Within the weeks main as much as Turkey’s tightest elections in 20 years, a few of the 64 million eligible voters didn’t look to opinion polls for predictions in regards to the consequence.
They turned to astrologers.
Just a few weeks in the past, Dincer Guner, a famend astrologer, fastidiously examined the beginning chart of the Turkish republic (based Oct. 29, 1923) and people of the presidential candidates. The end result, he introduced in a YouTube video, was clear: Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the main opposition candidate, would win the presidential vote, ending President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s 20 years in energy.
Mr. Kilicdaroglu’s supporters rejoiced. However Mr. Guner is only one amongst a universe of movie star astrologers giving forecasts in Turkey. They get pleasure from massive followings on social media, providing hopes of readability amid the uncertainty of nail-biting election polls, a crippling price of residing disaster and the aftermath of the devastating earthquakes in February that killed greater than 50,000 individuals in Turkey and upended thousands and thousands of lives.
One other distinguished astrologer, Meral Guven, recognized for precisely forecasting the nationwide soccer championship, predicted an election win for Mr. Erdogan, saying he would rule Turkey “till the day he dies and even after that.”
The election predictions are a part of a spiritualism that’s frequent in Turkish society, the place individuals learn the long run in espresso grounds, seek the advice of fortune tellers earlier than main life selections or go to the purported tombs of historic mystics to make needs.
Even prime politicians search celestial steering: Mr. Kilicdaroglu wears a martenitsa, or “want ribbon,” on his proper wrist, to be untied when his want comes true. When a supporter requested him final month what the want was, he replied, “This can be a secret all people is aware of.”
Astrology serves as a balm in a rustic the place a robust authorities has eroded many individuals’s sense of management, in keeping with Feyza Akinerdem, a lecturer in sociology at Bogazici College in Istanbul.
“People are disempowered by the grip of the state in Turkey,” Mrs. Akinerdem mentioned. “Reliance on astrology is one technique to endure the dearth of energy over one’s personal life, significantly in tumultuous instances.”
Mr. Guner, whose Twitter account has greater than 700,000 followers, factors to 2018, when Turkey’s foreign money started to lose worth, as the beginning of a brand new surge of curiosity in astrology as individuals sought monetary counsel. “Folks have been more and more asking me about the place they need to make investments their financial savings, whether or not the trade fee will go even additional,” Mr. Guner mentioned in an interview.
“I chorus from exact solutions as a result of monetary astrology just isn’t my discipline of experience,” he added.
Mr. Guner should select his phrases fastidiously, particularly round politics, provided that insulting the president is a felony offense in Turkey and free media is basically muzzled. Though he predicted a defeat for Mr. Erdogan, Mr. Guner has warned the political opposition in opposition to repeating the errors of Turkey’s short-lived coalition governments of the Nineties, an period characterised by political bickering and financial troubles, since his readings recommend the same sample for the nation over the following two years.
Whereas the political season has stored him busy, the astrologer mentioned he appeared ahead to different urgent questions as soon as the elections are over.
“I miss individuals asking me about their love lives,” he mentioned.