L ` astrology is the whole of the Système S of Croyance S organized in order to obtain information on the terrestrial phenomena starting from the observation of the celestial phenomena. Although popular, it remains discussed, in particular because it is not validated scientifically.
Astrology seems a system of interpretation of the Horoscope (see the dedicated article). Its popular versions are the horoscopes of the reviews or affinities of the Signs of the zodiac (see the popular article Astrologie ). If they are generally regarded as remote and deformed echoes historical astrology, they remain its demonstration and its most widespread expression about it. The popular use of the astrology term almost always returns to the Western astrology , to which this article is mainly devoted. Articles reserved for the astrologies developed in other cultures are proposed with the state of outline (see bonds at the end of the article).
Several directions are attached at the end same of astrology, whose distinction proves to be necessary to clarify a certain number of debates. Indeed, certain astrologers consider their practice only able to describe the features of the personality of an individual, others ensuring that it is possible to describe the various routes of their life, even their distance future.
EtymologyThe word “astrology” comes from the Greek αστρολογία , of άστρον , astron , (" étoile") and λόγος (logos), which has many significances related to the concept of “speech”: - λογία is a suffix generally indicating a discipline or a school subject. Étymologiquement, astrology is only one “speech on the stars”: it is interested mainly in the sun and planets of the solar system.
History of astrology
Historical originGoing back to highest the Antiquity and perhaps even with beyond, astrology was born from the awakening of a relation between the seasons and the apparent movement of the stars , leading the man to diviniser the latter. These considerations then raise mainly of an astronomical practice (which establishes a correlation in fact between the sky chart and the seasons). They bring to formulate the assumption that the movements of the stars are the cause even of these phenomena (and not a correlated phenomenon, consequence of a common cause). Consequently, the work of observation (calculation of the éphémérides, production of Calendar S) is undertaken of face with a work, however distinct, of interpretation . The objective is to establish, on the model of the astronomical observations, a certain number of conjectures about an either weather and calendar, but human influence (Personnalité, Destin). This idea of a correspondence symbolic system between the celestial configuration and the businesses of the world gradually led to the construction of a astrological Symbolisme (see separate article).
The various levels of interpretation (physical conjectures and human conjectures) cohabit a certain time, then are gradually dissociating. This development of the practices will give rise to the Astronomie (which sticks with the observation, description and the calendar predictions ), leaving with astrology the esoteric aspects of conjectures on the bonds between the sky and the control of the human activities.
Its support being the stars, astrology is one of the particularly widespread practices divinatoires in the history of the cultures. One can thus quote the specific existence of astrologies Maya, Arab, Egyptian, Chinese, and of course Western (of which it is mainly question in this article).
AntiquityThe first writings known concerning the stars go back to 5000 years, in the shape of clay shelves on which were consigned all the statements of the planetary movements observed by priests scholars of Mésopotamie. These observations were made within a framework religious. The movement of the stars being perceived like divine will; priests or astrologers serving translators. That can thus be regarded as the origin of the Astronomie.
Of Chaldée, this astronomy-astrology spreads in Greece after the conquests of Alexandre Large the. From there it will be spread in all the Greek empire, in India, Egypt then until the ancient Rome while becoming more structured, less religious and thus more popular. The division of the Sky in twelve zodiacaux signs and the first known horoscope date from fifth century BC In Greece, Hippocrates and Galien (with the example undoubtedly of the Egyptian priests) will make astrology one of the bases of the medicine, associated with the theory of the Four elements.
Parallel to this astrology, of the different systems are formed in China, America précolombienne and undoubtedly in other civilizations. But Chinese astrology and astrology chaldéenne are the only systems having perduré until our days. All the currently known systems of astrology derive from one of these two systems (or of both, case of astrology Tibetan). Astrology chaldéenne is however that which knew the greatest diffusion and the greatest influence.
The Middle Ages and Rebirth
For the Christian period , astrology will know an ambiguous situation. Put at the round of applause of the company by the Church, like all the practices divinatoires, at the time of the Council of Tolède of the year 447, it is practiced in the courses royal, and continuous with being studied by the scholars, even religious (Albert Large the, Master of Thomas d' Aquin, is the author of a treaty of astrology). Charles V dealt with astrology and founded in Paris a college of astrologers. Louis XI consulted to them his in all circumstances. Catherine de Médicis had made raise in its hotel (Hotel of Soissons) a column the top of which she consulted the stars with Nostradamus. Louis XIII was called the Juste, because it had been born under the sign from the Balance. Astrology is also in favor under the emperors Charles IV of the Holy roman Empire, and Charles Quint had prescribed the teaching of this science, which recommended besides many eminent men of the time. It was with the honor in Rome under the popes Sixte IV, Jules II, Leon X, and Paul III.
To the Rebirth, the discovery of the Héliocentrisme of the Solar system (which paradoxically was imagined and defended by the astronomers/astrologers of the time) comes to sap the base anthropocentrist of the astrology which does not find any more its place in the new description of the world by the Science. Pic of Mirandole (then Jerome Savonarole taking again the arguments of this one) largely condemned it. One can notice that it is not the case of astronomers like Galileo and Kepler which practiced astrology, just as Tycho Brahé, or Cassini, the first director of the Observatory of Paris. In the foreword of its Tables Rudolphines , Kepler points out that astrology, very insane that it is, is the girl of a wise mother, and that the insane girl is essential to support and make live his/her mother. It was still true in the time of Kepler, which was obliged to make horoscopes to earn its living.
In France, under the pressure of the Jesuits, Colbert the raye of the academic disciplines and prohibits of it teaching in faculty in 1666. The post of royal astrologer is removed at that time. A Test of justification of legal astrology (BM. Angouleme ms 23) 1696 will never be published.
In England, it will be striped academic disciplines only one century later: Isaac Newton still studies it in university, " to see what there is of truth ". In fact, the first lunar tables calculated then according to the theory of Newton, were initially intended to be used for the observations of the astrologers.
Lights at the time modernAstrology is regarded by the thinkers of the Lights as the archetypal example of the superstition, of the belief in occult and higher forces. For them, to fight astrology seems to raise of a general combat as well as political commitment in favor of secularity and rationalism, against the obscurantism. Enough paradoxically, their critical arguments against astrology appears less Logique S that Rhétorique S (use of mainly polemical arguments or authority rather than a reasoned step).
In this any end of the 18th century, time of triumphing rationalism, the divorce between astronomy and astrology is thus finally marked.
According to certain legends, to which there remains difficult to lend faith, astrology will not be transmitted more than via esoteric schools , than they are lesson maconnic such as the Rosicrucian brotherhood, the hermetic lesson of the Golden Dawn, or more discrete filiations of Master with pupil.
At the 20th century, astrology reappears in almanacs, magazines, then radio broadcasts. Astrology finds also a place considerable in the movement old New .
Its new versions affirm to integrate the values symbolic systems of planets orbiting beyond Saturn and of the Astéroïde S as well as new theories: integrating modern knowledge, she seeks an approach symbolic system based on the Psychologie.
The validity of astrology starts to be studied scientifically in particular through the statistical Astrologie, whose results tend to cancel the existence of the pled effects (see hereafter).
Current practicesAstrology recovers at the beginning of the 21e century of the practices and the very different approaches, so much so that it is righter of speaking about astrologies in the plural.
These astrologies exist in several forms which differ by their symbolic systems and the techniques used, and are applied to a great number of different objects. The symbolic system of the stars and their movements is very flexible, being able to change according to the context and the school of the astrologer. There exist many schools: humanistic astrology, psychological astrology, astrology conditionnalist etc They also differ according to the objects or the fields to which they are applied, that it is for example in psychology, or like forecast, in policy, purse, medicine. Each object has clean symbolic systems and sometimes particular techniques.
Astrologies more currently sails about it in occident are astrology Western, founded on the solar calendar, and the Chinese Astrologie, founded on the Chinese Calendrier. The latter was spread in Western Europe towards the end of the year 1970. These astrologies exist in several forms which differ by their symbolic systems and the techniques used. They also differ according to the objects or the fields to which they are applied, that it is for example in psychology, or like forecast, in policy, purse, medicine. Each object has clean symbolic systems and sometimes particular techniques.
If the source data of Western astrology remain the establishment of a sky chart (see the article Horoscope ), this one is in constant evolution, which induces a certain number of divergences between astrologers. These divergences exist as of the traditional time, relate to various methods for the calculation of the positions of the houses, returning to various schools of interpretation).
At the 20th century, astrology knows an renewed interest with a new approach. Engineers, psychologists and statisticians approach this discipline using a step and scientific means of research. See hereafter.
Today, one can divide Western astrology into three branches:
an individual astrology , which is interested in the topic of birth of an individual,
- * is under the angle of its psychology to make him become aware of itself (astrology strongly influenced by the psychoanalyzing psychology and approaches);
- * is under the angle of its way of life, to indicate the various phases of its life to him, moments of transformation, and periods critical;
- * is under the angle of its relations with the others, by connecting the topics of birth of several people.
- the astrology of the Horoscope S, directly inherited the the Middle Ages, given in vogue by the commercial magazines in its popular version, which claims to predict for each astral sign, main tendencies of the moment. This astrology should probably more be considered under the angle of the social phenomenon, because it is extremely popular in spite of its fundamental inaccuracy. For this reason, this caricature of astrology probably discredits “serious” astrology . Based (when it is established seriously) on a simplified version of the traditional astrological models, the Horoscope is generally regarded by the public which in is fond of delicacies, as a simple distraction without implications.
- the event-driven astrology, which it is a question of predicting the great events or the evolution of the purse. Stock exchange astrology made its appearance in the middle of the years 1990, its goal being to envisage the evolution of the market indexes.
These practices all are today prone to criticisms and controversy (see below).
General informationAstrology is for a long time a subject of controversy and criticisms (philosophical, theological, scientific, epistemological). Primarily developed around the Western astrology , the elements of the debates spread little by little with the whole of the astrological practices. Sometimes condemned in antiquity (astrology, as well as all arts divinatoires, is prohibited by the Bible), it is rejected little by little by the science which reproaches him its rational basic absence. St Augustin, as of the IVe century, ( Of civitate Dei" , VIII, xix ) protest on this basis against the confusion made between astrology and astronomy.
This debate on the causes, although always present, was extended today to an objective criticism of the reality of the effects described by the astrologers. Currently, astrology is not recognized like a science, not laying out of rational bases neither of experimental evidence , nor not being of Réfutabilité necessary to be accepted like scientific theory. Nevertheless, the defenders of astrology affirm that their personal experience shows undeniable effects. A certain number of partisans of astrology admit that their discipline, not having a framework of rigorous reference (scientific methodology, recognized research, checked scientific publication, etc), can constitute the ideal sphere of activity for the charlatans, the whimsical ones and the swindlers. These deviating practices appear to them likely to reinforce the a priori .
Of this report developed a certain number of processes of analyzes and protocols of studies intended to clarify in an objective way reality of the various phenomena (see the section Nature phenomenon studied ).
Referring to the basic principle that it does not have there an effect without cause, science raises two major objections as for reality of the concerned phenomena. The absence of effect (the astrological predictions do not do better than the chance) and the absence of cause (there is no mechanism justifying any influences astral). The systematic research of the effects which led to work in the field of L Astrologie statistical . As for the absence of cause, crippling for a scientist, it is generally not received like a relevant argument by the astrological world, whose vision of the world is based on the analogy more than on the efficient causes.
Legitimacy and legitimation of astrologyIn addition to the absence of shown bases (no identified causality, absence of objectively observable recurring effects) and the development of these psychological explanations, many critics were born as for the efforts made by a certain number of astrologers to legitimate in an artificial way their discipline. In a way similar so that Hakes and Pinch showed in parapsychology, one can consider that a small medium of astrologers " mime" attitudes of the scientific community. They make experiments of the scientific type, they publish their results, and endeavor to give them a social visibility. They thus try to constitute a scientific community starting from a concerning field traditional beliefs. There one can see the effects of the scientifisation of our company, where science becomes a source of legitimacy impossible to circumvent. The critical term of Pseudo-science , characterizing the practices which assert " verbalement" the scientific rigor without applying the principles of them, can thus apply to astrology.
Difficulty of the dialog
ProblemsThe astrologers conversely notice a great difficulty of dialog with the skeptics. They underline the demonstrations of a hostility of principle vis-a-vis project studies collaboratives. According to them, the skeptics reject a matter which they refuse to examine, in addition evoking the existence of a " social pressure against the astrologie". The main reason of the rejection of the scientists for astrology appears thus more cultural to them than really rational.
The negative image (charlatanry) of astrology would imply that the scientist who would wish to defend it publicly runs the risk to be discredited by his pars. This objection is partially valid, as it clarifies the internal tension between " science établie" and the freedom of scientific research (fields of studies). The critical of astrology by the philosophers of the Lights remains in this respect the historical example most famous of a " critical of principe".
However, it is false to say that scientists and skeptics never studied the question. Quite to the contrary, of many protocols of experimentation were proposed to the astrologers since the years 1970, and of many researchers of the beginning of the century harnessed themselves with a statistical study of astrology (statistical Astrologie). The experiments carried out in this field are however limited by the absence of a precise definition of the sought effect, and the difficulties of its possible characterization.
The motivation of the fight against the obscurantism is not in oneself an argument against astrology. It can nevertheless underlie a really argued speech. Confusion between ideological and argumentative dimensions generates an often sterile debate, not easily analyzable. One will quote for example the case of proclamation against astrology published in 1975 by a certain number of celebrities. Those present simultaneously critical facts, and polemical assertions, in particular when it describe astrology like a “superstition resting on the credulity of people”. This devalorization is often the only part of proclamation retained by the partisans of the astrology, which summarizes it like simple a " rejection without examen" of their practice.
Argument of the epistemological difficulty of the dialogEpistemological impossibility to show the inexistence of a thing illustrates partially the intrinsic difficulty of the debate. It is indeed impossible to reject " a priori " the possible existence of an influence of the stars (“ absence of proof is not proof of the absence”). However, the long story of research on astrology - practical predictive essentially - to date not having succeeded, one has an accumulation of studies refuting a great number of the popular paradigms of astrology (see part devoted to the study of the paradigms of astrology). Consequently, if there exists an influence of the stars, this one seems not to fall within the competence of existing astrologies. Indeed, beyond the search for a theory showing the possibility of an effect of the stars, methodical work seeking to prove the existence of correlations between the supposed astrological events and their effects leads to the invalidation of the astrological paradigms. However, to be able to validate the assumptions of astrology, it is ab minimum necessary to observe an effect, before even seeking to explain some its holding.
The argument of the epistemological difficulty of the dialog appears in fact fallacious. Indeed, astrology is a practice which does not provide the tools of its clean Réfutabilité, and which remains by the fact out of the field of analysis of epistemology. The attitude of the astrologers is in fact the example retained by Popper of a speech which refuses its own falsification (one understands by there his possibility of being contradicted, refuted ), thus prohibiting an objective criticism of its assertions.
Sometimes astrology seeks to produce the illusion of its refutability. On this subject, it should be noted that certain studies undertaken by astrologers retain experimental devices which tend to produce systematically positive results.
Question of the passion of the publicThe whole of these polemics presents a " case of école" of an undeniable interest for the sociology of sciences and epistemology.
The passion the vast public ones for a continuous practice without effects shown to be questioned, in a very rigorous and critical way often, by a great number of epistemologists and sociologists. The representatives of the skeptics (Anglo-Saxon skeptics or French) explain the interest for the Horoscope S by the Effet Barnum and its corollaries. These analyzes lead them to publicly regard astrology as a “superstition resting on the credulity of people”. This is the position generally adopted by the scientific world.
The report of the passion of the public also invites to a double reflection on its economic implications, but also on its psychological effects (induced behaviors by the belief).
Nature of the phenomenon studied by astrology
Confrontation with physical and astronomical knowledgeIf astrology and Astronomie have their historical roots in common (see historical Origine ), the two practices are now entirely detached and perfectly distinct (if it is not in their relative homophony, always source from confusions). Astrology cannot be high with the row of physical sciences because of thin the reproducibility of its results and of the absence of Causalité established.
Real physical effect of the stars
- Influence of the stars
Influence of the planets
Problems of the relationship between signs and constellationsThe signs of the zodiac, which are used as framework of reference and analysis, also correspond to Constellations located on the ecliptic . If the astrological features are associated in the passing of planets within the astronomical limits of these constellations, this point poses two new problems.
The methods of calculating used by the astrologers refer to a " chart of the ciel" immutable, compared to the vernal Point fixes. In glance, astronomy for a long time made the report of the " déplacement" constellations in the sky (of 30° or a sign every 2200 years). This drift is related to the established phenomenon of Précession of the equinoxes . The phenomenon of the Précession of the equinoxes involves a divergence between the real position of the stars to the birth and their position affirmed by the allotted sign: today the “astrological zodiac” is shifted of almost a sign compared to the zodiac of stars. The passages of planets within the limits of the constellations thus do not correspond to that of planets in the signs. This fact led to an astronomical argument, often presented by the detractors of astrology: the precise reports/ratios described in the horoscopes really based on quantified astrological conjectures (astrological calculations) describe a completed inventory of fixtures since several hundred years. This argument recently led to the creation of a sidereal Astrologie, based either to internal measures with the solar system, but on the real position of stars.
In addition, at the time of its race along the zodiac throughout the year, the sun crosses thirteen constellations, the twelve of the zodiac more Ophiuchus. The latter does not form part of the constellations taken into account by astrology. More serious, the planets - which can move away from the ecliptic seven to eight degrees) cross sometimes other constellations: Orion, the Whale, the Corbel or the Cut, the Sextant…
In practice, these false arguments result from a confusion (voluntary or not) between signs and constellations of the zodiac. " signes" are only regular sectors of 30°, conventionally deducted starting from the vernal Point. They are only one system of location arbitrary, and used besides by the astronomers until the 18th century. They right from the start have only one remote relationship with the Constellation S of the same name, whose limits and positions are obviously irregular.
Possible prospectionsIf the gravitational influence of the Moon is completely measurable, the activity of the sun, it, is a phenomenon still very badly known and no influence on the biological mechanisms and human psychology was still shown. It is conceivable to prospect these fields still badly known, and to gather more precise data confirming or cancelling the existence:
- of an influence of the position of planets on the position of the center of gravity of the solar system compared to the sun, and influences it which could result from it on the activity from this last;
- of a direct gravitational influence of the moon and its reflection of the sunlight;
- of a capacity of the alive mechanisms to put itself in resonance with cyclic phenomena (most known being obviously circadian biological rates/rhythms).
Other nontraditional attempts were imagined following the critics of the scientific world.
- the sidereal Astrologie is resulting from the idea that the stars had to be followed, and not the vernal point. It is this approach which is followed by the tradition Indian and Eastern of astrology, but its Western version constitutes a construction recent (and rather artificial) without direct link with these traditions.
- heliocentric Astrology resulting from the idea it is not the ground which is the center of the solar system (It is probably founded, but one cannot brutally pass from one system to the other without adapting the manner of interpreting.)
If imagination can extrapolate means by which the positions of planets would influence us, for the transits and synastries, the question is even thornier since it would moreover be necessary to highlight planetary influences on biological systems which “would have recorded” a trace of the positions of planets.
In the same way, to highlight a physical explanation of the progressions would be even more difficult, insofar as the passage symbolic system “one year = one day” does not rest on any objectivable basis, if it is not precisely the base symbolic system. Nevertheless, there is necessary to remain careful before refuting it, insofar as the brain uses mechanisms symbolic systems. To take a very bad example (it would be necessary to find better, founded on unconscious mechanisms): in the majority of the cases, people however cross a red light no physical mechanism is not able to explain this behavior.
Setting in question of the effects observedThe absence of causes identified does not prohibit to examine the possibility of possible regular effects (of which the discovery would allow, if necessary, to better identify the causes). The statistical Astrologie is precisely the discipline which affirms to study possible regular “effects”, without is not identified of cause for these purposes.
Confrontation with a control sampleContrary to other esoteric disciplines, astrology announces that it can envisage, in particular, of the very precise and easily verifiable events. In this direction, protocols of tests making it possible to judge it are easy to set up. These protocols compare the forecasts of the astrologers on precise subjects with random forecasts emitted by skeptics or computers. The forecasts of the astrologers are then validated if they are better qualities that the random forecasts. One can quote the test on 22 forecasts of the year 2000 between Elisabeth Tessier which writes regularly that it locates her level of success at 80%, even 90%, a skeptic and a computer. Result: Computer 8 successes, Elisabeth Tessier and Sceptique 7 successes. Many experiments of this type took place. The circle zetetic of the university of Nice created the international Défi zetetic. The interest of this last test is that in exchange of a free test, the astrologer receives 200.000 euros in the event of success. As the financial risk is null for an enormous potential profit, one can estimate that the astrologers not presenting itself to these tests, do not believe in their gift. After a few years of operation, the test was stopped fault of combatant. Curiously, very few astrologers contributed, one can thus conclude from it that the part of the population which believes less in astrology are the astrologers themselves. All confused disciplines, there were 250 tests and zero been successful
Another test carried out on 100 people who judged the exactitude of the forecasts that one made on them showed that the astrologers had exactly the same success rate as a random system
See also: statistical Astrology
Following many publications
In 1993 appears however, in " the books conditionnalists " , a statistical study which would show a correlation between the aspects Mercury-Saturn and qualities of player of failure. Although the theoretical object of this study is extremely restricted, the confirmation of its validity would contradict the dogma of the impossibility of an influence of the stars. This study is however not from the scientific press recognized at the university level, and must thus be taken with all the necessary precautions.
The defenders of astrology, like certain detractors of the Social sciences, connect sometimes astrology with the Social sciences, asserting use of statistical research and a study of effects without established physical cause. This comparison is obviously fallacious, the statistical Astrologie representing an activity very different from astrology itself. It should be noted that the statistical Astrologie is besides a very marginal activity, whose basic methodological principles are not necessarily known astrologers.
If astrology relatively clearly defines the various significances of the elements of a birth chart (see astrological Symbolisme), the stage of interpretation on the other hand is not clearly codified. In fact, the complexity of this interpretation and its subjective nature rather seems to connect it with a Art. The results being always presented like related on the “talent” and the experiment of the astrologer (to be admissible with the eyes of its defenders, the analysis must be made by a " expert compétent"). Consequently, it is impossible to study the current astrological methods according to the scientific criteria of reproducibility. This aspect is highly criticized by the skeptics, this argument precise being precisely used by the charlatans to operate a selection a posteriori their predictions. It was shown by Henri Broch that the variability of the results presented by subjects considered gifted corresponds precisely to the results of predictions " aléatoires". This demonstration, very easily reproducible, is consultable in the work " Become wizard, become savant".
In parallel, another approach is done day with astro-psychologists who in parallel develop a new current of astrological thought, based on the knowledge opened by the psychoanalysis. They reject the scientific step applied to astrology and the cogency challenges some. Carl Gustav Jung which defends at this time the concepts of symbolism, of Synchronicité and Archétype, fears that “the levelling influence of the great numbers,
Question of predictive successesThe astrological predictions and conjectures are subjected to the double question of the precision of formulated information and the subjectivity of its recipient. He seems interesting for which handles the results of a prediction analyzing the degree of information that it contains, i.e. at the same time his real informative character (see Effet Barnum) and the quantity of elements presented.
Several elements quoted at the preceding points ( confrontation with a control sample and statistical approach ) bring an objective explanation to the existence of many predictive successes on behalf of the astrologers. Indeed, the statistical illusion which consists in presenting only the " succès" (case of the characterized frauds) that is to say to remember only the efficient predictions (purely psychological phenomenon) explains in a rigorous way a real part of success present in the imaginary popular one.
In addition, certain predictive successes are explained by the probability objectifies occurrence of an event. Famous example: to predict the death of a pope in the year, during the last years of the life of Jean-Paul II, was for the astrologers an apparently easy bet within sight of the very bad health of sovereign pontiff. Its longevity cancelled year after year these predictions, presented like solids. It should be noted that the year of its death, these same astrologers could enter this prediction like a " succès".
The predictive assessments of the astrologers (recapitulation of the right predictions, at the end of a series of meetings or one year) present generally only the " succès" predictive, occulting the errors. If one supposes the equal precision of the predictions, this comparison would however prove interesting. The constitution of a great number of these predictive assessments by the Zététiciens shows, according to the model presented higher, than successes are ascribable randomly in all the studied cases.
Behaviors induced by the belief in astrologySerious studies show finally that the belief in astrology induces a modification of the behaviors of the believers, who can present a real tendency to conform their actions with the " prédictions" horoscope. The factor Psychologique thus appears essential in the comprehension of the passion for astrology, like in the interpretation of the phenomena.
Astrology and company
Astrology and political powerIn the Roman Empire, while at the same time astrology is very popular, the astrologers were put out the law by decree as of 130 before J. - C. the " mode" astrological continuing, the emperor Tibère sets up a restrictive legislation of the practices divinatoires and imposes quality standards on the occupation of astrologer (under the suggestion of its adviser, itself astrologer). These legislations are renewed one century later by Hadrian, itself astrologer amateur.
One finds the same concern later thousand years, when Alphonse X of Castille, author of treaties astronomical and astrological, enacts that " the divination of the future by the stars is authorized for the people correctly trained with astronomy ".
Until the end of the 20th century, in France, the Penal code comprised in its regulatory part the R-34 article sanctioning " people who make trade guess or to forecast ". This article was deleted by the reform of the penal code, under the presidency of François Mitterrand.
One can nevertheless notice that the Law sanctions practices and facts, not of the thoughts: these prohibitions are thus not addressed to astrology as such, but to the social disturbances which the practices of the charlatans involve who are based on astrology. In a sense, in the field of astrology, the law does not sanction the undue influence of the stars, but well the undue influence of the astrologers.
The modern industry of astrology
See also: the modern industry of astrology
Question of the free willIn the Tetrabiblos , Ptolémée answers already the central criticism of astrology, its bond with the determinism, while affirming: “The stars incline but do not oblige”. In the same way, it stresses the importance of the situation of birth of the subject (genetic and social heredity) in interpretations: " the sky does not give to the man his practices, his history, its happiness, his/her children, his richness, his wife… but it works its condition ".
The relai of this criticism is taken by the theologists, for whom the astrological doctrines endanger the concept of individual responsibility of the man vis-a-vis his actes.On finds trace of this concern as of biblical prohibition (Deutéronome 18:10 - 12): " One will not find at home anybody who makes the trade of soothsayer and magus " , prohibition relayed by the mockeries of the prophets (for example, Isaïe 47:12 - 14). At the 5th century, the council of Tolède declares " if somebody believes duty to add faith to astrology or the divination, that it is anathema ". Au 12th century, Thomas d' Aquin written, in its Summa Theologica: “Much of men obey their passions, which the wise one resists. This is why, generally, which is predicted according to the observation of the stars about the human actions is checked”, the human actions in question relating to for example the ploughings or the navigation , on which it mentions the influence of the the Moon. But it also indicates, taking again an argument of Origène: “ it is necessary well to take care not to believe that the freedom of the man is subjected to the influence of the stars ; because then, there would be no more free will, without whom the men would not make any act of virtue, worthy of rewards, nor no ill deed which deserved to be punished”. He is thus opposed to the integral astral determinism , which would lead to the negation of the free will and the idea of a planetary production (and thus heretic) of divine (cf Dante).
For the theologist, it is not the idea that the stars can have an influence on the human behavior which is in oneself condemnable. What is " an abomination in front of the Eternal " (Dt 18:12) is to attach an absolute importance to this possible influence at the point to suggest that the destiny " is écrit" , and thus that the men are not free.
- Far from us to let impress by the determinism and the fate which the astrologers propagate (even without wanting it), let us release us, and decrease the stars. That they light us and help us, but without touching our full responsibility and liberté. (Thomas d' Aquin, Lettre with Réginald de Piperno)
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