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Is astrology really dead?

Decline of astrologyMy longstanding hypothesis is that astrology has one foot in the grave, at least outside the Subcontinent.  Although newspapers and websites still carry sun sign columns, I think that few people are actually interested in astrology.  If you go to a bookshop, you’ll find few books on the subject.  If you go to Amazon, it’s a fringe interest, where the better selling books will have been published years if not decades ago.  Another sign is advertising.  Over the last few months, NO listings for astrologers have been shown in Seattle Craigslist.  This may be because Craigslist have started charging, and the chancers have been squeezed out, but it could also be that the last astrologer has given up looking for new clients.

Overall, people are more skeptical – they don’t believe in anything except their smart phones.  There is also an overload of information, and astrology is just one of many inputs.  You can take it or leave it.

If you are unfortunate enough to be an astrologer, this creates a few problems.  From a financial perspective, it’s probably best to cut your losses.  It’s a dying profession, and it’s time to move on.  The above graph, from Google Trends, shows the decline in searches for the word “astrologer” since 2004.  It’s bad.

I don’t know how well this translates into actual figures.  From my own experience, I have got very little business from this website, even during the times when I was getting over 1000 hits a day.  To get these hits, I would have to put up daily and weekly sun sign horoscopes.  People visited, checked their sign, and moved on.

Of course things change.  Astrology peaked in the early 1930s, at least in England, and then went into decline until the 1960s.  There was another peak in early to mid 1980s, before the big collapse started.  Maybe in 20 years time astrology will be hip and hot.

Logically I should now be closing this website down.  The clients I have know where to find me, and they couldn’t care less what I am posting or not posting.  On the other hand, as my clients recognize, there is value to astrology, and it shouldn’t be dead.  It’s a powerful symbolic language that can make sense of a complicated world.  Whether it’s understanding politicians, predicting turning points in the Bitcoin price, or providing a measure of self-understanding, it is definitely a useful tool.  And after over ten years of running archiedunlop.com, it’s probably too late for me to pull the plug.

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