowing I’m an Aries. I laugh while typing this, because I’m aware that this identification is so minute and unremarkable in the context of contemporary scientific thought that it might as well not matter at all. Aries are supposed to be forthright, easily angered, and deeply expressive, and I have known since childhood that whether or not these traits are accurate to my personality, perhaps I’ve made them so, through my belief in astrology, without question. My grandmother was also a devoted Taurus, commenting on the various signs of my relatives at times based on their behavior. With this in mind, I think back to the commonly told narrative about how astrology is interpreted today: in the 1970s when it became a boon to newspapers’ success through the newfound publishing of weekly horoscopes, what people didn’t know was that they were actually supposed to apply their “rising signs” or “ascendant” to the horoscope, but instead thanks to a random popular practice that came to be, people applied their sun signs, which are designated by what time of year they were born, instead of the hour which designates the ascendant.
This misconception, which now could be easily dismissed by anyone with a fundamental knowledge of their birth chart, which maps out everything you would need to know about your astrological identity, somehow to me is a metaphor for the way astrology is understood now. What people don’t realize is that professional astrologers take for granted the primitive science as word without observing it in a greater scientific context, which is why astrology is so commonly dismissed as a pseudo-science. However, things like conjunctions, trines, squares and sextiles are not so easily questionable when actually applying the logic of astrology to a greater understanding. These terms, which designate the energetic links between planets, the “houses” they pass through when charted as movement in the sky, and the signs we all know as categorizers of the energy the planets exude, are all fundamentally meant to mean something when one observes how space impacts their emotional world. This to me, presents a serious problem. Modern science has without question denounced these astrological indicators of relevance to the study of the stars as completely moot, because there is no way of tracking or specifying a specific energy that a planet or star might give off.
Unfortunately, this is just a fact. Scientists I’m sure are currently studying things like planetary energy over at NASA, or at least have in the past and their findings are generally accepted by society as factual, making astrology nothing more than a belief system that has gained popularity particularly within the past five decades in the Western world. My objection is: doesn’t the moon control the waves? If our bodies are made of over 70% water, wouldn’t the moon impact something within us as well? The sun rules photosynthesis, which governs all realms of plant growth, and certainly has at least an impact on human skin. What we don’t know about the impacts of other planets on living creatures on Earth is either left to the imagination, or happens to be conceptualized by astrologers and followers of astrology, because they must find it at least interesting in some way. What has been forcibly left to the imagination by society is ultimately not capable of being expanded upon and alas, just moot fiction due to no brave scientist’s desire to expand further upon the possibility that there may be more to the concepts behind astrological beliefs that simply lore.