Canadians believe in angels, ghosts
This poll certainly shows Canadian spirituality
That's the spirit: Many Canadians believe in angels, ghosts
MISTY HARRIS, CanWest News Service
Published: 10 hours ago
Though Johnny Walker and Jack Daniel make fine enough company on New Year's Eve, on most days, Canadians put their faith in spirits of a very different variety.
According to a national survey of 1,000 adults, fully two-thirds of Canadians believe in angels (66 per cent) and nearly half believe in spirits and ghosts (48 per cent).
Another 10 per cent of people are convinced their own residence is home to a supernatural presence.
"To put it in perspective," reports pollster Ipsos Reid, "that's 2.5 million Canadians who believe that when something goes bump in the night, it's more than the (rodents) from Ratatouille." Barbara Smith, the B.C. author of more than a dozen books of ghost stories, says the results confirm what she's anecdotally known to be true for years.
"One in 10 sounds really high, but from the interviews I've done, that number does fit with what people think," Smith said.
"After all my research, I'm convinced there's something out there that we don't fully understand." Most surprising to Smith was the fact Atlantic Canada didn't lead the country in either belief in the paranormal or belief that a supernatural presence was in the respondent's home.
The region ranked fourth behind Alberta, Ontario and Saskatchewan/Manitoba when it came to a believing there was a spirit in their home.
As for belief in the paranormal generally, Atlantic Canada ranked fourth behind Saskatchewan/Manitoba, Alberta and B.C., respectively.
"When I phoned to get Maritimes stories (of hauntings), it almost seemed like if you didn't have a ghost, your house wasn't much of a home," Smith said.
"I think it's the history of the sea and so many deaths ... the Titanic sank just off the coast of Newfoundland." The survey, commissioned by CanWest News Service and Global Television, found women are far more likely to believe in angels than men: 75 per cent compared with 56 per cent.
Age, however, had little influence over Canadians' faith in spiritual beings, with those 35 to 54 only slightly more likely to believe in angels (68 per cent) than their older (65 per cent) and younger (64 per cent) counterparts.
A gender bias also was evident when it came to belief in spirits and ghosts: 53 per cent of women believe, compared with 42 per cent of men.
Age was more relevant in this category, with younger (54 per cent) and middle-age Canadians (52 per cent) much more likely to believe than older people (39 per cent).
The CanWest/Global survey was conducted between Dec. 11 and Dec. 13.
It is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.