If you haven’t been tuned into any media resources, John Lennon would have been 70 this year. Reflecting on his life has been much of the focus and I don’t want to repeat a lot of what has already been said for the sake of writing about John Lennon. But in my own reflections about it, I discover some wisdom for myself.
Back before I was born, Lennon was spending time promoting peace in a time where the concepts and his actions were largely looked at radical, subversive and even threatening to some. The concept of peaceful protest and even cultivating larger ideas of world peace are often ideas that are met with violent opposition. When I am reminded of places like Burma, China and Tibet, places where people have sacrificed their lives trying to promote radical ideas like Democracy and peace, I am humbled. In my infinite freedom here, am I doing the best I can to promote or cultivate a better life for all?
Some choose “radical” paths. Others choose to cultivate peace within. But regardless of anyone’s path, it’s only my place and my path that I get to choose. Would I rather respond with anger today or understanding? Would I rather focus on the differences in the “other” or cultivate our similarities? Am I judging someone’s actions to feel better about myself or can I put myself in their shoes for a moment. Can I spend some time imaging a better world for all or just spend some time lamenting and wailing against the “opposition?”
While I may never sing a song that inspires the world around me to cultivate some different ways of thinking, I can work on cultivating my own different ways of thinking. I too, can be a radical, but not for the sake of being a radical, but being a better human being.
Graphic Credit: Kevin Boyd