As a child, I would always turn the newspaper to the horoscope column and meticulously point my little index finger to my zodiac sign, Scorpio. I would then read what could happen to me that day. Is it not fascinating to know that? Who wouldn’t want to know what lies ahead? As I decided to practice my faith again, I once read that depending on the horoscope is a sin. Although not shocked, I still wondered, how? In this post, we will tackle this. Can Catholics believe in zodiac signs?
The Catholic Church does not believe in the Zodiac. This is because the Zodiac, as a concept, is based on astrology, which has been condemned by the Church since at least the late 16th century.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that
CCC 2116 “All forms of divination are to be rejected: recourse to Satan or demons, conjuring up the dead or other practices falsely supposed to unveil the future. Consulting horoscopes, astrology, palm reading, interpretation of omens and lots, the phenomena of clairvoyance, and recourse to mediums all conceal a desire for power over time, history, and, in the last analysis, other human beings, as well as a wish to conciliate hidden powers. They contradict the honor, respect, and loving fear that we owe to God alone.”
As a result, Catholics cannot believe in zodiac signs. Catholics should not practice astrology or consult with astrologers.
Believing in zodiac signs also contradicts the first commandment.
“I am the Lord your God; you shall not have strange gods before Me.”
By depending on it, we discard the power of God.
God is all-knowing and cannot be replaced by human knowledge. The Church believes that the practice of having astrological signs or horoscopes leads people away from God and into a life of sin.
Catholic Faith vs Astrology
Zodiac or Astrology is incompatible with the Catholic faith. It refutes the notion that the location of heavenly bodies might influence your personality or destiny.
The honor, and devotion we owe to God are opposed by astrology. Catholics are called to have faith in God’s infinite power, which means believing that only He can determine our future.
If you feel like your faith is being compromised by believing in astrology, you should probably rethink your beliefs. If your faith isn’t strong enough, you may be more susceptible to temptation and sin.
The Catholic Church also condemns divination, which is another term for fortune-telling or predicting the future via cards or other means.
The Church says that all such activities are sinful and must be avoided by Catholics at all costs.
But how about the magi who used astrology to find Jesus?
Note that astrology is different with astronomy.
Astronomy is the study of the universe and its contents outside of Earth’s atmosphere. It deals with celestial objects, space, and the physical universe as a whole.
On the other hand, astrology is the study how the movements and positions of these celestial objects affect people and events on earth.
The magi studied astronomy.
The Bible strictly forbids divination.
“Let there not be found among you anyone who causes their son or daughter to pass through the fire, or practices divination, or is a soothsayer, augur, or sorcerer, or who casts spells, consults ghosts and spirits, or seeks oracles from the dead. Anyone who does such things is an abomination to the Lord, and because of such abominations the Lord, your God, is dispossessing them before you.”
Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
These verses make it clear that God is in control of everything, including our fate.
This is why we should not look to horoscopes or other forms of divination for answers about our future.
Mortal or Venial Sin
Is it a sin to believe in Zodiac Signs?
Yes. It is a sin to believe in Zodiac Signs. It breaks the 1st commandment therefore a grave matter.
As to whether it is a mortal or venial sin.
Let’s recap the conditions of mortal sin.
- It must involve grave matter
- Committed in full knowledge
- Committed with deliberate consent
Using belief in zodiac sign as an example. If you choose to believe in it despite you know it is a sin, you are committing a mortal sin.
First, as mentioned, it breaks the first commandment which makes it a grave matter.
Next, you are fully aware that it is a sin.
Lastly, you intentionally believe in it.
Remember that all conditions must be present.
If any of the above is missing, then it will fall as a venial sin.
Confessing a mortal sin is a must. While confessing a venial sin is recommended and is a good practice.
To confess, you can just simply mention to the priest that you have been believing in the zodiac signs.
You can also state the times you fell into believing in it. If you are not sure, you can just say that you are not sure of the times you committed it.
The priest will then offer you counsel, ask you for penance, and finally absolve you.
I know it’s hard to stay away from things we used to believe in. But as Catholics, we should strive to practice our faith and commit to it. One way is to reject belief in astrology such as zodiac signs for it replaces God.
Just like what Pope Francis said,
“When we do not cling to the Word of the Lord but consult horoscopes and fortune-tellers, we begin to sink.”
May we all believe only in one God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Most Blessed Virgin Mary, pray for us.