Scientists, inventors, and artists often make the same discovery at about the same time without having communicated with one another. The list of examples includes the 1858 announcement of the discovery of evolution by Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace, and the same-day arrival at the U.S. Patent Office of the inventors of the telephone, Alexander Graham Bell and Elisha Gray.
A comprehensive list of simultaneous discoveries was put together in 1922. The authors, William F. Ogburn and Dorothy Thomas, found 148 major scientific discoveries made by two or more people around the same time. They suggested that every generation produces curious, intelligent, motivated individuals who try to shed light on mystery and help make life easier for others. By integrating the products of previous thinkers with their current knowledge and enthusiasm, they lead the rest of us to the next discovery. They seem to be tuned in to the evolving edges of our collective conscious mind.
To bring the story closer to home, I was having coffee with a few friends at a local Charlottesville coffeehouse when two women known to two of my companions walked in. They sat down and eventually we talked about coincidences. One woman had been a literary agent and smilingly recounted the struggles of several groups of potential authors. “One time five different authors sent me book proposals centered around the same specific idea,” she said. “Each one asked me to be sure not to tell anyone else about this idea.” Zeitgeist, ideas floating around in the air, floating in particular areas of our group mind, our collective conscious.
In this quiet maelstrom of idea energetics comes a simple basic principle: If I am thinking it, someone else is also thinking it.
Each of us is not an island. Our minds are connected in ways that coincidences are helping us to understand. I theorize the existence of our mental atmosphere, the psychosphere, with which we exchange energy and information. We "breathe in" energy-information, and we "breathe out" energy-information. The collective conscious is probably subsumed within the psychosphere. How they link and where they separate requires further conceptualizing.
Your good ideas and your good feelings enter into the psychosphere. Keep developing your psychological and spiritual awareness. You are helping us all!
William F. Ogburn and Dorothy Thomas, “Are Inventions Inevitable? A Note on Social Evolution,” Political Science Quarterly 37, no. 1 (March 1922): 83–98.