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‘Coincidence’ – Salon at Blacks, April 28, 2007

26 participants

Sacha Cradock, Guiseppe Mascoli, James Putnam,

Sally O’Reilly, Nelson Crespo (didn’t stay), Clemente

Jo Stockham, Alberto Mora, Beatrice, B, Alan O’Cain

Tanya Seghatchian, Hilary Koob-Sassen, Wolfe Lenkiewicz

Paddy O’Connor, Irving Finkel, Ina Otzko, William, James Graham

Martin Sexton, Martha Fein, Jasmine Rodgers, Bridget Hugo, Sean

Paolo Park, Kathleen Gray

Coincidence is exactly what it is: co-incidence. Many people believe coincidences happen too often to just mean nothing and think they involve mental telepathy or are due to intervention from some superior being or force. Rather than accepting the idea that their life doesn’t necessarily need to have a meaning and is merely a series of unrelated moments they choose to believe in notions of fate and destiny. Destiny is a basic human longing and believing in it gives meaning and purpose to life. Yet we might consider just how many events in our lives did not involve coincidence. How often have we thought about someone we haven’t heard from in awhile who didn’t suddenly call us out of the blue? But Non-coincidental events do not register in our memories with nearly the same intensity as coincidental ones.

Synchronicity is when two or more seemingly 'just pure chance' events coincide together to form a sort of connection that has a special and personal meaning for the perceiver. Most improbable coincidences likely result from play of random events. The very nature of randomness assures that combing random data will yield some pattern - hence some people use this formula to predict stock market, card hands, board games etc.. All coincidence can be explained mathematically and reduced to a probability. Probability theory can be illustrated by an equation for shared birthdates. Out of ten random groups of 41 persons, in nine of them at least two persons will celebrate identical birthdates.

There is also the fundamental notion of patterns of connection or that everything is connected to everything else. This relates to the new science of cellular networks where information, disease, knowledge and just about everything else is disseminated through a complex series of networks made up of interconnected hubs, These networks are replicated in every facet of human life - they operate on the notion that a few large events carry most of the action. The Web, for example, is dominated by a few very highly connected nodes, or hubs... such as Yahoo or Google.  The complex and interconnected world we live in will inevitably throw up freakish and seemingly unlikely coincidences at some point in everyone’s life.





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