Astrology is variously considered by its proponents to be a symbolic language, a form of art, a form of science, or a form of divination.
The scientific community, where it has commented, claims that astrology has repeatedly failed to demonstrate its effectiveness in numerous controlled studies.
Critics generally consider astrology to be a pseudoscience or superstition as it has failed empirical tests in controlled studies.
Central to horoscopic astrology and its branches is the calculation of a horoscope or what has recently become known as an astrological chart.
Astrology has used the concept of classical elements from antiquity up until the present.
The Greeks saw astronomy and astrology as being separate.
Many critics claim that a central problem in astrology is the lack of evidence for a scientifically defined mechanism by which celestial objects can supposedly influence terrestrial affairs.
Effect size studies in astrology conclude that the mean accuracy of astrological predictions is no greater than what is expected by chance, and astrology's perceived performance has disappeared on critical inspection..
Many proteins important in human biology were first discovered by studying their homologues in yeast; these proteins include cell cycle proteins, signaling proteins, and protein-processing enzymes.
The core beliefs of astrology were prevalent in most of the ancient world and are epitomized in the Hermetic maxim "as above, so below."
The differentiation between astronomy and astrology varied from place to place; they were indistinguishable in ancient Babylonia, but separated to a greater degree in ancient Greece.
Listed below are some significant traditions of astrology.
A practitioner of astrology is called an astrologer, or, less often, an astrologist.
Horoscopic astrology is a very specific and complex system of astrology that was developed in the Mediterranean region and specifically Hellenistic Egypt sometime around the late second or early first century B.C.E.
Some astrologers have argued that few practitioners today pursue scientific testing of astrology because they feel that working with clients on a daily basis provides a personal validation for them.
Astrophysicist Victor Mansfield suggests that astrology should draw inspiration from quantum physics.
Tycho Brahe used a similar phrase to justify his studies in astrology: suspiciendo despicio, "by looking up I see downward."
In ancient Hellenistic astrology the rising sign, or ascendant, demarcated the first celestial house of a horoscope, and the word for the ascendant in Greek was horoskopos.
Within the contemporary scientific community, astrology is generally labeled as a pseudoscience and it has been criticized as being unscientific both by scientific bodies and by individual scientists.
At this point, astrology and astronomy began to diverge; astronomy became one of the central sciences while astrology was increasingly viewed by natural scientists as an occult science or superstition.
Most classicists think that Western astrology is dependent on Greek mythology.
Some astrologers argue that most studies of astrology do not reflect the nature of astrological practice and that existing experimental methods and research tools are not adequate for studying this complex discipline.
Some astrologers, on the other hand, believe that astrology is amenable to the scientific method, given sufficiently sophisticated analytical methods, and they cite pilot studies they claim support this view.
Every tradition of horoscopic astrology can be divided into four specific branches which are directed towards specific subjects or used for specific purposes.
Given this historical contribution, astrology has been called a protoscience along with pseudosciences such as alchemy.
Historically, the term mathematicus was used to denote a person proficient in astrology, astronomy, and mathematics.
Consequently, some look at astrology as a way of learning about oneself and one's motivations.
The word astrology is derived from the Greek ??????????, from ?????? (astron, "star") and ????? (logos, "word").
Many other subsets and applications of astrology are derived from the four fundamental branches.
Astrology has had a profound influence over the past few thousand years on both Western and Eastern cultures.
Consequently, a number of astrologers have called for continuing studies of astrology based on statistical validation.