Panic in the zodiac: astrologers quash fears over ‘new’ 13th sign


#Astronomy #ZodiacPanic in the zodiac: astrologers quash fears over ‘new’ 13th sign : Unflappable Libras suddenly felt cranky and creative. Diplomatic Geminis woke up patriotic. Sagittariuses didn’t know what to think. The Zodiac has a new order – or so people think – and left astrologers and astronomers oddly aligned, trying to calm people down.

“All my clients are freaking out,” said Shelley Ackerman, a New York-based astrologer and member of the American Federation of Astrologers. “It’s ridiculous.”

Ackerman’s clients lost their composure because of a Nasa blogpost about constellations that described a 13th sign, the snake-bearer Ophiuchus, devised by Babylonians about 3,000 years ago but left out of their 12-month calendar.

Because Earth’s axis has slowly shifted over the centuries, shifting the perspective of the stars, Ophiuchus now spends more time aligned with the sun than before, a change noticed years ago.

Many saw their birthdays suddenly ticked backward one sign – potentially changing their whole identity.

The space agency tried to warn people not to read too much into the calendar or the many zodiacal constellations: “Astrology is something else. It’s not science.” But Inattentive news sites blamed Nasa or declared: “your life is a lie.” People panicked.

“Strangers are messaging astrologers, saying, ‘Please don’t tell me I’m Cancerian,’ or ‘For God’s sake, I’m not a Virgo,’” Ackerman said. “It’s really upsetting people.”

Jessica Adams, the astrologer for Cosmopolitan magazine in Australia, said she heard from “an avalanche of people worried that they were no longer a Leo and concerned that astrology is a fraud”.