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Newspaper Argumenty i Fakty (“Arguments and Facts”) # 11, 1994

In the thirties of the 20th century a depression has been raging in the USA, and it gave birth to numerous occult sciences which began to flourish magnificently. As the people in the mass pauperized, so grew profits of various fortune-tellers, astrologers and suchlike swindlers. Everything has taken such a spectacular scope that some notorious American scientists were forced to appeal to the nation in a letter, where they have unmasked soothsayers and augurs of every kind. This message has been published by many newspapers and magazines, and, sooth to say, it has sobered many a man. The last year (1993) a group of Soviet scientists has addressed to the people with a similar appeal, but unfortunately it has been almost unnoticed by the mass media. Among those who have signed the document was professor A.M. Cherepashchuk, the director of the State Astronomical Institute named after Sternberg. Our correspondent asked him some questions, and we hope that his answers will compel the readers of Argumenty i Fakty to treat the newfangled astrological prognoses more critically.

– Anatoly Mikhaylovich, references to stargazers astrologers have reached us from the depths of unrecorded time of history. They have become kind of indispensable element of any society. Well, ought one to attach serious importance to the item, to overemphasize it?

– The fact is, that there is an enormous distance between the today’s astrologers and, say, those of the Middle Ages. The level of knowledge of these last ones hasn’t permitted them to comprehend and correctly (adequately) interpret their observations of celestial bodies. They have been sincere people and didn’t lie, but merely have been under delusion. That has been their faith. The today’s astrologers have not such a faith, and cannot have it. Even for the single reason which is their knowledge of the essentials of modern astronomy. In spite of this, they consciousely deceive their citizens, earning big sums of money for that.

– And anyway it is astonishing how those stargazers could decieve common people and even their kings and emperors for such a long period of time?

– I suppose, many a stargazer had been beheaded (both figuratively and literally) due to a "fault" in their work. Even in those times, probably, along with honest scientists there have been those who used their knowledge and experience with mercenary aims. Most probably they have been clever, inspective people initiated in political and court intrigues, having good intuition, experts in medicine and psychology. They hadn’t met any difficulties in making what we now call prognosis (forecasts). An example, having already became classic, of using knowledge with mercenary target, the prognosis of eclipses.

– But beyond eclipses they predicted even vistories and defeats of their governors in the
battles they held, dates of downfalls of their states and even destinies of entire nations. Let us consider well known Nostradamus...

All his predictions are formulated in such a manner, that there isn’t any definiteness in them, they are written in Aesopian language. One can interpret Nostradamus as one likes. Not so long ago American Academy of Sciences has done a research of his works and came to conclusion that these works don't include any precise coincidences with the events that have really taken place in the world history..

– And what manuals do our self-educated astrologers use to learn those disciplines and cast the horoscopes?

– As a rule, the books they use have been published as far back as before the Revolution, and their content is on the level of mediaeval knowledge. Even the position of the point of vernal equinox — the foundational parameter for the astrologers themselves — doesn't correspond to the current state, because it shifts constantly as time goes. And many of them even don't know the fact. That's why I feel almost touched to tears by their persistence in identification of the precise birthdate (within a minute) of a man for casting his horoscope. And one more thing: why do they consider as the starting point the moment of birth, but not that of conception? Well, the time of birth depends on many casual factors: on the state of health of the mother, on the stress situation arising during the pregnancy etc. Someone is born after 9 month, and someone after 7 or 8.

– Everybody somehow has become accustomed to horoscopes, they verify their actions, plan their lives according to them. And what about signs of the Zodiac? Many people imagine that their characters correspond to the descriptions inherent to this or that sign.

– It’s just a beautiful game. You always can find correspondences to your heart's content with everything you wish. Haven’t you ever looked through a medical reference-book? When you are reading the description of a disease you are inevitably feeling its symptoms in your own organism.

–You will not really negate existence of a connection between a man, his physical state and the Cosmos generally, will you?

– The direct influence of the stars and Cosmos upon our organism is very weak. The terrestrial atmosphere ideally defends us from unfavorable cosmic impacts. The strongest influence we feel is that of the nearest to us star – the Sun, that from time to time bombards the terrestrial surface by highly energetic particles. And the astrologers’ insane fabrications are counted upon illiterate ignorant people, who open-mouthed, enchanted by gibberish incantations (sort of “Mars is coming into the quadrature of Saturn”), listen to them. It’s sheer savagery, all the more for our country, that has opened the cosmic era for earthmen. The most scandalizing and suspect thing for me in the current situation is that nowadays astrology is transmuted into a medium of clandestine manipulation of public conscience. Attentively read and listen to the recommendations of these Cassandra’s servants. They can be interpreted with a good reason as hints to actions that are advantageous for special groups of people. “Today from the hour 10am to 12pm carrying on business is a prospectless deed. Tomorrow from 12pm to 5pm don’t take the initiative in something, and from 5pm to 7pm try to avoid places with great masses of people.” I think that it is an immense way of impact on citizens’ conduct, I’d even say, a peculiar form of their zombirizing. Explaining this phenomenon by position of the elite or high fashioned theory would be too primitive. Unfortunately, our modern administration doesn't need scientists, but haruspices, and that’s why all the newspapers readily print their prognoses in the same manner they once used to do when publishing the appeals of the CC CPSU. Both are the excellent means for brainwashing.

The interviewer Sergey Kalinin

Translated from the Russian by Peter Trevogin


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