Astrology is a meme, and it’s growing in that blooming, unfurling way that memes do. On social media marketing, astrologers and astrology meme machines amass tens or hundreds of thousands of followers, people joke about Mercury retrograde, and categorize “the signs as …” literally anything: cat breeds, Oscar Wilde quotes, Stranger Things characters, kinds of french fries. In online publications, daily, weekly, and monthly horoscopes, and zodiac-themed listicles flourish.
This isn’t the first moment astrology’s had and it also won’t function as the last. The practice has been around in various forms for hundreds of years. More recently, the New Age movement of the 1960s and ’70s came with a heaping helping in the zodiac. (Some also reference the New Age because the “Age of Aquarius”-the 2,000-year period after the Earth is said to maneuver in to the Aquarius sign.)
Within the decades involving the New Age boom now, while โหราศาสตร์ยูเรเนียน certainly didn’t disappear-you can still regularly find horoscopes in the back pages of magazines-it “went returning to being a little bit more inside the background,” says Chani Nicholas, an astrologer situated in Los Angeles. “Then there’s something that’s happened within the last five-years that’s given it an edginess, a relevance for this time and place, which it hasn’t had for any good 35 years. Millennials have taken it and run with it.”
Lots of people I spoke to with this piece said that they had a sense that the stigma connected to astrology, even though it still exists, had receded since the practice has grabbed a foothold in online culture, specifically for young people.
“Over earlier times a couple of years, we’ve really seen a reframing of brand new Age practices, greatly geared toward a Millennial and young Gen X quotient,” says Lucie Greene, the worldwide director of J. Walter Thompson’s innovation group, which tracks and predicts cultural trends.
Callie Beusman, a senior editor at Broadly, says traffic for the site’s horoscopes “has grown really exponentially.” Stella Bugbee, the president and editor-in-chief in the Cut, says an average horoscope post on the site got 150 percent more visitors in 2017 compared to the year before.
In certain ways, astrology is perfectly suited for the web age. There’s a minimal barrier to entry, and nearly endless depths to plumb if you believe like falling down a Google research hole. The availability of more in-depth information online has given this cultural wave of astrology a particular erudition-more jokes about Saturn returns, fewer “Hey baby, what’s your sign?” pickup lines.
A simple primer: Astrology is not a science; there’s no evidence that one’s zodiac sign actually correlates to personality. But the system has its own sort of logic. Astrology ascribes meaning towards the placement in the sun, the moon, ymvgiy the planets within 12 parts of the sky-indications of the zodiac. You likely know your sun sign, the most famous zodiac sign, even though you’re not an astrology buff. It’s based on where sun was on your own birthday. Nevertheless the placement from the moon and all the other planets at that time and site of your own birth adds additional shades to the picture of you painted by your “birth chart.”
“The kids today as well as their memes are just like an ideal context for astrology.”
What horoscopes are supposed to do is offer you details about what the planets are performing at this time, and later on, and how all that affects each sign. “Think of the planets as a cocktail party,” explains Susan Miller, the most popular astrologer who founded the Astrology Zone website. “You might have three people talking together, two might be over inside the corner arguing, Venus and Mars may be kissing the other person. I need to make feeling of those conversations which can be happening every month for you.”