Over the past few years, I’ve noticed a trend on social media: many friends and acquaintances I follow post frequently about astrology. I neither follow nor believe in astrology, nor do I have any deep thoughts about this phenomenon, but I am just a little confused why it has, to me, seemingly ballooned in popularity. Have you noticed it, too?
From what I gather, not all of these people literally believe in the power of astrology (although some do), but rather it’s something that seeks to explain other people’s behavior. For example, here’s an altered version of a post I saw: “my ex was a Taurus, which makes total sense based on how he acted.”
An interesting article at The Atlantic had some hard stats about the popularity of astrology, which backed up what I had noticed. The explanation is interesting:
In a stressful, data-driven era, many young people find comfort and insight in the zodiac—even if they don’t exactly believe in it. […]
It might be that Millennials are more comfortable living in the borderlands between skepticism and belief because they’ve spent so much of their lives online, in another space that is real and unreal at the same time. That so many people find astrology meaningful is a reminder that something doesn’t have to be real to feel true. Don’t we find truth in fiction?
I’m still a bit confused by the whole issue, but I’m fascinated by its occurrence. I’m not going to start reading my horoscope, but I have a better sense of why my friends do. Check out the Atlantic article for more; it’s a (mostly) good piece.