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Year 6 - N° 264 - June 10, 2012


Belo Horizonte, MG (Brasil)

Pedro Campos - pedro@aliseditora.com.br  


Astrology: can we believe forecasts? 

Paulo Neto

When asked about what the Spiritualistic Doctrine says about Astrology, we did some research and raised a few points about this subject.

We should, above all, know what this term means. We drew upon the Encarta Encyclopedia which brings the following:

Astrology, a discipline that observes analyses and studies the positions and movements of star bodies, in relation with phenomena that happens on Earth. Astrologers state that the position of stars at the exact time of birth – besides the following astral movements – influence the character and the destiny of human beings. Scientists deny the principles of Astrology, but millions of people believe in it and practice it.

Astrologers do astral maps, also called horoscopes, pinpointing the position of stars at a certain point in time. In the astral map we find the elliptical – the apparent trajectory of the Sun, throughout the sky, during a year – with the twelve signs of the zodiac: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces. To each planet (including the Sun and the Moon) a few characteristics are given, depending on the place of the elliptical and the moment in which the horoscope is made. The horoscope is also divided into twelve signs, related to the 24 hours spent by the Earth to turn around its axis. Each one of those signs is related to situations of life. Astrologers make their predictions by interpreting the position of stars within the signs of the horoscope.

Knowing what Astrology is, we can see now what we find about it in the Spiritualistic Codification. Let’s begin with The Book of Spirits (KARDEC, 1987,p. 326-332), the first work published by Kardec:

867 – Where does the expression “to be born under a happy star” come from?

-Old superstition that linked the stars to the destiny of every man; an allegory that certain people are foolish enough to take by the letter.

Therefore, the answer given by the Superior Sprits to Kardec places the influence of stars as a mere superstition. 

The knowledge of the future is not given to man  

859b – Are there facts that, forcefully, should happen and that the will of Spirits cannot avoid?

-Yes, but you, in the state of Spirit, has seen and foreseen them, when making you choice. However do not believe that everything has been written, as they say. A happening is, frequently, the consequence of something you have done out of your free will, in such a way that if you hadn’t done this deed, such thing wouldn’t have occurred. If you burn your finger, there’s nothing to it; it’s the result of your recklessness and the consequence of matter. There’s nothing but great pains, which can influence your morals and are predicted by God, for they are useful to your depuration and instruction.

We understand then, that certain events happen in our lives as a consequence of actions that we have perpetrated. If there’s some influence, it’s because of our deeds and not the stars. Besides that, actions are completely individual, whereas they try to say they are collective, for they reach thousands of people at the same time. On the other hand, where would our free-will be if everything is pre-determined by the stars?

860 – Could man, by his Will and actions, make things that are supposed to happen not happen and vice-versa?

- Yes, he could, provided this apparent deviation is able to harmonize with the life he’s chosen. Furthermore, in order to do Good, as it should be our main goal of life, it could stop Evil.

It is clear that if we can change something it is because it’s not fatal or a strict fate, which we must bear or fulfill. Because of that, it has no way to be defined by the position and influence of the stars.

868 – Can the future be revealed to man?

-In principle, the future is hidden from him, unless in some rare occasions in which God allows the revelation.

If our future were determined by the position of the stars, it wouldn’t be rare or exceptional, falling in contradiction with the response of the Spirits.  

Fate is, in fact, a result of the choice made by the Spirit. 

869 – Why is the future hidden from man?

- If man knew the future, he would neglect the present and wouldn’t act with the same freedom, for he would be overcome with the thought that, if something is supposed to happen, he shouldn’t worry about it, or else, try to make it difficult to happen. God did not want this to happen, in order for everyone to concur for things to happen, even those that they would like to oppose. Thus, you’ll prepare, without knowing, the happenings throughout the course of your life.

And this is the explanation of the Spirits why the future is not revealed to us. Death is an event that will happen to all of us, and we know about this future event; however no one prepares for it; confirming what the Spirits told Kardec.

851 – There’s a fatality in the happenings of life, according to the sense of the word. Aren’t all the events predetermined? In this case, what happens to free will?

- Fatality does not exist unless by the choice made by the Spirit, as incarnated, to endure such and such ordeal. By choosing, he kind of writes his destiny which is a consequence of the same position he occupies. I speak of physical trials, for moral ones and temptations, the Spirit, using his free will over Good and Evil, is always able to give in or resist. A good Spirit, when seeing him weaken, can come to his rescue, but cannot influence upon him in a way that it overwhelms his will. A bad Spirit, meaning, an inferior one, exposing or exaggerating a physical flaw in him, may shaken and frighten him; but the incarnated Spirit’s free-will is not less free from all the deterrents.

If a good Spirit cannot influence manethe Spiritira to dominate someone’s will, how could a star? And what if fate exists only from what we choose, how does the influence of the stars apply?

852 – There are people whose fate seems to follow them around regardless of the way they behave; isn’t unhappiness in their destiny?

- They may be trials they’re supposed to endure and that they have chosen. But still, take into account that destiny sometimes is a consequence of your own flaw. In your tribulations, make an effort for your consciousness to be pure, and you shall be consoled.   

The so-called constellations look like clusters, but aren’t really.

Again re-stating that what we name destiny is Just a reflex of our actions and not influenced by anything else.

In The Genesis, last work by Kardec, we will find a few considerations that serve our study:

The groupings that were named constellations are nothing but apparent clusters, caused by distance; its figures are nothing but effects of perspective, like the lights on a plain field, or the trees in a forest that take shape in the eyes of the beholder placed in a fixed point. In reality, however, such clusters do not exist. If we could approach one of them, its shape would dissipate and other groups would form.

Well, if these clusters don’t exist, it’s an illusion that a superstitious and mundane belief is based on it. In order to distinguish constellations, they were given names such as: Leo, Taurus, Gemini, Virgo, Libra, Capricorn, Cancer, Orion, Hercules, Ursa Major or David’s Carriage, Ursa Minor, Lira, etc. and, to represent them, they were given forms that these names recall.

The belief in the influence of constellations, moreover the ones that constitute the twelve signs of the zodiac, came from the idea linked to the names they bring. If for the one named Leo we would start naming donkey or sheep, another influence would be attributed to it. (KARDEC, 1995, p.100-101).

As such, the groupings of stars are just tricks of the light, and not real; therefore, to influence or to determine the character of a person becomes something completely insane. Besides, there’s the question of the movement of stars, whose instability produces different locations of these groupings, taken as symbols of the Zodiac.  

Effects of the phenomena called precession of equinoxes 

Let’s check, for instance, the question of the precession of equinoxes, through an analysis by Kardec:

6. – Besides it annual movement around the Sun, which gives birth to the seasons, its rotation around its axis in 24 hours, the origin of day and night, the Earth has a third movement that is completed roughly every 25.000 years, or more precisely, in 25.868 years, and that produces a phenomena in astronomy called precession of equinoxes (Chap. V, nº 11). This movement, that cannot be explained in a few words, without the help of some figures and a geometrical demonstration, consists of a kind of circular oscillation, compared to a ‘dying’ spinning top, for which the Earth’s axis, changing its inclination, describes a double cone, whose vortex is in the center of the planet, reaching the bases of these cones, in an amplitude of 23 and ½ degrees of radius.

7. – The equinox is the moment when the Sun, going from one hemisphere to the other, finds itself perpendicular to the Equator, which happens twice a year, on the 21st of March, when the Sun goes from the boreal hemisphere, and on the 22nd of September, when it returns to the Austral hemisphere.

But, because of the gradual change in the obliquity of the axis, which leads to another change in the obliquity of the Equator over the elliptical, the event of the equinox takes longer every year (by 25 minutes and 7 seconds). To this increase in time is given the name of precession of equinoxes (from the Latin “proecedere”, to move forward, composed of “proe”, forward and “cedere” to move).

With time, these few minutes amount to hours, days, months and years, resulting in the equinox of Spring, that can be now seen in the month of March, and will be ssen in the month of February, and then in January, then December. And then, the month of December will have the temperature of March and March June’s and so forth, until when, getting back to the month of March, things will find themselves in their actual state, which will happen in 25.868 years, to start this revolution over again. (1)

8. - From this conic movement of the axis, results the earth’s poles never facing the same points in the sky; that the Polar Star will not always be the Polar Star; that the poles bend more or less towards the Sun and receive its rays more or less directly, which may cause Iceland and Lapland, located in the arctic circle, to receive solar rays as if they were in the latitude of Spain and Italy, meaning that the opposite may also occur in a period of 25.000 years(2) 

The influence of the stars in man’s cellular complex 

If “only after 25.868 years” we return to the beginning to “indefinitely restart the same revolution”, so, within this period, the groupings move constantly. Well, not being fixed points, there’s nothing to prove that being born at a certain time or a certain day will influence you, because this movement is not precise in evaluating or establishing the influence over an individual.

Emmanuel, through Chico Xavier’s psychographs, tells in the book O Consolador (p. 89):

140 – Do stars influence man’s life?

- The ancient astrological assertive have a reason to exist. The magnetic field and the planetary conjunctions influence man’s cellular complex, in its organic formation and birth: however, planetary existence is like a struggle. If astral influences do not favor certain creatures, it is imperative that they fight against disturbing elements, because, above all astrological truths we have the Gospel, and the Gospel teaches us that each will receive according to his deeds, and each one is under the influences one deserves.

From Emmanuel’s response we conclude: the influence of the stars exists only in the cellular complex of the physical man, that is, there’s no influence in the character or the destiny of man, but only in his physical body. This influence cannot be denied. If we conduct a research, we will surely find out that full moon nights breed a higher number of deliveries in the animal world; man included (rational animal). The influence of the Moon on tides is another example.

We cannot say for sure, but, in certain situations, our behavior may suffer alterations, such as bad mood or sadness caused by environmental conditions, as cloudy or rainy days. It appears that these alterations do not reach the point of molding our character or our destiny, otherwise we’d have to accept that everyone born on the same day or hour is exactly the same in character in destiny.

141 – Are there spiritual influences between human beings and their names, on Earth as well as in space?

- On Earth or in the invisible plane, we have the sacred symbology of words; however, the study of those influences requires a great volume of specialized considerations and, our humble work is an apology to the effort of each one, even here we must acknowledge that every man receives the influences he is due, being up to each heart to renew its own values, towards even higher accomplishments, for the determinism of God is of the Good, and everyone who truly surrenders to Good, will prevail. 

NASA and its experience about human behavior 

Here, Emmanuel’s thinking, if we understand well, is that certain names can have a special meaning to us and that ends up exerting some sort of influence over those who receive that name. Years ago, the world was shocked by the tragic death of Princess Diana. This name was worshiped by many, firstly because the Princess was person engaged in helping the needy, and secondly for the tragedy of her death.

Let’s see other example: the name Hitler. What do you think? The sheer mention of his name causes a great feeling of repulse, doesn’t it? Different from the name Diana, it brings us bad memories; that’s why we rarely see anyone with that name.

Recently we were listening to a radio show at the “Boa Nova” radio station, in which was said that NASA was doing a research on human behavior. The team of researchers placed in a room a few bottles filled with colored water the same color as whisky. The gathered a few volunteers and told them that in that room there were many bottles of whisky which they could drink as much as they wanted or were able to; having said that, they left the room to leave the volunteers more at ease. After some time, they came back and observed that, as odd as it may seem some of them were completely drunk, even testing positive for alcohol in their bloodstream. Therefore, like what happened in this experiment, it may occur in many situations that the “power of thought” causes such an event or situation, suggested by the person himself or somebody else. Wouldn’t that be the case of information being passed on by an astrologer? We think so.

We may conclude, from all of this, that the stars, for the energy they give off, undeniably exert influence on each other, as on the Earth, certain natural phenomena and certain materials absorb such energy radiations. But our behavior, our character and our destiny are a consequence of our past acquisitions or actions, that is, we receive influences from ourselves or, at the most, someone like us; not the stars. But that does not give us the right to prosecute or condemn those who believe in it, for it is our Christian duty to respect one another, and if today some have seen the light, we will all, someday see it.



(1) The precession of equinoxes triggers another change: the one that happens in the position of the signs of the Zodiac. The Earth revolving around the Sun in a year, as it moves forward, the Sun, each month, faces a constellation. These are in the number of twelve, namely: Lamb, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces. They are called zodiacal constellations, or signs of the Zodiac, and from a circle around the equator. According to the month of birth of an individual they’d say he or she was born under such and such sign; hence the prognostics of Astrology. But because of the precession of equinoxes, it happens that the months do not correspond to the same constellations. Someone born in the month of July is not a Leo, but a Cancer. The superstitious idea of the influence of signs falls to the ground. (Chap.V, nº 12.)

(2) The gradual displacement of isothermal lines, a phenomenon that science recognizes as positive as the displacement of the seas, is a material fact that supports this theory. (KARDEC, 1995, p. 181-183)


Bibliographical references:

KARDEC, A. A Gênese. Rio de Janeiro: FEB, 1995.

KARDEC, A. O Livro dos Espíritos. Araras, SP: IDE, 1987.

XAVIER, F. C. O Consolador. Rio de Janeiro: FEB, 1986.

CD-ROM - Enciclopédia Microsoft Encarta. 1993-1999.


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