If you were expecting some kind of sun sign nonsense, forget it. This is real astrology. See the section above. Please note: this forecast is expressed in terms of Universal Time (UT).
The October sky brings another SuperMoon, a foreboding Mars-Saturn configuration, and four planetary stations (including three of special significance for financial markets and the world economy); plus the regular monthly cycle of lunar extremes to trigger additional geophysical stress and stir things up down here below. Look for a major Iraq war scare - including what may turn out to be the biggest air strike against that country since the Persian Gulf War. Around the same time (within a few days either way of the 6th), major equity markets around the world are vulnerable to downdrafts that could take them to their lows of the year. Once the panic subsides, major stock indices are likely headed toward a break-even point around year's end. (For example, recovering 10,000 on the Dow.) Ups and downs in the economy and the markets, smart bombs and stupid fanatics spilling blood and disturbing the peace, and some big storms thrown in for good measure . . .
October opens with an upsurge in storm and seismic activity on the 1st, a leftover from the September 30 lunar declination maximum. The SuperMoon effect kicks in on the 3rd and continues through the 9th, peaking around the actual date of the alignment (and the lunar perigee as well as the Moon's southward equatorial crossing) on the 6th. Watch for geological and meteorological havoc during this period, as usual during any SuperMoon window: headline making storms with heavy rain and high winds (and the attendant flooding), plus increased moderate to severe earthquakes (Richter 5 or greater) and volcanic eruptions. Remember: this is an alignment on an astronomical scale, involving as it does the Earth, Sun and Moon. Still, astro-locality may offer useful hints as to some of the world's more susceptible regions: along coastal west Africa, eastern India and western China plus the Indochina peninsula; the Bering Straits; the Plains States down into eastern Mexico; Great Britain; and New Zealand.
Mercury's retrograde ends on the 6th, within eight hours of the SuperMoon alignment; which pretty well ensures lots of weather-related havoc for people and goods in transit through the 9th. The SuperMoon aside, the September 14 - October 6 retrograde cycle is a time when Murphy's Law reigns supreme, and everything that can go wrong all too often does. So until it's done, we'd all be wise to remain on Mercury retrograde alert. As I warned last month, strikes and other snafus disrupting the transportation and communication industries are to be expected. (This includes weather delays, governmental red tape and ordinary garden-variety stupidity.) Remember to allow extra time and take extra precautions if you're traveling or sending things, or waiting for stuff or people to arrive. Don't trust anything to go down right without extra time and effort - double-check everything. On the plus side, stuff you thought was long-lost can turn out to be just misplaced. And this is a good cycle for reviewing, fine-tuning or amending contracts, etc.
There's another and much rarer retrograde cycle getting underway a few days after Mercury goes direct, and that's the biannual Venus retrograde which begins on the 10th (and continues until November 21). Venus' retrograde is not a good sign as far as consumer spending is concerned: people hang onto their money rather than spend it readily. Nor is it a good indication for corporate earnings: a great fear of adding to already high debt loads, or of taking on new debt in uncertain times. (These are not good omens for the financial markets.) About the only thing you can count on as being on the increase during this cycle is the price of energy - oil, gasoline, natural gas, etc. - and some other commodities, e.g. gold (and possibly copper as well). Saturn's annual retrograde begins on the 11th, adding to the negative financial momentum so prevalent just before mid-October. And then, slowly but surely and despite the frequent fallback, things start to get better in the equity markets . . . most especially from mid-November onward.
Another brief period of heightened storm and seismic activity is on tap from the 11th through the 13th, as the Moon reaches maximum south declination. Once again, watch for headline making storms, Richter 5+ earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
The Mars-Saturn square - exact on October 14, within a few degrees from the 9th through the 20th - is a sign of military maneuvering, getting forces in place, and manipulating the enemy to position his forces where they're most vulnerable and/or least effective. I figure this is the follow-up to the initial air campaign that will probably be launched against Iraq within a few days of the 7th. Combat is happening, but it's mostly in the air - only covertly on the ground. Neptune's direct station on the 20th - within a few minutes arc of exact all month - means that secret operations, special forces and stealth weapons are key: the headlines tell only what the military planners want the public to think is happening, not what's really happening. Iraq is of course the major focus for this, but don't look for a big offensive modeled after the Persian Gulf War. This time around, that's the mop-up operation, not the real attack. And it comes later, probably during Mars' Sagittarius transit (January 17 - March 4).
The full moon on the 21st falls smack in the middle of another storm and seismic window, extending from the 18th through the 24th. It includes the Moon's October 19 northward equatorial crossing. Expect the typical accoutrements of these geophysical configurations: an increase in moderate to severe seismic activity (Richter 5+ earthquakes, as well as volcanic eruptions) and storms with high winds and heavy rain (possibly accompanied by floods, mudslides and the like). After a few days respite, another similar upsurge is likely between the 26th and 28th, as the Moon reaches maximum declination north of the equator on the 27th.
SPECIAL FEATURE: This month's birthdays of the famous and infamous (with astrological birth charts)