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The supernatural or supranatural (Latin: super, supra "above" + natura "nature") is anything above or beyond what one holds to be natural or exists outside natural law and the observable universe. Science limits its explanations for phenomena to natural explanations, a process known as methodological naturalism, and cannot consider supernatural explanations, as they cannot be investigated empirically. To explain something using natural causes and excluding supernatural causes is to naturalize it. To explain something as resulting from supernatural causes is to supernaturalize it.

Supernatural themes are often associated with paranormal and occult ideas, suggesting the possibility of interaction with the supernatural by means of summoning or trance. In secular societies, religious miracles are typically perceived as supernatural claims, as are spells and curses, divination, and the afterlife. Characteristics for phenomena claimed as supernatural are anomaly, uniqueness, and uncontrollability. Thus, the conditions in which such phenomena are thought to manifest may not be reproducible for scientific examination.

Supernatural phenomena are sometimes referred to as paranormal. The field of study dealing with the supernatural is sometimes called metaphysics or the occult.


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