Summer Solstice and Spooky Synchronicities

June 22, 2009

This week I’m going to explore the phenomenon of synchronicity. To illustrate this concept, over the next couple of days I’m going to describe a strange event which happened over the course of this weekend. I’m sure it’s no coincidence 🙂 that this occurred a) around the time of the solstice and b) after I’d decided that I would write some blogs on synchronicity this week.

My first synchronicity

Last week I finally completed the first article for my main site. The article is about the difficulties which can occur in your life through being an unaware empath. One of the issues I discuss in this feature is how the empath can end up carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders. Here is what I wrote:

Our empathy is not just limited to those around us – it’s also global. The empath can hardly bear to watch violence and will weep for the pain and suffering in the world. Your high level of compassion means that you probably find it impossible to comprehend the cruelty, ignorance and narrow minded attitudes of others. I remember my dad telling me as a child that Pete Duel, who I loved to watch in the 70s TV show   ‘Alias Smith and Jones’, had killed himself because ‘he took the weight of the world on his shoulders’, and as I grew up I began to realise why I had been strangely drawn to this man, as I too experienced some of the pain Pete must have felt.

Whilst writing and researching this article, I decided to find out a bit more about Pete Duel, and was intrigued to discover that he had many of the traits of the unaware empath. This prompted me to consider writing an article about Pete, outlining these traits and using his life and tragic death as an extreme example of what can happen to someone who is unaware of their high level of empathy.

When I’d finished working for the day, I talked about Pete’s life and death with my partner, Lawrence, and during the course of our conversation, we both agreed that it was a shame that “Alias Smith and Jones” hadn’t been on TV for a while, as we’d both really enjoyed it when we were kids. I suggested that we order a DVD of the show, so that’s what we did. This duly arrived last Friday and we ended up watching the pilot show that very same evening.

The same day that the DVD arrived, I also received a book I’d ordered called What a Coincidence!: Understanding Synchronicity in Everyday Life by Susan M. Watkins.  After watching the DVD, I took the book to bed with me to read, and whilst reading, I thought to myself “Wouldn’t it be funny if there was some strange coincidence relating to me and my life actually in this book?”  After reading the first 50 pages, I began to feel tired, but thought I’d press on and read just one more chapter before going to sleep. So I turned to the next page … only to find this:

“I have a very odd thing to tell you,” he says by way of greeting. Hugh was not prone to collecting “odd things” willy-nilly, so when he noticed them you could be sure they’d be interesting. I grab a nearby memo pad and pencil and say, “What is it?”

Well, Hugh says, the thing is – did I remember his description years ago about his strong feelings of connection with Peter Deuel, (sic – the original spelling of hisname) the actor and co-star of “Alias Smith and Jones”, the early-seventies TV western? Right from the first show, Deuel seemed…familiar. As if Hugh recognised him from…somewhere. Not a physical somewhere, though Deuel was in fact originally from Rochester, New York, a hundred and twenty miles north of Hugh’s Elmira home. “It was something like a past-life thing,” Hugh tells me, “but not exactly that, either.” He goes on to reiterate his feeling (which he’d explained to me before) that this was further connected with Hugh’s attachment to Bluff Point, the majestic peninsula that juts out between the branches of good old Y-shaped Keuka Lake, and to Hugh’s lifelong dream of building a fly-in motel on top of this bluff. “So it was definitely more than some kind of fan worship,” Hugh adds, “but I never could quite define what. It was very peculiar and strong.”

To say I was utterly gobsmacked by this would be an understatement! My whole body was covered in goosebumps as I jolted wide awake, and I was unable to sleep for another two hours. The synchronicity of me reading this paragraph, having not only just watched “Alias Smith and Jones” again for the first time in about 30 years, but having also spent the previous  couple of days contemplating the life of this particular actor who had died almost 40 years ago, was just too overwhelming.  Pete Duel is rarely – if ever – mentioned in the public domain these days, plus I must have over a thousand other books, yet I have never seen his name in any of those. Also, there was a nine day interval between me placing the order for Susan Watkins’ book and the Smith and Jones DVD, yet both arrived on the same day. What made this experience even stranger was that this man, Hugh, was describing the exact same feeling that I had about Pete and which I wrote about that very week in my article – a strong sense of connection which he was initially hard pressed to explain.

Another odd little coincidence attached to this incident is that on the same day that these two items arrived, the Father’s Day card I’d ordered for my dad – the person who told me about Pete’s death – also turned up in the same postal delivery. This card was a spoof film publicity poster – and inside were the words ‘To a screen legend’…

pete duel




  1. […] instance, I intuitively feel that the Pete Duel synchronicity I shared with you on Monday relates to my work and consequently my life purpose. The story of this […]

  2. Whoa. That is awesome. 🙂 Actually, just finding the two posts I’ve read today on your blog is synchronous for me. I’ve been fairly well obsessed with thinking about an old friend the past few days – someone I was sure was out of my life for good… but someone who is “due” to reappear, actually. I came online looking for stories from other people about these feelings of significant connection – it has been one of the most significant connections of my entire life… yet we have spent most of our lives out of contact. What’s that about!? And why am I thinking of him suddenly again all these years later? Well, there are more details, but I won’t bore you with them… just to say that your posts have hit on several features, and I think it synchronous that I came across your blog today. So thanks. 🙂

    • Thanks for your comment, Amy – how wonderful that my synchronicity blog was a synchronicity for you! I hope it worked out for you with your friend – I’d be really interested to hear how it went so feel free to bore away with those details 🙂

  3. I am an empath, was unconscious one for years yet PETE DEUEL was my idol ( I live in L.A.) in my childhood/early teen years. Felt a connection now I know why. VERY interesting ty for sharing.

    • Wow, really cool that someone else identified with Pete Duel in the same way as myself. It’s definitely worth reading more stuff about him (although no doubt you already have!) – I’m going to devote a post to him at some point in the future as the recognition that he was clearly empathic really struck a chord with me. I also mention him here https://empathicguidance.wordpress.com/2012/05/28/on-being-an-empath-part-one/
      Thank you for your comment, Robin 🙂

  4. I have has several “coincidental’ things happen to me in regards to Peter myself. I think he is globally infecting those who loved him and we are all finding each other and becoming connected through his efforts. That may sound bizarre but I believe it’s true. Thanks so much for sharing your experience. It validates some things for me.

    • Hi Karen – I agree, I think Peter was ‘one of us’ and his influence can still be felt – the synchronicities around him certainly seem to bear this out. Would love to hear more about your coincidences relating to him. I plan on writing a more detailed article about him in the future. So glad the article resonated with you. Warmest wishes, Sharon

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