Since some people have gotten their chakras all out of wack about their astrological signs being altered by shifts in the Earth’s axis, a friend of the site — an Aries who found herself suffering an identity crisis after being transformed into a Pisces — decided to contact Rob Brezny of Free Will Astrology to get some clarity on the matter. Here’s what he had to say:
The astrological signs are not defined by, nor do they have anything to do with, the constellations you see in the sky. Thousands of years ago, when both astrological and astronomical thinking were based on insufficient data, the names of the constellations happened to be paired with the astrological signs. Today, those pairings are no longer in sync: Astrological signs do not line up with the constellations in the same way they did way back then, due to the precession of the equinoxes.
However, the work of modern Western astrologers has nothing to do with stars or constellations. Rather, their relevant data have to do with the movements of the planets in our own solar system within a zone of influence defined by the relationship between the Earth and Sun. The key demarcation points in that relationship are the equinoxes and solstices. At the Northern Hemisphere’s vernal equinox, which occurs on about March 20th of each year, the Sun enters into the sign of Aries. At the Northern Hemisphere’s summer solstice, the sun enters into the sign of Cancer. The location of the constellations is irrelevant; the “influence of the stars” isn’t considered.
So there you have it. The Babylonians — who came up with this astrology stuff — couldn’t tell their heads from their solstices. Now it’s, um, science. Of course, I don’t believe any of this stuff anyway since I’m a Pisces, the wisest sign in the Zodiac.