Should I trust an online astrologer?
What can astrology do?
Some trust in their horoscope and like to let astrologers look into the future. The others think nothing of the knowledge of the stars. The question remains: does astrology have what it takes for divination? We asked what astrology can really do.
For her book "Gummibärchen für die Seele", the Austrian author Pamela Obermaier has dealt with a wide variety of practices that fall into the field of mysticism or help in life. For this purpose, she and co-author Gabriele Hasmann subjected various applications to practical tests and clarified with experts what the respective practices really have on the box. The woman from Salzburg also looked closely at astrology. We spoke to her as to whether astronomy is really suitable for interpreting the future and the person.
In the course of researching your book, you dealt intensively with astrology. What was your attitude towards it before and has it changed?
Before I had a real insight into this matter, I felt like most of us: On the one hand, I thought all of this was nonsense, on the other hand, it somehow interested and fascinated me. Who doesn't want to "classify" themselves and their counterparts and thereby better assess and understand them? As a teenager I of course read the love horoscopes in various youth magazines, but mostly made fun of them. When I got to know the background and based on my own radix (this is the form in which the personal horoscope is displayed, so to speak, the vessel in which all events are entered in order to be able to visualize it) gradually understood, I found the whole thing much more understandable and extremely exciting.
Can you understand when skeptics dismiss astrology as humbug?
I can absolutely understand that one perceives horoscopes as nonsense - especially when it comes to those in the daily newspapers. I don't feel any different myself! The fact that these horoscopes, of which we are talking here, are equated with astrology, is unfortunately one of the main problems with which serious astrologers have to struggle. Because there is a big difference: Logic already tells us how impossible it is to lump all people who were born within a certain month into one pot simply because of this fact, what their character traits and also whose life orientation concerns.
How true can horoscopes in magazines and daily newspapers really be?
Not at all, I would say! Precisely because these horoscopes only deal with the position of the sun and thus only illuminate one of many aspects. IF they do that at all, because with some it even seems as if there are a certain number of generally formulated statements that are used every time as in the lottery, in order to then choose what could be assigned to the lion today and what the virgin.
Do you read your own horoscope?
I treat horoscopes in magazines and newspapers like messages in fortune cookies: I read them every now and then with childlike curiosity and then smile at their statement and myself - because if there is something in there that I like, then I decide for being happy about it and for believing in it when something good is promised. And if it is different, then better not.
And what about "more serious" astrology?
Serious astrology looks at much more than just the respective zodiac sign: It takes into account exactly where and when someone was born, where the moon was at the minute of birth, where the sun was, all so-called "houses" have a meaning, there is Connections and axes, all planets appear in it - it would now be too extensive to describe all of this, because even in the book it was not that easy to present such a comprehensive method as uncomplicated and compact as possible so that everyone could do something with it can. But in one sentence I can say that it is well worth trying to give real astrology a chance. One can be surprised by their conclusions and curious what kind of help they can offer. Then you can immediately see the difference to a general statement as we know it from the horoscope entries in newspapers that are not to be taken seriously.
Is astrology actually a recognized science?
Astrology is a good example of finding a criterion that distinguishes science from something nonscientific. It is viewed as a teaching that is in the pre-scientific stage, so it is often referred to as pseudoscience. Otherwise, science is primarily interested in astrology from a cultural-historical and religious-scientific perspective. However, it has to be said that astrology was once a recognized science - and that much longer than it is now. After all, she dealt with the laws of nature and their observation and description, which is a typical process for science - as well as collecting empirical evidence. And it still uses mathematics today, and from it above all geometry, to calculate the positions and orbits of planets. Because application is the focus of interest and not research, one could speak more of a craft, which probably better expresses the essence of this method anyway than the term science.
What is astrology based on today?
Astrology practiced today is very much oriented towards psychology, more precisely towards C. G. Jung's depth psychology, which I think only makes it even more interesting. Apart from that, of course - and that is the reason why it has earned its prominent place in the collection of "gummy bears for the soul" - it is also something metaphysical, which is why it can also be assigned to spirituality.
Astrology is fortune telling - to what extent is this popular opinion true?
So, THAT is nonsense for me. Astrology can help to find suitable and less suitable times and phases for certain events or decisions; it can recognize tendencies for a thing, but it cannot precisely predict life events. Fortunately, we have free will and can decide for ourselves what we do and how we act - at every moment of our lives - which is why it is impossible to say what will happen exactly when.
If astrology cannot predict the future, what is it good for?
I would recommend seeing this method as an opportunity - and using it as such - to recognize basic issues in life, to better understand ourselves with our peculiarities, strengths and weaknesses and to deal with difficult times in a more hopeful and optimistic way. But to expect that the personal horoscope will tell us when we will get married, get a raise or move to another city is pointless to problematic.
Roughly speaking - what possibilities does astrology really have?
In principle, astrology is nothing more than a personality grid, something that can be used to better understand yourself and others through a kind of division. For example, it can provide information about how someone sees the world, what values they have, how they will most likely behave in a partnership, how someone deals with crises, how they experience themselves in society, what value friendships and groups are in his life and which topics lie dormant in the unconscious that will one day need to be addressed. And it can help in our personal development by showing these tendencies. Aside from ourselves, it can also help us understand our environment better. Specifically, I am thinking of raising children, because if you gain insight into the needs of your own offspring through a seriously prepared horoscope, it is certainly a great help.
Can you explain that in more detail?
Many a child would like to have a mother chuckle, another would feel overwhelmed by one, another child, in turn, feels that they are not mothered enough, while another child feels wonderfully free with the same mother. You know that with siblings, where one is happy about every hug, but the other quickly defends itself against too much physicality. An exciting topic that we dealt with in great detail in the book.
And where does astrology reach its limits?
Astrology is not a panacea for problems and worries. Especially with illnesses - regardless of whether they are physical or psychological - it naturally reaches its limits. In other words, it cannot, of course, replace a good doctor, psychotherapy or confrontation with other people.
You can find more on the subject in "Gummy bears for the soul" by Pamela Obermaier and Gabriele Hasmann, published by Goldegg Verlag. € 16.95
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