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A miracle is an event not explicable by natural or scientific laws.[106] Such an event may be attributed to a supernatural being (a deity), magic, a miracle worker, a saint or a religious leader.

Informally, the word "miracle" is often used to characterise any beneficial event that is statistically unlikely but not contrary to the laws of nature, such as surviving a natural disaster, or simply a "wonderful" occurrence, regardless of likelihood, such as a birth. Other such miracles might be: survival of an illness diagnosed as terminal, escaping a life-threatening situat

A miracle is an event not explicable by natural or scientific laws.[106] Such an event may be attributed to a supernatural being (a deity), magic, a miracle worker, a saint or a religious leader.

Informally, the word "miracle" is often used to characterise any beneficial event that is statistically unlikely but not contrary to the laws of nature, such as surviving a natural disaster, or simply a "wonderful" occurrence, regardless of likelihood, such as a birth. Other such miracles might be: survival of an illness diagnosed as terminal, escaping a life-threatening situation or 'beating the odds'. Some coincidences may be seen as miracles.[107]

A true miracle would, by definition, be a non-natural phenomenon, leading many rational and scientific thinkers to dismiss them as physically impossible (that is, requiring violation of established laws of physics within their domain of validity) or impossible to confirm by their nature (because all possible physical mechanisms can never be ruled out). The former position is expressed for instance by Thomas Jefferson and the latter by David Hume. Theologians typically say that, with divine providence, God regularly works through nature yet, as a creator, is free to work without, above, or against it as well. The possibility and probability of miracles are then equal to the possibility and probability of the existence of God.[108]

Skepticism (American English) or scepticism (British English; see spelling differences) is generally any questioning attitude or doubt towards one or more items of putative knowledge or belief.[109][110] It is often directed at domains such as the supernatural, morality (moral skepticism), religion (skepticism about the existence of God), or knowledge (skepticism about the possibility of knowledge, or of certainty).[111] Formally, skepticism as a topic occurs in the context of philosophy, particularly epistemology, although it can be applied to any topic such as politics, religion, and pseudoscience.

One reason why skeptics assert that the supernatural cannot exist is that anything "supernatural" is not a part of the natural world simply by definition. Although some believers in the supernatural insist that it simply cannot be demonstrated using the existing scientific methods, skeptics assert that such methods is the best tool humans have devised for knowing what is and isn't

One reason why skeptics assert that the supernatural cannot exist is that anything "supernatural" is not a part of the natural world simply by definition. Although some believers in the supernatural insist that it simply cannot be demonstrated using the existing scientific methods, skeptics assert that such methods is the best tool humans have devised for knowing what is and isn't knowable.[112]

The One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge was an offer by the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) to pay out one million U.S. dollars to anyone who could demonstrate a supernatural or paranormal ability under agreed-upon scientific testing criteria. A version of the challenge was first issued in 1964. Over a thousand people applied to take it, but none were successful. The challenge was terminated in 2015.[113][114][115]

Supernatural entities and powers are common in various works of fantasy. Examples include the TV shows Supernatural and The X-Files, the magic of the Harry Potter series, and the Force of Star Wars.

See also