Astrology today isn’t the hippie-dippie stuff of the 60s. We wear our zodiac symbols on jewelry, read our horoscope apps over breakfast, and justify the crappy things in life by saying “Ugh, Mercury’s in retrograde!” as if we really understand what that means. The stigma has been all but erased; astrology is even the cool-girl trend now. But what’s with the recent craze?
We may have to thank our smartphones for this one. If you ask me, the rise of the digital age and the rise of astrology are definitely related. The internet has posed itself to be the perfect outlet for millennials, Gen Z-ers, and the rest of us technology-dependent individuals.
Our horoscopes come on apps, they’re constantly present on social media, and even the slightest curiosity about your sign can be solved with a quick Google search. Type in “zodiac” on any social platform, and I can promise you a string of relatable posts and comments. Also keep in mind that astrological symbols, birth charts, and planet arrangements are all very transferable to the online landscape via fun collages and visual analogies.
According to a 2014 survey by the American Psychological Association, millennials are the most stressed generation. Perhaps we can attribute this, once again, to the digital age. Constant access to news, the demands of work, and incessant reminders of climate change and political turmoil are just a few reasons why it’s easy to understand why astrology has come to mean more to the masses.
Not everyone believes in astrology as a science (or even uses it as a serious guide), but easy access to a soothing tool of explanation has transformed it into a coping mechanism in our stressful lives.
Ultimately, we all just want to hear that what we’re doing is okay, that there’s a reason for all the chaos, and that we, as people, are unique, important, and empowered. Astrology offers a comforting explanation of the world around us, giving reason to who we are and how we interact with the world.
Perhaps no one will admit it, but horoscopes are really just a tool of self-reflection—a sort of daily devotional to evaluate ourselves and put our lives and the circumstances around us into context. A new form of spirituality, if you will.
And so easily accessible. So new-age, so mainstream, and so very millennial.