May 27, 2013

Is it beneficial to go to astrologers?

Question from devotee: When the astrologer tells us our destiny, we can prepare ourselves for it. So it seems to be advantageous to know what destiny has in store for us. Isn't it very beneficial to go to astrologers?

Answer by Swamiji: Even if the astrologer's predictions are accurate, they are usually disadvantageous to be told. Let us suppose the astrologer informed you that after two years your business will increase manifold. On hearing this, your natural response will be, "Oh is that so? Then I do not need to work very hard. I am going to succeed in any case." In other words, if you come to know of a good destiny, you will reduce your efforts for success. Now consider what will happen if the astrologer says that your business will crash after ten years. On hearing this, you will think, "Really, my business is going to crash? O God, what will I do? What will I do? What will I do? ..." Whether the business crashes or not, premature worries will make your heart crash. In this way, on being told a good destiny, you will become lazy, and on being told a bad destiny, you will become worried. So there is no advantage in knowing your destiny. Whatever is written in it, will come by itself. The present is in your hands, and your duty is to put in your best efforts now. Focus on making your destiny rather than knowing it. Besides, the astrologer's predictions are only partially accurate. In Kaliyug, the present age, there are hardly any expert astrologers. With their rudimentary knowledge, they make guesses. A small portion of their predictions turn out right, and their business keeps running. I remember a joke about this. Khushwant Singh, was the Editor of "Illustrated Weekly" in the 1970's, which was India's number one news magazine at that time. He confessed later that his astrologer, who wrote the Zodiac predictions of the week, had left the job. Thenceforth, for the next three years, Khushwant Singh did not hire another astrologer; he would write the predictions himself. Unaware of this, people would often pay compliments about the accuracy of the astrological predictions of his magazine. So a good policy is to take the predictions of astrologers with a pinch of salt, and instead focus on your efforts. A famous Urdu poet put it very aptly when he said:
khudī ko kara bulanda itanā ki hara takadīra se pahale
khudā khuda bande se puchhe batā terī razā kyā hai 
"Make your efforts so strong that before giving you the results of your destiny God Himself asks you what you want."