Astrology and astronomy: divergences and convergences

Astrology and astronomy are very similar words and both refer to the sky and the stars. Nevertheless, astronomy and astrology have different meanings and it is important to make a clear distinction. Astronomy is the scientific study of the stars, whereas astrology is a discipline which links individuals with the stars and the signs of the zodiac.

A common history

Some people tend to confuse astronomy and astrology. In Antiquity and the Middle Ages astronomy and astrology were confused and the same person practised both, i.e. studied the sky and the stars and interpreted the horoscope. Sharing the sky and the stars became an increasingly complicated situation and due to the many differences and constant confrontations, divorce was consummated between the two. Astronomy became the science of the stars, while astrology focused on the clairvoyance and divination aspect, but was never able to provide scientific proof for the interpretations put forward.

Similarities and differences between the two

Without astronomical knowledge and vice versa, it is not possible to practice astrology, which makes its predictions on the basis of known constellations. Indeed, to talk about a star and to name it, it is essential to have certain basic skills. Unlike today, in the Middle Ages, astronomy was not far removed from religion. Using starlight, it was customary to make omens in the scientific, political and even religious fields, since even the popes affirmed these predictions. For example, the birth of Jesus was announced by a star and no distinction was made between astrology and religion. Renowned scientists such as Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo held positions as astronomer, physicist, mathematician and were at the same time astrologer and horoscope designer.

The signs of the zodiac

The creation of the signs of the zodiac dates back to antiquity and since then the world has continued to rotate and these constellations have recorded a displacement of about thirty degrees. Today astrology is no longer a scientific field but uses these constellations. A constellation groups together between 5 and 20 stars and each of them is associated with an animal or a figure from mythology. Here too, we can see that science has used mythology and interpretation and vice versa.

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