Belief in the esoteric grows as people lose control of their lives. It is really a form of taking back illusory control over things that are not in our power to influence. Alternative medicine gains ground over a person once traditional medicine fails to offer hope for solution (and thus a sense of control) the same way conspiracy theories gain ground when the usual world-explanations make one feel painfully helpless.
So when we look at political views of the believers of various nonsense we gain a peek into what motivates them.
Závecz Research conducted a survey on a representative sample of Hungarian voters about their relation to various branches of esoteric nonsense. The results show that around 30% believes in some sort of spiritual or esoteric dogma, such as astrology, alternative medicine, etc. while 35% is ambivalent, and around 30% skeptical.
Esoteric belief systems
Traditional ideas such as reincarnation or astrology have lost ground among Hungarians- with only around 10% of believers – although churchgoers were twice as likely to believe in reincarnation as other spiritual folks. It appears that a taste for traditional, much-repeated dogmas is a constant, not the actual content of the dogma. But for the rest of spiritual folks are embracing new trends – or spike up the Bible with sexy, new ideas from whatever they find elsewhere. It would be a shame to miss out on reincarnation just because you’re a Catholic, right?
- 65% agreed with the statement: “There are spiritual energies unknown to science that are used by faith healers with success“
- 57% agreed with the (Star Wars-inspired) quote that “The energy field of the Universe penetrates everything at the high frequency of love“
- With 45% “We are at the beginning of a new era of spirituality that will change our view of science and spirituality” came third among the nonsensical statements presented to the good folks of Hungary.
- 34% more or less believe that Hungary the heart chakra of the world – an idea that minor authorities of Buddhism, such as the Dalai Llama had laughed at personally
Although esoteric nonsense is regularly dismissed as the silliness of women, men appear to be more devoted – while women appear to be more ambivalent. But the majority of skeptics are also men.
The breakdown is, however, not politically neutral and the strongest correlation is not with age, type of residence, gender or education – but with political party sympathies.
Supporters of Jobbik are the most likely to follow one or more esoteric belief systems – while followers of the governing Fidesz and the previous governing party, MSZP are roughly equally contaminated.
Conspiracy theories saw a strong male dominance (while belief in alternative medicine and the esoteric are gender neutral).
2/3 of Hungarians believe that 9/11 was an inside job – same for the financial crisis (like the financial system needed a conspiracy to collapse…) The rest of the conspiracy theories only enjoyed the belief of the minority of the population.
As of the existence of the malevolent “background power” (the idea is heavily promoted by the government and its media – mostly referring to George Soros) Hungarians are unconvinced. Chemtrail and HAARP are also left behind at around 1/3 of firm or “rather” believers each.
That, however, still means that more people believe in chemtrails than is necessary to gain a 2/3 majority in parliament.
But how 45% believes is rather believes that humans have already met aliens but it is somehow kept secret is beyond me…
And don’t forget – the central bank governor is also a believer.
May the Force be with us…
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