Monday, 15 February 2010

Synchronicity

‘Synchronicity is the experience of two or more events that are causally unrelated occurring together in a meaningful manner.’
Carl Jung coined the term synchronicity to describe what he called the ‘acausal connecting principle’ that links mind and matter. He stated that synchronicity manifests itself through significant coincidences that cannot in themselves be explained by cause and effect, and when a strong need arises in the psyche of an individual.

So what on Earth am I going on about? Well … it happened to me … like this …

I used to be a member of THE SOUTH AND CENTRAL AMERICAN MILITARY HISTORIANS SOCIETY, and I recently received an email from the society’s president – Terry D. Hooker – in which he very kindly offered to send me some electronic copies of recent issues of the society’s journal, EL DORADO. I accepted this offer with alacrity because the military history of South America has always been of great interest to me. The very first article I ever had published in THE NUGGET was about the Chaco War, and I followed this with a more detailed article on the same subject that appeared in an early issue of WARGAMES ILLUSTRATED.

One of the issues of EL DORADO that Terry sent me included a article about PARAGUAYAN UNITS OF THE CHACO WAR complied by Gustavo Adolfo Riart, and as my work of the redraft of Morschauser’s rules was stalled, I decided to get some of my Paraguayan and Bolivian army units out of their storage boxes to remind myself of all the fun and enjoyment I had had producing them. The armies were created using Peter Laing 15mm figures, and are mounted on multi-figure bases that will fit nicely into 3-inch grid squares.

Having got some figures out of their boxes, it seemed like a waste not to fight a battle with them. At first I thought of using one of the earlier, multi-figure base versions of Morschauser’s rules, but instead I dug out the most recent draft of WHEN EMPIRES CLASH! as it seemed more appropriate. As I reacquainted myself with the rules I suddenly realised that an answer to the problems I was having with Commanders in the redraft of Morschauser’s rules was staring me in the face. I had got too close to the problem to remember that I already had a workable solution to a similar problem. All I have to do now is to sit down for an hour or two at my word processor tomorrow morning, and with a bit of luck I should have the redraft written by midday.

And what has all this to do with synchronicity?

Well if Terry Hooker had not sent me the email, I would not have read the article about the Chaco War in EL DORADO, as a result of which I would not have got my Paraguayan and Bolivian armies out of their storage boxes. I would not have thought of fighting a battle with them, which would have meant that I would not have re-read WHEN EMPIRES CLASH! and I would not have realised that I already had a partial solution to my problem with representing Commanders on the tabletop.

I had a strong need to find an answer to a problem, the coincidences – which I cannot explain – occurred, et voila, I have a possible solution! If that isn’t synchronicity, I don’t know what else to call it.

6 comments:

  1. I love it when a plan comes together. Btw Bob, the next turn of the PBEM game will be winging its way to you as soon as Napoleon gets his finger out.

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  2. Hi Bob,

    I am a huge believer in synchronicity from a wargames perspective as evidenced by the huge number of projects started as a result of it - Vietnam being one and probably the Balkan Wars as well!! I am looking forward to the answer re command.

    All the best,

    Ogre

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  3. Conrad Kinch,

    Sometimes things do just come together at the right time and the right place.

    I will be adding the next quote from Blucher's diary sometime today, with his reactions to recent events.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  4. Some might say its simply co-incidence. But if you hadn't written the articles in the first place, then the chain of events wouldn't have started. You're simply enjoying the fruits of your labour!

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  5. Ogrefencer,

    It just happens sometimes, doesn't it?

    The thing I am trying to resist - at the moment - is getting diverted into doing yet another project, this time Chaco War related. I already have several very good books about the war on my bookshelves, and have ordered another that should be delivered later this week. I also have some suitable 20mm figures that just need painting. Finally, if I can get the Morschauser rules 'right' I will have everything that I need.

    It is going to take a considerable amount of self control NOT to 'do' the Chaco War (or at least its 'Tintin' equivalent, the Chapeau War!).

    All the best,

    Bob

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  6. Phil B,

    This is one of the problems with coincidence and synchronicity - you only recognise that they have happened with hindsight!

    All the best,

    Bob

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