ASKING THE STARS FOR HELP
I've met people with great faith in tarot card readings. It's certainly a bizarre feeling at first, trying to stay non-judgmental while talking to a person who is reviewing their eccentricities with you, almost proud of their off-centered mannerisms. It almost makes one jealous, this frantic way of believing in something-- but also a little sad about their state of mind. However, I was somewhat of a convert when I started spending a lot of time with a friend, whose friendship with me accelerated into best-friend-hood-- especially when we started discussing our rare beliefs in "the divine" together on an almost regular basis.
Discussing astrology-- meaning, the twelve typical zodiac symbols everyone knows-- "yesss, you are such a cancer"-- is addictive. When it comes to love troubles and fuckboys who never respond, or just some sort of unresponsive "vibe" surrounding your life-- a thorough and serious review of one's horoscope and "life path" is such a relief, turned into near ecstasy. "We were never a good match anyway," I've said completely seriously about my star sign compatibility with someone.
"Ugh, a Gemini." I was once at a party in someone's backyard, and this boy, Davíd, an otherwise serious philosopher type, suddenly turned into some sort of astrology whiz who started spattering out out murmurs of "rising signs" and... "setting signs"? And all of those little details reserved for the truly well-studied. "Once," he revealed with a smile hinting at a joke (but an attitude that I knew was completely serious) "my friend's gemini roommate took out all of my bro's pet fish from his tank when he moved out, after a fight, and flushed them down the toilet for revenge." I was shocked-- at the story in general, but also at the accusation that his star sign was to blame. I also felt a severe sense of stability around my identity, kind of enjoying being called a psycho, as if it excused all of my reckless decisions. Suddenly, I became proud, and blurted, "well, makes sense," excuse me? The real me was pleading to this unrecognizable self. I started to tell myself I was a woman of science when the conversation shifted focus towards something less interesting, kind of locked in the haze of not fully listening to this unshowered astrology pupil.
“Astrology is like wine-tasting,” my friend once told me, “listen: it is like the probability of something happening that can be explained by the stars… it can be a tool for understanding patterns, and yourself. But it’s not always true.”
This brief but powerful fascination lead me to the Birthday Book, introduced to me by a friend who presented it by saying she, and many people that she knew, kept this “thick blue book” in their childhood homes. I went right to my page, as people do when they’re taking personality quizzes or otherwise given the opportunity for self-explanation. “It’s so true!” I blurted, feeling more connected to the ‘other realm’ than I did probably when looking through a telescope. Of course, the second thing I looked up on their website, once I returned home, was the ‘compatibility predictor’. Perhaps it is too youthful and unwise, but the instinct many of us hopeless weirdos have right away, at least at this age, is to go right to when the factual yet divine moments will be when love shall come our way. This isn’t how it works, and it feels vaguely disrespectful to people’s personal human pasts, but it always seems to get to me. It was as if the careful readings of an authoritative tarot card reader simply manifested all the patterns and signs I’d seen in all of my dreams, since the very first dream that I had. It was like a peek into my safe place, the private world everyone has, but a welcome method for returning there.
Love is not all that cosmic, but I think the point is that it is enjoyable to feel like it is. The same rush from the concept of mysticism, or ghosts, is the kind of rush we could only wish to duplicate through a real connection with someone. Fortunately, this is possible. It happens almost every time one is tucked away in a friendly discourse, if only you believe that it does. Through listening, you can learn something new or bizarre about a person that uncovers a place you’ve never traveled to before. This kind of hopeful mindset can get a person through even the most traumatizing breakups, or difficult lonely stretches.
Article by Boat Milan-Lynch.