A Rant about Astrology

F = Gm1m2/d2 -- approximate formula for the heaven's influence on us

I really can't add anything to the epigraph of this section. Compare the numbers: we're more influenced by sitting up than by an alignment of all planets. [When you sit up, your center of gravity is slightly farther from the center of the earth than it was. Even if all the planets lined up exactly, their combined pull would still be smaller than the change caused by sitting up.]

If you do believe in astrology - might I suggest that you're suggestible, or perhaps just plain gullible?

What's really interesting about astrology isn't that so many people believe, but why they believe. What is it that makes people believe things like this? It's a fascinating question, but I'm not inclined to research this now.

Pet peeve: newspapers actually foster this stuff by printing horoscopes. Their argument, I'm sure, would be "we're giving the people what they want". Hey, they also want titties and blood, but I don't see you giving them as much of that. Let's face it - it sells papers. Period.

[Some people might not recognize the formula above. It's Newton's formula for the approximate gravitational attraction between two bodies m1 and m2 separated by distance d. G is the gravitational constant, which is 6.673 × 10-11 cubic meters per kilogram per second squared. This formula is a non-relativistic approximation, but works well in most cases that do not involve extremely large masses or velocities approaching the speed of light.]

Last updated 2 July 1998
All contents ©1996-2002 Mark L. Irons

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