Tagcausality

A sidenote on belief in the supernatural

I want to dwell a little longer on the belief in a “supernatural” kind of necessity. My guiding example throughout this series of postings has been Vertigo; and Vertigo shares this characteristic — which I have called an intimation of an inevitability — with other narratives of a certain design, including the “appointment in Samarra” and ancient tragedies such as that of Oedipus, where “[t]hings...

The language of “not a coincidence”

In case in which coincidences are explainable by someone’s (hidden agenda), the sense of “meaningfuless” vanishes, and thus we no longer see them as synchronistic. Such cases are often described using the phrase “not a coincidence”.

What is Jung’s notion of causality?

Jung’s essay on synchronicities is centered around the notion of causality: he points out certain phenomena that (according to him) cannot be causally explained, and in general he claims that the law of causality is insufficient as a principle for scientific explanation. What does he actually mean by terms such as ‘causal’ and 'causality'?

On the acts of the golfing gods

In the final round of the 2010 Masters golf tournament, two commentators were surprised, for a brief moment, about a mysteriously unsuccessful putting stroke. And then the replay revealed what really had happened.

Causal agents, their stand-ins, and the impression of meaningfulness

In the literature on synchronicities, that phenomenon is usually defined as a coincidence of two or more events which invokes a “sense of meaningfulness”, and where the events in question — crucially for the point I want to focus on — are not causally linked. In one respect, that last clause is a sensible requirement. For if there were a causal link between those events, that would suffice as...

Subjectivity and the inability to find causal connections

In Jung’s examples of synchronicities, at least three ingredients seem necessary - all of them rather subjective in nature: first, there is a perceived connection between two events; secondly, a subjectively felt need for an explanation of that connection; and thirdly, an inability to construe the connection as a causal relationship.

Two faces of the synchronicities essay

When we try to understand the synchronicities essay, and related writings from Jung’s late period, we face a deep-seated complication: Jung himself thought of his project along the lines of a misleading analogy...

The unconscious is not (entirely) in the head

There is an air of mysticism about claims, often found in Jungian psychology, that the unconscious ‘arranges’ things in the external world. How can something psychological, something that is — so to speak — merely ‘in my head’, have real influence over physical objects and other people? Is that just a figure of speech, or should it be taken seriously? And if the latter — how? Let’s clear this up!

Leif Frenzel is a writer and independent researcher. He has a background in philosophy, literature, music, and information technology. His recent interest is Jungian psychology, especially synchronicities and the relationship between consciousness and the unconscious.

alchemy allegorical style archetypes causality dark side death dreams eros erotetic arch film frame analysis ghost-story style ghosts horror-story style intertextuality Jung philology liminality literature magic methodology mirrors mystery mysticism myth adaptation style narrative analysis pathologizing persona personal note personification projection psychoid romantic love self-knowledge self-knowlegde shadow soul spirit subjectivity surrealism symbolistic style symbols synchronicities technology three-episodes style time