Guy's Reviews > There Are No Accidents

There Are No Accidents by Robert H. Hopcke
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's review
Nov 12, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: multiple-reads
Read in February, 2004

This is an excellent introduction to synchronicity! When I read it, I was well past requiring an intro to the concept, and hence my 4 star rating. However, included in the book is a fascinating example of a monastic society using synchronicity to choose their abbot.
...these monks choose an abbot by drawing lots from among the [names of every member of the monastery:]: after prayer and ritual, a senior member of the community uses chopsticks to pick out a name from a metal tube, and the person whose name is drawn three times in a row — from among the [scores:] possible — is acknowledged as the abbot. As one might imagine, this time consuming process, which the community continues for as long as it takes unit the thrice-chosen name appears, can sometimes eventuate in the selection of a person whom the community initially perceives as a bad or problematic candidate. But even when almost universally acknowledged inferior individuals have been chosen, this method nevertheless seems consistently to have worked: to the community's surprise, such "inferior" individuals have proven themselves capable leaders, which points up the elegance of such a method in which pure chance — free from the influence of human prejudice, envy, malice, and ambition — is better at providing for the community's leadership than any mortal could have been (p208).

I used this in a rumination on the current electoral process, with an eye to changing it, on my blog @

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