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Home arrow Blog arrow October 2008 arrow October 9, 2008: John Lennon's 68th

October 9, 2008: John Lennon's 68th
WAWA Blog October 9, 2008: John Lennon was born 68 years ago today. His physical presence left us 9 days after Dorothy Day's did in 1980. 


Dorothy Day entered the Catholic church, I left it...


It was at the age of 12, in the summer of 1966, inspired by John Lennon’s honesty, I tuned out the institutional church.

Beginning at about six years old, every Sunday morning had been spent in a glass-encased room at St. Bernard’s one holy Roman Catholic Church, in Levittown, Long Island.

The glass-encased room was called, and literally was, the Cry Room.

Growing up with television, it was natural for me to stand up close against the soundproof glass and watch 'the show' on the other side.

Every so often, I’d hear the priest’s voice filter through the loudspeaker above my head. But it was all Latin to me: and back then, it really was!

I see myself now, just as I was then, surrounded by squirming kids and uptight adults, engulfed by the sounds of crying and whining, and I truly believed that was church.

Once my younger brothers had grown, I got to be in the main room and the show lost its mystery to me, for the Latin had been changed to English and quickly became routine.


When I was 9, in 1963, two life altering events occurred.

By Thanksgiving that year, I was overfilled with images of JFK being shot and John-John during that motorcade. He was just a little guy in a short coat with his knees exposed who saluted as his father’s casket rode by and many of America’s other children also bid goodbye to their childhood.


But, three months later, the gloom was gone, for the Beatles appeared on a Sunday night in my living room, and the world as I had known it changed again.

In the summer of ’66, it was reported that John Lennon made a comment to a friend and reporter that the Beatles were more popular with my generation than Jesus was.

I agreed with him, for my friends and I knew every lyric to every Beatles song, but nobody ever quoted Jesus.


Lennon made me think about my own hypocrisy, and that led me to drop the institutional church.


It was in July on a Saturday afternoon, immediately after the ritual of weekly confession that I knelt at the altar and mindlessly repeated the same old prayers as the week prior. But on that particular day in '66, in the middle of the three Our Fathers and ten Hail Mary's, it hit me like a light. Those words that I uttered never changed anything, and I got up and walked out, convinced I was doomed for hell, for I had failed at Confession!


I never doubted there was a God, but as John said and I believed, “that what people call God is something in all of us. I believe that what Jesus and Mohammed and Buddha and all the rest said was right. It's just that the translations have gone wrong…Jesus was all right, but his disciples were thick and ordinary. It's them twisting it that ruins it for me.”


Lennon said and sang, “You're just left with yourself all the time, whatever you do anyway. You've got to get down to your own God in your own temple. It's all down to you, mate...All we are saying is give peace a chance...All you need is love...Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will be as one...Reality leaves a lot to the imagination.”

William Blake penned, “Imagination is evidence of the Divine.”


On October 9, 2005, I wrote on WAWA BLOG:

John Lennon would have been 65 at exactly 6:35 PM today.

On 3/7/04 inside of 216 North Park Avenue in Winter Park, Florida "When I'm 64" the traveling Lennon Art for Sale Show to benefit Instant Karma Adopt-A-Classroom; helping teachers, helping Children show cased the Love and Art of John for Yoko and Sean.


216 [2+1+6=9] North Park Avenue had previously been a Victoria's Secret and in the far end where padded bras had once hung had now become a temporary shrine of unending love of a father for his son.

The drawings upon the walls had been created out of play between John and Sean. Yoko had lightly tinged them pastel and turned them into a book called "Real Love"

I was captivated by one in particular titled "Sheep Meadowing" in which sheep had levitated into the sky and had morphed into clouds above the heads of sheep meadowing.

After a time of timelessness cogitating upon those sheep, I reluctantly pulled my head back through the clouds to continue on to the second Gathering of Women for Peace, where sisters of every color and creed gathered in harmony at the Mosque in East Orlando.

We came together to imagine what Peace in the World would look like and what we could do to make it happen.

All day long in my inner ear I did hear "Revolution 9" from the White Album tuned in so very clear and with a few new lyrics:


Number 9 Number 9 Number 9....Let all who are little come in here, Wisdom has built her house; come eat her food and drink her wine and walk in the ways of understanding [Proverbs 9]...I'm so very small I'm so very small, already within the heart of every atom yet extend Beyond the Universe and connect every mother and child....Number 9 Number 9 Number 9.

"Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we're being run by maniacs for maniacal ends...I believe that as soon as people want peace in the world they can have it. The only trouble is they are not aware they can get it.-John Lennon



PS-A print of SHEEP MEADOWING now hangs above my bathtub.


when I awoke, I was alone...So I lit a fire, isn't it good, Norwegian wood.-John Lennon




Today begins Days of prayer for Vanunu and the Supreme Court that justice, mercy and compassion will rule and human rights will win:

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. -Article 19

Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own -Article 13:2



"What does God require? He has told you o'man!
Be just, be merciful, and walk humbly with your Lord." -Micah 6:8




For the latest news on his case visit Vanunu's website regarding 3 month jail sentence for speaking to foreign media in 2004:
 
http://www.vanunu.com/


Background: The Vanunu Saga: 2008

 http://www.wearewideawake.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=50&Itemid=156
   
 
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"HOPE has two children.The first is ANGER at the way things are. The second is COURAGE to DO SOMETHING about it."-St. Augustine

 "He who is not angry when there is just cause for anger is immoral. Why? Because anger looks to the good of justice. And if you can live amid injustice without anger, you are immoral as well as unjust." - Aquinas

BEYOND NUCLEAR: Mordechai Vanunu's Freedom of Speech Trial

Published 10/30/10

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UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.


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The Paradoxical Commandments
by Dr. Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

© 1968, 2001 Kent M. Keith

" In the final analysis, it is between you and God.  It was never between you and them anyway."-Mother Teresa


“You cannot talk like sane men around a peace table while the atomic bomb itself is ticking beneath it. Do not treat the atomic bomb as a weapon of offense; do not treat it as an instrument of the police. Treat the bomb for what it is: the visible insanity of a civilization that has ceased...to obey the laws of life.”- Lewis Mumford, 1946



The age of warrior kings and of warrior presidents has passed. The nuclear age calls for a different kind of leadership....a leadership of intellect, judgment, tolerance and rationality, a leadership committed to human values, to world peace, and to the improvement of the human condition. The attributes upon which we must draw are the human attributes of compassion and common sense, of intellect and creative imagination, and of empathy and understanding between cultures."  - William Fulbright



“Any nation that year after year continues to raise the Defense budget while cutting social programs to the neediest is a nation approaching spiritual death.” - Rev. MLK
Establishment of Israel
"On the day of the termination of the British mandate and on the strength of the United Nations General Assembly declare The State of Israel will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel: it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion it will guarantee freedom of religion [and] conscience and will be faithful to the Charter of the United Nations." - May 14, 1948. The Declaration of the Establishment of Israel
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