Astrology hurts for real
#1
My first hand experience that astrology hurts for real. Cannot give out exact details but suffice it to know that a sweet little girl's heart has been broken due to belief in pseudo science. And that too in the 21st century in a metrop city. It is one thing to talk for and against these practices and people can justify anything they want to believe in, but nobody can mend a little girl's broken heart.

Shame on astrologers and their followers if this is what they are proud of.

Even in religious texts, I am sure there is no forgiveness for breaking someone's heart.
And that much even an atheist like me understands, so what is the use of people going to temples and churches and talking about god when most believers themselves don't understand the first thing about human happiness.
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#2
Astrology can be said to have no place in public discourse if one were to apply the so-called Socratic triple filter: Is the news true? Is the news good? Is the news useful? Astrological predictions are seldom if ever stated with precision that allows verification of truth, are worse than useless for that very reason and cause real harm because they can become self-fulfilling prophecies and serve to sanctify prejudice. The forum thread 'Ground rules for evaluation of astrological claims' enlists some criteria for performing a scientific evaluation of astrological claims.

On the misleading and effectively malicious influence of astrology on human behavior, Paul the Octopus is a relevant case study here. Here is an article by a marine biologist offering alternative, and simpler and more plausible, explanations for the seemingly oracular behavior of the octopus. Here is a post from 'The World According to Xenocrates' which explains how making such oracular pronouncements public in a setting where the actual players are susceptible to them, can be a pernicious influence. So, even something as seemingly laughable as animal oracles is not devoid of consequences of real harm.

Perhaps the most egregiously malicious instance of self-fulfilling prophecies in the Indian context is the so-called maanglik condition in Indian astrology, where a person with such an astrological configuration supposedly will have difficulty getting married, and is actually made to have difficulty getting married thanks to institutionalized prejudice arising from this very belief!

So far, Nirmukta articles on the topic of astrology have emphasized largely on the absence of evidence for the truth of astrological claims, and it will help if these articles are complemented by others that provide case studies of the actual harm caused by belief in astrology.
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