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View Poll Results: Do you believe in
Astrology 57 28.36%
Numerology 14 6.97%
Tarot 8 3.98%
None. 140 69.65%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 201. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 24th September 2018, 15:48   #211
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Default Re: Do you believe in Astrology, Tarot, Numerology?

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Originally Posted by Enobarbus View Post
I salute your monumental patience Samurai. Your clarity of thought is astounding. Your articulation is lucid. Some of the stuff you wrote in this thread will help me in my own arguments with some of my friends. Thanks for filling up some of the gaps in my knowledge and understanding.
Thank you for your kind words. I learned a lot from the best skeptics in the world, by reading their books, and watching them argue on youtube over the last decade. The top four on my list are Christoper Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, Neil degrasse Tyson & Sam Harris.

It also helps I had some unconventional science education. As a teen I ended up reading these books, and Feynman's autobiography, which changed my way of thinking. I was also into national level science model competition in highschool and had to build lots of science ideas into practical things.

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Ahh yes! There lies my perfect agreement with you. "empirical".
.
.
So yes, I agree. Astrology is not a science. At best, it has an empirical basis to believe.
I am glad we agree astrology is not science. But it appears our definitions of empirical is different. Empirical evidence must be consistent, otherwise it will be called anecdotal. Since 20th century, empirical evidence is measured using statistics. It is known as the 68–95–99.7 rule.

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In statistics, the 68–95–99.7 rule, also known as the empirical rule, is a shorthand used to remember the percentage of values that lie within a band around the mean in a normal distribution with a width of two, four and six standard deviations, respectively; more accurately, 68.27%, 95.45% and 99.73% of the values lie within one, two and three standard deviations of the mean, respectively.

The usefulness of this heuristic depends significantly on the question under consideration. In the social sciences, a result may be considered "significant" if its confidence level is of the order of a two-sigma effect (95%), while in particle physics, there is a convention of a five-sigma effect (99.99994% confidence) being required to qualify as a discovery.
So the question is... what is the sigma we must demand from astrology. We all know that 2/3 sigma is out of question. Does astrology even meet 1-sigma empirical standard of evidence? I don't know if it does.

Last edited by Samurai : 24th September 2018 at 15:52.
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Old 24th September 2018, 15:54   #212
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But, science will have scientific method to explain why it is NOT 100% accurate (Can we call this method to madness )unlike the astrology where both predictions and justifications are unscientific


Many of the scientific methods, calculations and equipment were not even invented/discovered when many scientific theories and mathematical concepts were invented. Ancient Indian scriptures (as an example) had quite precise measurements of the distance of sun from Earth (besides knowing as given that Earth rotates around the sun), concept of calculus, Pythagoras theorem, concept of time dilation, big bang, even concepts like multiverse are there in ancient texts - as stories and/or events/verses/shlokas.

Those times, people were not using these theories or concepts. But somehow they knew it, and at least retrospectively, we know these are scientifically proven concepts today.

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I am glad we agree astrology is not science. But it appears our definitions of empirical is different
No, I said, empirical basis to believe. I further said, belief requires much lesser accuracy to, well - believe. It's a "believable science" if predictions came out correct, otherwise, it's destiny (God's will) which triumphs over "science"!

Last edited by Nav-i-gator : 24th September 2018 at 15:59.
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Old 24th September 2018, 16:09   #213
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No, I said, empirical basis to believe. I further said, belief requires much lesser accuracy to, well - believe. It's a "believable science" if predictions came out correct, otherwise, it's destiny (God's will) which triumphs over "science"!
It really is a simple thing to discuss, why are we complicating it ?

Empirical evidence is solely based on how consistent the results are.
Out of 100 predictions, roughly how many can come out true.

A star position from a given latitude and longitude is the same for 1000s of kids born at the same time. Unless a considerable number of them have the same character/life/"time", you cant say astrology has anything to do with empirical evidence.
Forget 1000s, just think about the 10s of kids born in a hospital a given night. Or even twins.

Please note, even a dead clock shows the right time, TWICE a day. Random predictions that work fall in the anecdotal evidence and do not hold value in science.
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Old 24th September 2018, 16:49   #214
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It really is a simple thing to discuss, why are we complicating it ?

Empirical evidence is solely based on how consistent the results are.
Out of 100 predictions, roughly how many can come out true.

A star position from a given latitude and longitude is the same for 1000s of kids born at the same time. Unless a considerable number of them have the same character/life/"time", you cant say astrology has anything to do with empirical evidence.
Forget 1000s, just think about the 10s of kids born in a hospital a given night. Or even twins.

Please note, even a dead clock shows the right time, TWICE a day. Random predictions that work fall in the anecdotal evidence and do not hold value in science.
Two identical kids (mono-zygotic twins in scientific parlance - where both share exactly same DNA) are also not identical as they grow up. Nor do they share the same life/time/character. Astrology has nothing to do with such specific aspects, nor science. There are many other factors that contribute to it that even science of today cannot predict accurately.

Astrology was invented/discovered/written long time ago. Some of the methods/calculations/aspects may no longer hold true and hence the predictions may go on more and more off the accuracy to be termed as empirically correct.

Consider this - a child born to a family in India is expected to live upto about 70 years, provided it survives the first 5 years (considering the average age of Indian male and discounting the infant mortality rate). This is empirically correct prediction, right?

Now there are other factors too, that can affect and lead to failure of this prediction - like eating and drinking habits, pollution, road accidents, smoking habits, so on and so forth. Besides, the same average 70 years age would also change (go higher) by the time the child would reach 70 years of age due to further advancements in medical technology. The prediction that may be fairly accurate based on empirical evidence today, would be wrong in near future. And here we are talking about something that is based on empirical observations prevalent hundreds of years ago.

On a side note, recently there were a lot of news and articles about how AI is giving more accurate predictions about retinal disease prognosis, cancer prognosis and chances of death due to various diseases than doctors. Guess, Medical science will be joining astrology soon, and both being replaced with AI.
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Old 24th September 2018, 16:55   #215
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As a teen I ended up reading these books
These are great books indeed. I was very fond of reading these books during my school days. Unfortunately I lost these books during shifting of our house.

I had forgotten about these books but again bought these books when my son was in seventh standard. The books which I bought were not by Mir publishers. I insisted I want ones which were published by Mir but I was told Mir had shut shop long back.

The physics concepts explained ignite the imagination and makes the reading interesting. Many concepts which are explained with bland formulas in regular text books are described in a way understandable very easily.
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Old 24th September 2018, 17:07   #216
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Originally Posted by Nav-i-gator View Post
On a side note, recently there were a lot of news and articles about how AI is giving more accurate predictions about retinal disease prognosis, cancer prognosis and chances of death due to various diseases than doctors. Guess, Medical science will be joining astrology soon, and both being replaced with AI.
Since I dabble in this at work, I can tell you that AI is based on empirical evidence and therefore always measured using statistical data. However, AI based medical decisions will be expected to have at least 2 sigma (95%) confidence interval (CI). Since astrology may not even have 1 sigma (68%) CI, you can't equate AI with astrology.
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Old 24th September 2018, 17:13   #217
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Originally Posted by Nav-i-gator View Post
Two identical kids (mono-zygotic twins in scientific parlance - where both share exactly same DNA) are also not identical as they grow up. Nor do they share the same life/time/character. Astrology has nothing to do with such specific aspects, nor science. There are many other factors that contribute to it that even science of today cannot predict accurately.
Science is not in that business of prediction of characters and life. I thought I dint mention any of this kind of claim on science's part.
I thought astrology was very much in this exact business because every anecdotal story in this thread is about guidance in life and character.

Quote:
Astrology was invented/discovered/written long time ago. Some of the methods/calculations/aspects may no longer hold true and hence the predictions may go on more and more off the accuracy to be termed as empirically correct.

Consider this - a child born to a family in India is expected to live upto about 70 years, provided it survives the first 5 years (considering the average age of Indian male and discounting the infant mortality rate). This is empirically correct prediction, right?

Now there are other factors too, that can affect and lead to failure of this prediction - like eating and drinking habits, pollution, road accidents, smoking habits, so on and so forth. Besides, the same average 70 years age would also change (go higher) by the time the child would reach 70 years of age due to further advancements in medical technology. The prediction that may be fairly accurate based on empirical evidence today, would be wrong in near future. And here we are talking about something that is based on empirical observations prevalent hundreds of years ago.
What I understand from above is astrology is some sort of technique which is believed to have worked some centuries ago and does not work at all now. The star positions from centuries before which are supposed to be holding some sort of intelligent information is then essentially a belief system with no evidence based backing, correct ?

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On a side note, recently there were a lot of news and articles about how AI is giving more accurate predictions about retinal disease prognosis, cancer prognosis and chances of death due to various diseases than doctors. Guess, Medical science will be joining astrology soon, and both being replaced with AI.
AI is intelligence derived from data. It is not a creation on itself. Of course it would be better than any given doctor, because it would process many times more information many times faster and mathematically more accurate. The only condition is the statistical modelling must be built accurately.
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Old 24th September 2018, 17:13   #218
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Since I dabble in this at work, I can tell you that AI is based on empirical evidence and therefore always measured using statistical data. However, AI based medical decisions will be expected to have at least 2 sigma (95%) confidence interval (CI). Since astrology may not even have 1 sigma (68%) CI, you can't equate AI with astrology.
That's what I said. If AI developed using empirical evidence as available today is asked to predict hundreds/thousands of years ahead of today, let's see at what sigma level accuracy it can predict then. My prediction it would be less accurate than astrology.

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What I understand from above is astrology is some sort of technique which is believed to have worked some centuries ago and does not work at all now. The star positions from centuries before which are supposed to be holding some sort of intelligent information is then essentially a belief system with no evidence based backing, correct ?
Yes, exactly. Astrology is based on empirical evidence of that time, that is not empirically accurate now. It's like a sales forecast based on a baseline carried from 1000 years in history, while the baseline itself have now shifted. It may still give quite an accurate forecast ocassionally. The Technique is still not redundant though.

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Old 24th September 2018, 17:25   #219
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If AI developed using empirical evidence as available today is asked to predict hundreds/thousands of years ahead of today, let's see at what sigma level accuracy it can predict then. My prediction it would be less accurate than astrology.
No, that's not how it works. When AI makes predictions, it will tell you the CI (accuracy) along with it. Astrologers don't have this handicap. They never say what is the CI for their prediction.

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I had forgotten about these books but again bought these books when my son was in seventh standard. The books which I bought were not by Mir publishers. I insisted I want ones which were published by Mir but I was told Mir had shut shop long back.
Worry not, all MIR books are now available for download for free from archive.org.

https://mirtitles.org/2012/05/23/yak...entertainment/
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Old 24th September 2018, 17:37   #220
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No, that's not how it works. When AI makes predictions, it will tell you the CI (accuracy) along with it. Astrologers don't have this handicap. They never say what is the CI for their prediction.
If AI says, there is a 19% chance of a patient with 2 stage cancer of dying in next 30 days, with 30% CI, and I say there is a 50% chance that he die the very next day (50% chance that he lives), which one is more accurate?
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Old 24th September 2018, 17:46   #221
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If AI says, there is a 19% chance of a patient with 2 stage cancer of dying in next 30 days, with 30% CI, and I say there is a 50% chance that he die the very next day (50% chance that he lives), which one is more accurate?
Moot point actually. AI is for decision making. If medical field, if the CI is less than 95%, such data can't be used for decision making. It will be marked as data is inconclusive.

Check out the explanation given by National Health Service UK. If it doesn't meet 95% or 2-sigma, that data is inconclusive (last line in the article).

Last edited by Samurai : 24th September 2018 at 18:02.
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Old 25th September 2018, 10:01   #222
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Many of the scientific methods, calculations and equipment were not even invented/discovered when many scientific theories and mathematical concepts were invented. Ancient Indian scriptures (as an example) had quite precise measurements of the distance of sun from Earth (besides knowing as given that Earth rotates around the sun), concept of calculus, Pythagoras theorem, concept of time dilation, big bang, even concepts like multiverse are there in ancient texts - as stories and/or events/verses/shlokas.

Those times, people were not using these theories or concepts. But somehow they knew it, and at least retrospectively, we know these are scientifically proven concepts today.
I beg to disagree. All the above concepts are ABSOLUTELY science and part of Astronomy. And all these are part of Sanskrit literature available to us today. I can show you the evidences of the problems /numericals by Bhaskaracharya where Pythogoras theorem is discussed.

Just because they are in Sanskrit, we cannot generalize and say they are all part of Astrology and further declare Astrology is science

There is a clear cut difference between Astronomy and Astrology.

Astronomy was there in Ancient India and many people (You can call them rishis or scientists) have done lot of research on Astronomy. All the above are part of Astronomy and all of them have empirical evidences. (It is just that scientific evidences were found by Pythagoras, Newton and others.)

But, when we talk about Astrology, per definition, the study of planetary positions and stars and their effect on human future, behavior. , here is where the superstition and imagination starts.

No Astronomer of India(Rishis) have talked about the effect of stars/ planets on Human beings.

All those who have linked the outcome of Astronomy to predict human nature/future are prejudiced and non-scientific. These are all non-scientific and unempirical.

If anyone have any scientific proof (Mathematical evidences) in any ancient Indian scriptures just to prove the effect of Planetary positions on Human nature, future, then, we can discuss this further. But, no scriptures are available on mathematical /scientific evidences for astrology.

Last edited by gkveda : 25th September 2018 at 10:04.
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Old 26th September 2018, 16:02   #223
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A blind man wouldn't "look" - he would feel, grope, bump and bang into things much like scientists do with anything that they cannot prove.

If the blind man was a scientist, after feeling, groping, bumping and banging into things, he would prove/conclude that there was no cat in the room.

Last edited by aah78 : 27th September 2018 at 19:25. Reason: Post fixed - spacing.
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Old 26th September 2018, 16:54   #224
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Originally Posted by Nav-i-gator View Post

On a side note, recently there were a lot of news and articles about how AI is giving more accurate predictions about retinal disease prognosis, cancer prognosis and chances of death due to various diseases than doctors. Guess, Medical science will be joining astrology soon, and both being replaced with AI.

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Just putting a thought out- Astrology is just Big Data.

Crores of births, lives and deaths recorded to find similarities, trends and outcomes based on parameters like birth dates, birth times, planetary positions etc, etc.

What astrologers tell us are the the probable outcomes. The more in-depth analysis the astrologer does, better the prediction.

PS: Not a believer, did Nadishastra along with parents- it blew my 16 year old mind, never went back. Now I take my life as a surprise
I tried to say the same thing in my post, yours is much better
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Old 26th September 2018, 16:58   #225
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I tried to say the same thing in my post, yours is much better
Yes, but AI is a science application and requires 95% confidence interval. Astrological predictions have never come close to that, which makes it no different than random coincidence.
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