Throw out all those preconceived notions you have about what astrology is wacky, psychic, delusional, fantasy. If you hold any of these conceptions, you clearly haven’t met or readSusan Miller, Astrology Zone’s world renowned astrologist, who also happens to be one of the kindest and most energetic people I have ever encountered. Speaking with Susan, it’s clear that she’s super smart and not just when it comes to astrology. Susan is smart about life, and has a keen intuition for people, which is perhaps why each month, millions flock to Astrology Zone to read Susan’s predictions on what’s to come for each zodiac sign. In fact, the site’s seen so many visitors on several occasions 10 million page views per hour at one point to be exact that the sheer traffic has caused her site to crash.
But what makes Susan so special out of all of the other astrologists out there? Well, besides the fact that she’s been telling my life story in her predictions over the last year (I kid you not), us StyleCasters are especially partial because she’s down with the fashion crowd. Not only is she mother to Chrissie Miller, the designer and founder of downtown cool clothing brand Sophomore, but she works with magazines like Elle and Vogue Japan, regularly collaborates with fashion and beauty brands on events, and loves designer clothes just as much as the fashionistas she works alongside. You could say Susan has a cult following in the fashion industry and this is one cult of which we’re happy to be a part. We got a chance to chat with Susan about how astrology works and much, much more.
How did you get into astrology?
I was paralyzed during an operation I was bleeding to death. And I was either going to lose my leg or my life or both… I was 14 years old and I had to spend 11 months in the hospital fighting for my life [and then two plus years doing 6 hours of physical therapy a day], and I had to give up high school. [Ed note: Miller later graduated from NYU with honors and worked as an agent for commercial photographers before eventually committing full time to astrology].
I learned [astrology] through my mother. I had a motivation that few people would have. I had a metal brace on my leg. I had two crutches. I was 14 and I wanted to go to prom; I wanted to wear high heels. And my mom wouldnt teach me… Shesaid, ‘the only way that I’m going to teach you astrology is if I am in the room whenever you say anything, and Im going to teach you for 12 years.’ She said ‘a) you have to learn astrology, and that takes time because you cant look at one aspect. You have to look at the sky; b) were also going to study communication, because if you say something thats wrong, thats just bad, but if you say something right the wrong way thats just as bad because theyll misunderstand you, and c) were going to study philosophy and religion, and were just going to talk’…And I kept my promise. I never told anyone until she told me I was ready.
For those of us who don’t understand astrology, can you explain it in simple terms?
There’s more to astrology than you would think. It’s very mathematical and based on geometry based on the planets and their attitudes towards each other depending on the angles between them. If a planet is roaming around by itself, not much is going to happen (just like in life). Imagine thatyou have four friends and youre all at a square table and youre trying to work on a project and no one’s agreeing when you have planets at a square (90 degree angles) then you have an obstacle or a problem, or maybe everyone’s agreeing but the printer cant get it ready on time.
Can anyone study astrology?
Astrology is not a gift. The only gift is that maybe God gives you a good head for math.The gift is in the interpretation and communication of it.It’s all about the subtleties; I am weighing what you are going to feel and I have to explain it to you.
Youre really popular among the fashion crowd.
Yes, I found that out by accident! I found that out on Twitter. I tweet every day, so I was noticing who was signing up for me. You know what it is, astrology appeals to people who are creative. Not just about design, but creative about their life. Their mind is open and conceptual and theyre open to ideas. So I think thats why it could be. I have a lot of people in media too, but media people are interested in ideas and concepts. Its a certain personality make-up that is open to building a richer life.
How does fashion or personal style come into play depending on what sign you are?
Well, in terms of being in the fashion business, Libra is probably the best they are the true arbiters of taste. If you want to know if there’s a boutique you should go to, they’re an air sign, they talk to people a lot, theyre also ruled by the scales so theyre in perfect proportion, so theyre weighing how good things are. A lot of editors and designers are Libras. Theyre amazing in terms of knowing what’s going on. Leo likes the dramatic statement and theatricality of fashion, which is so about the greatest designers in France. The Geminis like to write about it. The Virgo likes the details the beautiful lining, the perfect fit. Couture is Virgo. Taurus loves texture they want to feel it first. They have such an acute sense of smell, of taste. You can go with them to a restaurant and they know what’s in the ingredients. And the Cancers are actually good with money and thats something a lot of people dont know. The Rockafellers were Cancers. You see a lot of Cancers and Capricorns in that area of fashion.Pisces is very good in a creative sense. They dont know where their ideas are coming from it’s in the subconscious.They dont want to follow the trends that other people are following.
What about the other signs?
A lot of editors-in-chief are Scorpio. If you dont have some Virgo, though, it’s going to be tough to be an editor-in-chief.Robbie Myers [Elle's editor-in-chief] is a Scorpio they combine the sensuous with solid business smarts. They know what people want because theyre a water sign. Pisces knows what the public wants before the public knows it. You find them all over news departments. Aquarius is ahead of the curve, but they want to be on the Internet or in terms of a job want to be involved with the Internet, or creating phone apps, or whatever hasnt been developed yet. They push technology forward. They are great communicators; their trouble is that theyre so far ahead that some people dont get it and they have to spend a lot of time explaining.
Anna Wintour is a Scorpio!
Well, Anna Wintour really came up with that idea to help the recession for Fashion’s Night Out and everyone is so glad she did. I cant believe how big it got. Scorpios have a creative side but they also have a business side. It’s hard to find in one person.
Your daughter Chrissie is in the fashion industry, with her own line called Sophomore. When Chrissie was little, did you see in her chart that her career would be in fashion?
I knew she would be creative and also very strong. And she has Libra rising and Libra is the arbiter of taste. I always said they have really wonderful taste. I always wanted to bring my kids up in Manhattan.
When you say “rising sign,” what exactly does that mean?
The rising sign is the sign that you assumed to cope with life. It was almost as if for you, you were meant to be that sign it also dictates your profession.
The sun sign is your birthday sign, but your rising sign can only be calculated by the time of birth, so theres no way you can find it out without your chart, but it stays the same throughout your whole life so you only have to do it once. Your rising sign explains why all Libras arent the same, why all Pisces arent the same, etc. you have that other element that adds to your character. The rising sign is the face you show the world.
What is the biggest misconception about astrology?
Well, one in particular: that it’s predestination. It has nothing to do with that. It has to do with the movements of the planets and the geometrical angles that they make towards each other. Even the tough aspects make you stronger, so you can turn it to your advantage. There’s always an advantage in every situation, but you have to find it.you always have the final choice.
Of course there are those out there who don’t believe. What do you say to them?
I want to say this first no astrologer starts out believing in astrology. It’s usually someone in our circle who got us interested; we usually dont go to astrology ourselves. So first of all, to people who dont believe, I say ‘I’m with you, I didnt believe either. But there are many things in our universe that we dont know about.’ I just ask them to have an open mind for six months and read my summaries.
One piece of advice you’d give people that you’ve learned through astrology:
Your chart will never be repeated in time or space. Never. Never ever will your chart ever be replicated. So that means that you need to contribute what you want to contribute. Because you have talents that no one else has.
Main illustration by Jayne Leung. Photo courtesy of Susan Miller
Susan Miller‘s monthly horoscopes are posted every 1st of the month on AstrologyZone.com. All of Susan’s books including My Personal Horoscope, which for $50 gives you a detailed blueprint of your specific chart, are available for purchase on the site.