A Primer on Synchronicity, Or Why Your Computer Broke Today
Synchronicity is one of the most important concepts I work with as a super sensitive human. It is an idea that everyone should know about and utilize, but for sensitives it is particularly important because more things throw us out of whack. Synchronicity can help us figure out which such things are doing the damage and which things help us stay “in whack”. If you are sensitive, you are probably naturally highly aware of everything going on around you. Possibly too aware. Hello PTSD. Hello, "I'm shut down and focused on my own inner world because the outer world is too overstimulating". The good news is you are probably really good at remembering stuff and picking up the details, so you'll be really good at recognizing synchronicities.
The idea of synchronicity was popularized by famous psychologist Carl Jung. The official definition is two things that are temporally but acausally connected. What that means is basically something that happens at the same time as something else, but is not connected by the standard laws of physics. I accidentally bump into a lamp and it falls over, not a synchronicity. I act like a dick to my boss and get fired, also not a synchronicity. There is too obvious of a correlation there. But if I break up with my jerk partner and get an unexpected birthday check in the mail from grandma an hour later or even a day later? Voila. Synchronicity City, baby.
Even if you were expecting that check, that is not quite as profound, but still moderately legit. You probably didn't know the day it was coming. It is the timing is important. If you received it before the breakup, or before seriously committing to the idea of the breakup, or the next week after the breakup it tells a different story. Synchronicities tend to reflect most strongly within 24 hours of doing something. Sometimes they are almost instantaneous. One time I was about to email back a news reporter from The Economist agreeing to an interview and a minor earthquake happened just seconds before I was about to push the send button.
Now that brings us to another topic. Synchronicities can be divided into two categories: positive and negative. Obviously, positive synchronicities are positive reflections of our choices and our “energy” and negative synchronicities are negative reflections. The problem is sometimes it is hard to tell which is which. Money is basically always good. Car troubles are basically always bad, but something like an earthquake, one that doesn't destroy anything or particularly frighten you? Well, I'd lean toward the negative because of the potential earthquakes have for destruction, but it could be tricky. Something which is “earth shaking” is not necessarily a bad thing. It could be a punctuation mark alerting you that something major is going on.
We all want things to go well for us, but I'd advise against taking too much of an artistically metaphorical interpretation of things and err on the side that bad shit is usually bad. For example, fires can symbolize creativity, passion, a phoenix rising from the ashes. If your house burned down, it is definitely a chance for you to get a fresh start, but somewhere inside you probably knew you needed one for a long time, and you could have gotten that fresh start WITH your most precious belongings in tact. The fire itself didn't have to happen as some grand life plan. It just so happens that is what it took to get your attention. There were probably a lot of smaller signs that you ignored along the way.
In the case of the reporter from The Economist I had to look at the whole series of other events from the last days to decide that doing the interview was not a good thing because it was around a topic (foraging for plants) that I used to very involved in but had been removed from for some time. Agreeing to the interview would be re-engaging my old self and all the attachments that would come with it. Naturally, because I was primed to take the deeper meaning of things into consideration, I thought over the consequences of my actions, and ended up referring the reporter to someone else instead. It might sound flaky, but if you watch this stuff everyday, you'll begin to see patterns emerge.
Synchronicities are basically just like signs in the sense that they are a form of guidance. Many people believe in signs. Typical “signs” like finding a feather, seeing a particular animal, or number may indeed be synchronicities if they are meaningful to you and seem to repeatedly correlate with circumstances in your world. But synchronicities are happening all around us all of the time. They can't not happen. I'll contradict my knocking over a lamp example by saying on one level everything is a synchronicity. Every single email you get every day is a reflection of something. It isn't like an intelligent hand is rewarding and punishing you for your good or bad deeds here and there. The nudging is constant and need not be personified. Synchronicity is an inescapable, fundamental law. The universe is always reflecting ourselves back to us. Jung came to believe this too. Some New Age authors refer to this as "instant karma".
There tend to be universal synchronicities that I mentioned above, like money and car troubles, that mean the same thing to everyone. There are also highly personal synchronicities. People popping into our lives are great synchronicities to watch for, and the meaning of running into a particular person like an ex is different for everyone depending on what that person represents to them.
However, don't sweat the small stuff, like “ants are biting my feet”, or you will drive yourself crazy. There are generally plenty of larger positive and negative synchronicities to pay attention to and even those can be frustrating and mind-boggling. You may find yourself like the double rainbow guy below shouting, “But what does it mean!!!???”.
So why did your computer break? Because nothing is random. Because something you did dropped your energy enough to manifest the reality in which it stopped working. I don't know what it was. It could have been hanging out with someone who isn't good for you. It could have been eating a food or ingesting a drug your body/soul wasn't happy about. It could have been you were about to search for a meaningless low-wage job when you need to be writing your masterpiece. Infinite reasons. Review your life, make a list, and talk to some friends about it. They may be able to help you see where you are off-center.
I know there are a lot of questions about synchronicity and how it could work which I'll get to, so please subscribe. In future posts I will talk more about specific examples and popular types of synchronicities to watch out for. I'm thinking of making a regular feature called "synchronicity watch", where I pick out examples from non-fiction books I am reading, that the authors may or may not recognize as significant. Do you have a favorite synchronicity? Share it for us in the comments section below.