Friday, 15 May 2009

Cold comfort

In a recession, times are hard… unless you are in a church or the astrology business apparently! Then activity is going up!

It does come down to the need to know there is some form of control going on, rather than events being random, either a god or the stars or... just something! People don’t randomness, we're pattern seeking creatures, and need to know there is a pattern somewhere. Couple this with a need for security that leads to the idea of higher authority, and mix in the stress of hard economic times, and it's no wonder business is good (for some businesses).

While seeking solace is nice, there are those who prey on those who seek solace. Now, while this is in the same piece as me mentioning religion and astrology, I’m not saying everyone in those occupations are out for the kill. But there definitely are some. There are people who prey on misery, and astrology, medium and other new age delusions often do well in those times, and those who, as it were, market themselves aggressively and really turn the screws can make out like bandits (as the expression goes. Presumably not bandits that got caught).

Not just in economic times either, but any trying times, particularly medical troubles, or relationship troubles. (This is why cold reading works so well, people have a broad range of common problems.) In short, at emotional times, there are those who earn their living well.

And because of the emotionality, it is hard to show that there is a problem. The scientific method has demonstrated time and again that astrology is bunk, but it bobs along like the proverbial unsinkable rubber duck.

We'll recover from this recession, which we have done before irregardless of the imaginary power believed in. And we’ll do it facing reality.


No comments: