Wednesday, August 15, 2007

4x more psychics than priests in europe

I tend to think of European godlessness as being part of a protracted Enlightenment: I imagine the Continent populated by innumerable Voltaires and Rousseaus. But this op-ed in the International Herald Tribune (stumbled on via Google's news leder) puts a different spin on things. Apparently interest in the occult, the paranormal, and diviniation is thriving in France and elsewhere. Some disturbing excerpts:

EU Commission research indicates that 52 percent of Europeans believe astrology has a scientific basis compared to a more skeptical United States and Britain, at about 31 percent each.

The main French professional clairvoyance organization, INAD (Institut National des Arts Divinatoire) says some 100,000 men and women are practicing clairvoyants in France today. This is about four times the number of Roman Catholic priests. INAD estimates that about €3.2 billion are spent annually on their advice.

You can read the rest of it here.

I suppose this is hardly surprising. Having declared God to be unscientific, science is discovering itself to be unscientific, meaning unable to provide a ground of being explanation for the world. Why wouldn't people tend to drift back towards something--even if it's anything--that would give some semblance of purpose and meaning to their lives.

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