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Astrological? 

Dear Minerva,

I have a friend who constantly dogs on my religion. I am a person of faith but I also question some teachings and have remained open to other people's ideas. This friend makes it a point to declare my beliefs as incorrect while simultaneously talking about their own hardcore belief in astrology. I don't put my friend down or try to criticize their beliefs. What can I do?

Sincerely,

—SagiWARYus

Dear SagiWARYus,

Belief versus non-belief is a war as old as time. This is one example of why religion has traditionally been off limits for polite conversation. The problem here is that there is no way to have a successful argument about it. No one comes out triumphant because our beliefs, on either side, are ours to have. Your friend sounds pretty judgmental. There are many sources that refute astrology and horoscopes. Many religions also forbid them. My advice to you is to tell your friend that topics of faith are off limits because you value their friendship and, since your friend can't respect your faith, your friendship's survival depends on making it an "Area 51" topic. My own belief is that we all have to get through this life the best way we can. Sometimes, believing in something is all we have to cling on to. It doesn't matter to me if that belief is God, Allah, astrology, etc. If it is helping (not hurting) people on their journeys, we should respect that path. Why fight over semantics?

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