Monday, 23 February 2009

Governed by the stars

I try to avoid controversial opinions when writing in here, so I hope I am on safe ground when I say that astrology in rubbish.  The stars, their relative positions in the sky, and which planets are crossing over them, do not predict the future for any one particular person.  Your star sign does not determine the minute details of your personality.  I hope that’s not controversial :-)

But – I’ve made two assertions there, and I want to explore them a little more.  Stars can help us predict the future in some regards –and maybe your star sign does affect how you turn out in life to some degree.  Bear with me, I’ve not gone mad.

Predicting where the stars are is quite hard.  The positions of the planets are slightly easier to work out, and it’s been done to a fair level of accuracy.  Now that we know the orbits of the planets, comets and the trajectories of asteroids and meteors we can start to predict the things we’ll see in the night sky for many years into the future.  Sure – it’s not as exciting as successfully predicting that someone in particular will win the lottery next Saturday – but wind the clock back a few hundred years, and someone with the power to say “on 12th January, three years hence, a great fire ball will be seen in the sky” and be correct would have held considerable influence…

The second assertion – that star sign can influence personality – needs some explanation I feel.  I’m UK-based so going to talk about the seasons as they happen in the UK – if you’re the other side of the world, then you can just switch the month names around.

Here in the UK, the school year starts in September and the general rule is that you start school when you are aged 4.  So if your birthday is in September, you’ll be very nearly 5 when you start school – but if your birthday is in July, you’ll be only-just 4 when you start.  Here in the UK, you stay in the same school year as you started in – being held back a year isn’t at all common.  So that means that if you are born in September, you will spend the whole of your education (until the age of 21) up to a year older than some of the people in the same lessons/lectures as you.  Similarly, if you’re born in July, you’re going to spend your time with people up to a year older than you. 

This is all happening during the most formative years of our lives – when our personalities are larger laid down and our aspirations and fears are cemented in our heads.  That’s not to say that the personality doesn’t continue to change after this time – but the fundamentals of our personality do get laid down during childhood (those parts which aren’t genetic, anyway).  To always be the oldest one at school will be being (on average) one of the tallest, one of the biggest, one of the first to hit puberty, one of the first for your voice to break, etc. etc.  and that is going to put you in a certain position and inform the way you feel about your position relative to those around you.  Similarly for the people at the other end of the school year.

During school years, the bulk of our social interaction happens with those we’re at school with.  It’s where most of our friends are, and where we learn and honed our social skills.  This also means that for those people born in August, their birthday will always be outside the school year and so whilst they will see friends on their birthday, it won’t be the same experience as for those people born during the school year.

Similarly, if you’re born near Christmas (or other important days in whichever country you’re brought up in) then your birthday will be coloured by the proximity to that.

But a birthday is only one day of the year.  For those babies born in summer, the first few months of life will be spent in sunlight, sleeping with light peeping around the edge of the curtains even at night, and being taken out into the fresh air regularly.  For those babies born in winter, the first few months of life will be spent hiding indoors away from the cold and only going out when necessary – even then, outside will be a cold place with few people.  The days will be short, and sleep will be in the dark for the first few months at least.

Even the year you’re born in can make a difference.  A baby born in the midst of a recession will find that, whilst being clothed and fed, they may not have as many toys, nor as many days out as a baby born during an economic boom.  A baby born in a year with a heatwave will get the effect of being born in summer – but amplified.  A baby born in a cold year will get the winter effect amplified.

I could go on – but I shalln’t. 

So the year in which you’re born, and even the month in which you’re born, will definitely have an effect on your experiences during your formative years.  And it’s undoubtedly the case that you’ll take those experiences forward with you into adult life in some form.  Maybe babies born in November will prefer sleeping in the dark when they are adults, and those born in May will prefer sleeping with the light on.  Maybe those born in winter will feel the cold less than those born in summer.  I’m sure that my simple conclusions aren’t true – but I’m sure there are traits common in summer babies and traits common in winter babies.

But let’s finish this with a bit of straight talking on Astrology.  Whilst the month your born in may statistically affect the way you view some things in life, it doesn’t affect everyone in the same way, nor does it affect whether you’re going to meet a strange who’ll change your life tomorrow. 

No comments:

Post a Comment