Depth Psychology Blog  -  02 Mar 2013 11:06 AM | Bonnie Bright 

  I liked Bonnie Bright´s comments about this book,  in particular:

"Tarnas stresses that Jung held the belief that synchronicities served a similar function to dreams and psychological symptoms that essentially served to counteract the one-sidedness of the psyche and turn the person toward the unconscious and therefore toward greater wholeness—that is, individuation. In other words, we can benefit from a synchronistic event by allowing it to challenge and redirect our own conscious attitude". 

But  what follows immediately afterwards:


" By observing more of the aliveness and autonomy of the world around us, we begin to allow synchronicities to occur ". 

 is not a necessary nor a sufficient condition for synchronicities to happen, IMHO.

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      • Hi Shawn,

        Thanks for your questions- it was the one time I have seen Richard Tarnas, and it was a great talk. Those list of three things I wrote in my first post up above are things Tarnas sees connect astrology, romantic love, and astrology:  potential for profound significance, susceptible to negation, and susceptible to projection and illusion. With romantic love, he said you want an "I-thou" instead of "I-it" cause in "I-it" you are projecting despite who the other really is, looking at the other as an instrument of emotional and sexual satisfaction instead of their actual personhood.  He also said that if I'm carrrying the divine, its not impossible for a communion of divinities in that I'm recognizing the divinity of other as they recognize it in me.

        As an astrologer I loved his integration of Astrology into this.  He said that Jung saw astrology as synchronicity on a grand cosmic scale, questioned it empirically as projection of collective unconscious onto cosmos.  Tarnas said that astrologers can want to be a "priestly know-it-all" who can explain everything to a client so it can involve a lot of inflation and projection potentially.  He said we need to engage astrology with the same discernment and openness of heart that we need to apply to romantic love (and we could add synchronicity in there too).  He said a negation of the universe having no soul is the scientific, objective perspective that rules out possibility of authentic communication from the universe to us.  He said the projection of the astrologer is the need to have secure knowledge of the universe- this also does not permit an authentic communication with the universe. He said it takes a balance of rigor and imagination, like the positive Saturn of critical discernment, like the positive Neptune that can experience numinous Spirit.



    • Thanks a lot, Richard.

      I wonder if you could help me to find a good online article about Neptune and Saturn archetypes.

      • Hi Gustavo,

        I feel like I understand your perspective on synchronicity. I can say from my own experience that they have occurred when I was not looking for them.  I can share more from the Richard Tarnas speech on the subject I listened to.  I wonder if he would somewhat agree with you, because he did talk of a danger of projection with synchonicity (as well as with romantic love and astrology)- so in that sense you would want to be careful that you were not looking for an synchronicity and interpreting it from an ego perspective. He said that synchronicities, like romantic love and astrology, can be like "walking a tight rope" because it is a state of enchantment indicating the anima mundi is coordinating events for our own benefit- very Neptunian. So, with Neptune warning we must beware of illusion and mirages and projection- and yet we also do not want to be like a negative Saturn and be too dismissive or skeptical, passing it off as a coincidence.  He said we need to develop positive Saturn- critical discernment, and also positive Neptune- awareness of experiencing the numinous Spirit around us.  He said we don't want to use a synchronicity to build our ego up- he said that would be like a pre-Copernican view of the universe and seeing oneself as the center of the universe. He said critical discernment and understanding of synchronicities can help with our individuation, and what can be painful about individuation is i'ts not about what the ego wants, but what the universe wants through us.

        My personal feeling about synchronicities is that they can be occurring when people do not even notice them because they are not being open and expectant about synchronicities, but that doesn't mean they are not happening.  So being open to them can help one notice them, but discernment is also important when interpreting meaning.  But I don't think being open to them is a necessity for them to occur- I think sometimes it is a synchronicity finally noticed that can open up a person's consciousness and awareness to what we are talking about.

        About Saturn and Neptune- you have asked a big question!  There is so much information, so many perspectives regarding Saturn and Neptune, I'm not sure where to start.  Here is an interesting one, though, from Alan Oken:

        Alan Oken is into esoteric astrology, which is different than traditional or mundane astrology, uses different rulerships and is more about spiritual purpose or soul purpose.

        Usually, Saturn is seen as a karma archetype, dealing with consensus reality and the different beliefs of consciousness in 3-D reality most people live by, as a structure of consciousness, it can be your limitation or something you have to work through. In alchemy it is like lead. It can be like a limitation to face and work through but which has great rewards.  It can be about negation and skepticism, too, which is where the Richard Tarnas speech was going with it that I referenced to you.  

        In contrast, Neptune is more about a lack of boundaries. It is more about Spirit, unconditional love, illusions, delusions, epiphanies, synchronicities, perceiving reality beyond the perceptual limitations most humans place on it in a very Saturnine manner. Ultimate understanding, Spirit, Source, God, Goddess. Can also be about escapism, separating desires, confusion, addictions,....

        I also have my own blog, but I don't typically just explain an archetype in a straight forward manner like you are asking- but maybe I should! Here it is though:

        I hope something out of all this is helpful!


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