Synchronicity: simultaneous occurrence of like events that seem random but may also signal cosmic coordination.
My dear friend and colleague Susan Bono and I are keeping synchronicity journals. As we’ve learned with dream journals and gratitude journals, we expect the synchronicity journals will increase our awareness of synchronous events. It’s a way to monitor what the universe is trying to tell us about life, love, and writing.
Here are a few recent entries from my synchronicity journal:
1. Driving home from work, listening to a jazz station on the car radio, I heard the pianist and composer George Cables announce the station identification. I thought, perhaps they’ll play his wonderful “Helen’s Song,” a tune I learned in a remarkable, music-filled time of my life. In the next moment, “Helen’s Song” came on.
2. While working on my novel, Junction, Utah, during the first days of my residency in Sitka, Alaska, last fall, I also read voraciously. Much of the reading material that came to me simply happened to be part of my hosts’ library. The first book I read in residency (actually re-read after decades) was Margaret Craven’s I Heard the Owl Call My Name, a beautiful book from the 1960s about Kwakiutl villages in British Columbia and a missionary who goes to live and serve among them. I
In Sitka, I read Owl, wrote fiction for a month while surrounded by forests and waters, then finished my residency with a second reading of Owl. The book moved me as it had in the 1960s; I was especially moved the second time.
Recently while in Glen Ellen for lunch, I was musing that I’d love Junction to be as beautiful and affecting as Owl. I stopped at the book exchange shelves at Jack London Village–there was Owl among the romance novels and how-to-get-rich books. I picked it up for yet another read.
3. Rose and I were leaving yoga class last Saturday morning; she was telling me about two different Zachs she knew who’d dated the same young woman; we stopped at the art store where the staff were talking about yet a third Zach.
4. I was thinking about my friend Susan, who moved out of the north bay area a few years ago. Musing about the courage she’d shown in radically changing her life, I wondered how she was doing. Simultaneously an email came in from her (she rarely sends them as keyboards present a problem). She’d attached a photo of this lovely ice bubble–a whimsical, joyful creation that seemed to say, “Susan’s doing very well indeed.”
Carl Jung, father of synchronicity, would know how to interpret these little events better than I can yet. But in observing and recording them, I’m learning more about how often they occur–probably as often as I’m willing to see them.