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Your Paracast Newsletter — October 2, 2022

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
The Paracast Newsletter
October 2, 2022

Discover the Frontiers of Reality, Synchronicity and Serendipity with Dr. Bernard Beitman on The Paracast

The Paracast is heard Sundays from 3:00 AM until 6:00 AM Central Time on the GCN Radio Network and affiliates around the USA, the Boost Radio Network, the IRN Internet Radio Network, and online across the globe via download and on-demand streaming.

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This Week's Episode: Gene and cohost Tim Swartz explore the frontiers of reality with Bernard Beitman, MD, author of Meaningful Coincidences: How and Why Synchronicity and Serendipity Happen. He writes that each of us has more to do with creating coincidences than we think. In this comprehensive exploration of the potential of coincidences to expand our understanding of reality, he explores why and how coincidences, synchronicity, and serendipity happen and how to use these common occurrences to inspire psychological, interpersonal, and spiritual growth. Exploring the crucial role of personal agency—individual thought and action—in synchronicities and serendipities, Dr. Beitman shows that there’s much more behind these occurrences than “fate” or “randomness.” They can be clues to the functioning of the psychosphere, our mental atmosphere through which many of them happen.

After The Paracast — Available exclusively for Paracast+ subscribers on October 2: Psychiatrist and author Bernard Beitman, MD returns to talk further with Gene and cohostTim Swartz about the definitions of coincidence. He touches on how he recognized his future, the work of Dr. John Mack on UFO abductions, the possible connections with near-death experiences, and even, yes, finding the best bagels when you live way outside of New York. Dr. Beitman is author of Meaningful Coincidences: How and Why Synchronicity and Serendipity Happen. He is reportedly the first psychiatrist since Carl Jung to systematize the study of coincidences. A graduate of Yale Medical School, he did his psychiatric residency at Stanford University. The former chair of psychiatry of the University of Missouri-Columbia medical school for 17 years, he writes a blog for Psychology Today on coincidence and is the coauthor of the award-winning book, “Learning Psychotherapy.”

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Maybe Little or Nothing is Random
By Gene Steinberg

As most listeners to The Paracast know, I don’t dwell so much on my personal experiences, because the show is mainly about our guests and what they have to offer. But I do mention the, from time to time, and how they might have influenced my life to a large extent.

I had the opportunity when we featured a psychiatrist, Bernard Beitman, MD, who wrote a fascinating book entitled “Meaningful Coincidences: How and Why Synchronicity and Serendipity Happen.”

Now perhaps we do tap into a universal consciousness when seemingly unrelated factors come together. So when I first encountered a flying saucer book on a coffee table in my brother’s apartment at age 11, I instinctively grabbed it and began to read it. I hadn’t done anything of that sort before, and never again, because I never saw another book of any sort on his coffee table after that.

My sister-in-law said I could borrow the book so long as I returned it to the library from which my bother got it. And so I did once it was finished. And, as you know, that was just the beginning of a fascinating lifelong adventure.

The book? “Flying Saucers From Outer Space,” by Major Donald E. Keyhoe, published in 1953. And as our readers will recall, it was optioned by a Hollywood studio and very roughly adapted into a sci-fi movie, “Earth Versus the Flying Saucers,” one of the best of such B-movie fare back then.

But Keyhoe was embarrassed at the turn of events, though I’m sure he didn’t turn back the money he received. But it goes to show that, once book rights are acquired by a movie studio, the author(s) have no control over the finished product unless they can somehow gain a degree of production authority. But that rarely happens.

In any case, that unlikely close encounter with a UFO book literally changed my life. It led me to an ongoing interest in both Ufology and, for that matter, in sci-fi. It led to my meeting my closest friends over the years, and, indeed, to my first marriage.

All from reading one flying saucer book as a preteen.

The marriage? Well, at age 16, I wrote a letter to the editor of a fantasy comic book, “Forbidden Worlds” that was published in an issue published a few months later. I was living in Brooklyn, NY at the time. A 13-year-old girl in Alabama named Geneva read that letter, and sent a response to the magazine hoping it would reach me.

Which it did. We became pen pals and married five years later. Although we broke up a decade later, it was on a friendly basis and we’ve stayed in contact through the years.

For that unlikely relationship to have occurred, it meant that one person in one state had to, first, get a letter published in a comic book, and a second person in another state reading it and deciding to send a response.

And, of course, for the editors of the magazine to forward that letter to me. A lot of coincidences had to play out for this to occur.

My second marriage, in 1976, also had a curious factor attached to it.

We had both signed up with a dating service, and one day I received a list of women with whom I might be compatible. I went through the list, calling them one by one and finding no connection. Until I came to the last name on the list.

We talked for a while and talked about ourselves. When I suggested we meet somewhere, she worried about the difference in our heights. She stood just above five feet and I was six foot two. But when I mentioned that my brother, the same height as I, married a woman the same height as she, she relented. We had a date the following Saturday, and the Saturday after that and so on.

But it doesn’t end there. And this is something I didn’t mention on the show when I described personal experiences involving possible coincidences: A week or two after I received that list, the dating service went out of business. It’s almost as if it was around strictly to get us together before it’s purpose was fulfilled. All right, that’s a stretch, but it was an interesting development.

Barbara and I were married a few months later.

It’s easy to say some things just happen and leave it there. I’d be inclined to agree with you except that, on occasion, seeming unrelated events have come together in other surprising ways.

Such as the time in 1970 when I was living on employment and seeking a new radio job. On the day I picked up my last check, the manager of a station called me and hired me on the spot. I was offered a salary substantially higher than the one I received from the station that decided it no longer needed my services.

A stroke of luck? Whatever it was, that unexpected offer came at just the right time.

Or the occasion when a regular guest on my tech radio show, The Tech Night Owl LIVE, was talking with me after I finished recording an interview with him. He mentioned an interest in UFOs and, after an extended discussion, we agreed to create what became The Paracast. It all just came together.

I discontinued the tech show in 2019 to focus strictly on The Paracast.

Now as far as the name of the show is concerned, it was originally to be known as Paracast World. We recorded the first two interviews, and during a discussion with one of the guests, the late paranormal writer Brad Steiger, he suggested The Paracast would have a snappier feel to it.

Thanks Brad, wherever you are.

But the ultimate question here is whether I have occasionally tapped into some outside or internal force to guide me in one direction or another. I’ve been known to react with my gut, for better or worse.

The answer is that I just don’t know. Whatever forces may be at play, it got me to where I am now. While my life could have gone in many directions over the years, I like to think things are pretty good right now despite my recent struggles with health issues.

Of course, I can always wonder how things might have turned out if I made some different decisions along the way. But that’s the way it is.

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