According to Carl Jung, a synchronicity is a meaningful coincidence between events not causally connected on the surface. Jung states they are connected below the surface, and for a reason that the unconscious and its archetypes are trying to communicate. A synchronicity is personal, generally involving relatively few people. If a personal synchronicity is possible, why not a shared or group synchronicity? A group synchronicity would involve a community.
Here’s a good example of a group synchronicity: the Buddha beehive. The Buddha beehive is not a beehive at all, but judging from the published photograph, does look somewhat like a Buddha. The beehive is actually a paper wasp nest. A Rochester Minnesota newspaper reported on the story. According to the Post-Bulletin dated 11/21/2008, a wasp nest formed over the eve to the entrance of a Cambodian Buddhist community temple building. Experts stated that nests had built up over a period of at least several years.
Now, I have seen a large number of paper wasp nests, and this one is clearly unusual. It is unusual because of its large size and unique shape — open cell wasp nests are usually semi-circular in shape. It is unusual because paper wasps die come winter, except for the queens which winter underground and do not return to same nesting site the following year. The nests are damaged in the winter months, and the old nest sites are not reused.
Buddhists preach tolerance and nonviolence toward all sentient beings, including wasps mistaken for bees. I hope the Cambodian Buddhists continued to view their wasps as bees, which are the givers of honey. What cannot be ignored, in my opinion, is that this wasp nest grew to resemble a seated Buddha on a Buddhist temple. Nonviolence is only part of the story. The rest might be called a group synchronicity, an unlikely manifestation of the compassionate intent of the temple, having grown out of a configuration of inner events or beliefs made physical.
The creation of events
Sometimes events flow harmoniously and without “a wrinkle,” so to speak, and all we see is the harmonious outcome. Sometimes events involve a convergence of energy that leaves a mirror or indication of the event, such as the Buddha beehive.
When events are out of balance, it is possible that the force of harmony will beckon potential. In these cases, the spirit or archetypes of that force may become manifest. In dreams, it may be a creature demanding attention (one that cannot be ignored). Jung had a saying: if one is listening as the Self is knocking at the door, and answers, the archetype (messenger) is most polite. However, if one ignores the polite knocking, then the messenger begins to pound, and eventually will knock the door down. This can be quite frightening, and may be experienced as a nightmare.
According to Jung, the phenomenon of UFOs in the 1950s was a case of the group’s unconscious psyche pounding at the door with a shared symbolic vision. Jung didn’t conclude that every UFO report was a part of this particular cluster of visions, just those that had similar details and symbolic relevance. Jung stated that the symbolic message relayed the dangers of the nuclear age and a desire for a heavenly or spiritual solution. For Jung, archetypes have an autonomous reality, and he concluded that those UFOs were real material phenomena.
The creation of events is happening all the time. Although much of what manifests in physical reality is mediated through wills and powers separate from humans, humans still participate.
Jane Robert’s Seth tells us these sorts of things go on all the time with more conventional outcomes. To paraphrase just a bit: communities of humankind operate psychologically like individuals. For example, if there is repression of built-up emotion, the emotion will find a way to escape and act out as behavior. With communities, repressed emotion may find a way to escape as a mass event. An event channeling repressed anger could manifest as conflict or war. But we’ll take it further. The energy could manifest as a thunderstorm or even a natural disaster. In the latter, Nature is taking up the latent energy and transforming it into event. If this is true, then the words of a Gandhi, Martin Luther King, or Einstein become even more significant. To remove participation in violence does not mean to ignore violence, but to embrace nonviolence.
Our individual quest is to assume responsibility for how our consciousness participants in the streaming of events, without the grandiose or inflated expectation that we can change the world at our personal command. But neither is our participation to be undervalued or scorned. We can make a difference when our agreements generate will, when collective consciousness is deeply rooted with intentional participation. We can make a difference when we speak the language of Soul, when our hearts are open to the streams of Spirit. We can make a difference when we develop a spiritual and/or shamanic relationship with the world in which we interact – human interest communing with spirits of Nature and the unseen worlds that inform us.
When we succeed in elevating or integrating our own consciousness, the seeds of that growth are scattered in the ether, impregnating potential. We truly are connected. A Buddha walks across a room, and the universe gently vibrates with each footfall (if even for a suspended moment). A group of practitioners dance their spirit and pray from their Soul, and harmonious outcomes begin to gestate. We do not know what is possible until we purge our shadows and make a linking gesture through the better parts of our nature.