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LostInParadise's avatar

Is it normal to experience synchronicity on a regular basis?

Asked by LostInParadise (17723 points ) February 26th, 2014

I know that Jung’s theory of synchronicity is nonsense, but I find myself experiencing it at a rate of at least once every few weeks. It is never about anything profound, just two related but unlinked events, like thinking about something I rarely think about and then reading about it shortly afterwards.

I understand that there are alternative explanations. For example, what causes me to think of something might be something that I heard on the radio but quickly forget about, at least on a conscious level. I also understand that there are very large numbers of opportunities for related unlinked events to occur by pure coincidence, so it would be unusual if such coincidences never occurred.

I have tried a few times to test for synchronicity. I realize I am thinking about something I have not thought of in a while and then test to see if anything linked to it occurs. Results so far have all been negative.

I am a true card carrying skeptic and am a little embarrassed to talk about synchronicity, but it would be comforting to know that others have a similar experience.

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10 Answers

janbb's avatar

My Ex and I often used to note experiences like that. Think of something or someone – wonder why you hadn’t seen that actor’s name in a while – and then within a day or two, another reference would pop up. Or you learn a new concept and then a totally different reference to it appears. Happened to us a lot.

zenvelo's avatar

It seems to be happening in my life quite a bit. I attribute it to being much more present and mindful and aware, rather than a sudden increase in occurrence.

Coloma's avatar

I agree with @zenvelo
I went through a lengthy phases of experiencing unusual sychronicity some years ago, now I have digressed due to stress and am not “seeing” the way I used to when I was in full self actualization mode.

thorninmud's avatar

If you haven’t listened to this Radiolab story, I think you’ll find it very interesting.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I read about a great example somewhere. I don’t remember the source, sorry.
The guy was walking in the train station and singing to himself “Gloria, Gloria, I think they’ve got your number…” He had not thought of that song in years! Maybe decades. He was standing in line to go through a turnstile and heard someone singing that very same song!!! What are the odds?!?! The cosmic oneness working on like minds!!! On the way home, as he was leaving the station, he saw a huge add for some cosmetic brand called Gloria. After I read that story I, too, was singing “Gloria, Gloria, ...”
And now you are. :-)

KNOWITALL's avatar

I agree with @zenvelo but I also don’t discount a psychic or 3rd eye ‘wink’...lol

flutherother's avatar

The mind looks for patterns and with so many events continually taking place it isn’t surprising than some events appear linked in a non causal way. I haven’t noticed it much in my life though I have had one or two dreams that corresponded with real life and I regularly notice connections between people’s surnames and what they do.

downtide's avatar

@LuckyGuy all that proves is that both guys (who were singing the song) had passed by that advertising poster before and noticed it only on a subconscious level.

The trouble with synchronicity is that it’s only possible to measure the positive occurrences. How on earth can you measure the number of times it doesn’t happen, with every single thought you have every day?

It’s like when people notice occurrences of significant numbers like 11:11 – they only notice them because they mean something already. They don’t count that they saw other insignificant numbers many times more frequently.

janbb's avatar

@downtide Yes, the Ex and I had discussed that explanation as well.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@downtide I agree. In that particular case the person actually saw the cause of the seemingly miraculous synchronicity. .We are exposed to so many stimuli we often cannot tell what causes a synchronous event.
Like evolution, we only see the successful examples The unsuccessful life forms become extinct as often as ships passing in the night.

I’m still singing that darn song “Gloria” by the way..

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