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© 2007 by Richard Nolle
last revised UT 22:07 JUL 31, 2007

If you were expecting some kind of sun sign nonsense, forget about it. This is real astrology for the real world. If it's real astrology for yourself that you want, you can get it by phone or in print. And if you need help deciphering the astrological glyphs in the graphics accompanying this article, see Astroglyphs: Astrological Symbols Guide. Please note: this forecast is expressed in terms of Universal Time (UT).

Fear not for the future, weep not for the past.
-- Percy Bysshe Shelley

AUG 28 Lunar Eclipse (Total)There are no SuperMoons this month, although there's a string of them starting up in September. Still, August has a potent lunar eclipse and a few other instances of notable soli-lunar action, the sort of indicators that point to an elevated risk of geophysical disturbances like powerful storms and earthquakes at various times during the month. August 1-3, 7-17 and 22-31 are the major risk windows for destructive storms with high winds and heavy precipitation, as well as moderate to severe earthquakes (magnitude 5 and up) and volcanic eruptions. The Atlantic hurricane season seems primed for a major break-out around the middle and end of August, in particular.

Natural catastrophes are sure to be part of the picture this month, but the human kind won't be under-represented. August opens under the aegis of the July 31 Mars square (90° arc) to Saturn, which remains within a few degrees of being exact for the whole first week of the month - and then some. The Red Planet opposition to Jupiter on the 23rd is likewise lingering, from the 18th through the 29th. And the September 3 Mars square to Uranus is also within a few degrees of exact from August 29 through September 8. Add it all up, and the tally points to a month with more than its share of danger, confrontation and conflict. This operates at all levels of human behavior, from the individual to the collective, the direct to the indirect and even accidental. From extremes of criminal violence to military clashes, from fires and explosions and crashes, it's a time to keep alert and ready to duck and weave - and counterpunch, where appropriate. This isn't the big blow-up for the year - that's out there in fall and winter - so don't buy your radiation suit and gas mask just yet. But do stay sharp.

Equity markets, currencies, trade and all such manifestations of socio-political infrastructure - the big story of the year as a whole - have roared back to grab the spotlight this summer, after a fade from their earlier prominence in February. None of which is a surprise to anyone who has read my 2007 Forecast Highlights, where I wrote that "this is part of an ongoing celestial cycle that unfolds throughout 2007 - and for some years to come . . . an alignment that points to a time when people, both individually and collectively, are experiencing a crisis of confidence. What was once apparently so solid and real that you could build a life, a financial system, a global trade network, even a civilization on it: that's just what has been dissolving under the aegis of Saturn's opposition to Neptune in combination with the T-square from Jupiter."

The downward spiral of the US dollar and the related collapse of mortgage markets and other credit infrastructure is a global phenomenon, because all the world's central banks are up to their eyeballs in dollars. Certainly this is a large part of the crisis of confidence picture I have described, but it's much more than a financial issue. The governing parties of France and Japan lose their majority, President Bush becomes irrelevant, the geopolitical world loses its center of gravity . . . these are manifestations of a world-historic transformation that has been ongoing for years now, and gathering momentum since the third and final instance of the current Saturn-Neptune opposition series became exact on June 25. This is far from over. The alignment continued within a few degrees of exact well into July, and it picks up some reinforcement through a string of off-and-on activations for the next couple of months. These include Venus aligning with Saturn on August 13 and October 14, as well as the Venus opposition to Neptune on August 25 and September 21; not to mention a similar set of solar and Mercury alignments in August and the eclipses of late August and early September. All of these vector into a set of celestial patterns that point to the passing of the old order.

Synodic Cycle of VenusAs I've said, the nub of it is that the credibility of the social, political, economic and cultural edifice that underpins the dominant civilization of this planet is going Cheshire cat on us: disappearing in fits and starts before our eyes. This is all happening right on schedule, of course. My forecast for the year spelled out what to expect concomitant with the historic Jupiter-Uranus square and Saturn-Neptune opposition (both in effect in May and June just passed as well as in January and February, with Saturn-Neptune remaining in force due to the aforementioned Venus and eclipse factors). Look back, check out the major market swoons in both time frames, and you'll get an idea what to expect this month and next. Think stock market drops, currency panics and the like. For more on this, see my forecast for the year as a whole. And bear in mind this isn't some 1929-style crash. (It's a new kind of crash, a settling of the soufflé that takes years.) Think "how the mighty hath fallen" and look for bargains amidst the debris. (Think political debris too: look at the collapse of US immigration reform legislation in June.)

Venus continues its intersolar phase this month. It began with Venus as evening star (Venus Vesper) reaching its maximum eastern elongation on June 9, and ends with Venus the morning star (Venus Lucifer) attaining its greatest western elongation on October 28. This is the time, once every year and a half or so, when Venus comes up from behind Earth on the inside orbital track, catches up on our home planet and then passes between us and the Sun before leaving us behind. Included in the Venus intersolar cycle for 2007 are the July 27-September 8 retrograde (the latter date falling perilously close to the solar eclipse on the 11th), as well as Venus' inferior conjunction with the Sun on August 18 (which is conjunct Saturn - not a good sign).

During their intersolar cycle, the inferior planets Mercury and Venus are actually closer to Earth than usual, brighter and more prominent in our sky. In the case of Venus, this tends to coincide with a period of relative ease and prosperity, all else being equal. All else is not equal during this year's Venus intersolar cycle, unfortunately. It starts in the same sign as, and within a few weeks of, Saturn's location at its final opposition to Neptune of the year; at a time when these two planets are barely more than a degree away from their exact alignment in the sky. And then there's the aforementioned proximity of Saturn to Venus' conjunction with the Sun, and Venus' direct station to the September 11 solar eclipse.

All this Saturn stuff in combination with Venus' intersolar cycle tends to weaken an otherwise favorable indicator, turning apparent prosperity into something considerably less. Consequently, I'm inclined to expect that this summer brings the dawning realization that we're facing a generally lukewarm global economy at best this year. It's as if a promising start early in the year is seen to lose momentum, and I expect it will be one of those situations where central banks manage to put together rescue and stimulus packages that keep things from falling to pieces - but only just barely. The financiers and politicians can patch up this Frankenstein of a Ponzi scheme and jump-start it back to life only so many times . . . look at Zimbabwe, and see the future. Sure, Bernanke and the boys can put lipstick on the pig better than Mugabe's mob; but it's the same pig underneath it all.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not looking for the markets to make a precipitous and unmitigated slide into oblivion. An over-all downward trend (adjusted for inflation), yes; but not without some positive momentum here and there . . . as for example in the early part of the month, probably within a week or so of the Jupiter direct station on the 7th. And in any case, real assets (non-perishable commodities) will for the most part do well - petroleum and mined products in particular.

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