Astrology and Science
Validation in Science & Astrology
Astrology and Psychology
The creation of an objective hypothesis is a ‘magical’ process.
On the other hand, the whole process of defining a hypothesis from a study of a phenomenon is a bit of a ‘magical’ process, because it carries with it bias or a
belief system that may have little to do with what is being observed. That bias is essentially projecting an understanding unto the observation. In fact the observation itself is biased. The
world that we perceive is a construct founded on our past experiences, and these in turn go back to previous experiences, and so on. We do not see what is there. We see what we think is there,
and the two are not the same.
Out of practical necessity, measured variables are kept to a minimum. Assumptions are always made in determining how to isolate these variables, and how the other potential variables are excluded from consideration. Unfortunately, there is always the possibility that what is excluded is indirectly involved in the results. There is also a tendency to over-apply Occam's razor, which is a bias towards the less complicated hypothesis. Sometimes the simpler hypothesis is not always the correct choice.
These approaches have become a major problem in medical and pharmacological research, when the experimental conditions in vitro or animal proxy have been too much removed from the real life situations. When later applied to real life situations the mechanism of action, cross-interactions and human side effects have often been found to be much more complicated than at first assumed.
The objectification is not the reality
When we come to believe the objectification over the reality, then the tendency is to dismiss not only observations that contradict our objective view, but also those that participate in it. This is a repeating theme in modern science’s short history, and there are countless examples.
In the health sciences, stress and excess stomach acid were deemed the cause of ulcers, and thus a whole industry developed over reducing the pH of the stomach. Patients with ulcers were often told to go home and take a few days off work. Studies to investigate Heliobacter pylori as the casual agent were dismissed outright, until an Australian physician by the name of Dr. Barry Marshall ingested the bacteria to cause an ulcer and then demonstrated the antibiotic removal of both the microorganism and the ulcer.
For decades, the focus has been on fats as the culprits in creating heart disease, overweight and numerous other illnesses, while carbohydrates such as sugar, bread and starch was consistently overlooked as the major factor. In fact studies that investigated carbohydrates as the problem tended to be ignored or put into the questionable research category, not because they were not done well, but because they went against the prevailing belief. Of course, now, as a result, there is a major overweight health problem.
Science uses coincidence for the opposite meaning of what it is
Coincidence is a way of dismissing what does not fit expectations, by rejecting reality in order to preserve the expectation. It is interesting to point out the use of the term co-incidence. When two events that have a relationship occur but do not seem to have a simple mechanism in common, we tend to refer to the event as a co-incidence. Because there is no know mechanism connecting them, their connection is dismissed.
on the other hand, ultimately, everything is connected. Everything is co-incident in that sense, and if it were not then science would not work. From the point of view of quantum physics, once we become aware of two events, they are already entangled and co-incident. It is the bias of a causal point of view that dismisses a 'coincidence', rather than extending the willingness to investigate the phenomena as it is.
The Approach of the Spiritual Sciences
The spiritual sciences validate knowledge through experiential verification, using both inner and outer validation.
To a large extent, the spiritual sciences have accumulated their knowledge by inner experimentation. For example, the percepts of different traditions of yoga are meant to be followed in order to experience the fruit of the practice on the inside. The validation is experiential, and individual. It does not lend itself to statistical analysis, or to objectification or hypothesis that requires a mechanism of action. The validation is through the experience and state of the participant. It is experientially validated.
Outer validation occurs in sharing the same insights with another person, but ultimately, the validation occurs when it is experienced. Thus the knowledge that is shared is not the ultimate knowledge of the experience, but simply the means to that end. The outer knowledge holds the possibility of the inner awareness and experience in much the same way as a poem is only a means. Much depends on the reader.
This has been an issue in astrology and the other spiritual sciences. The extensive writings of astrology that hold validity do so because the author experienced the validity experientially. To now understand the literature properly, the reader has to do the same. Certainly they have to test the material that they learn through experimentation. Does it work as stated? Does it always work?
But that is only the first step. The next step is even more important. That step is to examine it inwardly, to contemplate it. If it is a good seed of information, that it will grow and sprout more understanding. It will connect with our inner knowing. If it does not, then it was likely only an opinion.
Objectifying the inner sciences
Some have made an effort to objectify the knowledge that the spiritual sciences hold and then to test these objectified constructs using a
hybrid of the scientific method, but what they have actually examined is the map, not the experience of the state or the phenomena that are part of the inner experience. The map is neither the
spiritual experience nor the insight. In fact, if you are not familiar with the territory, a map is not of much use, and trying to understand it from ignorance not only leads to more
ignorance, it also holds the danger of believing that you know more than you do.
All text and artwork are copyright © 2014 by Roman Oleh Yaworsky. No reproduction by any means is permitted.
Be advised: this site is monitored by CopyScape. Quotes with proper attribution are allowed. Otherwise, if you copy this material you will be automatically charged a user's fee on a per word basis.