73% of American teens are actively exploring the occult

LVX23 points out an excellent Sploid article that I missed:

A shocking new study finds that 73 percent of American teens are experimenting with the occult.

[...]

“Teenagers relish experiences and the supernatural world provides fertile ground for their explorations,” the Barna Group report says. “In fact, three-quarters of America?s youth have engaged in at least one type of psychic or witchcraft-related activity, beyond mere media exposure or horoscope usage.”

[...]

More than a third of the surveyed teens have communicated with entities using Ouija boards, another third have studied witchcraft rituals, and 25 percent enjoy role-playing games about sorcery and demonology.

Some are even more serious about the occult: 1 in 10 has taken part in a real s?ance and 1 in 12 has actually cast spells or made magical potions.

[...]

Secular researchers say today’s teenagers just aren’t content to watch or listen to anything without getting involved. Interactive video games, the Internet, iPods, blogs and “fan fiction” have put kids in control of their media, deciding what they’ll take from outside sources and what they’ll invent for themselves — unlike the “couch potatoes” who watch whatever’s on television or the “pew potatoes” who blindly follow the commands of the local preacher.

Full Story: Sploid.

8 Comments

  1. Err…

    A shocking study conducted by the Barna Group, a research firm for fundamentalist Christian churches, proves what Christian evangelicals have long feared: “Satan is real, and his dark forces are out to corrupt your children!”

    I must question what is meant by “actively exploring the occult” if a study includes roleplaying games and Ouija boards as examples of such “deviant” behaviour.

  2. can one passively explore the occult? I’m feeling lazy

  3. I must question what is meant by ?actively exploring the occult? if a study includes roleplaying games and Ouija boards as examples of such ?deviant? behaviour.

    I think that Ouija is, like Rev Max said, “like unlocking the security door in a bad neighborhood.” And both me & him have had crackdealer neighbors.

    Actually, there’s an interview where Doug Rushkoff goes at length to state that despite the rape and pillage factor of, e.g., Dungeons and Dragons, it still forces, more or less, players to explore alternative realities, thereby engaging their imaginations, thinking up new possiblities, etc. In personal experience, I’ve found that there’s a high geek-revenge right-wing factor tempered with imagination amoung the guys who hang out at comic shops, but there’s something to it.

  4. I’m not sure how seriously to take this fundamentalist conducted poll either. And while 1/3 of the kids polled had studied withcraft rituals, only about 1/12 had actually cast a spell.

    For the record, I consider Ouiji and RPGs invocation, but I also consider writing, acting, and pretty much all creative activity invocation. It’s just un-intentional magic.

  5. Ouija is also a board game produced by Parker Brothers, thought by most to be nothing more than harmless fun.

    To turn this around a bit: I’ve just polled a group of kids, asking if they play Monopoly. Suppose that 70% say yes. Would it be fair to turn around to suggest that 70% of today’s youth are actively exploring the world of high finance and venture capitalism?

    Though I still think that magic is pulling rabbits out of top hats, sawing pretty girls in half, and making coins disappear… so, yes…

  6. Since when did Brennio become the voice of reason?

  7. “Ouija is also a board game produced by Parker Brothers, thought by most to be nothing more than harmless fun.”

    Which is why I grouped it with RPGs, acting, and writing.

  8. I was pointing that more at the Ultimate Nullifier. I should have said something about D&D being mostly played by people who hate that they are associated with the occult while I was at it, but… eh…

    I’m the king of reason, Szul!

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