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Looking to the stars

This time two weeks ago, few people had heard of Professor Parke Kunkle. He’s an astronomy professor in the US who has sparked off panicked scenes all across the world. It began two weeks ago as Mr Kunkle appeared on NBC, talking about his work. Over the course of the interview, he alluded to a phenomenon known “precession”, which, in non-astronomer’s terms, means the earth wobbles as it rotates.

This change in the rotation of the Earth is too small to notice, but over time it can cause some dramatic changes. And one of these changes has sparked a panic. The stars have moved. At least from our perspective here on Earth, the stars are no longer where they should be. And as a result, there is frenzied speculation that for centuries, the entire horoscope system has been wrong.

Some astrologers have hit back, saying that this doesn’t really change how horoscopes are calculated here in the Western World, but they haven’t managed to calm the storm. A lot of people are very worried. Calls and emails have been flooding in as stressed out clients look for reassurance. Add in the widely held belief that there are in fact 13 Zodiac signs, rather than 12, and the entire “science” looks very unreliable indeed.

Spare a thought for the 26 year-old Canadian who has sported a prominent Aries tattoo for several years. If Professor Kunkle is right, she’s no longer even an Aries. Her story may be fairly extreme, but it’s far from unique. On a smaller scale, millions of people must now face the possibility that they’ve been looking at the wrong section of the chart for a very long time.

Hopefully, this will destroy people’s faith in horoscopes. They’re dangerous—people look to them for guidance about serious, life changing decisions, and apply the vague, meaningless statements to their lives. A humourous example is Raymond Domenech, the former French football manager who exiled talented Scorpios from his side, and professes a distrust of Leos. His wacky methodology turned a team of world-beaters into a worldwide laughing stock.

We need a better guide than his; something that offers more than vague, inconsequential drivel. We need a guide that tells us our problem and how we can deal with it; something that isn’t undermined by the rotation of the Earth and that doesn’t change.

If you’ve been in the habit of reading your stars, why not start reading the word of the one who made the stars. The Bible is God’s unchanging, but ever relevant guide to daily living and to the future. There you will find hope, peace, and most of all a forgiving relationship that will never end.