Thursday, January 07, 2016
Beyond Synchronicity: Reading the Signs
As I wrote in the previous post, 2015 had some hard lessons for me. But sometimes those are the lessons we need. One thing you will notice is that the more you tune in to what is happening beneath the surface of consensus reality, the more pronounced your experiences become, whether good, bad or in-between.
And 2015 taught me that there were some attachments I needed to disattach myself from in order to focus on the real work that needs to be done.
I had a very long talk with our Gordon last night, much of which will hopefully make it to his podcast. We talked quite a bit about Synchronicity and Synchromysticism†, in part because I've been going back to basics and doing the kind of personal Synchromystic work (for lack of a better term) I did for a long time before I started blogging. It's been an interesting experience in that whatever is driving this phenomena often notices you and will begin to engage you in conversation. Synchromystics refer to this as the "Sync Wink."
But we both agreed that Synchronicity was a useful term to encompass certain kinds of phenomena but doesn't really offer much tangible guidance as to the origin of that phenomena or recommend what you can actually do with it.
It's here that we find ourselves on shakier footing, dealing with the realities of psi and magic.
I bring this up because while doing the work I noticed an interesting synchronization that said a lot about my recent experience. I had big plans for last year, but 2015 thought otherwise. I didn't just have plans, I did a tremendous amount of work on a fiction project that I announced here.
I planned to complete the first volume of this project during the autumn months but was floored by a bout of chronic fatigue the likes of which I hadn't experienced before, thanks in part to the brutal, unrelenting pollen season.
It was only while mulling over the events of the past year that I realized the wisdom behind this hard discipline, since I hadn't paid attention to the first warning sign that my 2015 plans were not very good plans.
You see, the fiction project had an interesting, if not predictable, genesis. It was born out of a pitch I was working on for an X-Files comic series. Just as I was about to begin executing those plans (meaning start putting together pages of the outline I'd written), IDW Publishing announced their own X-Files comic series, which was in some ways remarkably similar to what I was working on, less so in many others. Many, many others.
So rather than give up I worked on a new pitch, which was called The X-Files: Declassified. This pitch would be set during the early years of the series' run and delve into the histories of characters like The Well-Manicured Man, Diana Fowley, Max Fenig, et al. But IDW had other ideas, like X-Files/Ghostbusters and X-Files/Ninja Turtles crossovers and so on and I thought, umm, maybe later.
But I had a lot of good ideas that I didn't want to go to waste so I went back and began from scratch. I ended up a long way from where I started before but also delving deeper into the corporate world order, the military-industrial complex, mind control, elite secret societies, satanic cults within the military, child abuse and experimentation, weaponized psi, interdimensional entities and so on than I could in the context of a licensed property.
I had all the pieces of the puzzle for the first volume ready to assemble when I announced the project here. Then 2015 had a little surprise for me: not two days later, The X-Files TV revival was announced.
Timing, as they say, is everything.
You see, my book project was designed for a world in which The X-Files no longer existed. I took the concept very far afield, but it was still locked into its basic DNA (meaning it was an occult detective story with political overtones). No wanting to give up after coming so far I resolved to finish the project once my schedule cleared up.
Of course once it did, I was flat on my back. It was almost as if something was trying to tell me something, a message I ignored back in March.
Once I (mostly) got past the fatigue issue, I came to my senses and realized that as much as I loved the work I'd done, it had been rendered moot by circumstances beyond my control. I also came to realize that the time wasn't right for it in other ways as well. It simply wouldn't resonate right now. The world is otherwise occupied. (This process actually repeated itself in microcosm but I won't bore you with the details)
Because of the Sync work (as well as other methodologies), I now realize that veering off into fiction or going back into comics would not only be a detour from the work I should be doing, it would also a phenomenal waste of time, energy and money. I can't explain exactly why I've come to that conclusion only that I am fully confident in it.
I don't regret the (incredible amount of) work I did on the novel project. Actually, I hope to publish it when I think its time has come around. But I've got other, more salient projects, some of which have been idling for quite some time, that I very much want to concentrate on instead.
WHAT IT ALL BOILS DOWN TO
Gordon and I agreed that Synchronicity and all this other stuff we talk about it is only worth your time if you actually use it for something. Synchronicity, or whatever you want to call it, can act like signs on a highway if you learn its language. I've lost count of the decisions I've made because of a "sync" or a symbol or a sign, decisions that altered the course of my life in powerful and wonderful ways.
Gordon sees it all in the context of magic and I can't argue with that. My only caveat is that magic should always be a means to an end, not an end to itself.
You see, Synchronicity was popularized by Jung, who seemed to be Aleister Crowley's Janus Twin, the light to his shadow. It's remarkable how alike the two men were, how similar their obsessions were. But Jung seemed to take a turn in which Crowley could not, and lived a life Crowley could have had but denied himself.
I recently read Francis King's magical biography of Crowley and saw it as a classic tragedy, a brilliant man undone by hubris.*I believe that learning to read Synchronicity- or psi or magical signs, whatever you prefer- properly requires you to let go of that kind of ego, to throw yourself into its currents.
I can't help but wonder what would have become of Crowley if he let go of this illusion that we can impose our will on forces we still can't even properly identify, never mind control. I think the beginning of wisdom- and magic, even- is acknowledging how powerless we are in the face of them, just as much as we are in the face of the tides, the winds and the movements of the plates of the earth.
A surfer doesn't impose his will on a wave, he learns how to read waves and how to then let them take him where he wants to go. It takes a lot of skill and practice but also a kind of sixth sense as well. I think that's still a powerful metaphor for dealing with these more ineffable currents.
† And not at all about Jack Kirby or The X-Files.
*This is a topic I want to return to; having read quite a few magical biographies now, I must caution that very few- if any- seem to have happy endings.
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