What does astrology mean?

I am in a psychology class and it is asking why people believe in it and im not sure what astrology is. Thanks in advance to whoever helps me.

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  • 8 years ago
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    Astrology is best understood by learning how it began. Like most urban yet agricultural peoples of the day, the Babylonians had a pantheon of many gods. They also had a well-developed science of observational astronomy, which served the highly utilitarian purpose of providing a calendar— times to plant and to harvest, as well as times of religious festivals, etc. In this observational scheme each bright planet was important, and the priests whose task it was to make the observations naturally named the planets for the gods in their pantheon— Marduk, Isthar, Nergal, etc. It was a fateful naming. By about 1000 BC there was an extensive Babylonian literature of “planetary omens” based entirely on the arbitrary names of the planet-gods. Since Nergal (Mars) was the god of war, a summer in which red planet Nergal shone down brightly from the sky was a good time to wage war (or a time in which risk of war was great). Since Ishtar (Venus) was the goddess of love, a spring night in which Ishtar shone brilliant and high in the West after sunset was a good time to make love, or go looking for love.

    By about 600 BC the Babylonians had devised the twelve-sign zodiac: markers in the sky along the ecliptic, the apparent path which the sun, moon, and five naked-eye planets— Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn— appear to follow in their apparent motion across the sky. The “horoscope,” a crude earth-centered chart of the positions of the planets along the zodiac at a given moment of time, was devised soon after. The oldest known horoscope was made for April 29, 410 BC; historically, this is the true beginning of astrology. During the classical era dominated by first Greece and then Rome, Babylonian astrologers (called “Chaldeans”) set up shop in most of the large urban areas throughout the civilized world. Greek astronomers scoffed at the Chaldean cultus as a ludicrous combination of primitive astronomy and primitive religion, but to no avail— the Greek and later the Roman public embraced astrology as lovingly as they embraced most of the other bizarre and barbaric cults that wandered toward the shores of the Mediterranean looking for converts. That astrology makes no sense with its Babylonian religious underpinnings removed was apparent to thinking people from the very first. Roman statesman Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 - 43 BC) wrote, in 44 BC, a devastating critique of astrology, which is well worth reading today. Among the points made by Cicero was that no one sees or expects any correlation between the weather conditions at the time of birth of a child and the child's later personality or fortunes. Yet clearly the weather— extreme cold or heavy rain or harsh heat— has far more effect on a living thing than dim lights in the night sky. And even if all children born in December were similar in some way— which they are not— how would an astrologer know that these similarities were thus not due to the weather, due to all the children being born into a cold environment, rather than to the environmentally meaningless situation of the sun being in “Sagittarius,” or whatever?

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    Hehehe, I don't think it's astrology trying to be mean. It also says Aries is the most unique. Sagittarius is the luckiest. I think Leo is the most likeable/popular/charismatic. Scorpio is the most intense/powerful. Aquarius is the most intelligent. It's just the way it is. Stating the facts. No opinions are brought into it. Libras normally have small faces, which is probably considered attractive to most. The nose, eyes, and mouth are all very close to each other. Everything is in proportion. Plus, a Libra's facial expression is very bright, happy, and clownish. That may help. Libra is associated with beauty, so it's said to get the most beautiful face.

  • 8 years ago

    In a simple form astrology (not to be confused with astronomy, which is an actual scientific field) is a belief that celestial body alignments may predict the future based on each governing body/planet that a certain zodiac sign is connected with (i.e people in the sing of Aries are "governed" by the planet Mars).

  • 6 years ago

    Astrology is the study of 'why we were born' or 'what is the purpose of this lifetime for me'.We are all born with different purposes in life.That is why there is no one formula for success..nay the definition of success can vary from one personality to another.Jyotisha or Vedic Astrology defines the effect of planetary positions at birth on our life.I have not studied the western system so i will not comment on that.Hope this helps.

    Source(s): Vedic astrology
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  • 8 years ago

    In western parlance Astro means pertaining to stars. Logos means science of learning.so to say learning about the stars.

    In India it is Jyothisha. which meands the light It is apart of ancient Vedas hence it is called Veda-Anga.It is studied to establish the karmic connections of birth, causes of suffering and how to do penance to alliviate the same. It shows the purpose of a birth.

  • 8 years ago

    Astrology is a method of learning to understand ourselves by looking at the universe.

    I have written three short blogs (less that 500 words each) that address this basic question.

    Wary of Astrology?

    http://wp.me/pJ9hq-1

    No One Needs Astrology

    http://wp.me/pJ9hq-8

    Don't Blame Astrology

    http://wp.me/pJ9hq-2o

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