Getting to know New Age Spirituality


Aliyah Rodriguez, Features & Lifestyle Editor

It’s no secret that Iona College is a religious institution founded by the Christian Brothers, but those of the Christian faith aren’t the only ones ocampus. The recent boom in alternative forms of spirituality has resulted in people exploring their faiths and finding a combination of different ideals to subscribe to. 

New Age Spirituality is a series of practices and beliefs that became popular in the Western world in the late 70s and has seen a recent uptick in the past decade. Those who subscribe to these beliefs make the point that they are spiritual, not religious, and focus primarily on more holistic practices.  

With the Christian faith being the most widely accepted set of religions in this country, it may be daunting for many to accept and embrace forms of New Age Spirituality.  

New Age theology doesn’t consist of anything that’s unheard of: it’s deeply rooted in divinity, whether that be in the belief of a singular higher power or multiple guiding powers such gods and goddesses, nature spirits, ancestors and angels. Most people that practice these forms of spirituality also believe in a divine self and acknowledging every part of yourself – past, present, and future – as a whole rather than as individual, underdeveloped pieces adding up to something else. 

Have you ever been stumped when you hear others talking about their sun, moon and rising signs? What about when people complain about Mercury being in retrograde?  In the past few years, apps like Co-star, Astro Future and The Pattern have become more popular, as well as social media accounts with professional astrologers providing daily, weekly and monthly readings to their following base.  

These apps and social media accounts have become gateways for people to better understand New Age Spirituality. It haeven become less taboo for people to talk about their use of tarot cards, oracle decks, crystals and other spiritual cleansers like white sage and palo santo.  

Senior Brianna Fornasari, a psychology major, has been interested in spirituality for many years despite being raised Catholic.  

“Honestly, I feel like growing up surrounding by a combination of Catholicism and hypocrisy in the world really just pushed me in away from religion as a whole,” Fornasari said. “I’m not sure when I got into astrology because I was really young, but I knew that I was obsessed with the moon, the stars and the sky and I’ve always felt very in tune with them –  the more I did research, the more I loved it even though it isn’t considered scientific, it made more sense to me than a lot of the things I was being taught in school.” 

Whether you’re Christian, a person who subscribes to another monotheistic religion or someone who practices alternative spirituality, embracing and understanding other faiths will allow for a more well-rounded existence.  

When considering how her spirituality has impacted her life, Fornasari believes that the best part of her journey comes from getting to know every part of herself better.  

“I learned more recently how to use spirituality to get to know me, something I lacked for so long,” Fornasari concluded. “Now I’m grateful that so many people are tapping into it, because I realized that this is what helped me find myself.”