The recent clever poster that has made its way around the Internet reads: “So Dick Clark dies in the year we aren’t supposed to have a New Year’s Eve? Well played Mayans, well played.” It’s quite a humorous observation, but it is one that we just laugh off. It is a coincidence that the person who is most known for ushering in the New Year dies in the one year out of five thousand some odd years that the world is, according to lore, supposed to end. But is it a coincidence? Probably. Yet, there are numerous other things that happen in life, prompting us to consider the reality of coincidence. Coincidences flourish, but are these coincidences just two unlikely events that occur in unison as to produce a unique result, or do they have deeper meaning?
For famed psychiatrist Carl Jung, meaningful coincidences have a name: synchronicity. Since Jung coined the term, people have explored the idea of synchronicity in their own lives and scientists have also examined the concept. Could coincidences be something more than what appears on the surface? The Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research Laboratory conducted studies that demonstrate connections between events that occurred in the world such as 9/11, and states of consciousness. Of course, most of us do not need scientific proof to know that coincidences have meaning.
Look at your own life. Do you notice coincidences often? Do you notice signs in your daily life that seem to be leading you somewhere? You do experience coincidences in your life, but whether you notice them is often attached to your connection to your environment, and how well you know yourself. Awareness and living in the present is key to noticing when synchronous events occur, something that is quite intriguing and enjoyable. The reason why people like the Dick Clark poster so much is because it brings a spark of recognition. Yes, coincidences are all around us. We just have to keep our eyes open.