There are coincidences that forever change our lives. Some say these coincidences are fated. Others say these events are purely an act of chance. But what if there is something in between? What if we ourselves, on an unconscious level, are part of orchestrating these coincidences because we need them?
According to Dr. Bernard Beitman, there are powers in play when meaningful connections are made that are perfectly possible to observe, but that cannot be explained either by religious overtones, or by being the result of chance. In his book Connecting with Coincidence: The New Science for Using Synchronicity and Serendipity in Your Life, Dr. Beitman explores the role of coincidences in our lives, and how understanding them can help us find what we need. Dr. Beitman says it is perfectly possible to observe coincidences in a scientific manner. But to do this we have to move beyond the extremes of seeing them as the result of chance, or as the result of higher powers at work.
I met my present husband Michael on a bus in Peru, going from Cuzco to Puno. This meeting would result in me moving to another continent, change my work and much else. It was the last week of a much-needed vacation. Michael was on a half-year journey through South America. Michael came running last minute before the bus left and sat down beside me for the five-hour bus ride. We talked all the way. There was no question we liked each other, but we parted ways, and that could have been the end of it. For some days I could not stop thinking about the man on the bus. I traveled over to Copacabana in Bolivia, to visit the holy islands of Lake Titicaca.
The day I arrived in Copacabana, Michael came walking down the main street, sun in his face, having gone hiking the whole day. He was coming back to Copacabana on that particular street, just as I stood looking at people passing by. I quickly invited him to join me for dinner. During dinner we found out more about each other. It was like holding up a favorable, funny house mirror: somewhat distorted, but surprisingly familiar. Spiritual interests, outlook on life, favorite authors all lined up as conversation went on.
According to Dr. Beitman, there are several ways to increase meaningful coincidences in our lives: by keeping our minds open to them, and by doing something out of our ordinary routine. Our personal wills also make a big difference. He says our wants and needs help create coincidences, but that our real needs are not something of which we are always conscious. Dr. Beitman has presented the hypothesis that all people have an inborn, brain-related Global Positioning System that draws us towards situations and people that we are looking for.
Observing how our personal, human GPS creates coincidences in our lives can greatly enhance our understanding of how we are part of making things unfold. “It is possible that many people really do know they will meet, but don’t consciously know that they know,” Dr. Beitman says.
Regardless how much we enhance our chances for coincidence, and use our inherent ability to find what we need, there is also one more vital element: we have to grab the chance. There was a chance of a lifetime that Michael and I would sit beside each other on that bus from Cuzco to Puno. Somewhat overwhelmed, I did not grab that opportunity. Our human GPS was well functioning however, and drew us together once again, in another country, some days later. That time I did not let opportunity slip.
Perhaps it was neither chance nor fate that created the coincidence of Michael and I meeting. It could have been something inherited in us, a yet unexplained but totally natural inner guidance that made us seek out the right place and the right time. When it comes to understanding meaningful connections of coincidence, we are but at the frontier of a new science. At this point in time, I am simply thankful it worked.
Find out more about Dr. Beitman and Coincidences at his website: Coincider.com