Some people think that in view of my post on astrology I have changed my view about it. That is not so. I wrote it , as I mentioned there, because I thought some people may find it interesting, though I also mentioned there that I was reluctant to write it as I may be misunderstood.
I have been throughout consistent in my view that for progress Indians must adopt the scientific attitude and scientific outlook. In other words, they must develop rational and questioning minds about issues for solving the country's massive problems of poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, healthcare, education, etc. and give up superstitions like belief in astrology or palmistry.
To those who believe in astrology or palmistry I ask a simple question : how can the movement of the stars, planets and other heavenly bodies decide whether one will become a doctor or engineer or lawyer, or whether one will die at the age of 30 or 50 or 80 ? Is there any rational connection between the two ? In fact there is none. And yet people believe in such superstitions.
My estimate is that over 90% people in India believe in astrology and palmistry. I have even seen scientists, senior and distinguished lawyers and doctors consulting astrologists. Why is that so ?
The reason is that the chance factor still plays an overwhelming role in our lives, which is due to the low development of science as yet, compared to what it will be in 100 or 200 years from now.
We plan one thing, but something else happens. Hence we cannot properly control our lives. As a result we start believing that this is due to the influence of some supernatural force or the movements of the heavenly bodies, which is not true. It is due to the low development of science in the world as yet.
For example, although three fourths of the world's surface is covered with water, there are water shortages in vast areas in the world, including in India. One reason for this is because we have not as yet been able to discover an inexpensive method for converting salt water into fresh water ( the present methods like reverse osmosis are very expensive). But I am sure that with scientific research one day such a method will be found.
Another example is the energy shortage in the world. One solution for this could be the harnessing of fusion energy. There are two kinds of nuclear reactions, fission and fusion. We have been able to harness fission ( in which heavy atoms like uranium-235 or plutonium are split) and all the nuclear reactors in the world for producing electricity use the fission process, but there are many dangers in it e.g. disposal of nuclear waste, which if not properly done can cause cancer and other illnesses. But the fusion process ( involving fusion or joining of light atoms such as hydrogen) could be more useful as there is almost an inexhaustible amount of hydrogen in the world ( a water molecule contains two atoms of hydrogen combined with one atom of oxygen ). The difficulty is that fusion takes place at very high temperatures, at millions of degrees centigrade. So we have to discover by scientific research some method of producing fusion at lower temperatures, and on this problem research is going on at CERN and other scientific institutes in the world, but with no concrete result as yet.
About a 100 or 200 years from now many of today's problems will have been solved, and science will have developed so much as compared to what it is now ( though of course scientific progress has no end) that we will be largely able to control our lives, and then what we plan will ordinarily happen. At that stage of human history people will stop believing in astrology or palmistry, and other superstitions.