The concept of the zodiac originated in Babylonian astrology, and was later influenced by Hellenistic culture. According to astrology, celestial phenomena relate to human activity on the principle of 'as above, so below', so that the signs are held to represent characteristic modes of expression. There are 12 zodiac signs, and each sign has its own strengths and weaknesses, its own specific traits, desires and attitude towards life and people.By analyzing the projection of the position of planets, and the Sun and the Moon on the Ecliptic at the moment of birth. Astrology can give us a glimpse of a person's basic characteristics, preferences, flaws and fears.
As I was sitting in math class the other day, I saw the girl sitting next to me playing with a horoscope app. She noticed me peaking, so she asked me, “What’s your sign?” I told her Aquarius, but then I thought, what does this really mean? Do our zodiac signs actually influence our personalities?
In order to analyze if they mean anything, we need to understand the astrology behind zodiac signs and how they came to be. Stars exist in many different sizes and are allocated in many different regions, called constellations. When you connect all the stars within a constellation, the stars appear to make the shapes of different animals and objects. There are approximately 88 constellations, but the sun only passes through 12 constellations. The sun forms a circle once a year, called Ecliptic, and the Ecliptic is made up of 12 portions that are equal to 30 degrees each. These 12 portions are split up into different time periods, which correspond to our birthdays. Therefore, our birthdays are used to determine which zodiac sign we belong to. Each zodiac sign has its own set of unique traits and talents. For example, Aeries are supposed to be energetic and brave, while Taurus are said to be romantic and patient.
As much as I hate to break it to you, the meaning behind zodiac signs aren’t real. Astronomers have been studying the sun and the constellations for decades. However, ancient astronomers failed to understand the theory of precession. Precession is the movement of the earth spinning on its axis caused by the gravitational pull of the Moon on Earth. Because of this, the location of the constellations during ancient times is different from the position we see them today. Around 600 B.C, the point which marked zero degrees through 30 degrees was considered, but that point is not the same today. Pedro Bagaranca states, “Over the past two-and-a-half millennia, this wobble has caused the intersection point between the celestial equator and the ecliptic to move west along the ecliptic by 36 degrees, or almost exactly one-tenth of the way around.” Putting two and two together, the constellations no longer correspond with our birthdays because they have moved. So if you’re an aeries, you might very well be a Taurus! Therefore, how can you be energetic and brave if you’re really supposed to be romantic and patient? Exactly.
Shawn Carlson, a physicist at the University of California, conducted a double blind test to prove that zodiac signs do not reflect our personalities. He recruited 30 well known astrologers and asked them to match the personalities of 116 people with their zodiac signs. As a result, they were only right about a third of the time. Carlson states, “Their predicted connection between the positions of the planets and other astronomical objects at the time of birth and the personalities of test subjects did not exist. The experiment clearly refutes the astrological hypothesis”
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John McGervey also examined the significance of zodiac sings. He performed a study and examined the correlation between zodiac sign personalities and occupations. He examined 6,000 politicians and 17,000 scientists to see if people within each profession fell under the same zodiac sign. Again, it was all random and there was no correlation.
Ask Mark Mayberry claims, it all comes down to what we want to hear. We all want to desperately believe in the magic of zodiac signs because we are fascinated by the thought of astrology and its tie to personalities.
So, what if your personality does match your zodiac sign? If you feel that you’re funny and clever just like your zodiac sign says, then awesome! But chances are that anyone else can also posses these traits even if they do not belong to your zodiac sign. In reality, it can all be due to chance!