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Jack the Ripper: I was so misunderstood—because I took people’s lives—
Me (to myself): Ya think?
Jack the Ripper: –the work I do now is so praised.
Jamie (stunned): He really doesn’t consider himself a murderer!
Me: Well, do you not think that every life has value?
Jack the Ripper: Every productive life has value.
Me: Aww. Well, from a spiritual standpoint, don’t you think otherwise now? Oh, were your victims part of your spiritual contract? Did they sign up for this? I mean, was this a higher spiritual goal?
Jamie: Erik’s explaining it more detail.
Jack the Ripper: Yes. Yes.
Me: So, your victims signed up for it before their last life. Is that what you’re saying?
Jack the Ripper: Yes.
Me: So, what is the whole spiritual aspect behind what you did? Was it meant for you, individually or for the collective?
Jack the Ripper: I don’t think it was a spiritual lesson for the collective; I did it for the sake of science, and I think it did help science.
Jamie: Just ignorance, here. Can I stop for a second?
Jamie: Was he—I just never read about him—did he cut the bodies in a certain way?
Me: I don’t know. I really don’t know anything about him. (I read about him as a teenager, but that horse left the barn a long time ago.)
Jamie: Me neither. I chose to read about Helen Keller, not Jack the Ripper.
Me: Exactly! Sorry Jack.
(Sometimes I cringe at the thought that these comments hurt that entity’s feelings. Then I feel guilty for feeling sorry for such a monster. Can’t win for losing!)
Me: Do you have any regrets, “John,” I should say?
Jack the Ripper: I regret that I was so misunderstood; I regret that I came into a time when it was not appropriate to work upon the human body for discovery reasons.
Me: Okay. (It’s all about him, obviously.)
Jack the Ripper: If I were to come to life now, the work I would have done would have seen as very brilliant, very intelligent. I wish my legacy was not based on murder, but that it was based on knowledge and scientific exploration. I did not have the craving for death itself; I had the craving for understanding what life was.
Me: Do you think you could have accomplished the same thing—of course I understand you couldn’t do to dead bodies what you did to the living back then, but do you think you could achieved the knowledge you wanted by working on the dead, if that were possible?
Jamie: Uh, he just got tons of energy! He leans in front of me and says, “NO!”
Jack the Ripper: It would not have been the same discovery. I needed tissue that was alive. The body is dead within minutes, and you only have a certain amount to time to see how the organ is functioning—
Jamie (to Jack, frustrated): Again, would you PLEASE use words that are—
Jamie: It’s something about the tissue structure; it breaks apart when it doesn’t have the oxygen.
Me: Necrosis? Necrose? Does it start with an “n”?
Jamie: What is it?
Me: It starts to die; you say it starts to necrose.
Jamie: Is that when it doesn’t have oxygen?
Me: Yes. Or he might be saying “anoxia.” So, John, you’re saying that you wish you could have lived in a different time like today, where you could have had a person who had just died, and (with permission) you could have quickly done an autopsy (in a way that you think would yield the knowledge you were seeking.)
Jack the Ripper: Yes.
Me: Okay. Do you have a past life that you think influenced your last one?
Jamie: He’s talking about being an African in the heart of Africa itself. The landscape is really interesting. He’s showing me that it’s jungle that turns into this desert. It’s like a fine line: jungle, desert. (unintelligible for a few seconds.)
Jack the Ripper: I learned how to train and work with the monkeys.
Jamie (laughing): In my head, I asked if there were monkeys in Africa, and Erik just started laughing!
Me (laughing): Oh, no! Erik, be nice!
Jamie (giggling): I wasn’t thinking!
Me: We had a monkey in our family , and his name was Erik.
Jamie: A ha! So, the monkeys would die natural deaths, and out of curiosity, he’s ask the gods’ permission, and he would ask the tribe’s permission to remove the skin and use the skin, the muscles and the bones for tools. It was the discovery of how the animal was actually working that encouraged him to want to learn how to do that to humans. But that was never offered to him, ever!
Me: Well, I guess not! He could have chosen to be a cannibal. That would have been a better choice.
Jack the Ripper: Never.
Me: Do you have any final messages for anyone out there: maybe the victims’ families—anyone?
Jack the Ripper: My final message is this: The power that you put behind your own judgment maybe falsely placed.
Erik (to John the Ripper): Don’t you want to tell us more?
Jamie (sternly): Listen, you don’t have to be mysterious, John. Just talk.
Me: Yeah, time’s a-wastin’, John!
Jack the Ripper: I’m disappointed how one respectable person judges another for something that might have not been done wrongly. Then, the masses agree with that one judgment, and power builds behind it.
Jamie (to John the Ripper): You’re talking about yourself, aren’t you?
Jamie: He feels like what he did was for the right cause.
Me: Yeah. Now, how would you envision the perfect world to be, John?
Jack the Ripper: Open. Open communication, open honesty. Open knowledge where everyone is able to learn whatever they want.
Me: Interesting. That makes sense (but not at the expense of others.) Erik, do you have any final questions for Mr. Ripper?
Me: Okay, well, thank you very much, John.
Jack the Ripper: Thank you for having me.
Jamie: He does this kind of (Jamie wraps an imaginary cloak round the front of her body.) I don’t even know what you call it. A cape? A loose jacket?
Me: Okay, well, thank you again.
Jamie: He’s slinking out of the room.