Meaning Of Synchronicity And Effects On Our Lives Philosophy Essay

The concept of synchronicity was firstly introduced by the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Gustav Jung, a thinker whose ideas are important for New Age metaphysics. If we try to indicate what Jung means by synchronicity, the shortest description would be that it is "meaningful coincidence." However, this needs a bit more explanation to learn why Jung sees synchronicity as meaningful coincidence. Initially, "A coincidence is a surprising concurrence of events, perceived as meaningfully related, with no apparent causal connection"(Diaconis and Mosteller 853). Taking this definition into account, we can simply understand Jung’s theory because according to him synchronicity is an acausal connecting principle; there is no causal connection between synchronistic events. Moreover, Jung argued that meaningful coincidences occur far more frequently than chance allows. With respect to this perception of synchronistic events or meaningful coincidences, causality and chance cannot be the reason behind them. At that point, I think the meaningful coincidences exist in our lives because there is a high-powered thing which controls them. In this case, I suggest that this high-powered thing can only be God who has the absolute control on our lives. Therefore, the source of the synchronistic events should be the divine religion and more specifically God.

To argue that the source of the synchronistic events is religion, first I will explain the place of coincidences in our lives and I will give some examples. Next, I will evaluate scientific and metaphysical studies about coincidences and compare them. With doing this, I will show that these studies are insufficient to explain the source of the synchronistic events. In this way, through my analysis, to validate my claim, I will try to demonstrate that the source of meaningful coincidences is religious and I will also suggest an exact spiritual power which is God. Afterward, I will explain the spiritual and religious messages in synchronistic events and interpret them. In this way, I will discuss our role in meaningful coincidences as humans and then I will be able to define ideal behaviors in the synchronicity process.

For thousand of years in human history, coincidences abound in our everyday life. They are delightful, confounding and amazing. On the other hand, sometimes they can be annoying and disturbing. It does not matter what type of coincidence we face with, it has a big impact on the course of our lives. For instance, they can point to new discoveries. They can alter our lives; where we work and at what, whom we live with, and other basic features of daily existence often seem to rest on coincidence (Diaconis and Mosteller 853). In this case, coincidences are not unusual or rare but the important point is how much are we aware of them? Do we think that they are insignificant or do we think that they have some meanings? To understand the meaning of coincidences, we should observe and think deeply about them.

To see some tangible examples of coincidences, examination of Kammerer’s studies would be useful because he reports coincidental events over a 15-year period. There are two typical examples: "My brother-in-law E. V. W. attended a concert in Bosendorfer Hall in Vienna on 11 Nov. 1910; he had seat #9 and also coatcheck #9" (Kammerer 24). "On the walls of the Artist’s Café across from the University of Vienna hang pictures of famous actors, singers, and musicians. On the 5th of May 1917, I noticed for the first time a portrait of Dr. Tyvolt. The waiter brought me the New Free Press, in which there was an article on the crisis in the German Popular Theater, with Dr. Tyvolt as the author" (Kammerer 27). As we see, these are not unfamiliar to us; we can sometimes face with such coincidences. For example, last year, in my dream, I saw an old friend of mine that I have not seen for a long time and he was in a bad situation. Then, I woke up and worried about him and suddenly, my phone rang and that was him. On the phone, he said that his little sister called me accidentally. After this event, I was really surprised and I thought that chance cannot be the reason of it. Therefore, I started to consider deeply about coincidences.

To study coincidences, initially, I want to clarify and examine the basic process of meaningful coincidences with respect to scientific perception. In a coincidence, the first thing we should think about is the hidden cause. There are some scientific discoveries about finding this hidden cause. For example: "Changing in the world can create coincidences; likewise, changes in our own behavior such as a new pattern of reading or eating can create a pattern. Frequency of forecasting the same dire event improves the chances of simultaneity of forecast and outcome. Forgetting many failed predictions makes success seem more surprising"(Diaconis and Mosteller 859). However, it can be the only explanation of very little part of coincidences. On the other hand, the cause of vast numbers of coincidences is still a mystery according to this scientific approach. Therefore, this scientific approach is insufficient to explain the source of the meaningful coincidences.

A psychological [1] approach can be useful to understand the coincidences. The main suggestion of this psychological approach is: "What we perceive as coincidences and what we neglect as not notable depends on what we are sensitive to" (Diaconis and Mosteller 859). Therefore, according to this approach, to identify an event as coincidence, we use our previous experiences. At this point, I want to discuss Carl Jung’s "collective unconscious" theory because it contains the psychological roots of synchronicity. This theory is mainly based on "The archetypes". "These are concentrations of psychic energy, universal in their essence, which manifest as particular themes or motifs that emerge from the unconscious"(Combs and Holland 69). According to Jung, the archetypes have a dramatic influence on conscious experience and behavior (Jung 21). In other words, he believed that the activation of an archetype is what triggers a synchronistic coincidence. I think it is an important suggestion to understand the formation process of coincidences. However, it is not enough to explain the perfect balance between synchronistic events because, archetypes can only be the results of human experiences coming from earlier times and they cannot control themselves. Therefore, there should be a big power to manage them. In this case, this psychological study does not have a clear explanation about the main reason of meaningful coincidences so it is also insufficient.

Beyond the scientific causality idea which is mainly based on physical and material understanding of coincidences or psychological perception and theories about coincidences, I would like to pay more attention to metaphysical understanding of the synchronicity because these scientific approaches cannot suggest any clear and comprehensive explanation about the reason behind them. In this case, I think metaphysical studies have more reasonable approach to synchronistic events. However, it is not also fully satisfying. Therefore, after metaphysics [2] , to validate my claim, I will suggest that the exact deriving power of the synchronicity is religion and I will give examples.

The first thing that I can say about the metaphysical side of synchronicity is it is mainly based on the law of cause and effect. However, it does not have the same meaning which science knows because synchronicity extends this law into all of the complex interconnected web of human life. At this point, the idea is: "All positive and negative energy that we put out returns to us in equal and appropriate measure, as existence echoes back our inner world, sometimes instantly, but more often in our future"(Ishwara). This is the law of balance, which we can see in all around the world. Positive and negative energies are everywhere but they have a very complex relationship. Therefore, in most cases, we cannot explain the exact relationship between the concurrences of events, with no apparent causal connection. At this point, metaphysics are insufficient because the metaphysical explanations about synchronicity are too abstract. Moreover, the source of metaphysics is philosophy so philosophers generally do not have a common belief to explain the source of the synchronicity. However, we should consider about some of the metaphysical approaches about synchronicity such as Ishwara’s, because they indicate some important points for understanding the coincidences.

After evaluation and comparison of some scientific (generally psychological) and metaphysical approaches, it can be seen that they do not have any satisfying and comprehensive explanation about the deriving force of the meaningful coincidences. Therefore, finally I will evaluate the divine religious understanding of synchronicity and I will also demonstrate that it has the simplest and most reasonable explanation about the source of the synchronistic events.

Initially, if we look outside from the window, we can see the amazing harmony of the world. There are too many existing different things and they have many interactions between them but surprisingly, there is no absurdity in these complex interactions. At this level, there should be a manager who controls this entire complex system in the world and this manager should be God who created this entire universe.

God is the creator of the entire universe so he has an absolute power to manage all events in the world. In this case, I would like to explain reflections of God’s absolute power in our lives.

Firstly, God created the world in the best conditions that we can live. Then created us and sent us to the world. Now, we live in the world in a harmony because God is still managing the world and affecting our lives. Therefore, I suggest that there is no random event in the world because God controls these events for a meaningful purpose. In this case, all coincidences are meaningful and these coincidences are being activated by God’s orders.

To understand God’s this control in synchronistic events, we should try to understand God himself. The first thing that I can say, God has a very tidy, just and fair mind and according the law of cause and effect God always perfectly balances everyone’s thoughts, words and deeds with appropriate life experiences, eventually. In this case, some of the best scientists are still trying to understand the secret to the mind of God. At this level, I would like to mention about Maitreya Ishwara’s opinion about the God: "God’s greatest creative challenge and interest – as He is programming every soul with all of the experiences that they require – is the complexity of perfectly balancing all human energy exchanges, between billions of souls over thousands of years"(Ishwara). Ishwara’s suggestion is very clear about God’s balancing power in our lives and I agree with this statement because this allows us to understand the meaning and purpose of coincidences. In order to this perception of synchronistic events, I can simply say that their main deriving and controlling force is religious and beyond this, it is the reflection of God in our lives.

After explaining the main source of the meaningful coincidences is divine religion, I would like to give some meaningful coincidence examples from the Qur’an which is the holy book of one-God-believed Islam religion. First amazing example is the tewafuq [3] amongst the Chapters of the Qur’an, as well as many subtle points related to tewafuq displaying a Divinely-intended arrangement. Another example is the coherence among and within the pages of the Qur’an. The number of the words Allah [4] on any given page is sometimes correlated to the right or left-hand opposing page, or to the backside page ("Qur’an and Tewafuq"). These examples are important because they show us some direct relations between God and the meaningful coincidences. In this case, they are also illuminating for the messages of God to us.

With respect to the examples from the Holy Qur’an and previous explanations, we can discuss the messages of the synchronistic events. Initially, the meaningful coincidences serve for God’s great plan. Therefore, in synchronistic events, there are some warnings to make us aware of the superior power which exists behind the scene. God wants us to see his blessings in our lives and in this way, He plans meaningful coincidences. Therefore, we should think deeply about the coincidences that we face with in our lives and try to understand the message which is coming from the God.

Finally, I would like to indicate that the coincidences in our lives are not random things. They do not occur just because of the chance or simple causality. On the contrary, they have an important purpose to guide our lives and they serve for God’s great plan. In this case, the main source of coincidence is divine religion. Therefore, synchronistic events are not scientifically or psychologically provable things but their meanings and impacts on our lives are very important and considerable. In order to explore the meaning of coincidences, we should think about God’s huge power on this entire universe and then we can understand the general meaning of the synchronicity. In this way, we can also understand the meaning of our lives and we can shape our actions for a great purpose, God’s great plan.