Four out of ten Swedes believe in the supernatural

Published 10 March 2024
- By Editorial Staff
Paranormal ideas are more likely to be embraced by women than by men.

41 percent of Swedish adults believe in some form of paranormal phenomena, according to a new study from Uppsala University. Belief in the supernatural is more common among women than men – but when it comes to ufology, men still dominate.

– The studies are few and far between, and I thought it was time to update the state of knowledge on the extent of various controversial beliefs, such as parapsychological abilities and hauntings. Even if you are an enemy of these activities, it is important to know how many people believe in them, right? says religious researcher Cristoffer Tidelius, who defended his thesis on the subject at Uppsala University.

52 percent of women believe in paranormal phenomena – compared to 37 percent of men – and according to Tidelius, parallels can be drawn with religion and spirituality, areas where more women also believe.

– This could be explained by the fact that several paranormal ideas and practices appeal to traditionally female rather than male qualities, such as a rich inner emotional life, self-knowledge and personal development, intuition, caring for oneself and others. Such qualities are often actively cultivated in alternative spiritual, alternative medicine, and paranormal contexts.

1100 people responded to the questionnaire on which the study is based, and 37 of them were then interviewed in depth. Tidelius has also conducted field studies accompanying “ghost hunters” to various locations in Sweden, trained as a medium, and taken a course to learn more about UFO reports.

“Open Skeptic”

When it comes to ufology, ghost hunting and cryptozoology, there is either an even gender distribution or a male dominance.

– International studies have also shown that men are more likely to believe in UFOs, he says.

Tidelius calls himself an “open skeptic” and says he can’t really say what he believes.

– I experienced certain things in my childhood that I find difficult to explain, but not necessarily inexplicable. I’m pretty agnostic myself, but I find it really fun and exciting. A happy consumer of horror literature and science fiction.

Last year, a similar study was conducted at the University of Gothenburg and came to similar conclusions.

TNT is truly independent!

We don’t have a billionaire owner, and our unique reader-funded model keeps us free from political or corporate influence. This means we can fearlessly report the facts and shine a light on the misdeeds of those in power.

Consider a donation to keep our independent journalism running…