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Old 08-21-2009, 01:23 AM
 
2,255 posts, read 4,891,710 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
harry: If you mean that he is a no-nonsense kind of guy and loves to expose charlatans and tomfoolery, then I suppose that makes him close-minded in a way. What is this 'bitter agenda' of his you refer to?
I was curious about the same thing. What's the bitter agenda here ???

Personally I found his use of the live class participation to be very illustrative and effective as an excellent teaching tool. It was very enlightening and entertaining at the same time.
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Old 08-21-2009, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
17,848 posts, read 54,121,626 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
harry: If you mean that he is a no-nonsense kind of guy and loves to expose charlatans and tomfoolery, then I suppose that makes him close-minded in a way. What is this 'bitter agenda' of his you refer to?
<sigh> I have little hope of this making sense to a lot of the people reading. That said, I'll don my flame-proof armor and try to give a bit of explanation.

Randi has been in the same situation a lot of cops find themselves in. Cops who work with the dregs of humanity on a continuing basis have to work extremely hard to find a balance, to not consider ALL of humanity dregs. If they lose the battle, they become the type of a**hole little powerhungry jerk that you might have run across in a traffic stop or working security. You know they are trying to do their job, and yet the extremes they go to are outrageous.

Here is a current headline from his site:
""Quantum" Arguments Can't Explain Consciousness or the Supernatural"
It exemplifies how his POV is purely from Newtonian physics, and how he has mentally blocked anything that doesn't adhere to his fixed concept of reality.

There is a real philosophical issue involved with the whole concept of "free will" and probability. Without going into great depth, one of the positions that philosophers have put forth, with a lot of hard evidence, is that in a universe governed by strictly Newtonian laws, consciousness is an illusion, free will is an illusion, and probability is an illusion. Literally, EVERYTHING was preordained. EVERY effect has a cause. The cause may be minuscule, but it is still there. Randi HAS to be RANDI, because he had to be from the beginning of the universe. You HAVE to read what I'm writing, because it was pre-ordained at the beginning of the universe, and so on.

The exploration of the unknown involves a willingness to examine and inspect lots of false leads and false ideas to find the needle in the haystack that is true. Randi declares the entire haystack has no needle in it, without any more reason than he makes money at the task and has become as jaded as the cop who strip-searches dogs in sweaters, in case they have a crack pipe. He has become THAT over-the-top and ludicrous.

Take a read of his "Million dollar challenge to prove the paranormal"
Million Dollar Challenge FAQ

If you read critically, you'll find it is nothing more than a magician's forced card trick, designed to be unwinnable. In point of fact, ANY unexplored science that creates results IS currently paranormal. Arthur C. Clarke's old phrase "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." sums that up beautifully.

Randi speaks from hubris. He thinks that we are at the end point of science. Maybe he doesn't say it in so many words, and maybe he would even deny that idea, but the truth is that he is attempting to judge FUTURE science breakthroughs using a nineteenth century dogma. The equivalent is a knight in shining armor trying to dismiss the idea that a rifle could work. I've run across things that according to current theory shouldn't work, but I'm not blind enough to blank my vision when they DO work. Randi DOES blind his own vision. Intentionally.

Don't think I'm not a skeptic, because I'm probably more one than Randi is. There is great value in the examination and dismissal of crackpot ideas. That isn't to say that all seemingly crackpot ideas SHOULD be dismissed.

Hence my original comment in the thread "However, even if astrology doesn't work at all, it has value. Like the I Ching, like meditations, and like prayer, it can focus the mind on a single aspect of life. By doing that, it allows the mind to review, make connections, and start towards a deeper understanding of that area." Randi would totally miss that in his headstrong-over-heels attempt to prove himself right. Just because the color red doesn't mean anything to someone who is color blind, it doesn't necessarily follow that the color red is useless or doesn't exist.

I hope that makes some sense. Put a little differently, Randi's mode is a bit like a computer program. It can do some outstanding things, but it doesn't think or always make sense in a greater context.
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Old 08-21-2009, 12:58 PM
 
2 posts, read 4,238 times
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Astrology is scientifically and mathematically accurate- you just have to know where to look. First of all, most people are unaware that the popular books and signs are 30 degrees off. So technically, if your sun sign is gemini- then really you're taurus, and that's just how you express yourself. What's really important is your ascendant. You can read your own future if you chart your own stars. You'll need the place you're born, the exact time (within 3 minutes or the math isn't accurate), the date and several books. I only know how to calculate people's charts who were born in the United States. First of all, find the birth hour according to standard time (if you were born approximately April- October, you need to deduct one hour from the time of birth depending on daylight savings time unless you were born in Arizona-which doesn't go by daylight savings). Next, find the latitude and longitude of the birthplace (book-Table of Houses- The Roscicrucian Fellowship PO Box 713 Oceanside, CA 92054). The meridian that we use is 75 degrees in the United States. Calculate how many degrees east or west of 75 degrees the birthplace is. Example, if you were born in Oceanside, Ca, the latitude and longitude is 33 degrees N 117 degrees W, so subtract 75 from 117 which equals 42. So, put it all together- the birth hour according to standard time (using military time-24:00:00) Example, if you were born July 12, 1980 at 3:26 p.m., you would write it this way: 15:26:00 -1:00:00 (daylight savings) = 14:26:00. Then multiply the degrees by 4 minutes. 42 x 4=168 minutes. Write it as 2:48:00 (2 hours 48 minutes) and subtract it from birth hour if it's west of the 75th meridian, or add if it's east. This gives you the true local time of birth. 15:26:00- 1:00:00-2:48:00 = 11:38:00. Next you have to find out the siderial time at Greenwich for the noon previous to birth. Look in the book The American Ephemeris for the 20th century 1900-2000. I have the revised 5th edition- keep in mind that every sign in this book is 30 degrees off, so you will need to make your own calculations later on. Look up July 11, 1980 (since that's the noon prior) The siderial time is 7 18 12 so write it 7:18:12 add a correction of 10 seconds for each 15 degrees of longitude (add if west longitude, deduct if east) 117 divided by 15 =7.8 x 10 is approximately 78 seconds, so write it as 00:01:18. Anyway, it's a long involved process, but to make it short, find the interval between noon prior to birth and true local time of birth, add correction of 10 seconds per hour of interval, this will give you sidereal time at birthplace for birth hour. Find the nearest sidereal time in the Table of Houses (this is your ascendant- how other people see you). Then take true local time of birth, find out how many degrees east or west of Greenwich the longitude is, multiply that # by 4 minutes (add if west of longitude, deduct if east). This will give you Greenwich Mean Time (calculations in the book are based on GMT). Find the interval to the nearest noon and then find the permanent logarithm for this number. Plot a chart (360 degrees) with 12 houses with the ascendant on the cusp of the 1st house. Find the travel of the planets between the coming noon position (after GMT) and the prior noon position (before GMT). Take the travel within 24 hours, find the logarith of travel (add the permanent logarithm if GMT is p.m.- deduct if it's a.m.). That will give you the travel during interval and the position of the planet. Plot the planets on the chart and this will give you your natal chart. You can always plot the course of the planets at different times in your life as they affect your natal chart and affect things in your daily life. Just keep in mind that even with science and math, there are people who will still fight to the death their right to express their own belief systems (a Neptunian trait) that there is only one God and you're going to hell if you don't believe in Him and whatever they believe. Most people think that astrologers are quacks. But keep in mind that there is a purpose for them having those beliefs. Somehow we're all trying to overcome a weakness in our life, and for some, religion is the way to overcome this weakness. Faith and religion can give extreme power to accomplish many great things. We all have weaknesses to overcome in life and we're given talents to overcome those weaknesses. However, there is no merit whatsoever in the daily signs part of the newspaper. Astrology is such a specific and calculated science that there is no one answer for the masses like they portray in the paper. The paper should just be read for fun, nothing else.
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Old 08-21-2009, 03:54 PM
 
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Astrology is perfect, the problem is with the astrologers - they have no idea what they are talking about...
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:16 PM
 
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I don't believe in astrology, at least not for personal fortune telling. There are not enough variations in astrology to give all 6 billion people on earth unique answers. If astrology really works, then babies that are born in the same hospital at the same time would have the same fortunes - hardly true.
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Old 08-22-2009, 08:25 PM
 
6,039 posts, read 9,455,163 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirron View Post
Being a soul who craves logic, I've been looking for links between FACT and Astrology. Sometimes, for fun I will read my horoscope, and every once in a while it is frightfully accurate. How much faith do you put in astrology, and why?
Absolutely zero.
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Old 08-22-2009, 09:17 PM
 
5,090 posts, read 8,064,121 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twilight421 View Post
Astrology is scientifically and mathematically accurate- you just have to know where to look. First of all, most people are unaware that the popular books and signs are 30 degrees off. So technically, if your sun sign is gemini- then really you're taurus, and that's just how you express yourself. What's really important is your ascendant. You can read your own future if you chart your own stars.

Sounds impressive. And I don't doubt mathematics are involved, although I admit to being skeptical as to how scientific it is. Regardless, I am curious about it. So, it all depends on the alignment of the stars and planets on a specific date at a specific time at a specific location.

- How exactly does the position of sun, moon, stars and planets, etc., determine a person's future?
- What kind of force or forces are involved? Gravity? Light? Radiation? Something else?
- Are there only certain stars and planets that have any influence?
- Why do the constellations make a difference.
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Old 08-26-2009, 03:36 PM
 
Location: where the moss is taking over the villages
2,178 posts, read 4,844,224 times
Reputation: 1237
Talking personality traits in the star positions

Quote:
Originally Posted by sirron View Post
Being a soul who craves logic, I've been looking for links between FACT and Astrology. Sometimes, for fun I will read my horoscope, and every once in a while it is frightfully accurate. How much faith do you put in astrology, and why?
I don't put any weight into the horoscopes published in papers. I've always loved astrology. I love doing charts to see the postion of the planets at birth. The positions seem to reveal so much about people's strengths & weaknesses, which then may propel them in one direction or another.

Armed with the information on a person's weaknesses & strengths, I can do a compatibility chart & see how the two interact. That to me is one of my main fascinations.

I find the much older, vintage astrology books offer little synastry secrets to look for in a chart. I've made up amateur charting for over 50 friends & noticed right on but rare trends, such as the mark of "fortune"...

It seems the horoscopes are what give astrology a bad rap with people who want to know if it holds any water. When they say it's over generalized, they're right -> if you only looked at the sun position & nothing else like the other closest stars. Even the further stars show restricitions that a general horoscope will never reveal.

Have a smiley day!

Kate

Last edited by sarahkate_m; 08-26-2009 at 03:38 PM.. Reason: run on sentence >< is hard to save
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Old 08-27-2009, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Clearwater, FL
210 posts, read 412,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twilight421 View Post
Astrology is scientifically and mathematically accurate-
I stopped there since your wall of text would have destroyed me if I attempted to read it any further.

I am sure no matter what you said after that would back up a silly claim like that.


Penn & Teller did an excellent episode about Astrology on their show Bull*****. Everyone should check it out. I am sure there is a site out there that has it up and can stream it for your pleasure.
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:02 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,070 posts, read 8,981,936 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgt04 View Post
I second this
I third it!
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