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Pseduscience, spirituality and frauds

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N

Nara

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Folks,

We have talked at length about Spiritual Frauds with passion. But pseudoscience gets a pass. Why are these two treated differently? Is one malignant and the other benign?

For starters, fraud is a strong word.

The legal definition may vary, but we can broadly define fraud as intentional effort, successful or not, to deceive for personal gain or cause injury in some form to others, or both.

An intentional effort to defraud is hard to establish. A case can be made that a little magic that promotes spirituality does no harm. There is no personal gain. Besides, for every argument of that these godmen cause harm to material career or harm family livelihood, a case can be made that the person in fact gains in spirituality by relinquishing material life in favor of spiritual life.

Spirituality, after all, is widely believed to be a good thing. So, the examples such as an young man throwing away his IT career, or a middle-aged man leaving his family, only prove the dangerously delusional nature of spirituality, not the defrauding nature of godmen.

Sans godmen like தேங்காய் சீனிவாசன் of காசேதான் கடவுளடா who was a deliberate conman, and those who are convicted of crimes, all other godmen, starting from the foremost among Brahminical Matams to the non-Brahmnical saffron-clad spiritual gurus, promote spirituality in one form or another. They all accept money from their devotees and do "good" in one form or another. One may trace its lineage back 1000 years or 5000 years, and another 100 years, and yet another just a couple of weeks, but in essence they belong to the same category, one that promotes spirituality over materialism.

These godmen truly believe in the message they deliver to their followers. So there is no intentionality to cause harm. Nor is there any overt personal material gain, they seem to spend the money they collect on charitable work. So, why would anyone belonging to this group be a fraud? If one is a fraud, then all are frauds.

But, what about Jyothisham? Unlike spirituality, a clear cause-and-effect material relationship is claimed. A planet entering some constellation is supposed to bring financial or health problems. This is the quintessence of what cause-and-effect is. An observable material effect attributable to a physical cause is claimed. Further, a remedy to alleviate the cause and change the effect is prescribed. What is the evidence for any of this, nothing. Any discrepancy in results is attributed to the lack of skill of the practitioner, not to the theory itself. It is often claimed that very much like a bad doctor may misdiagnose or prescribe wrong medicine, a bad astrologer may make mistakes, but the field of astrology itself is a science.

For something to be a science its theory must be verifiable. Even otherwise, it does not necessarily become a pseudoscience. Please take a look at this article, Why Astrology Is A Pseudoscience. The author proposes the following theorem for what makes something pseudoscience:
A theory or discipline which purports to be scientific is pseudoscientific if and only if:

  1. it has been less progressive than alternative theories over a long period of time, and faces many unsolved problems; but,
  2. the community of practitioners makes little attempt to develop the theory towards solutions of the problems, shows no concern for attempts to evaluate the theory in relation to others, and is selective in considering confirmations and disconfirmations.
Science is a process of observation, experimentation, synthesis, and conclusion. Pseudoscience is conclusion, observation, selective presentation of data, and claim to scientific authenticity.

So, Astrology is not only not a science, but it is worse, it is a pseudoscience.

Now let us consider these two sets of people, spiritual godmen and Astrologers.

The message of the spiritual godmen of all stripes, brahmnical and non-brahmnical, is essentially supra-material. The worst one can say about them is that they are delusional, but not frauds in the sense there was intentional design for personal gain or injury to others. A cogent argument could be made that this delusion is benign.

In the case of astrology, the practitioners, with full knowledge of lack of rigorous scientific evidence, claim a predictable material cause-and-effect, like science, call their practice science, and derive material personal benefit. This is, by definition, fraud, and by definition, not science; and in as much as it promises material benefits but ends up causing material harm in many cases, malignant, IMO.

Cheers!
 
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nara,

sunday is named after star sun.
monday is named after moon.
........
finally saturday is named saturn.this is accepted norm worldover.

our weekdays are named after grahams.what is the alternate,that you are suggesting.becoz,i see you are upset at us being delusional,fradulently calling our hobby as science,sometimes makin our hobby itself a 'living' ,thereby fraudulently earning amassing wealth,while seasoned college educated masters or doctrate of engineering or management,will fail majorly in their endeavour,thereby collapse the economy,jobs,....but these people shud be scot free and not put in jail,but astrologers must be handcuffed and charged with criminal charges thrown to gallows.till the last second,as far as i know,clients come to astrolger counseling,on their own accord.no client has been brainwashed or intimidated physically or emotionally,to visit for consultation.why is it difficult for people,mystic science is science too.thats why certain things in life are still mysterious.we may know somethings in life as humanity,but we do not know everything.

i'ts like me saying,i don't believe in any creator at all--its humbug.hey,wait a minute,even though i did not see my parents making it out,but i am alive and born.just becoz i did not see the making of a creation by creators, certainly can infer with common sense and intelligence,what went behind the scenes.i am not oing to waste my time,doing contemplation over the existance of god or not,becoz as far as i am concerned,those who do not believe in god is a fool.so be it.
 
Friends,
As far as my knowledge goes a human being`s mental strength cannot be improved with medicine. Ultimate aim is for mental peace. Whether we go to temple do pooja or go to astrologer we are doing for our mental peace only. If somebody gets benefitted then that idol/pooja/astrologer gets importance and others follow him/his words.

Please think if Arjuna had failed in the Kurukshethra battle would GITA got so much importance as of now?
 
.....i am not oing to waste my time,doing contemplation over the existance of god or not,becoz as far as i am concerned,those who do not believe in god is a fool.so be it.

You know NN, I grew up in a very small village about 15 KM north of Karur. I went to a school where English was taught in Tamil. When I went to college for PUC in Chennai I did not understand a word the teachers were saying in English. Even now it takes a long time for me to compose my thoughts in English. It took close to two hours for me prepare this post. But in just a few minutes you have given me the benefit of your superior wisdom. Thank you very much.
 
You know NN, I grew up in a very small village about 15 KM north of Karur. I went to a school where English was taught in Tamil. When I went to college for PUC in Chennai I did not understand a word the teachers were saying in English. Even now it takes a long time for me to compose my thoughts in English. It took close to two hours for me prepare this post. But in just a few minutes you have given me the benefit of your superior wisdom. Thank you very much.
tn.

nara,

karur is such a wonderful belt in tn.sir,for all of us in india,english medium was a challenge not only for students but also for teacher's.even today our english pronounciation has a distinctive accent,unknown say in lanchasire,essex,sussex..or like in texas,michigan,tennesse...or victoria,sydney, ..or new-zaealand.even though english is an anglo-saxon heritage.

indian english has a certain finesse which we indians adore,left as a legacy by brits for us.so,i understand and empathise with you totally.for students to study in usa,toefl is a must,despite having studied from k1-k12,plus degree courses,plus masters.even today,its really amazing when i read newspapers showing indian american kids excelling in spelling bee contests a various states in usa.

thank you,i take it,i have pinned hopes of you back in chanting namo narayanaya or chant sai ram :):boink:
 
to: Nara sir, A marketing techinc called encash it, Peace of mind or mental peace people wanted quick results,so the Spiritual Man, Astrologer, make use of their clever way of convincing people they are encash on others sufferings. A person may need peace for that he required some help, here comes marketing whatis your basic need try convert to a effitive want and sastify him then making him purchase it. So ever ony Gm or Astro they use this method only. s.r.k.
 
hi Nara sir,
even though astrology is based on predictiction....like nuclear
science is good for energy...same nuclear is bad for humanity...like
nuclear bomb etc...so its not the fault of astrology..may be fault of
practitioners....like weather channel predicts 50% rain in our locality...
but there is no single drop rain in our area....neither i can sue
weather channel/ nor meterlogical dept/science...its only
a prediction....i never seen my parents...can i say i born without
parents?...its just inference....even perceptions are not real in this
world....kannale kanbathum poi....kaadhale ketpathum poi....
theera visaripathe mei....so even science is failed many times....so they
called metaphysics....

regards
tbs
 
all other godmen, starting from the foremost among Brahminical Matams to the non-Brahmnical saffron-clad spiritual gurus
Shri Nara,

IMO, the established matams differ from the self-proclaimed Godmen gurus. The former seldom claim that they are god, not even as avatar of god. As far as I know they are all content with their status as matadhipatis. Since they lead a spiritual life in accordance with the rules prescribed by our Hindu scriptures and the rules of the particular matams to which they belong, people tend to look upon them as teacher, guide and philosopher.

The other variety differs from this in that they most often blaze into the scene and soon proclaim their divinity or spiritual guru status.
These godmen truly believe in the message they deliver to their followers. So there is no intentionality to cause harm. Nor is there any overt personal material gain, they seem to spend the money they collect on charitable work. So, why would anyone belonging to this group be a fraud? If one is a fraud, then all are frauds.
You have presumed that (1) these godmen truly believe in the message they deliver, and (2) they don't intend to cause harm. As to the first, how are we to find out the validity of the presumption except from results of narco-tests conducted on a sufficiently large sample of godmen? So, we should not take that as a premise for the argument. Coming to the second item, it seems to me that the main aim of these godmen is not at all altruistic, but one of self-aggrandisement as may easily be seen by the extremely lavish lifestyles of these godmen. Hence, their attitude towards their devotees will most likely be one of sheer unconcern so long as their (godmens') own standing and popularity is maintained.

Coming to the charitable works, this is also part of their scheme to maintain their hold on an increasing number of people; there are other invisible benefits in undertaking huge development schemes because it gives a chance to get the politicians into their company. If anyone makes a real audit of the financial affairs of any of the godmens' establishments, he is sure to find many skeletons in the cupboard.

Hence, godmen cannot be given the benefit of doubt and declared "non-fraudulent" unless they volunteer to a public audit of their establishments. Applying your dictum, if one is a fraud, then all are frauds, so they are.

But, what about Jyothisham? Unlike spirituality, a clear cause-and-effect material relationship is claimed. A planet entering some constellation is supposed to bring financial or health problems. This is the quintessence of what cause-and-effect is. An observable material effect attributable to a physical cause is claimed. Further, a remedy to alleviate the cause and change the effect is prescribed. What is the evidence for any of this, nothing. Any discrepancy in results is attributed to the lack of skill of the practitioner, not to the theory itself. It is often claimed that very much like a bad doctor may misdiagnose or prescribe wrong medicine, a bad astrologer may make mistakes, but the field of astrology itself is a science.
If we take meteorology, we have developed it as a science over the last hundred years or so. Still not all predictions are correct; the monsoon still evades correct prediction as to its timing and/or the precipitation. Coming to earthquakes, it is a natural phenomenon probably following a scientific cause-and-effect pattern, and we have obtained 'some' knowledge about earthquake prediction, but not fully. Can we therefore come to the conclusion that earthquake prediction is a pseudo-science?
In a similar way, the horoscope, (observing the hour) gives us a pointer to the general life trend of the person. From this we may be able to do finer analysis and go to more details. But unlike most other scientific topics, astrological research depends on studying enough samples of 'entire human lives' and this can be achieved only if a sustained effort is made over a long period of time, say, 200 or 300 years so that we will get a full scientifically correct data base; alternatively, we should have in place a research unit capable of collecting data of a large number of persons (millions, may be) and follow their life events completely. Even this will require about 100 years and so one individual cannot obviously do that.

We are, therefore, depending on the works of our ancient astrologers who have given their observations. What the astrologer predicts is not an inviolable judgement but only an aid (just like career counselling) to the person to assess his choice/s and make a decision. The mistake comes when the josier talks as if his words are inviolable truths and the person consulting him also thinks in the same way.

For something to be a science its theory must be verifiable. Even otherwise, it does not necessarily become a pseudoscience.
I do not get what you intend to say.

Please take a look at this article, Why Astrology Is A Pseudoscience. The author proposes the following theorem for what makes something pseudoscience:

A theory or discipline which purports to be scientific is pseudoscientific if and only if:

1. it has been less progressive than alternative theories over a long period of time, and faces many unsolved problems; but,
2. the community of practitioners makes little attempt to develop the theory towards solutions of the problems, shows no concern for attempts to evaluate the theory in relation to others, and is selective in considering confirmations and disconfirmations.

Science is a process of observation, experimentation, synthesis, and conclusion. Pseudoscience is conclusion, observation, selective presentation of data, and claim to scientific authenticity.

So, Astrology is not only not a science, but it is worse, it is a pseudoscience.
It is true that astrological research is practically non-existent. The reasons are many. Apart from the resources, monetary, personnel and otherwise, there is this difficulty of following up each and every sample person through his/her life, record the developments, etc., in a world in which people move from continent to continent and life has become so busy and mechanical that nobody has the patience to record many of the happenings which may be relevant to astrology. But to say that astrology proceeds like conclusion>observation>selective presentation of data, is wrong; the very word conclusion shows that it has come from some data. Moreover, the astrology books, even some of the neo-theories which were based on ceratin small sample sizes and announced as path-breaking, were based on data (however small in size and hence insufficient)>observation>conclusion. Experimentation and synthesis is not easily achieved in astrological research. IMO, therefore, astrology is also science, though underdeveloped or in its infancy.


Now let us consider these two sets of people, spiritual godmen and Astrologers.

The message of the spiritual godmen of all stripes, brahmnical and non-brahmnical, is essentially supra-material. The worst one can say about them is that they are delusional, but not frauds in the sense there was intentional design for personal gain or injury to others. A cogent argument could be made that this delusion is benign.

In the case of astrology, the practitioners, with full knowledge of lack of rigorous scientific evidence, claim a predictable material cause-and-effect, like science, call their practice science, and derive material personal benefit. This is, by definition, fraud, and by definition, not science; and in as much as it promises material benefits but ends up causing material harm in many cases, malignant, IMO.

Cheers!
I have already stated above that the self-announced godmen do give delusional messages intentionally for their personal gain. To that extent that is not benign, it is malignant. Astrlogers may claim sure-shot efficacy for their predictions but they ought not to, just as the wether forecaster cannot and should not claim 100% infallibility for his predictions. Therefore, once again, it is the astrologer/s who are at fault, not astrology.
 
Sri.Nara said:-

When I went to college for PUC in Chennai I did not understand a word the teachers were saying in English.

I had nightmares attending maths and chemistry lectures. Somehow I survived in Physics! In short, while in Tamil medium, I was a high flyer..up close to the clouds! in English medium, I fell rather very hard to the earth, still I have memories. as late as 5 years back I had dreams (nightmares) of attending an exam in that college! Naturally I was late for the exam; I prepared for the wrong subject; I had no pen or pencil on me....nightmares are cool, I suppose! 'Murphy's law' work at the optimum during nightmares.:scared:

Cheers!
 
Sri.Sangom asked:-

If we take meteorology, we have developed it as a science over the last hundred years or so. Still not all predictions are correct; the monsoon still evades correct prediction as to its timing and/or the precipitation. Coming to earthquakes, it is a natural phenomenon probably following a scientific cause-and-effect pattern, and we have obtained 'some' knowledge about earthquake prediction, but not fully. Can we therefore come to the conclusion that earthquake prediction is a pseudo-science?

Sri.Sangom, Greetings. Kindly allow me, please. Meteorology and seismology are not pseudo-sciences, because, still datas are collected to study the phenomenon well; Some kind of patterns are developed; the study results reflect the cause and effect; although we have not mastered such fields, the study conducted are rational and relevant to the subject.

While astronomy is a study of science, astrology is not a science at all. தென்னை மரத்தில் தேள் கொட்டினால் பனை மரத்தில் நெரி கட்டின கதை. I can't laugh enough. This earth is covered with molten lava around the core; a thin crust is formed due to exposure to colder atmosphere; on that temporary crust, life is formed, trains and aeroplanes fly, bombs are dropped! That is it; that is the human civilasation. திருவிழா காலத்தில் போட்ட கடை போல ஸ்திரம்! Such temporary life to get affected by the movements of Mars or Jupiter.....I don't know. Horoscope is an accurate astronomical log entry. There is no doubt about that. But, science ends there.

Cheers!
 
Sri.Nara said:-

Spirituality, after all, is widely believed to be a good thing

Sri.Nara, Greetings. Spirituality is just a belief although widely believed. Has spirituality ever been properly defined? The term 'spirituality' is so evasive, anything can be brought under 'spirituality' depending upon the level of development of the person's mind. Certain practices that can be viewed as 'barbaric' by one group of persons are viewed as 'spiritual' by a different groups of persons. So, in my opinion, such a thing that may not be even properly defined can not be identified as 'good' or 'bad'.

These godmen truly believe in the message they deliver to their followers. So there is no intentionality to cause harm. Nor is there any overt personal material gain, they seem to spend the money they collect on charitable work. So, why would anyone belonging to this group be a fraud?

Really? I have seen somany 'Godmen' without an iota of truth in their eyes when they talk. It would be very hard for me to convince myself with such a thing. There is no question of causing harm intentionally; if they harm even one client, they may have to close shop, don't they? குழம்பின மனம் ஒரு பணக்காய்க்கும் மரம். Why would they cause harm?

Money is not the aim all the time, my friend. for example, I don't give a hoot about money, not because I have of plenty of it; I don't. I don't even check the bank balance (someone else does it though). There may be a different motive other than money, like fame, centre of attraction, lime light, sexual favours....I can go on. While I am not willing to paint all the religious promoters with a wide brush, I would be cautious though.

They all accept money from their devotees and do "good" in one form or another. One may trace its lineage back 1000 years or 5000 years, and another 100 years, and yet another just a couple of weeks, but in essence they belong to the same category, one that promotes spirituality over materialism.

What the hell is this 'promoting spirituality over materialism'? I have not seen a proper definition for 'spirituality'; nor have seen the definition for 'materialism'. If I spill my guts and work 8 days in a week and amass a bit of savings and enjoy airconditioned bedroom, bathroom and toilet; house in an expensive suburb; dinner at expensive restaurents; driving a 'topless' car...are you going to call me materialist? or if I make big earnings, tight fisted, eat hand out dinner from 'hare Krsna', share accomadation in a rundown suburb, always use car-pool transport to save petrol..are you going to call me materialist? Who the heck is this elusive character 'materialist, please? If I know the definition for 'spiritual' and 'materialism', it would be nice, thanks.

Cheers!
 
Sri.Sangom asked:-



Sri.Sangom, Greetings. Kindly allow me, please. Meteorology and seismology are not pseudo-sciences, because, still datas are collected to study the phenomenon well; Some kind of patterns are developed; the study results reflect the cause and effect; although we have not mastered such fields, the study conducted are rational and relevant to the subject.

While astronomy is a study of science, astrology is not a science at all. தென்னை மரத்தில் தேள் கொட்டினால் பனை மரத்தில் நெரி கட்டின கதை. I can't laugh enough. This earth is covered with molten lava around the core; a thin crust is formed due to exposure to colder atmosphere; on that temporary crust, life is formed, trains and aeroplanes fly, bombs are dropped! That is it; that is the human civilasation. திருவிழா காலத்தில் போட்ட கடை போல ஸ்திரம்! Such temporary life to get affected by the movements of Mars or Jupiter.....I don't know. Horoscope is an accurate astronomical log entry. There is no doubt about that. But, science ends there.

Cheers!
Dear Sri Raghy,
Thanks for accepting that horoscope is an accurate astronomical log entry. The disbelief starts because astrlogical texts as also astrologers somehow use language which gives scope for interpretations like, the planets influence the individual's aura, mind, neurons etc., etc. But that is the tragedy. The planets do not influence. They only "indicate"; as an example, let us assume that sunrise now is at 06.00hrs. The hands of an accurate clock will be at 6 & 12 when the sun rises, but it will not mean that the two clock hands coming in a particular position raise the sun. (I remember a TV series called "Fragglerock". The fraggles observe that the man opens an umbrella and the rain water starts falling on them. So they conclude that the umbrella creates a shower if opened and stops it once it is closed!)

Where we have gone wrong is in correctly interpreting the real basis of astrology.

In the 60's in France an attempt was done to find out whether there was any truth in astrology. They made a study of a very large number of births in a hospital and followed up the persons for one point - their occupation, and found that the position of moon with reference to the birth point coincided with the persons predominantly in the medical profession. (Usual astrological slang will be, "moon in such and such place makes one a medical professional". So, moon is the cause!)

2. I am not sure if my post gives an impression that I treat meteorology or seismology are pseudo-sciences. I was putting a question whether we treat them so, that is I do not think so. Pl. see once again and tell me if my post needs any correction.
 
Sri.Sangom said:-

.....So they conclude that the umbrella creates a shower if opened and stops it once it is closed!

Sri.Sangom, this is very well written! I have not seen anyone presenting the arguments in such a 'nut shell' fashion. You are perfectly right. But that argument is not quite enough though. We don't have enough study conducted to bolster the results. For example, 'most of the warriors happened to have Mars in Extaltion'...such statements are not verified. Most astrolgers ask me to look at the effects of all the planets in combination, then comes சொந்த வீடு, வாடகை வீடு, கூட்டு குடித்தனம், not accounted at all situation (kuligan), homeless..etc; and comes transitions. I have written down 'total effect' for a given situation; the predictions can be more elusive than 'All India Radio weather forecastes' (in the 1970s). We can pretty much get all kinds of predictions..from rags to riches!

.....I was putting a question whether we treat them so,....

And I was answering that question, that's all. I was not addressing any opinion from you, but, answered in general. In my opinion, this doesn't call for any correction.

Cheers!
 
raghy,

how do you delineate time? hora ,ahora albeit hour,minutes,seconds? varam aka weekdays.naal aka day?whats the fundamental basis?why do you have whats today called a biological clock?

we all are interconnected at such subtle levels,it's a ripple effect that will be felt.

the source for all is one.

astronomy is a physical manifestation of study of grahams.

astrologer interprets,the probable cause & effect.in interpretation,yes its probable accuracy may have hit or miss.like i said earlier,king dritashtran was conveyed the happenings of the maha bharatham war,by a remote sensing ability of a human,who told what lord krishna gave upadesham to arjuna.such feats are like our gps .they lived such a life.today instead of gps we have a compass,to show direction as astrologers.we evolve and we devolve also.where we are is the question?

NASA after spending billions of dollars,are saying mars is a red colored planet.varamihira,parashara wrote siddhanthams and left for us,which cost less than cent,to get the same message.now who is evolved or devolved?
 
Raghy,

To believe in astrology or not, is one's own choice. But deriding astrology without making a serious study of it is not correct. If, for example, I say genetics is all humbug because I don't have any knowledge about it, it will only show my lack of understanding.

Astrology also can be studied well and practised honestly with astounding results. So far, in my 70 years, I have come across 3 or 4 such astrologers. One among them was an atheist or at least an agnostic, retired professor (when I met him), landlord and gave astrological predictions completely free of charge. There was always a big crowd waiting during the few hours per day which he had set apart for this. He never used to give any "parihaarams" saying such things may not work but he used to tell the ignorant, uneducated village folk that they could either go to some other astrologer if they were bent upon doing parihaaram, or rest content with their usual prayers or whatever they do, and he also used to say, as clearly as possible, whether a particular problem will be solved or not, and when such solution is likely.

I showed my horoscope to him and he predicted certain things
(which being family matters, I cannot write here) which proved correct later on.

The other three astrologers were god-believing and of the usual type, but their predictions were also quite accurate not only for me but in a few other cases I know of. Only one among these four used to accept money; being a very poor brahmin with no other source of income, he used to accept whatever was given by the people who came for consulting, but never specified a fee.

People facing sudden, seemingly insurmountable problems, have to approach some one for mental peace. My son says that the westerners go to the psychologist or consultant, on such occasions and these psychologists/consultants play more or less the same role as the astrologers do in India; the former charge hefty fees while the latter (astrologers) are learning the trick, which is somewhat alien to our historical culture.

IMO, therefore, it is not correct to make fun of astrology as such.
 
Dear Shri sangom,

First, I don't want to hold a brief for godmen of any kind. My main proposition is about astrology -- it is not only not science, but it is pseudoscience which makes it even more dangerous than simple "spirituality" whatever that means Raghy.

The reason I talked about godmen is my observation that on the one hand there is severe criticism of some godmen, well deserved I might add, for the snake oil they sell, and on the other, one's own preferred godmen and astrology are exempted from criticism, even though they are in essence about the same.

If I understand you correctly, if not please correct me, you exempt Matathipathees because, (i) they don't claim to be god or avatar of god, and (ii) they follow rules laid down in Hindu scripture. I am afraid this is not persuasive to me.

Whether one claims to be god and the other not, they all speak for god, in one form or another, in a manner that is suitable to the gullibility of their devotees. One claiming to be god or avatar of god does not make him any more of a dupe than one who asserts to know who or what god is with nothing but their own preferred scriptures as the basis.

As to the second point, I think you would agree that following a set of rules cannot make anyone better than someone else. For that, at a minimum, we need to look at the rules and see how good they are. The rules Brahmnical Mathipathees revere and follow are derived from Dharmashathras. So, following these rules actually make the Matathipathees more apt to be criticized than the godmen and gurus. In my observation, the Sathya Sai Baba devotees seem to treat everyone equally and with respect, and the followers of Brahmnical Matathipathees put caste above all else. They rather import Brahmin girls with very little cultural similarity and separate these girls from her family support structure and make them completely dependent and reliant on her in-laws, and we know how wonderful these in-laws can be, than to give even a slight look at a TNB girl with almost identical cultural background, separated only by caste. These rules are endorsed and promoted by the Matathipathees.

What motivates anyone to charity can only be speculated upon. Are the charitable works done by Matathuipathees any more altruistic than that done by godmen, I don't know the answer. Also, whether Matam finances are subject to public audit, I don't know either. But, IMO, these are important issues no doubt, but irrelevant for my point, which is, they all belong to the same category, selling the same snake oil, namely spirituality, whatever that means Raghy.

In a way, these Matathipathees are responsible for the rise of godmen. The "spirituality", whatever that means, they promote is very attractive to the educated and affluent, but the caste consciousness is not. So, they take the "spirituality" whatever that means, and go to godmen who downplay caste.

Coming to Astrology, it seems you have not taken the theorem I cited to determine what is pseudoscience into account in your defense of Astrology as science. Meteorology, seismic geology, etc., have amassed a wealth of data over centuries, analyzed and synthesized this data, and extracted valuable conclusions. They are science not because they are perfect, but because they are progressive. The reason Astrology is not science is precisely because of this, there is no attempt to even gather the data you are suggesting. Yet, with no data, no attempt to gather data, and only some personal testimony as basis, Astrology wants to be a science. Why is this not conclusion first, selective data fitting next?

If large scale study will vindicate Astrology as science, then that must be conducted first before asserting the status and respectability of science for Astrology.

If Astrology gives peace of mind to somebody in the same way a child finds comfort in his or her security blanket, then I have no argument. My problem is with the a priori claim to it being science with just the assertion that if a study is done it will be shown to be authentic. This is a very low bar for science. Anything can be claimed as science then.

Cheers!
 
....What the hell is this 'promoting spirituality over materialism'? I have not seen a proper definition for 'spirituality'; nor have seen the definition for 'materialism'.

Dear brother Raghy,

Please read my response to Shri sangom, it may provide some context for my comments. With respect to godmen, gurus and acharyas, I would like to see the same standard applied across the board. Giving selective exemption along the lines of one's own preference is what I am commenting on.

On spirituality, I am sure you have a pretty good idea what it means to you. For a definition we can look up Wikipedia. The spirituality I was referring to is the one that asserts non-material entity that outlives our body, and the notion that pursuit of knowledge about this entity is the purpose or will lead to the purpose of life.

The materialism I was referring to is one that rejects anything supernatural. It is one that honestly admits its limitations and does not offer supernatural explanations for phenomenon that it is not able to explain at the moment.

I am sure these can be further refined, but I think it offers at least an outline of what I was referring to as Spirituality and Materialism.

In this context, it is my belief that all godmen, guru and acharya alike, promote "spirituality" over "materialism". In this respect, they all are alike irrespective of how old a given institution is or what rules they follow.

My point is not whether a given godman is fraud or not, even though I still think fraud requires intentionality and also know that absence of intentionality does not make the product they are selling, spirituality, any less harmful.

My point simply is, they all promote spirituality over materialism. So, when somebody takes this teaching seriously and forsakes his career or family, why blame only the ones who deliver "spirituality" in easy terms. Blame them all, or blame none of them, selective blaming is unfair.

Hope this clarifies....
 
hi folks,
like movie parasakthi's dialogue...written by MK...like this kaduvulai
nambalam...anaal poosariye namba koodathu.....like spirituality/
psuedo astrology are good...may be some ready made practitioners
are bad.....my 2 cents.....

regards
tbs
 
Andrew Pessin: God Is Not One -- But Religions May Be

this post may have some interesting perspective,i enjoyed reading it,hope you all do.

despite posts by nara,raghy ..claiming astrology as psuedo-science,what i would like to know,is how much do both value time?and how do both,divide time?

if,its data,then b.v.raman has done gives rather 300 yoga combinations.plus nadi josiam,which gives mind boggling predictions,which is baffling me even today.

data collections to even to the angles degree of exaltation or debilitation is written in siddhanthams.its fashionable to pooh pooh ancient indians by pio's nri's atheists agnostics who live globally...etc just becoz it's passe.

all i can think is 'rofl'.

:boink:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOIBIrU_2Es&playnext_from=TL&videos=znRlLomCkKg&feature=sub
 
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as godmen/woman give solace and do fund raising,to build schools,colleges,hospitals,marriage bureaus,social works during national dsasters or any disasters occuring globally or internally within a person....these people are extremely dangerous people,as they have larger than life cut-outs which demeans humanity.ya,rite (sarcastic).

so,educated bums,like doctors or engineers..etc get miffed.ha,i went to school,college,did phd.....etc some clown from some idiotic obscure village bumpkin,is cornering all wealth,glory,status,popularity..etc and giving up ostentatious material life and want to live simple life simply.no,thats against my business interest,i have kill them and eradicate them from earth as they are rodents.(sarcastic sic!).

peace of mind is the name of the game.

science or psuedo-science,as long as one is nat a anti-social element,how does it matter?maybe a astounding motivated people will fly aeroplanes into buildings,because they were religiously inclined and dared to take on the soil of USA,is also another bewildering moment,in peoples lives globally.i know so many citizens other than americans,who still gloat over 9/11 and people other than indians who gloat over 11/26!!

there are far too important things in the world,rather than taking on simple astrologer's,who are trying to make a living,with harmless suggestions,thru astro-counseling.

even belief in god is a harmless ,well intended service.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2dm-ejcLqc&feature=related (please do not watch this video,as it contains very adult content,not for immature minds ,cane very dangerous,as its delusional in nature )
 
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Sangom:-(Quote)To believe in astrology or not, is one's own choice. But deriding astrology without making a serious study of it is not correct. If, for example, I say genetics is all humbug because I don't have any knowledge about it, it will only show my lack of understanding.(en-quote)

sri.Sangom-please try to understand me in the right perspective.Hindu Astrology says if moon (Chandra)is in Pleiades(Kritthika),my birth star is Kritthika and my Janma Rasi is Mesham (if Kritthika Mudal Paadham) or Rishabam (if Kritthika 2,3,4 paadhams)The Constellation Pleiades is made up of 6 stars and all the 6 are NOT co-planarMoon,an earth,s satellite is several trillions miles orlight years from those 6 stars and it can NOT be co-palanar at ALL.This is for the Human eyes(Dhrk)-2 dimentional picture if observed from Ujjain.If observed from New York-almost 180 degrees away-Moon would "apparently appear to be in a constellation before or after Pleiades for the human eye(Dhrk).So it is NOT REALITY but a "RELATIVE" Appearence.=if predictions are made on the basis of Brhat Jadhakam --result will be Chaos.Readers Please give your "input" Now coming to Rahu and Kethu.They are Not planets.They say they are "Shadows"--Acharya sri.SANKARA says "Raagu Grastha Diwaakarendhu Sadrso"--Grastham=Pidikkirathu=holding in the grip.--If it grips only Sun(Suryoparaatham),we may say Moon's shadow--only Moon(Chandroparaadham) ,we may say earth's shadow.But Acharya swami says "Diwakara and Indu(Sun and Moon).Acharya swami is Intellectual giant of gargantuan Dimentions--he would NOT talk witout proper thinking.So ragu and Kethu are NOT shadows.(to be continued) --our friendss may give their "inputs" after i finish my arguments.
 
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The formula for a plane is:

ax + by + cz + d = 0, where (a,b,c) is the normal vector of the plane.
The value d can be computed by plugging in one of the points and then solving. If d is the same for all subsets of three points, then the planes are the same.

One advantage of this technique is that it can work in hyper-dimensional space. For example, suppose you wanted to compute the dihedral angle between two m-dimensional hyperplanes defined by m points in n-dimensional space. If n − m > 1, then there are an infinite number of normal vectors for each hyperplane, so the angle between two of them is not necessarily the dihedral angle. However, if you use Graham Sutras process using the same initial vector in both cases, then the angle between the two normal vectors will be minimal, and therefore will be the dihedral angle between the hyperplanes.

Yeh Trishapta Prayanti Vishwa

Trishapta (3&7) wraps Vishwa (this world)

The message is that 3-space at the boundary of 4-space is a geometric set up of 3 linear dimensions which can take us sequentially uptill 7 linear steps.

The domain and boundary are distinct set ups. If domain represents and becomes the Vedic domain, the boundary would represent and would becomes the Upved. Sthaptyaved being Upved of Athavved and Manasara being the scripture of Sthaptyaupved, therefore, we shall be requiring comprehension of the Vishwa as is the enlightenment of the first quarter of the first Mantra of the Atharvved to appreciate the organization of Mansara.

The Rishis of yore,could fathom,Surya's rays are crucial for life on earth,via radiation.They also mention in Shatapatha Brahmana,that,owing to water getting evaporated from Surya's radiation,a condensation forms in bhuvar ,thereby leading Varuna for rain.

With Surya at the center of Navagraha,mandala its getting obvious from temple archetecture records also,that our ancestor's were higly scientific in their coded sutras.

Therefore the conclusion of all conclusions for us is that for proper learning of Vedic science & technology,and NOT consider jyotisham which is the eyes of the Veda Purusha,to be Psuedoscience.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPUouu-Nr9Q

Source:Internet.
 
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Sri. Sangom said:-

To believe in astrology or not, is one's own choice. But deriding astrology without making a serious study of it is not correct...............IMO, therefore, it is not correct to make fun of astrology as such.
Sri.Sangom, Greetings. Giving due credit to your opinions, I fail to see opposition to one's choice to believe in astrology; also, I fail to see where I made fun of astrology. If you think my using the phrases like 'சொந்த வீடு, வாடகை வீடு, கூட்டு குடித்தனம்' amounts to making fun of astrology, I beg to disagree, for I spoke the truth.In the time of birth, log entry chart, we have 12 squares or 12 houses. Mars, Jupiter, Satrun, Venus and mercury own two houses each where as Sun and Moon own one house each (சொந்த வீடு); when the planets occupy houses other than their own in the Rasi chart, they are in வாடகை வீடு; more than one planet occupying one house is கூட்டு குடித்தனம்; homeless are Raahu and Kethu. I was not making fun at all.

Astrology is hailed as science; it was around since Mahabharata period. Yet, in your life time you could meet only 3 or 4 astrologers who could be reliable! Is it not very strange? The study does not follow any pattern; does not have any consistency.

I am requesting you to think about one question that nags me for a very...very long time.....If astrology is a science, then why should someone hailed as something very special for making a correct prediction? Should it not be a regular occurance? Why should the prediction differ from person to person? Due to the lack of consistency and reliability, I am very sceptical about astrology.

Cheers!
 
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Within 30 seconds or less some subtle details change. the lack of accuracy in knowing a birth time is part of the fuzzy area that makes even a perfect acharyal of jyotisham incapable of delivering exactly perfect 100% always accurate predictions and descriptions.Yoga literally means "linking." When two entities link together in such a way that they become a combined entity, they have achieved "yoga." In jyotisham, the term describes the combination between grahams. In more common use, the term refers to the individual athma linking with the parama-athma. It is foolish to take any one factor out of context and consider it to be the entirety of the person’s jatakam.Moksham is not bound to the laws of karma, and can happen at any time due to the force of effects that are far greater than the laws of the natural world, which jyotisham, though esoteric, is a monitor of.
 
Sri. Sangom said:-

Sri.Sangom, Greetings. Giving due credit to your opinions, I fail to see opposition to one's choice to believe in astrology; also, I fail to see where I made fun of astrology. If you think my using the phrases like 'சொந்த வீடு, வாடகை வீடு, கூட்டு குடித்தனம்' amounts to making fun of astrology, I beg to disagree, for I spoke the truth.In the time of birth, log entry chart, we have 12 squares or 12 houses. Mars, Jupiter, Satrun, Venus and mercury own two houses each where as Sun and Moon own one house each (சொந்த வீடு); when the planets occupy houses other than their own in the Rasi chart, they are in வாடகை வீடு; more than one planet occupying one house is கூட்டு குடித்தனம்; homeless are Raahu and Kethu. I was not making fun at all.
Dear Sri Raghy,

While சொந்த வீடு is quite alright, normally there is no concept in astrological texts about one planet paying rent to another planet and so the use of the term வாடகை வீடு was uncharitable. Same holds good for குடித்தனம் since the planets are not viewed as running a household. You may be able to argue that your words did not amount to making fun of astrology but it is for the recipient to judge. Is it not?

Astrology is hailed as science; it was around since Mahabharata period. Yet, in your life time you could meet only 3 or 4 astrologers who could be reliable! Is it not very strange?
Considering that my lifetime here has so far been 70 years, that I was not consulting astrologers either as a hobby or as part of any research work, and approached them only when some occasion necessitated it, the point that Astrology has had a hoary history does not look relevant to the point. Even at any point of time we cannot expect a very large number of people to practice as atrologers.

Second, why only 3 or 4 reliable astrologers? If you want to undergo a serious surgery, will you not enquire which doctor is reliable? You will get an answer saying a handful of doctors are good. Some of them may be far away, some costly, etc., and your choice will be reduced to one or two. If we say that I have found only 2 or 3 good doctors who can do coronary bypass in Chennai, will it mean that something is strange with allopathic medicine? By the same token, will you go to each one of them? When I said that I have found 3 or 4 reliable astrologers, it does not mean a universal judgement. There may be many more, but I had no occasion to know about them.


The study does not follow any pattern; does not have any consistency.
On this point I agree. Much more research needs to be done. Unfortunately, astrology is a condemned subject and just like the Hindu Paraiah, it has been condemned ab initio.

I am requesting you to think about one question that nags me for a very...very long time.....If astrology is a science, then why should someone hailed as something very special for making a correct prediction? Should it not be a regular occurance? Why should the prediction differ from person to person?
Here I have to cite the examples of meteorology, etc. Since a lot of 'study' has been made and lots of data have been collected, these are given the status of science. But what is their accuracy rate? If the same attention had been paid, amounts spent, and data collected and collated, in respect of astrology, may be its accuracy rate might also have improved.

Due to the lack of consistency and reliability, I am very sceptical about astrology.

Cheers!
Of course, even pure mathematics may one day reach a stage of indeterminacy. That apart, consistency and reliability are low in any branch of science dealing with human behaviour; take economics, politics, population projections, etc. You are, of course, perfectly entitled to be sceptical about astrology. There is no quarrel about it.
 
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