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Answers to radiometric dating assignment

None of the existing spiritual, physical, informational, psychic, and magical theories are useful, being either untestable or incompatible with existing knowledge. The same defects apply to the theories of Jung, Elwell, Hand, Guinard, and Scofield. In contrast a new non-astrological theory of astrology is useful and has survived repeated testing. Explains the role of theories and how to assess their usefulness. Along the way many of astrology's internal problems are uncovered and discussed. Theories to explain astrology's perceived value reduce to astrology having the right priorities. It can give the feeling of understanding our place within the whole. Memes (any information that is copied from person to person) are a powerful new way to explain astrology's longevity and perceived value. 46 references.

The word theory has two different meanings.

In everyday use it means an unsupported idea as in "its only a theory." But in science it means the exact opposite, namely a well-supported idea as in the theory of relativity. Both kinds of theory are explanations for how things work, and we bother with them for two very good reasons. First, explanations are better than uncertainty, even untrue explanations as when misfortune was explained by witches. Second, knowing how things work is better than ignorance. It helped us walk on the Moon.

If we want to improve astrology, we first need to know how it works. So we need an explanation to guide our explorations. If we think it works by physics, we explore physical variables like gravity.

If by chemistry, we explore chemical variables like asian and american dating edicate hormones. Without some kind of explanation we have no idea where to start.

But astrologers have never had a clear idea how astrology works or why birth charts should match their owners.

To them astrology has always been an extraordinary phenomenon beyond ordinary explanation, and over the centuries they have put forward various speculations to fill the gap. Astrology may have an ordinary explanation after all, so their speculations may be premature. In what follows are bristol and mark dating we briefly survey the theories / explanations (ancient and modern) of astrology starting with a closer look at why they are important. To avoid confusion we will use explanation instead of theory to mean an explanation (tested or untested) of how things work.

We may not realise it, but making and testing explanations is part of everyday living. Repairing a faulty car requires an explanation of how cars work. Curing an illness requires an explanation of how people get sick. Interpreting a birth chart requires an explanation of how astrology works.

As shown next, we need only be more rigorous in our use of explanations and we end up doing science.

In science we recognise that our senses often fail us. The sequence tends to be observations, explanation, tests -- and if the explanation fails, we change it for something better. Thus oxygen was better than phlogiston at explaining combustion.

The advantages of a well-tested explanation are enormous. We no longer need to record the fall of every apple, and we become more and more free of paralysing uncertainty. It helps us to ask the right questions (why do leaves fall slower than apples?) and to be suspicious of answers that have not been properly tested.

But we cannot derive an explanation of X, or even know anything about X, unless (1) X exhibits some order, and (2) the order can be discovered by observation.

Astrologers claim that astrology meets both requirements, so there is no reason why an explanation of astrology cannot be derived. But what should an explanation explain?

As astrologer Robert Hand (1988:119,123) puts it, astrologers "must evolve a theoretical framework . [which] must be based on a coherent metaphysical position and must allow the derivation of astrological principles. Right now we are stuck with the 'anything goes' approach to astrology." Or as Dobyns and Roof (1973:4) put it, astrology is "almost as confused as the earthly chaos it is supposed to clarify."

Accordingly, an explanation of astrology should explain how planets etc can correspond to people, thus allowing the derivation of astrological principles.

It should provide clues to issues such as: How does astrology work? How essential for good results is belief in astrology?

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