All of us feel that we can be so much more as humans. That we are not using our full potential. And maybe we are right…
One of the highest industries in the world are the industries that give us a glimpse of this potential we hold within.
The most watched movies in the world are the movies about superheroes. The most common type of a story told all throughout history is the one about the hero who faces a challenge or an accident, and acquires some form of a superpower as a result of that ordeal. The hero uses this superpower to fight crime, defeat the evil, make things right and protect the world.
It’s like we are subconsciously trying to tell ourselves that we can be this hero, that we have the potential to unlock that superpower within us and ‘defeat the evil’ with it.
But what happens when real people acquire superpowers?
1. Tony Cicoria – The Lightning Pianist
Tony Cicoria was an orthopedic surgeon. One day he was speaking with his mother through a payphone when he was struck by a lightning.
He was technically dead for a while before he was brought back to life. After the accident, he had a medical treatment but when he went home he started feeling sluggish and having trouble with his memory. Doctors, however, told him that this was to be expected because of what happened to him.
But as those symptoms dissipated, Tony started feeling a strange urge! Out of the blue, he started listening to a piano music. He’d never been interested before but now he was craving for it.
Eventually, he bought a piano and, despite not knowing how to play, he was sounding like a master pianist. He says that he just started playing the melodies he was hearing in his head, and what was coming out of him was beautiful!
Doctors are unsure how this happened but Cicoria is really happy. Like he found a purpose!
He named his first piece “The Lightning Sonata”
2. Franco Magnani – The Memory Photographer
After emigrating from Italy to San Francisco in the 60s Franco Magnani came down with a sickness suffering seizures and often being delirious.
When he began to recover, Franco started recalling vivid details of his childhood home, which he had not seen for more than 30 years.
He became so engulfed by the reoccurring visions that he began to paint the scenes he was seeing in his head.
Back in Italy, he was a cook. In the US he was a woodworker. He’d never picked up a paintbrush in his hand before in his life. However, now he was suddenly able to paint in great, almost photo-like detail.
Doctors say that the high temperature might have triggered a temporal lobe epilepsy explaining why painting these memories might have become an obsession for him.
However, no one can explain the sudden talent for painting, neither the ability to express the images that he saw in his mind with a camera like details.
3. Jason Padgett – The Fractal Man
In 2002 Jason Padgett was leaving a bar when he was jumped by 2 guys and suffered a concussion.
After returning home he started noticing geometric shapes everywhere he went.
For 3 years he rarely left his house. Eventually, Jason started painting the shapes that he saw. Once he began to venture out more people noticed that his drawings were fractals, mathematical sets that show a repeating pattern.
Jason was never good at math, but now he was excelling! He was also the only person in the world that was able to draw the patterns solely with his hand, without any tools.
The most popular theory is that the blow to his skull affected the areas of the brain that control object boundary formation. This allowed him to see the geometric patterns and perceive the world through a more mathematical prism.
Here are some of his images:
4. Ken Walters – The Doodler
In 1986, Ken Walters was in an accident and broke his back. This made him stay in bad for 1 year. Soon after he was kicked out of his home and suffered 2 heart attacks.
By 2005 he was jobless for almost 20 years. Later in 2005, he had a stroke and while in a hospital he tried to write a letter to the nurse. However, he found himself doodling instead of writing. This was strange and new to him.
Ken was an engineer before he was paralyzed and has never been good at art. Doctors said that this new talent was likely a result of the stroke, as the brain can rewire itself to avoid the damaged areas. He was told the symptoms will be temporary.