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Encyclopedia > Synchronicity

Synchronicity is the experience of two or more events which occur in a meaningful manner, but which are causally inexplicable to the person or persons experiencing them. The events would also have to suggest some underlying pattern in order to satisfy the definition of synchronicity as originally developed by Swiss psychologist Carl Jung. It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... A psychologist is a scientist and/or clinician who studies psychology, the systematic investigation of the human mind, including behavior and cognition. ... Carl Jungs partially autobiographical work Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Fontana edition Carl Gustav Jung (IPA: ) (July 26, 1875, Kesswil – June 6, 1961, Küsnacht) was a Swiss psychiatrist, influential thinker, and founder of analytical psychology. ...


Carl Jung coined the word to describe what he called "temporally coincident occurrences of acausal events." Jung variously described synchronicity as an "'acausal connecting principle'" (i.e. a pattern of connection that cannot be explained by direct causality), "meaningful coincidence" and "acausal parallelism". Jung introduced the concept in his 1952 paper "Synchronicity — An Acausal Connecting Principle", though he had been considering the concept for almost thirty years.[1] It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ...


It differs from mere coincidence in that synchronicity implies not just a happenstance, but an underlying pattern or dynamic expressed through meaningful relationships or events. Look up Happenstance in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


It was a principle that Jung felt encompassed his concepts of archetypes and the collective unconscious [2], in that it was descriptive of a governing dynamic that underlay the whole of human experience and history — social, emotional, psychological, and spiritual. An archetype is a generic, idealized model of a person, object, or concept from which similar instances are derived, copied, patterned, or emulated. ... Collective unconscious is a term of analytical psychology originally coined by Carl Jung. ...


Jung believed that many experiences perceived as coincidence were not merely due to chance but, instead, suggested the manifestation of parallel events or circumstances reflecting this governing dynamic. [3] Coincidence is the noteworthy alignment of two or more events or circumstances without obvious causal connection. ... Chance can be used in any of the following contexts: Probability Luck Randomness See also the Ancient Greek concept of Chance Chance, a 1913 novel by Joseph Conrad. ...


One of Jung's favourite quotes on synchronicity was from Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll, in which the White Queen says to Alice: "It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards". [4] Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871) is a work of childrens literature by Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson), generally categorized as literary nonsense. ... Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) – believed to be a self-portrait Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (January 27, 1832 – January 14, 1898), better known by the pen name Lewis Carroll, was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican clergyman and photographer. ...


Events that happen which appear at first to be coincidence but are later found to be causally related are termed incoincident.

Contents

Examples

  • A well-known example of synchronicity is the true story of the French writer Émile Deschamps who in 1805 was treated to some plum pudding by the stranger Monsieur de Fortgibu. Ten years later, he encountered plum pudding on the menu of a Paris restaurant, and wanted to order some, but the waiter told him the last dish had already been served to another customer, who turned out to be de Fortgibu. Many years later in 1832 Émile Deschamps was at a diner, and was once again offered plum pudding. He recalled the earlier incident and told his friends that only de Fortgibu was missing to make the setting complete — and in the same instant the now senile de Fortgibu entered the room.[5]
  • During production of The Wizard of Oz, a coat bought from a second-hand store for the costume of Professor Marvel was later found to have belonged to L. Frank Baum, author of the children's book upon which the film is based. [6]

Émile Deschamps (1795-1871) was a French poet. ... Christmas pudding is the dessert traditionally served on Christmas day in Britain and Ireland, as well as in some Commonwealth countries. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) The Eiffel Tower in Paris, as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, see The Wizard of Oz (adaptations). ... The Laughing Dragon of Oz, see Frank Joslyn Baum . ... Dark Side of the Rainbow (also known as Dark Side of Oz) is a perceived effect created by listening to the 1973 Pink Floyd concept album The Dark Side of the Moon while watching the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz for moments where the film and the album appear...

Study

A recent study within the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Lab (the PEAR lab), suggested that there is a small, though statistically measurable, link between human thought and patterns that occur in random data sets. There is no evidence as to whether this is caused by individuals unintentionally recognizing complex patterns and then moulding their thoughts towards an unconsciously known result or the thoughts of the individual are themselves affecting the random patterns in a manner of individuation. This study's results have not been replicated, and its methodologies are disputed.[7] The PEAR lab is closing at the end of February, 2007, after conducting 28 years of research on the relationships and interactions between Mind and Matter. The Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) program was established at Princeton University in 1979 by Robert G. Jahn, then Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science, to pursue rigorous scientific study of the interaction of human consciousness with physical devices, systems, and processes common to contemporary engineering practice. ... Individuation comprises the processes whereby the undifferentiated becomes or develops individual characteristics, or the opposite process, by which components of an individual are integrated into a more indivisible whole. ...


Criticism

Since the theory of synchronicity is not testable[citation needed] according to the scientific method, it is not widely regarded[citation needed] as scientific at all, but rather as pseudoscientific or an example of magical thinking. However, it is doubtful that Jung would have considered the theory as scientific or scientifically testable. Scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena and acquiring new knowledge, as well as for correcting and integrating previous knowledge. ... Part of a scientific laboratory at the University of Cologne. ... Phrenology is regarded today as a classic example of pseudoscience. ... In psychology and cognitive science, magical thinking is non-scientific causal reasoning (e. ...


A broader scientific objection (unrelated to testability) arises when Jung's synchronicity is considered via Occam's razor: that positing an underlying mechanism for meaningfully interpreted correlations invokes an overly complicated explanation for a "meaningful coincidence" which might be better explained by simple coincidence. The suggestion is that, given the vast array of observed phenomena, and given our innate interest in and awareness of coincidence, it is inevitable that such rare, serendipitous "meaningful coincidences" will sometimes come about via random chance. For example, though not everyone has experienced a synchronistic "plum pudding" or "Frenchman" encounter, it is nonetheless statistically probable that such odd coincidences occasionally occur. If the objection is accurate, synchronistic explanations are the result of faulty abductive reasoning.[citation needed] William of Ockham Occams razor (sometimes spelled Ockhams razor) is a principle attributed to the 14th-century English logician and Franciscan friar William of Ockham. ... Coincidence is the noteworthy alignment of two or more events or circumstances without obvious causal connection. ... It has been suggested that Abductive validation be merged into this article or section. ...


References in popular culture

  • John Constantine, the main character in the Vertigo Comics series Hellblazer, is sometimes seen "riding the synchronicity highway," to meet certain goals or even just to one up those around him. This has the same effect as that described in this article, and it is one of John Constantine's more unusual tricks, and part of what makes him so dangerous. He is also seen doing this in Books of Magic, the graphic novel by Neil Gaiman.
  • The phenomenon is also explored, though not named, in "The Red Notebook" by Paul Auster, and is considered a major theme of his entire bibliography, appearing in some form in almost every work.
  • In the 1983 release Synchronicity by The Police (A&M Records), bassist Sting is reading a copy of Jung's Synchronicity on the front cover along with a negative/superimposed image of the actual text of the synchronicity hypothesis. A photo on the back cover also shows a close-up but mirrored and upside-down image of the book. There are two songs titled "Synchronicity I" and "Synchronicity II" included in the album. The latter song contrasts the dangerous breakdown of a desperate family man with the simultaneous emergence of a menacing something from the bottom of a dark Scottish loch. See The Police, Robert Aziz and marketing the A&M album, Synchronicity.
  • In the 1976 film The Eagle Has Landed, the character Max Radl (Robert Duvall) asks a subordinate if he is familiar with the works of Jung, and then explains the theory of Synchronicity.
  • The Dirk Gently series of books by Douglas Adams often plays on the synchronicity concept. The main character carries a "pocket I Ching" that also functions as a calculator, up to a point (see A suffusion of yellow).
  • The concept of ta'veren in Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time series functions similarly to synchronicity.
  • In the film Repo Man Miller's famous Plate 'o' Shrimp[8] theory is an exact representation of synchronicity.
  • In a 2002 album Tenth Dimensions by metal artist Blaze, a lot of the songs refer to synchronicity, with some songs like "Stealing Time" directly using the word.
  • In the film I ♥ Huckabees, a character hires existential detectives to solve his coincidence. They caution him: "Not all coincidences are meaningful!"
  • In Philip K Dick's The Game Players of Titan, several characters possessing pre-cognitive abilities cite the acausal principle of synchronicity as an element which hampers their ability to accurately predict certain possible futures.
  • In the D20 Modern roleplaying game Urban Arcana, Synchronicity is a magic spell that subtly rearranges reality, allowing the subject to avoid the minor inconveniences and hassles of everyday life. While the spell is in effect, buses and trains run on time, stoplights and crosswalk signals change in your favor just as you approach an intersection, and the flow of street traffic and pedestrians will allow you to proceed unimpeded, without hurry or delay. Waiters and clerks will approach as soon as they are wanted, and depart when you desire privacy. Taxi cabs, elevators, vacant parking spaces, and so forth will similarly be available wherever and whenever needed. This spell is particularly helpful when the subject is chasing someone or is trying to escape pursuers.
  • In the television series Strange Luck, the main character Chance Harper spends his entire life experiencing unplanned synchronicity, which he takes advantage of by becoming a freelance photographer.
  • The Dalai Lama quoted: "I am open to the guidance of synchronicity, and do not let expectations hinder my path."

John Constantine (born May 10, 1953 in Liverpool, England) is the fictional protagonist of the comic series Hellblazer. ... Vertigo logo Vertigo is an imprint of comic book and graphic novel publisher DC Comics. ... Hellblazer is a contemporary horror comic book series published by the Vertigo imprint of DC Comics. ... The Books of Magic is a four-issue comic book miniseries written by Neil Gaiman and published by the DC Comics imprint Vertigo. ... Neil Richard Gaiman () (born November 10, 1960) is an English author of science fiction and fantasy short stories and novels, graphic novels, comics, and films. ... The Red Notebook is a collection of stories written by Paul Auster in four parts. ... Paul Auster Paul Benjamin Auster (born February 3, 1947, Newark, New Jersey) is a Brooklyn-based author. ... Synchronicity is the fifth album by The Police, released in 1983. ... The Police are a three-piece rock band consisting of singer/bassist Sting (Gordon Sumner), guitarist Andy Summers, and drummer Stewart Copeland. ... A&M Records is an American record label, owned and operated by Universal Music Group. ... Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner, CBE (born 2 October 1951), universally known by his stage name Sting, is an English musician from Newcastle upon Tyne. ... Synchronicity II is a name of a song by The Police. ... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... Robert Selden Duvall (born January 5, 1931) is an Academy Award and four-time Golden Globe winning American film actor and director. ... Dirk Gently is a fictional character created by Douglas Adams and featured in the books Dirk Gentlys Holistic Detective Agency and The Long Dark Teatime of the Soul. ... Douglas Noël Adams (11 March 1952 – 11 May 2001) was an English author, comic radio dramatist, and musician. ... Alternative meaning: I Ching (monk) The I Ching (Traditional Chinese: 易經, pinyin y jīng; Cantonese IPA: jɪk6gɪŋ1; Cantonese Jyutping: jik6ging1; alternative romanizations include I Jing, Yi Ching, Yi King) is the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. ... A term used in the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan Taveren : A person around whom the Wheel of Time weaves all surrounding life-threads, perhaps ALL life-threads, to form a Web of Destiny. ... For other persons named Robert Jordan, see Robert Jordan (disambiguation). ... This article is about a fantasy series. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... B L A Z E is a British heavy metal band formed in 2000 by former Wolfsbane and Iron Maiden vocalist Blaze Bayley. ... I ♥ Huckabees is a film released in 2004. ... Philip Kindred Dick (December 16, 1928 – March 2, 1982), often known by his initials PKD, or by the pen name Richard Phillips, was an American science fiction writer and novelist who changed the genre profoundly. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... A roleplaying game (RPG) is a type of game in which players assume the roles of characters and collaboratively create stories. ... Urban Arcana is a campaign setting for the d20 Modern roleplaying game that builds on a small campaign model included in the original rulebook. ... The spell is a magical act intended to cause an effect on reality using supernatural means of liturgical or ritual nature. ... Strange Luck was a television series on FOX starring D.B. Sweeney in the role of Chance Harper, a freelance photographer afflicted with a bizarre tendency to always be in the wrong place at the right time. ... The 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso (1876-1933). ...

Notes

  1. ^ Roderick Main (2000). Religion, Science, and Synchronicity. Harvest: Journal for Jungian Studies.
  2. ^ Jung defined the collective unconscious as akin to instincts in Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious.
  3. ^ In Synchronicity in the final two pages of the Conclusion, Jung stated that not all coincidences are meaningful and further explained the creative causes of this phenomenon.
  4. ^ Through the Looking-Glass, by Lewis Carroll, Ch. 5, Wool and Water.

    'It's very good jam,' said the Queen.
    'Well, I don't want any TO-DAY, at any rate.'
    'You couldn't have it if you DID want it,' the Queen said. 'The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday--but never jam to-day.'
    'It MUST come sometimes to "jam to-day,"' Alice objected.
    'No, it can't,' said the Queen. 'It's jam every OTHER day: to-day isn't any OTHER day, you know.'
    'I don't understand you,' said Alice. 'It's dreadfully confusing!'
    'That's the effect of living backwards,' the Queen said kindly: 'it always makes one a little giddy at first--'
    'Living backwards!' Alice repeated in great astonishment. 'I never heard of such a thing!'
    '--but there's one great advantage in it, that one's memory works both ways.'
    'I'm sure MINE only works one way,' Alice remarked. 'I can't remember things before they happen.'
    'It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards,' the Queen remarked. Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871) is a work of childrens literature by Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson), generally categorized as literary nonsense. ... Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) – believed to be a self-portrait Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (January 27, 1832 – January 14, 1898), better known by the pen name Lewis Carroll, was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican clergyman and photographer. ...

  5. ^ Jung, C. G., Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle, from The Collected Works of C.G. Jung, vol. 8, page 15, Princeton/Bollingen, 1973
  6. ^ Snopes entry.
  7. ^ Article on Wired.com
  8. ^ From the wikiquote page on Repo Man:

    A lot o' people don't realize what's really going on. They view life as a bunch o' unconnected incidents 'n things. They don't realize that there's this, like, lattice o' coincidence that lays on top o' everything. Give you an example; show you what I mean: suppose you're thinkin' about a plate o' shrimp. Suddenly someone'll say, like, plate, or shrimp, or plate o' shrimp out of the blue, no explanation. No point in lookin' for one, either. It's all part of a cosmic unconsciousness.

References and further reading

  • Carl Jung (1972). Synchronicity — An Acausal Connecting Principle. Routledge and Kegan Paul. ISBN 0-7100-7397-6. 
  • Carl Jung (1977). Jung on Synchronicity and the Paranormal: Key Readings. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-15508-8. 
  • Carl Jung (1981). The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-01833-2. 
  • Robert Aziz, C.G. Jung’s Psychology of Religion and Synchronicity (1990), currently in its 10th printing, is a refereed publication of The State University of New York Press. ISBN 0-7914-0166-9.
  • Robert Aziz, Synchronicity and the Transformation of the Ethical in Jungian Psychology in Carl B. Becker, ed. Asian and Jungian Views of Ethics. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1999. ISBN 0-313-30452-1.
  • Robert Aziz, The Syndetic Paradigm:The Untrodden Path Beyond Freud and Jung (2007), a refereed publication of The State University of New York Press ISBN 13:978-0-7914-6982-8.
  • Marie-Louise von Franz (1980). On Divination and Synchronicity: The Psychology of Meaningful Chance. Inner City Books. ISBN 0-919123-02-3. 
  • Joseph Jaworski (1996). Synchronicity: the inner path of leadership. Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc.. ISBN 1-881052-94-X. 
  • Arthur Koestler (1973). The Roots of Coincidence. Vintage. ISBN 0-394-71934-4. 
  • Victor Mansfield, (Physicist) (1995). Science, Synchronicity and Soul-Making. Open Court Publishing Company. ISBN 0-8126-9304-3. 
  • Elisabeth Mardorf, Das kann doch kein Zufall sein [1]
  • F. David Peat (1987). Synchronicity, The Bridge Between Matter and Mind. Bantam. ISBN 0-553-34676-8. 
  • Richard Wilhelm (1986). Lectures on the I Ching: Constancy and Change Bollingen edition. Princeton University Press; Reprint. ISBN 0-691-01872-3.  Note especially the foreword by Carl Jung. (The I Ching is a type of oracle, or 'synchronicity computer', used for divination.)

The Roots of Coincidence, written by Arthur Koestler, is an accessible introduction to theories of parapsychology, including extra-sensory perception and psychokinesis. ... Bollingen is a village near Rapperswil, Switzerland. ... Carl Jungs partially autobiographical work Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Fontana edition Carl Gustav Jung (IPA: ) (July 26, 1875, Kesswil – June 6, 1961, Küsnacht) was a Swiss psychiatrist, influential thinker, and founder of analytical psychology. ... Alternative meaning: I Ching (monk) The I Ching (Traditional Chinese: 易經, pinyin y jīng; Cantonese IPA: jɪk6gɪŋ1; Cantonese Jyutping: jik6ging1; alternative romanizations include I Jing, Yi Ching, Yi King) is the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. ... Consulting the Oracle by John William Waterhouse, showing eight priestesses in a temple of prophecy An oracle is a person or persons considered to be the source of wise counsel or prophetic opinion; an infallible authority, usually spiritual in nature. ... This article is about the religious practice of divination. ...

See also

In theology, Divine Providence, or simply Providence, is the sovereignty, superintendence, or agency of God over events in peoples lives and throughout history. ... Coincidence is the noteworthy alignment of two or more events or circumstances without obvious causal connection. ... The Global Consciousness Project, (GCP) also called the EGG Project, is a long-running science experiment maintained by an international collaboration of about 100 research scientists and engineers. ... Littlewoods Law states that individuals can expect a miracle to happen to them at the rate of about one per month. ... A miracle, derived from the old Latin word miraculum meaning something wonderful, is a striking interposition of divine intervention by a God in the universe by which the ordinary course and operation of Nature is overruled, suspended, or modified. ... In philosophy, ontology (from the Greek , genitive : of being (part. ... Predestination and foreordination are religious concepts, under which the relationship between the beginning of things and the destiny of things is discussed. ... Reality shift is a term used by proponents of anomalous phenomena to describe what they feel are enigmatic changes in physical, spatial, or temporal reality. ... The Pauli effect is a tongue-in-cheek reference. ... Look up Serendipity in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The 23 Enigma is a belief that the number 23 is of particular or unusual significance, especially in relation to disasters. ... Dark Side of the Rainbow (also known as Dark Side of Oz) is a perceived effect created by listening to the 1973 Pink Floyd concept album The Dark Side of the Moon while watching the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz for moments where the film and the album appear... Pink Floyd are an English rock band that earned recognition for their psychedelic rock music, and, as they evolved, for their avant-garde progressive rock music. ... This article is about the Pink Floyd album. ... The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, see The Wizard of Oz (adaptations). ... The unconscious mind (or subconscious) is the aspect (or puported aspect) of the mind of which we are not directly conscious or aware. ... Cosmic Ordering is the belief that individuals can use their desires to connect with the cosmos and make those desires become reality, [1] The idea is connected to the New Age movement and other concepts such as the Law of Attraction. ... The Monadology (Monadologie, 1714) is one of Gottfried Leibniz’s works that best define his philosophy, monadism. ... Gottfried Leibniz Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz (July 1, 1646 in Leipzig - November 14, 1716 in Hannover) was a German philosopher, scientist, mathematician, diplomat, librarian, and lawyer of Sorb descent. ... Alternative meaning: I Ching (monk) The I Ching (Traditional Chinese: 易經, pinyin y jīng; Cantonese IPA: jɪk6gɪŋ1; Cantonese Jyutping: jik6ging1; alternative romanizations include I Jing, Yi Ching, Yi King) is the oldest of the Chinese classic texts. ...

External links


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