This stars-struck British MP believes in Indian astrology

  • Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times, London
  • Updated: Jul 26, 2014 17:03 IST

Some believe in astrology while others dismiss it or enjoy it as entertainment, but one British MP from the ruling Conservative party says he is “absolutely convinced” of its benefits, and wants it to be more widely used.

Comments about astrology by David Tredinnick, MP from Bosworth, inside and outside parliament have prompted much online ridicule, but he insists astrology has a “proven track record”. He has been to India and studied the ‘Lahiri’ system of astrology, he says.

A member of the House of Commons health select committee, Tredinnick says he has studied astrology and healthcare for 20 years and now wants astrology to be incorporated into medicine. He is also member of the science and technology select committee.

Tredinnick, who spoke on astrology at the recent Glastonbury festival, told the House of Commons before it rose for recess on Tuesday: “I am absolutely convinced that those who look at the map of the sky for the day that they were born and receive some professional guidance will find out a lot about themselves, and it will make their life easier.”

He added: “I have been to India and talked to people there and to the Indian Government about the Indian astrological system, Lahiri, which is part of their culture. In western culture, Culpeper’s book, ‘Astrological Judgement of Disease from the Decumbiture of the Sick’ of 1655 is the longest in print, so in all cultures we have that tradition.”

His remarks evoked some laughter among MPs, but he says he is not discouraged by “relentless attacks” by sceptics. On Friday, he claimed that a number of MPs had come to him for advice, and that he had compiled astrology charts for them.

“There is no logic in attacking something that has a proven track record,” he told BBC in an interview, adding that herbal remedies and healing were now becoming accepted in parts of the National Health Service.

He said he now wanted to promote astrology, which he claimed was not just about predicting the future, but gaining an understanding of personal problems.

According to him, Chris Patten, chancellor of the University of Oxford and Britain’s last governor of Hong Kong, had an official astrologer.

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