C.G.Jung
Synchronicity

An Acausal Connecting Principle
The Collected Works of C.G. Jung,
Volume 8, Bollingen Series XX
Princeton University Press 1973



Jung Synchronicity3
6 The experimental method of enquiry aims at establishing regular events which can be repeated. Consequently, unique or rare events are ruled out of account. Moreover, the experiment imposes limiting conditions on nature, for its aim is to force her to give answers to questions devised by man. Every answer of nature is therefore more or less influenced by the kind of question asked, and the result is always a hybrid product. The so-called “
scientific view of the world” based on this can hardly be anything more than a psychologically biased partial view which misses out all those by no means unimportant aspects that cannot be grasped statistically.

11 Here I should like to draw attention to a treatise of Schopenhauer’s, “On the apparent design in the fate of the individual”, which originally stood godfather to the views I'm now developing.. It deals with the “simultaneity of the causally unconnected, which we call “chance”. Schopenhauer illustrates this simultaneity:
12 Schopenhauer: “All events in a man's life would accordingly stand in two fundamentally different kinds of connection: firstly, in
the objective, causal connection of the natural process; secondly, in a subjective connection which exists only in relation to the individual who experiences it, and which is thus as subjective as his own dreams….That both kinds of connection exists simultaneously, and the selfsame event, although linking two totally different chains, nevertheless falls into place in both, so that the fate of one individual invariably fits the fate of the other, and each is the hero of his own drama while simultaneously figuring in a drama foreign to him - this is something that surpasses our powers of comprehension, and can only be conceived as possible by virtue of the most wonderful preestablished harmony”.
In his view “the subject of the great dream of life…is but one”, the transcendental
Will, the prima causa, from which all causal chains radiate and, because of the circular parallels, stand to one another in a meaningful relationship of simultaneity.Schopenhauer believed in the absolute determinism of the natural process and furthermore in a first cause. There is nothing to warrant either assumption. The first cause is a philosophical mythologem which is only credible when it appears in the form of the old paradox (“to be/not to be”), as unity and multiplicity at once.

20 In man's original view of the world (20) as we find it among primitives, space and time have a very precarious existence. They become “fixed” concepts only in the course of his mental development, thanks largely to the introduction of measurement. In themselves, space and time consist of nothing. They are hypostatised concepts born of the discrimination activity of the conscious mind, and they form the indispensable co-ordinates for describing the behaviour of bodies in motion. They are, therefore, essentially psychic in origin, which is probably the reason that impelled Kant to regard them as apriori categories.
But
if space and time are only apparently properties of bodies in motion and are created by the intellectual needs of the observer, then their relativization by psychic conditions is no longer a matter for astonishment but is brought within the bounds of possibility.This possibility presents itself when the psyche observes not external bodies, but itself.

29 An unexpected content which is directly or indirectly connected with some objective external event coincides with the ordinary psychic state: this is what I call synchronicity, and I maintain that we are dealing with exactly the same category of events whether their objectivity appear separated from my consciousness in space are in time…
Space and time, the conceptual coordinates of bodies in motion, are probably at bottom one and the same (which is why we speak of a long or short „space of time“. Synchronicity in space can equally well be conceived as perception in time, but remarkably enough it is not so easy to understand synchronicity in time as spatial, for we cannot imagine any space in which future events are objectively present and could be experienced as such through a reduction of this spatial distance since experience has shown that under certain conditions space and time can be reduced almost to zero, causality disappears along with them, because causality is bound up with the existence of space and time and physical changes, and consists essentially in the succession of cause-and-effect.
For this reason synchronistic phenomena cannot in principle be associated with any conceptions of causality. Hence the interconnection of meaningfully coincident factors must necessarily be thought of as acausal“ (Jung-Synchronicity28-29).

Boe: Cambray20:Jung is speaking here about acausal coincident phenomena that are meaningfully linked, but the collapse of space time together with the disappearance of the principle of causality is remarkably congruent with the best theories in physics for the origins of the universe. The point in this is to try and articulate what Jung may be reaching for with his theory of synchronicity.

Boe: the psychoid archetype – ordering principle – numbers vgl. Robertson

It is as if at the deepest level he is finding a place for the psyche at the origins of the universe through the psychoid archetype. This is not an intelligent design argument but an indication that the universe is as permeated with psyche as it is with space, time, and matter; that synchronicities provide traces of an original undifferentiated state. In such a cosmogony I suggest Jung is leading us to see psyche as another of the potentials inherent in the singularity.

Boe: information!! vgl. Peirce Firstness - emergence

20 As the universe expands from the primordial singularity and cools, matter is separated from energy yet can interact with it

21(for example, as radiation) and space-time emerges; patterns begin to take shape and become substantial, first in the form of particles, which make up matter, then with greater cooling and expansion into clouds, which becomes stellar and galactic nurseries from which eventually the patterns that lead to life emerge and so on to consciousness, that is, patterns with the potential to form psyche and hold meaning. That Jung recognised such potentials within the context of evolution on Earth is evident from his March 1959 letter to Erich Neumann:
„In this case of chance, synchronistic phenomena were probably at work, operating both with and against the known laws of nature to produce, in archetypal moments, synthesis which appeared to us miraculous... This presupposes not only an all-pervading, latent meaning which can be recognised by consciousness, but during that preconscious time, a psychoid process with which a physical event meaningfully coincides. Here the meaning cannot be recognised because there is as yet no consciousness“.

Jung Synchronicity34
35 Judgement must therefore rely much more on
the irrational functions of consciousness, that is on sensation (the “sense du reel”) and intuition (perception by means of subliminal contents).
The I Ching, which we can well call the experimental foundation of classical Chinese philosophy, is one of the oldest known methods for
grasping a situation as a whole and thus placing the detail against the cosmic background - the interplay of Yin and Yang.
Boe: Number - Zero
40 Mantic procedures: The method best adapted to the nature of chance is the numerical method. Since the remotest times men have used numbers to establish meaningful coincidences, that is, coincidences that can be interpreted.
There is something peculiar, one might even say mysterious, about numbers. They have never been entirely robbed of their numinous aura. If, so a textbook of mathematics tells us, a group of objects is deprived of every single one of its properties or characteristics there still remains, at the end, it's number, which seems to indicate that number is something irreducible.
(I am not concerned here with the logic of this mathematical argument, but only with it is psychology!) The sequence of natural numbers turns out to be unexpectedly more than the mere stringing together of identical units: it contains the whole of mathematics and everything yet to be discovered in this field.
Number, therefore, is in one sense an unpredictable entity.
The most elementary quality about an object is whether it is one or many. Number helps more than anything else to bring order into the chaos of appearances. It is the predestined instrument for creating order, or for apprehending an already existing, but still unknown, regular rearrangement or “orderedness”.
It may well be the most primitive element of order in the human mind, seeing that the numbers 1 to 4 occurred with the greatest frequency and have the widest incidence. In other words, primitive patterns of order are mostly triads or tetrads. That numbers have an archetypal foundation is not, by the way, the conjecture of mine but of certain mathematicians. Hence it is not such an audacious conclusion after all if we define number psychologically as an archetype of order which has become conscious.
Boe: an archetype of order which has become conscious.
41
Remarkably enough, the psychic images of wholeness which spontaneously produced by the unconscious, the symbols of the self in mandala form, also have a mathematical structure.

Jung Synchronicity69
Chapter 3: Forrunners of the idea of Synchronicity

70 In Chinese philosophy one of the oldest and most central ideas is that of Tao, which the Jesuits translated as “God”. But that is correct only for the Western way of thinking. Richard Wilhelm brilliantly interprets it as “meaning” (Sinn). The concept of Tao pervades the whole philosophical full of China. Causality occupies this paramount position with us, but it acquired its importance only in the course of the last two centuries, thanks to the levelling influence on the statistical method on the one hand and the unparalleled success of the natural sciences on the other, which brought the metaphysical view of the world into disrepute.

Laozi gives the following description of Tao – TaoTeChing 25

Representations of the mystery
There was something undefined and complete, coming into existence before Heaven and Earth. How still it was and formless, standing alone, and undergoing no change, reaching everywhere and in no danger (of being exhausted)!
It may be regarded as the Mother of all things.
I do not know its name,
and I give it the designation of the Dao (the Way or Course).
Making an effort (further) to give it a name I call it The Great.
Great, it passes on (in constant flow). Passing on, it becomes remote.
Having become remote, it returns.
Therefore the Dao is great; Heaven is great; Earth is great; and the (sage) king is also great. In the universe there are four that are great, and the (sage) king is one of them. Man takes his law from the Earth; the Earth takes its law from Heaven; Heaven takes its law from the Dao. The law of the Dao is its being what it is.
71 Wilhelm describes it as "a borderline conception lying at the extreme edges of the world of appearances". In it, the opposites " cancel out in nondiscrimination", but still potentially present.

Jung Synchronicity89
90 The synchronicity principle possesses properties that may help to clear up the body-soul problem. Above all it is the fact of causeless order, or rather, of meaningful orderedness, that may throw light on psychophysical parallelism.
The "absolute knowledge" which is characteristic of synchronistic phenomena, a knowledge not mediated by the sense organs, supports the hypotheses of a self-subsistant meaning, or even expresses its existence.
Such a form of existence can only be transcendental, since, as the knowledge of future or spatially distant events shows, it is
contained in a psychically relative space and time, that is to say in an irrepresentable space-time continuum.
96 Synchronicity is not a philosophical view but an empirical concept which postulates an intellectually necessary principle. This cannot be called either matterialism or metaphysics.
No serious investigator would assert that the nature of what is observed to exist, and of that which observes, namely the psyche, are known and recognised quantities. If the latest conclusions of science are coming nearer and nearer to
a unitary idea of being, characterised by space and time on the one hand and by causality and synchronicity on the other, that has nothing to do with materialism. Rather it seems to show that there is some possibility of getting rid of the incommensurability between the observed and the Observer. The result, in that case, would be a unity of being which would have to be expressed in terms of a new conceptual language….
Boe: a new conceptual language - Difference-Theory (GSB) , Systemstheory (Luhmann, Fuchs)

99 It is difficult to divest conceptual language of its causalistic colouring. Thus the word “underlying” despite its causalistic connotation, does not refer to anything causal, but simply to an (100) existing quality, an irreducible contingency which is “Just-so”. The meaningful coincidence or equivalents of the psychic and physical state that have no causal relationship to one another means, in general terms, that it is a modality without a cause, an “acausal orderedness”.
The question now arises whether our definition of synchronicity with reference to the equivalence of psychic and physical processes is capable of expansion, or rather, requires expansion. This requirement seems to force itself on us when we consider the above, wider conception of synchronicity as an "acausal orderedness". Into this category come all "acts of creation", a priori factors such as the properties of natural numbers, the discontinuities of modern physics, etc.

Boe: synchronicity = "acausal orderedness" = all "acts of creation"


Boe: Beobachtung Dritter Ordnung


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