2005/06/12

Coincidence

Am I supposed to believe in this? What is it, anyway? How about concordance or happenstance?

Sometimes life seems full of happy accidents which all contribute to a particular view on what's going on in my life. Somethinge the accidents are not so happy. Rarely, however, are they mixed. Perhaps that means I'm just viewing them in one light or another, and the fortuity of them is all in my mind. Yet how can it just be my own attitude which determines this? The events that occur are far beyond my control. I often cannot even gain conscious control over my interpretation of such events. It would be foolish of me, I think, to believe that coincidence itself has any greater significance beyond mere "existence"--as in that there are coincidences. As the blighting creation of an animator has told us, it's a small world, after all. And in this way: with so many things going on, how can we avoid finding that some of them are unlikely yet seemingly full of portent or potential? Perhaps one becomes attuned to coincidences in some way, and sees them everywhere.

At some times of life it may seem that everything which happens has gone on just for oneself to reach the moment of realization... We create the narrative of our own lives, in which we figure as our own protagonist (even, sometimes, as the tragic fop or the antihero); we must make it seem as though this story is significant, meaninful, more than a mere series of neural firings followed by everlasting unbeing. Even small things, like finding that I and another person react similarly to two somewhat differing sets of events, can suddenly spark introspection far beyond that ever considered by the average run of paycheck-chasers. But in the end there are more questions, as now, than answers. This life is what it is, unlikely as anything else: there is just as much chance, really, that this should go on as anything else, or that nothing at all should happen.

There could very well be no events or things, and that there are is a mere matter of fact. So why this or that event, why this or that attitude toward it... Can we resign ourselves to existence as wetwork robots, plying our bony derelicts through a fog of self-delusion, believing that there is anything more to what goes on than the data of its happening (there being data is itself just a matter of fact, too)--or is this question about meaning in things and events senseless? In other words, will random assignation of importance to one time-worm (that's the name of a region of space--and anything in it--during some temporal period) win out, or should we, Taoistically, deny the contrast which supposedly sets one thing apart from another?

In still other words, I can't decide what to think about coincidences, at all.

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