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WASHINGTON (RNS) The vast majority of U.S. residents may be Christian, but nearly a quarter of them delve into a range of Eastern or New Age beliefs, a new study shows.
Asked about their supernatural experiences, significant minorities of American Christian respondents said they believe in astrology (23 percent), reincarnation (22 percent), spiritual energy in physical things like trees or crystals (23 percent) and yoga as a spiritual practice (21 percent).
The survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life found that Christians are about as likely as Americans overall to say they’ve been in touch with the dead (29 percent), had an experience with a ghost (17
percent) or consulted a psychic (14 percent).
Overall, the survey found that most Americans have had some connection with the supernatural. More than six in 10 say they have had at least one of these experiences or beliefs, including the “evil eye,”
or the ability to cast spells or curses that do harm.
“With the exception of white evangelicals, majorities of all major religious traditions report holding at least one of these beliefs or having experienced one of these phenomena,” the survey concluded.
The results of the survey, taken by phone Aug. 11-17 and involving a nationwide sample of 4,013 adults, have a margin of error of plus or minus 2.0 percentage points.
By Adelle M. Banks
Copyright 2009 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.

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