Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Letter to TD

Hi TD,

I've read your articles and I wonder why you want me to see them, because, as you may have already surmized, I do not support this sort of research. I do not think it is either necessary or useful to try to fit astrology into standard theory, despite the efforts of Percy Seymour and to some extent Theodore Landscheidt, and others, who BTW are not astrologers.

Standard theory is a hodge-podge with many gaps and counter-intuitive assumptions. Why should Newtonian gravity act at a distance with no causal mechanism and what is the physical mechanism whereby an electron can be both a particle and a wave? Most scientists don't bother themselves with these deeper questions because they know that the research they are doing works anyway. When it comes to astrology, why should similar questions concerning the physical or causal links between planets and individuals suddenly become so important that astrology is labeled a pseudoscience?

My friend, your intentions are good, but I think you have bought into the burden of proof fallacy. You describe various physical mechanisms that might go together in some way as a causal chain of influences to explain astrology, but there are holes in the sequence. And there are always people, skeptics like Geoffrey Dean, who will find or simply imagine more and more holes – the fallacy of many questions. Holes in a theory can be major distractions. That is why in normal science the puzzling holes and imponderable assumptions in theories are largely ignored as long as the theory works. Why then should astrology be any different?

Astrology does not work according to standard theory, because standard theory does not accept the principles of symmetry upon which astrology is built. "As above, so below" means that there is a symmetry of behavior between the microcosmic world of the individual and the macrocosmic planetary environment surrounding the individual. Astrologers just accept this. It's a feature of nature. We observe it. It just is.

There is nothing stopping astrology from being scientifically studied to get relevant results that support the goals of astrology. Michel Gauquelin and Vernon Clark, among others, have already demonstrated this. I strongly advise you to use the obvious paradigm shift to extract yourself from the rational fallacies that you are now entangled in and to follow the constructive lead of those who have gone before and found interesting things with their science.

Best wishes,