Rationalists rejoice, believers (read optimists) think again. A study done by the University of Manchester claims that the zodiac has no impact on our personal relationships and it exerts no influence on our ‘chances of marrying or staying married’. To prove their point, they gave the example of the roller-coaster relationship between Hollywood diva Elizabeth Taylor, a Piscean, and broodingly sexy Richard Burton, a Scorpio. The two sun signs are considered to be among the most perfect fits in relationships. But, the relationship between ‘Cleopatra’ and ‘Anthony’ was turbulent to say the least. One wonders how Indian politicians are going to react to this, considering even their oath-taking ceremonies are dictated by the stars.
Over the years, horoscope columnists have become stars and the faithful do not move a muscle without consulting their daily predictions. In addition, we now have a choice of fortune dispensers, from tarot card readers to feng shui and vaastu experts to help us cope with our everyday travails. Add to these, the vanishing tribe of fortune-tellers and their parrots. We are really spoilt for choice.
Will the findings dissuade us from rushing to the Bejan Daruwallas and Linda Goodmans? Unlikely, as the researchers themselves have agreed. We will always want to know what will be the fate of the Indian cricket team before an important series (though everyone has their own take), the course of the Abhishek-Aishwarya marriage or how Mayawati will fare at the hustings. Non-believers, on the other hand, will continue believing in what Voltaire said centuries ago: “Superstition is to religion what astrology is to astronomy: the mad daughter of a wise mother.”