For School of Communication senior Darien Wendell, interest astrology was something that had to develop over time. “I was definitely one of those folks that was like ‘this is dumb.'” they said. “Really, you think the stars are trying to tell you how to live your life?” But eventually, not only did it grow on them, but it became an integral part of their healing practices. And as far as stars telling us how to live our lives, Wendell’s current deduction is “nothing [that] I do, I think, ‘this is going to give me the answers that I’m going to follow the next five days according to this one paragraph.'” Rather, Wendell believes that “it’s some other way to get insight into your life, into your being, to have a conversation with someone outside of yourself about what you need and what might be effective and process that and keep it moving.”(LISTEN.) And even if not everyone has found it to be so transformative as Wendell has, at the very least Woodson says that “It’s fun and interesting because I find so many things I relate to and ascribe to simply because of my sign.” Speaking of signs, there are few alliances that exist stronger than when people find others of the same astrological sign. For those that identify significantly with their sign, there is room for an increased knowledge of self. Ashleigh Johnson, a popular business astrologer and blogger, finds importance in being an Aquarius, “the zodiac sign that rules astrology.” “It comes out in the way I can look at a chart and see the big picture,” she said. “It’s in the fact that I like my client interactions to feel like a meeting between friends.” Significance of his sign is what led Fearrington to learn more about astrology. “I’m a Leo…everything that you read about Leos in any astrology book, I was that,” he said. ”
“It’s some other way to get insight into your life, into your being, to have a conversation with someone outside of yourself about what you need and what might be effective and process that and keep it moving.”Vinson attributes his Gemini identity to being “a strong part of my identity…knowing who I am. It really helps in giving me clarity and also, not self-righteousness, but [ability to] believe in myself.” For Wendell, knowing the intricacies of their sign has taught them that though they are “stubborn as hell,” they are also “a very caring and empathetic person. As a Taurus, I’ve always felt really solid and grounded. I have understood it.” (LISTEN) Woodson is a Sagittarius, and says that knowing this helps with “overlapping people in my life who I know are the same sign to compare their similarities and differences.” These difference explain, for Woodson, why “every single one of my best friends has been a Virgo. My mother is a Virgo! And they are the only people that can consistently make me laugh; like belly, ugly, crying laugh!”
On popular astrology sites such as Tarot.com or Ask-Oracle.com, there is usually one thing in particular that all of the featured astrologists have in common. They’re white. Are Black folks just not that into the trade of astrology? Or is it like other fields such as tech and we aren’t represented as well as we could be? According to Vinson, the former isn’t so far-fetched as it may seem. “We’re out here [dealing with] structural racism, oppression, the fact that our brothers and sisters are out here getting murdered in the streets,” he said. “I can see the argument that we don’t have time for astrology.” The issue of representation is an issue that has personally plagued Johnson’s personal experiences. “In the astrological community, there aren’t a lot of Black folks,” Johnson said. “I’m laying down as much of a foundation as I can so the next Black woman astrologer can have something to go on. I’m here to show that it can be done.” As with many things, the issue isn’t simply a binary. Speaking on his participation at the United Astrology Conference, the biggest astrology stage there is, Fearrington says that and “the attendance there is…they are not well attended by black people. And that is a financial issue.” And as far as Black people not being down with astrology goes, Fearrington offers a simple explanation: “Astrology has a bad press agent. When you ask most people what astrology is, they don’t know,” he said. “Most people in general don’t really have an idea of what astrology is and what it can do…that covers all people, but especially with black people.” (LISTEN) Wendell would agree. “I really hate when people approach [astrology] like…not at a level of understanding,” they said. “That’s just an egregious misuse of something that is helpful and transformative for a lot of folks.” So, what’s it with astrology? Only the stars will tell.
Looking to be influenced by astrology in new ways? Chani Nicholas, Mecca Woods, Janelle Belgrave, and also the professional astrologers mentioned above are more than qualified for any astrological inquiries.