Have Some Millennials Replaced Organised Religion With Tarot, Astrology And Crystals?
In these uncertain times I have noticed a marked increase in younger visitors seeking guidance and direction. It certainly makes me feel old when the next generation begin to turn to the old ways for answers, yet definitely feels like a privilege to be able to one those doors.
Aside from the the general historical page of tarot as ‘fortune telling’ there is the increasingly recognised use of Tarot, & particularly the archetypes within as a solid method for self discovery & development. According to recent research and studies, more and more people are interested in spirituality but possibly less in organised religion. This is particularly true among millennials who want to take control of their own destiny.
Spirituality, astrology, and witchcraft are all gaining popularity among millennials. According to one research, more than half of young individuals in the United States believe astrology is a science. In the four years between 2011 and 2016, the psychic services sector, which includes things like tarot card reading, palm reading, mediums, and astrology, grew by 2% to a $2 billion industry.
Melissa Jayne, the owner of Catland, a Brooklyn-based “metaphysical boutique,” claimed there has been a significant increase in interest in the occult in the last five years, particularly among New Yorkers in their 20s. Workshops such as “Witchcraft 101,” “Astrology 101,” and a “Spirit Seance” are available at the store.
“Whether it’s spell-casting, tarot, astrology, meditation & trance, or it’s herbalism,” she explained, ” all these traditions provide real tools for individuals to create a positive change in their lives.” “This can be very appealing to a generation that grew up in a world of enormous industry, environmental catastrophe, large and authoritarian governments, and toxic social institutions, all of which appear too big to alter.”
However, unlike the existence of God, there is no scientific proof. Numerous academic studies have disproved astrology, but Banu Guler, co-founder of Co-Star, an artificial intelligence-powered astrology app, believes the lack of structure in the industry is exactly what motivates young, educated professionals to invest their time and money in it.
“It’s quite different from how we all actually live, work, & date,” she added, “where everything is hyper-mediated.” “There’s a belief void: we move from work to a bar to dinner and a date with no sense of purpose.” Astrology is a way out, a method to place yourself in the perspective of thousands of years of human history and the universe.”
Starry-eyed on Social Media
According to astrologer Chani Nicholas, social media has aided in the direction-finding of many young people. Nicholas is based in Los Angeles and has slightly over a quarter million Instagram followers. The majority of her social media followers are millennials, ranging in age from 25 to 34.
People who held non-mainstream opinions – religious, political, or otherwise — lacked a public way to connect with one another before the internet. Divinatory practices like astrology, crystals, and tarot have been able to take up place in a public debate, she claims, thanks to social media. It doesn’t hurt that they all look fantastic on Instagram. Psychic readings by phone are the perfect way for this digital savvy generation to reveal possible alternative futures with the help of a recommended psychic.
Young people have grown up in the midst of a major recession, climate change, and a broader awareness of a political and economic system that many believe has failed them, so it’s not surprising that they’re pushing back against those systems while also exploring nontraditional religious beliefs and finding ways to integrate it all, according to Nicholas.
The astrology-and-crystals craze is one of those phenomena that appears out of nowhere and continues to grow exponentially. Instagram is dominated by raw crystal and astrology-inspired jewelry and decor. Attendees at a fashion event in Los Angeles for Mother Denim’s new capsule collection, Mystical, were given a velvet pouch filled with crystals, along with notes explaining their meaning.
Dennis Rodman, a retired Los Angeles Laker, was charged in May by a Newport Beach yoga school with assisting in the theft of a 400-pound amethyst crystal. “Healing Crystals and How to Shoplift Them,” a satirical storey in The New Yorker, was published.
Looking to the stars has also made its way into the digital sector, with Facebook announcing its new cryptocurrency, Libra, lately.
The astrology iOS application Co-Star, which recently raised above $5.2 million in a seed round to launch an Android app version, sends users push notifications with fun, social-media-friendly daily horoscopes ranging from the mundane (“It’ll be fine.” “Drink water.”) to the slightly insane (“Be someone’s service animal today.”). “I’m going to start a cult.”).
In comparison to earlier generations, younger millennials are less inclined to seek spiritual fulfilment through organized religion. In 2019, Christel J. Manning, a religion sociologist with over 15 years of experience, wrote that Gen Z is the least religious generation. A third of those polled by Pew Research claimed they had no religious affiliation.
The reasons for this range from cultural transitions to generational differences in upbringing (Gen Z is considered the most ethnically, racially and religiously diverse generation in the U.S.). Professionals like Manning don’t see the shrinking numbers as a negative; in fact, one of the benefits she mentioned in her 2019 piece is that Gen Z is more tolerant than prior generations, which may be attributed in part to their falling religious affiliations.