Does Astrology Rule Your Life?
By “Awake!” correspondent in India
“Daily Guide for September 1981”
“1. Tues. Good for patients to take first bath after recovery from illness.
“2. Wed. Good for testing instruments.
“3. Thurs. Good for buying cows and dogs, for ploughing the garden, for driving new vehicles, for taking medicines, for wearing new clothes, for appointing staff, for digging wells.”
THUS a popular Indian astrology magazine begins its monthly astral guidance.
Throughout the world much popular literature features charts on astrology, offering millions of readers advice and direction in their daily lives. And many do avidly consult the charts! But is it really true that the planets and stars influence people’s lives?
Characteristics and Origin of Astrology
Astrology has come to our advanced 20th century out of a dimly distant and superstitious past. It has come from a time when the ancients believed that the planets were gods, and that these orbiting deities held religious sway over the daily affairs and decisions of the masses. In those days constellations were consulted at births, at marriages and on every occasion of family distress and success.
The overwhelming majority in India today still believe that the stars and planets rule their entire lives. Many believe that some planets are male, others are female, and still others are bisexual.
Indian astrologers divide a zone of the starry heavens into the 12 signs of the zodiac of 30 degrees each. Each sign is subdivided into two equal parts of 15 degrees, thus making 24 divisions in the heavens. Each division is called an hora, the Greek word for hour. These horas, astrologers say, are ruled alternatively by the sun and the moon, with the order of control changing, depending on whether the zodiacal sign is odd or even. Since the sun is male his influence is masculine and cruel, and because the moon is female her control is feminine and mild.
A noted Indian astrologer said recently: “Parasara is no doubt acclaimed as the father of astrology in this present wicked era.” Who was Parasara? One authority states: “PARASARA. Name of an ancient Indian astronomer, the author of the Parasaratantra. He is said to have received instruction in astronomy from the Moon, and then imparted it to the Yavanas (Greeks).”
Do you believe that the moon can impart instruction to humans on earth? Or perhaps you believe that Western astrology is different. Note what the Encyclopædia Britannica says about the origin of Western and Indian astrology:
“Greek astrology was transmitted to India in the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD by means of several Sanskrit translations. . . . The techniques of Indian astrology are thus not surprisingly similar to those of its Hellenistic counterpart. . . . Recently, in the West, however, astrology has regained a large popular following, though there does not seem to have been any effort made to reestablish a firm theoretical basis for it. Both Indian and Western astrology were influenced by Greek astrology. Evidently, the Indians did with the Greek zodiac what the Romans did with the Babylonian. On the origin of the zodiac, a modern history states:
“The Chaldeans made great progress in the study of astronomy through an effort to discover the future in the stars. This art we call ‘astrology.’ . . . The groups of stars which now bear the name ‘Twelve Signs of the Zodiac’ were mapped out for the first time, and the planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn were known. . . . We refer to these planets by their Roman names, but the Romans had adopted the Babylonian terms and simply translated them into their equivalents in Rome. Thus the planet of Ishtar, the goddess of love, became Venus, and that of the god Marduk was changed to Jupiter.”
Therefore, when charts of astrology in popular publications are respected, or esteemed of any value, is it not, in effect, a respect and esteem for the old gods of Babylon? Would you want superstitious gods to rule your life?
Other peoples in ancient times worshiped the stars and looked to them for guidance, but not the people of God, for they were commanded: “Do not be tempted to worship and serve what you see in the sky—the sun, the moon, and the stars.” The Babylonians were denounced for their harsh treatment of Jehovah’s people, but the advice they received from their astrologers would be of no benefit to them: “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 be like bits of straw, and a fire will burn them up! They will not even be able to save themselves.”—Deuteronomy 4:19; Isaiah 47:13, 14, Today’s English Version.
Origin and Purpose of Heavenly Bodies
Outlining the origin and purpose of the stars and planets, the Bible says: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And God went on to say: ‘Let luminaries come to be in the expanse of the heavens to make a division between the day and the night; and they must serve as signs and for seasons and for days and years.’ And God proceeded to make the two great luminaries, the greater luminary for dominating the day and the lesser luminary for dominating the night, and also the stars.”—Genesis 1:1, 14, 16.
Thus the sun is to dominate the day, the moon the night, but neither is to dominate or rule over humans! Rather, they are to serve man’s interests.