John Lennon, Politics and Spirituality

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John Lennon, Politics and Spirituality

Copyright © June 2011 Douglas W. Jerving.
All Rights Reserved.

I am a Christian. That is not merely how I view myself; it is who I am. The “who I am” part is a denial of the postmodern compartmentalizing mentality of the society in which I live. My Christianity is not just a way of categorizing myself so others can pigeonhole me. It IS me. I have internalized my relationship to Jesus Christ. He is not my doctrine. He is my LORD and my Savior. Without Him I am lost.

I am also a Beatles freak. I don’t depend upon their music for my religious experience but I do love the music and even at times the thinking of the Beatles. I probably appreciate what the Beatles had to say more because of their contradictions than their consistency. Their contradictions prove that these were four minds who were very consistent in being different from one another, and yet were capable of coordinating with one another to produce some of the greatest music of all time.

John Lennon was in my mind, the great thinker of these four fabs. Paul was a great lyric writer of love poetry, and possibly the real avant-garde beat generation influence in the group. George was the late bloomer bringing the more blues oriented spiritual influence of the sixties into the group. Ringo was the studio perfectionist drummer that forced everything back into a sale-able routine that could fit prime time Ed Sullivan.

Paul’s love lyrics may have had decades of staying power, but that is simply because everyone can relate to love. Not everyone can relate to the horrors of heroin withdrawal like the horrific Cold Turkey of John. Certainly, few of us can relate to the angst ridden lyrics of Mother, when John cries “You didn’t love me.”

John was a writer of the soul, of the heart, of the true blue. When John wrote a song we believed him more because we recognized that he unashamedly put all his feelings about a subject out there for everyone to see. He refused to confine himself to the social baggage that demanded wearing a bag of conventional cover-ups. For most of us, we see John as really saying what he thought rather than saying what he thought we might expect him to think. John was honest even though being honest burned him terribly.

John Lennon has recently been referred to as a closet Republican who would have voted for Reagan because of his dissatisfaction with Carter. This imprecation comes from someone who once upon a time sought to profit from the Lennons by stealing their most personal possessions and copyrighting them as his own. His views are highly suspect.

Notwithstanding, a serious study of John’s lyrics reveals him as no communist so much as a libertarian thinker. He fell in line with no one. He only believed in John. John and Yoko. His politics were personal, and not at all collective. He was no Christian, but neither was he a communist, socialist, anarchist, or any otherchist. John was a free thinker even more than any libertarian this side of Ayn Rand. Lennon Shrugged.

John Lennon was no collectivist, centralist, socialist, fascist, statist, anarchist, or any otherchist as I said before. He was a free-thinker without the capital (or Capitalist) “F” in front of “free”. John was just one of the very few men who have the courage to think for themselves regardless of the consequences. He condemned communism as well as capitalism because both of them inhibited individualism. Some examples are seen in the following lyrics:

I don't believe in Beatles
I just believe in me
Yoko and me

You say you'll change the constitution
Well, you know
We all want to change your head
You tell me it's the institution
Well, you know
You better free you mind instead
But if you go carrying pictures of chairman Mao
You ain't going to make it with anyone anyhow.

John was no Christian. But he was no “commie” either. He was a free thinking individualist who disregarded everything that did not extol the freedom of the individual.


Doug Jerving is the publisher of the You may contact him at


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