The Bible With Emoticons? Emoji Edition Kickstarter Launched

Aaron Turpen

Kamran Kastle is an artist and he wants to translate the Bible into emoticons. With the catchphrase "the oldest book translated into the newest language," the Kickstarter campaign to create the emoji Bible aims to raise $25,000 in 11 days. So far, things aren't looking good for the crowd-fund hopeful.

The Bible, says Complex, has been translated into 533 languages and portions into 2,883 languages. This latest hopeful is emoji, which Kastle believes he can do if he has the funding. The idea, he says, came from a conversation with one of his students at the Los Angeles Film Society. In his sample on his Kickstarter page, the artist notes that many characters will have to be created as there are no emoticons for Jesus, the Devil, and other concepts in the Bible.

"I read a line and then figure out which emoticons I should use to represent that Biblical verse."

This isn't the first time someone has gone to the crowd-funding website Kickstarter to try to raise money to create new editions of the Bible. According to the Deseret News, for example, at least two other successful Kickstarter campaigns have resulted in funding for updated translations of the world's oldest book. The Forever Bible and Bibliotheca raised nearly $2 million between them. In this context, Kastle's emoji Bible fund of just $25,000 seems small.


Yet the idea hasn't been met with a lot of enthusiasm, as witnessed by the lack of funding so far. Many seem to think that the campaign is irreverent or demeaning to the Bible and religion. Others, notes the Deseret News, might find it confusing.

Kastle attempts to forestall these fears by noting in his funding campaign that the original text of the Bible accompanies each set of emoticons, verse by verse. The money from the campaign will fund printing the new emoji Bible, says the artist, as he's already begun the translation itself. All who donate to the campaign will receive free copies of the emoticons he creates and will have their name listed in the back of the printed version as sponsors. Kastle plans to give print editions to those who donate $100 or more.

The ambitious translator of the Bible also plans to try to enlist the help of a notable list of stars, including Mel Gibson, Vladimir Putin, the Pope, and others.

"Considering the after-party plans, hopeful list of helpers, and plans translate & print the 1,300 pages of the Bible.. $25,000 seems cheap," said one Twitter comment.

So far, Twitter fans seem to be mixed on the idea of an emoji Bible.

If the emoji Bible project is funded, it may seem offensive to some, but not to others. What would you think?