- Religion and Philosophy
10 Strange Coincidence Examples
Coincidences and Synchronicity: Do They Happen By Chance?
I am fascinated by coincidences: are they purely by chance or is there something more powerful behind them? I'd be interested to know what you think.
Some are definitely more meaningful than others and are often then described as synchronicity.
I've put together 10 of my favourite coincidence examples for this lens taken from many I have collected for my blog 67 Not Out. On the blog I also write about other mysteries such as Near Death Experiences (NDE), Reincarnation, Ghosts, Dreams, UFOs and so on and so on. Hope you'll have time to visit.
Anyway, enough waffle, let's get on with it.
This is about a personal coincidence I mentioned in The Beginnings Of My Interest In Coincidences.
Thinking about this today perhaps it doesn't sound such a big deal but, at the time, it affected me greatly and still intrigues me now.
My son had just told us that he had qualified as a Chartered Accountant, which takes quite a few years work here in the UK. I was, of course, chuffed to bits about this and, after talking about it with my wife, I went upstairs to our bedroom.
I wanted to get something or other out of my wardrobe and, for some reason, I was wondering what my father, now deceased, would have thought about my son's success. As I reached into the wardrobe a small bag fell out.
The bag just happened to be one in which I kept a few of my dad's possessions. Nothing of value but they all mean something to me: his old watch, cigarette case, penknife, wedding ring, darts, a tie and a few other trinkets all full of memories.
I then looked at the watch. Dad was always one for punctuality and often asked, "Do you know what time it is?" when I was a teenager either arriving home at night or getting up late in the morning. Then I noticed the time where the hands of the watch had stopped and have remained ever since.
The time on the watch was exactly the time that my son had been born (3.20pm).
Perhaps I was in an emotional state but this really hit me. It was as if it was a message from my father saying he knew all about his grandson.
Okay, this may sound very fanciful but what are the odds of the watch stopping exactly at the time of my son's birth? Plus the bag fell out of the wardrobe 'by itself'.
Anyway, that was one of the first things that got me paying attention to coincidences and synchronicity. They have fascinated me ever since.
2: Titanic Coincidences
Classic Titanic story
This is one of those 'famous' happenings which I find fascinating. In this case it's about the Titanic coincidences.
Titanic in dock
But first lets put a slightly different slant on things. How and why things happen is always interesting. Are they destined to happen and if so why?
With the Titanic the problem, as we know, was an iceberg and we accept this without a second thought. But if we think about it properly wasn't it a bit of a coincidence that the iceberg - most likely thousands of years old - broke away from Greenland at that precise time and moved south as far as the New York latitude?
Wasn't it also strange that the Titanic's captain had sped up the ship to try to reach it's destination before time? If he hadn't have done this the Titanic wouldn't have hit the iceberg and killed all of those people.
It was almost like a plan coming together - the iceberg and Titanic had to collide. Some would say it was in the stars.
There are numerous tales of people foretelling the Titanic's demise. A Mrs. Marshall is supposedly to have screamed out as the ship sailed past the Isle of Wight, "It's going to sink, that ship is going to sink. Save them! Save them!" Her mother was on the Titanic.
There are dozens of these sort of stories but many cannot be proven. The case of Morgan Robertson is slightly different as in 1898 he published a novel telling of the 'unsinkable' SS Titan.
In his story the SS Titan steamship sailed out of Southampton on its inaugural voyage and went on to sink following a collision with, yes, an iceberg.
There were similarities between the Titan and the Titanic:
1) Titan and Titanic were on their first voyage.
2) Both ships were sunk after hitting an iceberg.
3) There is a similarity in the names of Titan and Titanic.
4) Titan was 70,000 tons and the Titanic 66,000 tons.
5) Titan 800 feet in length, Titanic 882 feet.
6) Both had three propellers.
7) Both the fictional Titan and the real Titanic were thought of as unsinkable by their owners and therefore had insufficient lifeboats. The Titan, according to the story, had 24 lifeboats for 2,500 passengers and the Titanic had just 20 lifeboats for 2,224 passengers.
Perhaps there was magic afoot with the Titanic sinking? According to the British Museum she was carrying an Egyptian Pharaoh mummy destined for an American museum.
Newspapers at the time made much of the mummy calling it cursed. They made claims that everyone who had photographed the mummy had all mysteriously died.
Some of all this we can perhaps take with a pinch of salt and yet some of the coincidences make you wonder.
As the Titanic left port a cockerel crowed - a sign of bad luck for sailors ...
In 1939 a ship called the Titanian was in the general area of where the Titanic went down. The helmsman had a dreadful premonition and decided to try and stop the ship. Later the Titanian hit an iceberg. It was damaged but could carry on thanks to the collision being at a slow speed.
Images on this post in Public Domain
Footnote: I wrote this post just before my evening meal. Feeling lazy my wife and I decided to have this in front of the television. I switched on the TV and it was the Antiques Roadshow Special and what were they talking about - yes, Titanic collectibles!
They had the original Titanic plans from when it was built, postcards sent by a musician from the ship before it went down (he died) and lots of info about medals issued to the crew of the ship that went to Titanic's rescue - the RMS Carpathia. Carpathia saved 705 lives but was sunk herself by a German submarine during World War 1 on July 17th 1918.
Titanic memorabilia is now valuable.
3: Michael Jackson's Will & Memorial Service
The dates are the same
Perhaps you may have seen this before but it's new to me, it's about the death of Michael Jackson.
There is a coincidence between the dates of Michael Jackson's will and also of his Memorial Service.
As per the funeral ticket on the right, Michael's Memorial Service was held on July 7th last year. We can then see below that his will was also dated the 7th of July - but this time 2002.
Should you wish to see Michael Jackson's will in full it can be seen here in pdf format.
I never believed that anything was a coincidence. There's a reason for everything that happens.
Here's one of those strange coincidences I hadn't heard before. It's about the Bible and supposedly shows that God is at the centre of the Bible. The facts can easily be checked. Well maybe not easily but they can be confirmed if so inclined.
To start off with:
The shortest chapter of the Bible is Psalms 117 and the longest chapter is Psalms 119.
Now by 'coincidence' Psalms 118 is the middle chapter of the Bible - between the shortest and the longest.
That's all pretty straight forward.
This means that there are 594 chapters (if you have time to count them) before Psalms 118 and, of course, as it's in the middle, there are 594 chapters after Psalms 118.
Okay, if you add 594 and 594 hopefully you'll get a total of 1188.
This is where it gets interesting because Psalms 118:8 just happens to be the middle verse of the Bible - another coincidence? And this is what the verse reads:
"It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man."
In other words God is at the centre of the Bible.
Q.E.D. or quod erat demonstrandum.
Obviously it's up to individuals as to what they actually make of this.
5: The Old Photo Date Coincidence
Is romance and marriage in the air?
A 'coincidence' from Suzie all about a date on a photo.
I have been living with my boyfriend for three years and a couple of weeks ago we went to see his parents. I don't really get on too well with his mother but that's another story, though his father laughs and says it's because we are so alike - ugh, the thought of that!
The boyfriend's mother dug out loads of baby photos of her darling little boy. He looked quite cute as a baby, he still does actually. There was one larger photo and for some reason I turned it over and there on the back was a date in pencil.
I took a bit of a gulp as the date was my birthday: day, month and year!
The boyfriend is two years older than me so it can't have been the date the photo was taken. This picture was of him as a very small baby. His mother and father have no idea why the date is there or what it means.
It's puzzling me as to what this might mean. Maybe our relationship is written in the stars or something. Could that be church bells I'm hearing? Finger's crossed.
Halfway Coincidence Poll
Do Coincidences Happen Purely By Chance?
6: Mark Twain And Halley's Comet
He predicted his death
Though known of for many years previously (recorded by the Chinese in 240 BC) Halley's Comet was named after Edmond Halley, he concluded in 1705 that the comet returned every 76 years. If you missed the last one, we'll all get a chance to see what all the fuss is about on July 28th, 2061 (fingers crossed!).
Halley's Comet is thought of as a once in a lifetime experience but it wasn't for the writer and satirist Samuel Langhorne Clemens better known by the pen name of Mark Twain. I'm sure you will know that he wrote such classics as Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884) and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876).
Many famous coincidences you have to take with a pinch of salt, but this one about Mark Twain and Halley's Comet does seem to stack up. He was born on November 30th, 1835 exactly two weeks after the comet's perihelion - along with, of course, many other people.
The difference is that mark Twain made a prediction in his autobiography, published in 1909. He wrote:
"I came in with Halley's Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it. It will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don't go out with Halley's Comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: 'Now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.'"
And, sure enough Mark Twain left this earth on April 21st, 1910 the day following the comet's perihelion. So his prediction proved correct.
It's a nice story but doubters will no doubt point out that in 1909 Mark Twain wasn't in the best of health and already suffered chest pains. It wasn't too difficult, therefore, for him to predict that he would die the following year.
I prefer, however, to just to go along with the Halley's Comet and Mark Twain coincidence as I feel sure he'd be chuffed to think that we do.Photos: Mark Twain - Mathew Brady; Halley's Comet - Public Domain.
7: Twin Coincidences
Coincidences aren't always something good
Not all coincidences are good news. One such case was reported by news groups around the world in 2002 when two 70 year old twin brothers died.
The Finnish twins were killed on the same stretch of road within hours of each other.
The scene was set in Raahe, 600 kilometres north of the capital, Helsinki, where the first twin met his death while riding his bicycle and was hit by a lorry. (Photo: Pertsaboy)
Just two hours later his brother was crossing the same road, again on his bicycle, when he was hit and killed by another lorry. There is no reason to suspect that the second twin knew of his brothers death.
The police officer investigating the tragedies, Marja-Leena Huhtala, said at the time, "This is simply a historic coincidence. Although the road is a busy one, accidents don't occur every day."
Ms. Huhtala went on to say, "It made my hair stand on end when I heard the two were brothers, and identical twins at that. It came to mind that perhaps someone from upstairs had a say in this."
Debbie gives examples of her own connection with her twin:
"... our husbands also share the same birthday (no, they're not twins!), they are both left-handed, they both wear glasses and they both graduated from the same high school. Pretty weird, huh?!
Is it just a bond, or is it something more?
We have another connection - and this is the one that baffles me the most. I can't tell you how many times I have been thinking about calling my sister, when the phone has rung and it was her on the other end. It just happened again today, as I was writing up this story!"
You can get a free chapter of her Twin Connections book by registering here.
Nothing too dramatic, as far as coincidences go, but it's another small personal experience from one of our holidays last year.
We were staying in a 16th century cottage in Rye, East Sussex, England. That's the row of cottages at the front of the photo. This was taken from the church bell tower opposite.
One day my wife and I set off for a long walk heading in the direction of the sea. As we crossed some open fields I started talking about Spike Milligan, a British/Irish comedian, writer, actor, musician and poet who died back in 2002. Nothing specific, just general chat as we walked.
After crossing the fields I wasn't too sure which way to head but saw a sign saying Winchelsea, so I suggested we went in that direction. As we approached the village it was highish on a hill and looked to be old and interesting.
We made our way through the old gatehouse and into the village. It was typically, old fashioned England with a big church in the center. Though I don't belong to any organised religion I like churches: the way they feel, the atmosphere inside and so on. They are usually full of history.
We spent an age in the church and my wife even made a 'rainbow' woollen bracelet, which she attached to her rucksack. As we were leaving my wife saw a photo of Spike Milligan in the church!
She beckoned me over and it was Spike's picture with directions of how find his grave in the churchyard. This was completely unbeknown to us. We had no idea where he lived when alive or where he was buried. It seems that on his death he was living in Rye.
We found his grave outside and paid our respects. In typical Milligan humour his stone bears the words "DÃºirt mÃ© leat go raibh mÃ© breoite". This is Irish and translates to "I told you I was ill." I have since read that the church would not allow this to be written in English.
It seemed the obvious thing to do for a 10 year old. Laura Buxton was at her grandparent's golden wedding anniversary and there was a helium filled balloon going spare. So she wrote on a label her address with the message 'Please return to Laura Buxton' and released the balloon to fly off in the sky. Laura was in Staffordshire, England.
Ten days passed and a farmer in Milton Lilbourne, Wiltshire pulled a balloon out of the hedge that separated his fields from his neighbour's house.
He noticed the name of Laura Buxton. As this was the name of his neighbour's daughter he handed over the balloon straight away, thinking it must belong to her. But this was a different Laura Buxton, though she was also ten years old, but she lived 140 miles away from the girl who had released the balloon.
Laura Buxton from Milton Lilbourne got out her pen and wrote to Laura Buxton in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. As this was such a coincidence their parents allowed them to meet up ... and then it got a lot more of a bizarre coincidence.
The girls, both tall for their age, were the same height and both decided to wear pink sweaters and jeans for their first meeting. Their hair was brown and they both wore it in the same style ... but there's still more!
Both girls had three year old black Labrador Retrievers dogs and grey pet rabbits. They also had guinea pigs, which were the same color and even had the same orange markings on their hindquarters.
It was almost like these were identical girls, two halves brought together by a balloon.
This all happened in June 2001 but the girls are still friends as they feel the circumstances that brought them together are too significant to be written off as mere coincidence - and who can argue with this!
The story was first seen in the Swindon Advertiser newspaper.
I'm told that there was a similar incident where a young girl sent a mermaid balloon, with a note attached, to her deceased father in heaven. The balloon travelled over 3000 miles and was found by a hunter in Mermaid Lake, Canada, who eventually located the little girl. The movie is supposedly based on this incident. Mermaid
10: Photo Predicts John Lennon's Death
A dubious coincidence
I expect that for many readers this is probably pushing the coincidence thing a little too much, but thought I'd still publish it here.
When a big name dies unexpectedly lots of predictions about the death come out of the woodwork. Think Elvis Presley, Princess Diana, Michael Jackson and, in this instance, John Lennon.
Let's look at the photo above, supposedly a picture which predicts John's death.
That's John in the pic, standing by a sign which reads: 'The best way to go is by M D & Co.' But in the photo the o of Co is missing. This leaves MDC which just happens to be the initials of his killer - Mark David Chapman. (Photo Right: NYPD mugshot of Chapman in 1980, Public Domain)
And another coincidence MD&Co are, so I'm told, funeral directors!
So there you have it, a photo which predicted John Lennon's death and also gave his killers initials ... maybe, perhaps ...
More Stuff On Coincidences
I would be interested to hear about any of your own personal coincidences. I am always looking for more stories to include on my blog 67 Not Out.