Why I Love Rebirth and Renaissance Stories

Opinion

Renaissance came after the Dark Ages. As a country, France overcame oppression and tyranny following rebirth during its 18th century revolution. Today, they are among the G7 nations. Cleopatra was just an inexperienced teen when she inherited the throne. But she emerged to become one of the most influential rulers in Ptolemaic Egypt.

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His eyes are closed. His heart has stopped. The sentinels are closing in. Death is near, almost inevitable. Everybody seems to have lost hope. Everybody but one.

“Neo,” Trinity whispers his name to his motionless form, “I’m not afraid anymore.”

She’s almost choking on her words.

“The oracle told me that I would fall in love, and that that man…the man that I love, would be the one. So, you see, you can’t be dead. You can’t be…because I love you. You hear me? I love you.” Then she kisses him.

The ECG machine starts to beep, and an image of Neo’s heart on the screen begins to thump, much to the astonishment of Morpheus and his acolytes. Neo awakes in the Matrix world and proceeds to take on the once-intimidating-but-now-powerless agent Smith. He is no match. Neo destroys him effortlessly.

This scene will always be my favourite part of the movie. The Matrix may have heralded a new beginning in Hollywood; the coming of slow-motion and 360⁰ camera-angles in action scenes and fight choreography, but it is a lot more than that. You see, beyond the visual aesthetics and awe-inspiring photography is a deeper message. The importance of rebirth.

When it comes to storytelling, there are seven common plot archetypes used by writers. They are: overcoming the monster, rags to riches, the quest, voyage and return, comedy, tragedy and rebirth. In a society rife with suffering and struggle as ours, the plot most audiences relate to is a “rags to riches” archetype, which is why Nollywood is full of weak stories about the poor guy on the street who suddenly hammers.

However, my favourite is rebirth. Rebirths account for the arcs (major changes) in most success stories, and unlike other archetypes, we can easily apply them in our lives. For it is only when our old selves “die and become reborn” that we can truly face the “monster” in our lives, or take on that difficult quest, or complete an arduous voyage. Along the way, we may experience some comedy or tragedy, but we ultimately become better persons for it.

Like the proverbial phoenix that rises from its ashes- people achieve greatness when they experience a full transformation of their being. Before he became Neo (the one), Thomas Anderson was an unknown programmer at a software company. It is through Sati (the Buddhist concept of rebirth and enlightenment) that he discovered his true self and was able to save the world from the threat of rogue programs.

Renaissance came after the Dark Ages. As a country, France overcame oppression and tyranny following rebirth during its 18th century revolution. Today, they are among the G7 nations. Cleopatra was just an inexperienced teen when she inherited the throne. But she emerged to become one of the most influential rulers in Ptolemaic Egypt.

Perhaps the most popular example of rebirth can be seen in the conversion of Saul to Paul in the bible. The executioner turned evangelist. You can achieve a lot with a little change.

The beauty of rebirth is the freedom from fear; a deeper knowledge of things that allows you to face challenges differently and eventually rise above them. Remember how exiled Prince, Ogun returned to take back leadership of the Ubini Kingdom (present day Benin) from his usurping brother, Uwaifiokun?

In summary, never underestimate the power of self-transformation. Whether you are struggling at work, or at school or even within yourself, a personal change may be all you need to overcome conflict. What better time to do this than the season of rebirth? Happy Easter.

Responses

  1. Enaid
    🙂🙂 don’t we all need a rebirth in our lives. The beauty of Easter can’t ever be underestimated. Lovely article. Happy Easter to you too
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