When we notice synchronicity in our lives, it is an affirmation and a reminder of the true nature of Reality; of the Self in whom all exists, and who paradoxically exists in all. Sync is always there because we live in a self-aware universe. The universe is Shakti, the Goddess, the body of Shiva, the Play of Consciousness. When we stop and take note of the 'coincidences' that occur around us all the time, it tends to automatically promote self enquiry (ātma vicāra), the question and subsequent contemplation of, "Who am I?". It reminds us that there is more than meets the eye; to not become lazy in our thinking; to constantly remember the Self. We perceive our existence as separate individuals only because of mental conditioning; i.e. out of habit. If we have this attitude toward synchronicity, we are promoting the habit of perceiving unity. Incidentally, I mentioned the word 'coincidence' above. It is worth noting that, whenever I use that word, my Guru says, "There are no coincidences!".Nothing in existence is fundamentally divisible of separate. All things and events are part of an inseparable union. Synchronicity happens when we notice the bleed-through from one seemingly separate thing into another -- or when we, for a brief moment, move beyond the mind's divisions of the world. -- Jake Kotze
I no longer require proof to accept what has been stated above. But there were some instances, along my spiritual path in particular, that really made me stop and acknowledge that I was immersed in something much bigger and much more intelligent than myself. I still notice synchronicity all the time. It has become so common place for so long, I almost don't give it a second thought anymore. But I will use this blog to document and share some of my experiences with Sync for the sake of those who might be wondering, "How can you believe this stuff?"
Applicability to the World at Large
I recently attended and delivered a presentation at the 2014 Olympia Sync Summit, which I discuss in detail HERE. I had a great time, but one of the things I wondered is, "Huh, I wonder why all these Sync heads are SOooooooo into this stuff." So I spent a lot of time thinking about this and re-evaluating what Sync means to me. In addition to the reasons I mentioned above, I was able to draw some other meaningful conclusions as well.
Synchronicity essentially boils down to pattern. The study of synchronicity is simply the noticing of how these patterns occur in our lives. Scott Onstott summed it up very well at the Summit when, addressing the massive amount of examples of numeric motifs encoded into the whole of reality that he had just used to completely blow all of our minds, he said, "This suggests that the universe is patterned by a higher Consciousness." I am quoting from memory here, but this sums up the gist of his statement anyway.
Without delving deeply (at all) into the matter, even the most superficial study of music theory quickly reveals that the subject is all about pattern. Music consists of patterns. The notes that a piece of music is composed of are determined by pattern. The particular instrument, the material that it is made of, and the dimensions of the instrument are just a few of the variables that determine the tonal quality of a particular note. How those individual instruments interact in the context of a particular piece of music is an example of pattern. Each musical phrase contained within that piece of music is determined by chords, scales, modes, progressions, etc. Music is simply a rich tapestry of patterns, expressed via the medium of sound.
Some of the most influential and arguably the best musicians of all time have been accomplished occultists. This is no coincidence (there's that word again). Let's take a moment to examine what an occultist is. "Occult" simply means "secret" or "hidden". A Swami is technically an occultist because he presumably has some degree of insight into the "Great Mystery". If he (or she) does not, it is at least something he is actively pursuing. A magician is an occultist because he has somehow become aware of repeating motifs that pattern the universe. By grouping together elements who have some meaningful (albeit hidden) relationship, and which also relate to his goal, his intention is strengthened, magnified, and sent into the universe. Since we live on a sphere (or perhaps a toroid as some have speculated), whatever we put out is destined to return to us. To become a magician is to simply make that relationship of cause-and-effect more conscious, allowing us to better nurture the conditions that will foster the desired outcome. One prop that has long been used toward that end is the use of correspondences. Correspondences are determined by examining the patterns underlying diverse phenomena and taking note of where the patterns in question exhibit a harmonious overlap. For example, the low E string on a guitar sounds the same note as the high E string, just an octave lower. What dictates the note is the waveform of the sound. At certain intervals, as the waveform becomes either longer or shorter, the not will repeat itself at either a higher or lower pitch. If we follow the waveform out of the realm of sound, we can further ascertain colors and smells, for example, that resonate harmoniously with the particular note in question. Thus, correspondences are a tool that the magician can make use of to completely immerse his sensual experience in that which harmoniously resonates with his goal. Certain points in time and space, constellations, archetypal figures, etc., all have their particular correspondences as well. We're only scratching the surface here. Everything that exists is interrelated in this way. My goal is simply to make the concept itself clear. Synchronicity is simply the act of taking notice when these correspondences reveal themselves. Perhaps now it is starting to become clear how Sync is not only a real thing, but practical as well (at least in some sense).
But, as I hinted earlier in discussing music, these sorts of connections aren't the exclusive domain of magical ritual as the average person conceives it (as if there is anything that isn't just that). In addition to music, all art relies on these connections. Its ability to translate these connections into something visceral is the sole appeal of art. Technological advances fall squarely within the dominion of these connections. What is technology other than an icon of man's harnessing nature and directing it toward his will? Even when we speak and write, we are making use of patterns and, in the case of writing, their symbols. According to scripture, language itself exists on some archetypal plane as the very embodiment of duality itself, prior to its temporal manifestation. Its use by man (in varied form), by this reasoning, is simply due to some innate ability to reflect this most primal of patterns.
In short, we are all magical creatures and we are all manipulators of this patterned universe of ours inone way or another, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Each of us is a magician in his or her own right. As interconnected as we all are -- to each other, to dimensions not ordinarily perceived, and to this earth we find ourselves upon -- it behooves us to ask what we want our net impact to be; to engage consciously in our relationship with ourself (because that's all that all this is at the end of the day isn't it?).
For me, the answer is that I want to leave this place better than I found it. My approach to this is twofold. In my capacity as a Swami, I guide those who ask for my help toward the firsthand experience of the most fundamental Self; the experience of Oneness only. It is really the Grace of my Guru that does this, but I have been empowered to serve as an instrument toward this end. At any rate, to help facilitate this realization is the highest good I can possibly do for anybody at the individual level. I also continue to engage in the work of remaining permanently in the full awareness of Self, myself. It also follows that one who sees everybody equally as the Self is quite naturally going to have a positive effect on everyone else they encounter. This is powerful work and I am honored to be able to play a role in it.
In the above approach, the focus is primarily inward. In terms of directing my energy outward in some meaningful way, I have found a champion in Permaculture. I submitted my final project for a Permaculture Design Certificate course right before leaving for the Sync Summit. I should be receiving my certificate soon. The ethics of Permaculture are:
- Earth Care
- People Care
- Return of Surplus
Incidentally, these values are very much in keeping with the values of the Vedas of ancient India.
At any rate, Permaculture is essentially the application of specific strategies to the design of any human settlement, or the site of any human activity for that matter, which promote the harmonious interaction of the people involved with the land. It hinges upon the recognition of the patterns that have been left upon the land by the cosmic forces which have shaped it. Once sufficient information has been gleaned from said patterns, the next consideration is how to arrange the individual elements needed to meet the needs of the people occupying the space, in relation to both the patterns observed and to each other, in such a way that maximum productivity, sustainability, and ease of maintenance are promoted.
For me, the most exciting application is the re-hydration and vegetation of arid or degraded landscape. Where it might otherwise take in excess of hundreds of years for an area to evolve into a mature forest, the Permaculturist can fast-track forest succession, bringing that time down to four or five years. That is, four or five years to the establishment of the forest; that is, until everything is well enough established, that you could walk away and there would be no stopping it. Generally speaking, you're looking at a little upwards of a decade 'til full maturity. Oh, and did I mention that, since you're the one designing the thing, it can totally be a food forest!?
If the Biblical story of the Garden of Eden is an allegory for the descent of Spirit into matter and apparent separation, sādhana (spiritual practice) is the way back. Thus, the knowledge of good and evil (duality) is transcended and the only thing remaining is the Knowledge of Love, of Oneness, of Bliss. Here in this hell-on-earth realm, we see the fruit of the discursive thought of the masses clearly manifest. Yet, I firmly believe that we can turn the base metal of individuality and that of scorched earth, into Gold through the inner work of sādhana and the outer work of Permaculture. We can literally re-plant the Garden of Eden here on Earth as well. Geoff Lawton says, "Permaculture is revolution disguised as a garden." I have only scratched the surface here but, if you have about an hour-and-a-half, you can learn a lot more about the subject from this video of Geoff Lawton below.