“A lot of people don’t realize what’s really going on.
They view life as a bunch of unconnected incidents and things.
They don’t realize there’s this, like, Lattice of Coincidence that lays on top of everything.”
That’s a quote from the movie Repo Man.
And while it may be the ramblings of a character who did way too much acid in the 60’s, I think it has a deeper meaning in Virtual Worlds.
When we use virtual worlds, we are thrown into environments of seemingly limitless creative possibilities. And these environments are full of other human beings.
We meet other people in these worlds. We communicate with them. We connect and collaborate. And through these interactions, we share our dreams.
But if you’ve ever spent a fair amount of time in virtual worlds, I bet you’ve experienced something else. Something that probably raised the hairs on the back of your neck a little bit. Something spooky.
An Abundance of Synchronicity.
You know exactly what I’m talking about. Meeting the right person at the right time. Stumbling on a project that dovetails perfectly with your own goals. Finding something you’ve never experienced before, and that something turning out to be what you’ve always been looking for.
Such synchronistic events happen all the time in one’s life. But I’m willing to bet you’ve noticed that they seem to happen a lot more often in virtual worlds.
I spend a lot of time talking with people who use virtual worlds on a daily basis, and a large number of them share this same observation.
So what the hell is going on?
I’ve got lots of anecdotes about synchronicity in virtual worlds. And, unfortunately, the plural of anecdote is not data. But anecdotal evidence can suggest new hypotheses. So I’m going to make a new hypothesis.
I think there is clear anecdotal evidence suggesting that synchronistic events happen at a higher frequency in virtual worlds than in real life. And I hypothesize that the mechanism behind this amplified frequency of sychronicity is as follows:
The unique malleability of objects, identity and environments in Virtual Worlds gives us the ability to more deeply reflect and share our unconscious mind with other human beings.
Jung described synchronicity as “meaningful coincidence.” He argued that synchronistic events reveal an underlying pattern, a conceptual framework that encompasses, but is larger than, any of the systems that display that sychronicity. It was this principle that Jung felt gave evidence for his concepts of archetypes and the collective unconscious.
Our unconscious mind contains all our innermost hopes, dreams and desires. Because of the malleable nature of virtual worlds, our unconscious mind is free to express itself in completely new ways. Through how we customize our identity with avatars. Through the things we build out of thin air. Through amazing acts of creation at the speed of thought.
And while we’re sculpting ourselves and everything around us in virtual worlds, our unconscious mind is reflected in our virtual creations. In creations the likes of which could never exist in the physical world.
But we’re not alone. The virtual world is full of other people. They experience the things we’ve built. They see our avatars in all their marvelousness. They bear witness to all our virtual creations. And in doing so, their unconscious minds pick up the finespun threads of ideas left by our unconscious mind.
Ideas bubble up and connections are made without us consciously noticing they are happening. And before you know it, we find ourselves experiencing brilliant moments of synchronicity at every turn.
And the funniest thing is, we think “Wow, that opportunity came out of nowhere.” But it didn’t. Our mind cultivated it with other minds. We just didn’t notice.
That’s what the hell I think is happening.
All this reminds us how we can never forget those qualities that make us most human (as I blogged about earlier). By thinking carefully about how our human mind works (both consciously and unconsciously) and by figuring out how our minds can best leverage the tools in virtual worlds, we can unlock completely new human potential.
So enjoy your ride on the Lattice of Coincidence. You’ll be amazed at the adventures and opportunities waiting for you.
-John “Pathfinder” Lester
Special thanks to Wizard Gynoid, who commented on a previous blog post of mine, planting the seeds for this one.
i have oftentimes noticed Synchronicity in action in my life in SL. time seems to go faster and events seem “larger than life.” nonetheless, there’s something spookily magical about the opportunities that fall into your lap in SL. it’s one of the reasons why i’m still so much in love with Second Life… and the people who make up its community.
One event that stands out in my mind led to earning very real money for creating an awesome environment with the help of a few friends for a very real organization. A gentleman was looking for a developer to make an island to represent Divers Alert Network. Judging from his conversation, he had dealt with some sticker shock from professional companies. One night, he came to Dreams to watch speed build. The theme: aquariums. That night led to creating an underwater Caribbean paradise full of fish, sharks, coral and sand. He was happy with the results of his search that night. It was an amazing adventure.
Wow, great story! Thanks for sharing it.
YES! I noticed it from the beginning, and, in fact, even my joining-SL story is filled with it. What we bring to SL (or whatever virtual world) is what we find, whether it’s chaos or peace. And I laugh because it feels marvelous to realize this, but at the same time, why should we be surprised? It is our mind at work — the same mind whether it’s a molecule-based or pixel-based world. Yet it is true that a virtual world environment seems to let these things rise more readily to our concious minds… I’m stopping to post this now because my partner is RIGHT NOW telling a physical world story that is this same topic of coincidence!
I think another reason synchronicity seems more common in virtual life is that people are more attentive to the environment because of the higher rate of change and diversity. So we notice those moments of connection that may be overlooked in the physical world. The human body/mind is wired to be very sensitive to novel sensory stimulus, with decreasing reactivity to a particular stimulus as it is repeated over time.
That was the first thing that hooked me into virtual worlds, the fact that it was just “unreal” enough to open up awareness to psychological, inter-personal and cultural processes that are usually pretty invisibile in the physical world due to the fish-in-water effect.
Interesting. Like I said in another comment, the one thing I’m sure of is that there are additional mechanisms at play here. I think you’re completely right that the tendency for virtual worlds to present novel stimuli at a very high frequency is one of them. Thanks for sharing that idea!
Coincidence does not exist. Universal Force based on Physics does. The Estruscans understood what the greater majority today barely realize.
I’ll see your “Universal Force” and raise you “Quantum Entanglement.”
From quantum entanglement we get nonlocal correlations. Which, as observable phenomena, are often interpreted as “coincidences.”
I agree with you, but I’ve been wondering if synchronicity is a little less abundant in virtual worlds than it used to be. I wonder if things done to improve efficiency or other aspects of the virtual world experience may have had the unintended and unfortunate consequence of making moments of synchronicity less likely.
Two specific examples come to mind:
First, consider the effect of people shopping for virtual goods using online marketplaces rather than shopping in world. This should be a more efficient way to find stuff (though, curiously, in a report we did on the SL wearables market we found that those who shop online are actually less satisfied with the styles available than those who shop in world). Even so, it’s less entertaining (and shopping is the #1 form of entertainment in SL and many other virtual worlds) and creates less opportunity to run into other people and experience synchronicity.
Second, consider how various talks, shows, events, etc. have gone from being a totally in world experience to productions that are streamed, made available via podcast, etc. On one hand, this makes them more available to more people and the production values are much enhanced over the days of everyone typing away in text chat, but again it does reduce the chances of ending up in a conversation about some topic that turns out to be fascinating with some person that you just met.
I wonder if media on a prim isn’t a further step in this direction of improvements in efficiency and in some other areas coming at the expense of those moments of magic connection that can happen in virtual worlds.
I hope there’s a way to get the former without losing the latter.
Interesting observation. I agree that the potential for synchronicity in virtual worlds appears to be getting a bit “diluted” from the trends you describe.
Perhaps the answer is simply in finding the right balance between efficiency and immersion. And like finding our balance in anything, we’ll probably tip a bit too far either way before we find equilibrium.
That explains (until now, I hadn’t examined my motives) why I only use the online shopping service to locate stores selling what I want, and then go there to shop… why I have steadfastly refused to enable media… and why I have a visceral reaction against web-on-a-prim.
It doesn’t explain why, in spite of the above, I keep my web browser open with its Twitter app running, reading tweets and blogs… except perhaps that I restrict those activities to topics about SL and other virtual worlds. It bears further thought.
I think you’re spot-on, Mary Ellen.
Btw, Path, I love your blog, and I’ve been so eager for new posts that I check in a couple times a day. Thank you!
Thanks Kim, and you’re very welcome. I’m so happy you’re enjoying my blog. I’m getting into a groove of having a new article at least every other day. If I find more water in the well, I’ll do my best post even more. 😉
I feel this observation is bang-on-the-mark, Mary Ellen, and it hit me at a deep intutive level that this may well be a cause of why Virtual Worlds have seemingly “lost the magic” for me recently and felt more like “hard work”.
Thanks for sharing this observation.
great blog and it was fun getting to meet you at SLCC
Thanks Lauren. Great to meet you, too!
How many anecdotes constitute sufficient evidential weight? I’m already convinced: virtuality is a ‘strange attractor’ for syncronicity, and I believe you’re on to a reason why (though probably not the only one).
By the way, I’ve added a link to this post on a compilation page at my blog; the page is titled “The Avatarian Way“.
If there’s one thing I’m sure of, it’s that there are more mechanisms at play than just the one I described. But I figured I’d take an initial stab at it to hopefully start some good discussion. 😉
I’d also love to see someone do survey-based research on sychronicity in virtual worlds. Might even be a thesis in there for some enterprising PhD student.
maybe it’s the malleability of the world around us in a virtual world, but i think there’s also something in the embodiment in a digital form that concurrently disembodies us from our physical form, which then leads to greater awareness of how it’s the mind that’s ruling it all, and how the things we thought we could take for granted that we understood (for example, the definition and characteristics of distance) aren’t at all what we thought they were.
Remind me to tell you the story of how I met my last Creative Director, and how I found my current job.
I think that it may have a lot to do with the fact that to love, exist in and enjoy the virtual world situation people must have so much in common in the first instance. I have friends who visited once and will never go back but a huge number of people I meet in Second Life become very good friends, I have travelled to see them in real life and some have travelled here and stayed with us. We must have something that we all share, a mind set or similar that enables us to love the virtual world and be excited by it so that we want to be there, teach there, enjoy experiences there etc. I think we must have some sort of physchological link or bit of the brain developed that we share that means more of the moments that we meet like-minded people with ideas that excite us, with similar thoughts and experiences we are likely to be in Second Life – it brings us together in a way the geography of the real world keeps us apart 🙂 Not sure that I have really managed to express what I mean 😦
I think you beautifully summed up the desire we all have for human bonding. 🙂
Great post! I had been wondering about this phenomenon myself and now, here it is, so aptly and intriguingly laid out for us. Thank you. I think you are spot on with your observations and that the ability to craft our reality opens us up to all sorts of new possibilities. Projecting, as it were, our innermost creative impulses for the rest of the world to see in a way that we just don’t in real life. I also suspect that, here on the bleeding edge, as we visit VW locations of interest to us, we are more likely to encounter like-minded individuals with a greater probability of encountering shared goals.
Thanks, rheyden. You touched on an interesting point about visiting VW locations. I think one key component of the “malleability” of virtual environments is how easily we can move from one location to the next. Malleable geography gives us the ability to teleport instantly to locations of interest, making it easier to find like-minded folks.
Does the Lattice of Coincidence also accommodate herds of marauding alpacas?
“As we visit VW locations of interest to us, we are more likely to encounter like-minded individuals with a greater probability of encountering shared goals”
Should we not also open ourselves up to the pain-laden challenges of the unexpected i.e. intense dialectical debate, scales falling from eyes, severe displacement from comfort zone etc?
The alpacas when randomness screams fits perfectly.
“The alpacas when randomness screams fits perfectly”
Yikes, you is cookin’ with gas, Angele, I mean stoichiometric oxy/acetylene
I am taking the liberty of *stealing* rheyden’s so perfectly described reason for what you have so wisely called the “Lattice of Coincidence”. I am *stealing* from her because she and I have exchanged any number of OMG-you-are-kidding-I-can’t-believe-you-too conversations beginning with having lived probably blocks from one another in a different space and time! I am totally convinced that what rheyden has said below is the best explanation of all for what LL so aptly called their SL7B celebration “Unexpected Collaborations”. Here is her description:
“Projecting, as it were, our innermost creative impulses for the rest of the world to see in a way that we just don’t in real life. I also suspect that, here on the bleeding edge, as we visit VW locations of interest to us, we are more likely to encounter like-minded individuals with a greater probability of encountering shared goals.”
Thank you both for expressing so well what my favorite part of *being* in a virtual world is 🙂
My take on synchronicity from an educational perspective which is rather simplistic is as follows. Often as eduTech designers, we have to think upfront whether we want to go for synchronous learning vs asynchronous learning at point of need. Both approaches have pros and cons. Synchronicity cannot escape time and space contraints, even though most of the time, in virtual environments, it is assumed that this is primarily a temporal phenomenon. So question such as, if we are in the same place (virtual or real) at the same time, does this mean that we are enjoying a synchronous interaction? In one way, yes, most of the core elements of its (synchronicity) definition seem to be satisfied. But since I do not feel happy with this thought, I think the definition needs some refinement. So yes, may be ‘connection’ is the additional element.. pretty much in the way connections are described metaphorically between phenomena in the Buddhist’s notion of Indra’s net? So could it be that your take on how we grow, and create, and find opportunities etc.. actually suggests that we have little control on what find and produce in fact. One could even go as far as to suggest that that there is no ‘actor’/’doer’ … its all just flow and coincidences and you rightly suggest (or my interpretation) in my view that in virtual worlds, this can become more visible because time seems to be compressed..enough so that they our memory can still access the high freq of coincidences..see patterns etc… but of course, the ego would be tempted to say that it was the one responsible for painting the sequence of events. So to me, through synchronicity in virtuals, I am reminded of this deeper truth: virtual worlds provides an opportunity to be aware of interconnectedness because we a ‘perceptual/relative as in: not in fact but as a feeling’ wider temporal FOV as events seem to unfold more rapidly.
You eat a lot of acid, Pathfinder, back in the hippie days?
I wasn’t alive back then. But I grooved to a lot of weird movies in the 80’s. Hence, my fascination with ones like Repo Man.
Plate o’ Shrimp
Virtual World always reminds me of my Apprentice days where every 3 months you had to adjust to a new environment that had different cultures and characters in real life. I spent 5 years just learning and obsevering people, processes and how they create and develop innovative ideas and put them into practice in the aerospace industry. Seeing in real-time 3D you experience much more than the 2D world of books, lectures, etc. Nothing compares to the real thing but the new Virtual Worlds with high definition and interaction is becoming closer to it. It needs the animation, sfx, and AI to really blow the imagination. I always remember people saying “if you can do that” then you must be able to do this; and we all would gasp; and if you could do that, lets go to the pub and get the fag packets out.
I’ve noticed a correlation between how I am feeling (great, good, bad, pissed, etc) and the speed with which synchronicity seems to manifest in my life. It seems to me that the further down you move on the negative emotion scale, the more blocked you are to synchronicity, or at least to seeing & experiencing it. So, I wonder.. perhaps when people join their virtual worlds, they are more likely to be feeling positive emotions (happy to be stepping away from the outside world and everyday stress, thrilled to be amongst like-minded folks, having fun with their freedom of play) thus opening themselves up to, and expediting, the synchronicity that already exists.
I’ve never thought about that correlation before. Great observation. There’s definitely a sense of childlike joy that seems to be consistently cultivated in virtual worlds. You feel like a kid, able to shape everything around your with your imagination. And since that’s a joy that we typically lose when we grow up, I think there’s even more joy in us when we realize we’ve magically reclaimed it.
Going back to the reference to Jungian archetypes. My sense is that we are in closer connection to our deeper archetypes in avatar form. Because these are powerful and intrinsically connected to the collective subconscious of course they pull more rabbits out of the hat for us – synchronicity and serendipity abound.
The really neat thing is that once this starts happening for us in virtual experience it ups our ability to do the same in RL. Making a big difference to my life in all realities!
Excellent point. Jungian archetypes are powerful, indeed. And very interesting to think about how the things that happen to us in a virtual world bleed over into our real lives.
I role-played online way back when. I spent two years in regular sessions with another player in a virtual environment. Then circumstances happened and we lost touch.
Eleven years later, in response to some mainstream media piece, new Second Life users are appearing in Waterhead at a difficult-to-manage rate. Pretty much all of the active and available Second Life mentors are there (about 9 of us at that time), but new users are appearing at the rate of three or four per minute, struggling and asking questions.
We’re taking people aside and trying to get them oriented enough to move around, and moved away from the thickening crowd into groups that one mentor (or the occasional fast-learning new-user) can help out en masse. Five of us are working at the newly-rezzed crowd, and four are working groups further back. I’m taking down names of the people I talk to and many befriend me, so that I can check in on them in the coming hours or days and see what help they need.
One of the ones I tagged, I discover some weeks later, turns out to be that other player from that other environment more than a decade ago.
The odds of that are astronomical.
About a year later, I’m talking to one of my SL friends. He was separated at birth from his twin and adopted out. He lives on the other side of the world. After some exhaustive searching, he finds the location of his twin, and excitedly tells me the details. It turns out to be a close friend of mine (whom I’ve *slept* with, for heaven’s sake).
This time last year, I go to meet one of my editors in the flesh for the first time. He’s in town for a conference.
I and my partner approach the area where we are to meet, and see two people talking. She recognizes one as someone whom she hasn’t seen in 14 years and had sadly lost contact with. The person he’s talking to is my editor.
After catching up a little more, it turns out that he also is an SL user, and so is his partner who just happens to be from my old social circle in my home town, whom I have not seen in about 25 years.
And this sort of thing *keeps on happening*.
I love hearing stories like this. Simply amazing.
Here’s my favorite personal story. Back when I worked for Linden Lab, I had an inworld office space in Second Life. I filled it with all kinds of odd things that caught my fancy. I’m a huge MST3K fan, so I had on display a model of an Interociter from “MST3K: The Movie.”
One day an avatar was randomly visiting my office and poking around. He said, “I see you like Interociters.” I told him how happy I was that someone actually recognized the thing and how much I was a fan of the TV series. The guy replied “Well, I was the producer of tv series, so I’m happy you’re a fan of the show!”
The guy was Jim Mallon.
I dunno. its like finding Star Trek fans at a Comic Con…
this is surprising how?:)
“I need my Pain” Cpt. Kirk Star Trek V.
Or finding Tolkien fans in “Lord of the Rings Online” ? 😉
I’m reminded of the story of the very successful fisherman. He was asked “What’s your trick for catching so many fish?” He replied, “Well, I just cast my net where all the fish are.”
Sure, there are themed virtual worlds that act as natural aggregators for folks with common interests.
But it’s the general-purpose virtual worlds, the ones that allow you to shape your own identity, environment and goals from scratch, that I’m talking about.
even un-themed VW create opportunity for like minded people to connect (perhaps not for the first time). Even more so in the parts of SL that have been made with a theme.
My Father and I are the opposite. I showed SL to my Dad about a month after I rezzed. He quickly joined up. While we are on each other’s friends list, we don’t do much more than IM family things like “See you at dinner sunday – bringing Mashed Potatoes”.
In fact, except for occasions that we pre-arranged via RL discussion, we have never met in VW. We travel in completely different circles. I am willing to bet that none of my friends know any of his friends, even though I often tell him of wonderful places and experiences i have in-world. We simply have different interests.
This is what brings people together AND sets them apart.
so was i. 😉
“Language is not only the medium, by which all our thoughts, feelings, emotions, and ideas are obtained from and communicated to others, but language is the instrument by which the mind itself acts. This is so true, that we think in words, we cannot reason or reflect, except by words. They are the very material on which the mind works, and the implements with which it works. ”
Judge L. Shaw
in Virtuality, we are all forced to exist by the machines terms. So either you meet those who accept , deny or are oblivious to that. Star Trek, LOR or Ballet ? it really dosent matter, all languages become a digital pig latin, dependent on the secret decoder ring.
BTW- did you see Scott Pilgrim vs The World?
Electronic Shakespeare for the next 400 years? Was it Spoken Languages final media (film) handing off humanity into a world of the postliterate virtuality?
No, I haven’t seen Scott Pilgrim vs The World. Now I am even more intrigued to see it.
“The unique malleability of objects, identity and environments in Virtual Worlds gives us the ability to more deeply reflect and share ourunconscious mind with other human beings. “
Add to this the speed of communication involved, that didn’t exist before and that multiplies the sychronis posiblities as well. Once you had to send a letter or watch the news to know what was going on across the world, now with TV, and the internet we can know about others almost instantaiously. I sometimes feel strongly that this sychronistic behavior is an example of the collective mind at work. We as humans create life , metaversally or in our paralell existance that we call real life, that is not digitally centered.
I think that the concept of synchronicity works best if you don’t treat it too concretely. It’s a good way to think about how humans perceive their environment, rather than an accurate description of what is actually going on within that environment. I’m sure that all the examples given above can be explained by reference to selective memory, cognitive distortion and a poor grasp of the laws of probability, rather than any mystical lattice of coincidence.
I would say that the coincidences themselves are actually quite trivial, and it is the meaning that people read into them that is interesting.
If it is the case that virtual worlds produce more of these synchronicity experiences than everyday life, then I think that probably has something to do with the relatively crude nature of the environmental cues within a virtual world, which leaves a lot of ambiguity that can be filled in by the imagination.
I agree that these experiences (or rather the attribution of meaning to these experiences) are unconsciously driven, but I don’t think they have much to do with any interaction between the unconscious parts of different people. Rather, they are firmly rooted in the individual unconscious, and represent internal object-relations being played out in virtual space through a process of projection.
In any case when Jung referred to the collective unconscious he wasn’t talking about some combination of individual minds into a greater whole, instead the part of the personal unconscious that does not derive from individual experience, but is inherited, and thus provides a common base for the forms of certain unconscious processes, hence the existence of archetypes.
I think I’m going to side with the folks citing Physics and the laws of this digital framework causing a bias in our collective behavior.
The keyholes through which we see each other also forces a bias on our perception, experience, and reaction.
However, as additional methods of connection open up (new blogs and social networks) while others shut down (tighter forums/blogs restrictions and facebook), those laws under which we all function change… and our connections with others are not always symmetric… or consistent across the range of experiences.
And I suddenly realize that I have no idea what I’m drowning in.
SL engages our most creative selves. what if “creativity” was not a mere talent, or a label for right brain doers, but a phase of brain activity, a heightening of consciousness that allows a “tuning in” of a sorts? Spiritual tradition abounds with examples of how invocation of this creative self causes perceptual shifts where adventurers of imagination travel inward to excavate their deepest Art and share it with the world. Jung found that when he returned to a state of “play” like he recalled as a child, building his Bollingen house in various stages, esp. as a sort of creative therapy after the deaths of his mother and many years later his wife, he came closest to the idea of individuation that he touted as the ultimate synchronizing of the personal and the collective unconsciousness. And when he was disgorged of his creative self, there was that dark time that yielded the Red Book wherein he rediscovered his sense of self.
Building identities and houses and lands in SL engages the same sense of playtime we all remember from childhood, a very magical time you must agree. Projecting fictional personalities into avatars who populate landscapes created by others is the ultimate, collaborative playtime, full of invisible friends, imaginary places, adventures . . . as well as a few delusions of grandeur. Does this playtime in the pixel puppet theater “activate” our creativity in ways that incite conclusions of synchronicity? Or do we just imagine it does? Non-local timelessness will tell.
I like your thoughts. =)
For “Does this playtime in the pixel puppet theater “activate” our creativity in ways that incite conclusions of synchronicity? Or do we just imagine it does?” I’ve come to believe that the “do we imagine it does”, a question I often asked myself in the past, presents a false dichotomy.
If we have imagined it, then it *is*.. it’s real. When we express what we’ve imagined and others share the vision, that adds “dimension” (“aspects”? not sure what word I want here) to it. When we and/or others remain captivated by what we’ve imagined such that they manipulate material to give it a form perceivable by the body’s senses, that adds more “dimension” or whatever.
It’s just that it seems so many people believe that that last stage representing “form” is the only one that means “it’s real”.
On the other hand, that “form” stage is a great one for recruiting others to share our vision =)
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i had just met a noob avie who showed up at my workshop on New Caerleon. turns out that he had been surfing the web and had stumbled across a couple of my videos on youtube. he was astounded that by following SL’s “Search” he had actually found the “set” for the video that he had watched on youtube. he totally “got” what i was doing, which is so rare, and of course this is the reason why we go through the whole exercise. so as i friend him and we get to know each other i find out that he is working on projects very similar to the ones i am doing in SL. he’s a noob so i show him the basics of building and some tricks and he makes the most amazing avatar i’ve ever seen in SL. then i show him some of my advanced building tools and techniques and he comes back with the most amazing constructions. basically, now we are working together. we are “Unexpectedly Collaborating.” next thing you know i’m talking to White Lebed and i’m arranging to get an SL7B parcel. i have no idea while i’m doing this what the theme is. i have the parcel and i’m talking to my friend and i just ask him if he would like to collaborate on it. he’s excited by this and says “Sure.” Shortly thereafter i find out that the theme of SL7B is “Unexpected Collaborations” and that was soooooo appropriate that i couldn’t stand it! my collaborator’s name was/is Polagirus Paragorn.
Outstanding! And it’s very interesting how it all started with him watching your videos on YouTube. Virtual Worlds extend and embrace many other mediums of expression. And so the lattice of coincidence grows. 🙂
While your theories are interesting, allow me to put my own personal spin on this. In RL, things are extremely structured. There is a time for everything; a time to wake, a time to eat, a time to learn, a time to work, and so on. Sure, when you are young, the possibilities might seem endless, but you learn very quickly as time goes on that if you don’t do things in the way that is prescribed, then you will never get to the end of the path. If you wander from the path, you will get lost. Structure is a creativity killer. People become robots.
In my own case, I rejected structure in school, but was still an A student. College did not agree with me as now I was paying some1 to tie me to their structure. I craved to learn and really felt like college was just way too slow. I felt as if every1 was trying to fit me into a box. My work life after I left was no different. If I was not advancing, I did not want to be there, but of course I stuck it out because of bills, lol.
No1 in the real world was like me. I had no1 to even relate to my sense of being continuously caged. Then I found SL. In this amazing world, I had no restrictions. Nothing was in my way that I could not easily leap over. In this world, every1 was kinda like me, or at least alot more than in the real world, which finally brings me to my point. Coincidenses happen alot because the opportunities for them to happen were much more likely. To me, it is just a matter of favorable probabilities.
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New research on unconscious cues, empathy and avatars. http://bit.ly/d8r38W
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