There Are No Accidents in Love and Relationships:

Meaningful Coincidences and the Stories of Our Families


Robert H. Hopcke


Reviewed by Henry Reed


Meaningful coincidences have taken on the mantle of "synchronicity" ever since Carl Jung introduced the term. As the author notes, Jung's creation found a waiting and welcome audience, as many folks had already come to accept the reality of this mysterious process. Twenty years ago, the author came out with his first book on the subject,

There Are No Accidents: Synchronicity and the Stories of Our Lives

. It was well received and motivated to keep notes, and now, we have a new volume, this time focusing on synchronicity in families. The book is not just stories, however, because the author has made some interesting discoveries about synchronicity.

          It is important that we first understand, Hopcke, emphasizes, that synchronicity is best understood subjectively. It is how the you perceive the coincidence and judge its connection to your life, that is the essence of synchronicity. We can hypothesize various models that "explain" how synchronicity "works," how it expresses, for example, the mundus unus idea that everything is One. But the soul of synchronicity is the personal, subjective experience and how it impresses itself upon the person, with a hidden, symbolic meaning that seems intentionally designed to guide the person to an important new awareness or realization. He notes, and this is a very important note to some folks who suspect a psychic element to synchronicity, that EVEN IF the synchronous event can be "explained" by reference to some psychic or paranormal process, NEVERTHELESS, the true meaning of the event lies in the subjective response of the experiencer. The emphasis on personal meaning is what makes synchronicities in our families so important, because a lot of our self-image and consciousness was created and experienced within our family contexts.
          The stories Hopcke tells are truly incredible--hard to believe, and thus his interpretation of them becomes even more significant. An adopted child learns as an adult that the birth mom's name is the same as the adoptive mom, and the meaning of the mom's name has personal significance for the adult child. A boy grows up with an imaginary playmate, only to be introduced, by coincidence, to a brother he never knew he had whose image, qualities, and experiences matched that of the fellow's imaginary playmate. The meeting of the two, the resulting revelation, proved to have important signficance for them at that time of their lives.
Who can design such things? What intelligence is at work? Are our lives guided by factors beyond our ken? Mind boggling stories, brought down to earth, suggesting that life is aware of us, and each of us, and our feelings, truly matter, and are of significance.