Thursday, February 15, 2007

An Angel Among Us

Akiane Kramarik says she remembers her trip through the after life in between her last life and this life. She is also in possession of incredible, remarkable artistic abilities and so she paints. In fact, combining her incredible skill with her memories, she paints beautiful pictures of what she says is Heaven, and even the face of God. Akiane is a 12 year old child prodigy who is the only known child "binary genius" in the world today. I think I personally would call that a "Double Savant". She is talented in both graphic art and in poetry and has already authored two books.

She recently appeared on Oprah Winfrey, Good Morning America, Montel Williams, and in the news on a host of news programs. If you would like to see examples of her artwork and pictures of her try her website here

Strangely, although her parents are atheists, and despite the fact that she is home schooled and so has presumably not been subject to any proselytizing from any religious people, she has developed a strong belief in God.
She is a very beautiful little girl with very spiritual beliefs who simply wants to share her talents and her good will and best highest intentions with everyone in the world. She is an angel among us.

If you go to this youtube site, you will see a CNN video done about her.

It's interesting to read the comments on the youtube site.
There are 8 pages of posts from people arguing whether or not this is really the face of God, whether the visions of heaven are real, or whether Akiane is simply brain-washed, whether CNN brushed past all the other child geniuses they came across in order to find one that claims her abilities come from God and preaches a spiritualist message that is consistent with Christian fundamentalism, because that sells well in this political climate and at this point in America's history when our society's pendulum is swung so far to the right.

The staunch and stubbornly cynical atheists and the wild-eyed religious zealots both get a chance to use this little girl's abilities and the story about them to espouse their doctrine. Some are condescending religious snobs trying to push biblical quotations to proselytize their particular religion, while others are just as adamant in the other direction to show their disdain for those with religious beliefs, and point out their gullibility in accepting Christian teachings. Both sides think the other is completely deluded.

It's amazing to see how people's minds and opinions are so polarized when something like this comes up.

Here is one of the more polite exchanges:
"To everyone who doesn't believe in God: He loves you and he sent his son to die for YOU!! You are forgiven already. If you have never been to church or you do not have proof that God does not exist then Your comments are VAGUE. Please just go to a Christian church this Saturday night or Sunday morning and just sit there with an open mind. It won't hurt you and it's free."

"I went to church all my life 2 times a week and sunday school and everything. Then I took an evolution class, and a historical jesus class. My eyes were really opened. There is a high probability that god does not exist. You should really take both of those classes. It wount hurt you. Just sit there with an open mind. Really."

Here is another polite exchange:
"If a God had created the world, then it would be a great achievement, but it was formed by natural forces, and life evolved to produce the awesome place that we live, and that is truly and astonishingly beautiful."

"Your belief is wrong. God created this Earth and Christ died for our sins. Even yours! You will not see Heaven once Jesus returns for his children unless you witness his Love for you and believe in his glory. "

Many, of course, are far more polarized, and some are far less polite. Some are bible-thumping evangelicals, some are die-hard atheists, and both are battling it out. I find it interesting that neither side ever seems to be swayed from their beliefs. Some may be polite, but in their their core beliefs, they remain intransigent despite the most energetic efforts of the opposite camp.

Then there are other forums and other discussions about her which are not about the religious implications, but are critical about her art. Specifically, some say it is "flat and has no spark or soul", while others think it is full of life and soul. Some think it is not above the kind of art reserved for black velvet paintings of Elvis and dogs playing poker, while again, others think it should hang in the Louvre. Still others think that while it may not be the very best art being produced in the world, it IS still nevertheless quite remarkable considering that it is coming from an 11 year old. Still others doubt that it even comes from her at all. They note that her mother painted and suggest that her mother has painted these and attributes them to her daughter in order to build a media phenomenon that she might cash in on, and very shrewdly skews it toward God and Jesus in order to capture that strong market in America today. They point out that people have paid as much as $700,000 for a painting of God's face.

And yet, in the middle of the firestorm of opinions raging around her, is this beautiful, sweet, innocent little girl sitting there quietly painting away. The light within her is very clear and bright and pure. I can see that.

I find I don't have to believe or disbelieve the implications of her art. I simply take it in and appreciate it for it's own sake. It is art. And it is beautiful. It is what little girls think of from a little girl's mind and soul. And it is the capturing and honest expression of her own inner light - which is the nature of all good art.

On a similar note, there is another child prodigy painter named Marla Olmstead. Marla paints in a modernistic, textural style (as opposed to the realist style that Akiane paints in). She has been painting since she was 2, and these paintings also sell to collectors around the world for thousands of dollars. Marla is now 4 years old.
Personally, I find it amazing that a tiny girl who has been in the world less time time than my current pair of shoes have been, should be producing such prolific and highly praised art.
Her website is here.


At 2/18/2007 7:06 PM, Anonymous Igor said...

There are many talented people. There are many talented children. There are many things we do not (yet) understand.

Why do you always want to "explain" them by some mysticism, by employing some "gods", etc? Why can't you accept the world as it is - strange and interesting and beautiful place, barely understood (yet!) by science?

Why do you guys ALWAYS need/want some "gods"/aliens in your lives? What does it give to you?

At 2/18/2007 7:13 PM, Anonymous igor said...

Oh, Val, the above comment is NOT addressed to you, of course. Just venting my frustration with all that religious crowd...


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