In search of self discovery

Savannah Workman

Looking up at the sky, the lights made of hot gas forming the outline of the big dipper and Orion’s belt makes one wonder how they got the name. Have the stars ever spoken? Can one look to the stars for questions, or perhaps answers?

For an astrologist, there is divine meaning behind the stars and what position they is in. It is a cosmic dance constantly twirling and intertwining in the night sky.

According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, astrology is the divination of the supposed influences of the stars and the planets on human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects. From this, people can understand that astrology suggests humans are studying something that is not in the physical, but in the spiritual, and how that connects with emotion.

Astrology is a tool for self discovery because the stars line up and form a circle that evolves into a pattern of stars. In a more human language, the stars are organized on a clock. The day people are born, as well as the time and  place, determine what part of this cycle they belong to. This is supposed to reveal personalized meanings and emotions. These 12 signs are called the zodiac.

How many people actually believe that the stars can dictate individual moods and feelings? Where is the history behind this idea? Can our destiny truly lie in the stars, or is this unreliable bologna that plays this generalizing game?

On debate.org, 57% voted yes, they believe that people’s personalities are affected by their zodiac sign. Why people believe in zodiac signs is because it gives people reassurance of the future, letting go of past struggles, and it can make all humans connected in a spiritual way. That leaves 43% saying no, like bologna, it is just deli meat. There are many that say there are no actual theories to test this, only math and calculated assumptions.

This is a recurring debate since the early times of our history. According to the American Federation of Astrologers, the Babylonians are known for creating astrology and then later teaching this to the Greeks in the early fourth century B.C. In search of higher knowledge, Plato, Aristotle and many others studied astrology. From the Greeks, astrology spread around the rest of the world.

When mapping out the stars, early Babylonian astrologers knew it took 12 lunar cycles (i.e. months) for the sun to turn to its original position. Progressing, they identified 12 constellations connected the progression of the seasons and assigned them names of certain animals or people.

Based on this interpretation to what is done today, there are certain stereotypes that follow can haunt a person when asked what their zodiac sign is. There will be talk of: “Cancers are cry babies,” or “Aries have hot heads with no impulse control.” In reality, this is an assumption about a person without really getting to know them.

Within each organized birth sign that people can be characterized as, there are good and bad aspects. Morphing and growing, Cancers can be great caregivers and extremely empathetic while Aries are capable of being passionate and forward thinking. Anything can be up to interpretation.

In any case, this idea forces us to learn about ourselves and our behavioral patterns while also beginning to understand another. Once we understand this, we take what sounds good to us. We connect with what relates to us. Then we try to relate to others. We aren’t the only ones looking up to the sky and noticing a beautiful starry night.

Edited by Adam White, Jessica Galvin