“Horoscope,” derived from the Greek words hõra and scopos, meaning “time” and “observer”, fetches mixed beliefs, notions and debates all across the globe.
We often wonder whether the notion of horoscopes should be taken into serious consideration or not. I mean, it’s not every day we can be persuaded to think the orientation of planets and stars is the key to predicting our personal futures.
So, why is there such harsh debate about whether horoscopes are just fabricated by older generations, dressed in gypsy clothing with long length beaded necklaces and bangles?
The preconceived idea of astrologers from people who may dismay the idea, is often noticeable when discussing this topic.
So why do some people believe in horoscopes? What is it that makes them buy the newspaper of a morning, or go online, to read through their horoscopes whilst sipping a cup of coffee and enjoying a delicious slice of breakfast toast?
Well, this is somewhat along the lines of how my horoscope reading routine would go like.
Astrology is the belief that the alignment of stars and planets affects every individual’s mood, personality, and environment, all depending on when they were born.
Horoscopes make predictions about people’s personal lives, describing their personalities, and giving them advice; all according to the position of astronomical bodies (components of the solar system).
There are essentially two types of people who read along to their horoscopes. The first being people who enjoy it as a fun read, and secondly, people who are searching for answers and reasons for events that take or have taken place in their lives.
A well-known physicist, Dr Christopher S Baird, writes on his personal blog
When some people read their horoscope and follow its advice, they feel better.
People try to make sense of events occurring in their lives and long to know what else awaits for them down the track. Astrology and horoscopes help them to understand their purpose and future in a mysterious way.
Rather than plan their future, they can read about it.
This concept brings about hope and a loop hole for them if events in their life don’t go as planned.
Some people I have spoken to about horoscopes say if something in their life happens out of the blue, or is not desired, they “lean to their horoscope for possible answers”.
Dr Baird believes the “placebo effect is the mechanism at work with astrology,” and “many people believe in astrology” because of this.
I was able to dig deeper into the thoughts and opinions of others, to find out that some people read and enjoyed what horoscopes have to offer, while others didn’t have any interest in them.
I spoke to my Dad, a firm realist, and he said: “As someone who cannot contemplate that symbolic creatures on earth are in some way connected with random star arrangements, my opinion on horoscopes is that they are the product of imaginative and creative people, and have absolutely no influence or connection to our day to day lives.”
Because of this, he doesn’t read them and “consider them to be total rubbish!”
My Mum, who knows her House and Garden from her Better Homes and Gardens, was the complete opposite, saying “they are a harmless bit of fun and I enjoy reading them”.
While Mum finds them “entertaining”, some of my friends said horoscopes were an interesting, cool, unique, fun, and mysterious way to have an insight into tomorrow and the future.
Although some people mightn’t like to share their horoscopes and how they relate to their lives, Emily, a 16-year-old student who has been reading horoscopes since she started reading, said they’re “so much fun to share with other people” because of their “sense of novelty and appeal,” making them “irresistible”.
Others are more sceptical, finding them not very realistic although say once in a while there’s something accurate in them.
Tully, age 16, says she still read them because find them interesting and it’s sometimes humorous when she realises some things being stated are quite similar about herself.
Subconsciously, you may have been scrolling through social media and come across something related to horoscopes and thought “let’s just read and it and see if it’s a load of rubbish or not!”
I know I have done this many times and I have always found something that has related to me to some extent. This has always made me open minded about the notion of whether these predictions are fictional or if they have some sort of realism. I guess no one really knows for sure.
Jessica Adams, a professional Australian-British astrologer since 1988, was able to talk about how she came to be “hooked” at just 14 with astrology and horoscopes.
The first spark of astrology in her life was when she was in high school.
She cut out the Australian Women’s Weekly astrology book, created by Richard Sterling, and made a horoscope wheel using the back of a Cornflakes packet.
I found this to be a very genuine way of discovery a passion and found out that she believes everyone can “believe whatever they want” even though she is very compelled by horoscopes and astrology.
Jessica finds it to be important, yet not necessary, to make every horoscope she writes to be a little positive.
Sometimes people read their horoscope in times of great crisis and everybody needs hope.
Jessica said she uses Solar Fire software to show her the zodiac signs and degrees of all the horoscope factors. The patterns have a meaning and so do the signs, and the planets, asteroids, Nodes and so on. She relates it to a jigsaw puzzle, therefore making predictions.
In believing that astrology is a helping tool, horoscopes being delivered by professionals, preferably trained in counselling, and with a university degree is what should always happen. Having a degree, and also a counselling background, should be considered before studying astrology and writing horoscopes.
Jessica trained in suicide prevention and crisis telephone counselling with Steve Biddulph (professional psychologist) when she was younger, turning out be “very useful” for her.
Being a “constantly fascinating” career, Jessica is always happy to stick her hand up to deliver insightful and hopeful horoscopes.
With 12 zodiac signs and nine planets to cater for their predictions, there are a whole lot of possibilities for forecasting on individuals.
Horoscopes have proven to be a concept with the ability to provide people with a sense of reasoning, comfort and hope in their everyday lives.
Whether it’s true or not how the alignment and orientation of planets can determine an individual’s life situation based on when they were born, there is always going to be something in somebody’s horoscope that they can apply to their lives.