(Uplift | Christian Bowen) Have you ever had an experience that is so improbable you stop and wonder why it happened? Carl Jung described synchronicity as a ‘meaningful coincidence’.
A meaningful coincidence
There are no accidents … there is only some purpose that we haven’t yet understood.
– Deepak Chopra
Have you ever had an experience that is so improbable you stop and wonder why it happened? The chance of these series of events being so small that it could not simply be a coincidence. A feeling the universe is moving in such a way as to show you something, that the unlikely coincidence has some form of meaning behind it. Many readers will be familiar with the term synchronicity, for those that are not, it was first introduced by the famous psychologist Carl Jung who, unlike many of his peers at the time, held true to his spiritual roots. He described synchronicity as a ‘meaningful coincidence’.
Synchronicity is a beautiful rabbit hole that can be explored on many levels, anything from seeing a simple coincidence, a feeling of being on the right path or following the signs to find life-changing patterns. The further you explore and the deeper you go the more you can gain from the wisdom of the universe. My life has changed many times over the years, each time synchronicity has whispered words of wisdom to me, guiding me and showing me a path towards the next chapter of my journey.
A story of synchronicity
In 1995, going through a divorce, Kate had been exploring the signs of synchronicity looking for a new chapter to her life. Many books were bought and read for guidance, one of which was the Celestine Prophecy, a fictional account of a character’s spiritual awakening as he goes through a transitional period of his life. The mirroring of the story and her life was just the first of many coincidences that were about to happen. Kate never read the book but instead lent it to her sister’s friend. Months later, a series of chance events allowed Kate to explore the country of Ireland. Travelling with a rucksack and a group of lesser-known acquaintances, she looked for a place she could call her new home, feeling and seeing the signs that Ireland would be the right country.
While in West Cork she was asked to help walk a child home from school, where she met a lady called Kathy. They got talking about the reasons for being in Ireland and Kate explained how she was following the signs of synchronicity. At which point Kathy produced a book from her bookshelf and recommended she read it. As Kate opened the front page of the Celestine Prophecy, she was amazed to see her own name in her own handwriting. Later that day she was offered a cabin to live in. Twenty-Five years later, she still lives in the wilderness of Ireland tending her garden and fulfilling her dream of being an Astrologer. Synchronicity for her has become the norm of everyday life.
This is just one example of many lives that have been changed profoundly by following the signs and hidden meaning behind synchronicity. Although synchronicity does not necessarily need to change your life dramatically, it can be active in much simpler ways. Giving you the feeling you are on the right path or a message from a loved one, it could even be just a little help at the right time while you are trying to solve a problem.
Synchronicities are another way the Universe gives us guidance. You might be in a bookstore when a book falls off the shelf in front of you. A song might start playing that has the exact message you need to hear. A friend who can help you might call you seemingly out of the blue.
– Gabrielle Bernstein
The science behind the synchronistic
Synchronicities are observed through the eye of the beholder, it is us that give them meaning, changing what could be seen as a mere coincidence into a meaningful coincidence. It is difficult to quantify a synchronicity through any normal means of science, each experience is personal and shaped by our own observations. To factualise synchronicities would be like asking someone to prove that their dreams exist. Although as science delves more into the world of quantum physics, neurology and psychology it starts to reveal a possible comparison between the spiritual and the physical. A recent study found that out of two hundred and twenty-six psychotherapists, councillors and psychologists, 44% reported synchronistic experiences in a therapeutic setting and that 67% felt that these experiences could be useful for therapy.
Neuro-psychology has shown that experiences associated with a sense of wonder, fascination and awe, lead to the development of new brain cells and a better connection between them. Synchronicities hold true to these feelings, helping to form and reorganise brain-cell connections. Synchronistic experiences release dopamine which helps motivation and goal-directed behaviour, this enhances mental well-being. It is said that within synchronicities are tiny bits of satori or enlightenment, giving the sense of an underlying universal connection.
Einstein’s spooky action at a distance or new age physics “quantum entanglement” almost sheds light on the possibility of effecting the universe with our consciousness. If two particles can interact with each other from a distance with no obvious connections, then why can’t our particles within our mind interact with the universe around us or even connect with other people’s consciousness?
Pauline Phillips, the founder of the Dear Abby column, described a synchronistic phenomenon called “pennies from heaven”. Thousands of readers have written in over the years, telling stories of thinking about loved ones that have passed away while coming across a coin that has their loved one’s birth, marriage or death year on it. Many readers have taken this as a sign, finding comfort in the connecting coincidence, feeling as if their dearly departed is sending them a message.
It has been a century since synchronicities were brought into the world of modern science and only now is science catching up to take a peek into the mechanics of synchronicity. Delving, tarot cards and oracle readings have always been a great way to better understand synchronicities. Although it is not the synchronicities that we are shining a light on, these are just tools to tap into our intuition, allowing us to have a clearer picture of the connection between our intuitive mind and the universe. The same goes for meditation and reading dreams. What you begin to understand is that to access the synchronicities you have to tap into yourself, the deeper parts of you that are always naturally connected to the universe.
When you remain connected to the Divine, She will speak to you — in patterns and connections, signs and synchronicities, and all sorts of gifts. When magic rises to the surface of your awareness, and your life, you know you’re blessed. It makes life a wild adventure. It’s also a source of incredible strength, coming to you when you most need it.
– Phyllis Curott
Saying yes to the universe
The atoms within us and the universe around us are all fundamentally made up of energy. Our intuitive mind harmonises with these energies of the universe sending complex patterns out in front of us, these patterns come back into our lives in the form of synchronicities. Our inner monologue impresses itself upon the universe, our worries, our hopes, our dreams, the universe listens and reacts. Giving paths to be taken and doors to be opened.
The first step is seeing the signs, seeing the meaningful coincidences within our lives. The next step is giving them meaning, finding what they mean to you and then taking action based on what you believe to be true. Saying yes to the universe, using your gut feelings, your instincts, following a path unwinding in front of you bring tremendous rewards and clarity. Through both the hard times and the good times. Synchronicities can come when you most need them or when you least expect them.
Exploring these leads to a deeper connection to the universe. It can be an adventure, new experiences or profound insights. They can happen at any time anywhere, if you want to see them all you have to do is open your heart, trust in your mind and look with open eyes — inside and out. They are all around you just waiting to give guidance and purpose.
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