Why was John Lennon an atheist

A world without religion, do I want that?


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Do religions stand in the way of a worldwide understanding that Lennon wants to banish in his peace hymn from 1971? A world without religion, do I want that?

It is interesting how John Lennon commented on this 40 years ago in the long last interview shortly before his murder. When asked what inspired him to write this song, he said: "Someone gave us a kind of little prayer book. It's in the Christian idiom ... It's about the idea of ​​positive prayer. If you want a car, get it you get a key. Do you understand? Imagine is about. If you can imagine a world in peace, with no religious beliefs - not without religion, but without this 'My God is greater than yours' story - then it can come true. "

And then Lennon adds: "One time someone from the 'World Church' called me and asked if they could read the text from Imagine use it and put it in 'imagine one religion 'are likely to change. That showed me that they hadn't understood a thing. "

Isn't that the spirit of the Sermon on the Mount Lennon is speaking from here? "Blessed are the peacemakers. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for justice." Mahatma Gandhi also agreed. In order to live from this spirit of the Beatitudes one does not need an established religion, but an alert, compassionate heart.

It's a tragic, fateful story. In the late summer 40 years ago, an interview with forty-year-old John Lennon and his wife, the Japanese artist Yoko Ono, began, which lasted several weeks. Ten years after the end of the Beatles, Lennon had disappeared from the limelight, caring almost exclusively for their son. What should be an interim balance became the last detailed self-disclosure of the artist. Because two days after the interview was published, Lennon died on his doorstep from a former fan’s bullet.

He once said in the interview: "Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King are good examples of great nonviolence advocates who were killed by violence. I can't fix it. We're pacifists, but I'm not sure what it means if someone is so much a pacifist that he will be shot. I will probably never understand that. "

Even earlier, Lennon had to fear for his life, the Ku Klux Klan had him in their sights, as well as the FBI, because of his criticism of US politics. And then he was a target of hatred for stubborn Christians.

With his pacifist engagement, John Lennon was well on the trail of the crucified. The honeymoon was staged by John Lennon and Yoko Ono as a "bed-in" because the press was on their heels anyway. - You sat in a hotel bed and talked to the reporters and used the worldwide attention as a week-long commercial for peace. The song comes from this time The Ballad of John and Yoko. The chorus of the ballad goes like this: "Christ, you know it ain't easy." "Christ, you know it is not easy, you know how hard it can get. As things go, they will crucify me."

Before that was her song Give Peace a Chance gone around the world. In December 1969, at the height of the Vietnam War, they staged a poster campaign, signed very small with "Happy Christmas from John & Yoko". The message jumps out in bold: "WAR IS OVER" - "The war is over". Smaller below the line that makes you sit up and take notice: "If you want it" - "If you want it".

That is probably the simple and sad truth to this day.

The "morning prayer" of the NDR gives life orientation from the Christian message. It runs Monday to Saturday at 7.50 a.m. in NDR Kultur and at 5.55 a.m. in NDR Info. The audio and manuscripts can be found here.