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Basic statements about astrology
Revising a 1983 consensus

Geoffrey Dean

An expanded version of a submission to the Discussion Forum on Basic Statements about Astrology planned for Zeitschrift fur Anomalistik in 2005. Reproduced here with permission of its editor. Includes a short postscript covering developments 2005-2013.

Abstract -- In 1983, Peter Niehenke, then president of the DAV (Union of German Astrologers), obtained agreement among the various German astrology groups on seven basic statements about astrology. In 2004 the German journal Zeitschrift fur Anomalistik invited forty leading astrologers and a dozen critical researchers to update these seven statements. What changes should be made? The aim was to reach a consensus. Commentators were free to make their own judgements. According to Dean, the original statements of 1983 imply that astrology has been proven true and works for reasons unknown. Today these statements are easily attacked by critics. They do not resolve the disagreements that exist everywhere in astrology, nor do they resolve the dependance on ancient beliefs that are not sufficiently valid. They are also not necessary for the acceptance of astrology by astrologers. All of these problems can be avoided by rewriting the seven original statements as six new statements that can be summarised as follows: The historical importance of astrology cannot be denied. But hundreds of studies suggests that the chart is merely a cloud in which astrologers see faces and pronounce it miraculous. Astrology may therefore be seen as a useful fiction whose benefit to the client lies in the quality of the astrologer as a wise and caring person.

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