I’m curious – have you noticed a higher than normal occurrence of synchronicities in your life recently? Since the start of 2018 I’m noticing more than average instances of perfect timing, small world moments, and tremendously convenient coincidences. It’s getting spooky.

For example… This Friday Howard and I are having dinner with a very successful producer and his wife. You might recall from an earlier blog post that I’ve been using this trip to LA to see if there might be interest in a feature film based on my life story. For the last few months, I’ve been describing the project as “Erin Brockovich meets Life of Pi”. Earlier in January, just as I was finishing lunch with Michael Palin (did I mention I’d had lunch with Michael Palin?!) another friend of his dropped by. That friend had worked with Michael on A Fish Called Wanda, and also happened to be one of the producers on…. Erin Brockovich.

Coincidence? Manifestation? Who knows.

The most recent occurrence happened about an hour ago. This morning I delivered a keynote for Kaiser Permanente here in Huntington Beach, California. All went well, and I was enjoying a relaxing afternoon when I decided to go get a cup of tea from the coffee shop on the far side of the resort. On the way, I bumped into someone I had last seen two years ago at a different conference and had really got along well with. He works for Kaiser Permanente too, but wasn’t meant to be at this conference. How lucky that I chose that particular moment to schlep over to get my afternoon cuppa, that I chose that particular route, and that Wade also happened to be walking that way.

Funnily enough, Wade mentioned that he’s experiencing a lot of perfect timings this year, which got me thinking….

Is this a widespread phenomenon?

Neither of the instances above is remarkable in themselves, but I have experienced at least half a dozen other significant examples since the start of the year. Perhaps I think of a person I haven’t heard from in years, and shortly thereafter get an email from them. A single concept, that I may never have heard of before, crops up three times in as many days. I arrive in LA, and by chance a disproportionate number of my friends happen to be in town. Even though I can find no logical reason (in a linear Newtonian world) why these things happen, it feels as if they are not random (could this be a quantum world?).

What is going on here?

You can make up your own mind on the meaning (or lack thereof) of synchronicities, but there are definitely those who believe they are  significant.

Around 2002 or 2003, I read a book that changed my worldview: The Celestine Prophecy. The narrator is in a transitional period of his life – as indeed I was at that time – and begins to notice instances of synchronicity, which lead him like a sequence of clues into a spiritual adventure. “Coincidences” become something important to pay attention to.

Jung’s view of synchronicity

The term synchronicity was first coined by Carl Gustav Jung to describe events that have no apparent causal connection, but to the person who experiences them there is a subjective sense that there is a meaningful connection. Lots more on this on Wikipedia’s Synchronicity entry.

I had an aged friend, who sadly passed on a number of years ago. Sir John Rawlins was fascinated by synchronicities, and along with a friend he recorded all such events in a notebook. He believed that an acceleration of synchronistic occurrences would be significant. Too bad he’s not around for me to ask him what he believed the significance to be.

So I will ask you. I have three questions:

  1. Are you experiencing more synchronicities than normal?
  2. Do you attribute any significance to that?
  3. If so, what significance?

Myself, I choose to believe that synchronicities are like a little wink from the Universe. We may often feel we live in a VUCA* world, where all is chaos and randomness, but once in a while the veil is lifted, and we see that there is, if not exactly a plan, then at least some degree of method to the madness. And then we can relax into the flow and know that we don’t travel alone.

*(A military acronym: Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, Ambiguous – also the subject of my keynote this morning, on Navigating the Future)

 

Other Stuff:

Having a fabulous time in LA  – catching up with old friends and forging new connections. Tonight we have a screening of my Atlantic documentary in Marina del Mar. If you’re interested, and/or if you know film industry people, please contact Autumn Udell for further details.

Tepoztlan

Spent the weekend in San Diego brainstorming a new project I’m working on – a global women’s network. Once #MeToo has finished venting millennia of fury, we need a new vision to come into play: a world in which masculine and feminine are in balance. I am fascinated with creating that vision. More on that soon.

Next week we go to Mexico City and Tepoztlan. Tepoztlan was one of the Universe’s best efforts this year – I’d never heard of it before, and yet it turns out that a team of radically innovative software developers that I want to meet just happen to be there, about an hour and a half outside Mexico City. Happy coincidence indeed.

 

 

 

 

8 Comments

  • Hi Roz-
    Synchronicity. I’ve been working on making storage batteries to suck up excess electrical energy from photovoltaics during peak production times, to be used during the evening peak usage times. I’ve spoken to different groups, then attended a building trade show talked to storage vendors, and BOOM! all’s going smoothly where before there were nothing but roadblocks. In the past month alone, there were 773 storage permits. This is a MAJOR step toward Hawaii’s goal of 100% clean electrical energy by 2045. In fact, this is going to push us way ahead of schedule! It may have been the result of hard work by many people, and to me that sudden news was synchronicity!

    • Excellent news, Howard! Delighted to hear that Hawaii is showing the way on clean energy. Hopefully the rest of the world will follow!

  • Some people replied by email to my newsletter, rather than posting the comments here. I wanted to share. Here is one from George C:

    Great blog post, Roz, lots of food for thought. My thought is that synchronicities are happening all the time all around us. But we become aware of them only when we can see around our egos. That can happen when some external force beats our egos into submission (e.g. when an addict hits bottom) or when we learn to get our egos under control through some practice, like yoga, meditation, running, or maybe rowing around the world.

    Our egos are programmed to see chaos and protect us from it. I try, not always successfully, to disbelieve or at least be skeptical of my ego.

    Thanks for the mind food!

    • I definitely agree. Our egos/brains are there to protect us from harm, so they are naturally sceptical about anything new, and often fail to see things that aren’t perceived as a threat. Also agree that mindfulness practices (rowing included) help open up our peripheral vision to synchronicities etc.

  • Comment from Dick S:
    I am a fan of you and read your books and followed your blog when you rowed the Pacific.
    I have and still experience the serendipities for the past 23 years since meeting a Jewish girl (My very best friend) following the untimely death of my wife. My friend calls these occurrences “Bashert”. Very amazing!
    Bashert, (Yiddish: באַשערט‎), is a Yiddish word that means “destiny”. It is often used in the context of one’s divinely foreordained spouse or soulmate, who is called “basherte” (female) or “basherter” (male).

  • From Dave M:
    I was watching something about the moon last night, it being a super moon, and it made me ponder again, can it really just be a happy coincidence that intelligence just happens to have arisen on Earth to a sufficient level to understand about planetary orbits at the relatively short period in the Earth’s history that the Moon and Earth just happen to be just the right distance apart that they can appear to be the same size and give us the wonders that are solar eclipses? I don’t think thee are any scientific reasons/connections…

    Even if synchronicities and serendipities are a result of how our brains have evolved to recognise patterns, similar to our ability to see faces in clouds and rocks, I think that being playfully open to them, particularly in a positive way can certainly be beneficial. I am all for determination to see something through and not be put off easily, but if I keep noticing glaring ‘signs’ that seem to be telling me I am heading badly off course, I may take a step back and reconsider. I say playfully, as it could be too easy to see negative signs everywhere and start to believe the world is against me and give up too easily. I think it feels magic when the sort of synchronicities you talk about in your blog happen and you almost feel spirited along an interesting journey. My life hasn’t stopped feeling like this since my year roaming around New Zealand, which opened up this way of feeling my way through life, with much more positive outcomes than previously.

    • Thanks for your lovely and thoughtful message. I often wonder about the timings of things, and especially as I’m currently reading Barbara Marx Hubbard’s “Conscious Evolution”, in which she talks about our current ability to choose mindfully how we evolve next, while in the past – before Darwin, and before we understood epigenetics – our evolution was always haphazard, not conscious.

      And never before have we had such an urgent need to evolve!

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