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Between Science and Religion: An Astrological Interpretation of the Asian Tsunami in India

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Astrology plays an important role in Indian social life. Indian astrologers' claim to have accurately predicted the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, or the Asian Tsunami, was an effort to legitimize astrology as a full science. This effort demonstrates a difficulty in knowledge categorization, for in India, astrology is neither classified as a science nor as a religion. This is a result of the idea of an Indian nation-state, which rests upon both science and religion as foundations, but at the expense of expelling astrology from religion for not being scientific. However, as astrology continues to be important in India, the astrological interpretation of the Indian Ocean Tsunami drew substantial public attention. Astrology's significant presence in Indian society shows the role of a mature civil society in India as well.

Affiliations: 1: School of Sociology, China University of Political Science and Law


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