Happy Birthday, Rest In Peace

A couple of years ago, an astrologer I know gave a talk in which he demonstrated the natal chart and death chart of the same person. Lo and behold the planets in the latter made a whole load of transits (mainly conjunctions) with those in the former! Curiously though these conjunctions were not to my mind associated with death in particular – it was just, so this astrologer claimed, the fact that there were a lot of them.

I scoffed. “If there were anything to this,” I said, trying to do a reductio ad absurdum, “that would mean that there is an increased likelihood of dying on your birthday, because that is the one transit with your natal chart – the Solar Return – which happens to everyone every year!” How I laughed…

… Until today when I read this morning’s Daily Telegraph, in which there was an article entitled We are more likely to die on our birthday than any other day.

According to the article,

Researchers who studied more than two million people over 40 years found a rise in deaths from heart attacks, strokes, falls and suicides.

There was a 34.9 per cent rise in suicides, 28.5 per cent rise in accidental deaths not related to cars, and a 44 per cent rise in deaths from falls on birthdays.

However the article also adds, rather disingenously,

…[R]isk of birthday death rose as people got older.

Well no shit Sherlock! That couldn’t be anything to do with old age, could it? Even so, it is nice to see science actually backing up astrology for a change.

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