False Religion – Doctrines of Devils – Idol Worship – Witchcraft
In the latter days, there will be a noticeable rise in cults, the occult, false idols, false teachers and deceiving religions:
1 Timothy 4:1-2 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron.
Matthew 24:5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
Deuteronomy 4:16 Lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female,
2 Peter 2, 1-2 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
Deuteronomy 18:10 There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch.
Deuteronomy 18:11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
Latter Day Doctrines of Devils / False Religions: Signs of the times: Horoscopes rise again online
Could widespread feelings of anger and powerlessness be behind the astrology boom?
The Guardian. Friday, August 9, 2019.
A notification from the astrology app Co-Star recently told 27-year-old Bridget: “It’s OK to catch feelings.” Bridget knows how ridiculous that sounds, she says, and how baffled older people might be by the enthusiasm with which she follows its advice. But she believes the app’s tongue-in-cheek nature is tapping into something more profound: young people’s growing disillusionment with religious and political structures.
Bridget is not alone. Astrology is without doubt having a cultural moment. As well as the rapid proliferation of apps such as Co-Star, which has been downloaded more than 3m times since 2017, astrology memes are a staple on Instagram and Twitter, and have sparked a huge boost in traffic to women’s news sites; a typical horoscope post on the Cut got 150% more hits in 2017 than in 2016, while gal-dem, which introduced a horoscope column in March, said posts performed consistently well.
Marissa Malik, an astrologist and horoscope writer for gal-dem, puts the resurgent interest in astrology down to widespread anger and frustration with job insecurity, the housing crisis and an ecological system on the brink of collapse.
“People feel there’s so little we can do in terms of changing politics in a way that benefits marginalised people,” she said. “Astrology reminds us that there’s something bigger than humans on Earth influencing us. Thinking of the world as just being governed by the criminals it is now is pretty grim.”
While people still turn to professional astrologers to ask what Wade Caves, a tutor at the School of Traditional Astrology based in the UK, describes as “bread and butter” questions – “When will I get married?” or “Will I get that job promotion?” – the recent boom in astrology is also concerned with social change. “There’s a lot of folks who are looking at astrology to understand what is called ‘late-stage capitalism’, and some of it is tied with feminism and the queer movement,” he said.
Co-Star and other iterations such as TimePassages, The Pattern, and Sanctuary require users to submit their date of birth, including the exact time they were born and the location, to provide instantaneous “birth charts” and access information on planetary movements to give personalised readings. Users can share each other’s personalised charts to see how compatible they are with friends and romantic interests.
It’s a world away from the work that Sharon Knight, a professional astrologer with 25 years’ experience, did just a few decades ago. “When I learned astrology, we didn’t have any computers,” she said. “It would take you hours and hours to hand-calculate a chart, especially if you’re not good at maths. It was a really tedious process, but with technology, you put the data in and out comes the chart.”
The apps’ personalised and at times snarky advice, which ranges from “try not to control other people today” to “you will not fall apart right now”, has helped propel astrology back into the mainstream. Malik said these messages gave people the space to be mindful of how they felt and how their actions affected others.
While many will despair at the rise of a pseudoscience, some scientists can see an upside. “From a science communication point of view, it’s a good opportunity to explore the big differences between astronomy and astrology,” said Rebekah Higgitt, a senior lecturer in the history of science at University of Kent. “One is based on large amounts of observational data and mathematical calculation, while the latter’s claim that the positions of the planets have specific and predictable influences on human affairs has no basis in science.”
Over the last year, apps such as Co-Star and Sanctuary have attracted millions in venture capital funding. But professional astrologers are wary of the information being put out, and warn of the potential loss of intimacy and storytelling that has long been part of their craft.
Caves said he turned down the opportunity to write and help develop astrology apps because astrology has always been about people. “We lose the personal connection and touch with these apps,” he said.
Malik does not see herself as an astrologer at odds with technology, but fears companies could attempt to co-opt people’s attempts to understand themselves and the world around them. “Astrology allows us to think from a macro perspective, giving us hope and motivation,” she said, adding that it encouraged people to want to change themselves and change the world around them. “I hope that motivation and hope will lead to political revolution, but that’s harder when big tech is involved.”
But isn’t it all just superstition? Bridget, like many of the new wave of adherents, is purposefully vague when asked if she actually believes in astrology. She says it is the wrong question to ask. “I think anything that feels real is real in a way. And if I find the answers to questions I want through astrology and horoscopes, that makes it real. Do I think all the answers to life’s questions are found in the planet placements when someone was born? No. But even science doesn’t have all life’s answers.”