A few days ago, Yoko Ono posted this remarkable message on her instagram, a perfect New Year’s wish. We’ve found some compelling images to go with it, and Ono’s spare, powerful recording of “Imagine”.
50 years ago, John and I had the idea to do the “WAR IS OVER! (If you want it)” campaign.
The experience and the memory of war was deeply imbedded in both our minds, and had become the springboard for our efforts to speak out for world peace. We did the “Bed-In for Peace”, unaware of the fact that we made our beds then, for life.
Pairs of Acorns were sent to all heads of States of the world, asking them to be planted for Peace.
“WAR IS OVER! (If you want it)” billboards were placed in main cities of several countries.
We announced the birth of a Nutopian nation: a conceptual country anybody could join and be the ambassador of. Our white flag, and ordinary bed-sheet, symbolized a surrendering to Peace. “Give Peace A Chance” was our chant. “Imagine” was our anthem and a song of prayer. “Imagine all the people living life in peace.” This was a song asking people to imagine, to visualize, and realize our future.
It was especially important that it was asking people to use the power of their own minds to make things happen.
The days of one hero building a castle for all of us are over. Our world is getting too complex for that. Now we need each of us to be a hero. The human race realized its dreams and innermost desires by wishing together. Sometimes, we got sidetracked and listened to destructive powers within us. When you read the history of the last century, you wonder how we ever survived its violent events. We did. And I am sure we will. They say the darkest hour is just before the dawn.
The road to Peace has been longer than John and I hoped it would be, but sitting here today as I write this, I can still see it waiting for us just over the horizon. Waiting for us to realize it’s already there.
In 1969, Yoko Ono and John Lennon seeded the world with their vision of peace. Fifty years later, Ono retains her faith in its possibility, that we humans can find out way if “each of us be a hero”.
In 2018, she released a new version of Imagine. Her spare voice gives “her “anthem and song of prayer” new power and resonance.
…it was asking people to use the power of their own minds to make things happen.