Astrology as a guiding force is one of the emerging trends this year. It’s also a hotly controversial subject. Is it an art? Is it a science? Is it religion? Is it nonsense?
And why is it trending?
Well, it makes a little sense. The political landscape is a mess, instability the norm, with aggression, intolerance and suspicion running rife. It’s no wonder that people turn to something a little more ephemeral for succour if they don’t feel secure or supported. Throughout the media, there is a major emphasis on self-care as people look for ways to preserve their sanity and mind themselves and each other during unstable times. Traditionally, religion has been the balm people have needed - these days it seems to be astrology as people search for some sense of calm, for some sense of knowing.
Obviously there are complete and utter non-believers, but then there are the curious cats. And then there are the die-hards – the ones who run their calendars by the daily posts from The Astro-Twins, and won’t get out of bed until they know what’s coming next…
For the non-believers, the astrology atheists, the whole thing is fantastical nonsense. For them, there is no sense to be garnered from star alignment. Before writing this, I conducted a poll on my Instagram to see how people felt about it and the response was swift and strong, in both directions. One response stated, “Complete and utter rubbish, if the stars dictated our future then free will would not exist. If our character was dictated by the time at which we were born, then how do you explain identical twins being different characters.”?
Indeed. How is it explained?
Apparently, the Babylonians first initiated astrology; their charts enabled them to predict the occurrence of weather, and other celestial events. After that, the Greeks jumped on board and Plato, Aristotle and Co. endorsed it as a science, which then spread to the Arabs and the rest of the world. The Zodiac is based on twelve lunar cycles, and from them horoscopes are built with charts that show the Sun, Moon, planets and stars at a particular time of day.
All this talk of charts and stars does sound charmingly ancient, so what relevance does it have for us now, in 2018?
I think Astrology has a placating placebo effect for people, one that offers a little insight, minimal consequences and a degree of diversion from the daily grind. When well written and produced with some intuition and sensitivity mirroring the general mood they can deliver personal insights. And shouldn’t it stay just as that? Personal.
Take me for example. Initially, Astrology was nothing more than a scan over daily ‘sun signs’ in newspapers or even monthly readings in magazines. But now, I have graduated somewhat and have my doubts about those unless they are affiliated to a known astrologer (otherwise, I know it’s all just ‘content’ and probably written by an intern right out of college).
The game changed for me when I came across Susan Miller, an American astrologer who runs a site called Astrology Zone; she has an app with a daily reading for each sign that has been spookily accurate about details of my life for the past few years. And I mean spookily accurate! She has posted about things that have happened exactly, in a way that has oftentimes unnerved me, as my rational mind questions how similar things can be happening to all the other Gemini’s across the globe at the same time. My nature is to be a bit more suspicious, or to, at the very least, hang back and reserve judgement until I know more. But honestly, with the Susan Miller readings, I can attest my conversion to curious cat (not diehard just yet). How she deciphers the stars and turns them into forecasts seems to work for me, and I’m down with that. Often as a game, I show someone else their reading for that day to see if any elements resonate with them, and frequently they do.
But that’s me. And that’s the point.
Astrology is just another ephemeral thing that some people connect with, and many don’t. Yes, it’s similar to religion in that stimulating, polarising sense (thankfully people aren’t starting wars about it yet, apart from in my Instagram feed), but I think the real issue with astrology, or star signs, or any of that personal belief stuff is that the key to us all being ok with it as a predicted wellness trend for 2018, is just that – us being ok with it. Because, if I want to believe in astrology and you want to believe in unicorns – so be it!
Tolerance, people! Let’s take that, instead, as our main wellness trend for 2018, and allow people feel what they feel. Let them process it as they wish, talk about it if it suits them and rock the Hell onwards.
God knows the world is bonkers enough right now and we need to stop sitting in judgement, knuckle down and get fixing it; some star searching and a bit more focus on our self-care and self-awareness is not harming anyone. It might even be adding to our personal evolution.
Each to their own; believe in the thing that helps you get through (apart from Flat Earthers because that’s just silly).