The first need is simply to find a way to be spiritual. People are always saying we live in a more secular age, but secularism never really comes. Humans are transcendent creatures who have spiritual experiences and instinctively appeal to supernatural powers. Even in the most secular parts of society, there is great and unfulfilled spiritual yearning.

Second, there is a widespread need to slow down, to escape the pace of life technology wants and to live at a human pace.

Third, there is a widespread need to express alienation. Interest in the occult rises during periods of transition and disillusion. It happened in the late 1960s, and it’s happening today. For many, the traditional organized religions are implicated in the existing power structures. Being occult is a way to announce that you stand on the fringe of society, that you stand against the patriarchy, against the heteronormative culture and against the structures of oppression. Political alienation manifests itself in the alt-right and the energized radical left. It makes sense that it would manifest itself in the spiritual realm, too.

Fourth is the need for identity markers.