John Lennon – The Misunderstood Beatle


While watching Monday night football on a quiet afternoon on December 8, 1980, I was hungover when I heard Howard Cosell interrupt the game with a breaking news story. John Lennon was assassinated in New York City? Could that be true? That was true. Later, he was declared dead. I was shocked. Then my brother, Mark, called me on the phone with the news. We were both fans of John Lennon.

The Beatles, the Fab Four of the ’60s, were given character descriptions or nicknames adopted by their fans. John was the smart one, Paul the cute one, George the mysterious one, and Ringo the funny one.

I always felt that John Lennon’s character description or nickname should have been dubbed the “Misunderstood Beatle”, because he always seemed to stir up controversy about his beliefs. He was unable to make his comments clear, and the media was unhelpful.

Take, for example, the comment he made on March 4, 1966, when he said, “The Beatles are more popular than Jesus.” What he meant was that more people would go to see the Beatles than to church on Sunday. Which may have been true. He generalized a bit by blaming the United States, when he was referring to England.

Lennon was interviewed for the London Evening Standard by Maureen Cleave, who was a friend, and made an offhand comment about religion. Lennon said, “Christianity will go. It will fade and shrink. We are more popular than Jesus now; I don’t know which will go first: rock and roll or Christianity. Jesus was fine, but his disciples were very ordinary. They are them twisting what messes it up for me.”

On August 11, 1966, The Beatles held a press conference in Chicago, in order to address the growing furore.

Lennon: I suppose if I had said that TV was more popular than Jesus, I would have gotten away with it, but I happened to be talking to a journalist friend (Maureen Cleave), and I used the word “Beatles” as something remote. , not like what I think, like the Beatles, like those other Beatles, like other people see us. I just said that they are having more influence on children and things than anything else, including Jesus. But I said it that way, which is the wrong way.”

Report: Some teenagers have repeated their statements: “I like the Beatles better than Jesus Christ.” What do you think about that?

Lennon: Well, I originally pointed out that fact in reference to England. that we mean more to children than Jesus, or religion at the time. He wasn’t hitting him or putting him down. I was just stating that as a fact, and it is truer for England than it is here. I am not saying that we are better or greater, or comparing ourselves to Jesus Christ as a person or God as a thing, or whatever. I just said what I said and it was wrong. Or it was taken badly. And now it’s all this.

Report: But are you ready to apologize?

Lennon: I wasn’t saying whatever they’re saying I was saying. I’m sorry, I really meant it. I never wanted it to be a lousy anti-religious thing. I apologize if that will make you happy. I still don’t really know what I’ve done. I tried to tell you what I did, but if you want me to apologize, if it will make you happy, then that’s fine, I’m sorry.

John Lennon returned to the subject later that year, when he told Look magazine that, “I think Jesus was right, Buddha was right, and all those people like that are right. They all say the same thing, and I believe what Jesus said.” really said the basic things he established about love and kindness and not what people say he said if Jesus is more popular it means more control I don’t want that before they would all follow us even if it’s just to dance and sing for the rest of their lives.

Although there was little reaction to his statement in England, Christians elsewhere embarked on a massive campaign to destroy Beatles albums and other paraphernalia. The Archbishop of Boston admitted that he was probably right, but many still refused to forgive him.

I can relate to his controversial statement, because I have made similar statements, like when I walk into a gambling casino on a Sunday and say, “Look at all those cars, try to pack them into a church.” parking lot.” Of course, what I meant was that gambling is more popular than Jesus. I hope that’s not the truth, here in America. Am I in trouble for saying that?

All this did not bother Lennon, he continued to use religious comments in his songs, an era Godreleased in 1971. The lyrics are as follows:

God (words and music by John Lennon)

God is a concept

by which we measure

our bread

i will say it again

God is a concept

by which we measure

our pain

I don’t believe in magic

I don’t believe in i-ching

I don’t believe in the bible

I don’t believe in tarot

I don’t believe in hitler

I don’t believe in Jesus

I don’t believe in Kennedy

I don’t believe in buddha

I don’t believe in mantras

I don’t believe in gita

I don’t believe in yoga

I don’t believe in kings

i don’t believe in elvis

i don’t believe in zimmerman

I don’t believe in the beatles

I only belive in me

Yoko and I

And that is the reality

the dream is over

What can I say?

the dream is over


I was a weaver of dreams

But now I’m reborn

I was the walrus

But now I’m John

And so dear friends

you just have to carry on

the dream is over


Once again, Lennon was misunderstood. Many Christians discouraged him. I always understood Lennon’s style. I felt that he was approaching to question things that we did not dare to ask. He was a buffer between reality and fantasy. Some considered it threatening. I considered it harmless. Although he said “I don’t believe in Jesus”. And he said, “I don’t believe the Bible.” Maybe he should have left them out of the song, at least to avoid controversy and save his career, but Lennon was Lennon and he didn’t care. He was saying that he has the freedom to say what he wants to say or sing what he wants to sing. I’m sure he hurt his career. Paul McCartney’s career only flourished. No intention of leaving out George and Ringo. His careers remained stable.

I always thought a more suitable song for John Lennon would have been…don’t let them misunderstand me, written and performed by fellow musician and friend, Eric Burdon. He also wrote a book with the same title.

In 1973, Lennon wrote and sang the song, conceived, a very critical but popular song. He questioned the existence of heaven and hell and also non-religion. This also angered the Christians. His message was clear to me. He was simply stating that if there were none of these things that he is imagining, the world would live in peace, as one. Why should you fight? There would be no wars. Many wars have to do with religion. The song is all about imagination. He is not a terrorist who wants to blow up the world. The letter is as follows:


(words and music by John Lennon)

Imagine there is no sky

It’s easy if you try

no hell below us

Above us only the sky

imagine all the people

living for today

Imagine there are no countries

it is not hard to do

Nothing to kill or die for

And without religion too

imagine all the people

living life in peace

You may say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one

I hope that one day you will join us

And the world will be as one

Imagine our possessions

i wonder if you can

No need for greed or hunger

A fraternity of men

imagine all the people

sharing all over the world

You may say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one

I hope that one day you will join us

And the world will live as one


Lennon was always the open one. Some say that he was a hypocrite when he preached about love and peace, not war. In 1969, he demonstrated his beliefs in the song he wrote about him, Give peace a chanceafter his departure from The Beatles, during his solo career.

He defended many rights and causes. He was an anti-war activist. His beliefs were misunderstood and he was often taken as a socialist or a communist. President Nixon wanted him deported. Lennon stood up and fought for his right to stay where he loved to be: in New York City, USA. Sadly, it was also the place where he was murdered by a disturbed fan.

During his solo career, Lennon wrote and sang songs of rebellion with his political views. He socialized with anti-war leaders like Jerry Rubin, Abbie Hoffman and others. Lennon and his friends organized a concert in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in December 1971, called the “Free John Sinclair” concert. Sinclair was a local peace activist serving ten years in state prison for selling two joints of marijuana to an undercover police officer. Lennon appeared on stage along with Phil Ochs, Stevie Wonder and other musicians, as well as anti-war radical Jerry Rubin and Bobby Seale of the Black Panthers. 20,000 attended; two days after the concert, the state of Michigan released John Sinclair from prison. During this time, a song written and sung by Lennon was released, titled John Sinclair.

In 1972, Lennon released a song against sexism, titled, The woman is the black of the world, which implies that just as black people were discriminated against in some countries, so were women throughout the world. The letter is as follows:

The woman is the black of the world

(words and music by John Lennon)

The woman is the black of the world

Yes, it is… think about it.

The woman is the black of the world

Think about it… do something about it.

We make her paint her face and dance

If she’s not going to be a slave, we say she doesn’t love us

If she’s real, we say she’s trying to be a man

As we put her down, we pretend that she is above us.

The woman is the black of the world… yes she is

If you don’t believe me, look who you’re with

The woman is the slave of the slaves

Oh yeah…better yell about it.

We make her give birth and raise our children.

And then we left her flat for being a fat old chicken

We tell him that home is the only place he should be

Then we complain that she is too unworldly to be our friend.

The woman is the black of the world… yes she is

If you don’t believe me, look who you’re with

The woman is the slave of the slaves.

Yeah…okay…hit him!

We insult her every day on TV.

And I wonder why he has no guts or confidence

When he’s young we kill his will to be free

While we tell her not to be so smart, we belittle her for being so dumb.

The woman is the black of the world

Yes, it is… if you don’t believe me, look who you’re with.

The woman is the slave of the slaves.

Yes, it is… if you don’t believe me, you’d better scream about it.

We make her paint her face and dance

We make her paint her face and dance

We make her paint her face and dance

We make her paint her face and dance

We make her paint her face and dance

We make her paint her face and dance


On a happy note, in 1971, Lennon also wrote and sang the song, titled, Merry Christmas. This has become a vacation favorite. It is questionable why he was left out. Christ In Christmas. But “X” is the Greek symbol for Christ.

This year marks the 26th anniversary of John Lennon’s death. His killer is still in jail, as it should be. The world of music was stripped of this musical genius. I miss his works and his imagination. If it weren’t for his outspoken beliefs, he might still be with us today. It may have been what killed him. But imagine (I wonder if you can), then there would never have been a John Lennon.

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