Astrology and Superstition

Charles Carter’s Psychological Encyclopedia of Astrology delves into the relationship between astrological beliefs and personality traits, offering insights into how people perceive and engage with the world around them. One interesting observation is that individuals who readily embrace beliefs and ideas might be associated with a weak Mercury placement in their birth chart, particularly if it falls within a water sign. This notion suggests that Mercury’s influence, symbolizing communication and critical thinking, might be less pronounced in these individuals, making them more susceptible to accepting ideas without thorough scrutiny.  However, Carter also emphasizes the significance of considering the astrological houses, specifically highlighting the 12th house, which holds connections to the subconscious, hidden influences, and matters beyond the conscious awareness. The presence of water signs in these houses could further intensify the proclivity for accepting beliefs without strong evidence.

In the realm of superstitious beliefs, Carter points out a trend where Water and Fire signs tend to dominate over Earth and Air signs. This observation aligns with the emotional and passionate qualities often associated with Water and Fire signs, which could contribute to a predisposition towards engaging with concepts that evoke strong feelings and intuitive responses. Additionally,  the 9th house’s connection to religious beliefs and superstitions highlights the potential astrological basis for why some individuals are more inclined to hold superstitious convictions related to spirituality and higher truths.  Neptune, the planet associated with illusion, spirituality, and subtle influences, is brought into the equation as well. Carter suggests that Neptune’s effects might manifest in more nuanced ways, possibly leading individuals towards beliefs that are less grounded in reality but still hold a strong attraction due to their mysterious nature.

Contrary to common misconceptions, studying astrology does not necessarily require extraordinary intuition or psychic abilities. Instead, it can be viewed as an intellectual pursuit that involves understanding the complex relationship between celestial positions and human characteristics.  Despite its detractors, astrology provides insights into personality traits and potential future trends by offering a framework to analyze how the positions of celestial bodies might correlate with individual experiences. Skeptics of astrology often categorize it as an unscientific practice, labeling it as ancient superstition or pseudoscience. These terms reflect the skepticism that surrounds astrology’s validity as a predictive tool. However, it’s worth noting that many people still find value in astrological interpretations, drawn to the centuries-old tradition that suggests connections between celestial events and human life.

The historical belief that lunar phases influence various aspects of life, such as planting crops, demonstrates the enduring influence of celestial bodies on cultural practices. For instance, the New Moon being seen as an opportune time for planting is a practice rooted in the idea that the moon’s energy supports growth and expansion. Similarly, the caution against sleeping under moonlight due to its perceived effects on one’s appearance or mood reflects the longstanding belief in the moon’s power to impact personal well-being.

Earth has a longing for what he calls the spiritual, although this is frequently expressed as a secret fascination or “belief” in ghosts, psychism, and other para-psychological phenomena without any understanding of the implications inherent in the existence of this sort of “supernatural” world. He will often be found pursuing a love-object who personifies his idea of the medium, the inspiration, the guide who can in some way share with him the secrets of the cosmos and alleviate the dull ache within. Unfortunately, those who are in touch with the inner mysteries cannot parcel them out like bread and cheese, because such intuitive experience is wholly individual, intensely personal and cannot be explained in the concrete form which earth likes his explanations to assume.” By Liz Greene

Superstitions, rooted in the beliefs and practices of bygone eras, offer an intriguing glimpse into human history and psychology. They often emerge from a fundamental fear of the unknown and an innate desire to exert some measure of control over the uncertainties of life. Throughout history, people have devised a myriad of magical charms, rituals, and spells as remedies to fend off malevolent forces or to seek protection and good fortune. These superstitions have persisted through generations and continue to intrigue and influence many individuals today.

The term “superstition” typically encompasses a wide range of irrational beliefs or practices that lack empirical evidence or logical reasoning. Many of these beliefs have become woven into cultural fabric, passing down from older generations to the newer ones. They are often referred to as “old wives’ tales,” reflecting their association with traditional wisdom that might not always align with contemporary knowledge. While some superstitions might seem whimsical or unfounded, they often carry a deep cultural significance. They can offer insights into historical events, societal norms, and psychological tendencies. Superstitions related to luck, protection, and avoiding misfortune often reveal a shared human quest for security and positive outcomes. For example, the belief in knocking on wood to ward off bad luck might have originated from the idea that spirits reside in trees and could offer protection.

Interestingly, many superstitions persist even in modern times. Despite advancements in science and technology, these beliefs continue to resonate with individuals because they address primal emotions and instincts. Whether it’s avoiding walking under ladders, carrying lucky talismans, or refraining from opening umbrellas indoors, these rituals offer a sense of control and assurance in an unpredictable world.

The concept of “fate” is another complex aspect to consider in the realm of superstition. Believing in fate suggests that events and outcomes are predetermined, often beyond an individual’s control. Some argue that this belief can diminish the importance of personal agency and responsibility, as it implies that one’s choices and efforts might be inconsequential against a predetermined course of events. This perspective aligns with the notion that fate can be seen as a form of superstition, in that it relies on a belief in forces beyond the observable and measurable. Critics of the belief in fate often emphasize the importance of free will and the capacity for individuals to shape their own destinies. They argue that attributing events solely to fate can undermine the drive to actively engage with life’s challenges and pursue personal growth and achievements.

In conclusion, superstitions are an intriguing aspect of human culture and psychology. They stem from a primal need to confront uncertainty and exert control over the unpredictable aspects of life. Superstitions, often passed down through generations, continue to coexist with modern knowledge and technological advancements. The belief in fate, while different in nature, can also be considered a form of superstition, as it involves surrendering agency to forces beyond direct observation. Balancing these beliefs with a recognition of personal agency and critical thinking contributes to a more nuanced understanding of how humans navigate the mysteries of existence.