Is the Fault in YOUR Stars?
The Problem with Zodiac Signs
It’s easy to make fun of astrology enthusiasts, but when it comes right down to it, a lot of the population readily engages with the predictions and descriptions they entail. Admit it, even if you are someone who preaches about how dumb zodiac signs are every day, you secretly know what yours is and have looked into your readings at least once in your life.
A 2018 study found that almost 30% of Americans believe in astrology. That’s almost 1 in 3 people who believe they're stubborn because they’re a Taurus or are only shy because they’re a Virgo. Each to their own I guess. Personally, I’m not a ‘zodiac maniac’, and I doubt I ever will be. Here’s why.
One: I’m a Virgo.
Ironic that I’m using my own zodiac sign to explain why I don’t believe in star signs, I know. But hear me out. Virgos are supposedly very critical beings. A quick Google of “The most critical zodiac signs” reveals that Virgo takes first place in this regard. Maybe this is why I’m super critical of zodiac signs, which would mean astrology is legitimate after all… or, the more likely explanation would be that the personality traits listed under each sign are broad enough to fit literally anyone. Because, let’s be real, you don’t have to be born in August or September in order to think critically.
Albert Einstein was a Pisces, which didn’t even make it to the Top 5 list of most critical zodiac signs. I’m pretty sure you have to be a fairly critical person in order to devise the theory of relativity, which essentially revolutionized the understanding of space, time, gravity, and the universe itself.
Unless of course, ‘critical' means that I’m judgemental, rude, and constantly focus on negatives, which, I don’t think I do, unless perhaps I’m just completely ignorant. Even if that were true though, Virgos are also supposed to be kind which completely contradicts this alternate meaning of ‘critical’. And this conundrum leads me to my second point.
Two: While each zodiac sign has distinct personality traits, there’s a lot of overlap between different months and the traits are often as vague as possible.
Sure, Virgos are supposedly kind, but so are Pisces, Libra, Gemini, Leo, Aries etcetera. Even if the attributes were limited more strictly to specific zodiac signs, there is still the issue of the descriptive words being too broad. What does ‘kind’ mean exactly? Anyone could read descriptions such as 'kind', 'motivated', 'occasionally shy' and apply them somehow to their own experiences, so it doesn't really mean much at all.
Furthermore, if your zodiac sign doesn’t have ‘kind’ listed under it, does it mean you’re incapable of kindness? I sure hope not. I think what makes this so much worse is that, depending on which source you use, the exact personality traits listed will differ.
Three: I just don’t see how the month I was born in is going to determine my personality, my fate and my life as a whole.
I’m sorry, but I’m someone who needs proof before I’ll believe a concept. Maybe that’s why I study science at university. I admit, I’ve been taught to be open minded, but no matter how open minded I am, I just can’t see how the alignment of some massive astronomical balls of incomprehensibly hot and luminous plasma can impact how stubborn I am as a person. I admit, I don’t have any proof that this doesn’t happen, but until I see some solid research which proves that it does, I’m going to sit over here with the rest of the sceptics.
I think the whole idea that people can blame their personality flaws on their star signs is utterly ridiculous.
No Sharon, you’re not rude because you’re a Taurus, you’re just empathetically challenged and socially incompetent. There’s not a fault in your stars, there’s a fault in the way you were raised. Maybe you should work on fixing that.
This is essentially my entire approach to star signs, so I apologise if it’s been a bit of a buzz kill for you. I also apologise if your name is Sharon, that wasn't a personal attack, I'm sure you're lovely.
But here's where it gets weird.
I have to admit, there are two things that I find rather unnerving about star signs. The first is that, a lot of sources have looked at the star signs of serial killers and have found that Taurus and Sagittarius are strangely popular amongst this very specific group of people.
It’s a very strange correlation, which is likely just a coincidence, but the idea of it not being a coincidence is quite disturbing. Should I be concerned that my housemate is a Sagittarius? Perhaps I should stop complaining about the cleaning.
The second uncanny thing I’ve noticed is that every single time I have come across someone who is crazy about zodiac signs, they’ve correctly guessed mine. That’s a 100% success rate when there's a 1 in 12 chance of them guessing it correctly. So even though I don’t believe that the zodiac signs are indicative of my personality and fate, something is strange in terms of how well people are able to determine my actual star sign.
Maybe they stalked me on Facebook, or maybe I subconsciously mentioned my birth month during conversation. Who knows. Either way, you certainly won’t catch me blaming my bad luck and personality on the stars – that’s my family’s fault (kidding!).