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Resurrections and Insurrections

Rising from the tomb on Easter Day 2021, this is what I saw: the spring sunshine illuminating a thousand cherry blossoms, and beyond these the great vault of infinite blue space.

As with all great moments in life, resurrection is definitely one that you want to capture and share on social media. Accordingly, I came prepared with my camera. What you see in the photo is the actual view as I rose out of the Harrison sepulcher in the Père Lachaise cemetery, Division 26. If you don’t believe me, you can go there and try for yourself. That’s right. Crawl into the sepulcher, get into the groove of being dead, then shake yourself out of it, wake up, and raise your eyes to the sky above. What a beautiful day to rise again!

What was I doing rising from Harrison’s tomb on Easter Day? Well, my name is in fact Harrison, Eduouard-Thomas Harrison...or E.T. if you prefer. So I had every right to be rising out of my own grave.

You may also wonder: what business did I have being dead in the first place, when I was actually alive?

One must die in order to be reborn. Each of us--and indeed our entire civilization--is in dire need of rebirth.

Perhaps I could have chosen a less controversial day for a resurrection, but maybe I too have a message for you :

When will the Jesus in you rise up at last? Of what importance is a man who lived, died, and rose again 2000 years ago, if he does not represent a certain possibility in every one of us? Is there not a part of you that has been dead for too long? When are you going to raise it up?

Are you afraid to stir up trouble in your life? For sure, there will be trouble. Jesus also disturbed the status quo and threatened the foundations of the Western world order. There was a threat of insurrection before any promise of resurrection. He spoke words that burned like coals on people's heads, such as"whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it."

No, Jesus was not a good man, in the socially responsible sense. He was a rule-breaker and a trouble-maker who never would have said anything to the tune of "stay safe". Are you going to keep on being a good man or woman? You might as well be dead.

Rise in your sovereignty, even if it leads to insurrection. Such is the price to ressurect the dead man or woman within you. Such is the path to become whole. Such is the destiny of a world divided.

Many who have crossed my path since my rising have labeled me as E.T., the extra-terrestrial. I am of the earth, and even down-to-earth. I may seem different from many of the muted others, but there is nothing inherently wrong with me. Yes, it has taken a while--and the help of a very special woman--to figure out what happened to me and how I got here.

She told me I traveled neither through time nor space to get here, but slipped out of one dimension and into another. I entered an alternative reality that was one of many possible scenario following a point of collective bifurcation. One of those collective bifurcations happened in the third month of the year 2020. That was where I slipped.

These things I only came to understand at the end of my story. Rising fresh and eager from the tomb, I had no idea. How was it that the place where I found myself, called here, was exactly where I was before...yet not at all the same.

Let me explain. Before the event, I was a frequent visitor to the Père Lachaise cemetery--a peaceful place for contemplative strolls. So when I suddenly opened my eyes to the bright April day, and sat up to find myself surrounded by tombs, there was nothing bizarre about it. The dead were looking and behaving very much the same as usual.

The strangeness of it all struck me only when I encountered the living: those supposedly the same as me. They were all wearing face masks as if they had escaped from a hospital operating room. Half-dead they walked, peering at me nervously as I passed. Then a cemetery patrolman stopped me and reminded me that wearing a mask was required in public. My omission would cost me 135€.

“What’s this all about? I’ve never heard of such a thing!” I exclaimed.

But as I spoke, noticing people walking by all with masks, it became obvious that I was not where I thought I was, even in a familiar city surrounded by tombs I knew well.

Resistance was futile.

I headed down the hill towards the exit. Passing by Cherubini’s sepulcher, a tallish, fair-haired woman suddenly leaped onto the path ahead, lithe like a fairy. She was not wearing any mask either. Like Adam and Eve, suddenly meeting in the garden of Eden, knowing that we were naked, both of us looked startled before relaxing into a shy grin and chuckles.

“Sorry” she said, “I’m not used to seeing strangers smile these days. How dare you?”

“And how dare you pop out from behind a tomb, catching a man off his guard?”

“It’s actually quite nice to meet a smiling stranger, she repented. We must be the only two in the entire cemetery...excluding its permanent residents, that is.”

“I only found out about this mask-wearing drill a couple of minutes ago. Just got fined. I guess they announced the drill in advance on the news, but I never watch the news.”

She eyed me oddly with her elfish, emerald eyes:

“I also wish it were just a drill. Can’t believe this has been going on for an entire year!”

Here was another moment when it became clear I needed to figure out where I had landed. Everything looked the same, but something had gone awry.

“Hey, I have a question,” I said. “I know it sounds strange, but maybe you’ll play along? Imagine I just rose up today after being dead for an entire year. Well, not really dead, just somehow unplugged. Now, here I am, clueless, mask-less, at your mercy, asking you what’s going on in the world. Do you think you could fill me in?”

To be continued, as part of my ongoing book "Covidecoded". If you would like to know how this story unfolds, please place your request. The future ain’t what it used to be! That much I can assure you.

Here are some other photos from Père Lachaise on that singular Easter in the year 2021.


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