All of us love to know what is ahead for us in the future. That is why every newspaper and magazine gives daily, weekly, monthly forecasts for your star sign. Of course there are many streams of foretelling the future—Indian and Western astrology, solar and lunar astrology, palmistry, reading the fall of shells that are thrown, reading coffee or tea dregs at the bottom of a cup, reading faces and the mystical crystal ball that is supposed to show the picture of the man you will marry.
The Tarot card has become the rage however in modern media. This method is based on the belief that the cards give and insight into the present and future. It is greatly dependant on psychology and is very close to the Prashnam that is part of Indian astrology.
Feng Shui is hugely popular along with Vaasthu shastra. Feng shui has popularly been reduced to the placing of objects, mainly of furniture and lucky or harmonising objects representing the elements of water, wind, fire and earth in one’s home or office to change and influence the environment. Feng shui is supposed to have an effect on health, wealth and personal relationships.
Human beings seek to know the future not only when they are facing problems. There is this atavistic pleasure that goads us to delve into the future. Sceptics and critics say that any prediction based on your date of birth and star sign cannot be applicable as every twelfth person on the globe belongs to one particular sign.
Have you read the forecasts for all the signs in a magazine or newspaper? The words and the predictions are generally the same—travel, good luck, change, work environment, stress, tension, family, entertainment, fun, illness, communications, foreign touch, hard work—these are some of the words and phrases that appear again and again. You may argue that these are the common considerations for most people. So it is easy to play around with these words and predict for people born under the signs ranging from Aries to Taurus.
How many times have we watched the astro-performers on TV predicting wins for cricketers, politicians, film personalities, warning about disasters etc. and then laughing at the results that are the opposite of such predictions? There used to be a time when the year’s forecast was given at the beginning of the calendar year and when the new panchangam was read in mid-April. Now ever so often there is some forecast based on Ugadhi, Chinese New Year, Baisakhi, Dussera, Diwali and any change in the political scene.
So who do we depend on to satisfy our thirst to know the future? Most people will say, “We have a family astrologer/guru/soothsayer. We will go only to him/her”. So are the forecasters in print media and TV just space fillers? I am happy when the forecast turns out good. I close my eyes if there are any negative predictions—don’t lose your temper, beware of arguments, watch your feet, beware of minor accidents etc. So when I argue with my husband or the house help, or the auto driver I can always blame it on my day’s reading. Anyway, these incidents keep happening whether they have been forecast or not.
The other day I got an SMS saying “think of a great guru and pass this message to eleven people; a miracle will surely take place”. This was the third time I got it and having ignored the previous two I thought to myself—third time should surely be lucky and patiently counted off the eleven on my fingers as I sent the messages. Lo behold! A miracle happened..a glass dish that was missing (I thought my daughter had taken it away) turned up at the back of a drawer hiding inside a stainless steel vessel!
I am happy at the outcome but have made up my mind not to forward any email or SMS’s that insists that if I send it to ‘N’ number of people I will get the fruits of peace, good luck, happiness, lottery—whatever—for my deed. The mobile company and broadband service provider is making money at my cost.
So, the final word on my future is as Rhett Butler said in ‘Gone With The Wind’, “Frankly darling, I don’t give a damn”!