‘And God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to separate the day from the night; and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years.”‘ Genesis 1: 14
Astrology, the notion that the stars and planets hold significance for human life, exists in most cultures. It is evident in Stone Age lunar calendars dating back to 30,000 BCE. Today, 90 per cent of Indians consult astrologers about their forthcoming marriages while over 50 per cent of people in the West read their horoscopes in newspapers or magazines. How has this pre-Christian, pre-scientific view of the cosmos survived to the present day and what is its enduring appeal?
Astrology’s techniques and philosophical foundations are complex and there is no single tradition. Astrology may be seen as science, art, religion, craft or superstition. For most adherents it is either a path to self-understanding or an organizing principle that helps give purpose to an otherwise meaningless world. Nicholas Campion explores astrology’s past and present, its claims and appeal, and explains what astrologers really believe.