from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Paranormal as an adjective, substantives paranormality ( Greek παρά para , in the figurative sense 'against', 'against', in comparison with '' next to ') denotes something that cannot be explained in a natural way or something supersensible .

The Parapsychology deals with the research supposedly paranormal phenomena ( psi phenomena ).


Paranormal beliefs


In a 2007 UK poll of 1,005 respondents believe it

  • in telepathy 41%,
  • to ghosts 38%,
  • that it is possible to receive messages from the dead 32%,
  • to witches and wizards 13%,
  • that certain magic words or sayings can have actual effects 12%,
  • that some crop circles are the work of extraterrestrial forces 9%.


Paranormal beliefs do not necessarily arise from events experienced as paranormal. For example, of the above-mentioned 38%, only about a third said they had seen a ghost. Because they are incompatible with empirically verifiable facts that are largely accepted in society, paranormal beliefs are to be seen in the general population as misperceptions or misjudgments of reality. That is, these beliefs are largely generated in response to emotional needs and are not subjected to a rational assessment through a comparison with reality.

Interpretation of experiences

A distinction can be made between an unusual, so-called abnormal experience (e.g. "I had the impression of a figure nearby, although no one could have been there") and the interpretation of this experience as paranormal. For example, people who have had an abnormal experience can give a non-paranormal explanation ("my senses have played a trick on me") or a paranormal explanation ("I have perceived a ghost"). In a study of 307 participants, almost all (306) reported having had at least one abnormal experience. However, only 47 participants (15%) interpreted at least one experience as paranormal.

The persons concerned are characterized by certain characteristics. Both the susceptibility to abnormal experiences and the susceptibility to paranormal interpretations are each correlated with the symptom of unusual perceptual experiences of schizotypy , with the tendency to provide emotional evidence and with the tendency not to test thoughts and feelings against reality. However, only the susceptibility to paranormal interpretations is associated with a low level of self-regulation .

Individual evidence

  1. paranormal ,, accessed on November 23, 2012
  2. a b Survey on Beliefs. Retrieved January 8, 2019 (UK English).
  3. Irwin, Harvey J; Dagnall, Neil; Drinkwater, Kenneth: Paranormal beliefs and cognitive processes underlying the formation of delusions . In: Australian Journal of Parapsychology . tape 12 , no. 2 , 2012 ( [PDF]).
  4. Irwin, HJ, Schofield, MB and Baker, IS: Dissociative tendencies, sensory processing sensitivity and aberrant salience as predictors of anomalous experiences and paranormal attributions . In: Journal for the Society of Psychical Research . tape 78 , no. 917 , p. 193-206 .
  5. Irwin, HJ, Dagnall, N. and Drinkwater, K .: Parapsychological experience as anomalous experience plus paranormal attribution: a questionnaire based on a new approach to measurement. In: The Journal of Parapsychology . tape 77 , 2013, p. 39-53 .