More Czechs believe in aliens than in God, but more have started thinking about spiritual matters thanks to pandemic

Around a fifth of people living in the Czech Republic believe in God and just over a third in some sort of higher being. Meanwhile, 23 percent do not believe at all, according to a new STEM/Mark survey commissioned by the Christian NGO Maranatha.

Women over the age of 60 are the most significant group in Czech society that believes in God. Belief is also most common in the region of Moravia, according to the survey.

Nearly a half of all respondents said that they started believing in God thanks to their family and 57 percent said that they were believers already before they reached adulthood.

The survey was commissioned by the Christian NGO Maranatha, which is headed by Slovak national Juraj Turóci.

“I was happy about the results, but I had hoped that interest in God would be even higher, because one does get that impression when talking to people. Those who tell us they don’t usually mention some past experience with the Church or just the Church as an institution. However, when it comes to the pure spiritual question of faith in God I have had the impression that people are not decidedly against it.”

That there is a spiritual need even among non-believing parts of Czech society was suggested by the fact that a fifth of respondents said that they started thinking about the meaning of life on earth and realised their own finite existence during the coronavirus pandemic.

Nevertheless, while spiritual questions may have become more common among the Czech population thanks to the pandemic, the survey shows that this does not translate into church attendance.

Just 2 percent of respondents said that they go to church once a week, with 57 saying that they go less than once a year. Meanwhile, 7 percent said that they go to church regularly on Christmas.

Another factor that suggests Christian tradition still has a hold even among non-believers is that more than a half of all respondents said that state leaders and important personalities should strive to maintain values that come from the Bible’s 10 commandments. Three quarters of people also said that they believe that bad things will happen to them if they do evil themselves. Belief in some sort of existence after death was not denied by more than 40 percent of those who took part in the survey.

The Bible itself is considered as a historical resource that should not be taken literally by half of all respondents. However, 56 percent admitted that they had never read it.

When asked about which faiths they have basic knowledge of, 73 respondents said Christianity, 71 percent Islam and 60 percent mentioned Buddhism. Hinduism and Judaism were registered as less common answers in the survey.

Meanwhile, nearly 60 percent said that they believe in alien life.