Astrology maddens me, especially when generally sensible people treat is as harmless fun. Back in 2006, I said: “astrology is utter nonsense, and … human life in general would be better if everyone could completely and finally reject it as bunk”.
I just learned another way in which the practice goes beyond being a harmless form of entertainment. Not only have people with way too much power sometimes put credence in it (Ronald Reagan is a frightening example), but apparently having an “unfavourable astrological chart” is a sufficient impediment in the Indian marriage market as to justify specialist dating sites for those thus afflicted. Including horoscope details in matching algorithms is similarly questionable.
Richard Dawkins was right to note that “a constellation is of no more significance than a patch of curiously shaped damp on the bathroom ceiling” as each is “a miscellaneous set of stars all at different distances from us, which have no connection with each other except that they constitute a (meaningless) pattern when seen from a certain (not particularly special) place in the galaxy (here)”.
If people remain unable to internalize that, it doesn’t leave one with a lot of hope that we will do better on more important matters.