Paranormal events are purported phenomena described in popular culture, folk, and other non-scientific bodies of knowledge, whose existence within these contexts is described as being beyond the scope of normal scientific understanding.[1][2][3][4] Notable paranormal beliefs include those that pertain to extrasensory perception (for example, telepathy), spiritualism and the pseudosciences of ghost hunting, cryptozoology, and ufology.[5]

Proposals regarding the paranormal are different from scientific hypotheses or speculations extrapolated from scientific evidence because scientific ideas are grounded in empirical observations and experimental data gained through the scientific method. In contrast, those who argue for the existence of the paranormal explicitly do not base their arguments on empirical evidence but rather on anecdote, testimony, and suspicion. The standard scientific models give the explanation that what appears to be paranormal phenomena is usually a misinterpretation, misunderstanding, or anomalous variation of natural phenomena.[6][7][8]

  1. ^ "Belief in the Paranormal or Pseudoscience". Archived from the original on 4 February 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2012.
  2. ^ "Paranormal". The Free Dictionary. Retrieved 3 February 2008.
  3. ^ "Paranormal".
  4. ^ "Paranormal". Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Merriam-Webster.
  5. ^ Gordon, Stuart (1993). The Paranormal: An Illustrated Encyclopedia. Trafalgar Square. ISBN 978-0-7472-3603-0.
  6. ^ Marks, D. F. (April 1988). "The Psychology of Paranormal Beliefs". Experientia. 44 (4): 332–7. doi:10.1007/BF01961272. PMID 3282908. S2CID 20803932.
  7. ^ Richard Wiseman (2011). "The Haunted Brain". Retrieved 7 January 2019.
  8. ^ Schmaltz, Rodney M.; Lilienfeld, Scott O. (17 April 2014). "Hauntings, Homeopathy, and the Hopkinsville Goblins: Using Pseudoscience to Teach Scientific Thinking". Frontiers in Psychology. 5: 336. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00336. PMC 4028994. PMID 24860520.