Can Astronomical Radiation Affect Organisms on Earth?
The subject of cosmobiology is a very recent development in the subjects of both psychology and astronomy; however, some see it as related to the years-old practice of astrology – a set of ideas that are both unfounded and superstitious.
Before beginning the discussion on the subject of cosmobiology, the author would like to reject the principles of this and identify themselves as an extreme sceptic of the belief. It is these simplistic horoscopes (often completely made up) printed in magazines and newspapers that can bias scientists and intellectuals against subjects such as cosmobiology, which I must admit have some founding. In this essay, I will touch on the subject of astrology, as I feel that it is important to this topic area, but I must make it clear that I am discussing the merits of cosmobiology and the statistics presented on this subject, and not astrology, a belief which I consider whole-heartedly to be false. Astrology was practised by many leading scientists of the Renaissance and even in its true form is still followed today. It is a link of associations between various planets and luminaries with constellations, resulting in personality traits which can apparently be observed in individuals born under times of the year when these planets or luminaries. For instance, the planet Saturn is said to rule the constellation Capricorn, through which the sun (generally observed as the most important of the astrological bodies) travels over the latter parts of December and most of January.
In ancient times, Saturn was seen as a God of laws, politics and restrictions, which is why an individual born during this time period (a ‘Capricorn’) is presumed to exhibit qualities such as ambition, a sense of justice, and identification as a figure of authority. At this point, I would like to reference a study performed by Van Deusen in 1976. The study collected information on close to 100,000 successful careers and the astrological signs of those who had led them.Around a decade later, two scientists interested in the field sent questionnaires to 10 psychology graduates (admittedly a small sample) with no knowledge of the study, asking them to read short descriptions of each astrological signs and to decide which they felt most appropriate for certain career paths. There being 20 predictions to make, by chance, it would be expected for only 2.4 to be correct, however, 4 were.
But this can easily be explained away by the fundamental principle that if a child spends their whole life learning from various sources that they are expected to exhibit certain qualities, psychologically dictates that they will take them on to some degree. Therefore this study seems to disprove astrology, at least in part. Professional astrologers would probably argue that it is not sun signs that rule talents and career paths, however, one would expect the most important of the astrological bodies to have at least some influence on job choice. This is only one of many studies appearing to disprove the belief of astrology, most of which have resulted in the desired results – that the constellations of the zodiac have no effect on human personalities and life choices. Accordingly, cosmobiology rejects the fundamental principles of the superstition.
In most of its forms, it does not associate particular personality traits with planets, luminaries, constellations, or time periods. Another important difference is that it also rejects the Trans-Neptunian planets, and also the asteroids, meaning that it only takes into account the supposed influence of the sun, moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. Reinhold Ebertin defined cosmobiology in that: “Cosmobiology is a scientific discipline concerned with the possible correlation between the cosmos and organic life and the effects of cosmic rhythms and stellar motion on man, with all his potentials and dispositions, his character and the possible turns of fate; it also researches this correlation and effects as mirrored by earth’s plant and animal life as a whole. In this endeavour, cosmobiology utilises modern-day methods of scientific research, such as statistics, analysis, and computer programming. It is of prime importance, however, in view of the scientific effort expended, not to overlook the macrocosmic and microcosmic interrelations incapable of measurement.
” Most leading cosmobiologists also take into account geological factors such as the weather. The basis of cosmobiology is that the planets emit radiation which has an effect on human brains. However, I wish to reject this idea straight from the beginning. The idea that the precise waves of radiation emitted at the time of our birth changes in any fundamental way the way in which our brains work seems to me ridiculous. I cannot even believe in a tiny effect.
Surely these waves would affect us throughout our lives, and the idea that they are at their most potent at the time of our birth is invalid? In addition, astrology originated in ancient times, when the sheer distance between the earth and planets was unknown and therefore the waves travelling from them were presumed to be much more powerful than they actually are. In light of this only, the effect of the moon can be rationally believed to have any effect at all and even this is highly dubious. Lastly, the traits associated with the planets seem to have been decided because of nugatory factors– Mars is reddish, colour psychology states that red raises blood pressure and is linked to passion. In simple terms, what great chance would have to come about for this to have any verity at all? An unlikely one. The author hopes that on reviewing that last paragraph, the reader will, however, empathise with the author on the suggestion that moon could exert some influence – although not one at all linked to traditional astrology. Marine animals seem to be able to innately ‘sense’ lunar cycles even when they are taken far away from the tides, which have been proven to be controlled by the movement of the moon.
Could this be due to psychological factors? The light reflected from the sun by the moon is close enough to us for any radioactive properties of it to affect our brains and therefore change the way we think and act in very minor ways. It is possible that the transits cycles of the moon could then influence human moods (for instance people might feel an atmosphere of stress when the moon is at its fullest and therefore reflecting more radiation than usual), however, the author does not see how this could relate to natal charts. (The author would here like to apologise for their lack of elaboration, which results from the fact that the author feels as if their own further input would be unhelpful to the reader, as the author has no major knowledge of the human brain, and is basing this essay almost wholly on their astronomical knowledge. The author would advise any particularly interested reader to look into studies of psychology and its relations to biology and the physics, chemistry and biology of the human brain if they wish to do their own research in the effects of moon-reflected radiation or moods and personalities, or indeed any other aspect of cosmobiology.) In conclusion, the author does not believe there to be any merit to the science of cosmobiology, much less astrology.
However, I am of the belief that time-based factors can influence personalities. For instance, a child born during summer will be more likely to spend time outside as an infant, meaning their chances of socialisation are higher. Therefore these children might be more extroverted. Children born during September, October, and November will be older and therefore physically stronger than other children in their year, giving them a confidence in sporting activities which results in the fact that major sports players are more likely to be born during these time periods. However, these statistics do not seem to have anything to do with the radiation emitted by planets and luminaries, which seem too minor to make any noticeable effect, especially if we are studying natal charts – the science of which is wholly lacking.
If the reader, however, is interested in either astrology or cosmobiology I would recommend either or both of Astrology: Science or Superstition? by H.J. Eysenck and D.K.B.
Nias, and The Combination of Stellar Influences by Reinhold Ebertin, both of which present and discuss both topics in an unbiased manner, and considerable detail.