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Thread: Science and Astrology

  1. #1

    Science and Astrology

    Robert Tulip Says:

    I recently read an interesting article by Phil Plait of Bad Astronomy on the relation between science and astrology. I would like to engage with Phil’s arguments in light of Michel Gauquelin’s statistical proof through analysis of large datasets that positions of planets at birth do correlate, often with probabilities of less than one in a million, with astrological expectations. I argue here that Gauquelin’s work has an equivalent paradigmatic status to the Michelson-Morley experiments in preparing the way for Einstein’s new mathematical synthesis in the theory of relativity, and that new scientific research into the basis of astrology is currently producing a paradigm shift as profound as the Copernican rejection of geocentrism.

    Basis of astrology
    1. These comment from my own inter-disciplinary perspective, combining philosophy, science and astrology, present an argument for the rational basis of astrology. Because of my interest in the possibility of a rigorous astrology, I emphasise here the scientific astronomical nature of the signs.

    2. It is sometimes said that the stars are too far away to determine signs, and that anyway precession makes the signs invalid. This common view shows ignorance of the nature of the tropical zodiac – the basis of the signs determined by equinoxes and solstices. Conventional western astrology has nothing to do with the stars, being based solely on the seasons of the earth and the movement of the planets.

    3. The tropical zodiac, the path of the sun through the sky, has four points of change at the solstices and equinoxes. This creates a four-fold rhythm, equating to the seasons. Astrology divides each quarter in three to give the twelve signs. The question arises, why twelve signs and not four or eight? I postulate a reasonable explanation for this traditional observation using chaos theory and evolutionary logic.

    4. To explain this claim, it is essential to place human life in cosmic context. If I imagine the sun as the size of a human being, the earth would be the size of a pea ten metres away, Jupiter would be an apple about forty metres away, and the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, would be on the other side of our planet earth.

    5. If our solar system were the size of a coin, the next star would be 100 metres away and our Milky Way galaxy would be the size of the continental USA. The point here is that our solar system is incredibly isolated in cosmic terms, like a single ant on a kitchen table. And within our isolated system, 99.8% of which is the sun, we have near total stability of the planetary orbits, which have barely changed since the major catastrophes of four billion years ago when the earth-moon system was established by major collision – creating the earth’s stable tilt causing the seasons. Rare Earth – Why Complex Life is Uncommon in the Universe – presents a brilliant scientific summary of our astounding origins (reviewed at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/038...lance&n=283155

    6. In the midst of a hostile galaxy, we know the spinning whirlpool nebula of our sun coalesced about five billion years ago into our stable solar system. After the first billion years or so, life evolved on earth, and then remained microscopic for more than three billion years until the Cambrian evolutionary explosion 560 million years ago. Over this long period, the moon has orbited the earth more than fifty billion times, and (at current rate of wobble) the equinox has precessed around the zodiac more than 150,000 times. All the DNA of earth has evolved in this stable cosmic context.

    7. Richard Dawkins argues persuasively in The Selfish Gene and other books that cumulative adaptation to subtle environmental factors is a sufficient explanation for the evolution of life – and that an organism which is better adapted to even a minor factor will in the long run out-compete another organism which lacks that adaptation when both are in the same niche. I agree with Dawkins on this, and note that the stable rhythms of the seasons and planets have been a permanent unchanging part of the context of all life. The planets are minor in their immediate effects compared to terrestrial factors, but they compensate by permanent stability, so it can be expected that organisms which are adapted to their rhythms will have acquired a subtle advantage. Our adaptation – considered in genetic terms over billions of years - is to our local cosmic environment, which is not the earth in isolation but the solar system. Michel Gauquelin, in books such as The Spheres of Destiny and The Cosmic Clocks, gives a number of statistical examples of planetary effects. From simple cases such as the mussels taken from the Atlantic to a dark room in Chicago which adapted to the 25 hour cycle of the moon in the new location, to the surprising fact that traditional descriptors for jovial, martial and saturnine are biographically more commonly used of people born when these planets are rising, such as successful sportsmen who are more likely to be born when Mars is rising.

    8. Our unity with our cosmic context can be illustrated by comparing us to trees, which exhibit fractal self-similarity at all levels from the trunk down to the veins of each leaf. A human being is like a leaf on the tree of the sun, exhibiting self-similarity with the system and an organic connection to the whole. To illustrate what this means for astrology, consider this experiment in fluid dynamics. Fill a vat with ten heavy liquids, each a different colour, viscosity and quantity, and rotate the vat at a fixed speed. At random intervals drill a core sample of the mixing fluids, like a glacial ice core. It should be possible in principle to determine precisely when each core was taken, by study of the amount of mixing of colours. The unique character of each moment in time will be displayed, with each moment having definite links to its origin. If the core samples are then put back in the vat, they will evolve with the rest of the mix, but the contents of each sample will be marked uniquely by the shock of its moment of separation.

    9. Each individual’s natal chart is like a core from this experimental vat – displaying the moment when we budded from the cosmic whole – somewhat like an exposed photographic film is a record of one specific instant. Our natal chart, Gauquelin argues, also displays the genetic decision of the foetus as to the moment of birth that would best suit its character and purpose, as Gauquelin demonstrates by the non-appearance of planetary effects in statistical samples of induced births. For this reason needless choice of caesarean and induced births and failure to record exact birth times are breaches of the rights of the child.

    10. So back to the matter of why there are twelve signs. The question is why should the fourfold seasonal division of the tropical year be divided in three to produce the twelve signs? The issue here is the relative power of the different rhythms of time, and whether there is any factor dividing the year in three to ‘interfere’ with the duple solar division. It is here that the moon’s relation to earth comes into play. The moon, our partner planet, circles the earth about three times each quarter, establishing the month. This permanent rhythm may be interpreted in terms of the idea from complexity theory of ‘entrainment’, on which http://www.thecompounder.com/binauralbeats.html#entrain provides a useful overview.

    11. What is “entrainment”? http://www.physics.ubc.ca/~berciu/TE...YS349/alex.pdf explains that when pendulums or clocks are ‘coupled’ through contact with one wall, they fall into step or are entrained, through common vibration. The description of entrainment of firefly lights is also worth reading - showing that events can be linked in surprising ways. Another good example is that soldiers break step when marching over bridges, because the natural vibratory oscillation of the bridge might become entrained with the soldiers’ steps, and the bridge could become increasingly unstable and collapse.

    12. The relevance to the moon and the signs is as follows. The seasons of the earth have a regular permanent rhythm, marked by the four points of the equinoxes and solstices each year. This rhythm of the earth may be compared to the natural vibratory rate of the bridge in the example above. On top of earth’s annual rhythm, the moon orbits earth about once a month, creating a second rhythm. This is like the soldiers marching in step in the example, interfering with the annual earth-sun rhythm to cause it to oscillate to the earth-moon beat. These two rhythms, the month and the year, together with the day and the great year, are the primary temporal structures of the earth. All life has evolved to harmonise with these permanent unchanging rhythms, in accordance with the scientific principal of cumulative adaptation. If we think of the year as like the bridge in the example, oscillating around four points, and overlay the moon, dividing each quarter in roughly three, it makes sense – considering the complexity and sensitivity of life - that over the immense period of the four billion years of life our genes would have combined these two cycles deep within their nature, through cumulative adaptation, to form a natural twelve part annual rhythm of life. This is what we call the tropical zodiac signs. The soldiers’ step does not have to be an exact fraction of the bridge period of oscillation to set up a sympathetic vibration in the bridge - entrainment results from a rough match. The 354 day lunar year is close enough to the solar year to entrain it against the month.

    13. The effects of other planets are miniscule by comparison to the sun and moon, but still very real, especially at the subtle level of the psyche. The near-total stability of the seasons is the primary rhythm. In a sense this primary period ‘looks for’ a natural division within each quarter. The biggest physical regular period within each quarter is of course the lunar month, which causes the quarter to naturally divide in three equal parts, creating the signs.

    14. http://ludix.com/moriarty/entrain.html comments “The moon and sun are the most pervasive entraining influences in our environment. The entire planet is under their sway. But you don’t need a cosmic mass to initiate entrainment. Even a very modest rhythmic impulse, given the right frequency and insistent repetition, is enough to coax any elastic system into significant oscillation. The destruction of the Tacoma Narrows bridge by a passing breeze is a compelling case in point.”

    15. The natural binary rhythm of the seasons is entrained to the lunar rhythm - “locking” the earth’s perpetual rhythmic vibration to the outside source of the moon. Without such entrainment the statistical findings of Sachs (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/075...lance&n=283155) would have no scientific basis. The moon has circled the earth 50 billion times, since before life evolved. The result is that the division of each season naturally falls into three because of the moon’s effect, giving the physical basis for the twelve signs of astrology.

    16. Within this twelve-fold annual rhythm, what else can we see? Astrology grounds its interpretations in simple numerical physical patterns. The claim is that the cycle of twelve is divided in duple, triple and quadruple patterns. Each second sign is positive or negative, each third sign is cardinal, fixed or mutable, and each fourth sign is fire, earth, air or water. The relation between the triple and quadruple rhythms defines the twelve signs. All the symbolism of each sign falls out of these twelve combinations, from Aries as cardinal fire to Pisces as mutable water.

    17. Through this twelve part annual temporal structure of the earth, the wandering planets form harmonic aspects with each other - focussing each other's energies in the temporal rhythms of the world.

    Robert Tulip

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    I would like to engage with Phil’s arguments in light of Michel Gauquelin’s statistical proof through analysis of large datasets that positions of planets at birth do correlate,
    You seem to base a lot of your reasoning on this study. Are you familiar with it?

  3. #3
    Gauquelin's work may be referenced from http://cura.free.fr/gauq/11gdcura.html#**

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    ...new scientific research into the basis of astrology...

    The claim that there is "new scientific research" into astrology is simply not true.

    Probably not a good way to start a thread on a science board.

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    Quote Originally Posted by R.A.F. View Post
    [b]The claim that there is "new scientific research" into astrology is simply not true.
    There may well be. You mean, he seems to be calling Gauquelin’s work "new"?

  6. #6
    the wave pattern of astrology will collapse when examined and there will be no effect.


    I'm partly serious.

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    Unfortunately for him, Michel Gauquelin allowed his work to be tested by a French Committee which resulted in a statistical comparison that revealed no predictive value in Michel Gauquelin’s work.

    However, that is what science does -- allows for new theories to be tested to determine if they can predict results when the tests are duplicated by others.

    Of course, astrologers will ignore any scientific results that demonstrate that astrology is bunk.

    http://www.astrosociety.org/educatio...strology3.html
    Last edited by aurora; 2006-Dec-17 at 11:37 PM. Reason: added the link

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    I remember a news report a few years ago on the
    correlation of starsigns with car thieves. Out of
    a sample of several hundred there was an
    incredably smooth variation from a peak in
    summer signs to a minimum of winter. More born
    in the summer. Of course this may be the general
    trend of births but it did suggest an old
    belief that summer babies become more
    extrovert than winter ones.

  9. #9

    Science & Astrology

    http://66.201.42.16/viewitem.php3?id...9&kbid=ionsikc summarises peer review of Gauquelin from one of the worlds leading statistical psychologists at the University of London. Hans Eysenck has carefully reviewed the Gauquelin's work, and concludes: "Emotionally, I would prefer the Gauquelins results not to hold, but rationally, I must accept that they do. . . . We can find no valid major criticism of their conclusions, methods, or statistics. . . . We feel obliged to admit that there is something here that requires explanation. . . . The findings are inexplicable but they are also factual; . . . they cannot just be wished away because they are unpalatable or not in accord with the laws of present day science. . . . Perhaps the time has come to state quite unequivocally that a new science is in the process of being born."

    According to Will Keepin (same url above), "three skeptical groups in Belgium, United States, and France launched independent experiments in an attempt to debunk Gauquelins Mars effect for sports champions. To their shock and dismay, each of these new studies actually confirmed Gauquelins results! Thus, over a thirty-year period, three skeptical groups in three different countries replicated the Mars effect, which has a probability due to chance of less than 1 in 5 million."

    The claim that Gauquelin has been refuted is simply wishful thinking on the part of a scientific establishment for whom astrology has come to assume totemic status as a symbol of irrationality. I am not one of those astrologers who wishes to avoid evidence, but a philosopher intrigued by the cultural reasons for the intense scientific hostility to astrology. In working through these issues it is necessary to separate the entertainment of superficial horoscopes from their real scientific underpinnings, which are my subject. I note none of my critics here have so far engaged with my substantive argument but instead have engaged in superficial deflections.

    The most substantive critique I have found on Gauqelin was from a skeptic who made the farcical assertion that French parents may have colluded with doctors to write down birth times (eg Mars or Jupiter rising) which would produce the Gauquelin effects. This criticism ignores the fact that astrology was quite unpopular among the community under study, making such a skewing of the data grossly implausible. Because scientists want to believe this criticism they have not investigated the empirical story behind it, instead accepting unfounded rumours of refutation.

    kindly

    Robert Tulip

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    2. It is sometimes said that the stars are too far away to determine signs, and that anyway precession makes the signs invalid. This common view shows ignorance of the nature of the tropical zodiac – the basis of the signs determined by equinoxes and solstices. Conventional western astrology has nothing to do with the stars, being based solely on the seasons of the earth and the movement of the planets.
    . . . And their passage relative to stars.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    . . . And their passage relative to stars.
    With respect, this comment repeats the ill-informed view that the arbitrary constellations which happen to be behind each point on the zodiac are seen as having a causal relationship to astrological observations. This may have been the case 2000 years ago, but is no longer so. Astrology uses the tropical zodiac (based on earth's seasons) not the sidereal zodiac (based on constellations). Debunking such a straw man is as valid as debunking chemistry by talking about phlogiston.

  12. #12
    Well then, let's just jump to the big question. What is the nature of this force that astrologers know that mainstream science has not detected? I think that mainstream science has a pretty decent understand of gravity, electro-magnetic, weak, and strong forces. Why hasn't this astrological force shown up in any experiement? If the moon is so controlling, shouldn't we have picked up on this force by now? How is this force related to distance from the moon, sun, etc.? How does this force change during the day? What I mean is that since the moon's oribit's radius is about 385,000 km, and earth's radius is about 6400 km, during the day we will range from 391,400 to 378,600 km from the moon. That is a somewhat small range, about 3% or so, but some cleverly designed experiments can definately pick up 3%. Have these experiments been documented and confirmed?

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Bignose View Post
    Well then, let's just jump to the big question. What is the nature of this force that astrologers know that mainstream science has not detected? I think that mainstream science has a pretty decent understand of gravity, electro-magnetic, weak, and strong forces. Why hasn't this astrological force shown up in any experiement? If the moon is so controlling, shouldn't we have picked up on this force by now? How is this force related to distance from the moon, sun, etc.? How does this force change during the day? What I mean is that since the moon's oribit's radius is about 385,000 km, and earth's radius is about 6400 km, during the day we will range from 391,400 to 378,600 km from the moon. That is a somewhat small range, about 3% or so, but some cleverly designed experiments can definately pick up 3%. Have these experiments been documented and confirmed?
    These are good questions which I believe can have clear answers. However, the questions presume a misconceived understanding of the mechanism of astrology. I submit here that a big part of the explanation of the mathematics of astrology is to be found in the mechanism of wave harmonics structuring the gravitational relations between the earth and the sun and planets, and in the use of fractal geometry to model astrological rhythms.

    Astrology, for the purpose of this discussion, should be restricted to the sphere of mathematical logic, ignoring speculations in the unscientific domains of spiritualism and magic, and also ignoring culturally popular forms such as newspaper horoscopes which are entertainment and not science.

    I postulate that any real effects of astrology do not rely on any force other than those already known to physics but can be explained mathematically through the operation of physical mechanisms which are complex instances of the force of gravity. So to speculate about unknown forces is a blind alley. The mathematical challenge is to theorise a mechanism operating within known physical laws to explain documented astrological effects such as Gauquelin’s observation of compelling statistical correlations.

    The underlying biological framework is the Darwinian mechanism of cumulative adaptation. This is explained at some length in my initial post where the basic argument is that our DNA, much of which is nearly four billion years old, has evolved in a cosmic context where its environment, properly considered, is the solar system, and where the rhythms of the seasons are deeply imbedded in all life.

    The next question is why our genes should be sensitive to planetary effects. It is well known that a gene which is sensitive to an environmental reality is over time more adaptive than another gene in the same niche which is not similarly sensitive. To move beyond this general observation, we must show how the planets are an environmental reality.

    As noted previously in my comparison of the solar system against the Milky Way as equivalent in ratio to a dime against the USA, the long stable isolation of our sun and its detritus justifies considering our solar system as a unit, like a vast whirlpool in space. And pace Brownlee & Ward, our hold on life is incredibly tenuous and precarious, part of a stable orbiting system in which all parts have clear rhythmic relations.

    Just as a thought experiment, imagine if the Vogon blasters of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy fame decided to vaporise the planet Venus. What would happen to the earth once the near-permanent 8/13 orbital relation with our hot sister was terminated? Would we drift out to collide with Mars in a few million years or fly off at some unpredictable angle? The point is that such stable relations as that between Earth and Venus are imbedded at the origin of the gravitational rhythms of our world.

    In acoustics and telecommunication, the harmonic of a wave is a component frequency of the signal that is an integer multiple of the fundamental frequency. For a sine wave, it is an integer multiple of the frequency of the wave. For example, if the frequency is f, the harmonics have frequency 2f, 3f, 4f, etc. In musical terms, harmonics are component pitches of a harmonic tone which sound at whole number multiples above the named note being played on a musical instrument. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harmonic)

    The hypothesis is that the wave relations which form musical harmony are analogous to the earth’s rhythmic relations with the sun and planets. Considering the line between earth and each planet as a vector, the vectors with any group of planets are observed by astrology to reinforce each other when they are together, and also when they are half, one third and one quarter of the way from each other around the circle, etc, in ways with different qualities (opposite, trine, square) just as different musical harmonics have different qualities (octave, fifth, third). Points around the circle which are not an even fraction are unrelated. This harmonic effect provides the underlying mathematical framework for astrology. It explains why the small variance in distance of elliptical orbits is irrelevant – the acuity of a planet’s effects on earth depend entirely on its relational position vis-à-vis other planets (and its house position), and its distance is effectively just an underlying constant.

    Most recently, although not entirely rigorously, Richard Tarnas has presented a series of observations in his 2006 book Cosmos and Psyche of the combined effects of the outer planets which illustrate this harmonic principle in operation. As to the question why Uranus should be associated with innovation and Jupiter with expansion, etc, I do not know, but it is certainly an empirical observation which can be tested statistically. I believe Tarnas presents a rich vein of material for epidemiological research. For example, analysis of population statistics against birth and death dates would show if any planetary aspects affect mortality rates. Do people born when Jupiter is conjunct the Sun live longer than people born when Saturn is conjunct Pluto? Such a study would be a small desk job for an appropriate expert, but to my knowledge it has never been done because of the general odium astrology attracts. Instead, the negative studies of time twins etc are generally either looking for evidence against astrology or trying to reveal something far too ambitious, and have failed due to poor experimental design.

    The mathematics of wave harmonics as applied to the astrological approach to natural cosmic patterns has an elegant fit with the axiomatic framework of fractal geometry. Fractals are complex shapes which possess the property of self-similarity at different scales. Each part of a fractal system is similar to its surrounds, reflecting the causal influence of all parts of the whole. Complex natural systems such as trees, weather systems, galaxies, rivers, etc tend to follow fractal patterns. Their irregular features tend to share a common systemic character, mirroring the patterns of the whole according to the fractal principle of self-similarity. Using fractals as a model for the geometry of nature, the question here is whether time, as a regular natural structure, has fractal patterns. In locating each process within larger patterns which share a common character, astrology views the human mind and other chaotic systems of the earth as reflective microcosms in constant fractal relation to the rhythms of the solar system, freely inclined but not compelled to have a similar character at any given moment to that exhibited by the macrocosm. This approach supports the fractal maxim ‘as above so below’ by seeing our minds and the patterns of the seasons as simultaneous expressions of the structure of time. Human beings are like leaves on the tree of the sun.

    The inference can then be postulated that the sun signs are a middle level pattern within a larger galactic fractal structure. Just as the smaller branches of a tree reflect both the larger structure of its boughs and the smaller structures of its twigs and leaves, so the natural rhythm of the sun signs, defined by the seasons of the earth, should both reflect a larger whole and flow through to every sub-system. On this basis the causal theme ‘as above, so below’ should apply to the patterns of our galactic neighbourhood. Insofar as our galactic environment shares a common origin and is therefore a single system, fractal theory tells us that the natural cycles of the earth should exhibit harmonic resonance with galactic patterns at various levels.
    Like whorls in a cosmic whirlpool, the rhythm of the seasons should in some natural physical way reflect the fractal whirlpool energy of our spiral galaxy. This logic of fractal reflection provides a mathematical framework to consider the observations of astrology regarding a range of observed phenomena, including signs, aspects, transits, houses, progression and precession.

    Robert Tulip

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    I'm a Leo. How's my day going to go? I'll post at the end of they day and we'll see if you nailed it

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Serenitude View Post
    I'm a Leo. How's my day going to go? I'll post at the end of they day and we'll see if you nailed it
    are you a cat or a dog?


    24 July - 23 August
    LEO
    Extrovert and gregarious Leo pets need to be admired

    DOGS: King of the dogs, standing erect, the Leo dog is confident, fearless and proud. They make excellent police dogs and will fearlessly chase criminals, enter blazing buildings or sniff out bombs. Dogs praised for their bravery or pampered by royalty are more often than not born under the sign of Leo. Your Leo dog cannot bear to be ignored. Their vanity has no limit and they love to be the centre of attention. Leo dogs are fiercely loyal and would rather die protecting you than allow you to come to any harm. They make excellent guard dogs but may be scared of cats.
    CATS: Cats born under their natural feline sign of Leo are the most fortunate of creatures. They will experience good health and be extremely lucky- nine lives are just the start. They will be born into affluent homes. Most Leo cats will have long hair but the naturally long haired varieties, such as Persians, will be exceptionally beautiful- even show cats. Pampered Leos are likely to attract wealth so for them quality collars and baskets are the norm. They are extrovert and gregarious yet your Leo cat is not arrogant- she's loyal, steadfast and true.


    from http://www.psychics.co.uk/petastrology/


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    Quote Originally Posted by Serenitude View Post
    I'm a Leo. How's my day going to go? I'll post at the end of they day and we'll see if you nailed it
    Heh, I'm a human, how will I be evolving?

    I'll post after I do and let you know whether or not evolutionary theory's predictability worked out.


    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

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    Quote Originally Posted by A.DIM View Post
    Heh, I'm a human, how will I be evolving?

    I'll post after I do and let you know whether or not evolutionary theory's predictability worked out.


    AFAIK, evolution theories don't predict the results. :-P

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vermonter View Post
    AFAIK, evolution theories don't predict the results. :-P

    But isn't that what good science does, predict?

    Are you saying then, that evolution theories aren't good science?

    :P
    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

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    Robert Tulip: I apologize for sidetracking your thread, though what prompted me was the nonsensical assertion made by Serenitude about the predictability of astrology.
    I'll trust you're quite capable of explaining to him his misunderstandings.
    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

  20. #20
    I think that evolution theory can make predictions.

    for example the white butterfly species living in a land where people paint everything red will evolve into red butterflys. :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by A.DIM View Post
    But isn't that what good science does, predict?

    Are you saying then, that evolution theories aren't good science?

    :P
    You are just being purposely troublesome.

    I presume you know why biological evolution is a science.

    If not, you have some reading to do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    These are good questions which I believe can have clear answers....

    I postulate that any real effects of astrology do not rely on any force other than those already known to physics but can be explained mathematically through the operation of physical mechanisms which are complex instances of the force of gravity....

    The mathematics of wave harmonics as applied to the astrological approach to natural cosmic patterns has an elegant fit with the axiomatic framework of fractal geometry....
    Word salad does not answer Bignose's question.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    http://66.201.42.16/viewitem.php3?id...9&kbid=ionsikc summarises peer review of Gauquelin
    Do you have any material put together by an organization that is mainstream science and not woo?

    The org you link too has a clear mission, to slant everything in such a way that it comes out the way they want.

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    Evolution does predict that species undergo random mutations, and it is largely supported by observation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by A.DIM View Post
    But isn't that what good science does, predict?

    Are you saying then, that evolution theories aren't good science?

    :P
    Argos stated my thoughts precisely on this one.

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    Evolution explains after the fact; it is an historical theory if anything.

    But "predicting random mutations" strikes me as oxymoronic.



    Are random mutations acting in accordance with repeatable, testable, natural laws?
    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

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    Quote Originally Posted by aurora View Post
    You are just being purposely troublesome.

    I presume you know why biological evolution is a science.

    If not, you have some reading to do.
    Regardless of what I know, I always have reading to do.

    But I am being troublesome because calling evolution theory a "predictive" science is inaccurate and misleading; it explains only after the fact.

    One can predict absolutely nothing with evolution theory.
    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

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    Perhaps a new thread on this topic would be a good idea?

    Pete

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Tulip View Post
    With respect, this comment repeats the ill-informed view that the arbitrary constellations which happen to be behind each point on the zodiac are seen as having a causal relationship to astrological observations. This may have been the case 2000 years ago, but is no longer so. Astrology uses the tropical zodiac (based on earth's seasons) not the sidereal zodiac (based on constellations). Debunking such a straw man is as valid as debunking chemistry by talking about phlogiston.
    Tell that to, well, pretty much everyone I know. After all, astrology is still divided into star signs, no matter which version you're using. I know people who draw up horoscopes, and they still use stars and planets. You may not, but it's a kind of astrology of which I've never heard--and since I'm a Pagan, I've heard an awful lot about just about any kind of divination you care to name.

    Oh, and A.DIM, if astrology isn't predictive, which it isn't, what's the point of it? Evolution, regardless of whether it's predictive or not, tells us valuable things. Non-predictive astrology would tell us what, exactly? (And not all predictions need be of things yet to happen; evolution predicts things that we are yet to discover as well.)
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  30. #30
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
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    4,871
    Indeed.

    I should've simply resisted the urge to liken Serenitude's remark on predictive astrology to predicitive evolution theory.

    Again, my apologies.





    Edited to add: this was meant as response to Peter.
    Where the telescope ends, the microscope begins. Which of the two has the greater view?

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