Evidence Proving The Validity Of Astrology

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#61
But we must not confuse this [exploration of physical influences….] with the current socially acceptable form of bigotry that seems to entitle the human beings who believe in it to prejudge the character of others based solely on their dates of birth.”
― Robert P. Crease, The Great Equations: Breakthroughs in Science from Pythagoras to Heisenberg
Bigotry? Who's the bigot here, one wonders? In fact, I'd describe Crease's attitude to astrology as highly arrogant. But like it or not, he's seeing astrology from a scientific point of view, and if any human form of thinking is arrogant, then it's science.

Ignorance about the likes of astrology is all the more reason to keep an open mind about such things.
 

INT21

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#62
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#63
In what way is science 'arrogant' ?
Let me count the ways...……..

In the first instance, science rubbishes astrology and forms of belief, apparently unaware that it, too, is based on nothing more than belief. By its own admission, science can prove nothing. It can only disprove. As far as I am aware, it has not yet "disproved" astrology.

In addition, science does not admit personal experience of the individual. Thus we lesser beings i.e. non-scientists, must look not to our own experience but to science as the ultimate authority on how the world works.

These two are only some of the ways in which science displays arrogance.
 

INT21

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#64
Let me count the ways...……..

In the first instance, science rubbishes astrology and forms of belief, apparently unaware that it, too, is based on nothing more than belief. By its own admission, science can prove nothing. It can only disprove. As far as I am aware, it has not yet "disproved" astrology.

In addition, science does not admit personal experience of the individual. Thus we lesser beings i.e. non-scientists, must look not to our own experience but to science as the ultimate authority on how the world works.

These two are only some of the ways in which science displays arrogance.

Science does not say that anything is the final definitive 'thing'. It say that , 'as far as we can tell by all the investigating and experimenting we have carried out to date, this is our best shot at what the reality of this subject is'. But it allows for anyone to come along and say' No, you missed this out' and they can offer a theory that can completely demolish the current understanding'. It is an incremental accumulation of knowledge. No one has to believe it. They are always welcome to 'make a better mouse trap' if they can.

There is nothing pleases a scientist more than being able to demolish some grey beard's theory.

You say no one has disproved astrology. Has anyone proved it. And how would one recognise this proof ?
 

escargot

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#65
From t'Guardian - a very interesting read:

I was an astrologer – here’s how it really works, and why I had to stop

Customers marvelled at my psychic abilities but was that really what was going on when I told their fortune?
Long story short, it's a mixture of observation, amateur psychology and general knowledge. Plus, the same problems recur because we're all humans together.

The writer became so good at it that one customer fell downstairs in shock!
 
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#66
But it allows for anyone to come along and say' No, you missed this out' and they can offer a theory that can completely demolish the current understanding'.
I disagree. To come along and say "No", you cannot be just anyone, you first of all have to be a scientist. You then have to publish a paper which is accepted or rejected under the peer review system. The peer review system is, in effect, the way science polices itself. It uses scientists rather than independent outside agencies to police itself. (This, I think, is unhealthy.)


You say no one has disproved astrology. Has anyone proved it. And how would one recognise this proof ?
Not quite. I said that science has not disproved astrology. Science works by positing theories, none of which can be proved. Scientific theories can only be disproved.

My take on astrology is that people have to make up their own minds as to whether it is real or not. To do that, one must behave as if it is true and proceed from there. If astrology is not true, then I think that person will, through time, come to that understanding for themselves.
 

INT21

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#67
I disagree. To come along and say "No", you cannot be just anyone, you first of all have to be a scientist. You then have to publish a paper which is accepted or rejected under the peer review system. The peer review system is, in effect, the way science polices itself. It uses scientists rather than independent outside agencies to police itself. (This, I think, is unhealthy.)
.
But you can be just anybody.

One does not need a Phd to be able to think.

Was not Herr Einstein a clerk before he had his big ideas ?
 
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#68
But you can be just anybody.
I still disagree. Admittedly I am not a scientist, but I can see for myself through my own eyes and through personal experience and through talking to or listening to scientists what goes on. As I mentioned, scientific papers are vetted for publication via the Peer Review System in which published scientists assess submitted papers for publication. They do not let just any old paper through. It must be scientifically sound.

One does not need a Phd to be able to think.
I was not suggesting that. What I am claiming is that scientists via the peer review system think you need a PhD to think.

Was not Herr Einstein a clerk before he had his big ideas ?
I believe he studied maths and physics in some sort of polytechnik with a view to becoming a teacher. His grades in maths and physics were, apparently, exceptional. After 2 years job hunting he eventually found work in the Swiss Patents Office. Now, to get a job in the Swiss Patents Office as a Grade III Examiner, his science must have had to be good. In addition, working there he had all sorts of access to the latest scientific papers and the latest scientific thinking etc. It is therefore no surprise that he published his first scientific papers within about 3 years of starting work there. In other words, working at the Patents Office gave him the leg up that he needed to further his scientific career.

So, even if his academic career was more unusual, I would have to say that Einstein was definitely a scientist when he had his first papers published,
 

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#69
"My take on astrology is that people have to make up their own minds as to whether it is real or not. To do that, one must behave as if it is true and proceed from there. If astrology is not true, then I think that person will, through time, come to that understanding for themselves. "

So if some people think astrology is real, and some don't, where does that leave us? As Lincoln said, you can fool some of the people all the time.
 

INT21

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#70
In addition, working there he had all sorts of access to the latest scientific papers and the latest scientific thinking etc. It is therefore no surprise that he published his first scientific papers within about 3 years of starting work there. In other words, working at the Patents Office gave him the leg up that he needed to further his scientific career.

So, even if his academic career was more unusual, I would have to say that Einstein was definitely a scientist when he had his first papers published,
And these days anyone with a computer connected to the web has access that Einstein could only have dreamed of.

I feel that your argument may have stood up in the last century, But not today.
 
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#71
So if some people think astrology is real, and some don't, where does that leave us? As Lincoln said, you can fool some of the people all the time.
I guess I have a problem with people who take it upon themselves to dictate to others what they should believe. I believe that people ought, and indeed NEED, to have the freedom to be able to make up their own minds about astrology, just as they are given the freedom (by and large) to make up their own minds about religion.

I believe that a healthy mind is perfectly capable of thinking things out for itself, given time and space to do so.
 
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#72
And these days anyone with a computer connected to the web has access that Einstein could only have dreamed of.
Perhaps. But wouldn't they first need to be a scientist in order to make sense of scientific papers? (If that is what you were meaning with reference to computer access.)
 

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#73
Perhaps. But wouldn't they first need to be a scientist in order to make sense of scientific papers? (If that is what you were meaning with reference to computer access.)
Not really. If you have an even half decent grasp of maths and basic physics, the rest you can learn as you progress.

If you think about it, when people go on these various further education course etc, they are, along with the important stuff, taught a lot they really don't need to know all at once.
My own technique is to learn what you need to do the job in hand. Then build on that as required.

Most papers are quite understandable, it is the technical aspects that get tricky; particularly when they invoke high level maths. Much of the rest is just looking at someone's idea from a different perspective.

INT21.
 
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#74
Not really. If you have an even half decent grasp of maths and basic physics, the rest you can learn as you progress. …………………………………...Most papers are quite understandable, it is the technical aspects that get tricky; particularly when they invoke high level maths..
Have you ever tried to get a scientific paper published yourself?

So, surely scientific papers are not that easy to understand if they invoke high level maths? With your maths and physics, how would you get on with a paper, on, say, biochemistry?
 

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#75
Have you ever tried to get a scientific paper published yourself?

So, surely scientific papers are not that easy to understand if they invoke high level maths? With your maths and physics, how would you get on with a paper, on, say, biochemistry?
Not all subject require higher maths.

And biochemistry is essentially electronics when you boil it all down. The action of very small electric fields within the chemistry.

Once you get down amongst the Quarks it is pretty much the same thing. But these days one does need to specialise in some narrow field to become famous.

The day of the general purpose all-round 'renaissance man' are more or less done.

But I do feel you are digging to make the situation more difficult than it need be.

If you take out a subscription to 'Science', you will get a feel of what you need to learn to progress.
 
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#76
But I do feel you are digging to make the situation more difficult than it need be.

If you take out a subscription to 'Science', you will get a feel of what you need to learn to progress.
I am "digging" in order to explore the situation for myself to aid understanding and to get a picture of what is going on. The points you are raising are certainly making me think, but you do not yet convince.
 

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#77
By digging I mean using a lot of time to attain a level of knowledge of a subject that you may not need a first.

For eample, to have a reasonable grasp of basic electronics you don't need to be fully conversant with 'hole theory'. In fact it can confuse you and make things more difficult than they need be.
 

Frideswide

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#78
So, surely scientific papers are not that easy to understand if they invoke high level maths? With your maths and physics, how would you get on with a paper, on, say, biochemistry?

I speak as someone who was removed from a numeracy programme because I was so far adrift they said they couldn't help.

I pre-read higher education theses (and the occasional dissertation) for logic bombs, common sense and general up-to-snuff-ness. I can deal with anything except the highest level theoretical maths and physics.

I'm not sure how this fits in with your assertion @littlebrowndragon ?
 
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#79
I speak as someone who was removed from a numeracy programme because I was so far adrift they said they couldn't help.

I pre-read higher education theses (and the occasional dissertation) for logic bombs, common sense and general up-to-snuff-ness. I can deal with anything except the highest level theoretical maths and physics.

I'm not sure how this fits in with your assertion @littlebrowndragon ?
All I can say is that if I attempted a university advanced-level physics text on, say, optics or quantum theory - or any intermediate/advanced scientific text at all - then I would not understand it. Not at first. However, I would read the text like a novel i.e. I would not study it, and given enough time and enough further reading, I would in the end begin to take it in.

Despite being a maths teacher with a university degree in maths, there is many a senior secondary/high school maths text I do not understand in full e.g. certain mathematical proofs contained therein leave me mystified. The reason for this is quite simple. The authors work not from understanding, but from memory. Because they work from memory, they frequently miss out vital steps in mathematical proofs. Because they work from memory, they do not spot the errors and correct them before publication. Clearly, when vital steps are omitted, then understanding proofs becomes difficult. All textbooks at whatever level contain such omissions, this because people, including academics, primarily work from memory.
 

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#80
How does this fit with your assertion that


So, surely scientific papers are not that easy to understand if they invoke high level maths? With your maths and physics, how would you get on with a paper, on, say, biochemistry?
 

INT21

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#81
How does this fit with your assertion that
I also wondered, lbd, how you square 'Despite being a maths teacher with a university degree in maths,' with claiming an apparent ignorance of maths.

Please clear this point for us .
 
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#82
I also wondered, lbd, how you square 'Despite being a maths teacher with a university degree in maths,' with claiming an apparent ignorance of maths.

Please clear this point for us .

As I explained in my last post, the issue is about the reliance on memory rather than on understanding. Academics rely entirely on memory and so, therefore, must their students.

As to "ignorance" of maths, well, there's plenty of maths that I have forgotten. What's so unusual about that? The issue is not about my remembering trivial mathematical detail, the issue is about textbook authors' dependence on memory. So, when I read a proof in a textbook which has been written from memory, as they all are, and there are steps missing, then this renders the proofs un-intelligible. How on earth are students going to understand the proofs when they are un-intelligible?

And this all still leaves me puzzled as to your claims that biochemistry is basically just electronics, as, I think you also said, was quantum theory. Is advanced optics basically just electronics too?
 
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#83
I also wondered, lbd, how you square 'Despite being a maths teacher with a university degree in maths,' with claiming an apparent ignorance of maths.

Please clear this point for us .

I do not wish to cause offence, INT2, but there are a few pertinent points I wish to make.

First, I am an extremely experienced teacher. As such, I have heard your “voice” before. It is very familiar to me. It is over-confident. It makes sweeping generalisations etc, etc. I learned very quickly to associate it with poor students. So, take this as a friendly warning. I am not the only person experienced enough to know that this voice is a voice of weakness. In particular, I warn against going into the workplace with this voice. For example, being blasé about publishing scientific papers to any decent employer would betray ignorance and inexperience and to any employer that did listen to you, in a very short time s/he would be hot on your heals looking for the first of your publications. You should know that the vast majority of working scientists never publish anything at all – at least in the UK and in, probably, the rest of Europe. The situation is different in the USA. This makes the vast majority of scientists in the US a pain in the neck to every other scientist who has to wade through their, at best, trivial and pointless publications in order to ferret out the odd paper that does have some substance.

Now, if you wish any more information concerning scientific publications, do ask. OK, I am a teacher, but sitting right next to me is my sister who is a published physicist

Finally, I know that personally, even with my level of education, I would not understand a scientific paper (even if it were written by an articulate scientist, which is a rarity). Therefore I know perfectly well that you couldn’t. And as my sister says, she couldn’t understand most of the papers written in her own field because they were so badly written. She was called upon for peer review from time to time and in the light of how badly scientific papers are in general written, she used to have only the vaguest grasp of what was being presented but would make a rough judgement of the paper and grade it for the publishers. Again, the point I am making is that the vast majority of scientific papers are so badly written that it is hard to tell what they really are about except in the broadest of terms. The world of scientific publishing is not like sitting an exam and you pass or fail according to merit. No, not at all is it like that. It is a very complex world full of ins and outs and all sorts of pitfalls, and it comes with all the bad practices associated with any competitive sport.
 

INT21

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#85
Littlebrowndragon,

No offense taken.

I find so many inconsistencies in you post I don't know where to start.

But I'm working on it ;)

I'll start by re-reading all your posts.

I believe it's called due diligence.

Better than relying on memory; wouldn't you agree ?

INT21
 
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INT21

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#86
I do not wish to cause offence, INT2, but there are a few pertinent points I wish to make.

First, I am an extremely experienced teacher. As such, I have heard your “voice” before. It is very familiar to me. It is over-confident. It makes sweeping generalisations etc, etc. I learned very quickly to associate it with poor students. So, take this as a friendly warning. I am not the only person experienced enough to know that this voice is a voice of weakness. In particular, I warn against going into the workplace with this voice. For example, being blasé about publishing scientific papers to any decent employer would betray ignorance and inexperience and to any employer that did listen to you, in a very short time s/he would be hot on your heals looking for the first of your publications. You should know that the vast majority of working scientists never publish anything at all – at least in the UK and in, probably, the rest of Europe. The situation is different in the USA. This makes the vast majority of scientists in the US a pain in the neck to every other scientist who has to wade through their, at best, trivial and pointless publications in order to ferret out the odd paper that does have some substance.

Now, if you wish any more information concerning scientific publications, do ask. OK, I am a teacher, but sitting right next to me is my sister who is a published physicist

Finally, I know that personally, even with my level of education, I would not understand a scientific paper (even if it were written by an articulate scientist, which is a rarity). Therefore I know perfectly well that you couldn’t. And as my sister says, she couldn’t understand most of the papers written in her own field because they were so badly written. She was called upon for peer review from time to time and in the light of how badly scientific papers are in general written, she used to have only the vaguest grasp of what was being presented but would make a rough judgement of the paper and grade it for the publishers. Again, the point I am making is that the vast majority of scientific papers are so badly written that it is hard to tell what they really are about except in the broadest of terms. The world of scientific publishing is not like sitting an exam and you pass or fail according to merit. No, not at all is it like that. It is a very complex world full of ins and outs and all sorts of pitfalls, and it comes with all the bad practices associated with any competitive sport.
Interesting.

Firstly, how do you select the reading matter for your students ?

And secondly, could you direct us to the published works of your sister. As a physicist her work would be of interest to us.

Isn't that so , Escargot ?

You do know, Littlebrowndragon, that Escargot's son works (or did work) at CERN ?

INT21.

(I already sense Frideswide's hand creeping toward the big red button )
 

Frideswide

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#87
(I already sense Frideswide's hand creeping toward the big red button )
Wrong.

This sort of comment is unhelpful as well as inaccurate. If you have problems with something then talk to one of the staff in PM or on the appropriate thread. Please do not clutter the thread up with snark/snide or temperature raising flim-flam.

Frides
 

INT21

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#88
So it's going to be one of those nights.

Ok

Littlebrowndragon,

What field do you teach in ?

Re :

...She was called upon for peer review from time to time and in the light of how badly scientific papers are in general written, she used to have only the vaguest grasp of what was being presented but would make a rough judgement of the paper and grade it for the publishers. ...

Do you consider it fair to pass judgement on a persons paper if she had only the vaguest grasp of it's content ?
 
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INT21

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#89
I do not wish to cause offence, INT2, but there are a few pertinent points I wish to make.

First, I am an extremely experienced teacher. As such, I have heard your “voice” before. It is very familiar to me. It is over-confident. It makes sweeping generalisations etc, etc. I learned very quickly to associate it with poor students. So, take this as a friendly warning. I am not the only person experienced enough to know that this voice is a voice of weakness. In particular, I warn against going into the workplace with this voice.


Finally, I know that personally, even with my level of education, I would not understand a scientific paper (even if it were written by an articulate scientist, which is a rarity). Therefore I know perfectly well that you couldn’t.
The arrogance of the above statements, coming from someone who does not have the foggiest of ideas of who I am, Is truly breathtaking.

No offense intended, of course.

INT21.
 

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#90
I know a bunch of academics, including people who were at CERN. The whole "working from memory"-thing sounds odd to me as well.
 
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