The concept of the so-called indigo children arises directly out of the New Age movement that’s been sweeping through the world on the heels of the counter-culture days. The term was first coined by parapsychologist Nancy Ann Tappe who began seeing indigo blue auras in children and wrote about it in a book in 1982. Since then, New Agers have latched on to the concept in force beginning with a book called “The Indigo Children: The New Kids Have Arrived” published in 1998, followed by numerous other publications, organizations, international workshops and lecture circuits.
Indigo children are thought to be incarnated beings of higher consciousness than their parents, and have been arriving in especially high numbers since the early 1990’s. They are said to display greater empathic abilities and psychic skills (for example, to make future predictions), to the point of almost super-human capacity. They display an exaggerated sense of intolerance for authority and manipulation, and are sometimes characterized as depressive but highly intelligent. They are here to usher in a new era of higher human consciousness, the proponents say.
Critics of the indigo children theory tend to be psychologists who cite the fact that there are no studies that can verify the existence of advanced psychic abilities or other claims. They see the phenomenon more as a response to increasing incidence of children with ADHD and other learning disabilities and behavioral problems, and parents’ desire not to engage with conventional therapeutic interventions, instead preferring to think of their children as special.
We don’t take a stand either way. Both positions have their merits and drawbacks. The New Age community, on one hand, has spread its share of dis- and misinformation over the years, and the conservative scientific community, on the other hand, is not equipped to deal with certain realities. What’s important is that parents nurture their children’s abilities, whatever they may be, and provide appropriate and loving discipline when necessary. All children are special in their ways, and none are more special than others. This is one of the most important messages to send to children who will be working to create a better, more egalitarian world for everyone.