Astrology, Psychics and Other Fortune-Telling


The practice of trying to divine the future, whether by directly occult means such as calling up spirits (divination, properly speaking), asking questions of spirits (e.g. a Ouiji Board) or by "reading it" in cards, numbers, the stars etc., is forbidden by the First Commandment. The future is known to God alone, who is its Master. Besides being illicit means to gain knowledge (the dead, the spirits, occult powers), such practices suggest that man is not, by means of free-will, a cooperator with God in determining his future. The use of these grievously sinful practices can lead to a fatalistic perspective on  life, in which the person feels bound to the judgements of psychics, readers and other third parties, rather than his God-given reason and knowledge of the moral law.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church has this to say on these matters,

2115 God can reveal the future to his prophets or to other saints. Still, a sound Christian attitude consists in putting oneself confidently into the hands of Providence for whatever concerns the future, and giving up all unhealthy curiosity about it. Improvidence, however, can constitute a lack of responsibility.

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.


Answered by Colin B. Donovan, STL

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