Did Jesus say something about astrology

Astrology and religion - "Luther faked his date of birth - for a better horoscope"

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Astrology has existed for 3000 years - its history is accordingly moving: some religions have fought it, in others it is an integral part of tradition. The religious scholar Kocku von Stuckrad knows the relationship between religion and astrology.

Kocku from Stuckrad

Religious scholar

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Kocku von Stuckrad, born in 1966, is Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. He is co-founder and co-director of the research center “Counterpoint: Navigating Knowledge”, the link opens in a new window - a platform that promotes the discourse between different knowledge systems.

SRF: Astrology is also a guide for some people. Does astrology have religious traits?

Kocku von Stuckrad: Since its inception, astrology has always had religious features. In ancient Babylonia, it was the priests who had to interpret the movements of the stars. Because these indicated the will of the goddesses and gods who manifested themselves in "their" stars.

In Greece and Rome, too, the stars were connected to the world of gods. You can recognize this by names like Jupiter or Venus.

And how is it today?

Today most people are more relaxed about it. There are also many Christians who practice astrology. In the entire area of ​​today's spirituality and psychological astrology, one could say: Astrology has religious features in the sense that it integrates people into a larger, metaphysical overall context.

How does Christianity relate to astrology? At least it developed in the Roman Empire.

For the Christians, things were more complicated at the time: theologians like Origen viewed the stars as “God's handwriting” that initiates could read - including the Star of Bethlehem.

There can be no question of a systematic persecution of astrologers in Christianity.

But the idea that human fate is predetermined in the horoscope has been criticized by theologians. Because of this, the Christian Church has repeatedly fought astrology.

How did this fight show?

The Christian emperors banned astrology in the fourth century. After that there were repeated judicial proceedings. Most reprehensible was to interpret the horoscope and thus also the possible date of death of the emperor. This privilege was reserved for the emperor.

However, there can be no question of a systematic persecution of astrologers. Practicing astrologers were observed in the Renaissance and afterwards, but their activity was tolerated, and some rulers even actively sought them out.

Judaism and Islam have a much more relaxed relationship to astrology than parts of Christianity.

But Protestantism has clearly spoken out against astrology.

Yes, Luther himself rejected astrology. Nevertheless, he falsified his date of birth - to get a "better" horoscope. His friend and co-reformer in Wittenberg, Melanchthon, was one of the leading astrologers of the time.

How do other religions such as Islam or Buddhism and Hinduism relate to Star German?

Judaism and Islam have a much more relaxed relationship to astrology than parts of Christianity. At least as long as it is guaranteed that one “looks at God” but does not question God's freedom. Many astrological traditions have persisted in India and China.

In India, astrology is even taught in some universities.

In India in particular, astrology is widely accepted in society. So it is completely normal to consult astrologers first when finding the right wedding date or when starting a business.

Why was astrology so established in India?

Astrology has a long tradition there and has been linked to Hindu systems. This also includes the connection between planets and deities.

In India, astrology is even taught in some universities. This also helps to establish astrology in the population.

Are there still astrological traditions in Judaism and Islam today?

Definitely! In the Jewish Talmud, for example, there is a balanced discussion of astrology, which many practitioners refer to today. Even in Jewish mysticism, the Kabbalah, astrology still plays a major role today. The situation is similar in many Islamic cultures today.

The interview was conducted by Olivia Röllin.

roel

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  • Commentary by Edwin Schaltegger (Edwin Schaltegger)
    It is simply unbelievable that in an enlightened society one still believes in such "charlatanism" as astrology.
    SRF would use their airtime more wisely to bring people closer to the basics and fascination of astronomy. Planetary constellations that are hundreds of millions of km away from the earth are supposed to influence humans? This is just nonsense. If so, the moon and the sun can have some influence on people.
    Agree Agree to the comment Select answers to reply to the comment
    1. answer from Ivan Walther-Tschudi (Ivan Walther-Tschudi)
      If you had watched the show, you wouldn't be able to write it that way. That astrology has to do with the influence of the stars is an explanation that is hardly supported today. Mostly it is explained as follows: Just as a clock shows the time quantitatively without making the time itself, the positions of the sun, moon and planets show the time qualitatively without being the cause of this quality of time themselves. Why are you commenting on something that you apparently did not see?
      Agree agree to the comment
    2. Show answers
  • Comment by Olivier Wetli ("out of this world")
    There are no real Christians who practice astrology, they just call themselves that. Luther is definitely one of them. Anyone who knows his writings and has read what he said on his deathbed knows why.
    Agree Agree to the comment Select answers to reply to the comment
    1. answer from Ivan Walther-Tschudi (Ivan Walther-Tschudi)
      That's not true! What about Melanchthon, the so-called "teacher of Germany"? This was not only the closest colleague of Luther, but he practiced astrology and was committed to its promotion. To say that "no real Christians" practice astrology is just a blanket judgment and also quite arrogant. Of course, there are certain restrictions and requirements for Christians if they want to reconcile their faith with them (similar to Judaism or Islam).
      Agree agree to the comment
    2. answer from Olivier Wetli ("out of this world")
      Dear Mr. Walther-Tschudi. I define according to the Bible: A Christian born of God, i.e. someone who has repented (= complete repentance) for his sinful life and personally believes in the vicarious atonement of the Lord Jesus on the cross, will certainly after a short time recognize the occult in astrology and leave it. He knows this because he reads and believes the Word of God and not his own twisted theology. The world is looking for great masters, Christians have found THE LORD.
      Agree agree to the comment
    3. answer from Ivan Walther-Tschudi (Ivan Walther-Tschudi)
      Do you define according to the Bible? Where exactly is this definition? What do you do then, for example, with the Magi and the Star of Bethlehem? It's not that simple with the Bible and astrology. It is true that a Christian does not need astrology to attain salvation. But this does not mean that as a Christian one cannot deal with it, cf.: "One person makes a difference between the days, for the other all days are the same. Everyone, however, remain true to their convictions." (Rom 14,5)
      Agree agree to the comment
    4. Show answers
  • Comment from Asher Meng (Ashi)
    Luther also shot completely different things. It is no coincidence that his date of birth was abused by the NAZI and that Kristallnacht took place on his birthday. Luther never officially took a stand on astrology. However, he hated Jews and wrote this down in a booklet. What unfortunately happened in World War II is probably the worst period in human history. Luther also eliminated or organized a competitor.
    Agree Agree to the comment Select answers to reply to the comment
    1. answer from Ivan Walther-Tschudi (Ivan Walther-Tschudi)
      Luther made public statements on astrology (e.g. in a sermon on Daniel). His hatred of Jews in his later life is decidedly and vehemently condemned - and all the more the atrocities of the Nazis. But it has nothing to do with the topic of astrology that the Nazis apparently deliberately chose his birthday. The fact that Luther wanted a better horoscope has nothing to do with the Jews, but rather with Rome and the papacy.
      Agree agree to the comment
    2. Show answers

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