I’ve been reading more than usual, focusing on books that look impressive on the shelf, but haven’t been touched for decades, or never touched at all.
I’ve always had a habit of gathering and hoarding information in the forms of books, journals, smart people magazines, and links to lectures on YouTube. It’s been “a thing” with me. It eventually got so bad, I stopped the subscriptions despite the risk of missing some obscure but important bit of wisdom. The expense only led to piles upon piles of periodicals in my living room, shouting at me every time I walked in the door, “When are you going to read me?”
So, given the current state of global affairs and my lessening concerns about hitting self-imposed deadlines, I decided to dive in and read some “classics.”
It’s been interesting. What do you think happens to a productivity addict when they’re not up against a deadline to complete an apparently insurmountable task? In other words, what happens if a productivity addict has no heroic feat to achieve that will once again prove their value and worth to the rest of the world?
They get a little blue … a little lethargic … and a lot sleepy.
That’s me lately.
But … there has been an unexpected discovery!
While writing an article on Purpose, I returned to Ernest Becker’s Pulitzer Prize winning book, The Denial of Death, a book that then led me to start reading Carl Jung’s book, Synchronicity.
Synchronicity is defined by Jung as:
A meaningful coincidence of two or more events, where something other than the probability of chance is involved.
There’s a lot to the concept, but this is only a short post, so I’ll make my point and encourage you to read the book yourself. In Synchronicity, Jung presents the experiments carried out by Professor J.B. Rhine who conducted statistical analysis of psychokinetic experiments. They concluded a number of (1) things:
- The psyche can, to some extent, eliminate the space factor.
- The time experiment proves that the time factor (at any rate, in the dimension of the future) can become psychically relative.
- Neither energy (transmission of force) nor the law of causality hold.
- Where there is no possibility whatever of a causal explanation, we must assume provisionally that improbable accidents of an acausal nature – that is, meaningful coincidences – have entered the picture.
A little spooky, but very cool.
Basically, the psyche is susceptible to knowing or gaining knowledge … and affecting outcomes … outside of the causal time and space continuum.
Yet, that’s not all. The main ingredient to positive outcomes appeared to be a mode of faith and optimism. In fact, in some of Rhine’s experiments involving multiple attempts at simple ESP experiments, they noted that the number of “hits” scored dropped with the mood of the subject, leading them to conclude …
(1) An initial mood of faith and optimism makes for good results.
Here’s the point:
We’re in a race. The course changes, the instability in our cities, the mixed messages regarding the objectives of the lockdowns … these, combined, make for a nonlinear journey back to a predictable and safe state of stability where we can again freely pursue our dreams and carry out our responsibilities. It’s difficult to endure, but …
Endurance is fueled by hope. It’s important to have “something to look forward to.” Forward momentum, especially in how we look at our lives, plays a huge role in sustaining us through difficult seasons. Expectations, anticipation, assuming the good … all of these are essential to our capacity to endure right now.
Look … we’re in a battle. We need to stay in the fight. If Jung and Rhines were correct, it’s worth thinking about.
 Jung, C. G.. Synchronicity (Bollingen Series XX: The Collected Works of C. G. Jung, Volume 8) (p. 103, p. 108). Princeton University Press. Kindle Edition.