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Survey finds that millions believe in spirit contact


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A SURVEY conducted for Sky has found that four in ten adults in the UK believe those who have passed on can contact the living.

      SOME people believe that seeing a feather is a sign of a spirit presence.
SOME people believe that seeing a feather
is a sign of a spirit presence.

Whether or not they had seen or felt anything, over half the respondents said they think “dead” loved ones never leave us and their presence is always around.

“A poll commissioned ahead of the new supernatural crime thriller The Rising found millions of Brits believe their lives have been touched by spirits,” said The Sun.

“Many believe birds and feathers are signs departed loved ones are near. And 63 per cent say they’ve received signals or signs from friends or family who have died.”

The top signs of sensing a spirit presence included pets behaving strangely or smelling a particular scent without knowing where it’s coming from.

A quarter of those who took part in the survey said they felt a spiritual sign had helped them to make the right choice at some point in life.

The Sun added, “Securing a job, marriage proposals, watching over them through illness or injury and travelling the world are among the ways they have felt guided by a deceased loved one.”

Sky’s mini-series The Rising focuses on a character called Neve Kelly, who returns from the afterlife determined to solve her own murder. The programme is an adaptation of the Belgian thriller Hotel Beau Sejour.

To mark the launch of the series, an image of Neve as a spirit being emerging from the waters of Derwentwater in the Lake District was formed using a holographic projection.

It was created by Kaleida, one of the world’s leading hologram production companies. Kaleida producer Ben Lawrence said: “We’ve worked on many original ideas over the years.

“This piece for Sky has been a lot of fun, but it also shows that for many people, not just characters in The Rising, their loved ones who have passed continue to have a tangible presence in their lives.”

Cara Ruggard, who plays Neve Kelly, said: “When we first started working on this show, I could never have imagined that I would be transformed into a holographic ‘ghost.’

“Playing a spirit gave me a new perspective on life and death. It’s been really interesting to see how many people across the UK also believe in the afterlife.”

The survey found that 62 per cent who accept life after death believe they have experienced the presence of a spirit being.

Promotional image for 'The Rising' (Photo: SKY)
Promotional image for 'The Rising'
(Photo: SKY)

More than a third – 39 per cent – accept the reality of paranormal activity because of accounts they have heard from other people.

Forty-six per cent think they have been contacted by a “dead” relative. A further seventeen per cent have seen lights flicker without an explanation and more than one in ten heard talking or crying out in a house from an unknown source.

It also emerged one in four of those who believe in survival after death are convinced they have a sixth sense and the ability to see and experience messages from the spirit world.

Additionally, one in five of those who had experienced a spiritual presence first-hand said they felt a “bodily sensation” such as being brushed past.

Conducted via OnePoll, the survey found that 46 per cent of adults like the idea of loved ones being able to reach them after passing on. Fifty-two per cent continue to talk to them as if they were still on Earth.

Serena Thompson, an executive producer at Sky Studios, said that The Rising takes a fresh, modern look at how the afterlife might interact with the physical world.

“It’s fascinating to see how many people believe in ghosts and have had experiences of the supernatural,” she added.

“In The Rising, the differing experiences of Neve’s parents are integral to the show, and love and loss are explored from the unique perspective of the person who has died.”

The top ten signs that people believe indicate a spirit presence were listed as:

Sensing a presence in the room – 27 per cent

Household pets and dogs behaving strangely – 23 per cent

      survey opinion research voting fill vote hand

Smelling perfume or a particular scent and not knowing what it’s from – 22 per cent

Feeling someone touch you when no-one is present – 21 per cent

Seeing symbols of a spirit presence, such as birds, crows, butterflies, feathers, etc – 21 per cent

Items falling by themselves e.g. a book falling over on a shelf or a framed picture falling off the wall – 20 per cent

Feeling a “shudder” – 18 per cent

Hearing a voice when alone – 17 per cent

Getting goosebumps – 17 per cent

Feeling drawn back to places which were important to someone who has passed on – 16 per cent


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