Astrologi, kosmobiologi og moderne vitenskap
Verdens eldste vitenskap gir grobunn for ny erkjennelse.
Skrevet av forskerne H. J. Eysenck og D.K.B. Nias.
Astrologien er, sammen med astronomien, en av de eldste vitenskapene, med røtter langt bak i historien. Men mens astronomien betraktes som en i aller høyeste grad seriøs vitenskap, ser de fleste vitenskapsmenn på astrologien med den største skepsis, hvis de overhodet interesserer seg for emnet.
Også for den vanlige mann og kvinne står astrologien i et eget lys: Noen tror fullt og fast på det astrologene sier, de fleste stiller seg avvisende, selv om de gjerne leser ukebladenes horoskoper – det kan jo være noe i det allikevel! For alle er vi opptatt av fremtiden og av de spørsmål astrologene sier de kan gi svar på: Hva skal jeg gjøre? Hvem skal jeg velge? Hvordan kommer livet mitt til å arte seg? Vil jeg bli lykkelig, rik og berømt?
Forfatterne av denne boken er begge anerkjente vitenskapsmenn. Med åpenhet og kritisk blikk har de satt lupen på de forskjellige påstandene som settes frem i astrologiens navn.
Er det overhodet noen sammenheng mellom stjernenes stilling på himmelen og den enkeltes skjebne?
Er den nye vitenskapen – kosmobiologien – svaret på årtusengammel viten?
Svarene Eysenck og Nias gir i denne boken, vil nok overraske de fleste…
H.J. Eysenck og D.K.B. Nias er begge knyttet til psykiatrisk institutt ved London University og har høstet internasjonalat ry for sin forskning.
246 sider. Pocketbok. 1987.
1. Lukkede og åpne sinn
Autoritet og beviser
Skeptikere og troende
Psykologer ser på astrologien
Innvendinger mot astrologien
PLanen i boken
2. Hva er astrologi?
Tolkningen av fødselshoroskopet
3. Kan astrologien være sann?
Etterprøving av resultatene
Hvorfor folk tror
4. Soltegn og personlighet
Uvitende og velorienterte forsøkspersoner
Soltegn og yrke
5. Personlige egenskaper
Astrologisk skjønn på grunnlag av utseendet
Tvillinger og kosmiske tvillinger
Rytmene hos dyr
Det beste tidspunktet å bli født på?
Kriminalitet, berømmelse og årstider
7. Sykluser og solflekker
Sykluser i histioren
Solflekker og været
Været og vi
Solflekker og sinnet
Solflekker og helsetilstanden
8. Planetariske krefter
Årsakene til solflekker
John Nelsons arbeid
Vurdering av Nelsons påstander
Månefasene og tidevannet
Mennesket – fødsel og død
Månefase, kriminalitet og selvmord
10. Ekteparet Gauquelins arbeid
Forsøkte på å finne en forklaring
11. Konklusjoner og perspektiver
Vitenskap og astrologi
Hans Jürgen Eysenck (4.3.1916 in Berlin, Germany – 4.9.1997 in London, UK) was a psychologist best remembered for his work on intelligence and personality, though he worked in a wide range of areas. At the time of his death, Eysenck was the living psychologist most frequently cited in science journals.
Hans Eysenck was born in Germany, but moved to England as a young man in the 1930s because of his opposition to the Nazi party. Eysenck was the founding editor of the journal Personality and Individual Differneces, and authored over 50 books and over 900 academic articles. He aroused intense debate with his controversial dealing with variation in IQ among racial groups.
Life and work
Eysenck was Professor of Psychology at the Institute of Psychiatry (IoP) from 1955 to 1983. He was a major contributor to the modern scientific theory of personality and a brilliant teacher who also played a crucial role in the establishment of behavioural treatments for mental disorders.
However, Eysencks work was often controversial. Publications in which Eysencks views have roused controversy include (chronologically):
- A paper in the 1950s concluding that available data “fail to support the hypothesis that psychotherapy facilitates recovery from neurotic disorder”.
- A chapter in Uses and Abuses of Psychology (1953) entitled “What is wrong with psychoanalysis”.
- Race, Intelligence and Education (1971) (in the US: The IQ Argument)
- Sex, Violence and the Media (1978).
- Astrology – Science or Superstition? (1982)
- Smoking, Personality and Stress (1991)
Eysenck also earned criticism for accepting funding from the Pioneer Fund, a eugenics organization that has been controversial.
By far the most acrimonious of the debates has been that over the role of genetics in IQ differences, which led to Eysenck famously being punched on the nose during a talk at the London School of Economics.
Eysencks attitude is summarised in his autobiography Rebel with a Cause(Transaction Publishers (1997)): “I always felt that a scientist owes the world only one thing, and that is the truth as he sees it. If the truth contradicts deeply held beliefs, that is too bad. Tact and diplomacy are fine in international relations, in politics, perhaps even in business; in science only one thing matters, and that is the facts.”
Eysencks model of personality (P-E-N)
Eysenck was one of the first psychologists to study personality with the method of factor analysis, a statistical technique introduced by Charles Spearman. Eysencks results suggested two main personality factors. The first factor was the tendency to experience negative emotions, and Eysenck referred to it as Neuroticism. The second factor was the tendency to enjoy positive events, especially social events, and Eysenck named it Extraversion. The two personality dimensions were described in his 1947 book Dimensions of Personality. It is common practice in personality psychology to refer to the dimensions by the first letters, E and N.
E and N provided a 2-dimensional space to describe individual differences in behaviour. An analogy can be made to how latitude and longitude describe a point on the face of the earth. Also, Eysenck noted how these two dimensions were similar to the four personality types first proposed by the Greek physician Hippocrates.
- High N and High E = Choleric type
- High N and Low E = Melancholic type
- Low N and High E = Sanguine type
- Low N and Low E = Phlegmatic type
The third dimension, psychoticism, was added to the model in the late 1970s, based upon collaborations between Eysenck and his wife, Sybil B. G. Eysenck, who is the current editor of Personality and Individual Differences.
The major strength of Eysencks model was to provide detailed theory of the causes of personality. For example, Eysenck proposed that extraversion was caused by variability in cortical arousal: “introverts are characterized by higher levels of activity than extraverts and so are chronically more cortically aroused than extraverts”. While it seems counterintuitive to suppose that introverts aremore aroused than extraverts, the putative effect this has on behaviour is such that the introvert seeks lower levels of stimulation. Conversely, the extravert seeks to heighten his or her arousal to a more optimal level (as predicted by the Yerkes-Dodson Law) by increased activity, social engagement and other stimulation-seeking behaviours.
Comparison with other theories
The major alternative to Eysencks three factor model of personality is a model that makes use of five broad traits, often called the Big Five model. The traits in the Big Five are as follows:
- Openness to experience
Extraversion and Neuroticism in the Big Five are similar to Eysencks traits of the same name. However, what Eysenck calls the trait of Psychoticism corresponds to two traits in the Big Five model: Conscientiousness and Agreeableness. Eysencks personality system did not address Openness to experience. He argued that his approach was a better description of personality (Eysenck, 1992a; 1992b).
Another important model of personality is that of Jeffrey Alan Gray, a former student of his.
Eysenck always insisted that his use of the term “extraversion” does not correspond to the usage adopted by Carl Jung, and has also challenged the popular belief that Jung coined the term.
Psychometric scales relevant to Eysencks theory
Eysencks theory of personality is closely linked with the scales that he and his co-workers developed. These include the Maudsley Medical Questionnaire, Eysenck Personality Inventory (EPI), Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ) and Sensation Seeking Scale (developed in conjunction with Marvin Zuckerman). The Eysenck Personality Profiler (EPP) breaks down different facets of each trait considered in the model. There has been some debate about whether these facets should include impulsivity as a facet of extraversion as Eysenck declared in his early work; or psychoticism. Eysenck declared for the latter, in later work.
Eysencks later work
In 1994 he was one of 52 signatories on “Mainstream Science on Intelligence,” an editorial written by Linda Gottfredson and published in the Wall Street Journal, which defended the findings on race and intelligence in the Bell Curve.
Eysenck made early contributions to fields such as personality by express and explicit commitment to a very rigorous adherence to scientific methodology, as Eysenck believed that scientific methodology was required for progress in personality psychology. He used, for example, factor analysis, a rigorous statistical method, to support his personality model. His early work showed Eysenck to be an especially strong critic of psychoanalysis as a form of therapy, preferring behaviour therapy. Despite this strongly scientific interest, Eysenck was not shy, in later work, of giving attention to parapsychology and astrology. Indeed, he believed that empirical evidence supported the existence of paranormal abilities.