What’s the “right” way to look at astrology?

Astrology is one of those potentially controversial subjects. Some people believe in it devoutly, consulting horoscopes frequently to ensure their actions are taken at the most propitious time. Others are on an active warpath against it and anything else they consider to be pseudo-science, and see believers as deluded morons.

I would bet, though, that most people are not particularly polarized by astrology, but simply enjoy it as more of a parlour game than anything serious. They are usually, at least on some level, affected by its portrait of them and its predictions, but not to the point of saying they really believe in it.

So what is the “right” way to look at astrology? Well, assuming there ever is a “right” way to look at anything, I would say that astrology’s most appropriate place is as a tool for self-knowledge. As such, its validity as a science is irrelevant, and here’s why:

Consider the person who is given an interpretation of their birth chart as a portrait of their personality and potential. Most people would go through the report with playful interest, sorting through it to see where it seems accurate and where it seems to miss the mark. That process is itself a form of self-reflection. You have to have a certain awareness of your traits and tendencies to know whether or not there is a fit. If something is depicted that you had not considered as one of your own traits, the process of evaluating its accuracy gives you the opportunity to reconsider the possibility that you might not have noticed some truth about yourself.

If honesty with yourself leads you to acknowledge that a certain pattern of thought, emotion, or behaviour, does in fact show up in your life, the exercise that may have started as simple entertainment ends up giving you a little more self-awareness. And I believe that’s never a bad thing.