Have You Ever Wondered—
Are Horoscopes Reliable Guides?
MOST people are interested in the future, particularly their own. They hope that somehow tomorrow will be better than today. Many wish to know of difficulties that the future may hold and how to avoid them. For this reason millions use horoscopes, which are claimed to help a person foresee his future and guide him correctly in making important decisions. Of course, this raises an obvious question:
HOW RELIABLE ARE HOROSCOPES?
Horoscopes are based on astrology. Astrologers say that, to be completely accurate, a horoscope must be based upon the position of the heavenly bodies at the exact time and location of an individual’s birth.
Newspaper and magazine horoscopes, which many consult, are not patterned to individuals. So they do not meet this requirement. Therefore they could not be expected to be very accurate.
ARE HOROSCOPES CAST FOR INDIVIDUALS MORE RELIABLE?
Believers in astrology will cite examples to prove the reliability of individually cast horoscopes. But they must admit that at times astrologers have made serious errors in “reading the stars.” And they can’t agree whether the time and location of a person’s BIRTH or of CONCEPTION should be used in casting a horoscope. The time difference could be nine months!
If they are satisfied as to the time and location used, what about the interpretation? “You will notice that each house [division of a horoscope] has several meanings,” reveals the book “Astrology for the Aquarian Age.” Which is the correct one? The book continues: “You can see then that you will be the best judge as to which meanings are most applicable to you.” Yet, could your own selection be wrong?
In view of these uncertainties, do you feel that a person could be confident that his horoscope had been cast on a reliable basis and correctly interpreted?
It is true that at times astrologers have made accurate predictions. For instance, some astrologers foretold Harry Truman’s unexpected election to the American presidency in 1948 and Napoleon’s surprising defeat at Waterloo in 1815.
Yet, on the other hand, a group of leading English astrologers in 1939, when the nations were on the brink of world war, assured their followers that, according to astrological signs, no war was imminent. A survey taken in 1941 of the three most popular English astrologers revealed that, out of 30 predictions, the best was only 40 percent correct, whereas one of his colleagues was only 13 percent accurate. Would either degree of accuracy warrant your confidence? Could such a source really guide you in making wise decisions that would help you to avoid calamity?
Did you realize that 2,500 years ago the people who had originated astrology and relied heavily on it found it a poor guide? It was not able to alert them to impending disaster. The Bible mentions it. Addressing the nation of Babylon, it says: “You are powerless in spite of the advice you get. Let your astrologers come forward and save you—those people who study the stars, who map out the zones of the heavens and tell you from month to month what is going to happen to you. . . . They will not even be able to save themselves.”—Isa. 47:13, 14, Good News Bible.
Those that ‘studied the stars’ utterly failed to provide reliable guidance—and that when the nation faced a disastrous end. Could the use of a horoscope likewise fail you?
Though acknowledged as unreliable, many still consider its use “harmless fun.” So . . .
IS THERE ANY DANGER INVOLVED?
Astrology’s background moves the subject of horoscopes out of the realm of entertainment into the realm of religion. “The American People’s Encyclopedia” explains: “Astrology . . . was highly respected as a means of ascertaining the will of the gods and of discovering the future destiny of individuals and nations. The early Jews, in contrast to the Babylonians and Chaldeans, did not practice astrology, since the very nature of their God precluded the use of such an art.”
Note that the “early Jews” did not practice astrology. This was because their religion was based on the Bible, which strictly condemned astrology. (See Deuteronomy 18:10-12.) Man’s Creator, the author of the Bible, did not want his people to be misled. Even authorities today warn of the dangers from using horoscopes. One scientist said: “The danger is that if people really believe in it, it takes away their power to make their own decisions.”
Naturally, we all want to make good decisions regarding our future. Since God condemns astrology, we may wonder . . .
WHAT RELIABLE GUIDE IS THERE?
In sharp contrast to unreliable horoscopes stands the Bible. The fact that hundreds of its prophecies in ancient times and in our day have been fulfilled—not with just 13- or 40-percent accuracy, but with 100-percent accuracy—proves its reliability. That is why millions of persons consider it to be a trustworthy guide. They have learned to use its principles, rather than a horoscope, as a “light” to aid them in making wise decisions and avoiding dangers. By investigating its contents and applying its fine counsel, they have experienced increased happiness.—Ps. 119:105.
No, the Bible will not promise you, as a horoscope might, that “you will meet the mate of your dreams,” but it will instruct you on how to enjoy a happy marriage. It will not help you to “come into an inheritance” of money, but it will direct you to a far greater inheritance—everlasting life on a paradise earth. Its author guarantees that he will soon remove wickedness from this earth so that righteous-hearted persons can enjoy an “abundance of peace” under a perfect heavenly government, God’s kingdom. By patterning your life, not after the stars, but after the most reliable guide in existence, the Bible, you can live to enjoy such blessings eternally.—Ps. 37:10, 11, 29, 38.