Jung used the term’ synchronicity’ to describe the coincidence (or equivalence) of events, psychic and physical states. Jung called these, ‘temporally coincident occurrences of acausal events’. Jung writes, ‘the meaningful coincidence or equivalence of a psychic and a physical state that have no causal relationship to one another means, in general terms, that it is a modality without a cause, an “acausal orderedness’” (20io, p. 138). He had always been interested in coincidences, especially the remarkable ones unexplained by positivist science. For Jung, positivist science makes the assumption that causality must be understood in terms of temporal relations between cause and effect (i.e. if A precedes B and C in time, A must be the cause or somehow causally related to A): causes precede effects in a constant conjunction of events in shared time and space. Most importantly, Jung argued that the constant conjunction of events (i.e. statistical regularity among variables and prediction) does not offer adequate explanatory accounts in the human sciences (i.e. psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics). Jung was especially interested in what he called “inconstant” relationships. He writes: ‘the philosophical principle that underlies our conception of natural law is causality. But if the connection between cause and effect turns out to be only statistically valid and only relatively true, then the causal principle is only of relative use for explaining natural processes and therefore presupposes the existence of one or more other factors which would be necessary for an explanation’ (Jung, 2010, p. 7).
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