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© 2007 by Richard Nolle
last revised UT 21:45 OCT 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).

My interest is in the future because I am going to spend the rest of my life there.
-- Charles F. Kettering

Mercury's Synodic CycleThe last SuperMoon of the year, the end of Mercury's last intersolar cycle of 2007, and the beginning of a Red Planet retrograde that carries into 2008 and brings Earth and Mars to one of their biennial close passes: that's the skinny on November, and it's a mixed bag.

Mercury's current intersolar phase began when the little Sun-grazer reached maximum elongation east of the Sun - its evening star phase - back on September 29. This happens when Mercury has come 'round to the same side of the Sun as Planet Earth, and is relatively near us. The little planet is then pulling up to pass Earth on the inside track, as it were; catching up to us from behind and then passing between us and the Sun. Just as it catches up with us, Mercury passes directly between Earth and the Sun. This is Mercury's inferior conjunction with the Sun, which happened back on October 23. After the inferior conjunction, Mercury continues pulling ahead of us until it reaches its greatest elongation west of the Sun (its morning star phase), at which point the little planet is well on its way toward the far side of our parent star: in the current cycle, that takes place on November 8. (See the animated illustration for more on this.)

I've already detailed the sort of things to be ready for during the current Mercury intersolar cycle: strikes and other disruptions affecting transportation and communication (e.g. postal, phone, mass transit, trucking, airline, shipping, dock and warehouse workers, teachers and all manner of media); as well as strikes in general. Weather both terrestrial and solar (including geomagnetic storms) can play a part in the kind of breakdowns described here, but human effort (and sometimes malicious action) is a part of the mix as well. Power failures due to infrastructure breakdown and computer network disruptions caused by hacker attacks, software vulnerabilities and the like are also just a crossed wire or a keystroke away from a major mess at these times. We're just about at the end of the line for this latest Murphy's Law festival, but do keep your eye on the ball. Most especially, pay particular attention around the 1st, when Mercury turns direct while Saturn and the south lunar node are still conjunct: a time when people re-think recent decisions: buyer's remorse, back-tracking, a market sell-down . . . the latter looks distinctly likely, inasmuch as the Venus intersolar cycle that moderated financial downdrafts over the past several months came to an end on October 29. And around the 8th, watch for the markets being roiled by news that large portfolio write-downs and financial reports as well as inflation estimates have been far off the mark in the last month or two.

Synodic Cycle of MarsIn last month's forecast, I predicted that "pressures on the financial infrastructure should begin to let up for a time in October, especially as we approach the end of the month." This begins to change in November, as geopolitical tensions accelerate the closer we get to the Sun-Mars opposition of December 24. The closing of the gap between Earth and Mars reaches a critical point on the 15th, the day the Red Planet retrograde begins and the build-up to the next international crisis begins. 'A military conflict, terrorist attack or even some very awful accident or 'act of God' could be the trigger that sets off a panic in oil and other commodity prices during this Mars cycle, which occurs every couple of years (give or take a month or so), as Earth and Mars draw relatively near each other. In recent years, for example, such Mars cycles occurred in 2001 (a few months before the 9/11 attack) and in 2003 (as the insurgency phase got underway in Gulf War II). For 2007, the Mars perigee effect is active from the time Mars goes retrograde (November 15), peaking at the Sun-Mars opposition (December 24) and continuing through the end of the Red Planet's retrograde (January 30, 2008). This time around, the Mars close approach includes within its time slot a Jupiter-Pluto conjunction which, while not exact until December 11, is within a few degrees already as of late November. Before it's done, I suspect $100 a barrel oil will look like a bargain.

It's a period that's bound to be a time of elevated tension and conflict, the kind of atmosphere that cultivates inflamed passions, hot tempers and rash, even violent action. Apart from the direct impact of the fires (including energy infrastructure conflagrations), clashes, crashes and explosions that are par for the course under this sort of Mars close pass, some such incidents can raise the possibility of a disruption in the oil and natural gas supply chain - which in turn can shock the financial markets and put investors and institutions in a mad dash for the exits. Ironically, many of the world's geopolitical hot spots are right under significant Mars horizon lines in the astro-maps for the November 15 retrograde station: North Africa and the Middle East, for example. (New York is under a Mars culmination line, as well.) But this is far from a complete catalog: we're dealing with a world-wide effect, even if some areas may seem to be more in focus than others. The Uranus station on the 24th, within a degree of exact all month long, speaks of more frequent and potent uprisings, strikes, coups, revolutions and the like.

NOV 24 SuperMoon Full MoonAnd then there's the last SuperMoon alignment of the year, on the same day as the Uranus station. It's the prime indicator of severe storm potential and seismic disturbances this month. (For more on SuperMoons, see my article in the October-November 2007 issue of The Mountain Astrologer.) This isn't the only geophysical stress window of the month, but it's by far foremost among them. Consequently, be on the lookout for an upsurge in severe storms (with attendant high winds, heavy precipitation, flooding, mudslides and such) as well as notable seismic activity including moderate-to-severe earthquakes (magnitude 5 and up) and volcanic eruptions during the November SuperMoon window, which extends from late on the 18th (30 hours in advance of the lunar equatorial crossing on the 20th) through the full moon and perigee on the 24th and on through the 27th (just past the Moon's north declination extreme on the 26th).

There's no place on Earth beyond the reach of natural hazards like these - a SuperMoon alignment is planetary in scale and scope, after all - but there are a few hints as to areas of special vulnerability. Astro-mapping the November 24 the November 24 SuperMoon shows a longitudinal zone of vulnerability from Rio de Janeiro in the New World to across Tokyo in the Old, down through Indonesia and central Australia. This map also shows a suspicious looking horizon line sweeping from southern California out across the Rockies and central Canada, across southern Greenland and Iceland and down through Eastern Europe, the Middle East and the Horn of Africa. I have only hit the highlights, as you can see by examining the maps for yourself. (The Mars lines could also be mentioned, for example.)

While the SuperMoon of the 24th looks like the major geophysical stress indicator, there is another significant storm and seismic risk window that runs from the 4th through 14th. It's associated with the Moon's equatorial crossing on the 5th, the new Moon on the 9th, and the Moon's south declination extreme on the 13th.

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