Browse Definitions:
Definition

synchronicity

Synchronicity is a concept developed by psychologist Carl Jung to describe a perceived meaningful coincidence. Jung described synchronicity as an "acausal connecting principle" in which events, both large and small, in the external world might align to the experience of the individual, perhaps mirroring or echoing personal concerns or thoughts. For example, while one of Jung's analysands described a dream about a scarab, a scarab-like beetle flew into the room. Because the scarab is an Egyptian symbol of rebirth, Jung felt that the coincidence was meant to underline the woman's need to escape an over-attachment to rationalism. Most people experience surprising coincidences from time to time. For example, you might encounter a reference to some obscure event in history for the first time and then see several unrelated references to the same event soon afterwards.

In his most famous description of synchronicity, Jung told a story about a man named Monsieur Deschamps and plum pudding. Deschamps' neighbor, Monsieur de Fontgibu, gave him plum pudding. In Paris ten years later, Deschamps orders plum pudding in a restaurant but discovers that the last serving was sold to de Fontgibu, who is unexpectedly in town and at that same restaurant. Years later, Deschamps is once again offered plum pudding at a social gathering. As Deschamps tells the gathering about the earlier coincidences, he is shocked to see de Fontgibu come in the door.

Although some scientists see potential evidence of synchronicity in areas of research such as quantum theory , chaos theory , and fractal geometry, the concept is not testable by any current scientific method. Skeptics, such as Robert Todd Carroll of the Skeptic's Dictionary, argue that the perception of synchronicity is better explained as apophenia , which is the human tendency to seek and perceive connections between unrelated phenomena.

The concept of synchronicity is somewhat related to the concept of serendipity .

This was last updated in September 2010

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

SearchSecurity

  • Web application firewall (WAF)

    A Web application firewall (WAF) is a firewall that monitors, filters or blocks traffic to and from a Web application. WAFs are ...

  • MD5

    The MD5 hashing algorithm is a one-way cryptographic function that accepts a message of any length as input and returns as output...

  • identity theft

    Identity theft, also known as identity fraud, is a crime in which an imposter obtains key pieces of personally identifiable ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

  • mass notification system (MNS)

    A mass notification system is a platform that sends one-way messages to inform employees and the public of an emergency.

  • disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)

    One approach to a strong disaster recovery plan is DRaaS, where companies offload data replication and restoration ...

SearchStorage

  • secondary storage

    Secondary storage is used to protect inactive data written from a primary storage array to a nonvolatile tier of disk, flash or ...

  • VRAM (video ram)

    VRAM (video RAM) is a reference to any type of random access memory (RAM) used to store image data for a computer display.

  • ZFS

    ZFS is a local file system and logical volume manager created by Sun Microsystems to control the placement, storage and retrieval...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID)

    SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID) is a methodology commonly used to protect data by distributing redundant data blocks across ...

  • Tier 0

    Tier 0 (tier zero) is a level of data storage that is faster, and perhaps more expensive, than any other level in the storage ...

  • PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive)

    A PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive) is a high-speed expansion card that attaches a computer to its peripherals.

SearchCloudStorage

  • RESTful API

    A RESTful application program interface breaks down a transaction to create a series of small modules, each of which addresses an...

  • cloud storage infrastructure

    Cloud storage infrastructure is the hardware and software framework that supports the computing requirements of a private or ...

  • Zadara VPSA and ZIOS

    Zadara Storage provides block, file or object storage with varying levels of compute and capacity through its ZIOS and VPSA ...

Close