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The Icelander
2002-Jul-10, 05:38 PM
I was reading an astrology website the other day, by one of the most popular astrologer in Iceland (argh), and he was talking about researches on astrology. I read that some French mathematician called Michel Gauquelin was said to have found relation between date of birth and profession.

He also mentioned a German mathematician, Gunther Sachs, that did many researches on astrology in Germany, Britain and Swiss between 1987 and 1994.

He doesn´t say anything else about this researches so I was wondering whether you know anything about it? Unfortunately, his website is not in english so you probably cannot read it, and I haven´t found anything about it on the Internet.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-11, 09:18 AM
I was born on the same date (not year) as Hitler. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_eek.gif

I can guarantee you that any statistical evidence for astrology is either bad science or bad interpretation of coincidences.

2002-Jul-11, 10:43 AM
Well? maybe you've started something..{maybe not}
as far as a debait between astrology and astronomy
maybe there isn't any? I don't know! My guess was THAT
astronomy was well in place years befor astronomy
{againi've no proofs of that concept}
[AND OF COURSE I've been wrong befor
My experiences in the past have been
I GOT better data about Where the MOON {for example}
would be [AND WHEN], in the future from Astrologers
than from astronomers. I have gotten some pretty bad[WRONG] numbers from astronomers .. like 4.5 for example and never any from Astrologers that i recall... believe what you want

Argos
2002-Jul-11, 01:08 PM
Newton was an astrologer. But that doesn't mean anything, as long as astrology seemed to be perfectly "scientific" those times.

Astrology was practiced because it seemed to be the best way to understand nature in those childhood days. As soon as better tools for understanding the universe appeared, like the scientific method, every sensible person discarded astrology and adopted its newly born scientific conterpart, the astronomy. Astrology was, since then, left to the believers who don't conform to the universe as it is, and who look for fantastic, supernatural explanations to simple things.

David Hall
2002-Jul-11, 01:28 PM
As I see it, in the beginning astronomy and astrology were interconnected. Astronomy was the study of the heavens and the movement of things in it. Astrology was the practical (at least it seemed so) application of astronomy to predict and understand the world around us.

The split between the two didn't really happen until the age of reason, when the scientific method began to seperate fact from speculation. Astrology was found to have very little support in science and was discarded, leaving only astronomy as a serious study.

Argos
2002-Jul-11, 01:36 PM
On 2002-07-11 05:18, beskeptical wrote:
I was born on the same date (not year) as Hitler. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_eek.gif


So, both are veritable Arians! /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif

nebularain
2002-Jul-11, 09:21 PM
On 2002-07-11 09:08, Argos wrote:
Astrology was practiced because it seemed to be the best way to understand nature in those childhood days. As soon as better tools for understanding the universe appeared, like the scientific method, every sensible person discarded astrology and adopted its newly born scientific conterpart, the astronomy. Astrology was, since then, left to the believers who don't conform to the universe as it is, and who look for fantastic, supernatural explanations to simple things.


Actually, as I understand it, astrology was an extension of the religious beliefs of the ancient peoples. That is, it wasn't about understanding nature but about spiritual pursuits. So, basically, astrology is now pretty much as it always was.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-11, 10:11 PM
On 2002-07-11 06:43, HUb' wrote:
Well? maybe you've started something..{maybe not}
as far as a debait between astrology and astronomy
maybe there isn't any? I don't know! ...
I have gotten some pretty bad[WRONG] numbers from astronomers .. like 4.5 for example and never any from Astrologers that i recall... believe what you want


Numbers from astrologers??????????

I mentioned in another post that medicine has only recently, (less than 100 years), focused on evidence and outcomes as the method that will bring the most positive results. Individuals have figured this out to some degree I presume since early in our development as 'technological' (Tim T.'s definition because it makes sense here) beings. But the road to everyone figuring it out in all aspects of life, the Universe, etc., is probably too far off to speculate.

A drought occurs, the high priests decides to sacrifice some poor victim, the drought goes away, voila, cause and effect. Not! But look at how many things in human thought processes are based on equivilent data.

In medicine, which I am most familiar with, I'd estimate it to be about 98%. You go to the Chiropractor, your back pain is better and, voila, cause and effect. You get infected with an upper respiratory virus, you take vitamin C, your symptoms abate and, voila, cause and effect. Not!

So the fact that astrology predates astronomy is hardly evidence that there is any merrit in the interpretations of the data. As I said, show me a study that provides evidence for astrology and I'll show you a flawed study.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-07-11 18:12 ]</font>

Matherly
2002-Jul-12, 04:33 PM
On 2002-07-11 18:11, beskeptical wrote:
As I said, show me a study that provides evidence for astrology and I'll show you a flawed study.


Isn't rather unscientific to dismiss a study as flawed before such a study as even been attempted? I'm not saying that astrology works, I'm just saying that it's somewhat arrogant to claim to be 'scientific' and yet still dismiss a potential hypothesis out of hand.

Hale_Bopp
2002-Jul-12, 04:48 PM
A few weeks ago, the Public Radio show "This American Life" featured kids who reached perfectly wrong conclusions from perfectly valid reasoning.

My favorite was the tooth fairy story. Woman was talking about her childhood when a friend told her, "I know who the tooth fairy is!"

Her friend said that she put a tooth under her pillow and in the middle of the night, woke up and her dad was taking the tooth and putting money there.

Therefore, the kids both reached the logical conclusion that her father was the tooth fairy! She was concinvcd that Mr. Roberson drove around town in his car every night performing his "tooth fairy" duities.

It got even better when she told her mom that he was the tooth fairy. Her mom said she was right and it was a big secret and she couldn't tell anybody.

So, the point is that sometimes the "evidence" can be grossly misinterpreted!

Rob

Argos
2002-Jul-12, 05:35 PM
On 2002-07-11 17:21, nebularain wrote:

Actually, as I understand it, astrology was an extension of the religious beliefs of the ancient peoples. That is, it wasn't about understanding nature but about spiritual pursuits. So, basically, astrology is now pretty much as it always was.



I agree partially. I put a very simplified reply on what I think about astrology. But As I see it, astrology, besides having a place in religious practices, always played a key role in man's attempts to control and understand nature.

Donnie B.
2002-Jul-12, 05:55 PM
On 2002-07-12 12:48, Hale_Bopp wrote:
Therefore, the kids both reached the logical conclusion that her father was the tooth fairy! She was concinvcd that Mr. Roberson drove around town in his car every night performing his "tooth fairy" duities.

It got even better when she told her mom that he was the tooth fairy. Her mom said she was right and it was a big secret and she couldn't tell anybody.

So, the point is that sometimes the "evidence" can be grossly misinterpreted!

Well, either that, or the Tooth Fairy has finally been positively identified!

samsara15
2002-Jul-12, 07:16 PM
I'd be interested to see if astrology fans could come up with any reason WHY the planets should affect our destiny. Let them Give the world a cause and effect relationhip that can be tested in some sort of objective manner, and then provide a theory as to why it ought to work, so the theory could be tested. I'd also be interested in seeing astrology fans making some predictions based on their theories and then providing some data. Of course, that will never happen unless scientific people can pin them down enough to make their ideas testable.

2002-Jul-12, 10:48 PM
<a name="20020712.2:39"> page 20020712.2:39 aka Hub
On 2002-07-11 09:28, David Hall wrote: To: HUb'
11 CHICCHAN 19 TZEC


The split between the two didn't really happen until the age of reason, when the scientific method began to seperate fact from speculation. Astrology was found to have very little support in science and was discarded, leaving only astronomy as a serious study.


I tink you've touched the debait Who lasts LAST
astronomer's current well funded or Astrologers ?
My guess ? it will be the latter as any would be lunar astronomers will take up Geology instead .. just to look good

2002-Jul-12, 10:59 PM
<a name="20020712.2:45"> page 20020712.2:45 aka ?
On 2002-07-12 15:16, samsara15 wrote: To: 11 CHICCHAN 19 TZEC
I'd be interested to see if astrology fans could come up with any reason WHY the planets should affect our destiny. Let them Give the world a cause and effect relationhip that can be tested in some sort of objective manner, and then provide a theory as to why it ought to work, so the theory could be tested. I'd also be interested in seeing astrology fans making some predictions based on their theories and then providing some data. Of course, that will never happen unless scientific people can pin them down enough to make their ideas testable.
[/quote]
hmm? do the planets ..? 4myself Astronomically speaking it makes secnde to me
that at some time in the not to distant past {this orbit around the Galaxy}
that there was a solid planet in the orbit now occuppied by the
astroids .. 2] that it was obliterated some way 3] that the astroids ARE
remnants of the obliteratio [however it occured] and that the Fade
[ the rate of vanishment of the debris an astronomical number {not very long} one or to Gal.orbs max. To bad i don't have a clue as to that rate of "FADE".

xriso
2002-Jul-13, 12:57 AM
On 2002-07-12 15:16, samsara15 wrote:
I'd be interested to see if astrology fans could come up with any reason WHY the planets should affect our destiny. Let them Give the world a cause and effect relationhip that can be tested in some sort of objective manner, and then provide a theory as to why it ought to work, so the theory could be tested. I'd also be interested in seeing astrology fans making some predictions based on their theories and then providing some data. Of course, that will never happen unless scientific people can pin them down enough to make their ideas testable.


I've heard some say that it's because of "gravity", but I don't buy it (the tidal effects from even Jupiter aren't exactly significant). As for horoscopes, the only influence they can really claim is the current position of earth w/resp to the sun. There are things that are different throughout the year: how close Earth is to apogee, current season, etc. However, I don't see why these things would influence a baby's personality in such a definite way.

IMNSHO, there are just too many factors that get in the way of the astrologer making non-obvious yet true predictions.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-13, 03:49 AM
On 2002-07-12 12:33, Matherly wrote:


On 2002-07-11 18:11, beskeptical wrote:
As I said, show me a study that provides evidence for astrology and I'll show you a flawed study.


Isn't rather unscientific to dismiss a study as flawed before such a study as even been attempted? I'm not saying that astrology works, I'm just saying that it's somewhat arrogant to claim to be 'scientific' and yet still dismiss a potential hypothesis out of hand.



Like assuming the studies haven't been done?

beskeptical
2002-Jul-14, 06:49 AM
On 2002-07-12 23:49, beskeptical wrote:


On 2002-07-12 12:33, Matherly wrote:


On 2002-07-11 18:11, beskeptical wrote:
As I said, show me a study that provides evidence for astrology and I'll show you a flawed study.


Isn't rather unscientific to dismiss a study as flawed before such a study as even been attempted? I'm not saying that astrology works, I'm just saying that it's somewhat arrogant to claim to be 'scientific' and yet still dismiss a potential hypothesis out of hand.



Like assuming the studies haven't been done?


For example, the summary in the Skeptics' Dictionary, http://skepdic.com/astrolgy.html,
summarizes the scientific status of astrology with references.

Matherly
2002-Jul-14, 11:44 PM
On 2002-07-12 15:16, samsara15 wrote:
I'd be interested to see if astrology fans could come up with any reason WHY the planets should affect our destiny.


Well, I'm not an astronomy fan, but the answer is "As is Above, so Below" (credited to Hermes Trimagerus (sp?))

The logic is that the universe is an infinitely repeating pattern, from the macro down to the micro. Additionally, this includes the assumption of pre-destination (the patterns will never get out of synch, by natural or human intervention)

Now then, here is my proposed experiement. If you could repeatedly and accuratly predict the location of gas molocules in an enclosed area based on correlated data gathered by the view of the stars and other astonomical objects as viewed from the building that housed the enclosure, then data would support the "Universal Recursion" theory.

Matherly
2002-Jul-14, 11:52 PM
On 2002-07-12 23:49, beskeptical wrote:
Like assuming the studies haven't been done?


So every study on astrology that will ever be done has already been performed and no more will ever come forth? Wow, didn't know science came to a screeching halt like that!

It defeats the cause to make absolute statements like the one you did. If you want to say "All of the studies I have reviewed on the subject of astology have been full of <reference deleted because beskeptical is far too polite to use words like Matherly does>", then great. But to say that any study you read that supports a hypothesis you don't like must contain a flaw is not sceintifically sound.

Peter B
2002-Jul-15, 12:40 AM
The Icelander asked for some info relating to Michel Gauquelin and his studies.

The best place to go would probably be the American Skeptics web site, but I can give a little background info.

MG produced a study called the "Mars Effect". His study suggested that Mars was in a particular part of the sky when a disproportionately high number of sporting champions were born.

However, the study's legitimacy was challenged on the basis that MG chose who should be in the study. In other words, he worked with a biased sample.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-15, 03:51 AM
On 2002-07-14 19:52, Matherly wrote:



On 2002-07-12 23:49, beskeptical wrote:
Like assuming the studies haven't been done?


If you want to say "All of the studies I have reviewed on the subject of astology have been full of <reference deleted because beskeptical is far too polite to use words like Matherly does>", then great. But to say that any study you read that supports a hypothesis you don't like must contain a flaw is not sceintifically sound.


I referred to one hypothesis. Why would that lead you to think I would have a similar statement for "any hypothesis I don't like"?

I made a statement which concluded, based on sufficient data having been collected, that astrology was not going to be confirmed by any future studies. How does that equate to my likes and dislikes?


So every study on astrology that will ever be done has already been performed and no more will ever come forth? Wow, didn't know science came to a screeching halt like that!

Lots of studies may come forth, but more than sufficient studies have been done to conclude there is no connection between the objects in the Universe not on Earth and peoples' personalities or events on Earth.

At what point are you going to conclude the Earth is not flat? If someone said they had read a 'paper' that had a good arguement the Earth was really flat would you assume the 'paper' was flawed or would you assume you would not be able to say until you read it?

One can take the philosophical position that a study might be presented in the future that provides a good arguement the Earth is flat, but how realistic is that? Some people may choose to stay that open to potential new research.

Others may choose to be close minded to anything new, such as those who may have held on to the view that the Earth was flat well past overwhelming evidence it wasn't.

Most people fall into the middle of this continuum. I have no qualms stating that astrology cannot predict events nor personalities. The Earth is round. Infectious diseases are caused by microbes, not curses. Zeus is not above us throwing lightning bolts at the Earth, and so on.

That in no way makes me the least bit closed minded to new discoveries.


It defeats the cause to make absolute statements like the one you did.

How can science be of use to us if we are never convinced there is enough data to draw a final conclusion. That does not mean new discoveries won't occur that radically change theories. Plate tectonics is an example of a shift in our concept of the Earth's crust. I see no benefit nor logic in concluding that there will be no further research that might change our current theory on plate movement. I think there is certainty that new research will continue to make discoveries that disprove current theories we believe have been sufficiently tested.

But astrology is not going to turn out to have any validity any more than someone is going to discover the Earth is flat. There is sufficient evidence to that fact. It has nothing to do with 'all the studies I have reviewed'.

Kizarvexis
2002-Jul-15, 03:52 AM
Here, try this exercise.

http://www.noao.edu/education/peppercorn/pcmain.html

After doing the walk and seeing how small the planets are in relation to how far they are apart (everything is to scale), astrology seems silly.

Kizarvexis

2002-Jul-15, 10:51 AM
<a name="20020715.2:41"> page 20020715.2:41 aka My Guess
On 2002-07-11 17:21, nebularain wrote: To? HUb'

On 2002-07-11 09:08, Argos wrote:
Astrology was practiced because it seemed to be the best way to understand nature in those childhood days. As soon as better tools for understanding the universe appeared, like the scientific method, every sensible person discarded astrology and adopted its newly born scientific conterpart, the astronomy. Astrology was, since then, left to the believers who don't conform to the universe as it is, and who look for fantastic, supernatural explanations to simple things.
HUb' 2:43 A.M.There were two main though processes
one the POSITIVISTS {ei the moons 4.5 Billion Years Old}
Actually, as I understand it, astrology was an extension of the religious beliefs of the ancient peoples. That is, it wasn't about understanding nature but about spiritual pursuits. So, basically, astrology is now pretty much as it always was.
HUb' 2:44 A.M. the other {realitivists} when the Sun was in Aquarius & the Moon was
rising {etc etc} I was born. [Not based upon a single fact.. but several} Double Standard?

2002-Jul-15, 10:55 AM
<a name="20020715.2:48"> page 20020715.2:47 aka Correct time?
On 2002-07-12 12:33, Matherly wrote:


On 2002-07-11 18:11, beskeptical wrote:
As I said, show me a study that provides evidence for astrology and I'll show you a flawed study.


Isn't rather unscientific to dismiss a study as flawed before such a study as even been attempted? I'm not saying that astrology works, I'm just saying that it's somewhat arrogant to claim to be 'scientific' and yet still dismiss a potential hypothesis out of hand.
{x} second: Show me someone who speaks in Absolutes
and i'll show you someone whos computer clock drifts

2002-Jul-15, 11:07 AM
<a name="20020715.2:54"> page 20020715.2:54 aka Level 3 density
Usually when i say density 3 i mean 3 post to forum not 3 to topic?
4your (http://www.4yourhoroscope.com/)
Facade (http://www.Facade.COM/)
capitolinks (http://www.capitalinks.com)
mindspri (http://www.mindspring.com/~present/astrology/astro.htm)
rockie (http://www.rockiehoroscope.com/)
artwells (http://www.artwells.com/newwings/)
maybe this will help & maybe not? Lines left so;
bact to Positivism [July 15, 2002]
vs realtivism 1 LAMAT 2 XUL
or Single {Go_Mint} Std vs As_Trol-O-G.y
yes AS.Strong.as.ME:

beskeptical
2002-Jul-15, 11:09 PM
On 2002-07-15 06:55, HUb' wrote:

{x} second: Show me someone who speaks in Absolutes
and i'll show you someone whos computer clock drifts


The Earth is absolutely not flat. Chocolate absolutely tastes good to me. It is absolutely beautiful outside here today in Seattle.

#1 is factual
#2 is my opinion which is factual unless I'm lying.
#3 is a figure of speech.

I'm sure my computer clock drifts, I don't think the PC technology is accurate to nanoseconds yet.

My original statement was, "I can guarantee you that any statistical evidence for astrology is either bad science or bad interpretation of coincidences".

I think it is critical for the human race to get past the social-cultural phase we have been in since earliest recorded history. That is to quit buying into potential cause and effect beliefs that originated without scientific evidence.

We are not educating our society in how to recognize bad logic. The consequences are huge: trillions of dollars wasted worldwide on junk medicine and junk science, wars fought over stupidity such as blaming a culture or society for one's problems when the society is not the root cause. Killing still goes on to this day of individuals whom some group has decided is responsible for an infectious disease outbreak or a drought.

Sorry about overdramatizing here but I need to in order to show the bigger picture involved. And the reason I am comparing this situation to the flat Earth belief is to try to show that we all draw the line somewhere.

I'm sorry folks, but astrology has been discredited beyond a shadow of a doubt and no amount of future research is going to change that. Don't confuse this statement with assumptions about how I view research. It is a statement about astrology, not about science nor research.

nebularain
2002-Jul-16, 08:25 PM
Who needs some great study to show that astrology does not work? All you have to do is read the personality profile for your "sign" and figure "No, that doesn't describe me very well," or "No, I've seen better descriptions of me." Then you can read your "horoscope for the day" for a month and calculate how many times what it said actually applied to what happened to your day and see that it doesn't hold true very well.
/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_razz.gif

informant
2002-Jul-16, 08:41 PM
The trouble is that astrology is carefully worded, so that it can fit many people, and many days.
Does that make it "right"? Am I right if I say that "Either it will rain tomorrow, or there will be sunlight, or it will be cloudy"? Certainly!
Does my prediction have any kind of practical usefulness? Certainly not.
Vagueness is a flaw, not a virtue.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-16, 10:03 PM
On 2002-07-15 19:09, beskeptical wrote:
We are not educating our society in how to recognize bad logic. The consequences are huge: trillions of dollars wasted worldwide on junk medicine and junk science, wars fought over stupidity such as blaming a culture or society for one's problems when the society is not the root cause. Killing still goes on to this day of individuals whom some group has decided is responsible for an infectious disease outbreak or a drought.

Years ago, the American Association of Pediatrics recommended that babies sleep on their stomachs, to avoid aspiration of sputum. Now, the AAP Back To Sleep campaign recommends sleeping on the back--and they credit the campaign with saving thousands of infant lives every year who would otherwise have died of SIDS. Apparently, the first recommendation was killing thousands of infants per year.

But, it was science, no doubt about it. And not junk science, either. My wife and I felt uneasy about the original recommendation, and raised our children without following the original recommendation. Were we following junk science then?


Sorry about overdramatizing here but I need to in order to show the bigger picture involved. And the reason I am comparing this situation to the flat Earth belief is to try to show that we all draw the line somewhere.

Some of us try to avoid drawing the line.


I'm sorry folks, but astrology has been discredited beyond a shadow of a doubt and no amount of future research is going to change that. Don't confuse this statement with assumptions about how I view research. It is a statement about astrology, not about science nor research.


I disagree. Science has many charlatans, but that doesn't discredit science. Astrology may yet be found to have had some sort of logical basis. My own theory is that the seasons of Ptolemy were much more uniform, and things like Seasonal Affective Disorder had a much more predictable influence upon pregnancies and childbirth and child development. Premature childbirth was usually fatal also, so development in the ueterus was generally correlated with time of birth. Our common notion of personalities associated with Sun signs could well have been grounded in solid observational science. We just didn't understand the mechanism.

The irony might be, that unless we give credit to our ancestors, we will never discover the mechanism--and if we don't discover the mechanism, the nonsense will continue.

ljbrs
2002-Jul-17, 02:18 AM
Heck, the *Sun signs* -- the true Zodiac constellations -- are way off from the *Sun signs* which the astrologers use. Celestial positions have changed in the past 2000 years because of the precession of the equinoxes. Astrologers are still using the ancient ones as if they had some magic today.

According to the Cambridge Guide to the Constellations, the ACTUAL *Sun Signs* are:

Pisces - March 12 thru April 18;
Aries - April 19 thru May 13;
Taurus - May 14 thru June 19;
Gemini - June 20 thru July 20;
Cancer - July 21 thru August 9;
Leo - August 10 thru September 15;
Virgo - September 16 thru October 30;
Libra - October 31 thru November 22;
Scorpius - November 23 thru November 29;
Ophiuchus - November 30 thru December 17;
Sagittarius - December 18 thru January 18;
Capricornus - January 19 thru February 15;
and Aquarius - February 16 thru March 11.

The preceding (useful) information was taken from *Cambridge Guide to the Constellations* (by Michael E. Bakich) which has a lot of interesting information concerning the constellations besides the fact that Astrology is 2000 years behind in their silly and meaningless Sun signs.

I have some wonderful (best) friends whose two offspring are both Ophiuchans, which makes for a great *conversation piece* when some unsuspecting person, making small talk (at a coctail party or some such event), innocently inquires about their *sign(s)*.

Then again, astrologers are bound to have some kind of answer to counteract the revised information.

ljbrs /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif

nebularain
2002-Jul-17, 02:49 AM
On 2002-07-16 22:18, ljbrs wrote:

Scorpius - November 23 thru November 29;
Ophiuchus - November 30 thru December 17;


Hmmm...the hidden 13. I guess Ophiuchus is another constellation? (I had not heard of it before.) I wonder why the time frame here was split into two 'signs.' Was that explained at all in the info you have?
(Just being curious about the info.)

David Hall
2002-Jul-17, 03:39 AM
On 2002-07-16 22:18, ljbrs wrote:

According to the Cambridge Guide to the Constellations, the ACTUAL *Sun Signs* are:


To come to the defence of astrologers here, I should point out that what we consider the boundries of the constellations was only firmly decided less than a century ago. I'm sure astrologers use a different system that only approximates the actual boundries of the constellations. For one thing, they are divided into 12 equal zones, so they can't be that exact.

Now let's assume that there's some true effect to astrology. Perhaps it isn't due to the exact position of the planets compared to the stars itself, but to some higher source that was reflected in their positions when the first astrological relationships were made. In this case, even if the positions change due to precession, the original charts remain accurate. I suppose then that you could "adjust" everything to compensate for drift, but as long as it works, why bother?

Another thing to realize is that most astrologers themselves would agree that the little horoscope blurbs you get in the papers aren't worth a darn. They would argue that you need to have an individual, detailed reading done to get the full details of your own influences. From what I've read on astrology, these little influences add up.

I've found one interesting site that calculates out all the relationships for you and gives you more detailed readings. I find it rather entertaining: http://www.astro.com . You can get a detailed analysis of your personality and all of your star-charts laid out with the planets and their relationshps fully explained.

I've also read that astrological influences, like genetic ones, only give you a predillection for certain behaviors. Other outside influences can alter your character far outside the simple box a horoscope can paint.

Now, as to my personal opinion, I can't see how astrology works, so I really don't believe in it much. Especially not the fortune-telling aspects of it. But I have read several detailed descriptions of my personality and found them to be surprisingly accurate. I estimate about 80% of what I've read on my sign (Cancer) resembles me. But when I look at other signs I don't get nearly as high a match, and I have made an attempt to look at it objectively. Much the same seems to be true for those of other people I know too. So I sometimes wonder if the personality-predicting aspect of it might not have some basis to it. I think this area could still use a bit of research.

I wonder about the Chinese form of astrology as well. It doesn't seem to work on planetary positions, just when you were born, but I don't really know much about it. I know there are some astrologers who have tried to meld the two forms together and I wonder how those work out.

Well, anyway, this is getting too long. I sometimes wonder about it, but I certainly don't take much stock in it. Astrology is good for it's entertainment value, but I'm afraid it's scientific value remains to be seen.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-17, 08:32 AM
On 2002-07-16 18:03, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-15 19:09, beskeptical wrote:
We are not educating our society in how to recognize bad logic. The consequences are huge: trillions of dollars wasted worldwide on junk medicine and junk science, wars fought over stupidity such as blaming a culture or society for one's problems when the society is not the root cause. Killing still goes on to this day of individuals whom some group has decided is responsible for an infectious disease outbreak or a drought.

Years ago, the American Association of Pediatrics recommended that babies sleep on their stomachs, to avoid aspiration of sputum. Now, the AAP Back To Sleep campaign recommends sleeping on the back--and they credit the campaign with saving thousands of infant lives every year who would otherwise have died of SIDS. Apparently, the first recommendation was killing thousands of infants per year.

But, it was science, no doubt about it. And not junk science, either. My wife and I felt uneasy about the original recommendation, and raised our children without following the original recommendation. Were we following junk science then?

No and you are arguing straw men. Recognizing junk science has nothing to do with revisions of previous conclusions, errors, falsified data, and things of this nature.

The most common junk science we do not teach people about is attributing cause and effect to coincidences. If you wear your hat backwards to the ball game and your team wins do you start believing in backwards hats? So if you do it 5 games in a row and your team wins those 5 games, that proves it, right? Some people might believe so. But a very large percentage of the world's population, (including in 'western nations'), will truely believe in many things that have an equivilent amount of data and not recognize the difference.

Did you get over your cold when you took vitamin C? People will swear to it, you can't convince them otherwise. Maybe you're one of them. The original research concluding the benefits of vitamin C for respiratory infections was never repeatable. It was attempted by many researchers. The outcomes showed over and over there was no relationship between vitamin C and prevention nor more rapid improvement of colds.

If I listed all the treatments and cures that I know about that have no supporting research providing evidence of any more than placebo effect, (if even that much), and, in some cases had lots of research showing no benefit or even harm, I'd get thousands of posters arguing that this one or that one works, they're sure of it.

That doesn't mean viamin C has no benefits, just that it doesn't have any effect on colds. And, it doesn't have anything to do with western vs. alternative medicine. It has to do with understanding the difference between coincidences and true cause and effect. That includes understanding the importance of sample size, matched controls and controlling for other variables.



Beskeptical: And the reason I am comparing this situation to the flat Earth belief is to try to show that we all draw the line somewhere.

G o W: Some of us try to avoid drawing the line.

You are leaving you're options open that the world might be flat? /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_confused.gif



Beskeptical: I'm sorry folks, but astrology has been discredited beyond a shadow of a doubt and no amount of future research is going to change that. Don't confuse this statement with assumptions about how I view research. It is a statement about astrology, not about science nor research.


G o W: I disagree. Science has many charlatans, but that doesn't discredit science. Astrology may yet be found to have had some sort of logical basis.

Science has a minority of charlatans but even if there were a majority of bad guys that wouldn't discredit the scientific method. Astrology has a mix of charlatans and well meaning but misinformed believers, but it does not stand alone on its methods nor on the evidence.


G o W: My own theory is that the seasons of Ptolemy were much more uniform, and things like Seasonal Affective Disorder had a much more predictable influence upon pregnancies and childbirth and child development. Premature childbirth was usually fatal also, so development in the ueterus was generally correlated with time of birth. Our common notion of personalities associated with Sun signs could well have been grounded in solid observational science. We just didn't understand the mechanism.

The irony might be, that unless we give credit to our ancestors, we will never discover the mechanism--and if we don't discover the mechanism, the nonsense will continue.


How astrology developed is a different issue than whether or not it has validity.

Historians and archeologists have proposed many possible explanations for the development of social-cultural practices. Celestial objects played a large role in most early cultural beliefs. That doesn't mean sacrificing a virgin to the rain god every year before monsoon season was a valid practice.

What evidence do you have that seasonal affective disorder played any role in pregnancy outcome? Infectious disease would have had such an enormous impact on pregnancy outcome and life expectancy that SAD would have been negligible.

Research has failed to validate any association of personality with birth date or time. Why would you conclude our ancestors might have had good observational science to the contrary?

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-17, 02:01 PM
On 2002-07-17 04:32, beskeptical wrote:
No and you are arguing straw men. Recognizing junk science has nothing to do with revisions of previous conclusions, errors, falsified data, and things of this nature.

No need to be nasty--I'm not even sure why you think it is a straw man.

OTOH, I'd definitely say that falsified data is junk science.


What evidence do you have that seasonal affective disorder played any role in pregnancy outcome?

Do you agree that the health of the mother during pregnancy affects the health of the baby? Seems relatively common knowledge.


Infectious disease would have had such an enormous impact on pregnancy outcome and life expectancy that SAD would have been negligible.

Now that's a straw man--I wasn't talking about life expectancy nor pregnancy outcome. That's what makes it a straw man.

2002-Jul-17, 02:40 PM
<a name="20020717.6:2"> page 20020717.6:2 aka "Argument & Persuasion
On 2002-07-15 19:09, beskeptical wrote: To: HUb'


On 2002-07-15 06:55, HUb' wrote: Also:
Ok?
1: really? not mutch into A&P's
2: However i'll single out Skeptic 4this
3: {No! I think .. Believe whatever you like}
4: and as far as Pre SUADing some one
5: to give UP their Positive Plate Phospher
6: for the other system forget this
7: but my Arg will be poisted belo line 9
8: and it just means {yep} Jupitor Con Merc
9: get some space to no mater the critic.Sk

Rockie Horoscope -- AQUARIUS
with the rare conjunction of
Jupiter, Mercury and the care-giving Cancer sun

Ok1: I choise Rockie from the list above in the thread
its Quick and Easy and generates the Words
and phrases I attach to[clip out] ect.
in this case Jupiter, Mercury; and their "conjunction"
Ok2: it does interest my if the condition
{for me}[an Aquarian] Well actually an Ox/Aquarian
and if theres room a Wind_Bird/Ox/Aquarian/Wind.Bird/?
but i'd rather not get deep into Astrology and leave it at Ox/Aquarian? Was it Fir?Ox ? Water? oh never mind back to As.Strong.As.Me {the Smell}

aurorae
2002-Jul-17, 05:41 PM
Here's how my fifth graders were able to determine for themselves that astrology is pure hokum.

http://www.astrosociety.org/education/astro/act3/astrology.html

Too bad some older folks are more easily swayed by con artists than 5th graders.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-17, 09:03 PM
On 2002-07-17 10:01, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-17 04:32, beskeptical wrote:
No and you are arguing straw men. Recognizing junk science has nothing to do with revisions of previous conclusions, errors, falsified data, and things of this nature.

No need to be nasty--I'm not even sure why you think it is a straw man.

OTOH, I'd definitely say that falsified data is junk science.

I'm not trying to be nasty. Sorry if it sounded that way.

We do have a miscommunication about the term 'junk science'. Another term for what I mean by it is pseudo science. It's one thing to be wrong or deceitful with scientific research. It's another to use non scientific method or means and then believe the results to be equivilent to results obtained by scientific research.

It is a straw man argument to use an example of an advance in medical knowledge as an arguement that a previous recommendation might have equated to junk science.

Now, if you wanted to say doing hysterectomies for hysterical women was junk science, then I'd agree. I think the vast majority of medicine before 1900 was based on junk science.



Do you agree that the health of the mother during pregnancy affects the health of the baby? Seems relatively common knowledge.

SAD would not have affected infant health nor pregnancy outcomes in any measurable way a few hundred years or more ago. I doubt it has any measurable significance today. It might affect a very small number of births. But it wouldn't affect enough births to show up as predictable personality or pregnancy outcome trends.



Now that's a straw man--I wasn't talking about life expectancy nor pregnancy outcome. That's what makes it a straw man.


You lost me on this answer. Weren't you saying that pregnancy outcome might be related to seasons so astrology might have had a basis in fact?

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-18, 10:24 AM
On 2002-07-17 17:03, beskeptical wrote:
We do have a miscommunication about the term 'junk science'. Another term for what I mean by it is pseudo science. It's one thing to be wrong or deceitful with scientific research. It's another to use non scientific method or means and then believe the results to be equivilent to results obtained by scientific research.

It is a straw man argument to use an example of an advance in medical knowledge as an arguement that a previous recommendation might have equated to junk science.

Now, if you wanted to say doing hysterectomies for hysterical women was junk science, then I'd agree. I think the vast majority of medicine before 1900 was based on junk science.

That's one of the differences between the "hard" sciences and the "soft" sciences. I'd put the dividing line between junk medicine and modern medicine more around 1970--and I still see junk in the pages of JAMA.

It's just not as easy to do textbook science in some disciplines as it is to do in physics or chemistry. But the medical breakthroughs of the past few hundred years have been tremendous.


SAD would not have affected infant health nor pregnancy outcomes in any measurable way a few hundred years or more ago. I doubt it has any measurable significance today. It might affect a very small number of births. But it wouldn't affect enough births to show up as predictable personality or pregnancy outcome trends.

Well, remember, 2000 years ago, there might have been (and probably were) a lot stronger seasonal affects. I'd imagine the normal diet had large flucuations in vitamin, nutrition, and caloric content, from season to season. That would probably have been true a hundred years ago.


You lost me on this answer. Weren't you saying that pregnancy outcome might be related to seasons so astrology might have had a basis in fact?


No, I was saying that personality and physique of the child might have been related to the nutrition/stress of the womb--well, actually, I was just extrapoling what we already know is true.

2002-Jul-18, 10:48 AM
<a name="20020718.2:35"> page 20020718.2:35 aka "Fifth" Grader
On 2002-07-17 13:41, aurorae wrote: To: 4 CHUEN 5 XUL
He astrology is pure hokum. {maybe} heres My prediction: based on L not N
there WAS an X {Yes?} well maybe abou 9z7/18?
and IF its AIM was correct {I doubt this line of reasoning}
then the "Earth Responce Quake" :"WILL": occure
at about 11 Z on the 20th of July give or take 2 hrs
the problem I can see with my :"WILL": was
that the X i refer to above probably was Sun Spot #30
in the northern hemisphere + not on aproaching edge! Now if it was #36 look the F up in Funk & Wag`Yall

beskeptical
2002-Jul-18, 11:07 AM
On 2002-07-18 06:24, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-17 17:03, beskeptical wrote:
We do have a miscommunication about the term 'junk science'. Another term for what I mean by it is pseudo science.
Now, if you wanted to say doing hysterectomies for hysterical women was junk science, then I'd agree. I think the vast majority of medicine before 1900 was based on junk science.

That's one of the differences between the "hard" sciences and the "soft" sciences. I'd put the dividing line between junk medicine and modern medicine more around 1970--and I still see junk in the pages of JAMA.

I actually agree to some extent here. I wouldn't put the dividing line at 1970 though. There are some carryovers from junk science days, things that have been done for years but were never properly tested.

'Evidence based medicine' has been the guiding theme now for quite some time.


Beskeptical: SAD would not have affected infant health nor pregnancy outcomes in any measurable way ...


G o W: Well, remember, 2000 years ago, there might have been (and probably were) a lot stronger seasonal affects. I'd imagine the normal diet had large flucuations in vitamin, nutrition, and caloric content, from season to season. That would probably have been true a hundred years ago.

Infectious disease had the biggest impact besides war and famine until the 1940s. Viruses and bacteria and a few other organisms killed people. And people killed people. Malnutrition might have had an impact in many locations, but the whole world was not malnourished. The human body can tolerate seasonal fluctuations in diet and sunlight.


Beskeptical: You lost me on this answer. Weren't you saying that pregnancy outcome might be related to seasons so astrology might have had a basis in fact?



G o W: No, I was saying that personality and physique of the child might have been related to the nutrition/stress of the womb--well, actually, I was just extrapoling what we already know is true.


I'd give genetics the major role in personality. Nutrition and stress might have little impact unless you cross a threshhold into malnutrition, folic acid deficiency, really severe stress etc. Like I said before, the human body has the ability to tolerate a lot before damage occurs.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-18, 11:13 AM
On 2002-07-18 07:07, beskeptical wrote:
I'd give genetics the major role in personality.

On personality? What study is that based on? /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

David Hall
2002-Jul-18, 12:36 PM
On 2002-07-18 07:07, beskeptical wrote:

I'd give genetics the major role in personality.

Nah. In my (admittedly unexpert) opinion, I'd say your early environment does the most to shape your personality. Genetics is a part of it, but it only give general influences. What you become mostly depends on what you experienced early in life.

My guess is the major factors in growth of personality are things like birth order, family environment, early education, the personalities and actions of your parents/guardians, the presence or absence of any role models/mentors, and the presence or absence of any traumatic experiences. Most of this probably occurs before adolesence, but some things, like politial leanings and the more cerebral aspects of thinking probably develop during your teenage years.

I can see this in my own development. I'd say my basic character was molded mostly by the influences of parents and grandparents, with some coming from my friends and my experiences during grade school. I can remember certain feelings and attitudes coming to the forefront of my personality as far back as first grade. My basic beliefs about life however mostly seem to come from my junior and senior high school period, and a little from university. A very large part of it came directly from the SF and new-age literature I was introduced to in that time.

Did genetics play a part in that? Almost certainly. But I'm also certain that if my early childhood had been different in any way, I would be a much different person than I am today.

No, wait. I take it all back. My personality was in fact completely fixed by the positions of the sun and planets at the date of my birth. None of the stuff I mentioned above is important at all. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_razz.gif

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-18, 06:47 PM
Yes, and isn't one of the major concerns about hearing problems in infants is that if they can't hear, they not only don't acquire enough language skills, but their brain development is slowed also? I don't think genetics plays any part in that at all.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-19, 01:25 AM
Genetics is turning out to play the largest role, environment still has a great impact. I'll get back to you with some research.

On an anecdotal note, (which I am not presenting as evidence), if you ask any experienced newborn nursery nurse if babies are born with distinctly different personalities you will get a yes answer 100% of the time. I myself have had such experience and know it to be universal.

G o W, it dawned on me after I logged off that we are still out of communication synch. Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are saying there is a possible connection between personality and birth date, not due to influence by celestial objects, but rather due to other influences like time of year.

If that is the case, I don't think that hypothesis would pan out but I wouldn't write that one off. I believe more than enough personality studies have been done to refute such an hypothesis, but I could not claim to know that without a little research.

However, I do not equate such an hypothesis with astrology. Astrology argues that a celestial object has an influence on a person at the time of their birth. It isn't even logical that upon exiting the birth canal, a person would be influenced at that exact time, and that time only, in some permanent way, by anything other than the immediate environment.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-19, 01:55 AM
On 2002-07-18 14:47, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Yes, and isn't one of the major concerns about hearing problems in infants is that if they can't hear, they not only don't acquire enough language skills, but their brain development is slowed also? I don't think genetics plays any part in that at all.


Slowed is an incorrect description of what occurs. Development occurs throughout one's lifespan. Research has shown there are critical times in development for certain things like acquiring verbal skills. A blind child may not have a well developed visual area of the brain. Both may however, compensate for their deficiency with greater abilities in another area.

We are not talking black and white here, genetics and environment both play big roles in human development. Research has gone both ways, probably depending on how the question is asked. But recent advances in genetic research reveal DNA plays a much bigger role in personality than previously believed. That doesn't make us predestined to be worker ants or queen bees, but genes do make us who we are.

Of course, being deaf may well have been genetic so in that case genetics would have a big impact.

Even if deafness were acquired through injury, it would not be accurate to take extreme examples and extrapolate the percentage genetics vs environment plays in human development.

If a child suffers brain damage which affects his/her personality, or a child is born with an IQ of 200 and would do well regardless of environment, these would not be kids you would base a study of genetics vs environment on.

The best research on genetics vs environment would be done on identical twins raised apart, with fraternal twins raised apart as controls. Second after that would be comparing identical twins to fraternal twins with similar aged siblings as controls. With the latter group you would need a larger sample size to rule out other variables.

A good example of past junk science in this area was blaming maternal child relationships for autism and homosexuality.

ljbrs
2002-Jul-19, 01:57 AM
nebularin:


Hmmm...the hidden 13. I guess Ophiuchus is another constellation? (I had not heard of it before.) I wonder why the time frame here was split into two 'signs.' Was that explained at all in the info you have?
(Just being curious about the info.)

There was no explanation per se. It just listed the dates when the actual constellations were *Sun Signs* and crossed the ecliptic. Ophiuchus is one of many constellations which now (2000 years after the astrologers made all of this up) happens to cross the ecliptic. Of course, sun signs are purely silly, but they change because of the wobble occurring with the precession of the equinoxes which occurs regularly. Polaris was not the pole star at the time astrologers made the list of Sun signs.

For other reasons, astrology is a farce (as far as predicting anything about anybody's life.

I would think that the important determining event that actually occurs would be the time of conception where the genetic codes of two individual human beings combine to determine most of the later events (if the zygote lives to become a human being, which often is not the case).

*The Cambridge Guide to the Constellations* by Michael E. Bakich is a book about observational astronomy and about the constellations (both hemispheres). It was nice of the editors to include that little piece about the actual position of the Zodiac in today's sky as seen from Earth. Now, Astrology is simply a lot of silliness which is believed by many people. The positions of the Zodiacal constellations have nothing to do with anything about anybody's life. Regardless of which famous physicists or astronomers of the distant past believed in astrology, astrology is not a valid determiner of a person's present or future. Scientifically, astrology is meaningless.

ljbrs /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif

_________________
*Nothing is more damaging to a new truth than an old error.* Goethe

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: ljbrs on 2002-07-18 22:06 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: ljbrs on 2002-07-18 22:09 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: ljbrs on 2002-07-18 22:11 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-19, 04:49 AM
On 2002-07-18 21:25, beskeptical wrote:
G o W, it dawned on me after I logged off that we are still out of communication synch. Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are saying there is a possible connection between personality and birth date, not due to influence by celestial objects, but rather due to other influences like time of year.

No, not necessarily. In fact, almost definitely not. Birth date and prenatal time frames are no longer as well correlated for one thing--and different countries experience different climates at different times. I'm saying that it could have been a valid observation 2000 years ago.


If that is the case, I don't think that hypothesis would pan out but I wouldn't write that one off. I believe more than enough personality studies have been done to refute such an hypothesis, but I could not claim to know that without a little research.

Even Ptolemy considered that the best basetime to use for astrology was conception time--but that has been, until recently, hard to determine accurately. They used birth date as a proxy, which, until recently, was fairly well correlated with conception time.


However, I do not equate such an hypothesis with astrology. Astrology argues that a celestial object has an influence on a person at the time of their birth. It isn't even logical that upon exiting the birth canal, a person would be influenced at that exact time, and that time only, in some permanent way, by anything other than the immediate environment.


Logic schmogic. Wasn't it Jefferson who once said I'd rather believe two Yankee scientists can lie than believe that stones fall from the heavens? Logic can guide our investigations, but it doesn't determine their validity.

nebularain
2002-Jul-19, 11:31 AM
On 2002-07-18 21:57, ljbrs wrote:
Now, Astrology is simply a lot of silliness which is believed by many people. The positions of the Zodiacal constellations have nothing to do with anything about anybody's life. Regardless of which famous physicists or astronomers of the distant past believed in astrology, astrology is not a valid determiner of a person's present or future. Scientifically, astrology is meaningless.


I completely agree. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif

Jim
2002-Jul-19, 12:51 PM
On 2002-07-18 21:25, beskeptical wrote:
On an anecdotal note...


Whoa! I'd be very careful about using anecdotal accounts on this BB. I was roundly chastised in another thread for using one.



G o W, ... (c)orrect me if I'm wrong, but you are saying there is a possible connection between personality and birth date, not due to influence by celestial objects, but rather due to other influences like time of year.


I think that's what GoW was saying. At least, that's how I read it.



If that is the case, I don't think that hypothesis would pan out but I wouldn't write that one off.


Good. An open mind.



However, I do not equate such an hypothesis with astrology. Astrology argues that a celestial object has an influence on a person at the time of their birth.


Well, astrology says your time of birth determines; tying that to the positions of the planets was a way of explaining why.

Consider: Centuries ago, someone notices that a child/adult behaves in a particular way. Why? These people don't know a lot about nutrition, but they know a lot about Nature. This child was born in late May... a Taurus. And lots of other Taureans display the same personality. Hey, maybe it's the stars!

But, hasn't medical science made similar mistakes through the years... trying to attach a presumed cause to an observed effect, only to find out later that the presumption was wrong? (Hysteria... hysterectomies...)

Saying that "the stars" determine who we are and what we will become is a stretch. But, saying that your personality could be determined by the time of year you are born (concieved) just might be (at least partly) correct.

I seem to recall hearing a lot the last few decades about the role prenatal nutrition plays on the developing fetus. This is the environment (nuture) that the fetus experiences.

If it can help determine how developed physically and mentally a child is - and becomes - then why can't it also affect the child's personality? The brain is developing under those same nutritional influences as the body, and the brain is the seat of personality. (Not the heart, as was once believed... by medical science.)

You mention (anecdotally) that infants seem to be born with distinct personalities. Why do you presume that this must be the result of genetics alone, or even primarily?

(added text)
_________________
<font color=000099>Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.</font>
Isaac Asimov

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Jim on 2002-07-19 08:55 ]</font>

2002-Jul-19, 01:28 PM
<a name="20020719.5:15"> page 20020719.5:15 aka centiMeters / sec & Math Hour
On 2002-07-12 15:16, samsara15 wrote: To: HUb' ? 5:16 A.M. PST
I'd be interested to see if astrology fans could come up with any reason WHY the planets should affect our destiny. Let them Give the world a cause and effect relationhip that can be tested in some sort of objective manner, and then provide a theory as to why it ought to work, so the theory could be tested. I'd also be interested in seeing astrology fans making some predictions based on their theories and then providing some data. Of course, that will never happen unless scientific people can pin them down enough to make their ideas testable.
---------------- Gladly {try this} Link
http://almagest.as.utexas.edu/~rlr/mlrs.html
using "THOSE" texas astronomy numbers
for RANGE to the Moon: Compute [using YOUR computer]
the AVERAGE recession velocity of the MOON
in centimers per second PLEASE! now My calculation for
date of inpact of the MOON on Earth.. {using My Keyboard} < 4.5 Gy {a Gy = Galactic Year }[ that the time it takes Sun?System to Round Galaxy}( 250,000,000 years: Asimov or 24e7 "Me")

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-19, 02:10 PM
On 2002-07-19 08:51, Jim wrote:
I seem to recall hearing a lot the last few decades about the role prenatal nutrition plays on the developing fetus. This is the environment (nuture) that the fetus experiences.

Yes, I don't see many disputing this today.

I could, if I dig around a little, find something I came up with a few years ago to explain biorhythms, in a similar fashion. OK, that was easy, here it is (http://mentock.home.mindspring.com/astrorhy.htm).

Jim
2002-Jul-19, 03:15 PM
Neat link, Grapes. Thanks.

I have to admit that astrology has bothered me for many years. At one time, I had (still have, I think) a basic casting book. I used it for me, among others. It was amazingly close on describing me. (I'm so d$%# Taurus it's scary!) And it was very close on the others I cast. (The more it got into details, the poorer the match.)

However, being of a practical mindset (as are most Taureans), I could never buy into the classic "it's the stars" argument.

So, you see my dilemma. I am what astrology says I should be, but I can't accept the reasons astrology offers.

Your link offers a much better explanation.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-19, 05:05 PM
On 2002-07-19 10:10, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-19 08:51, Jim wrote:
I seem to recall hearing a lot the last few decades about the role prenatal nutrition plays on the developing fetus. This is the environment (nuture) that the fetus experiences.

Yes, I don't see many disputing this today.

I could, if I dig around a little, find something I came up with a few years ago to explain biorhythms, in a similar fashion. OK, that was easy, here it is (http://mentock.home.mindspring.com/astrorhy.htm).


Of course nutrition plays a big role in fetal development. Duh! How is that relevant to the question of nurture vs nature?

How do you study the contribution of genetics in personality vs environment? You don't take one of those in isolation and say, "see what a big impact this has".


My original statement was, if one presented supporting research on astrology it would either be bad research or a bad analysis of coincidences. Your link looks at whether some research in astrology could potentially find it has or had validity. Without making any assumptions about the outcome of such research, there still has to be some basis for the hypothesis.

An excuse is offered for current research failing to validate any relationship between personality and birth date, that the research would have all been done on groups whose conception or birth had occurred in different geographical locations:

"Why then has astrology consistently failed almost all scientific tests? The first, and most obvious, reason is that the seasons are not the same everywhere. In fact, they are reversed from the Northern Hemisphere to the Southern. This also explains why astrology might have developed in the first place--it was limited to a small region where the seasons were fairly regular. In the Nile basin, even the availability of food was fixed by the calendar, as the Nile river regularly flooded its banks and nourished the farmlands on a yearly basis. The expansion of the idea of astrology out of that region would destroy any all-inclusive correlation."

Are they asserting astrology was developed only in single climates and locations? Astrology was developed by the Greeks who I believe originated from Mesopotamia not Egypt. I doubt Ptolomy developed it all on his own from scratch.

Are they claiming people did not migrate a few thousand years ago? Greeks and Egyptians intermingled extensively a few thousand years ago. Ptolomy was Greco-Egyptian, c. AD 120-180. I doubt he was the first and only immigrant to Egypt.

"Could the signs of personality be a result of the infant's experience within the womb? This has been suggested many times (see Scientology), but there is an interesting astrological interpretation. ... Personality may have a genetic origin, but it does seem to have an environmental origin. How could the date of birth be correlated with personality type? The influence of environment extends over long periods of time, not just at the singular instance of birth. ... it is not unreasonable to assume that the fetus would be shaped by the shifting moods of the mother as the seasons change."

There is no basis for the premise that today's results would differ from the time astrology was developed. If there were any correlation between climate or other such factors it would have shown up today. It might have differed but it wouldn't have disappeared.

The article concludes premature babies would be unlikely to survive in the past therefore the time from conception to birth was more consistent. Research today would be influenced by increased survival of premies. How many premies would it take to skew results? Michel and Francoise Gauquelin published in 1982, 20 years of data collected on 40,000 Europeans looking for correlations between birth signs, jobs and personalities. None was found.

"Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can be severe, and the chemical imbalances induced by seasonal emotional changes of the mother might influence the development of the fetus. Thus, we have a possible correlation between personality type and the seasons, and so too with the calendar."

Very bad logic!!! SAD is not universal, it is not even that common. It occurs when there are less hours of daylight, not fewer sunny days. To assert such an illness would have had an impact in the Mideast one would have to show that it was more common than not in that part of the world. To assert the premise that there are "chemical imbalances induced by seasonal emotional changes of the mother" contradicts the other premise that such influences would not exist in any studies today. And if SAD had any influence, it should be more prevalent in the far southern and northern latitudes. IE winter babies would be more similar to winter babies and summer babies would be more similar to summer babies. There is sufficient data to rule that out.

"If your parents did not closely monitor the signs of ovulation, and carefully record the times of sex, there is little hope of establishing your time of conception. (Ultrasound measurements of bone lengths might be regular enough to allow backwards computation of conception time.)"

So the logic is that seasons affect the fetus via the mom and the difference is measurable to within what time frame? Days, weeks, months?

"Our "scientific" interpretation of astrology depended upon the assumption that seasonal environmental effects would influence the development of the fetus. Biorhythms have no such component, as they are said to be independent of the seasons, and are fixed by the date of birth. The biorhythms are the same for everyone, regardless of the season of birth, starting at the date of birth."

Doesn't this contradict their other logic?


I have no arguement about biorhythms. There are clear basis and research to support them. The following number rattling has no basis other than someone made it up:

"If we look at all numbers from 15 to 60, the harmonics that come closest, in order, are for periods of length 28, 26, 52, 33, 23, 16, and 46. The periods of the biorhythms are the best candidates, except for the periods of length 26 and 52 days. This way of deriving the length of biorhythms was not utilized in the original theory. Thus, possibly, the length of the biorhythms could have been selected by a pressure to find natural harmonics of the day and subharmonics of the year."

The article does very little to support any case for "natural harmonics". Have you ever listened to Louis Farakhan cite his numbers that are supposed evidence for conspiracies?

"This discussion is mere speculation, of course, but it is scientifically-based explanation in that it does not appeal to unknown physical laws."

Maybe in that author's opinion. I see inaccurate premises and poor logic. I'm not just trying to discount all these ideas because I don't find them mainstream enough. This clearly falls into the realm of pseudoscience. Many of the same falacies are used as in the Moon Hoax and Young Earth explanations. I am very surprised they aren't obvious to you.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-19, 05:23 PM
On 2002-07-19 00:49, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
No, not necessarily. In fact, almost definitely not. Birth date and prenatal time frames are no longer as well correlated for one thing--and different countries experience different climates at different times. I'm saying that it could have been a valid observation 2000 years ago.

You don't seem to understand my question. Are you asserting seasons affected personalities or the stars?



Logic schmogic. ... Logic can guide our investigations, but it doesn't determine their validity.


What makes you think I am argueing against that. Scientific inquiry should be based on logical outcomes of solid premises.

I can't help feeling you are missing what I am saying. Astrology is not going to be shown to have a basis in fact as sufficient research has been done to rule it out and it was not based on a valid premise when it was developed. That says nothing about the validity of any other scientific research.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-19, 05:53 PM
On 2002-07-19 08:51, Jim wrote:


On 2002-07-18 21:25, beskeptical wrote:
On an anecdotal note...


Whoa! I'd be very careful about using anecdotal accounts on this BB. I was roundly chastised in another thread for using one.

I don't know the context of your being chastised but I clearly said I was not presenting anecdotes as supporting evidence. If you read very many of my posts and get to know me you will see there is no question I'd be one of the first people to call someone on anecdotal evidence.


B.:
If that is the case, I don't think that hypothesis would pan out but I wouldn't write that one off.



Jim Good. An open mind.

Hooray! Someone understands what I'm saying. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif


Jim:Consider: Centuries ago, someone notices that a child/adult behaves in a particular way. Why? These people don't know a lot about nutrition, but they know a lot about Nature. This child was born in late May... a Taurus. And lots of other Taureans display the same personality. Hey, maybe it's the stars!

But people don't have similarities in personality based on conception dates nor birthdates.


Jim:But, hasn't medical science made similar mistakes through the years... trying to attach a presumed cause to an observed effect, only to find out later that the presumption was wrong? (Hysteria... hysterectomies...)

Absolutely.


Jim:If {prenatal nutrition} can help determine how developed physically and mentally a child is - and becomes - then why can't it also affect the child's personality? The brain is developing under those same nutritional influences as the body, and the brain is the seat of personality. (Not the heart, as was once believed... by medical science.)

Prenatal development can certainly affect a person's personality. The question was nature vs nurture not does nurture have an impact.

Many people make the wrong assumption that if I argue for the science of medicine I am arguing for current (and/or past) western medicine. I am not. Western medical practitioners have only recently focused on evidence based medicine. It developed over the last 100 or so years. Prior to that, some medical practices were based on good observational science and some were not. To this day there are many hangovers from the non-science days. That's why it is so important for people to learn about logic and research. Both the doctor and the patient need to understand science to give/get the best care.


Jim:You mention (anecdotally) that infants seem to be born with distinct personalities. Why do you presume that this must be the result of genetics alone, or even primarily?

Genetic research and twin studies. I have to find the references and can then share them if anyone is still interested. I think the evidence is strong for a greater nature influence. The question is by no means resolved.

informant
2002-Jul-19, 06:00 PM
beskeptical wrote:
Astrology was developed by the Greeks who I believe originated from Mesopotamia not Egypt.

If I'm not mistaken, astrology was already practised in Mesopotamia by the Chaldean priests before the Greeks arrived. In those days, it was closely related to religion.
After Alexander's conquests, the Greeks ruled Egypt and the Middle East for some time. This is usually called the Hellenistic period, because of that.
It was in Hellenistic times that astrology broke loose from religion, and became a secular practice.
I think you may be mistaken when you say that the Greeks originated from Mesopotamia. Astrology itself, however, did originate from Mesopotamia.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-19, 06:04 PM
On 2002-07-19 13:05, beskeptical wrote:
Of course nutrition plays a big role in fetal development. Duh! How is that relevant to the question of nurture vs nature?

Duh back atcha. Nutrition is part of nurture, whereas you asserted (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=41) that the largest component of such fetal development is DNA (nature).


How do you study the contribution of genetics in personality vs environment? You don't take one of those in isolation and say, "see what a big impact this has".

It's not really even a question of which has the biggest impact--it's whether one of them has a measureable or noticeable impact.


There is no basis for the premise that today's results would differ from the time astrology was developed. If there were any correlation between climate or other such factors it would have shown up today. It might have differed but it wouldn't have disappeared.

Are you saying that you know of a study that included that factor? I've reviewed some of the "scientific study of astrology" literature, and I haven't found one.


The article concludes premature babies would be unlikely to survive in the past therefore the time from conception to birth was more consistent. Research today would be influenced by increased survival of premies. How many premies would it take to skew results? Michel and Francoise Gauquelin published in 1982, 20 years of data collected on 40,000 Europeans looking for correlations between birth signs, jobs and personalities. None was found.

It's not just premies, though. It's just an observation that there was probably a higher correlation between conception time and birth date in the distant past. Different climates also factor into it--and today, we can have foods in the winter that just weren't available then even a hundred years ago.


Very bad logic!!! SAD is not universal, it is not even that common. It occurs when there are less hours of daylight, not fewer sunny days. To assert such an illness would have had an impact in the Mideast one would have to show that it was more common than not in that part of the world. To assert the premise that there are "chemical imbalances induced by seasonal emotional changes of the mother" contradicts the other premise that such influences would not exist in any studies today. And if SAD had any influence, it should be more prevalent in the far southern and northern latitudes. IE winter babies would be more similar to winter babies and summer babies would be more similar to summer babies. There is sufficient data to rule that out.

Very bad logic? I disagree.

SAD is just an example of what we know today, how the health of the mother can affect the development of the fetus.


So the logic is that seasons affect the fetus via the mom and the difference is measurable to within what time frame? Days, weeks, months?

I don't think it has ever been studied.


"Our "scientific" interpretation of astrology depended upon the assumption that seasonal environmental effects would influence the development of the fetus. Biorhythms have no such component, as they are said to be independent of the seasons, and are fixed by the date of birth. The biorhythms are the same for everyone, regardless of the season of birth, starting at the date of birth."

Doesn't this contradict their other logic?

I'm not sure what you think is the contradiction. I, of course, was the author. The statement about biorhythms is just a fact about how biorhythms are used, not an assertion about whether they are valid or not.


I have no arguement about biorhythms. There are clear basis and research to support them.

I'm surprised to hear that. I was under the opposite impression. Do you have some studies?


The following number rattling has no basis other than someone made it up:

"If we look at all numbers from 15 to 60, the harmonics that come closest, in order, are for periods of length 28, 26, 52, 33, 23, 16, and 46. The periods of the biorhythms are the best candidates, except for the periods of length 26 and 52 days. This way of deriving the length of biorhythms was not utilized in the original theory. Thus, possibly, the length of the biorhythms could have been selected by a pressure to find natural harmonics of the day and subharmonics of the year."

Made it up? No, it is quite easy to calculate. I didn't make it up at all. Why would you say that?


Maybe in that author's opinion. I see inaccurate premises and poor logic.

Please be specific, I'll try to address each of them.



On 2002-07-19 13:23, beskeptical wrote:
You don't seem to understand my question. Are you asserting seasons affected personalities or the stars?

We're working on an understanding. The seasons definitely did affect nutrition--certainly more then than they do today. I don't see it as much of a stretch to imagine that a certain vitamin deficiency in the first trimester would have a different effect than if the same deficiencey occurred in the second trimester--thus, a correlation with fetal development and the seasons could have been established.

nebularain
2002-Jul-20, 12:12 AM
On 2002-07-19 11:15, Jim wrote:
I have to admit that astrology has bothered me for many years. At one time, I had (still have, I think) a basic casting book. I used it for me, among others. It was amazingly close on describing me. (I'm so d$%# Taurus it's scary!) And it was very close on the others I cast. (The more it got into details, the poorer the match.)

However, being of a practical mindset (as are most Taureans), I could never buy into the classic "it's the stars" argument.

So, you see my dilemma. I am what astrology says I should be, but I can't accept the reasons astrology offers.


If it's any consolation to you, I'm so practical minded that it annoys people around me (most especially when they are trying to be sarcastic). I was born in November; no where near the Taurus time-frame!

Jim
2002-Jul-20, 02:24 AM
On 2002-07-19 13:53, beskeptical wrote:
I don't know the context of your being chastised ... there is no question I'd be one of the first people to call someone on anecdotal evidence.


Yes, I know. You rather roundly and poitnedly chastised me. (I suppose my feelings should be hurt that you don't remember.)

Of coures, you did suggest you might have some research to back it up. I didn't say that... and you didn't ask.


Jim Good. An open mind.

Be: Hooray! Someone understands what I'm saying. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif


But do you understand that's what GoW and I are saying, too?

Most folks take the attitude that astrology is "junk science" at best, hokum and a con at worst. If you stick to "the influence of the stars," they have a point. But, as GoW has pointed out, there could be other explanations.

I certainly accept that nature has a lot to do with personality, but I feel nurture could play an important role as well.



But people don't have similarities in personality based on conception dates nor birthdates.


Oops, mind closed again.


Jim:But, hasn't medical science made similar mistakes through the years... trying to attach a presumed cause to an observed effect, only to find out later that the presumption was wrong? (Hysteria... hysterectomies...)

Be: Absolutely.


Then maybe you can see my point. Many things that were accepted by science as absolute, gospel truth at one time have been disproven. If that alone is the criterion for "pseudo" or "junk" science, then everything we think we know today is in jeopardy.

Perhaps we should say that "junk science" is using scientific data (the positions of the planets at any given time is certainly good science) to support a cause and effect relationship, but doing so in violation of the scientific method.

That would seem to include astrology while excluding, say, tonsilectomies (once considered necessary, now not).



Be: Prenatal development can certainly affect a person's personality. The question was nature vs nurture not does nurture have an impact.


But, you seemed to be discounting the nuture aspect, almost tossing it aside off-handedly.


Jim:You mention (anecdotally) that infants seem to be born with distinct personalities. Why do you presume that this must be the result of genetics alone, or even primarily?

Be: Genetic research and twin studies. I have to find the references and can then share them if anyone is still interested. I think the evidence is strong for a greater nature influence. The question is by no means resolved.


"Genetic research?" Have they found a "personality gene?" (Okay, facetious comment.)

But, "twin research"...

Twins share the same genetics and the same prebirth environment... same date of conception, same nutritional aspects, same birth date. If they have the same personalities, how do you separate the "nature" from the "nurture?" If they have different personalities, ditto?

To clarify my position, I certainly believe that genetics plays a large role in determining personality, but I'm not convinced that it is the only - and possibly not the major - determinant. I am very convinced that personality is not determined by the positions of the planets at birth (or conception).

But, if genetics isn't everything and the stars aren't anything, there must be something else that plays a role.

GoW has offered an interesting possibility, which does not seem to be based on "junk science." I'm willing to consider it.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 03:01 AM
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=PubMed&cmd=Display&dopt=pubmed_pubmed&from_uid=10100814

Lets see if this reference link works for some research on nature vs nurture.

I'll have to get back to Jim and G o W later. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-20, 05:40 AM
Link seems to work.

(8 (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov:80/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=9569654&dopt=Abstract)) "Phenotypic variance in adult levels of ego development appears to have substantial genetic and environmental sources." -- does that seem sort of obvious, or am I misreading it?

David Hall
2002-Jul-20, 06:43 AM
On 2002-07-19 14:04, GrapesOfWrath wrote:

It's not just premies, though. It's just an observation that there was probably a higher correlation between conception time and birth date in the distant past. Different climates also factor into it--and today, we can have foods in the winter that just weren't available then even a hundred years ago.

I saw a documentary recently where they argued that contamination of rye and other grains by a psychedelic fungus may have been the source of much of the witch-burnings and other mass hysteria of the late middle ages. The growth of this fungus was in turn brought on by cool wet weather from the "little ice age" of the 14-1600's. The growth of this fungus would have been directly tied to the seasons, as it was tied to the grains that were harvested.

So if similar things can also happen elsewhere, perhaps the availability of certain foodstuffs at certain times had more effect than you'd think.

I've also just thought of another possibility. If nurture plays a big part in personality, perhaps it had something to do with the way children were raised. If, for example in Mesopotamia where this was supposed to have originated there were various customs in raising children that were based on the seasons, children born at different times would experience these customs in a sequence that would directly correspond with their ages. These various important or traumatic experiences may have had differing effects on children at different critical times in development.

It's probably far-fetched, I know. But it may be something to consider.




I have no arguement about biorhythms. There are clear basis and research to support them.

I'm surprised to hear that. I was under the opposite impression. Do you have some studies?



Me too. I always thought biorhythms were complete bunk. Even considering the harmonics idea in Grapes' link doesn't cut it for me. Life is too variable. If a rhythm is off by even a few minutes, that's enough over the course of a few months or years to completely throw everything off-synch.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 08:28 AM
On 2002-07-20 02:43, David Hall wrote:
I saw a documentary recently where they argued that contamination of rye and other grains by a psychedelic fungus may have been the source of much of the witch-burnings and other mass hysteria of the late middle ages. The growth of this fungus was in turn brought on by cool wet weather from the "little ice age" of the 14-1600's. The growth of this fungus would have been directly tied to the seasons, as it was tied to the grains that were harvested.


I saw the same documentary. On the one hand it was an interesting hypothesis. On the other hand it neglected all the other cases of witch burning that went on all across Europe at the same time. And, it failed to account for the lack of other historical instances of contaminated grain effects. But all that is beside the point and getting away from the question of astrology.


So if similar things can also happen elsewhere, perhaps the availability of certain foodstuffs at certain times had more effect than you'd think.

I've also just thought of another possibility. If nurture plays a big part in personality, perhaps it had something to do with the way children were raised. If, for example in Mesopotamia where this was supposed to have originated there were various customs in raising children that were based on the seasons, children born at different times would experience these customs in a sequence that would directly correspond with their ages. These various important or traumatic experiences may have had differing effects on children at different critical times in development.

It's probably far-fetched, I know. But it may be something to consider.

Lets look at this whole issue in its pieces:

The premise is that astrology developed from observations that personality traits were associated with seasons or weather by direct or indirect means (maternal hormones, food supplies, or whatever).

The effect occurred either the time of conception, during the fetal development period, or the time of birth and perhaps for a short period afterward.

And people who made these observations attributed the observed personality traits to the position of the planets and stars at the time of birth.

And somehow, the observed personality traits do not show up in studies done today because of all the reasons cited, change in diet, increased mobility of populations and ?????????? whatever.

All this speculation depends on the underlying premise that time of year influences personality, for whatever reason. This is a false premise. There is no data to support this premise and there is a mountain of data that does not support it.

Then there is the second premise that the influence disappeared over the last 2,000+/- years. This is a false premise. In 2,000 years some populations have remained much the same, especially in rural Europe and rural Asia.

No basis has been presented to conclude populations from 2,000 years ago were any more homogeneous than today. Everyone did not eat the same diets (consider aristocrats and peasants for example), everyone did not live in the same climatic region, (coastal areas, river valleys, mountains, islands), and lets not leave out rural and densely populated cities as having different influences.

If one wanted to argue that birth seasons may have had a consistent effect on personality, (and it would have to be consistent to be observable and identified), then the first thing that would need to be shown is that something, anything, differed over the year, on a regular basis, and affected a large enough percentage of the population to show up as a trend.

Remember, we are not discussing the premise that hormones, food, weather, or whatever have any effect, we are discussing whether such things have the same affect on lots of people.



Beskep:I have no arguement about biorhythms. There are clear basis and research to support them.


Grapes:I'm surprised to hear that. I was under the opposite impression. Do you have some studies?


Dave Hall:Me too. I always thought biorhythms were complete bunk. Even considering the harmonics idea in Grapes' link doesn't cut it for me. Life is too variable. If a rhythm is off by even a few minutes, that's enough over the course of a few months or years to completely throw everything off-synch.

I'm not talking about the biorhythm chart you get from the psychic fair, nor the number nonsense on G o W's link. I'm talking about physiological body rhythms.

Circadian rhythms of our sleep-wake periods and alert-'need a nap' periods have been well studied. Hormones rise and fall during the day and night.

Melatonin has been studied for instance. We have increased blood levels during sleep. Melatonin is one dietary supplement that has had repeatable results for inducing sleep. (There is a problem with production quality control since there are no standards for the supps. on sale but research supports that the stuff does work.)

Male and female hormones during one's lifetime have predictible patterns you could definitely call rhythms. These are the kind of biorhythm I was referring to.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-07-20 04:35 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 08:41 AM
On 2002-07-19 14:00, informant wrote:
[quote]beskeptical wrote:
Astrology was developed by the Greeks who I believe originated from Mesopotamia not Egypt.


I think you may be mistaken when you say that the Greeks originated from Mesopotamia. Astrology itself, however, did originate from Mesopotamia.


I was guessing, but Mesopotamia means 'between two rivers' in Greek according to my teeny tiny history reference. I couldn't figure out who came from where.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 08:50 AM
On 2002-07-20 01:40, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Link seems to work.

(8 (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov:80/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=9569654&dopt=Abstract)) "Phenotypic variance in adult levels of ego development appears to have substantial genetic and environmental sources." -- does that seem sort of obvious, or am I misreading it?


I linked to the search results without picking the ones that agreed with me. I think if you peruse the ones that have abstracts that apply to the general population (as opposed to kids with illnesses like psych disorders) you will see a strong trend toward nature having a greater influence than nurture.

Remember, I haven't said nurture has zero influence. I think most people in the field have concluded the effects of both play a big role. But what I do think, on the basis of the genetic research that has come to light recently, and on other research such as is cited here, that nature will be found to play the biggest role.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 10:04 AM
On 2002-07-19 22:24, Jim wrote:


On 2002-07-19 13:53, beskeptical wrote:
I don't know the context of your being chastised ... there is no question I'd be one of the first people to call someone on anecdotal evidence.


Yes, I know. You rather roundly and poitnedly chastised me. (I suppose my feelings should be hurt that you don't remember.)

Don't have hurt feelings. I was absorbed in the astrology thread. Are we talking the peacock thing? Actually, I would have bought that anecdotal evidence if I hadn't found a resource contradicting it. I find your posts intelligent and interesting.


Jim Good. An open mind.

Be: Hooray! Someone understands what I'm saying. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif

J:But do you understand that's what GoW and I are saying, too?

Yes but I think the logic is flawed. See my post above.


B: But people don't have similarities in personality based on conception dates nor birthdates.

J: Oops, mind closed again.

One would be lying to say they were open to 'every possibility' unless they were also open to every bizarre claim that has ever been made. Maybe the Earth is flat, maybe it it is 6,000 years old, maybe fairys and leprechans exist. I am just drawing the line in a different place. I am not closed minded to legitimite inquirey and I am by no means of the opinion we know everything there is to know.


Jim:But, hasn't medical science made similar mistakes through the years... trying to attach a presumed cause to an observed effect, only to find out later that the presumption was wrong? (Hysteria... hysterectomies...)

Be: Absolutely.

J:Then maybe you can see my point. Many things that were accepted by science as absolute, gospel truth at one time have been disproven. If that alone is the criterion for "pseudo" or "junk" science, then everything we think we know today is in jeopardy.

There are plenty of closed minded scientists. That doesn't change the scientific process. Scientists can make mistakes, they can present fraudulent data, none of that changes the scientific process.

Psuedoscience doesn't use the scientific process in the first place.


J: Perhaps we should say that "junk science" is using scientific data (the positions of the planets at any given time is certainly good science) to support a cause and effect relationship, but doing so in violation of the scientific method.

That would seem to include astrology while excluding, say, tonsilectomies (once considered necessary, now not).

Using scientific data that has no relationship to the cause and effect isn't using the scientific method.

Tonsilectomies were not well studied before they became common. Actually, that anecdotal evidence was probably to blame. But there was at least a logical premise behind the procedure: tonsils repeatedly infected, remove the focus of infection and cure the problem. This was true for other situations, appendectomies for example. So there was a legitimate premise in doing a tonsilectomy. What went wrong was the hypothesis based on the legitimate premise was not tested.



J: But, you seemed to be discounting the nuture aspect, almost tossing it aside off-handedly.


No, sorry, I didn't mean that. Just that genes play a bigger role, and, that is my opinion but I certainly recognize the question has not been settled.


Jim:You mention (anecdotally) that infants seem to be born with distinct personalities. Why do you presume that this must be the result of genetics alone, or even primarily?

Be: Genetic research and twin studies. I have to find the references and can then share them if anyone is still interested. I think the evidence is strong for a greater nature influence. The question is by no means resolved.

J: "Genetic research?" Have they found a "personality gene?" (Okay, facetious comment.)

But, "twin research"...

Twins share the same genetics and the same prebirth environment... same date of conception, same nutritional aspects, same birth date. If they have the same personalities, how do you separate the "nature" from the "nurture?" If they have different personalities, ditto?

You control for these other variables by comparing identical twins to fraternal twins. And you also look at twins raised apart.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-20, 10:55 AM
On 2002-07-19 14:04, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-19 13:05, beskeptical wrote:
Of course nutrition plays a big role in fetal development. Duh! How is that relevant to the question of nurture vs nature?

Duh back atcha. Nutrition is part of nurture, whereas you asserted (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=41) that the largest component of such fetal development is DNA (nature).


Its hard to answer all this because we clearly are talking in different directions.

Nature vs nurture does not mean one has an impact and the other doesn't. I just meant I believe the evidence points to nature as having a greater impact. That's synonomous with 'larger'. (Just kidding /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif )


B:How do you study the contribution of genetics in personality vs environment? You don't take one of those in isolation and say, "see what a big impact this has".

GoW:It's not really even a question of which has the biggest impact--it's whether one of them has a measureable or noticeable impact.

Yes, I understand what you mean here. And I say nurture has a measurable impact, but not one that correlates with seasons, nor climate. See my post to Dave above as it applies equally to your post. I just answered his first.


B: Very bad logic!!! SAD is not universal, it is not even that common. It occurs when there are less hours of daylight, not fewer sunny days. To assert such an illness would have had an impact in the Mideast one would have to show that it was more common than not in that part of the world. To assert the premise that there are "chemical imbalances induced by seasonal emotional changes of the mother" contradicts the other premise that such influences would not exist in any studies today. And if SAD had any influence, it should be more prevalent in the far southern and northern latitudes. IE winter babies would be more similar to winter babies and summer babies would be more similar to summer babies. There is sufficient data to rule that out.

GoW:Very bad logic? I disagree.

SAD is just an example of what we know today, how the health of the mother can affect the development of the fetus.

You keep missing the point. Lots of things affect the fetus, but none of the things correlate with personality and birthdate.

Does astrology have any predictive value? No. Did it have predictive value in the past? No (see post above for further elboration). Are people born on the same day at the same time in the same place in any way similar in personality (except twins)? No. If you look at 40,000 examples (and all the other studies) and no trend appears, it is not going to appear by magic in the next study.


B:So the logic is that seasons affect the fetus via the mom and the difference is measurable to within what time frame? Days, weeks, months?

GoW:I don't think it has ever been studied.

So how can astrology have any validity?


B:Doesn't this contradict their other logic?

GoW:I'm not sure what you think is the contradiction. I, of course, was the author. The statement about biorhythms is just a fact about how biorhythms are used, not an assertion about whether they are valid or not.?

Well, either birthdate matters or it doesn't, which is it?


B:I have no arguement about biorhythms. There are clear basis and research to support them.

GoW:I'm surprised to hear that. I was under the opposite impression. Do you have some studies?.

Not the same biorhythms you are referring to, see above post.


B:The following number rattling has no basis other than someone made it up:

GoW:"If we look at all numbers from 15 to 60, the harmonics that come closest, in order, are for periods of length 28, 26, 52, 33, 23, 16, and 46. The periods of the biorhythms are the best candidates, except for the periods of length 26 and 52 days. This way of deriving the length of biorhythms was not utilized in the original theory. Thus, possibly, the length of the biorhythms could have been selected by a pressure to find natural harmonics of the day and subharmonics of the year."

Made it up? No, it is quite easy to calculate. I didn't make it up at all. Why would you say that?

Is there any basis for humans or other animals to derive benefit from harmonic sounds or waves? Day and night rhythms, season to mate rhythms, these have a basis to hypothesize a connection.


B: Maybe in that author's opinion. I see inaccurate premises and poor logic.

GoW:Please be specific, I'll try to address each of them.

I think I have addressed everything between this and the last few posts.



On 2002-07-19 13:23, beskeptical wrote:
You don't seem to understand my question. Are you asserting seasons affected personalities or the stars?

GoW:We're working on an understanding. The seasons definitely did affect nutrition--certainly more then than they do today. I don't see it as much of a stretch to imagine that a certain vitamin deficiency in the first trimester would have a different effect than if the same deficiencey occurred in the second trimester--thus, a correlation with fetal development and the seasons could have been established.


You have to start with evidence personalities similar because of birthdate, for whatever reason. If birthdate cannot predict personality, what is the point of speculating all the reasons it might have occurred? In other words, it's like arguing why the world might be flat when it isn't flat.

I'm too tired to edit any typos.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-20, 03:21 PM
On 2002-07-20 06:55, beskeptical wrote:
Its hard to answer all this because we clearly are talking in different directions.

But I hope you have answered your question of whether nutrition could be relevant to "nature vs nurture"?


Yes, I understand what you mean here. And I say nurture has a measurable impact, but not one that correlates with seasons, nor climate.

There have been no studies that support that, one way or the other, to my knowledge.


Does astrology have any predictive value? No. Did it have predictive value in the past? No

How do you know it did not have predictive value in the past? Other than just extrapolating your current beliefs back?



B:So the logic is that seasons affect the fetus via the mom and the difference is measurable to within what time frame? Days, weeks, months?

GoW:I don't think it has ever been studied.

So how can astrology have any validity?

Just because something has not been studied, does not mean it cannot be valid. That's why we do studies after all--to see if things are valid.


Well, either birthdate matters or it doesn't, which is it?

You may have misread that part. Birthdate is crucial to both astrology and Biorhythms (I'll use a capital B to differentiate it from ordinary biological rhythms), but that work basically was showing the possibility that a correlation between personality and time of conception could have mutated into an observation about the birth time.


Not the same biorhythms you are referring to, see above post.

Glad we cleared that up.


Is there any basis for humans or other animals to derive benefit from harmonic sounds or waves? Day and night rhythms, season to mate rhythms, these have a basis to hypothesize a connection.

Harmonic sounds or waves? They weren't sound waves. One example given was the division of time into weeks--each week is seven times the day period, which makes it a harmonic of the day, and it very nearly evenly divides the year--which would make it a subharmonic of the year.



Be:Maybe in that author's opinion. I see inaccurate premises and poor logic.

GoW:Please be specific, I'll try to address each of them.

I think I have addressed everything between this and the last few posts.

Hmmm. I looked over your list of premises, as you view them, in the post 2002-07-20 04:28. I was impressed because I thought it was an accurate paraphrase--but those premises are also valid. The two inaccurate premises you mention are not mine--they are your own misinterpretations. I have numbered them:



{1} The premise is that astrology developed from observations that personality traits were associated with seasons or weather by direct or indirect means (maternal hormones, food supplies, or whatever).

We know that this can happen in individuals. The question is, could the enviromental factors have been strong enough and consistent enough to have the effect be noticeable in groups.


(2) The effect occurred either the time of conception, during the fetal development period, or the time of birth and perhaps for a short period afterward.

That's just a restatement of "The effect occurred."


(3) And people who made these observations attributed the observed personality traits to the position of the planets and stars at the time of birth.

That's certainly true, whether their attribution is valid or not.


(4) And somehow, the observed personality traits do not show up in studies done today because of all the reasons cited, change in diet, increased mobility of populations and ?????????? whatever.

None of the above premises seem out of the mainstream, to me.


(5) All this speculation depends on the underlying premise that time of year influences personality, for whatever reason. This is a false premise. There is no data to support this premise and there is a mountain of data that does not support it.

As you point out in the premise 4, effect wouldn't show up in today's data, and we don't have any data from history--other than what Ptolemy left us, which supports it.


(5) Then there is the second premise that the influence disappeared over the last 2,000+/- years. This is a false premise. In 2,000 years some populations have remained much the same, especially in rural Europe and rural Asia.

I wouldn't think anyone would disagree that our modern society is considerably different from the agrarian society of ancient Egypt. You're not seriously suggesting that those astrology studies were restricted to populations in rural Asia?

beskeptical
2002-Jul-21, 12:00 AM
Grapes, can I call you Grapes? I'm going to try to simplify things, there still are misunderstandings here and I am pretty sure I understand what you are saying but you are missing some of the points I am trying to make. I'm not trying to say I get it and you don't but that your responses indicate you don't understand what Im saying.

(On 2002-07-20 11:21, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
On 2002-07-20 06:55, beskeptical wrote:)

G: "But I hope you have answered your question of whether nutrition could be relevant to "nature vs nurture"?"

Nutrition is relevant to nurture. I don't understand why you think I disagree with that. The question of nature vs nurture is not whether either one contributes to personality. I merely stated it was my conclusion based on the research I have read that I believe nature is playing a bigger role than nurture. I have cited some of the current research for anyone to evaluate for themselves. I agree the question is not fully resolved. I agree both play major roles in personality development.

G: "There have been no studies that support {"nurture has a measurable impact, but not one that correlates with seasons, nor climate."}, one way or the other, to my knowledge."

Hundreds of studies have looked for correlations between birth dates and anything in common that people born on the same dates might have. I cited the SkepDic which had other citations and the 20 year, 40,000 Europeans study by the French researchers. Once you have repeatable studies with large sample sizes, you can at some point say the results are in. Birthdates do not correlate with any personality traits.

So whether seasons, climate, fetal conditions, etc can affect one's personality or not is irrelevant. There are no correlations with birthdates, nor conception dates. If there were an effect it would have shown up in at least some of the studies done. Therefore, there is no effect. If there were an effect, then you could begin speculating on the cause.

G: "How do you know it did not have predictive value in the past? Other than just extrapolating your current beliefs back?"

Astrology has no predictive value now. To establish the premise that astrology might have had predictive value in the past you would have to show some logic in the idea. There has to be some reason to connect a personality trend with birthdates. There has to be some reason that trend no longer shows up.

Your premise was that astrology developed in an area where #1) a large number of people could have had something in common #2) that was related to dates (seasons) #3) that affected personality in similar enough ways to make birthdates a predictive indicator for certain personality traits, and, #4) that no longer occurs today.

I tried to address this by pointing out that people were not living in similar seasonal conditions 2,000 years ago. They lived in variable climate areas. They ate different foods. They lived in wealth and in poverty, in crowds and in rural areas. What did they have in common that was related to dates?

You can leave that option open if you want to but I think it is so unlikely as to be ruled out. Just like the Earth is so unlikely to be flat that I have ruled that out. I think it's your turn to find some evidence, not speculation, that there is anything that meets the criteria for #1-4.

G: "Just because something has not been studied, does not mean it cannot be valid. That's why we do studies after all--to see if things are valid."

Astrology has been studied. It failed. Just as one wants to rule things in with research, at some point we need to rule things out as well.

G: "Harmonic sounds or waves? They weren't sound waves. One example given was the division of time into weeks--each week is seven times the day period, which makes it a harmonic of the day, and it very nearly evenly divides the year--which would make it a subharmonic of the year."

Weeks? That is just an arbitrary division I assume from Bible references or something. A year doesn't divide evenly into days, a lunar cycle doesn't divde evenly into a solar cycle. Harmonics are from the math of wave functions. A guitar string will vibrate and give a certain tone. A vibration wave that is 1/2 or a third etc., will interact a certain way with the vibrating string. The Tacoma Narrows Bridge known as Galloping Gertie collapsed because the wind speed matched the vibration length of the bridge in such a way as to get it vibrating rather than just swaying. That is my limited knowledge of harmonics.

Unless you have a more logical connection with these numbers and whatever Biorhythms are supposed to do (or predict), then they are just arbitrary numbers.

G: "We know that {"the premise that astrology developed from observations that personality traits were associated with seasons or weather by direct or indirect means (maternal hormones, food supplies, or whatever)"} this can happen in individuals. The question is, could the enviromental factors have been strong enough and consistent enough to have the effect be noticeable in groups."

And the answer is no, so the premise is not valid. In other words, if you want to evaluate astrology you would need to ask, "is it based on a valid premise, do birthdates have any predictive value?" No, and until you present some, any research that they do I rest my case on all I have previously said. Research has shown there is no relationship between birthdate and personality.

G: "That's {"The effect occurred either at the time of conception, during the fetal development period, or the time of birth and perhaps for a short period afterward "} just a restatement of "The effect occurred."

I was trying to break the elements down for an evaluation of the logic. X has to act on Y in Z way to get B result., like that.

B: "All this speculation depends on the underlying premise that time of year influences personality, for whatever reason. This is a false premise. There is no data to support this premise and there is a mountain of data that does not support it.

Then there is the second premise that the influence disappeared over the last 2,000+/- years. This is a false premise. In 2,000 years some populations have remained much the same, especially in rural Europe and rural Asia."

G: "We don't have any data from history--other than what Ptolemy left us, which supports it.

I wouldn't think anyone would disagree that our modern society is considerably different from the agrarian society of ancient Egypt. You're not seriously suggesting that those astrology studies were restricted to populations in rural Asia?"

The sample size and numbers of studies done on astrology are sufficient to rule out astrology. You don't have to restrict yourself to a population you think mirrors Ptolomy's days.

You could do that if you were not satisfied with the current research. I am more than satisfied with the current research.

And, by the way, traveling to 3rd world countries is an incredible way to view the past first hand. Coke and satellite TV have arrived in the farthest reaches of the populated parts of the planet, but in general, lifestyles can be unchanged despite the intrusions in many parts of the world.



<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-07-20 20:10 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-21, 12:59 AM
On 2002-07-20 20:00, beskeptical wrote:
G: "But I hope you have answered your question of whether nutrition could be relevant to "nature vs nurture"?"

Nutrition is relevant to nurture. I don't understand why you think I disagree with that.

I don't anymore, but I brought it up because, in your post 2002-07-19 13:05, you said "Of course nutrition plays a big role in fetal development. Duh! How is that relevant to the question of nurture vs nature?"


G: "There have been no studies that support {"nurture has a measurable impact, but not one that correlates with seasons, nor climate."}, one way or the other, to my knowledge."

Hundreds of studies have looked for correlations between birth dates and anything in common that people born on the same dates might have. I cited the SkepDic which had other citations and the 20 year, 40,000 Europeans study by the French researchers. Once you have repeatable studies with large sample sizes, you can at some point say the results are in. Birthdates do not correlate with any personality traits.

You are aware that I'm not claiming that birthdates correlate with personality? I'm not even claiming that conception times correlate--I'm only suggesting that it's possible that they once did.


So whether seasons, climate, fetal conditions, etc can affect one's personality or not is irrelevant.

I fail to see why that would be irrelevant.


There are no correlations with birthdates, nor conception dates. If there were an effect it would have shown up in at least some of the studies done.

Actually, my argument is that they would not have shown up. I think I make that clear.


Your premise was that astrology developed in an area where #1) a large number of people could have had something in common #2) that was related to dates (seasons) #3) that affected personality in similar enough ways to make birthdates a predictive indicator for certain personality traits, and, #4) that no longer occurs today.

I tried to address this by pointing out that people were not living in similar seasonal conditions 2,000 years ago.

Ptolemy, the "father of astrology," lived on the Nile, where a large number of people also lived(1). The climate and the flooding of the Nile (important to food growing) was immensely predictable and regular(2), one of the original reasons for the development of calendars. We're still studying (3), so I'm not sure I'd want to slam the door on that just yet. There is no modern counterpart to that ancient society(4). That seems to satisfy your 4 criteria.


They lived in variable climate areas. They ate different foods. They lived in wealth and in poverty, in crowds and in rural areas. What did they have in common that was related to dates?

Figs.


You can leave that option open if you want to but I think it is so unlikely as to be ruled out. Just like the Earth is so unlikely to be flat that I have ruled that out. I think it's your turn to find some evidence, not speculation, that there is anything that meets the criteria for #1-4.

We're only missing strong support for number 3, but there is some support for it.


That is my limited knowledge of harmonics.

Unless you have a more logical connection with these numbers and whatever Biorhythms are supposed to do (or predict), then they are just arbitrary numbers.

But they weren't just arbitrary numbers! That would be like taking A above middle C, and then saying 220hz (half its frequency) is an arbitrary number. Even the notes on a piano are compromises between mathematical precision and harmony--not all of them are exact harmonics, they're just the most convenient ones.


The question is, could the enviromental factors have been strong enough and consistent enough to have the effect be noticeable in groups."

And the answer is no, so the premise is not valid. In other words, if you want to evaluate astrology you would need to ask, "is it based on a valid premise, do birthdates have any predictive value?" No, and until you present some, any research that they do I rest my case on all I have previously said. Research has shown there is no relationship between birthdate and personality.

That there is no relationship between birthdate and personality is my claim also, even if my speculation is correct. I've even pointed out that modern effects would probably have destroyed any correlation that ever did exist. So I agree with you there--but that does not detract from the theory at all.

<font size=-1>[Nile info]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-07-20 21:05 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Jul-21, 08:09 AM
[quote]
On 2002-07-20 20:59, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
[quote]
On 2002-07-20 20:00, beskeptical wrote:

G:"I don't anymore, but I brought it up because, in your post 2002-07-19 13:05, you said "Of course nutrition plays a big role in fetal development. Duh! How is that relevant to the question of nurture vs nature?"

Yes, yes, we have this communication solved. Except, nutrition is relevant to the question of nurture vs nature if you are trying to establish that there is any role for nutrition. I understood that as a given. I had tried to make 'vs' in bold font but it didn't stand out enough. I think we're clear here but read on.

G: "You are aware that I'm not claiming that birthdates correlate with personality? I'm not even claiming that conception times correlate--I'm only suggesting that it's possible that they once did."

Yes, I thought the main issue of our discussion was me writing off astrology as forever doomed to the position of pseudoscience and not whether or not it was already proven. And I am saying that it is so unlikely that they ever did correlate that for all intents and purposes it is not possible.

Language is a problem in this discourse because it too easily becomes the target of the attack (see, even putting this sentence down is tricky- you might 'attack' on the grounds that no 'attack' occurred).

B: "So whether seasons, climate, fetal conditions, etc can affect one's personality or not is irrelevant."

G: "I fail to see why that would be irrelevant."

If you have already shown that there is no measurable effect: -Birthdates do not correlate with personality traits- :, then if climate or seasons affect one's personality, it could only affect individuals and not groups. So if being born in April made me smart, it didn't make enough people smart to be able to say people born in April are more likely to be smart. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif

G: "Ptolemy, the "father of astrology," lived on the Nile, where a large number of people also lived(1). The climate and the flooding of the Nile (important to food growing) was immensely predictable and regular(2), one of the original reasons for the development of calendars. We're still studying (3), so I'm not sure I'd want to slam the door on that just yet. There is no modern counterpart to that ancient society(4). That seems to satisfy your 4 criteria."

Give me a little time to address this. I think you have a lot of facts wrong here.

B: "They lived in variable climate areas. They ate different foods. They lived in wealth and in poverty, in crowds and in rural areas. What did they have in common that was related to dates?"

G: "Figs."

Cute. But, seriously Grapes... Are you saying not enough people eat figs today to have seasonal personality traits that are dependent on figs effects in utero but that could have happened 2,000 years ago? And you think that is less far fetched than say, the Earth is flat? (You may substitute any word/s you want for figs.)

B: "Your premise was that astrology developed in an area where #1) a large number of people could have had something in common #2) that was related to dates (seasons) #3) that affected personality in similar enough ways to make birthdates a predictive indicator for certain personality traits, and, #4) that no longer occurs today."

G:"We're only missing strong support for number 3, but there is some support for it."

You have provided no basis other than speculation that #1,2,4 occur together. In other words, what is this seasonal thing that no longer occurs?

#3 is the whole premise underlying astrology, and just what support other than speculation do you have?

Bear with me on this analogy. It is not meant to be sarcastic. You can speculate that there are people sending you messages and you need a tin foil hat to protect yourself. (My apologies to any tin foil users out there.) You could say it is scientifically possible. The studies haven't been done. As you tell yourself this you could congratulate yourself for being so openminded.

Then you could run tests that failed to detect any incoming messages. You might take the hat off but continue to believe it is scientifically possible, afterall, you are very openminded. Anything is possible.

My questions are, "Is this a realistic position to take?"; "Are you really as open minded as you believe?"; and, "Is it beneficial to take this position?".

My answers are, "No,no, and, no."

It isn't realistic to only look for science to rule in possibilities and to never rule any out. Both are equally important in scientific inquirey.

Being open minded is always going to be a matter of degree. To believeanything is possible, one would have to be able to say that's possible to everything. No one is that lost in space, at least I don't think anyone is. Is the Earth flat? Can I defy gravity with brain waves? There are going to be some questions that get a 'no' answer. The questions might have to get more far fetched than these examples but everyone will have 'no' answers to some questions. So from my point of view, saying one is so open minded they're not going to rule anything out, is unlikely to really be true. So what is the point? Why draw the line in an unrealistic place. History has many examples of scientists who drew the line closer than they should have. But that should not deter us from discarding pseudoscience, myths, and things of this nature unless there is some reason to accept these things.

Is it beneficial to be open to all possibilities? Scientific inquirey requires resources, (energy, time, money, etc.) If one takes the position that anything is possible, how can you direct your resources in an effective way? Taking that one step further, how does science move forward in a completely undirected way?

It doesn't. To formulate an hypothesis you have to have at least a twinkling of a rationale to support it. I understand all the discussion about, maybe this could have happened, maybe that could have happened but other than wild speculation on incredibly unlikely possibilities, how does speculating about things which there is no evidence for lead to better scientific inquirey?

G: "That there is no relationship between birthdate and personality is my claim also, even if my speculation is correct. I've even pointed out that modern effects would probably have destroyed any correlation that ever did exist. So I agree with you there--but that does not detract from the theory at all."

I think I have failed to address one issue here and that is the liklihood of # 1,2 and 4 that we discussed earlier. I think I can address that and the above comment when I get back to you on the historical facts you cited. I think you're describing an oversimplified view of the world 2,000 years ago. I will defer until I have a few more minutes to research things.


As to the harmonics:

G: "But they weren't just arbitrary numbers! That would be like taking A above middle C, and then saying 220hz (half its frequency) is an arbitrary number. Even the notes on a piano are compromises between mathematical precision and harmony--not all of them are exact harmonics, they're just the most convenient ones."

When I said sound waves you said something about days and years dividing into harmonic equivilencies.

I don't have a clue what you are talking about. If you think there is something to Biorhythms you will have to explain to me why you think there would have been any evolutionary pressure for humans to have developed these rhythms. I'm sorry, I still say they are arbtrary numbers that have no meaning other than the meaning assigned by the persons who came up with the idea.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-21, 05:27 PM
On 2002-07-21 04:09, beskeptical wrote:
If you have already shown that there is no measurable effect: -Birthdates do not correlate with personality traits- :, then if climate or seasons affect one's personality, it could only affect individuals and not groups. So if being born in April made me smart, it didn't make enough people smart to be able to say people born in April are more likely to be smart.

I'm going to call you on this one--the logic doesn't follow. If something affects individuals, then it will affect groups. You have it backwards--the studies have shown that the groups that the study has studied aren't affected--that doesn't mean that there is nothing that affects individuals. Some factor could have been missed in the studies. Happens all the time, even in epidemiology I'm sure.


G: "Ptolemy, the "father of astrology," lived on the Nile, where a large number of people also lived(1). The climate and the flooding of the Nile (important to food growing) was immensely predictable and regular(2), one of the original reasons for the development of calendars. We're still studying (3), so I'm not sure I'd want to slam the door on that just yet. There is no modern counterpart to that ancient society(4). That seems to satisfy your 4 criteria."

Give me a little time to address this. I think you have a lot of facts wrong here.

There aren't a lot of facts there--and the only one I see you have a chance of disputing is (4), the modern counterpart thing--but I'm pretty sure if they do exist, they haven't been included in the astrology studies anyway. I'll accept that as a concession for the time being. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif


You have provided no basis other than speculation that #1,2,4 occur together. In other words, what is this seasonal thing that no longer occurs?

O no, it occurs, but it's effect is no longer correlated with the seasons. Nutrition, weather, daylight length, floods, water supply.

And once you see an effect that agrees with a mechanism, the explanation tends to get elaborate--see, for example, the planetary epicycles of Ptolemy (same guy!).


Is it beneficial to be open to all possibilities? Scientific inquirey requires resources, (energy, time, money, etc.) If one takes the position that anything is possible, how can you direct your resources in an effective way? Taking that one step further, how does science move forward in a completely undirected way?

Sure. But I am convinced that science does not move forward in a directed way, and is incapable of doing so.


It doesn't. To formulate an hypothesis you have to have at least a twinkling of a rationale to support it. I understand all the discussion about, maybe this could have happened, maybe that could have happened but other than wild speculation on incredibly unlikely possibilities, how does speculating about things which there is no evidence for lead to better scientific inquirey?

I disagree that this is an example of where we have no shread of evidence to support it. The nutritional evidence, prenatal care studies, SAD, all that constitutes at the very minimum a twinkling, doesn't it?


As to the harmonics:

G: "But they weren't just arbitrary numbers! That would be like taking A above middle C, and then saying 220hz (half its frequency) is an arbitrary number. Even the notes on a piano are compromises between mathematical precision and harmony--not all of them are exact harmonics, they're just the most convenient ones."

When I said sound waves you said something about days and years dividing into harmonic equivilencies.

I don't have a clue what you are talking about. If you think there is something to Biorhythms you will have to explain to me why you think there would have been any evolutionary pressure for humans to have developed these rhythms. I'm sorry, I still say they are arbtrary numbers that have no meaning other than the meaning assigned by the persons who came up with the idea.


What is the evolutionary pressure to develop the week? I think you dismissed that one as biblical in origin, but that is just changing the question (unless you are claiming that the week is divinely inspired, in which case I'm going to counter with Biorhytms being established by the hand of God--no evolutionary pressure necessary). The week is a period that is approximately a harmonic of the month, and it is a subharmonic of the day.

Biorhythms were first extablished as a more or less extension of the idea of the menstrual cycle. But they said they had evidence to back them up--even Freud was impressed, I think. My numbers had nothing to do with psychological data--they were just calculations of harmonics and subharmonics. You got to admit that it is a pretty good coincidence that the closest matches to harmonics also turned out to be the Biorhythm periods?

2002-Jul-21, 08:09 PM

2002-Jul-21, 08:11 PM
test from Baker Co. Lib Sun noon

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-21, 08:21 PM
You made it HUb'! Is that a GUI interface at that library?

You...you're...different

Yul
2002-Jul-21, 10:49 PM
The very accuracy of astrology bespeaks of the truth of Geocentricity. The stars impel, but they do not compel.Depending on our deeds or misdeeds, God can overrule these potent stellar and
planetary influences.Although much of the ancient astrological traditions
have gone lost, valuable information can still be
gleaned from the Houses, transits, conjuctions,
progressions, squares, oppositions, sextiles and trines of
one's birthchart: "Let the astrologers, stargazers and
fortune tellers stand up and tell you something (Isaiah 47)
- they can tell you something, but not everything!" (Midrash).

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-22, 12:05 AM
On 2002-07-21 18:49, Yul wrote:
The very accuracy of astrology bespeaks of the truth of Geocentricity.

I'm with you up to there. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

beskeptical
2002-Jul-23, 03:36 AM
[quote]
On 2002-07-21 13:27, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
[quote]
On 2002-07-21 04:09, beskeptical wrote:

G:"I'm going to call you on this one--the logic doesn't follow. If something affects individuals, then it will affect groups."

Grapes, my friend, you are still not connecting the dots here. The groups we are talking about are people born on the same day, or at least the same time of year. If something affects an individual, but it doesn't show up in any greater amount when you look at a large groups of people born near the same time of year, then it's effect is not significant as far as astrology is concerned.

I could fall and injure myself. That certainly affected me, but that doesn't connect the fall with my birthdate. Unless more people born on my birthday fall than people born on other birthdays.

G: "You have it backwards--the studies have shown that the groups that the study has studied aren't affected--that doesn't mean that there is nothing that affects individuals. Some factor could have been missed in the studies. Happens all the time, even in epidemiology I'm sure."

G: "There is no modern counterpart to that ancient society."

There will always be subtle differences between people, whether you look at two groups today or a group now and an historical group. The larger the population is in the study, the more likely the results are to be reliable. To rule out other variables you look at multiple studies with large sample sizes and adequate controls.

G: There aren't a lot of facts there--and the only one I see you have a chance of disputing is (4), the modern counterpart thing--but I'm pretty sure if they do exist, they haven't been included in the astrology studies anyway. I'll accept that as a concession for the time being. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

G: "Ptolemy, the "father of astrology," lived on the Nile, where a large number of people also lived."

The facts I am referring to are in regards to the history of astrology. Astrology developed over a very long period of time. I find in multiple texts that describe its formal beginnings with the Babylonians. And, interestingly enough, the main focus wasn't personality, it was what you were destined to be and what events were destined to be.

I don't want to get into a discussion about history. However, if you want to consider Ptolemy's writings as THE book of astrology then we should also find evidence of his careful observations of people on which he based this writing.

As I looked further into this matter, it became clear that the scientists of that day made incredibly careful observations of the sky. But they were not aware of how to systematically observe people. So unless you can find some historical evidence that people were ever systematically observed in conjunction /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif with the stars and planets, it is not good science to accept the data.

G: "O no, it occurs, but it's effect is no longer correlated with the seasons. Nutrition, weather, daylight length, floods, water supply."

You haven't shown that all Egyptians ate the same diet. You haven't shown that any seasonal food was eaten then and isn't eaten today (or that any food is differently prepared today). You haven't shown that something affected personality and was seasonal. What foods affect personality today? Maybe an hallucinogen. Which astrology prediction fits that, how would that affect personality for one's lifetime?

People live at all latitudes today except extreme north and south. They don't all move during their lifetimes.

Sufficient studies have been done to rule out the hypothesis that astrology was originally based on a true phenomonon that no longer exists.

If you find the thing that existed then, that doesn't exist now, I will address whether it could be tested today.

G: "And once you see an effect that agrees with a mechanism, the explanation tends to get elaborate--see, for example, the planetary epicycles of Ptolemy (same guy!)."

I understand what you are saying here and if there were an observed effect, there would be no issue. But on what historical evidence do you conclude Ptolemy systematically observed people?

G: "I disagree that this is an example of where we have no shread of evidence to support it. The nutritional evidence, prenatal care studies, SAD, all that constitutes at the very minimum a twinkling, doesn't it?"

No, sorry. You haven't provided any evidence that any of these things affect people in any relation to birthday. You have only speculated that it is possible. I could speculate that the Sun will become a brown dwarf star tomorrow by some mechanism we don't yet understand. I can speculate anything, that isn't a useful way to think.

If you have an effect, you can speculate as to cause and then test. If you have no effect, all that speculating is certainly not going to be fruitful.

G: "Sure. But I am convinced that science does not move forward in a directed way, and is incapable of doing so."

When I say 'in a directed way' I am talking about a logical progression of research rather than a willy-nilly direction. Results might send you in another direction, but you don't just go looking for that thing that might turn the Sun into a brown dwarf tomorrow unless there is something suggesting you should.

If I were to spend time looking into the roots of astrology, there is a lot of evidence that it did not grow out of careful observations of people. There is, however, lots of evidence that the sky was important to people of that time, that they believed the sky foretold the future, and that astrology grew from events related to beliefs such as these. That would get me started in a more promising direction.

Back to the question of 'is it possible'. As I said before, I think the question of astrology has been addressed and it will not turn out to have had any basis that no longer exists. I think the lack of evidence of careful observations of people in any historical writing, despite having meticulous records that many cultures studied the movement of the stars, is evidence for astrology to have been invented to meet other psychological needs of the time.


G: "What is the evolutionary pressure to develop the week? I think you dismissed that one as biblical in origin, but that is just changing the question (unless you are claiming that the week is divinely inspired, in which case I'm going to counter with Biorhytms being established by the hand of God--no evolutionary pressure necessary)."

I still really don't have a clue what you are talking about.

G: "...even Freud was impressed, I think."

I'm not particularly impressed with Freud.

G: "You got to admit that it is a pretty good coincidence that the closest matches to harmonics also turned out to be the Biorhythm periods?"

Whatever coincidence you think is significant there, I don't see it, sorry.

Better yet, let's just agree to disagree on this one. Another time perhaps.

_________________
For the record, that's Beskeptigal.



<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-07-22 23:44 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-23, 04:53 AM
On 2002-07-22 23:36, beskeptical wrote:
Sufficient studies have been done to rule out the hypothesis that astrology was originally based on a true phenomonon that no longer exists.

No such study exists.


When I say 'in a directed way' I am talking about a logical progression of research rather than a willy-nilly direction. Results might send you in another direction, but you don't just go looking for that thing that might turn the Sun into a brown dwarf tomorrow unless there is something suggesting you should.

Some people do, and successful ones at that. On the other hand, there was plenty of "something" that suggested I should look into this...


I still really don't have a clue what you are talking about.

I'll accept that.


Better yet, let's just agree to disagree on this one. Another time perhaps.

And that. Agreed then.

The SollyLama
2002-Jul-26, 04:19 PM
A key point astrologers seem to glance over is how they have adapted their belief system to accomodate new scientific information. As an example, Pluto wasn't discovered until this century. Other planets weren't discovered until the past few centuries. How can astrology explain away the planets having impacted everyone's lives (predictably, no less) when they weren't even aware of the total number of planets. How can someone talking to an astrologer today be affected by the position of a certain planet when just a hundred years ago NO ONE was affected by the planet, because astrologers didn't know it was there to lay blame on?
Astronomy will now have to adapt to the findings of planets discovered around other stars. Do these planets affect us? Are the occupants of these planets (astrologers usually fall into the UFO/Angel believer group as well- so why not assume aliens too) affected by our planets, or just their own?
Why aren't stars as important as planets? They are much more massive, and we have known of their existance from the first time a human looked up at night. Planets are pretty much just the junk left over from star formation, so why aren't we affected far more by all the stars than by the crumbs left over from making them?
You can be as polite and politically correct as you want, but I'll pull no punches in calling astrology and it's believers DUMB. Stupid, asinine, delusional, desperate to not be responsible for their own failings (Mars wasn't in ascension when I took my driver's test). Sounds alot like every religion ever to darken our history with superstition.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-26, 05:14 PM
On 2002-07-26 12:19, The SollyLama wrote:
You can be as polite and politically correct as you want, but I'll pull no punches in calling astrology and it's believers DUMB. Stupid, asinine, delusional, desperate to not be responsible for their own failings (Mars wasn't in ascension when I took my driver's test). Sounds alot like every religion ever to darken our history with superstition.


As long as we're being polite, I'd just as soon we left off talking about your religion.

traztx
2002-Jul-26, 06:35 PM
On 2002-07-26 12:19, The SollyLama wrote:
A key point astrologers seem to glance over is how they have adapted their belief system to accomodate new scientific information. As an example, Pluto wasn't discovered until this century. Other planets weren't discovered until the past few centuries. How can astrology explain away the planets having impacted everyone's lives (predictably, no less) when they weren't even aware of the total number of planets. How can someone talking to an astrologer today be affected by the position of a certain planet when just a hundred years ago NO ONE was affected by the planet, because astrologers didn't know it was there to lay blame on?
Astronomy will now have to adapt to the findings of planets discovered around other stars. Do these planets affect us? Are the occupants of these planets (astrologers usually fall into the UFO/Angel believer group as well- so why not assume aliens too) affected by our planets, or just their own?
Why aren't stars as important as planets? They are much more massive, and we have known of their existance from the first time a human looked up at night. Planets are pretty much just the junk left over from star formation, so why aren't we affected far more by all the stars than by the crumbs left over from making them?


Well a clock doesn't make you go to a meeting. The clock does not orient of accelerate you in any direction. But people conforming to a common clock system benefit from it by being able to easily get together for a meeting.

Another example: A restaurant hires part-time workers to increase coverage at around noon each day. Only by the convention that most people have a meal at that time is this justified.

Astrology seems to have similar properties of a syncronizing convention. If enough people conform to this convention, then their activities are syncronized in support of the system.

Here's how people can benefit from it: Let's say you have many personality traits, but by believing in astrology, you have confidence in those traits that match your star sign. This confidence results in a development of those same traits. Finding a partner with compatible traits is then a matter of seeking out people of compatible signs who have conformed to those signs.

As for me... I'm too non-conformist to benefit from astrology. I have trouble enough just getting to a meeting on time! /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif
--Tommy

informant
2002-Jul-26, 06:44 PM
The SollyLama wrote:
You can be as polite and politically correct as you want, but I'll pull no punches in calling astrology and it's believers DUMB. Stupid, asinine, delusional, desperate to not be responsible for their own failings (Mars wasn't in ascension when I took my driver's test).

I think it isn't that simple. Believing in astrology is a bit like trusting politicians. It's hard to judge it in an objective, uncontroversial way, because the subject itself is very slippery.
Curiously enough, in ancient times astrology was used mostly by politicians, who looked for it as a way to predict the future (E.g.: "Should I go to war with our neighbours now or next week?", "Is my concubine out to poison me?", "Should I favor priests, or will that give them too much power?"...)
Nowadays, however, I think most people look at astrology as a way to know a person's character, or to get advice on how to run their everyday lives. So astrology today has a similar part in most people's lives as psychology. It's a kind of psychology, in fact. Whether it's scientifically valid is a different issue that I'm not trying to get into.
My point is that even mainstream, "scientific" psychology, is a slippery matter, and that's because it implies describing people's character, and their behavior. Describing people's character, or people's behavior, is not an easy thing to do.
There's often a lot of subjectivity involved in it --- which means that it's easy to play with the ambiguities, and create sophistries that you have a hard time disproving, but, under a close inspection, add nothing to what you already know.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: informant on 2002-07-26 14:46 ]</font>

honestmonkey
2002-Jul-26, 08:32 PM
On 2002-07-21 18:49, Yul wrote:
The stars impel, but they do not compel. Depending on our deeds or misdeeds, God can overrule these potent stellar and
planetary influences.


Oops! Just by using the above, if taken to be correct, it means that Astrology can not predict anything!

Why? Any predictive power is overruled by a possible intervention from God. An astologer can say anything at all and if it doesn't work out, well, then, God must have mucked around with things.

So what good is it?

Answer: none.

beskeptical
2002-Jul-27, 02:29 AM
On 2002-07-26 14:35, traztx wrote:
Astrology seems to have similar properties of a syncronizing convention. If enough people conform to this convention, then their activities are syncronized in support of the system.

Here's how people can benefit from it: Let's say you have many personality traits, but by believing in astrology, you have confidence in those traits that match your star sign. This confidence results in a development of those same traits. Finding a partner with compatible traits is then a matter of seeking out people of compatible signs who have conformed to those signs.
--Tommy


What traits? Mars is red so Aires are warlike? Where is this book of knowledge? Everybody just makes the stuff up. Then the next guy reinterprets it and adds to it and so on and so on. It amounts to a bunch of oversimplified stereotypes. People are just way more complex than that.

One famous experiment was done by those two French guys I mentioned earlier. One of them gave the same horoscope to everyone in a class but the students only saw their own. He polled the students and asked who agreed with their horoscope. About 80% agreed. Then he showed them they all had the same one. And for the excuse conjecturers, no, they weren't born on the same day.

If one had to look at a chart to see if they were compatable with a prospective partner, I'd give that relationship about a 10% chance of surviving. (10% because maybe they have belief in nonsense in common.) /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_rolleyes.gif

Kaptain K
2002-Jul-27, 11:04 AM
Mars is red so Aires are warlike?
Dang, I really do hate to nit-pick but; Mars is the Roman equivalent of the Greek Ares. Aires is a constellation known in English as "the Ram".

beskeptical
2002-Jul-27, 07:40 PM
On 2002-07-27 07:04, Kaptain K wrote:

Mars is red so Aires are warlike?
Dang, I really do hate to nit-pick but; Mars is the Roman equivalent of the Greek Ares. Aires is a constellation known in English as "the Ram".



I know. I was trying to be as ridiculous as possible.

FP
2002-Jul-27, 10:06 PM
Okay, I'm a newbie. I went to the FAQ to see how to make italics, and my whole post disappeared. Too bad, too. It was a very learned discourse on harmonics and the scientific method (OK, so it was probably a good thing it went away into the non-existant ether.)

The Reader's Digest version is that as I understand science, any hypothesis must be testable. This can be done in a lab by carefully controlled experiments or by collected data in the field as bilogists, archiologists, and others do. I can't see any way to test Grapes of Wrath's ideas. Until that happens, it is just a very interesting speculation. It says nothing one way or the other about the validity either now or in the past because it can't be tested. Therefore, beskeptical is still right when he says

I can guarantee you that any statistical evidence for astrology is either bad science or bad interpretation of coincidences.

Grapes of Wrath has not been able to show with any evidence that this is wrong. At some point, the earth is an oblate spheriod!:)

I don't think that it is enough to show that something could have happened in discussions of this sort. You really have to have some evedence.

[edited to rewrite lost post]


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: FP on 2002-07-27 18:26 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: FP on 2002-07-27 18:28 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Jul-28, 05:50 AM
On 2002-07-27 18:06, FP wrote:
Okay, I'm a newbie. I went to the FAQ to see how to make italics, and my whole post disappeared. Too bad, too. It was a very learned discourse on harmonics and the scientific method (OK, so it was probably a good thing it went away into the non-existant ether.)

The Reader's Digest version is that as I understand science, any hypothesis must be testable. This can be done in a lab by carefully controlled experiments or by collected data in the field as bilogists, archiologists, and others do. I can't see any way to test Grapes of Wrath's ideas. Until that happens, it is just a very interesting speculation. It says nothing one way or the other about the validity either now or in the past because it can't be tested. Therefore, beskeptical is still right when he says

I can guarantee you that any statistical evidence for astrology is either bad science or bad interpretation of coincidences.

Grapes of Wrath has not been able to show with any evidence that this is wrong. At some point, the earth is an oblate spheriod!:)

I don't think that it is enough to show that something could have happened in discussions of this sort. You really have to have some evedence.

[edited to rewrite lost post]


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: FP on 2002-07-27 18:26 ]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: FP on 2002-07-27 18:28 ]</font>


Alright, a new person on my side. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif Welcome to the BABB FP!

One thing a few of us less than computer masters do is copy our posts to the clipboard before posting. Especially if it is long. Then if it is lost you can paste it back.

You can also delete the 'edited' tag if you edit twice, then it only shows up once.

If you hit the answer with quote option the codes below will appear.

italics
bold
this is not a real sitefor a web link

Those are the main codes I had to figure out. I'm definitely not an experienced chatter.

Oh ya, everyone seems to think I'm a guy so I'm getting used to it but...

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-28, 04:04 PM
On 2002-07-27 18:06, FP wrote:
I don't think that it is enough to show that something could have happened in discussions of this sort.

Thank you. That was all I was trying to do.

If you ever have time to re-enter your learned discourse on harmonics, I'd be very interested in reviewing it. Or perhaps we can take it to email.

FP
2002-Jul-28, 05:02 PM
Ah, beskeptiGAL! now I get it. Deepest apologies. No doubt one of the english langauges greatest failings is a pronoun for use when gender is unknown. I don't really want to be an "it."

G o W, I figured that was all you were trying to do, and is is interesting speculation, but I can't see it as science.

I think that in ancient times, just as now, it was very hard to make a living looking up. So some guys (in those days guys for sure) who enjoyed the stars got together and figured out a way to get a cushy job with the king. "Verily, your Highness, the stars fortell a great harvest this year!" Since they were smart (after all, they were astronomers of a sort) they made predictions which had a high liklihood of sucess. "Your Highness, the alignment of the stars tells me the Yankees will be in the World Series this year!" Before long the astologers were as important at court as brown-nosing knights and court jesters. The rest is history (but not, I'm afraid, science.)

FP
2002-Jul-28, 05:11 PM
GoW, I confess that my knowledge of harmonics is limited to what I learned from my father who was a musician, and gleaned from his music theory textbooks. There are natural harmonics which are derived from nature (i.e., Pythagoras's whole number ratios of a vibrating string or air column) and man made compromises such as the even-tempered scale developed in the late 17th and early 18th centuries so that songs in different keys could be played without re-tuning. The only whole number ratio in the even-tempered scale is the octave (C to the C above it, and so on.)

My point was going to be that to be a natural harmonic as I understand them, it must involve whole number ratios. Otherwise they are man made and may be useful but can't explain any natural phenomina (sp?). I may be totally in left field, but it makes sense this way to me.

Donnie B.
2002-Jul-28, 05:45 PM
Have you ever heard music played on instruments that were tuned to a precise key, rather than equally-tempered?

I have heard a number of pipe organs tuned to specific keys (this was the norm a few centuries ago). They sound wonderful, incredibly sweet and melodious, when played in the proper key. But play something that's six keys away, and they sound awful. (There's a notorious case of this occurring during the dedication of a large pipe organ at Oberlin some years back.)

The difference is quite astonishing, if your ear is used to equally-tempered tuning. If you've never heard it, you should seek out a good organ -- be sure it's one that is either truly old (with its original temper retained), or a modern instrument that uses an old-style tuning. You might even be able to talk the organist into giving a demonstration of the tuning, by playing a passage in the "right" key, then transposing it to the "wrong" one.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-28, 06:51 PM
On 2002-07-28 13:02, FP wrote:
I think that in ancient times, just as now, it was very hard to make a living looking up. So some guys (in those days guys for sure) who enjoyed the stars got together and figured out a way to get a cushy job with the king. "Verily, your Highness, the stars fortell a great harvest this year!" Since they were smart (after all, they were astronomers of a sort) they made predictions which had a high liklihood of sucess. "Your Highness, the alignment of the stars tells me the Yankees will be in the World Series this year!" Before long the astologers were as important at court as brown-nosing knights and court jesters.

interesting speculation, but I can't see it as science.

/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif



On 2002-07-28 13:11, FP wrote:
GoW, I confess that my knowledge of harmonics is limited to what I learned from my father who was a musician, and gleaned from his music theory textbooks.

Dang, I was looking forward to a learned discourse.


My point was going to be that to be a natural harmonic as I understand them, it must involve whole number ratios. Otherwise they are man made and may be useful but can't explain any natural phenomina (sp?). I may be totally in left field, but it makes sense this way to me.

You can take that music analogy further, though. Even-tempered scales are "close enough" for human ears. Perhaps biological rhythms are "close enough" for human purposes.

Actually, there is no doubt about this--I think beskeptical will even back me up on this one. Circadian ("about a day") rhythms in the human body are not exactly one day in most persons, but they are "close enough," and they can be reset by various environmental factors--for example, your blahblahblah cycle may be 24 hours and 13 minutes long naturally, but that first cup of coffee in the morning reboots your system and establishes a new cycle, and your high and lows occur at approx. the same time every day--"forcing" it into an exact 24 cycle.

A 28 day emotional cycle may have developed in the human body since a whole number of cycles very nearly approximates an Earth year (off by 1.25 days). Of course, we do see a physical cycle in the female menstrual cycle--which has many personal and environmental influences.

<font size=-1>[Fixed quote, abled smilies]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-07-29 06:08 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Jul-29, 06:56 AM
On 2002-07-28 14:51, GrapesOfWrath wrote:

You can take that music analogy further, though. Even-tempered scales are "close enough" for human ears. Perhaps biological rhythms are "close enough" for human purposes.

Actually, there is no doubt about this--I think beskeptical will even back me up on this one. Circadian ("about a day") rhythms in the human body are not exactly one day in most persons, but they are "close enough," and they can be reset by various environmental factors--for example, your blahblahblah cycle may be 24 hours and 13 minutes long naturally, but that first cup of coffee in the morning reboots your system and establishes a new cycle, and your high and lows occur at approx. the same time every day--"forcing" it into an exact 24 cycle.

A 28 day emotional cycle may have developed in the human body since a whole number of cycles very nearly approximates an Earth year (off by 1.25 days). Of course, we do see a physical cycle in the female menstrual cycle--which has many personal and environmental influences.


Coffee and the electric light, and many other things probably affected the 24 hour circadian rhythm. Also, travel because we can change time zones very quickly. Body chemistry changes throughout the day, the year, the menstrual cycle, and throughout life as well. The chemicals (mainly hormones and neurotransmitters) and their effects have been studied though we have a lot more to learn.

I don't believe it has ever been concluded that the human menstrual cycle and any physical cycles of our planet are related. Some species clearly have a lunar coordinated reproductive cycle, mostly those that use the light of the Moon for getting together. But it would be a false assumption to say the menstrual cycle was on average 28 days due to a Lunar effect. It is possible but it could just as easily be a coincidence.

There are lots of possibilities here. But I can't see any place to jump from biological rhythms to 'harmonics'.

We are bipeds but other than it's a successful way to walk and free up your hands, I don't consider 2 to have any magical significance. Certain sounds are prettier to one's conscious mind, I see no case made to connect such numbers any further.

I see no reason to rule such a relationship out at this point, mind you, but I see no reason to pursue it in a line of inquirey either.

Peter B
2002-Jul-29, 07:30 AM
As far as checking the veracity of astrology is concerned, see what you can find out about an Australian fellow called Geoffrey Dean. He did extensive (and I mean EXTENSIVE) work checking the accuracy of various astrological claims (such as the Mars effect), and came to the conclusion that there was nothing to it.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Jul-29, 10:14 AM
On 2002-07-29 02:56, beskeptical wrote:
I see no reason to rule such a relationship out at this point, mind you,
Woohoo!

but I see no reason to pursue it in a line of inquirey either.

I won't try to force you again. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

<font size=-1>[Abled smilies. And, Peter B, who are you talking to?]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-07-29 06:16 ]</font>

traztx
2002-Jul-29, 02:45 PM
On 2002-07-26 22:29, beskeptical wrote:


On 2002-07-26 14:35, traztx wrote:
Astrology seems to have similar properties of a syncronizing convention. If enough people conform to this convention, then their activities are syncronized in support of the system.

Here's how people can benefit from it: Let's say you have many personality traits, but by believing in astrology, you have confidence in those traits that match your star sign. This confidence results in a development of those same traits. Finding a partner with compatible traits is then a matter of seeking out people of compatible signs who have conformed to those signs.
--Tommy


What traits?


Well, in the example above, perhaps they are rating their partners on traits such as aggressiveness, confidence, sensuality, punctuality, etc.



On 2002-07-26 22:29, beskeptical also wrote:
Mars is red so Aires are warlike? Where is this book of knowledge? Everybody just makes the stuff up. Then the next guy reinterprets it and adds to it and so on and so on. It amounts to a bunch of oversimplified stereotypes. People are just way more complex than that.


I don't know where it all originated. My speculation is that it is as arbitrary as stating that the lunch menu should begin at 10:30am. There is no scientific basis for it. Just a convention for those who wish to live by it.



On 2002-07-26 22:29, beskeptical also also wrote:
One famous experiment was done by those two French guys I mentioned earlier. One of them gave the same horoscope to everyone in a class but the students only saw their own. He polled the students and asked who agreed with their horoscope. About 80% agreed. Then he showed them they all had the same one. And for the excuse conjecturers, no, they weren't born on the same day.


Good point and I think that is why horoscopes are so popular. They are written in a generalized manner to fit to most people. Once, my horoscope told me I should watch out for a green van and I had to laugh, imagining all the people with my sign watching out for green vans all day.



On 2002-07-26 22:29, beskeptical also also wrote:
If one had to look at a chart to see if they were compatable with a prospective partner, I'd give that relationship about a 10% chance of surviving. (10% because maybe they have belief in nonsense in common.) /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_rolleyes.gif


Well if they have to look it up, then I doubt they were deep enough into the belief system to have conformed much to it.
--Tommy

beskeptical
2002-Jul-29, 06:56 PM
On 2002-07-29 10:45, traztx wrote:
traztx: "Here's how people can benefit from it: Let's say you have many personality traits, but by believing in astrology, you have confidence in those traits that match your star sign --Tommy..."

On 2002-07-26 22:29, beskeptical wrote:
Beskep: "What traits?"

On 2002-07-26 14:35, traztx wrote:
"Well, in the example above, perhaps they are rating their partners on traits such as aggressiveness, confidence, sensuality, punctuality, etc....
...Just a convention for those who wish to live by it..."


I didn't mean what kind of traits. I meant what traits? Is there some agreement among astrologers about what these traits are beyond a few stereotypes? Do they use a particular text with any regularity? Do the accepted reference texts agree? Taurus is stubborn. What is that? The person's overall personality theme? Aren't all of us stubborn to some degree be it rarely or frequently? Aren't stubborn people varied in many other ways? You could be stubborn and passive. You rarely change your opinion, but you rarely speak up. Add to that an interst in fishing. Add to that a job as a bookkeeper. You could change hundreds of variables and still be 'stubborn'. One's horoscope wouldn't be a reliable predictor of one's personality even if you believed in it and fulfilled your self prophecy.

nebularain
2002-Jul-29, 07:56 PM
On 2002-07-29 10:45, traztx wrote:
[quote]
Once, my horoscope told me I should watch out for a green van and I had to laugh, imagining all the people with my sign watching out for green vans all day.

That reminds me of a Ziggy comic I saw some years ago. Ziggy is reading his horoscope which says he shouldn't believe anything he reads that day. Can you guess this left him with a paradox he couldn't resolve? (HINT: he read the horoscope that day!)

traztx
2002-Jul-29, 08:50 PM
On 2002-07-29 14:56, beskeptical wrote:
One's horoscope wouldn't be a reliable predictor of one's personality even if you believed in it and fulfilled your self prophecy.


If someone follows the behavior of a role model, then I would consider that model to be a big factor in their relationships. Not the only factor, but a big one. Whether the models are people like Jesus or Newton, or species like cats or dolphins, or stereotypes such as Gemini or Cowboy, they guide their subscribers in their decisions and reactions, which are large factors in behavior.

2002-Jul-29, 10:09 PM
<a name="20020729.2:01"> page 20020729.2:01 aka As T ro [ ]
On 2002-07-29 16:50, traztx wrote:


On 2002-07-29 14:56, beskeptical wrote:
One's horoscope wouldn't be a reliable predictor of one's personality even if you believed in it and fulfilled your self prophecy.



If someone follows the behavior of a role model, then I would consider that model to be a big factor in their relationships. Not the only factor, but a big one. Whether the models are people like Jesus or Newton, or species like cats or dolphins, or stereotypes such as Gemini or Cowboy, they guide their subscribers in their decisions and reactions, which are large factors in behavior.

it amazes me the preconcieved notions lodged in the colective consiounness of the Non Believers

beskeptical
2002-Jul-30, 02:53 AM
On 2002-07-29 16:50, traztx wrote:


On 2002-07-29 14:56, beskeptical wrote:
One's horoscope wouldn't be a reliable predictor of one's personality even if you believed in it and fulfilled your self prophecy.


If someone follows the behavior of a role model, then I would consider that model to be a big factor in their relationships. Not the only factor, but a big one. Whether the models are people like Jesus or Newton, or species like cats or dolphins, or stereotypes such as Gemini or Cowboy, they guide their subscribers in their decisions and reactions, which are large factors in behavior.


A role model is not the same as a personality trait or traits.

And, you would be following your interpretation of the role model, but someone else would interpret the same role model differently. We are very complicated beings. You just can't oversimplify people by speculating that they could be simplified. What are you basing the statement that horoscopes could be large factors in anyone's behavior on?

traztx
2002-Jul-30, 05:27 PM
On 2002-07-29 22:53, beskeptical wrote:

A role model is not the same as a personality trait or traits.


Maybe my point is getting lost in the choice of words. Perhaps an example might be better. Suppose someone takes on the role of "peacemaker" to the point where it becomes a distinguishing characteristic. It seems to me this would be a big factor in that person's relationships with others.



On 2002-07-29 22:53, beskeptical also wrote:

And, you would be following your interpretation of the role model, but someone else would interpret the same role model differently.


Right. But there are commonalities nonetheless. Example: lime, hunter, and forest greens are still all green.

Who would you trust more? Someone who conforms to a sign that is distinguished by loyalty, or someone who conforms to a sign that is distinguished by infidelity?



On 2002-07-29 22:53, beskeptical also wrote:

We are very complicated beings. You just can't oversimplify people by speculating that they could be simplified. What are you basing the statement that horoscopes could be large factors in anyone's behavior on?


Based on my understanding that one plays a role through their behavior. And based on an idea that believers in astrology would conform to the general characteristics of their sign. This idea is based on experiences with religious people who conform to moral basics of their order. I don't have any formal research or anything /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif
--Tommy

beskeptical
2002-Jul-31, 04:30 AM
On 2002-07-30 13:27, traztx wrote:
Suppose someone takes on the role of "peacemaker" to the point where it becomes a distinguishing characteristic. It seems to me this would be a big factor in that person's relationships with others.

Where is your evidence that someone could decide to be a peacemaker (for whatever conscious or unconscious reason)? Read on to understand what I mean.

On 2002-07-29 22:53, beskeptical wrote:
We are very complicated beings. You just can't oversimplify people by speculating that they could be simplified. What are you basing the statement that horoscopes could be large factors in anyone's behavior on?

Based on my understanding that one plays a role through their behavior. And based on an idea that believers in astrology would conform to the general characteristics of their sign. This idea is based on experiences with religious people who conform to moral basics of their order. I don't have any formal research or anything /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif
--Tommy

I'm not sure following the social rules of a religious order necessarily changes personality. It might change behavior. But I think you'd have to have a personality that was predisposed to following that religious order to join it in the first place.

It is not easy to explain what I see happening here but it is a common mistake we all make at some time or another. We try to put the world together without enough pieces. Sometimes when I think I have a great idea about astronomy I find out I don't have the science quite right. That usually means my idea isn't quite right either.

When you speculate on your ideas about how astrology might influence behavior and become sort of a self fullfilling prophecy for some people, it is important that the speculation encompass at least a basic knowledge of personality development. There is a ton of research out there. What you are speculating doesn't make sense when you look at personality development. I don't think it matters to get into those details. What is important is to recognize when one may not have enough background knowledge in a particular field to speculate in that area.

I'm trying to speak in general terms here. I'm not trying to be condescending. We all have our own areas of expertise. And, there is nothing wrong with bouncing ideas around. But often when I am trying to discuss the fallacies with a particular hypothesis, the person who put forward the hypothesis has the underlying premise wrong.

If you want to hypothesize that a person can believe in astrology and end up having that belief shape their personality, you have to start with how is personality formed, how does it change over one's lifetime, how much of our personality is made by our chosen direction, (remember behavior and personality are related but not the same thing), etc., etc. I think if you investigate this field you will find that believing that one's astrological sign is the sign of a peacemaker, is highly unlikely to make a peacemaker out of someone who wasn't one to begin with.

Who would you trust more? Someone who conforms to a sign that is distinguished by loyalty, or someone who conforms to a sign that is distinguished by infidelity?

I wouldn't base my trust on an astrological sign.

traztx
2002-Jul-31, 04:19 PM
On 2002-07-31 00:30, beskeptical wrote:
I'm not sure following the social rules of a religious order necessarily changes personality. It might change behavior. But I think you'd have to have a personality that was predisposed to following that religious order to join it in the first place.


I see where you are coming from, but isn't behavior an integral component of personality? Would a someone with a personality predisposed to following a religious order persecute followers of that same order? What about the famous account of Saul who hunted Christians before being struck by some act of nature and becoming a convert? I have personal experiences with friends changing dramatically during their religious conversions, usually after their previous behaviors led them into serious trouble. Not only did their behavior change, but I saw emotional changes as well.



On 2002-07-31 00:30, beskeptical also wrote:
It is not easy to explain what I see happening here but it is a common mistake we all make at some time or another. We try to put the world together without enough pieces. Sometimes when I think I have a great idea about astronomy I find out I don't have the science quite right. That usually means my idea isn't quite right either.


Good point. And I think it's great when people feel safe enough to voice ideas regardless of ignorance. It can be educational and the ideas might be worth something, directly or indirectly.
--Tommy

nebularain
2002-Jul-31, 05:26 PM
On 2002-07-31 12:19, traztx wrote:
What about the famous account of Saul who hunted Christians before being struck by some act of nature and becoming a convert?
Warning! When using Biblical refrences, one should be aware that there are enough "theologians" on this board to catch you. This account is innaccurate according to the text. Saul was hit by a blinding light and heard Jesus speaking to him. This is what he said happened to him (also mentioned in one of the letters he wrote to one of the churches - unfortunately I don't have a Bible on hand to look up the reference).

Thank-you.

traztx
2002-Jul-31, 06:58 PM
On 2002-07-31 13:26, nebularain wrote:


On 2002-07-31 12:19, traztx wrote:
What about the famous account of Saul who hunted Christians before being struck by some act of nature and becoming a convert?
Warning! When using Biblical refrences, one should be aware that there are enough "theologians" on this board to catch you. This account is innaccurate according to the text. Saul was hit by a blinding light and heard Jesus speaking to him. This is what he said happened to him (also mentioned in one of the letters he wrote to one of the churches - unfortunately I don't have a Bible on hand to look up the reference).

Thank-you.



Right. I just mentioned a very brief summary. The light is described in Acts 9:3-4. My point isn't about how he was converted as much as that he was strongly anti- before joining.

beskeptical
2002-Aug-01, 01:13 AM
I don't want to stray too far from astronomy here, I'm probably getting a bad reputation for that. But since you asked.....

A lot of people give a history of a life changing event. I agree that would have an influence on one's personality. But I wouldn't compare that to believing in one's astrological sign and then changing one's personality to conform to a stereotype that their birth sign represented.

Belief that one's astrological sign agrees with one's personality is better explained by selective memory. If my sign says I'm a peacemaker, whenever I act like one, I remember. I don't pay as much attention to the times I do not act like a peacemaker. It doesn't change me, it only changes my perception of me.

This hypothesis has been tested and occurs in other areas as well. Look for any real evidence that there is more activity in emergency rooms, maternity wards, or, mental hospitals during a full Moon. I have been looking for years and haven't found any yet. I have found studies that did not show any pattern of increased activity during full Moons, but none that showed there was. I even did my own. I mapped out birth dates for > 300 births at one hospital I worked at. The births were evenly distributed, no lunar pattern, no low atmospheric pattern, (another myth).

Why do these myths persist? Because if it is a busy night and there is a storm or full Moon, it stands out in your mind. When it's not busy and the Moon is full, or, it's busy and the Moon isn't full, you are less likely to remember.

nebularain
2002-Aug-01, 03:02 AM
On 2002-07-31 14:58, traztx wrote:
Right. I just mentioned a very brief summary. The light is described in Acts 9:3-4. My point isn't about how he was converted as much as that he was strongly anti- before joining.

I'll accept that.

Jim
2002-Aug-01, 12:52 PM
On 2002-07-31 21:13, beskeptical wrote:
I don't want to stray too far from astronomy here, I'm probably getting a bad reputation for that.


< kidding >
Oh, no! Not for that.
< /kidding >



A lot of people give a history of a life changing event. I agree that would have an influence on one's personality. But I wouldn't compare that to believing in one's astrological sign and then changing one's personality to conform to a stereotype that their birth sign represented.


Just a quibble...

I look at "personality" as the hard wiring of the brain, the template or tendencies. What you are talking about would be behaviour, the way the hard wiring is used (or ignored), but not changed.

An example would be quite a few actors and actresses (Tom Hanks springs to mind) who readily admit that they are introverts, shy by nature (personality). Acting allows them to be extroverts, if only for a little while, because they can be other people (behaviour).

A "life altering event" or "self fulfilling prophecy" could change someone's behaviour, but the underlying personality is still there, unchanged.

So, reading that a Taurus is supposed to be pragmatic, practical and stubborn and deciding to behave that way is behaviour adjustment, not personality change.



Belief that one's astrological sign agrees with one's personality is better explained by selective memory. If my sign says I'm a peacemaker, whenever I act like one, I remember. I don't pay as much attention to the times I do not act like a peacemaker. It doesn't change me, it only changes my perception of me.


Pretty much what I was saying above.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Aug-01, 02:34 PM
On 2002-08-01 08:52, Jim wrote:
A "life altering event" or "self fulfilling prophecy" could change someone's behaviour, but the underlying personality is still there, unchanged.

So, you're saying that a rape, horrible beating, or wartime post-traumatic-stress syndrome could not produce a basic shift in personality?

Ehh...I don't think so. I think it's possible that such a thing could persist for an entire lifetime even. Your definition just avoids the situation, but what everybody else defines as personality does change.

beskeptical
2002-Aug-01, 11:07 PM
On 2002-08-01 10:34, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-08-01 08:52, Jim wrote:
A "life altering event" or "self fulfilling prophecy" could change someone's behaviour, but the underlying personality is still there, unchanged.

So, you're saying that a rape, horrible beating, or wartime post-traumatic-stress syndrome could not produce a basic shift in personality?

Ehh...I don't think so. I think it's possible that such a thing could persist for an entire lifetime even. Your definition just avoids the situation, but what everybody else defines as personality does change.


To continue on this idea, we are all saying very similar things. One's personality is partially hardwired, but it does have some flex. I posted a link to some studies of identical twins raised apart in an earlier post that try to evaluate the nature nurture mix.

To determine just what can and cannot change one's underlying personality we first have to define personality to all be on the same page. Behavior overlaps that definition and isn't neatly separate, yet behavior doesn't mean personality to me and vice versa.

Then you have the problem of do all, none, or, some events change the 'personality' you have defined. This concept is not neatly divided either. If I learn better self control in group therapy, or because I'm older and wiser, is my personality changed?

I have certainly seen distinct personality changes in people after brain surgery. People report major changes in their values and temperment after life altering events like almost dying.

My education on personality development is dated so I make no claims of expertise here. Personality is pretty well defined early on. What affects our personality after early childhood probably has to be very high on a scale of significance to us to have an impact.

Alas... the world is only shades of grey.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Aug-01, 11:16 PM
On 2002-08-01 19:07, beskeptical wrote:
Alas... the world is only shades of grey.

That's 'cause you've been staring at the Sun too much. It's actually shades of rainbow. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

beskeptical
2002-Aug-02, 07:54 AM
On 2002-08-01 19:16, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-08-01 19:07, beskeptical wrote:
Alas... the world is only shades of grey.

That's 'cause you've been staring at the Sun too much. It's actually shades of rainbow. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif


No, I've been living in Seattle too long. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

Yul
2002-Aug-02, 10:51 AM
The late Jim Lewis' discovery of astrocartography seems pretty accurate.

http://www.astrocartography.co.uk
http://www.astrocartography.com

beskeptical
2002-Aug-02, 10:24 PM
On 2002-08-02 06:51, Yul wrote:
The late Jim Lewis' discovery of astrocartography seems pretty accurate.

http://www.astrocartography.co.uk
http://www.astrocartography.com


And just what is it here that tells you it's 'pretty accurate'? It sounds good? You bought one of the charts and it's a match?

_________________
For the record, that's Beskeptigal.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-08-03 02:16 ]</font>

Yul
2002-Aug-03, 06:00 PM
Yes. Mars conjuct Pluto conjuct Midheaven running right through London. Lewis' booklet says: "Here you will become famous, infamous, arrested or murdered. You will come to stand for a popular cause in the media, or its antithesis....". It actually happened to me there.

Josh_imported
2002-Aug-04, 12:54 AM
On 2002-08-03 14:00, Yul wrote:
Yes. Mars conjuct Pluto conjuct Midheaven running right through London. Lewis' booklet says: "Here you will become famous, infamous, arrested or murdered. You will come to stand for a popular cause in the media, or its antithesis....". It actually happened to me there.



"Famous" and "infamous" are relative terms. Does famous mean known by hundreds, thousands, or millions? Same for "a popular cause in the media." There are certainly plenty of those to choose from.

Why is it that the "astrocartography" sites will only offer you services if you pay? If they are so confident of their results, why don't they offer free samples?


(fixed spelling)

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Josh on 2002-08-03 21:07 ]</font>

informant
2002-Aug-05, 11:03 AM
Here are a some words of wisdom on astrology...


JIM MORRISON: 'I don't know how many of you people believe in astrology...'
FEMALE VOICE IN THE CROWD: 'I do...'
JIM MORRISON: 'I am a Sagittarius - the most philosophical of all the signs.'
FEMALE VOICE IN THE CROWD: 'I know! So am I!'
JIM MORRISON: 'But anyway, I don't believe in any of it. I think it's all just a bunch of bull*** myself.'
FEMALE VOICE IN THE CROWD: 'I don't either!'

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-04, 05:49 PM
On 2002-07-17 04:32, beskeptical wrote (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=33):


On 2002-07-16 18:03, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Years ago, the American Association of Pediatrics recommended that babies sleep on their stomachs, to avoid aspiration of sputum. Now, the AAP Back To Sleep campaign recommends sleeping on the back--and they credit the campaign with saving thousands of infant lives every year who would otherwise have died of SIDS. Apparently, the first recommendation was killing thousands of infants per year.

But, it was science, no doubt about it. And not junk science, either. My wife and I felt uneasy about the original recommendation, and raised our children without following the original recommendation. Were we following junk science then?

No and you are arguing straw men. Recognizing junk science has nothing to do with revisions of previous conclusions, errors, falsified data, and things of this nature.

The most common junk science we do not teach people about is attributing cause and effect to coincidences.

Sorry to bring this up again, but I recently read an article in my local paper (sorry, no online cite yet) that some people are criticizing the Back To Sleep program, since they are finding a large incidence of developmentally slow infants, that they are blaming on the infant not being able to push themselves up and move their head around.

But now I notice that my original question was about the junk science of myself, not the junk science of others.

What did we do? We let our children sleep on their stomachs, sides, and back. I claim that the Back To Sleep campaign does not even rise to the level of junk science--it is a grant machine.

Here's how I recognize a scientist:
1) honor
2) originality
3) responsibity
4) skepticism
5) equanimity
6) sincerity
7) accountability

Hmm...maybe I've gone too far.

GENIUS'02
2002-Sep-05, 02:06 PM
sorry people, the third moon of jupiter was in conjunction with saturn who was at its farthest from sirus which was half way through its orbit of the galaxy when this post was created and this makes all information pertaining to facts and science erroneous. sorry for any incoveniance.

/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_biggrin.gif

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-05, 03:41 PM
On 2002-09-05 10:06, GENIUS'02 wrote:
sorry for any incoveniance.

Yeah, our 13th which didn't show, either.

beskeptical
2002-Sep-06, 06:46 AM
On 2002-09-04 13:49, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-07-17 04:32, beskeptical wrote (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=33):


On 2002-07-16 18:03, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Years ago, the American Association of Pediatrics recommended that babies sleep on their stomachs, to avoid aspiration of sputum. Now, the AAP Back To Sleep campaign recommends sleeping on the back--and they credit the campaign with saving thousands of infant lives every year who would otherwise have died of SIDS. Apparently, the first recommendation was killing thousands of infants per year.

But, it was science, no doubt about it. And not junk science, either. My wife and I felt uneasy about the original recommendation, and raised our children without following the original recommendation. Were we following junk science then?

No and you are arguing straw men. Recognizing junk science has nothing to do with revisions of previous conclusions, errors, falsified data, and things of this nature.

The most common junk science we do not teach people about is attributing cause and effect to coincidences.

Sorry to bring this up again, but I recently read an article in my local paper (sorry, no online cite yet) that some people are criticizing the Back To Sleep program, since they are finding a large incidence of developmentally slow infants, that they are blaming on the infant not being able to push themselves up and move their head around.

But now I notice that my original question was about the junk science of myself, not the junk science of others.

What did we do? We let our children sleep on their stomachs, sides, and back. I claim that the Back To Sleep campaign does not even rise to the level of junk science--it is a grant machine.

Here's how I recognize a scientist:
1) honor
2) originality
3) responsibity
4) skepticism
5) equanimity
6) sincerity
7) accountability

Hmm...maybe I've gone too far.



Language is always such a barrier to communication. There is more than one kind of bad science and we are just mixing words here.

One kind is pseudoscience. It is what I call junk science. This is where illogic and false premeses play a big part. I took vitamin C and my cold got better. I went to the chiropractor and my back pain went away. Both of these have been shown by a multitude of research projects to have no cause and effect relationship except placebo, yet people believe the relationship is there.

Another would be unethical science like faking data.

Another would be sloppy science like contaminating specimens and other variations of poor quality control.

Another would be mistakes due to lack of proficiency such as drawing conclusions from small sample sizes, failure to match subjects and controls, things like that.

Another might be basing research on faulty work done previously, such as using a measuring device that didn't really work but previous erroneous research had indicated it did.

As you can see the list could get longer and longer as one thought of ways scientific research could be faulty in some way.

I tend to lump the all the things that can go wrong with real science into one category and pseudoscience into another. Of course both can have bad consequences. The difference is not in the degree of bad. The difference is in the kind of bad.

I find it useful to make this distinction. I am not sure I have the opinion that anyone else needs to make the same distinction. In other words, I'm not arguing that there are definitions here that are right or wrong. It's just that my logical little brain wants to categorize the two kinds of bad science differently.

As to the best way to bring up babies, I recommend reading the research and recommendation rationale directly rather than focusing on the fact that there has been a change or conflicting advice.

Newspapers are the absolute worst source for any medical research reports. Reporters have no clue how to read let alone interpret research papers. You never know if the report is from one tiny study that might suggest..., or a group of disgruntled crazies who call themselves researchers, or legitimate controversy.

There often are risks and benefits and tradeoffs in health recommendations. I think the development thing with sleeping on the stomach is unlikely. No one is saying not to put your baby on its stomach ever. And if it were true, does it matter in the long run?

My son couldn't get his chubby little self into a sitting position without help until he was about 9 months and he didn't walk until 11 months. Both of these are well within the norm. He's 13 now and has no physical problems whatsoever.

And if the tradeoff were less SIDS deaths but a few kids with weaker arms? what would you pick? A marked decrease in SIDS deaths has followed the sleeping position campaign.

I don't know if the SIDS thing is a particular issue for you. In general, the news media does such a poor job reporting medical research, that many people end up frustrated or end up assuming none of the research is reliable. Actually it's usually the news that's not reliable, not the research.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-06, 02:04 PM
On 2002-09-06 02:46, beskeptical wrote:
Language is always such a barrier to communication.

Can I use that!


As to the best way to bring up babies, I recommend reading the research and recommendation rationale directly rather than focusing on the fact that there has been a change or conflicting advice.

I had the early edition of the weekly journal JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association) delivered to my house for almost twenty years. I also read People.


There often are risks and benefits and tradeoffs in health recommendations. I think the development thing with sleeping on the stomach is unlikely. No one is saying not to put your baby on its stomach ever. And if it were true, does it matter in the long run?

The recommendations are for sleeping position (http://www.nichd.nih.gov/sids/), and, although I don't have an online link, yes, the story said it did make a difference.


And if the tradeoff were less SIDS deaths but a few kids with weaker arms? what would you pick? A marked decrease in SIDS deaths has followed the sleeping position campaign.

As I pointed out before, a marked increase in SIDS deaths must have followed their previous campaign, then.


Actually it's usually the news that's not reliable, not the research.

In this case, I suspect it is the research. That's why I disagree with separating the categories into pseudoscience and real science. Real scientists are plenty capable of junk science.



On 2002-09-06 23:00, HUb' wrote:
6: YOU see the Mayans may be forcasting a
7: turn tward canabalism [ which to me computes ]

Better stick with the vegetarian astrology, HUb', soup to nuts.

<font size=-1>[Added advanced wave to HUb']</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-09-07 03:36 ]</font>

2002-Sep-07, 03:00 AM
<a name="JD2452524.C"> page JD2452524.C aka corn
On 2002-09-06 10:04, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: 2 IMIX 15 MOL
again: Listen Corns where the Mayan's start their astrology
1: in studing(dabbling} in astrology
2: Its the Mayan sence of timing that
3: seams to have a degree of abstract reality
4: {anyway for me it does} All Astrologies
5: i've encounted seam to deal with food
6: in one form or another .. the First & last
7: For example {Chinese} Start Rat End Bore{pigs}
8: so the way i see it if you eat pork you've arived
9: eastern its Aries(Ram)[sheep] to Fish
10 SO? as i see it the forcast
1: a lot of fish eaters
2: Now Mayans are a tad different
3: they don't start with a Meat Menu
4: to begin with {I know I know} how do you eat with
5: your knife {never mind the details for now}
6: YOU see the Mayans may be forcasting a
7: turn tward canabalism [ which to me computes ]
8: So theres not that nervana ending
9: Which for me seam more Sir Real than the other2
20
21 well belive what you like Line 20 makes as much sence as any

LucyP
2002-Sep-07, 09:00 PM
Just thought this article was pertinent to some of the discussion at hand.

People born in autumn live longer (http://www.reuters.com/news_article.jhtml?type=humannews&StoryID=1419574)


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: LucyP on 2002-09-07 17:01 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Sep-09, 07:20 AM
On 2002-09-07 17:00, LucyP wrote:
Just thought this article was pertinent to some of the discussion at hand.

People born in autumn live longer (http://www.reuters.com/news_article.jhtml?type=humannews&StoryID=1419574)


Makes sense that there might be an influence of winter illnesses during gestation as well as the nutrition hypothesis.

I'd want to see the study though. Did they look at stillborns and early childhood deaths as well? Did they look at all deaths for a year? Stuff like that.

Of course, seasonal variations are not the same as planet and star position variations. All the more reason to explain why the fallacy of astrology beliefs might have developed. People didn't often travel globally.

beskeptical
2002-Sep-09, 07:51 AM
On 2002-09-06 10:04, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
The recommendations are for sleeping position (http://www.nichd.nih.gov/sids/), and, although I don't have an online link, yes, the story said it did make a difference.

The story may have said it made a difference, but what did the research say? They would have had to follow the kids for a significant number of years to determine if sleeping position affected long term physical development. My guess is they had a small sample and followed the kids for a year or less. The news media always latch on to these stories because it's a controversy. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_rolleyes.gif


As I pointed out before, a marked increase in SIDS deaths must have followed their previous campaign, then.


Beskeptigal: Actually it's usually the news that's not reliable, not the research.

In this case, I suspect it is the research. That's why I disagree with separating the categories into pseudoscience and real science. Real scientists are plenty capable of junk science.


Ah, but the problem in this case is junk science, sort of. What research? Do you think there was research that looked at choking and sleeping position of infants? I'm not certain, but if the rest of medicine is any example, it's unlikely.

The suggestion to put kids on their stomachs most likely came from assuming babies choke on secretions or stomach regurges. Babies do have a little trouble right after birth. It sometimes leads to respiratory trouble in the first 24 hours. I really don't know if there has been much research to verify the risk.

As I have said before, western medicine has only recently turned to 'evidence based medicine'. It was more hit or miss before the last 10-20 years. And, there was almost no science in medicine 100 years ago. There are still lots of holdovers from the days when 'common sense' was all the research that was required.

Western doctors practice mostly pharmacy and surgery. That can influence their recommendations. There are many medical providers who aren't the best in their fields. And, there's certainly a number of less than ethical doctors out to make money. But those are still different categories than witch doctors and curanderos.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-09, 02:51 PM
On 2002-09-09 03:20, beskeptical wrote:
Of course, seasonal variations are not the same as planet and star position variations. All the more reason to explain why the fallacy of astrology beliefs might have developed. People didn't often travel globally.
I'm not sure, but does that mean you're coming around to my point of view?



On 2002-09-09 03:51, beskeptical wrote:
The story may have said it made a difference, but what did the research say? They would have had to follow the kids for a significant number of years to determine if sleeping position affected long term physical development.
Actually, the way I remember the story (I'm going to have to dig up something more substantial on this--I no longer have the newspaper, and I haven't seen any other reference to it), the long term effect included mental development. I've looked over a lot of the Back To Sleep sites, and even some of the older ones advocate "tummy time," so the child can develop arm and neck muscles, and observe the world--the last is important to brain function and development, apparently.

The suggestion to put kids on their stomachs most likely came from assuming babies choke on secretions or stomach regurges. Babies do have a little trouble right after birth. It sometimes leads to respiratory trouble in the first 24 hours. I really don't know if there has been much research to verify the risk.
It's fairly easy to establish the existence of some risk--when a child ingests sputum and chokes to death, the evidence is there. When a child dies of SIDS, there is virtually no way to distinguish that from suffocation. Very few babies under observation die of SIDS.

Some SIDS deaths have been attributed to actual murder--which makes the whole issue very emotionally charged.


As I have said before, western medicine has only recently turned to 'evidence based medicine'. It was more hit or miss before the last 10-20 years. And, there was almost no science in medicine 100 years ago. There are still lots of holdovers from the days when 'common sense' was all the research that was required.

Hey, you are coming around! When I said (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=38) that the dividing line was around 1970, I took your response (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=40) to be that it was probably earlier than that. Or did I misinterpret that?

When a scientist decides that their worldview is correct, and makes pronouncements based upon that worldview, there is a lot of potential for misinterpretation.

<font size=-1>[Fixed first quote]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-09-11 14:29 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Sep-11, 05:54 PM
On 2002-09-09 10:51, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure, but does that mean you're coming around to my point of view?


I thought you might comment on my comment. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

Nope, not coming around to 'astrology might have been based in scientific or science type observations'. You may be missing the distinction. Astrology beliefs most likely developed from anecdotal observations of coincidences. There is no evidence any careful observations were made when astrology was born.

I don't recall in our recent discourse, saying that weather, &/or other seasonal variations would have no possible impact on birth outcomes. I did say the impact would not be consistent worldwide because seasons and weather were not consistent planetwide. The study cited above took that into account and looked at seasons rather than dates for the southern and northern hemispheres. That was the first thing I checked in the article.


Hey, you are coming around! When I said (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=38) that the dividing line was around 1970, I took your response (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?mode=viewtopic&topic=1738&forum=1&start=40) to be that it was probably earlier than that. Or did I misinterpret that?


There's that language barrier again. We really are not far apart in our interpretations of the world. But we do differ a teensy bit.

'Evidence based medicine' is a fairly new term. Twenty years ago it would have still been, 'medicine is an art, not a science'. But, research was extensive further back than the 70's. I took your statement to mean you thought there was very little science in medicine before 1970. That's not correct.

Some kind of turning point did occur though, about 10-20 years ago in recognizing that a lot of long held practices were not developed with scientific methods, had not been tested, and some were not valid.

This thread started me pondering just when did medicine turn to scientific observation? Astronomy, chemistry, physics and similar sciences have long historical records. I think humans learned much earlier how to make observations in these fields. Medicine became scientific with less recognition of the fact it wasn't always so.

Certainly early disections of cadavers were a beginning. People like to believe trial and error lead to medicinal plants and potions but I'm not so sure. I haven't read much that would indicate whether science or superstition led to the use of various medicines in ancient times, and which cultures, if any, chose medicines from careful observations.

The discovery of infectious organisms came in the late 1800s. Then it took time before the germ theory was accepted. Surgical science was developing at that time but I really don't know when actual research began.

I am now curious to find some of these answers. So little time, so many interesting things to look into. Sigh....



On 2002-09-09 03:51, beskeptical wrote:
The story may have said it made a difference, but what did the research say? They would have had to follow the kids for a significant number of years to determine if sleeping position affected long term physical development.


Grapes:....the long term effect included mental development. I've looked over a lot of the Back To Sleep sites, and even some of the older ones advocate "tummy time," so the child can develop arm and neck muscles, and observe the world--the last is important to brain function and development, apparently.

Tummy time and back position for sleep are not mutually exclusive. I don't see the two recommendations as conflicting.


Grapes: When a child dies of SIDS, there is virtually no way to distinguish that from suffocation. Very few babies under observation die of SIDS.

Researchers are still looking for evidence to distinguish SIDS from other 'crib' deaths. I am not up on the latest in this area. It would seem to be evidence for SIDS when one sees the death rate decline with new sleeping position recommendations. I'm not quite sure where you're going with this idea.

If we get back to the original bad science vs junk science: learning more about SIDS &/or changing a recommendation when new evidence is found, just doesn't equate to 'the old data interpretations must have been bad science'. Maybe, but certainly not in every case.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-11, 06:28 PM
On 2002-09-11 13:54, beskeptical wrote:
I thought you might comment on my comment.
Fair's fair.


Nope, not coming around to 'astrology might have been based in scientific or science type observations'. You may be missing the distinction. Astrology beliefs most likely developed from anecdotal observations of coincidences. There is no evidence any careful observations were made when astrology was born.
Hmmm, not sure it's me missing a distinction. I don't think my point of view can be characterized that way--scientific observation pretty much arose in the sixteenth century, a thousand years after the astrology was codified. Maybe you should go back and see what I actually wrote and see if you still disagree with it.


Tummy time and back position for sleep are not mutually exclusive. I don't see the two recommendations as conflicting.
The article I read blamed the back to sleep movement for some developmental deficiencies.

beskeptical
2002-Sep-13, 06:14 AM
On 2002-09-11 14:28, GrapesOfWrath wrote:

On 2002-09-11 13:54, beskeptical wrote:
Nope, not coming around to 'astrology might have been based in scientific or science type observations'. ...Astrology beliefs most likely developed from anecdotal observations of coincidences. There is no evidence any careful observations were made when astrology was born.
Hmmm, not sure it's me missing a distinction. I don't think my point of view can be characterized that way--scientific observation pretty much arose in the sixteenth century, a thousand years after the astrology was codified. Maybe you should go back and see what I actually wrote and see if you still disagree with it.

You still haven't produced any evidence that any systematic observations of any kind were the basis for any astrology beliefs. If you want to speculate that there might have been default observations, how do you distinguish those from today's anecdotal observations that we know lead to faulty beliefs?



The article I read blamed the back to sleep movement for some developmental deficiencies.


Sounds premature to draw such a definitive conclusion. Medical research rarely is decisive without multiple studies or very large sample sizes. Especially this kind of study or this kind of data.

One problem I encounter often is the concern people express when conflicting studies are reported. I have no concern that a study might have found a drawback to a medical recommendation. That's common.

The bottom line is always risk or cost vs benefit. Medical recommendations are not fixed in stone. They are always, what's the best decision given what we know today?

I don't know if that concerns you. From what you are saying I take it it does. I see that reaction frequently, so forgive me if I am drawing the wrong conclusion here. The public is often disconcerted when medicine is not black and white. I think it's because we in the medical profession have failed to teach people about the research process. Instead, we have led people to believe all doctors get it right all the time. Of course, the public knows that isn't true from their own experiences, but they expect it to be true.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-13, 12:09 PM
On 2002-09-13 02:14, beskeptical wrote:
you want to speculate that there might have been default observations
Exactly

One problem I encounter often is the concern people express when conflicting studies are reported. I have no concern that a study might have found a drawback to a medical recommendation. That's common.

The bottom line is always risk or cost vs benefit. Medical recommendations are not fixed in stone. They are always, what's the best decision given what we know today?
Always? I disagree firmly with that. A change in attitude would help lots.


I don't know if that concerns you. From what you are saying I take it it does. I see that reaction frequently, so forgive me if I am drawing the wrong conclusion here. The public is often disconcerted when medicine is not black and white. I think it's because we in the medical profession have failed to teach people about the research process. Instead, we have led people to believe all doctors get it right all the time. Of course, the public knows that isn't true from their own experiences, but they expect it to be true.
Actually, I think the problem is that the medical establishment seems to assume that they have gotten it right, whether they have or not. I'd like to see a little bit more self-skepticism. Same with any scientist.

2002-Sep-13, 12:41 PM
"FROM the 486/100" & their4 no page name or time stamps!
Anyway1 yesterday on the 386/20
I attempted to post an update on my political campaign
[ yes in ever election I run a computer generated
write in campaign for some political office or other]
{this year? 2002 ? its for Governor of the State}
well? OR. if you must know.. anyway I was about 1/2
way thru my anty PoliCe state line.. when the system quit.. {well never mind then}
theres another ANYway? if i can remember:
OK? all astrology seams to me to have as a central
character[GLIF] the concept of a circle{pie}[PI]
& how to devide it up. some say devide by 12? othhers by 18, and still
others say 20? i of course have no idea whos right about how to devide a circle nor where to draw the 1st line?
I will say nce upon a time i was taught that the proper answers 5? believe what ever you like

beskeptical
2002-Sep-14, 06:42 AM
On 2002-09-13 08:09, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-09-13 02:14, beskeptical wrote:
you want to speculate that there might have been default observations
Exactly

So how would those observations that might have led to correct correlations between birthdates and whatever predictions you think astrologers might have been making, differ from observations that lead to faulty conclusions about correlations? When I wear my hat backwards, my team wins, and other frequent fallacies assumed from default observations are not science.



One problem I encounter often is the concern people express when conflicting studies are reported. I have no concern that a study might have found a drawback to a medical recommendation. That's common.

The bottom line is always risk or cost vs benefit. Medical recommendations are not fixed in stone. They are always, what's the best decision given what we know today?
Always? I disagree firmly with that. A change in attitude would help lots.

Huh? What alternative would you suggest? Gee, lets not treat your cancer yet, there might be a better alternative next year that we don't know about yet? Or, how about fliping a coin to see if we should only look at risks today, lets not consider benefits? I don't think I get what you mean. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_confused.gif



I don't know if that concerns you. From what you are saying I take it it does. I see that reaction frequently, so forgive me if I am drawing the wrong conclusion here. The public is often disconcerted when medicine is not black and white. I think it's because we in the medical profession have failed to teach people about the research process. Instead, we have led people to believe all doctors get it right all the time. Of course, the public knows that isn't true from their own experiences, but they expect it to be true.
Actually, I think the problem is that the medical establishment seems to assume that they have gotten it right, whether they have or not. I'd like to see a little bit more self-skepticism. Same with any scientist.


Well, you've just got to find yourself another doctor and a different medical journal to subscribe to. The whole establishment is not as homogenious as you seem to be implying. You just can't put everyone in medicine into the same group. Surely you know that.

beskeptical
2002-Sep-14, 06:47 AM
On 2002-09-13 08:41, HUb' wrote:
OK? all astrology seams to me to have as a central
character[GLIF] the concept of a circle{pie}[PI]
& how to devide it up. some say devide by 12? othhers by 18, and still
others say 20? i of course have no idea whos right about how to devide a circle nor where to draw the 1st line?
I will say nce upon a time i was taught that the proper answers 5? believe what ever you like


That's a good point HUb'. There is no scientific rationale for 12 zodiac signs or 13 or whatever.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-14, 07:33 AM
On 2002-09-14 02:42, beskeptical wrote:
So how would those observations that might have led to correct correlations between birthdates and whatever predictions you think astrologers might have been making, differ from observations that lead to faulty conclusions about correlations? When I wear my hat backwards, my team wins, and other frequent fallacies assumed from default observations are not science.
What is a default observation?

Although the scientific method didn't arise for a thousand years after, humans had been making intelligent observations about their environment for many years before the codification of astrology.




One problem I encounter often is the concern people express when conflicting studies are reported. I have no concern that a study might have found a drawback to a medical recommendation. That's common.

The bottom line is always risk or cost vs benefit. Medical recommendations are not fixed in stone. They are always, what's the best decision given what we know today?
Always? I disagree firmly with that. A change in attitude would help lots.

Huh? What alternative would you suggest? Gee, lets not treat your cancer yet, there might be a better alternative next year that we don't know about yet? Or, how about fliping a coin to see if we should only look at risks today, lets not consider benefits? I don't think I get what you mean.
You're right, that's not what I meant. I meant that I don't think the best decisions are always made, even given what we know now. I probably wouldn't have a problem if they were.


Well, you've just got to find yourself another doctor and a different medical journal to subscribe to. The whole establishment is not as homogenious as you seem to be implying. You just can't put everyone in medicine into the same group. Surely you know that.
Sure do. Married to one. Do not take any of my comments as criticism of every single individual engaged in the practice of medicine. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

And I have no complaint at all about my own personal physician.

I read a lot of different medical publications, and I notice a problem common to a lot of the "soft" sciences--often, someone thinks they are practicing science, and believes that that makes their conclusions infallible. Certainly not everybody.

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-14, 10:09 AM
Since this thread is not willing to die no matter what, I think it's about time to add some hard experimental evidence supposing a plausible scientific basis for astrology.
It appears that, the space our planet travels through, shows a very considerable degree of anisotropy. That anisotropy shows daily, mensal, annual periodicities, longer periods may well be possible. That's a result of over 30 years of experiments by very academic scientists, no weirdos, no cranks... Read about it here - http://ufn.ioc.ac.ru/ufn98/ufn98_10/ufn9810d.pdf by Simon E. Shnoll et al. Here's an abstract:
It is shown that due to fluctuations, a sequence of discrete values is generated by successive measurement events whatever the type of the process measured. The corresponding histograms have much the same shape at any given time and for processes of a different nature and are very likely to change the shape simultaneously for various processes and in widely distant laboratories. For a series of successive histograms, any given one is with high probability similar to its nearest neighbors and occurs repeatedly with a period of 24 hours, 27 days, and about 365 days, thus implying that the phenomenon has a very profound cosmophysical (or cosmogonic) origin.
.

Enjoy!

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-14, 10:33 AM
On 2002-09-14 06:09, AgoraBasta wrote:
For a series of successive histograms, any given one is with high probability similar to its nearest neighbors and occurs repeatedly with a period of 24 hours, 27 days, and about 365 days, thus implying that the phenomenon has a very profound cosmophysical (or cosmogonic) origin.
.
Wait. They're saying that days, months, and years have a very profound cosmophysical (or cosmogonic) origin? How does that help me?

<font size=-1>[Fixed quote]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-09-14 11:31 ]</font>

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-14, 10:45 AM
On 2002-09-14 06:33, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Wait. They're saying that days, months, and years have a very profound cosmophysical (or cosmogonic) origin?


Nope, they say that momentary fluctuations of all natural random processes are synchronous to considerable degree and they are also periodic in time.
Anyway, better read the article, it's mere 11 pages.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: AgoraBasta on 2002-09-14 07:00 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-14, 03:30 PM
It's a slow megabyte--I seem to be having some trouble with it. Why does the abstract mention that the periods are 24 hours, 27 days, and 365 days then?

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-14, 04:10 PM
On 2002-09-14 11:30, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Why does the abstract mention that the periods are 24 hours, 27 days, and 365 days then?


That's the obvious periods of geometric configurations of Earth-Moon-Sun wrt the "fixed stars". Thus such configs are related with the fine structure of random processes' spectra. Hence, a non-random correlation with the configuration of "stars" may arise in a system of sufficient complexity (like a human body). That's astrology.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-15, 07:28 PM
OK, I did download the paper. It's disconcerting--their conclusion contains the comments: "Forty years have passed since our first publication in 1958 [1]. Why then there have been no results from other laboratories? We believe that the main reason is that other
researchers are too well aware of the `principles of science'."

Forty years is a long time to keep a lid on revolutionary science. I may have to take a little time to understand it, too.

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-15, 09:04 PM
On 2002-09-15 15:28, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Why then there have been no results from other laboratories? We believe that the main reason is that other researchers are too well aware of the `principles of science'.


There's a lot of experimental results, though not too much published. The validity of experimental results presented in that article is not questioned for quite some time already. The problem is that there's no theory to provide a basis for mere speculation, thus any discussion appears impossible to theoreticians, so they all play dead./phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: AgoraBasta on 2002-09-15 17:05 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-15, 09:48 PM
On 2002-09-15 17:04, AgoraBasta erroneously wrote:


On 2002-09-15 15:28, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Why then there have been no results from other laboratories? We believe that the main reason is that other researchers are too well aware of the `principles of science'.


There's a lot of experimental results, though not too much published.
I did not write that, the authors wrote that.

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-15, 10:09 PM
On 2002-09-15 17:48, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I did not write that, the authors wrote that.


They wrote it in 1998, now it's 2002 when you quote it. So the "lid" is up, experimental research now goes on in many countries. Theoreticians still have it on ignore, like they had it in Russia for 40 years.

There are more instances of the same attitude to experimental data - low-energy transmutation assisted by apparent magnetic monopole radiation discovered 13 years ago http://arxiv.org/ftp/physics/papers/0101/0101089.pdf is still abhorred by theoreticians; strong variations and spatial anisotropy of gravitational "constant" for smaller masses have been known forever and forever neglected.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: AgoraBasta on 2002-09-15 18:35 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-15, 11:00 PM
On 2002-09-15 18:09, AgoraBasta wrote:
strong variations and spatial anisotropy of gravitational "constant" for smaller masses have been known forever and forever neglected.
That's one way of looking at it, I suppose, but that's accusatory rather than productive. I prefer to look at it as an opportunity--one which I have been trying to take advantage of for years. Wait a minute, I guess that means it hasn't been neglected...

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-15, 11:06 PM
On 2002-09-15 19:00, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
That's one way of looking at it, I suppose, but that's accusatory rather than productive.

My accusations are never without purpose./phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-16, 02:25 PM
Even the ones so easily shown wrong? Riling the waters may be a purpose, but it's usually not productive.

PS: Someone in news:alt.fan.cecil-adams brought up this criticism of medical science (http://www.socialaudit.org.uk/4200sbos.htm).

<font size=-1>[Add PS]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-09-16 10:40 ]</font>

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-16, 02:47 PM
On 2002-09-16 10:25, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Even the ones so easily shown wrong?

I pray for the other two to be shown wrong as single-handedly...
Still even the one that, appears as "shown wrong" to you in person, unfortunately does not appear so in general.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-16, 05:17 PM
On 2002-09-16 10:47, AgoraBasta wrote:
Still even the one that, appears as "shown wrong" to you in person, unfortunately does not appear so in general.

But, if you accept my personal proof, you have to accept your own. Surely, you're not ignoring it as well? So...that's two. How do you know the same isn't true of everybody else?

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-16, 06:29 PM
On 2002-09-16 13:17, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
How do you know the same isn't true of everybody else?


It could be my personal inaptness, but I can't find any attempt at theoretical analysis of the matter free of freakish scent.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-16, 11:27 PM
Did you mean ineptness? And did you mean, none of your own attempts have panned out, or do you mean you've searched and searched for someone else to have done the work and you can't find any?

Isn't that like saying, "I'd like a bridge over here, because I'm here, why aren't you all over there building here instead of there?"

beskeptical
2002-Sep-17, 08:30 AM
On 2002-09-14 03:33, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
What is a default observation?

I thought that was a poor description after I logged off but when you answered as if you knew what I meant, I thought maybe it had made sense. What I was trying to say was everyday observations rather than systematic observations.


Although the scientific method didn't arise for a thousand years after, humans had been making intelligent observations about their environment for many years before the codification of astrology.

Yes, but which humans were making intelligent observations? Only a small number of them. Just as today, it's still only a minority of people that understand the difference between coincidences and actual correlations or relationships.

And without any evidence that any serious or careful observations were made regarding birthdates and personality or whatever, I don't see how you can hypothesize that there might have been actual data that was even informally collected to base any science of astrology on.


I meant that I don't think the best decisions are always made, even given what we know now. I probably wouldn't have a problem if they were.

Do not take any of my comments as criticism of every single individual engaged in the practice of medicine. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

This may surprise you but I agree with you 100%. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif (Just kidding, I think we agree on a lot of things.)

And, if people hear what I say all the time they'd think I think every doctor in the country was incompetent. But I don't really think that either. I suspect lots of folks who know what really goes on in the medical field have similar opinions. I try to tell people it's buyer beware when it comes to medical care. That's not easy if you aren't well informed in the topic.



I read a lot of different medical publications, and I notice a problem common to a lot of the "soft" sciences--often, someone thinks they are practicing science, and believes that that makes their conclusions infallible. Certainly not everybody.


I think it has changed tremendously in the last decade or so. Otherwise, I agree. Some fields have much further to go than others.

beskeptical
2002-Sep-17, 09:13 AM
PS: Someone in news:alt.fan.cecil-adams brought up this criticism of medical science (http://www.socialaudit.org.uk/4200sbos.htm).


Interesting.

I had not heard that a large percentage of research might be fraudulent. Drug company research reports are certainly suspect, but outright fraud? Hmmm. Advertisments of medical products in the media cross way over the line into fraud. I was not aware the same might be true to a large extent in research. I'm not ready to accept this on face value.

One can never tell how well a reporter sumarizes what they hear at a conference.

It could be that the doctor who spoke doesn't like the new expectation that he should validate his practices with research. He seemed to complain about expectations of doctors as much as about the research quality. "...'what works on a particular population of people has little or no impact on the patient sitting in front of the doctor'. Speaking at the annual conference of the Royal College of Psychiatrists,...."

Psychiatry would be one of the last fields to really get the idea of evidence based medicine, in my opinion. It's not clear if the speaker was a psychiatrist before he became an editor.

I'm in an infectious disease speciality. It lends itself to research much more readily than psychiatry does. But I do have to say, when you're in any speciality, whether it's editing or I.D., everyone else seems to know so little about what should be the basics of your field. In other words, if I evaluated research papers as a speciality, I might have the same opinion as this guy.

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-17, 01:26 PM
On 2002-09-16 19:27, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
Did you mean ineptness?

I mean both those fine virtues.
All my attempts stumbled at very limited knowledge of the physical nature of space/vacuum. The hard info being so limited, assumptions one can make are too arbitrary. Until we dig it much deeper, we are doomed to theorize in an overly speculative mode.


Isn't that like saying, "I'd like a bridge over here, because I'm here, why aren't you all over there building here instead of there?"

Not exactly. I'm with the crowd waiting to cross a big river, while a bunch of errant cranks builds a huge bridge over a pond in their private playground. That's how I really feel about it.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-17, 01:37 PM
On 2002-09-17 04:30, beskeptical wrote:
And without any evidence that any serious or careful observations were made regarding birthdates and personality or whatever, I don't see how you can hypothesize that there might have been actual data that was even informally collected to base any science of astrology on.
Well, we know that ancient peoples did do such serious and careful observations of their world, so why wouldn't they have tried to do it with astrology? Wait--astrology itself is evidence of just such an attempt. You're only dismissing it as not serious based upon your current opinion of astrology. If instead the observations occurred as I hypothesize, then the observations were serious.

Actually, that is my hypothesis: that astrology could have been based upon serious and careful observations, rather than poetic imagination. If I had actual clinical notes in hand, then it wouldn't be a hypothesis--it'd be a fact.

Is it a scientific hypothesis? Is any historical hypothesis scientific? Does that invalidate them?


This may surprise you but I agree with you 100%. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif (Just kidding, I think we agree on a lot of things.)
I'm never surprised when someone agrees with me. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

2002-Sep-17, 02:36 PM
Fdom My Nieces 486/100 {disclaimer}
whitch i actually will try to repair
this bit of trivia [ // ]
let me trivialize one step furthor
left frame [ / angle ] right frame
assume an angle {from the line above}
and that its used to cut tward the center
of a circle from one radius.
using this angle how many sectors
should one expect to find 2PI devided? A?
b? 1 pie
now back to the study of grammer
c?2 and a flattened circle

beskeptical
2002-Sep-21, 09:23 AM
On 2002-09-17 09:37, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-09-17 04:30, beskeptical wrote:
And without any evidence that any serious or careful observations were made regarding birthdates and personality or whatever, I don't see how you can hypothesize that there might have been actual data that was even informally collected to base any science of astrology on.
Well, we know that ancient peoples did do such serious and careful observations of their world, so why wouldn't they have tried to do it with astrology? Wait--astrology itself is evidence of just such an attempt. You're only dismissing it as not serious based upon your current opinion of astrology. If instead the observations occurred as I hypothesize, then the observations were serious.

Actually, that is my hypothesis: that astrology could have been based upon serious and careful observations, rather than poetic imagination. If I had actual clinical notes in hand, then it wouldn't be a hypothesis--it'd be a fact.

Is it a scientific hypothesis? Is any historical hypothesis scientific? Does that invalidate them?


Astronomers and other scientists hundreds of years ago left paper trails of their work. The fact that other scientific observations were made only allows you to hypothesize that astrology might have been based on actual observations of a scientific nature. But an hypothesis is not supported by speculation. Where is there any historical evidence of astrological observations?

There are books of the interpretations of the stars' influence on people's lives but none whatsoever on how that influence was determined other than completely made up by persons wishing to claim the power to predict the future.

You can hypothesize there might have been such observations. You can then seek out historical evidence that those observations were made. You will then discover that there is no historical evidence of such observations. To validate this method, you can see what evidence exists of other observations. You will see that there is evidence of scientific observations in other fields such as chemistry and astronomy.

Since your hypothesis is starting to look incorrect, you can explore other hypotheses that would explain astrological beliefs. The evidence will support alternative hypotheses such as the whole system was made up from beliefs but not from any observations other than anecdotal coincidences which were not scientific and certainly not accurate.

You speculate over and over that these observations could have been made, but there is no evidence that they were. While there is evidence people have made up similar stuff and even continue to do so today.

_________________
Evolution is just a theory. Better fasten your seatbelt, so is gravity.
Beskeptigal.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-09-21 05:33 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-21, 01:14 PM
On 2002-09-21 05:23, beskeptical wrote:
Astronomers and other scientists hundreds of years ago left paper trails of their work. The fact that other scientific observations were made only allows you to hypothesize that astrology might have been based on actual observations of a scientific nature. But an hypothesis is not supported by speculation. Where is there any historical evidence of astrological observations?
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific observations made by astronomers and other scientists, thousands of years ago. Can you give me a specific? And why you consider it a scientific observation, rather than a mere observation.


Since your hypothesis is starting to look incorrect, you can explore other hypotheses that would explain astrological beliefs. The evidence will support alternative hypotheses such as the whole system was made up from beliefs but not from any observations other than anecdotal coincidences which were not scientific and certainly not accurate.
Just because some of it is made up, doesn't imply that all of it was, or always has been.

That's like saying, Koestler's book the Sleepwalkers shows that some major scientific advances were the result of what he calls "sleepwalking," random undirected thought that happened to luck onto an important principle, so all of science is probably just doodling around. Arguing from the specific to the general is not always the best approach--although Koestler would probably support it.


You speculate over and over that these observations could have been made, but there is no evidence that they were. While there is evidence people have made up similar stuff and even continue to do so today.
Well, I speculated once, but I am defending the right to do such speculation over and over. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

As I said before, if I had evidence, it wouldn't be speculation--it'd be fact.[/quote]

2002-Sep-21, 03:31 PM
On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To? HUb's 486/100

On 2002-09-21 05:23, beskeptical wrote:
Astronomers :.: astrological observations?
it my contention that my ob's are based more on l than n
sO HERES MY DEBAIT: comming up soon
will be the OCT-NOV-DEC Earth Quake active season
( which many Rationalist & Logical Positivist {pooh pooh) )
there exists a slim possibility dening that "SEASON"
that another Solar Flare of the larger X class
will occure { & IF one does, then another probability ..
that that X will induce "ON EARTH" an ERQ [Earth Responce Quake] Magnityde 6.9 }
and outside the range of Lunar cycle eartquakes (5.6 -6.5)
[CAN YOU FOLLOW SO FAR]: So assume I do get REAL data [50 hrs +/- 2] of X-ERQ
I MEAN {ERQ-X} durding a "LULL" in the active Quake season {upcomming}
WHAT DID THE N'ers predict: What did they say? Why should i belive 'EM ? Hmm?

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-21, 03:49 PM
On 2002-09-21 11:31, HUb' wrote:
[CAN YOU FOLLOW SO FAR]
Dunno, let me check. Are you predicting a magnitude 6.9 earthquake 48-52 hours after an X-class flare (should one occur) sometime in October, November, or December of this year?

2002-Sep-21, 05:45 PM
<a name="4 CIB 10 CHEN"> page 4 CIB 10 CHEN aka 4 CIB 10 CHEN
On 2002-09-16 10:25, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: 386/20.HUb'
Even the ones so easily shown wrong? Riling the waters may be a purpose, but it's usually not productive.

PS: Someone in news:alt.fan.cecil-adams brought up this criticism of medical science (http://www.socialaudit.org.uk/4200sbos.htm).

<font size=-1>[Add PS]</font>
whoo WE count me in for these SUB THREADS

2002-Sep-21, 05:55 PM
<a name="JD2452539"> page JD2452539 aka JD2452539
On 2002-09-21 11:49, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: 386/20.HUb'


On 2002-09-21 11:31, HUb' wrote:
[CAN YOU FOLLOW SO FAR]
Dunno, let me check. Are you predicting a magnitude 6.9 earthquake 48-52 hours after an X-class flare (should one occur) sometime in October, November, or December of this year?

yep: predicting this spacifically
in fact i'll go A step farther and put a time stamp on it
from tomorrow JD2452540 add 3 30's so it`ll be 570, 600 and at 630! 9:46 A.M. PST / 97209

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-21, 07:07 PM
So, December 21, 2002, at 9:46am PST. Wait, is that when the flare will occur, or the earthquake? Will the earthquake occur 50 hours later? Where will it occur, or are you predicting?

2002-Sep-22, 12:56 AM
<a name="JD2452539.eq"> page JD2452539.eq aka JD2452539.eq
On 2002-09-21 15:07, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: My.20
So, December 21, 2002, at 9:46am PST. Wait, is that when the flare will occur, or the earthquake? Will the earthquake occur 50 hours later? Where will it occur, or are you predicting?
[/quote]
I never predict WHERE? { just on Earth } for Earth Quake
or on Sun for Sun Spot: allright skip ahead then to DEC..
but reMember this Season its a New Moon at Lunar Paragee{sp?}
so 12/21 puts it near Full? i'll check up on dayslater..
SO sure even though the Solar Max is well past .. Over & done with so to speak
WE are speaking about XtraOrdianry Events and an X would be extaordinary's my guess. So if you find links to Quake [where] 4cast {leave 1 for me} posted 4:46 P.M. PST/97209 = pacific NW where Williamette enters Columbia & the 2 go "NORTH" TOGETHER

beskeptical
2002-Sep-22, 09:10 AM
On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific observations made by astronomers and other scientists, thousands of years ago. Can you give me a specific? And why you consider it a scientific observation, rather than a mere observation.

I give flu shots every year. Every year it's the same old story, people think flu shots make one sick. But the vaccinations only do so very rarely and the symptoms are usually no more than a few hours of a low grade fever and a few muscle aches the day after the shot.

How do I know I'm right and others are wrong? Because a large, 3 year, placebo controlled, double blind study was done, (one of many studies, BTW). The results were that the flu shot group had more mildly sore injection sites but all other symptoms occurred equally whether or not a flu shot or a placebo was received.

Why do people think flu shots make them ill? Because they got a flu shot and observed a subsequent illness. Well, duh!! Flu shots are given when the peak incidence of 200 other upper respiratory infections normally occur.

Sometimes people think the flu shot made them ill when their symptoms occur weeks later, (like nothing else happened in their life but the vaccination /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_rolleyes.gif ). A substantial amount of research shows there is a 24-48 hour time for the symptoms in question if the flu vaccine is the cause.

Sometimes I find out that people's beliefs about flu shots start with the wrong premise, that the flu is mainly nausea and associated symptoms. It isn't, it's a serious respiratory infection. Often people believe a flu shot didn't work because they started with the wrong premise that the vaccine is effective against 'the common cold'. They observed that they still experienced a 'cold', but they were unaware that the vaccine did prevent influenza infection.

Sometimes people believe that flu shots made them ill because they and a number of co-workers became ill after getting their shots. But they failed to notice that the same number of people became ill that didn't get the vaccine.

You can't just call all observations scientific. Without the scientific process, observations are only relevant in suggesting hypotheses. (Excluding observations for pleasure and other non-conclusions drawing activities.)

People learned how to observe the skies very early on. I still think it's fantastic how early eclipse predictions were made. I've been to Chitzen Itza for the Spring Equinox. The side of the pyramid stairs becomes a snake going down into the ground only on the Equinox. That wasn't calculated on casual observations.

I've said in a previous post, it wasn't until much later in human evolution that people learned how to look at themselves more systematically. Maybe it even happened in our lifetime, or at least it has been refined to a science in our lifetime. There is no evidence it happened when religious nor astrology texts were written.

I think if you look more closely at recent human evolution, you will see a marked change from beliefs that were derived from false premises and faulty observations to more science based beliefs.

I also think you will find the changes have not occurred evenly across scientific fields. Stars have always been easier to observe than complex human behaviors.

And, I think you will find that the shift from religious and superstitious beliefs to scientific beliefs has only occurred in a minority of the world's population.

People in all cultures are at all stages of development, I don't mean to describe people as either-or. But those psychic fairs can draw huge crowds. I'm still dealing with flu shots myths in almost the same quantity as 10 years ago, though I have influenced a few people that I see every year.


Just because some of it is made up, doesn't imply that all of it was, or always has been.

That's like saying, Koestler's book the Sleepwalkers shows that some major scientific advances were the result of what he calls "sleepwalking," random undirected thought that happened to luck onto an important principle, so all of science is probably just doodling around. Arguing from the specific to the general is not always the best approach--although Koestler would probably support it.

I haven't said, 'because some of it was made up all of it was'. That's your conclusion, I think because you don't understand what I am saying. The historical record is the evidence astrology was made up. Meaning the complete record: written history; social, psychological, cultural, and anthropological research; current research that astrology is meaningless; and, the absence of any evidence that it wasn't made up.



Beskeptigal: You speculate over and over that these observations could have been made, but there is no evidence that they were. While there is evidence people have made up similar stuff and even continue to do so today.

Grapes: Well, I speculated once, but I am defending the right to do such speculation over and over. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

As I said before, if I had evidence, it wouldn't be speculation--it'd be fact.

Ah, we've come full circle again on this same thread. I have said repeatedly, at what point are you going to decide the evidence isn't there? But I think this time I'll say it differently. At what point can we say there is enough evidence astrology was made up from, at best, false premises and faulty logic observations and not from anything even resembling the scientific process?

One problem with trying to leave everything open as possible is that you would only be ruling stuff in and you would never be ruling anything out. Well, once you rule in that the Earth is round, you also rule out that it is flat.

If you leave astrology open as maybe having had past validity, despite all the evidence to the contrary, you have to discount what we know about human nature and human history. I have seen enough scientific evidence from many fields to say astrology was never based on any meaningful observation of people.

In fact, if I were to speculate, I'd say the evidence points to early astronomers using their knowledge of the predictible sky to manipulate others and obtain resources, (like a job), by making up the supposed influence those stars and planets had over people and events. I'd even go so far as to speculate it grew out of the starwatchers' abilities to predict the seasonal changes because of the importance this would have had in agriculture and other aspects of people's lives. But from there on, they made the stuff up about the significance of birthdates and other supposed influences the stars and planets had on people directly. They probably believed in what they made up, but there was no data base that gave any validity to astrological predictions other than predictions about seasonal changes in the weather.
_________________
Evolution is just a theory. Better fasten your seatbelt, so is gravity.
Beskeptigal.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-09-22 05:40 ]</font>

2002-Sep-22, 09:42 AM
<a name="20020922.1:07"> page 20020922.1:07 aka possibly? many lines
On 2002-09-22 05:10, beskeptical wrote: To? O Hs U


On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific: Can you give me a spec
1:there may even be space for the MetaPhysical table?
2:ok some specks: once inside GW { by this I now say "BEYOUND" 3d
3: TIME ITSELF slowed & as i've said the
4: ?"[ compression oftime in space ]"?
5: can be comprehended (seen) radiating from T_0
6: or from with GW( again I mean beyound D3)
7: looking (observing) thru a curvature
8: in the levatation ?"POD"? at the wires
9: above in the race way and the individual
A: strands that make up raceway cable armor
B: its difficult to discribe { that TIME }
C: EXISTED that allowed those observations
D: to be so memorable and detailed.. The only
E: part I had not anticipated was TIME recompression
leaving the GW pod & returning to the ships TIME frame [ouch]
People learned how to observe the skies very early on. I still think it's fantastic how early eclipse predictions were made. I've been to Chitzen Itza for the Spring Equinox. The side of the pyramid stairs becomes a snake going down into the ground only on the Equinox. That wasn't calculated on casual observations.
<pre>1:***[ PREPOSED TABLE of metaPHYSICAL UNITS ]*********
2: ^1.? ^2 VELO |-------erg0---^3-----| ? ^4 ?
3: TIME LENGTH CITY FORCE {fudge}[e6] WORK POWER MASS
4: {--default--} &Acc {factor} energy {default}
5: us ?-16 _raff e-30 #construkt !plank fg(-15)
6: ms ?-9 _felt e-24 #gravolti !graft ag(-12)
7: ms ?-4 _rif e-18 #parton !part pg(-9)
8: cs mm _sta 1.6 e-12 eVolt !surge ug(-6)
9: ds mm mm/ds _lyte e -6 #bolt !merg mg(-3)
20 s cm cm/s dyne 1 e 0 erg ! gram(UNIT)
1: SEC METER M/S NEWTON 10 e 6 Joule WATT kg( 3)
2: ?hr M _warm 3.6 e 12 kWhr !cty Mg( 6)
3: ?11hr kM KM/Hr _blite 4.2 e 18 kTonn !boom Gg( 9)
4: ?day ?+4 _shake e 24 #Rh.ictar !rattle (12)
5: ?14 3/4d?+9 _wiew e 30 #Tp.actor !wtcht (15)
6: ?yr ?+16 _sheen e 36 #Sf.un !flue2 (18)
7: ??Myr ?+25 _puff e 42 #O___blartor !wowe (21)
8: { _ preposed words for units of force for each scale level}
9: { # preposed words for units of energy for each scale level}
30 { ! preposed words for units of power for each scale level}
1:_____
2:__d2__ clock 4: Sun orbits center of Galixy // equinox presesses?
3:***[ PREPOSED TABLE of astoPHYSICAL UNITS ]*******(planets & Suns)
4:</pre> so there you have it ..MY? complete table
5:of metaPHYSICAL units [covering about 70ish powers 10 (ergs)
_6:and also a coulpe of lines from clock4[D2]
7:astroPHYSICAL UNITS {table words not written}
8:sorry
9:
40
anyway its my guess [IF True] as Space increments Time intervals increment also {clocks slow} ?

AgoraBasta
2002-Sep-22, 09:45 AM
beskeptical,

Astrology is kind of development of the idea of calendar. Calendar is surely older than our species, simply because it's cricial to survival. Hence astrology development must be dated about as old as Homo Sapiens, or at least as old as megalithic observatories. During such a long period all the collected data has crystallized into a very rigid body which appears more like a "religious" dogma these days.
As the modern days' data collection, one may consider researches like the one I linked above in the thread. Given the extremely long and slow timescale of astrology, you can expect the recent data to be incorporated into its corpus of evidence in yet another thousand years' period.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-22, 10:02 AM
On 2002-09-22 05:10, beskeptical wrote:


On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific observations made by astronomers and other scientists, thousands of years ago. Can you give me a specific? And why you consider it a scientific observation, rather than a mere observation.

::snip flu story::

I've said in a previous post, it wasn't until much later in human evolution that people learned how to look at themselves more systematically. Maybe it even happened in our lifetime, or at least it has been refined to a science in our lifetime. There is no evidence it happened when religious nor astrology texts were written.
I guess I should take that as saying that you don't now think that there were scientific observations made thousands of years ago?


I haven't said, 'because some of it was made up all of it was'. That's your conclusion, I think because you don't understand what I am saying. The historical record is the evidence astrology was made up. Meaning the complete record: written history; social, psychological, cultural, and anthropological research; current research that astrology is meaningless; and, the absence of any evidence that it wasn't made up.
Depends. What do you mean by "the evidence astrology was made up"? There is no evidence from thousands of years ago that a person actually deliberately falsified things.

As you say, the only evidence that you have is that astrology doesn't seem to work today. Drawing the conclusion that it must have been made up depends upon rejecting other hypotheses--it does not depend upon having other evidence. That's just a logical argument, not a scientific one.




(Grapes:)
As I said before, if I had evidence, it wouldn't be speculation--it'd be fact. Ah, we've come full circle again on this same thread. I have said repeatedly, at what point are you going to decide the evidence isn't there?
Hey, that's what I said.


But I think this time I'll say it differently. At what point can we say there is enough evidence astrology was made up from, at best, false premises and faulty logic observations and not from anything even resembling the scientific process?
When there is evidence that my hypothesis did not occur?


In fact, if I were to speculate, I'd say the evidence points to early astronomers using their knowledge of the predictible sky to manipulate others and obtain resources, (like a job), by making up the supposed influence those stars and planets had over people and events.
Well, if you can speculate, so can I. I think the difference is, your speculation assumes that the motivation was not very noble.

My speculation actually arose from a study of science history and I noticed how succeeding generations sometimes view preceding ones as ignorant or naive, and think that the historical theories were the result of foolish logic. I found that the opposite was more often true. In other words, ancient thought was on par with our own, but the information that the ancients had at their disposal was not.

So, yes, I have considered the weight of the historical evidence--and I've come to the opposite conclusion as you.

<font size=-1>[Fixed quote]</font>

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-09-22 06:04 ]</font>

beskeptical
2002-Sep-22, 10:58 AM
On 2002-09-22 06:02, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I guess I should take that as saying that you don't now think that there were scientific observations made thousands of years ago?

I said, "People learned how to observe the skies very early on. ...it wasn't until much later in human evolution that people learned how to look at themselves more systematically." How is that the same as, "you don't now think that there were scientific observations made.."?


What do you mean by "the evidence astrology was made up"? There is no evidence from thousands of years ago that a person actually deliberately falsified things.

'Made up', as I am using here for convenience sake, includes accidentally falsified not just deliberately. It's that language getting in the way of communication again. I don't think it will ever be known who used their astrology knowledge as a charlatin and who used it because they truely believed.


Grapes: As you say, the only evidence that you have is that astrology doesn't seem to work today. Drawing the conclusion that it must have been made up depends upon rejecting other hypotheses--it does not depend upon having other evidence. That's just a logical argument, not a scientific one.

...My speculation actually arose from a study of science history and I noticed how succeeding generations sometimes view preceding ones as ignorant or naive, and think that the historical theories were the result of foolish logic. I found that the opposite was more often true. In other words, ancient thought was on par with our own, but the information that the ancients had at their disposal was not.

So, yes, I have considered the weight of the historical evidence--and I've come to the opposite conclusion as you.


Here's a fundamental difference we have that explains your point of view a little better. You don't have the same background as I do in putting the additional evidence together with the evidence that astrology has been shown by research not to be valid today.

I understand where your point of view comes from. I haven't had those same experiences so I don't have the same point of view. Instead, I have an extensive background in, to way oversimplify it, why people believe what they believe.

I have to understand where beliefs originate from and how people think and feel about their beliefs because it's required in my profession. In both occupational health and in infectious disease prevention, you are successful when you get workers to make better decisions about safe work practices and the best decisions about what to do when an exposure occurs.

That means addressing people's fundamental beliefs, not just telling them how to be careful. If you try to just explain the facts, the accident rates don't go down. If you find the why when people do or do not change to a safer way of doing something, then you can effect change.

So from my perspective, the belief in astrology originated from faulty logic and false premises. The evidence is irrefutable and can be found in research of the development of belief systems.


Beskep: At what point can we say there is enough evidence astrology was made up from, at best, false premises and faulty logic observations and not from anything even resembling the scientific process?


Grapes: When there is evidence that my hypothesis did not occur?

See above. But otherwise, we'll have to agree to disagree on this.


...Well, if you can speculate, so can I. I think the difference is, your speculation assumes that the motivation was not very noble.

Some of the time I assume astrologers knew they were making stuff up. Most of the time I assume astrologers believed wholeheartedly in their craft.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-22, 11:33 AM
On 2002-09-22 06:58, beskeptical wrote:
I said, "People learned how to observe the skies very early on. ...it wasn't until much later in human evolution that people learned how to look at themselves more systematically." How is that the same as, "you don't now think that there were scientific observations made.."?

You were answering this:


On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific observations made by astronomers and other scientists, thousands of years ago. Can you give me a specific? And why you consider it a scientific observation, rather than a mere observation.
Either you have some that you think are, or you don't.


Here's a fundamental difference we have that explains your point of view a little better. You don't have the same background as I do in putting the additional evidence together with the evidence that astrology has been shown by research not to be valid today.
Well, it goes without saying that we don't have the same background, but if you're trying to say that you have a better background, then I could dispute that--but I think we should just stick to facts, not opinions.


So from my perspective, the belief in astrology originated from faulty logic and false premises.
That's a belief. Where'd it come from? /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

beskeptical
2002-Sep-24, 09:27 AM
On 2002-09-22 06:58, beskeptical wrote:
I said, "People learned how to observe the skies very early on. ...it wasn't until much later in human evolution that people learned how to look at themselves more systematically." How is that the same as, "you don't now think that there were scientific observations made.."?



On 2002-09-22 07:33, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
You were answering this:


On 2002-09-21 09:14, GrapesOfWrath wrote:
I'm not sure what you mean by scientific observations made by astronomers and other scientists, thousands of years ago. Can you give me a specific? And why you consider it a scientific observation, rather than a mere observation.
Either you have some that you think are, or you don't.

Gees Grapes, you missed my whole point with the flu science analogy. Those were specific examples of non-scientific observations vs scientific observations.

The above statement was adding that true scientific observations began earlier with some science fields than with others.


Beskep: Here's a fundamental difference we have that explains your point of view a little better. You don't have the same background as I do in putting the additional evidence together with the evidence that astrology has been shown by research not to be valid today.


Grapes: Well, it goes without saying that we don't have the same background, but if you're trying to say that you have a better background, then I could dispute that--but I think we should just stick to facts, not opinions.

You have mis-interpreted my statement. Do you see the word 'better' up there anywhere? Since when does acknowledging different perspectives on an issue imply one perspective is 'better' than another?

I also said: Here's a fundamental difference we have that explains your point of view a little better. ... I understand where your point of view comes from. I haven't had those same experiences so I don't have the same point of view. ...


Beskep: So from my perspective, the belief in astrology originated from faulty logic and false premises.

Grapes: That's a belief. Where'd it come from? /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif


From the abundant psycho-social evidence of how belief systems which include astrology originate. People draw the same conclusions about astrology today based on faulty logic and false premises. To impose a different explanation of astrological beliefs in the past is not supported by any evidence. I shall stick to the simplest explanation unless evidence to the contrary is forthcoming.

Feel free to put in the last word, I have nothing more to add.

_________________
Evolution is just a theory. Better fasten your seatbelt, so is gravity.
Beskeptigal.


<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: beskeptical on 2002-09-24 05:42 ]</font>

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-24, 02:00 PM
On 2002-09-24 05:27, beskeptical wrote:
Gees Grapes, you missed my whole point with the flu science analogy. Those were specific examples of non-scientific observations vs scientific observations.
I didn't miss the point--the question had to do with examples from thousands of years ago. That was the point, the example wasn't.


You have mis-interpreted my statement. Do you see the word 'better' up there anywhere?
LOL! Well, yes I do!

You included too much in your quote.

Since when does acknowledging different perspectives on an issue imply one perspective is 'better' than another?
When you criticize my perspective?


From the abundant psycho-social evidence of how belief systems which include astrology originate. People draw the same conclusions about astrology today based on faulty logic and false premises. To impose a different explanation of astrological beliefs in the past is not supported by any evidence. I shall stick to the simplest explanation unless evidence to the contrary is forthcoming.
I think my explanation is just as simple. You have no evidence that it was just "made up" anymore than I have that it was not. If either of us had evidence, we wouldn't be having this discussion. Both of us are making inferences about the past based upon our experiences with people of the present.


Feel free to put in the last word, I have nothing more to add.
??

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Sep-26, 10:50 AM
On 2002-09-27 21:36, HUb' wrote:
http://www.4yourhoroscope.com/ .. to complex for me
HUb', you left off a /pre command again, below. It screws up the icon alignment.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: GrapesOfWrath on 2002-10-01 11:35 ]</font>

2002-Sep-28, 01:36 AM
<a name="astrology.Hu3"> page astrology.Hu3 aka astrology.Hu3
On 2002-09-26 06:50, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To? 5:24 P.M. PST <pre>
http://www.4yourhoroscope.com/ .. to complex for me
http://www.Facade.COM/ .. not astrology exactly
{ 0 }
http://www.mindspring.com/~present/ .. not working
http://www.rockiehoroscope.com/ [my choice / see general]
http://www.artwells.com/ .. also not working
AND .. So I will mention ROCK later in the thread
MORE?

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: HUb' on 2002-09-27 21:44 ]</font>

SeanF
2002-Sep-30, 01:25 PM
Now that's weird! Grapes, how did you post a response on the 26th to Hub's post, when he didn't make his post until the 27th?!

You been using your time machine (http://"http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?topic=2042&forum=2&start=11") again?

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Oct-01, 03:43 PM
On 2002-09-30 09:25, SeanF wrote:
You been using your time machine (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?topic=2042&forum=2&start=11) again?
Heh (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?topic=2042&forum=2&start=33)! Sometimes I just fall into the chronosynclastic infundibulum, never know where I'm going to come out.

I fixed your url--remember, this board doesn't use quotes. /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif

2002-Oct-02, 02:49 PM
<a name="20021002.7:37"> POST 20021002.7:37 aka To comPLEX2?
On 2002-10-01 11:43, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: Rock 3
i've just negan to follow ,, {um? the "general"}
and as I see it the new predictions
about what to do?
and what not to do ?/?
don't come OUt untill tomorrow?
Maybe i've got it wrong tho
as i've Just B_Gun this General thing?
Anyway for my part i'll say the Qctive Quake season sure started with lots of 6

2002-Oct-03, 08:20 AM
<a name="20021003.1:03"> POST 20021003.1:03 aka Oct 4 thru 10
On 2002-10-02 10:49, HUb' wrote: Back from 486?
The General Order of things "on the rock"
I the week upcoming { no i do not understand week}
finds .1 Mercury returning? direct after
haveing recently {last week}? been retrugrade ?/?
and then 2:"Venus":2 well become retrograde
10/10 [end of General discussion]
wlll LISTEN? I do use Mercury in one of my
forcast modles as a means for the prediction of Volcanic activity..
{but Lunar triggered Earth Quakes is a piece of cake
compared to Mercury : Valcano so ill skip it for now
What about 10/10 though? what did I 4cast for 10/10 [Later ? 1:13 A.M.]

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: HUb' on 2002-10-03 04:23 ]</font>

2002-Oct-03, 08:21 AM
<a name="20021003.1:03"> POST 20021003.1:03 aka Oct 4 thru 10
On 2002-10-02 10:49, HUb' wrote: Back from 486?
The General Order of things "on the rock"
I the week upcoming { no i do not understand week}
finds .1 Mercury returning? direct after
haveing recently {last week}? been retrugrade ?/?
and then 2:"Venus":2 well become retrograde
10/10 [end of General discussion]
wlll LISTEN? I do use Mercury in one of my
forcast modles as a means for the prediction of Volcanic activity..
{but Lunar triggered Earth Quakes is a piece of cake
compared to Mercury : Valcano so ill skip it for now
What about 10/10 though? what did I 4cast for 10/10 [Later ? 1:13 A.M.] yeah i see A quake for 10/10 {30%} so RetRo Venus=6.9?

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: HUb' on 2002-10-03 04:49 ]</font>

2002-Oct-05, 02:16 PM
<a name="20021005.6:59"> POST 20021005.6:59 aka ROCK : BIWEEKLY

Oct 4 thru 10
On 2002-10-02 10:49, HUb' wrote: Back from 486?

WELL ? for this issue its NOT "GEneral" but 4Aquarius {me}
it said issue disclaimers so here hoes
because its the 486keyboard from whence these
ravity waves of moving keystrokes cometh
Disc1: will be that secon key in from the LEFT
on the very bottom row which has the following
[ Ctrl ] [ #### ] [ Alt ] [ Space Bar .. arangement
wher #### represents the Windows logo
and when i hit it accidentally while reaching in the
dark morning hours for Alt {I get shelled out to Windows
{and easily confused how to get back {ESC}{enter}
Disc2: No snipper2 {double drats}
Disc3: Double line spacing for uploads {I have no idea}

2002-Oct-10, 10:46 AM
<a name="2-10-10.bw"> POST 2-10-10.bw aka BiWeekly ?
On 2002-10-05 10:16, HUb' wrote: To? HUb' 2-10-10


Oct 4 thru 10

So? Today? 2-10-10 being the tenth
will be the last day of Rockies 4cast
so its beginning to look like my research
{at least this week will be first & last}
.1 I may have missed two days of earth
Quake numbers this past week {maybe not}
2: i think it was last friday
the water pump on the car thru a bearing
{maybe retro Merc going direct JUST KIDDING}
3? G's some of you take this stuff as Go_Spell
anyway I found the string LUNAKHOD 2 ?
but never located the details of IF it had
a seismograph ability or not {{Probably not}
SO their4 i'll probably be stuck on X-RAY string things
{as reflected back from the star Polorus of course}

2002-Oct-14, 01:48 PM
6:56 A.M. pdt October 14, 2002

http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?topic=2430&forum=2&6

truthseeker
2002-Nov-17, 10:20 PM
I began my investigation into astrology 25 yrs ago as an assignment for a journalism class, with no initial bias either way. Science seemed to be strongly against it, yet when I looked at the other side I found much evidence for its validity, enough that I decided to learned to draw up charts to check it out for myself. I was immediately struck by its accuracy,& in the past two decades have found its insights and correlations with life events to be profound and sometimes nothing short of astounding. I had to accept the fact that something powerful was at work here, even though the science, the how and why, of it is not yet understood.

Reading your debates, I find many of the same old biases and arguments against astrology, such as the use of newspaper horoscope columns, which are despised by serious astrologers. I was especially appalled to see that an "experiment" using such columns is being used by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific as evidence to "prove" to Grade Fivers that astrology is hokum, in its "Astrology Defence Kit." Basing supposed education on such simplistic, invalid methods is extremely misleading and unethical.

Regarding studies into astrology, the scientific community takes one of two approaches:

1)Parade the studies which give negative results, while suppressing any which support any facet of traditional astrology

2)If it does get out that a study supports
astrological tenets, declare that it must be flawed

(e.g. Michel Gauquelin, who found the statistically proved "Mars effect" must have fixed his data. He and his wife Francoise collected over 25,000 sets of birth data from various countries. They must have spent a lot of late nights setting that one up. Please!!!)

If you want evidence, it's there in spades. Read Dr.Theodor Landscheidt's "Sun-Earth-Man" (Urania Trust, London,1989), a groundbreaking work in which he provides meticulously researched,astronomically verified, irrefutable evidence of the interrelationship between the fundamental processes of the universe, notably the influence of the planets on solar activities (sunspots, flares,storms) and corresponding phenomena in occurences on earth (economic and political activities, abundance and scarcity in nature, etc.).

This is just the tip of the iceberg; there's tons more evidence. Both scientists and astrologers need to open their minds and discard their preconceived notions to create new understanding.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Nov-17, 11:51 PM
On 2002-11-17 17:20, truthseeker wrote:
Both scientists and astrologers need to open their minds and discard their preconceived notions to create new understanding.

OK

R.A.F.
2002-Nov-18, 12:08 AM
On 2002-11-17 18:51, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-11-17 17:20, truthseeker wrote:
Both scientists and astrologers need to open their minds and discard their preconceived notions to create new understanding.

OK

Grapes, are you always this generous and if you are can I tell you what I'd like for X-mas?

informant
2002-Nov-18, 11:03 AM
truthseeker wrote:


I found much evidence for its validity, enough that I decided to learned to draw up charts to check it out for myself. I was immediately struck by its accuracy,& in the past two decades have found its insights and correlations with life events to be profound and sometimes nothing short of astounding.

Could you please present us with some of that accurate, astounding, evidence in favor of astrology?


Reading your debates, I find many of the same old biases and arguments against astrology, such as the use of newspaper horoscope columns, which are despised by serious astrologers.


I was especially appalled to see that an "experiment" using such columns is being used by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific as evidence to "prove" to Grade Fivers that astrology is hokum, in its "Astrology Defence Kit." Basing supposed education on such simplistic, invalid methods is extremely misleading and unethical.

You seem to be contradicting yourself here.
On one hand, you claim that serious astrologers don’t take newspaper horoscopes seriously. I can relate to that, since serious scientists often don’t take newspaper “science” news seriously, either.
But if newspaper horoscopes are not trustworthy, isn’t it a good thing to teach children why they are not trustworthy? Even if, as you say, serious astrologers despise them, the fact is that the average man-on-the-street often does buy into them. Don’t you think that this erroneous belief should be denounced?

Final note: You also seem to be arguing from the standpoint that “science is the enemy of astrology”. This is not exactly the case. Many religions also disapprove of astrology. Conversely, some scientists find that the ideas of astrology are worth considering -- as you must have noticed from the debates in this thread.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: informant on 2002-11-18 06:09 ]</font>

2002-Nov-18, 02:51 PM
<a name="2-11-18.SLt"> page 2-11-18.SLt aka So Lost that
On 2002-11-18 06:03, informant wrote:
truthseeker wrote:
http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?topic=2913&forum=1&0
I had to start over?
anyway Grapes0
if you happen upon this
I did happen upon {on page 8 I think}
your note that I forgot and end pre again
but you did not say on what "DATE" i did that
& i can no longer find anything in this
thread like rockie for example
----anyway this is a repeat of that
1? moon
2? full
3? Taurus {see i can spell TauRus} hip hip do a flip
4: Scorpio
5th.o Scorpio -=:=- Taurus {{alignment}}?
back to the Origional thread {page 8?}

2002-Nov-18, 03:47 PM
for three days
November 18, 2002
i'll attempt to keep
these two threads close
7:55 A.M.

truthseeker
2002-Nov-18, 11:49 PM
On 2002-11-18 06:03, informant wrote:
truthseeker wrote:


I found much evidence for its validity, enough that I decided to learned to draw up charts to check it out for myself. I was immediately struck by its accuracy,& in the past two decades have found its insights and correlations with life events to be profound and sometimes nothing short of astounding.

Could you please present us with some of that accurate, astounding, evidence in favor of astrology?

One of the most striking areas is "planetary heredity," i.e. the tendency of children to be born with the same planets either rising, near the Ascendant, or culminating near the Midheaven, and to have similar configurations in their birth charts. Using the data of 15,000 couples & their children, Gauqelin found significant results involving the Moon, Venus, Mars,Jupiter and Saturn, though the effect seemed to be absent for the Sun, Mercury and other planets. One sees these hereditary patterns constantly when working with astrology. In my own family, for example, one daughter and I have the Moon very close to our Ascendants, as do my sister and niece. My spouse and other daughter both have Mars rising in Sagittarius. My spouse has an exact opposition between Mars and Jupiter, while our son has a tight conjunction. Our two daughters have Sun and Moon in the same positions, only in reverse. (One is Sun Libra/Moon Gemini, the other Sun Gemini/Moon Libra, within a few degrees. I and my three children all have 120 degree aspects (trines) between our Suns & Moons.

Were these isolated incidents you could call it coincidence, but as I said one sees these things consistently.

Another interesting field is mundane astrology, the study of planetary patterns in politics,economics, and world events. ("Mundane Astrology" by Baigent, Campion and Harvey, is an excellent book on this topic.)Here again one constantly sees the cosmic patterns, particularly the outer planets positions, precisely describe events on earth.
In her book "The Outer Planets and Their Cycles," pub.1983, British astrologer Liz Green successfully forecast major changes in Russia, including a "breathrough of the imprisoned religious spirit of the people."
Indeed, when Neptune, Saturn and Uranus passed over Russia's Venus we witnessed the sudden, dramatic surge of democratization which had been inconceivable only a few years previously.
Another ex.,when the Berlin Wall came down in November 1989, there was a collection of planets in Capricorn, which deals with established authority structures such as government and societal mores. Uranus, signifying sudden change and breakthroughs, joined Saturn, restrictions and limitations,(walls a physical manifestation),Neptune, the dissolver of boundaries, and Venus, harmony and reconciliation; these were opposed for about a month by Jupiter, representing the principles of freedom, expansion, and human rights. Mars accelerated the action from a sextile (60 degree) aspect. At the stroke of midnight when freedom became official, the Moon was at the 0 Aries point, signifying powerful new beginnings. Sun and Mercury were conjunct Pluto in Scorpio: the release of tremendous dormant energy related to longstanding, suppressed, painful issues. Together, they described the situation perfectly.

A complete study is much more complex,involving lunations,ingresses and charts of nations and leaders.

Obviously this is an area which does not lend itself easily to stastical analysis, but the proof for me is in the repetition and in the successful forecasts made by some astrologers.
I could say lots more but I don't have all day here!


Reading your debates, I find many of the same old biases and arguments against astrology, such as the use of newspaper horoscope columns, which are despised by serious astrologers.


I was especially appalled to see that an "experiment" using such columns is being used by the Astronomical Society of the Pacific as evidence to "prove" to Grade Fivers that astrology is hokum, in its "Astrology Defence Kit." Basing supposed education on such simplistic, invalid methods is extremely misleading and unethical.

You seem to be contradicting yourself here.
On one hand, you claim that serious astrologers don’t take newspaper horoscopes seriously. I can relate to that, since serious scientists often don’t take newspaper “science” news seriously, either.
But if newspaper horoscopes are not trustworthy, isn’t it a good thing to teach children why they are not trustworthy? Even if, as you say, serious astrologers despise them, the fact is that the average man-on-the-street often does buy into them. Don’t you think that this erroneous belief should be denounced?

Final note: You also seem to be arguing from the standpoint that “science is the enemy of astrology”. This is not exactly the case. Many religions also disapprove of astrology. Conversely, some scientists find that the ideas of astrology are worth considering -- as you must have noticed from the debates in this thread.

It's not really a contradiction. I totally agree that people should be aware that sun sign columns do not represent astrology as a serious study, and I state this whenever the subject comes up. What bothers me is that these columns are being used as evidence that astrology is just silliness, not to be taken seriously, end of story. In the interests of honesty I think the children should at least be informed that astrologers look at much more than sun signs in their work. It's false representation.

And yes, I have been coming from a rather defensive standpoint because it seems the majority of scientists hold astrology in such disdain. Perhaps it's just that they are much more vocal than those who are willing to consider it. I've read too many portrayals of astrologers as either money grubbing charlatans (good word,that) or poor deluded souls grasping at cosmic straws. Certainly there are many scientists and well educated persons in other fields who are open and even actively involved,like Percy Seymour, an astrophysicist who wrote "Astrology : the Evidence of Science," and Paul Wright, a chemist and economist, who gets into the astrological genetics of the royal Stuart family in his "Astrology in Action." He also wrote the wonderful "Literary Zodiac.

You're right as well about some religious attitudes, but that's another story!

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: informant on 2002-11-18 06:09 ]</font>

2002-Nov-19, 04:35 AM
On 2002-11-18 10:47, HUb' wrote: To 8:49 P.M.
another push to sort & pack



for three days
November 18, 2002
i'll attempt to keep
these two threads close
7:55 A.M.

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Nov-19, 03:59 PM
On 2002-11-17 19:08, R.A.F. wrote:
Grapes, are you always this generous and if you are can I tell you what I'd like for X-mas?
You don't have to! This (http://www.edmunds.com/new/2003/jaguar/xkseries/xkr2drconvertible42l8cylsc6a/photos.html) is what you'd like. Unfortunately, you won't be getting that for X-mas. Not this year, anyway.

R.A.F.
2002-Nov-19, 08:32 PM
On 2002-11-19 10:59, GrapesOfWrath wrote:


On 2002-11-17 19:08, R.A.F. wrote:
Grapes, are you always this generous and if you are can I tell you what I'd like for X-mas?
You don't have to! This (http://www.edmunds.com/new/2003/jaguar/xkseries/xkr2drconvertible42l8cylsc6a/photos.html) is what you'd like. Unfortunately, you won't be getting that for X-mas. Not this year, anyway.


Man O Man, your even generous with your daydreams. Now I'll be thinking about that Jag all day long.

2002-Nov-20, 12:08 AM
another PUST2.COM