“a”‘s Question: Should astrologers predict death? And can they?

Hello Anne

I wanted to ask you something – I am 36 and my husband passed away unexpectedly last year (he was 38). We have had our horoscopes checked (birth charts) several times by different astrologers and have had our kids horoscopes done as well. All of them suggested a long life for him. We have also tried alternate astrologies like ‘nadi jothidam’ (pl google for the meaning). In fact, after he passed away we took his horoscope and mine to an astrologer and the astrologer says there is nothing to predict a shorter life span. I know his parents check horoscopes as well ( and no major problems predicted).

Why do you think all the forecasts failed to predict this or at least potential problems?

Astrologer at Workastrologer at work….

Dear “a”, 

you have certainly through your own painful experience and natural desire to find some answers, brought to me a question with which all astrologers should – and do –  grapple, since it raises such fundamental ethical issues. The first one is whether astrologers should attempt to predict death, or not. Most reputable astrologers recognise that they should not do this – I count myself very definitely amongst them, as does well-known medical astrologer  Eileen Nauman, a link to whose very useful and informative article  appears below.

A very short and blunt answer to your question, however, is this: astrologers’ track record on prediction over many centuries, indeed millennia, is very mixed indeed. 

Sometimes they have been stunningly accurate in predicting how the planetary energies in an individual’s or a nation’s horoscope will manifest. For example, a famous one was made by Luc Gauricus in 1555 to the effect that King Henry II of France (then aged thirty-seven) was in danger of death in his forty-second year, by a head injury incurred in single combat in an enclosed space. And five years later Henry duly died of a lance splinter which entered his eyes and pierced his brain.

However, there have also been some spectacular failures, e.g., for astrologers to predict that the Munich agreement of 1938 would lead to World War II. 

The most striking recent individual example of failure I have heard – via his son, in an astrology seminar during the 1990s – is that of a well-known European astrologer. This man predicted the day of his own death, and went public with it. What happened on the day? He developed a very bad cold….

I did some research for you on the internet and found this very comprehensive article by medical astrologer EileenNauman which covers all the points I would have made, and many more besides!

I hope you will find it helpful and illuminating of your questions: 


Here, also, is a recent article of mine on the subject of prediction which you might also find useful:


I do hope that what I’ve said in this brief post, plus reflection on the material in the articles, helps you to arrive at a viewpoint which eventually brings you some peace. 

With all good wishes




500 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2014

Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page of Writing from the Twelfth House

3 responses to ““a”‘s Question: Should astrologers predict death? And can they?

  1. Pingback: Should astrologers predict death? And can they? | Writing from the Twelfth House

  2. Of course I don’t have to tell you how a similar confusion between Biblical prophecy and prediction has dogged the church! And of course, there’s that famous study by Leon Festinger, et.al, called When Prophecy Fails. The arrival of the millenium, assorted flying saucer predictions – they’re all part of the human quest for certainty.

    One of the best tweets I ever saw came from “Jesus”, back when Harold Camping, an American evangelist, was predicting the end of the world. As Jesus so neatly put it, “It’s not over until I say it’s over!” Humorous, and perspective restoring.

    To be frank, even if someone had the power to tell me the day and hour of my death, I wouldn’t want to know. With that kind of knowledge, I don’t know how anyone could avoid focusing on death, rather than life.


    • Yes, I feel the same as you do. I think that the dialectic between Knowing that we must die, but not knowing when, is a great driver of human creativity at a whole number of levels.


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