“The Other Side”

Here’s an old blog post with a really good synchronicity tale. It was actually up on CNN’s web site a few years ago in a section of articles called The Other Side. The series was introduced this way: Some stories blur the lines between science, spirituality and the supernatural. These are stories from “The Other Side.“


Royce Burton was teaching history at a New Jersey university when he decided to tell his class about a frightening experience he had as a young man.

He was a Texas Ranger, patrolling the Rio Grande in 1940, when he got lost in a canyon after dark. He tried to climb out but lost his balance just as he neared the top of a cliff. Suddenly Joe, a fellow Ranger, appeared and hoisted him up to safety with his rifle strap. Burton thanked Joe for saving his life but lost contact with him after both men enlisted in the military during World War II.

Burton was in the middle of sharing his story when an elderly man appeared in the doorway. It was Joe, the fellow Ranger. He had tracked Burton down 25 years later and walked into his classroom at precisely the moment Burton was recounting his rescue.

“I’ll have Joe finish the rest of the story,” Burton said, without missing a beat as the astonished classroom witnessed the two men’s reunion.

You could call Burton’s story an amazing coincidence, but James Hollis calls it something else: “synchronicity” — a meaningful coincidence. (Yes, but it also could be an example of telepathy or precognition. That’s why we refer to synchronicity as an umbrella phenomenon that includes all other types of paranormal experiences.)

“Everybody has stories like that,” says Hollis, a Jungian analyst and author who knew Burton and shares his story in the book Hauntings: Dispelling the Ghosts Who Run Our Lives. “We live in a haunted world where invisible energies are constantly at work.”
Reading that story reminded us of another one that we’ve written about and referred to as the Plum Pudding story. It’s a classic in the genre of synchros. As I continued reading the article, what did I come across but the Plum Pudding story. Here it is:

In 1805, Deschamps, a French poet, was treated to plum pudding by Monsieur de Fortgibu, a stranger he met in a restaurant. A decade later, Deschamps goes to a Paris restaurant and orders plum pudding again. The waiter tells him the last dish has been served to someone else — a Monsieur de Fortgibu.
The story gets odder. In 1832, Deschamps goes to a diner where someone offers him plum pudding. He jokingly tells his friends that the only thing missing is de Fortgibu — and de Fortgibu, now an elderly man and lost, promptly wobbles into the diner.

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2 Responses to “The Other Side”

  1. Dale Dassel says:

    I love the descriptive image: ‘wobbles into the diner’! LOL

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