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July 14, 2015 2 min read

Bill Nye said it best on a sketch on "Inside Amy Schumer." He explained the purpose of the universe:
"Scientists once believed the universe was a chaotic collection of matter. We now know the universe is essentially a force sending cosmic guidance to white women in their 20s."
Ouch. I remember spending part of my 20's looking for answers in cosmic signs. I'm a poet, I made a habit of it. And admit it, you read your horoscope. Maybe you do so with a cynical mind, but you still do it. Maybe you don't visit fortune tellers but, like me, own a tarot deck. We don't like randomness. We don't like meaninglessness and so we look for reasons, for meaning. Finding a reason for life's events gives us the illusion that we are in control. It is survival. We link unrelated events but when you take a step back and look at the numbers, the reason for coincidences become clear. Martin Plimmer and Brian King, authors of “Beyond Coincidence,” say that if the sample size is large, the likelihood of something happening is increased. Our lives provide a very large sample size of events. When you remember this, the odds of something seemingly random happening are pretty good. Once we become aware of these coincidences, we look for them. We interpret them favourably. We give them meaning. We start looking for a reality to support our expectations and interpret information that confirms those expectations. Patricia Tueme, a rehabilitation specialist at the South End Community Health Center in Boston, illustrated this point perfectly when she tells Elite Daily:
"Example: You were thinking about buying a car. Finally, you are out of Boston, and you need reliable transportation. Suddenly, you notice there are people driving cars EVERYWHERE. You also notice a sudden surplus of car commercials during [a TV] intermission. Is this a cosmic message? Is the universe trying to communicate its plans for you? Nope. Sorry. In your search for causality in a random reality, what you actually did was create a reality around your beliefs. Face it: Everything is a coincidence."
This may shatter your world view, and if it does, you will thank me eventually. You will thank me because now that you know this, you can take control of your own life (take control of your fitness with over 80 hours of on demand workouts available on SweatFlix℠). How much more fulfilling will life be when you make your own choices instead of leaving it up to the cosmos? Do you believe in coincidence or is it all in our heads?    

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