Astrology is defined as, "the divination of the supposed influences of the stars and planets on human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects." There's an old saying that things are "written in the stars," and for believers of astrology, this is especially true. Because so much is still unknown about the universe, those who rely on it for answers or predictions about their lives must act on a huge degree of faith in regard to what the stars tell them. Still, countless people still check their horoscopes on a daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly basis. Most major women's magazines have astrology sections that give readers brief predictions about what's in store for those under specific astrological signs. While you likely already know the star sign under which you fall, there's a lot you likely don't know about astrology. Here are 15 surprising facts about astrology that just might change how you look at the stars.
15 The Moon Might Affect the Body the Way It Affects the Moon
The ocean waves are a result of the moon's influence, and astrologers believe that the moon influences the body's "waves" in much the same way. The body, much like the ocean, is made mostly of water. When you hear someone say they're acting funny because it's a full moon, there might actually be some science behind it. Interestingly, there is even documented proof that more assaults occur around a full moon, giving strong support to the theory the moon affects human behavior. Don't let that be an excuse for poor behaviour, of course, but keep a look out for how your mood changes (or doesn't!).
14 1/3 of Americans Believe in Astrology
A recent poll of thousands of Americans found that 31% believed in astrology, while 18% were unsure, and the remainder did not believe in it. What's interesting about these numbers, however, is that simply because a person doesn't "believe" in astrology, doesn't mean they don't at least read their own horoscope for entertainment. Due to astrology's prevalence in society, knowledge of it is nearly unavoidable so a lack of belief in it does not stop its growth. Women make up 75% of believers in astrology, which explains why astrology columns are so popular in women's magazines.
13 Presidents Are Often Astrology Buffs
In 1988, the White House confirmed the Reagan's were followers of astrology. Mrs. Reagan, in particular, took astrological circumstances under consideration when planning events. Her interest was said to have peaked after the attempted assassination of her husband in 1981. The Reagan's consulted with a professional astrologer to help in their making decisions within the White House and for the world. Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin D. Roosevelt were also astrology buffs and were known to even quote horoscopes at times.
12 An Astrology Accurately Predicted Hitler's Future
While no one could have known just how horrific Hitler's reign would be, one astrologer came pretty close. In 1924, a female "fan" of Hitler's gave astrologer Frau Elsbeth Ebertin, Hitler's birth chart, and she rightly predicted he would become Fuhrer. Hitler himself was said to be a believer in astrology and even consulted with astrological professionals during World War II. Although Hitler was a different kind of leader than American Presidents, there is certainly a trend of world leaders looking to the stars for some input on their decisions.
11 Obama's Presidential Race Victory Was Predicted by Astrologers
Of course, when it came to predicting if Senator John McCain or Barack Obama would win the presidential race, anyone who tried would have a 50% chance at guessing correctly. The United Astrology Conference meets every four years, and in 2008, a panel of professional astrologers unanimously predicted Obama's victory. Next, in 2012 they predicted Obama would win again, and they were just as right. While the panel predicts several different events, the highlight tends to be the presidential predictions. These only get more exciting when people hear how accurate they usually are.
10 Your Zodiac Sign Comes From the Sun
You likely already know what your zodiac sign is, but do you know what determines what it will be? Of course, it depends on your birthdate, but furthermore, it relates to the position of the sun at the time of your birth. There are twelve possible zodiac signs, and each one takes up an equal portion of the zodiac wheel. Astrologists believe that this sign will tell you invaluable information about your future and your personality. The signs are thought the be an energy that acts on other bodies, including transiting planets.
9 There Are Water, Fire, Earth, and Air Signs
There are twelve zodiac signs on the astrological wheel, but they divide further into four different groups. First, there are Water Signs which are Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces. Then, there are Fire Signs which are Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. There are Earth Signs which are Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn and the Air Signs are Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius. These four elements are essential to all life forms and the element under which your zodiac sign falls is said to predict major components of your personality.
8 Your Sign Might Influence Your Appearance
Astrologers believe that your zodiac sign will actually impact what you look like. It might sound far-fetched, but astrologers believe they have uncovered certain physical traits that are most prominent in certain signs. For example, Gemini (May 21-June 20) are said to be small-boned and to have refined features. Scorpios (October 23-November 21) are said to be muscular and to have an intense look in their eyes. Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) are thought to generally have long, muscular legs, and female Sagittarius are said to behave in a tomboy-like manner.
7 Each Sign Has Favorable Colors
Have you ever noticed you seem to gravitate towards certain colors or feel most comfortable surrounded by certain colors? Perhaps there are colors that make you feel uneasy. It turns out, there could be an astrological basis for the way you feel about colors. Sagittarius signs have purple listed as a favorable color, and Taurus (April 20-May 20) have the color pink. Pisces (February 19-March 20) have sea-green as a favorable color and Libra (September 23-October 22) have the color blue. So, next time you're in need of a little bit of extra luck (and let's face it, more luck never hurts!) try surrounding yourself in your favorite color or choosing a token item in that color to keep with you.
6 China, India, and Greece Were First Countries to Utilize Astrology
Astrology got its beginnings in around 3000 BC Mesopotamia. From there, different cultures took the Babylonian beliefs and created their own beliefs and rules around it. Greece, for example, combined characters from Greek mythology with star signs. India and China combined religion and superstition with astrology in an effort to make it relatable to the local public. Many of the first scientists in medieval Europe were astrologers or astronomers, and while some people look down on it as a pseudoscience now, it was a highly valued profession at the time.
5 Star Signs Have Elements And Qualities
If you haven't heard of the elements (fire, earth, air, and water) before, you likely haven't heard of the qualities of the star signs, either. These qualities are Cardinal, Fixed, and Mutable. Cardinal signs are Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn and they're associated with initiation (both of the spirit and the seasons). Fixed signs are Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius, and Taurus and they are associated with being steady, digging in, and even being stubborn. Mutable signs are Sagittarius, Gemini, Virgo, and Pisces and they are associated with flexibility and communication.
4 Certain Combinations Make for Better Relationships
Whether a coincidence or not (astrologers would say certainly not) certain combinations of zodiac signs have better odds of producing successful relationships than others. Of course, zodiac compatibility shouldn't be the ONLY thing you consider when looking at the future of a relationship, but it certainly provides interesting insights. For example, passionate Scorpios merge best with Water signs like Cancer and Pisces. Aquarius blends well with Air signs like Gemini and Libra. The elements and qualities of signs also affect how compatible signs are, so there are many factors to consider when it comes to sun sign compatibility.
3 This is What Mercury in Retrograde Really Means
Mercury in retrograde is an astrological term you're likely to hear thrown around quite often, but may be unsure of what it actually means. Three to four times a year, the planet Mercury appears to stop and actually reverse (retrograde) although it's just an optical illusion. When this happens, many people say they notice certain things like computers and phones being on the fritz. Astrologers also say you might want to be careful in making set plans during retrograde because plans are more likely to fall through. So, next time you know Mercury is in retrograde, pay attention to how things unfold in your life and maybe you'll find a connection.
2 Your Star Sign Might Affect Your Lovemaking
While we've established that a certain matching of zodiac signs can impact a romantic relationship, signs are also said to interact and affect the actual physical act of making love. Certain signs are associated with certain sexual characteristics, and these characteristics play into sexual compatibility. Aries are thought to be powerful lovers, although they can also be seen as selfish or fleeting. Taurus, being the most masculine sign, is associated with lovers with a high sex drive. Gemini make for creative lovers and the power of excitement and change will not be lost on them. Thanks to Leos being known for their fiery passion, they are largely thought to make the best lovers overall, but the other 11 signs certainly have something to say about that.
1 Your Sign Might Not Be What You Think It Is
You may have led your whole life thinking you were an intense Scorpio, only to find out you're actually a Libra! What!? Well, things change in the sky just as they change on Earth. A phenomenon called precession, which refers to the Earth wobbling on its axis. Because, as we discussed, your star sign depends on the position of the sun at the time of your birth, and if the position of the Earth is different than we thought, so too will be your sun sign. Whether you should actually "switch" zodiac signs according to this information is the subject of much debate, but the general consensus seems to be that astrologers have always known about precession and therefore, have always taken it into account.