Updated January 29, 2015 (first published October 8, 2000) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, email@example.com)
Paul McCartney said, “We felt like gods” (Bob Spitz, The Beatles, p. 425).
They have been called “a revolution” and “a cultural earthquake.”
More than 8,000 books have been written about them. The Queen of England bestowed upon them the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 1965 and knighted Paul McCartney in 1997. In 2009, Liverpool Hope University began offering a Master of Arts degree in “The Beatles, Popular Music and Society.”
Their music was re-released in 1987 via compact disc and continues to sell well. It is played continuously on oldies radio stations. Their 2000 album, titled “1,” debuted at No. 1 on pop charts in the U.S.A. and 16 other countries and sold more than 3.6 million copies the first week. The album contains 27 of the Beatles No. 1 singles. A recent television special, The Beatles Revolution, attracted 8.7 million viewers to its first showing on ABC and is being rebroadcast by cable networks.
Even Contemporary Christian musicians are Beatles fans. For example, Phil Keaggy pays “homage to the Beatles” on his 1993 Crimson and Blue album. Galactic Cowboys admits that their biggest influence is the Beatles. Caedmon’s Call often performs Beatles music. dc Talk opened its “Jesus Freak” concerts with the Beatles’ song “Help.” Jars of Clay names Jimmy Hendrix and the Beatles as their inspiration. The lead guitarist is said to be a “Beatles fanatic.”
We give many more examples of this in the article “The Beatles and Contemporary Christian Music,” which is available at the Way of Life web site.
The Beatles’ influence permeates Western society and can be felt throughout the world. Countless rock & rollers could give the same testimony as that of Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, who said: “Their arrival in America in 1964 was electrifying, one of the most exciting things that ever happened in my life, and their music has always and will always mean so much to me.”
Sid Bernstein observed, “Only Hitler ever duplicated [the Beatles’] power over crowds. … when the Beatles talk—about drugs, the war in Vietnam, religion—millions listen, and this is the new situation in the pop music world” (Time, Sept. 22, 1967, p. 60). Rock critic Vern Stefanic noted that “Lennon was more than a musician” because he promoted “an anti-God theme, and anti-America, pro-revolution stance” (Tulsa World, Dec. 12, 1980, p. 20).
The Beatles even pioneered the longhaired look. “... the major impulse behind the rock androgyny of the Sixties was, in fact, of foreign origin . . . the Beatles. . . . the haircuts were so revolutionary by Sixties standards that they were viewed as signs of incipient transvestism” (Steven Simels, Gender Chameleons: Androgyny in Rock ‘n’ Roll, pp. 29, 30, 32).
Paul McCartney admitted their role in destroying traditional convention: “There they were in America, all getting house-trained for adulthood with their indisputable principle of life: short hair equals men; long hair equals women. Well, we got rid of that small convention for them. And a few others, too” (Barbara Ehrenreich, “Beatlemania: Girls Just Wanted to Have Fun,” cited by Lisa Lewis, The Adoring Audience: Fan Culture and Popular Media, p. 102).
The History of the Beatles
Called the “fab four,” The Beatles were composed of John Lennon (1940-1980), Paul McCartney (b. 1942), George Harrison (1943-2001) and Ringo Starr (born Richard Starkey) (b. 1940).
McCartney and Harrison had Roman Catholic mothers, but their fathers were not religious. Paul McCartney’s father, Jim, considered himself an agnostic. (When Jim McCartney died in 1976, Paul did not attend the funeral.)
Ringo’s mother and father separated when he was very young and later divorced; his mother worked as a barmaid at times. He never made an attempt to locate his father.
Lennon’s mother and father (Fred) had gotten married without her parent’s approval, and Fred left his little family to join the merchant marine when John was very small. John’s mother later lived with another man and had two daughters, though she never divorced Fred. In later life Lennon expressed hatred for his mother. His father’s second wife, Pauline, said that the mere mention of her name “triggered a vicious verbal attack on [his mother], whom he reviled in the most obscene language I had ever heard…” (Geoffrey Giuliano, Lennon in America, 2000, p. 17).
John was raised largely by his mother’s sister, his Aunt Mimi. She sent him to an Anglican Sunday school, where he sang in the choir. By age 11, though, he was permanently barred from Sunday services because he “repeatedly improvised obscene and impious lyrics to the hymns” (Timothy White, Rock Lives: Profiles and Interviews, p. 114). Lennon said that none of his church experiences touched him and that by age 19 he “was cynical about religion and never even considered the goings-on in Christianity.” It is sad that all Lennon experienced was corrupt Christianity in the form of dead Anglicanism.
By 1964, McCartney testified that none of them believed in God and that religion “doesn’t fit into my life.” Their drug experiences changed that, but the “god” they came to believe in was not the God of the Bible. McCartney described his God as “a force we are all a part of.” Lennon said, “We’re all God.”
John Lennon was the undisputed leader of the Beatles. By the late 1950s, he was a profane and brawling street tough. He shoplifted, abused girls, drew obscene pictures, lied “about everything,” despised authority, and was the ringleader of a group of rowdies. The young Lennon was also very cruel. He tried to frighten old people and made fun of those who were crippled or deformed.
The new music called rock & roll fit his licentious lifestyle. Later Lennon described himself as “a weird, psychotic kid covering up my insecurity with a macho façade” (Giuliano, Lennon in America, p. 2).
The other Beatles were also juvenile rowdies, if not outright delinquents. Even as a young teenager, Paul McCartney “became about the most sexually precocious boy of his year.” Paul stole things and drew dirty pictures. They rebelled against their fathers and other authority figures. Ringo’s first job was as a bartender on a ferryboat. He was also a thief and a truant during his youth. Even George Harrison, the “only one whose family background was normal and undramatic,” rebelled against the way his father wanted him to act and dress. He later testified: “Going in for flash clothes, or at least trying to be a bit different … was part of the rebelling. I never cared for authority” (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, p. 39). Harrison was in frequent trouble at school. When they began playing together in bands in their teenage years, they played in wicked places such as strip joints. They testified that they “got drunk a lot” and “had a lot of girls” (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, p. 77).
The Beatles were a product of 1950s American rock & roll. They listened to Radio Luxembourg’s weekend broadcasts of rockabilly and blues hits by Bill Haley, Fats Domino. Carl Perkins, and other fathers of rock music.
Lennon called Elvis Presley “the guru we’d been waiting for” and “the Messiah” (Bob Spitz, The Beatles, p. 41). Lennon said that “nothing really affected me until Elvis.” McCartney said: “[Elvis] was the biggest kick. Every time I felt low I just put on an Elvis and I’d feel great, beautiful.” Ringo said, “Elvis changed my life.”
They formed a rock band called the Quarrymen in the mid-1950s. By late 1957, the band included Lennon, Harrison, and McCartney, plus other young men on bass and drums. They combed their hair and dressed like Elvis and played rhythm & blues and Chuck Berry/Little Richard/Elvis type music. The group changed its name to the Silver Beetles in 1960, then simply to the Beatles, referring to the beat of their music. “John Lennon changed the name to Beatles to accent the drive of their music, the BEAT” (H.T. Spence,Confronting Contemporary Christian Music, p. 78).
Drummer Ringo Starr joined the group in 1962 just before they recorded their first single.
By 1963, “Beatlemania” was raging in England, and by 1964, the Beatles had leaped to international fame when “I Want to Hold Your Hand” skyrocketed to the top of the charts in the United States and they appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show. By April of that year the Beatles had the top five best-selling singles in America.
The Beatles set the tone for rock music and for the hippie youth culture in the 1960s until the band broke up in 1969. They led a generation of rebellious youth from marijuana to acid to “free sex” to eastern religion to revolution and liberal political/social activism. David Noebel observes: “The Beatles set trends, and their fans followed their lead. They were the vanguard of an entire generation who grew long hair, smoked grass, snorted coke, dropped acid, and lived for rock ‘n’ roll. They were the ‘cool’ generation” (The Legacy of John Lennon, p. 43).
The Beatles and Immorality
Ringo reported, “We got drunk a lot. You couldn’t help it. We had a lot of girls. We soon realized that they were easy to get” (TV Guide, July 29, 1978, p. 21). McCartney said: “We didn’t all get into music for a job! We got into it to avoid a job, in truth—and get lots of girls.” Lennon’s 21st birthday party was “a huge drunken noisy orgy” (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, p. 177).
Lennon called marriage a “stupid scene” and a mere “bit of paper.” He frequented prostitutes even in his teenage years, living in immorality before he was married, and then in adulterous relationships during his two marriages. His first wife, Cynthia, was pregnant when he finally married her in a clandestine ceremony in August 1962. No parents attended and the other band members dressed in black. On their wedding night, John hurried away for a performance. Of that first marriage, an acquaintance said, “John had no shame. He acted as if he were still a bachelor--even after the baby came” (Bob Spitz, The Beatles, p. 394).
Lennon and Yoko Ono lived together for a year while he was still married to Cynthia and Ono was married to an American filmmaker. When Cynthia returned from a vacation in Greece, she found Ono living with her husband in her own home. Ono was still married to another man when she announced that she was expecting a baby by Lennon. The mocking Two Virgins album cover featured the nude photos of Lennon and Ono on the front and back. (The album, which had no songs, was composed of sound effects and random voices.) Ono had been married several times and had a number of abortions before her alliance with Lennon.
Lennon said, “… intellectually, we knew marriage was a stupid scene, but we’re romantic and square as well as hip and aware. We lived together for a year before we got married, but we were still tied to other people by a bit of paper” (Davies, The Beatles). The two finally got married in March 1969. Ono wore a short mini-skirt and sunglasses. On their honeymoon, Lennon and Ono spent seven days in a public bed in Amsterdam, “to protest violence.” Later Lennon spent 18 months with his and Yoko’s secretary, May Pang, while he was married to Ono. Lennon was also involved in an adulterous relationship with the wife of the Beatles’ manager, Malcolm Evans (Giuliano, p. 107). Before he died, Lennon was addicted to pornographic movies.
After a long time of immoral partying, Ringo Starr married Maureen Starkey Tigrett in 1965. She was already pregnant with his child when he proposed to her after a night of drinking. In 1975, they went through a “rather messy, acrimonious divorce.” George Harrison had announced that he was in love with Ringo’s wife, and Ringo, for his part, admitted that he had an adulterous affair with actress Nancy Andrews. After the divorce, Ringo “started a wandering life.” In 1981, he married American actress and former Playboy model Barbara Bach.
George Harrison lived with Pattie Boyd before they were married in January 1966. In 1970, Eric Clapton wrote the famous rock love song, “Layla,” in honor of another man’s wife, as the woman Clapton was illicitly “in love” with was Harrison’s wife, Pattie. By 1973, Patti began living with with Clapton. Harrison and Pattie were finally divorced in 1977, and she married Clapton in 1979, but that marriage only lasted a few years. Harrison married Olivia Trinidad Arias in 1978, one month after their son, Dhani, was born. Harrison also had an adulterous affair with Ringo Starr’s wife Maureen.
Paul McCartney lived with Jane Asher for many years. She told the press: “I certainly don’t object to people having children when they are not married, and I think it is quite sensible to live together before you are married” (David Noebel, The Marxist Minstrels, p. 92). McCartney and Asher became engaged in January 1968, but she called it off after discovering his affair with an American woman. McCartney also lived with Linda Eastman before they were married in March 1969. She was four months pregnant at the time of the marriage, her second. Eastman died in 1998, and McCartney married Heather Mills in 2002 (divorced 2008) and Nancy Shevell in 2011.
George Harrison promised reporters that the Beatles would not be afraid to use any four-letter words in their songs. In fact, obscenities are quite common in Beatles’ compositions (Noebel, The Marxist Minstrels, pp. 104, 92).
The Beatles manager, BRIAN EPSTEIN, was a homosexual. After hearing the Beatles in a London pub, he became obsessed with making John Lennon his lover. Two years after the Beatles’ wildly successful 1964 America tour, Lennon accompanied Epstein to Barcelona, Spain, for a weekend that possibly included homosexual activity (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, introduction to the 1985 edition). Biographer Geoffrey Giuliano, who had access to Lennon’s diaries, concluded that there was “a pronounced homosexual element in Lennon’s makeup” (Lennon in America, p. 13).
During his last days, Epstein was constantly in the depths of depression, living on pills, having tantrums with his staff and closest friends over petty things” (Hunter Davies,The Beatles, introduction to the 1985 edition). He was also involved in extremely sordid homosexual alliances, even hiring tough guys to beat him up. Before signing as the Beatles’ manager, he had been arrested for solicitation in a public restroom or park.
Epstein died in 1967 at age 37 of a drug overdose. The death, from a cumulative effect of bromide in the drug Carbitral, was ruled accidental, but he had attempted suicide once before. Two other drugs were found in his body. One month before his death, homosexuality had been decriminalized in England.
The Beatles and Drugs
Testifying before the U.S. House Select Committee on Crime, popular family entertainer Art Linkletter, who lost a child to drug abuse, referred to the Beatles as the “leading missionaries of the acid society” (Crime in America—Illicit and Dangerous Drugs, October 1969). Media researcher Brian Key observed: “The Beatles became the super drug culture prophets … of all time” (Media Sexploitation, 1976, p. 136). The student newspaper for the University of Wisconsin noted that the Beatles have “proselytized the use of drugs so subtly that words and conceptions once only common to drug users are found in sentences of teeny-boppers and statesmen alike” (Daily Cardinal, Dec. 3, 1968, p. 5, cited by David Noebel, The Legacy of John Lennon, p. 63).
Lennon said, “We were smoking dope, drinking wine and generally being rock & rollers. ... It was party time” (Bob Spitz, The Beatles, p. 536). A friend of Lennon’s said, “John told me that there had never been a day in his life when he didn’t feel he needed some kind of drug” (Spitz, p. 393).
Beatles biographer Bob Spitz says that in the studio they were stoned “most of the time” and during the filming of the movie Help they “were so stoned they couldn’t remember lines” (The Beatles: The Biography, pp. 551, 602). By the end of their career as The Beatles “LSD permeated every aspect of their lives” (Spitz, p. 671).
The Beatles began taking drugs during their earliest band days before they became popular. Lennon claimed that he had been on pills since he was 17 and soon after turned to pot. He said: “I have always needed a drug to survive. The others, too, but I always had more, more pills, more of everything because I am more crazy, probably” (Noebel, The Marxist Minstrels, p. 111).
As a band, The Beatles started by taking slimming pills to stay awake during long performances. They were high on “prellies,” a form of speed called Phenmetrazine and marketed as Preludin. John Lennon was so out of control one night, that “when a customer over-enthusiastically approached the stage, he kicked him in the head twice, then grabbed a steak knife from a table and threw it at the man” (Harry Shapiro,Waiting for the Man, p. 107).
Many of the Beatles’ songs were about drugs. These include “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Day Tripper,” “Yellow Submarine,” “Help,” “Cold Turkey,” “Glass Onion,” “I Am the Walrus,” and “Penny Lane.” (The Beatles have admitted that these are drug songs.) BBC removed the Beatles’ song “A Day in the Life” from the air because of its drug implications. Their 1967 Sgt. Pepper’s album heralded the drug revolution in America (“Approbation on Drug Usage in Rock and Roll Music,” U.N. Bulletin on Narcotics, Oct.-Dec. 1969, p. 35; David Noebel, The Legacy of John Lennon, pp. 56,58).Time magazine reported that Sgt. Pepper’s was “drenched in drugs” (Sept. 22, 1967, p. 62). The album “galvanized the acid subculture and gave LSD an international platform” (Waiting for the Man, p. 145). On the Sgt. Pepper’s album Ringo Starr sang, “I get high with a little help from my friends.” The members of the Beatles later openly admitted that the album was “a drug album” (James Miller, Flowers in the Dustbin: The Rise of Rock & Roll, p. 253). Sgt. Pepper’s was hugely influential, one of the best-selling albums of rock history. TheLondon Times’ theater critic Kenneth Tynan observed that the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’salbum was “a decisive moment in the history of Western civilization.”
Lennon admitted that he began taking LSD in 1964 and that “it went on for years. I must have had a thousand trips … a thousand. I used to just eat it all the time” (Rolling Stone, Jan. 7, 1971, p. 39; cited by Jann Wenner, Lennon Remembers, p. 76). John Lennon read Timothy Leary’s book The Psychedelic Experience in 1966, after Paul McCartney took him to the Indica, a hip New Age bookshop in London. He wrote the songs “Come Together” and “Give Peace a Chance” for Leary. Lennon wrote “Tomorrow Never Knows” after taking LSD.
Lennon told a Rolling Stone interviewer that there were “a lot of obvious LSD things in the music.” Lennon said, “God isn’t in a pill, but LSD explained the mystery of life. It was a religious experience.”
In an interview with Playboy, Lennon said the Beatles smoked marijuana for breakfast and were so stoned that they were “just all glazed eyes.” The Beatles took out a full-page ad in the London Times (June 1967), calling for the legalization of marijuana. In 1969, Lennon said: “If people can’t face up to the fact of other people being naked or smoking pot … then we’re never going to get anywhere” (Penthouse, Oct. 1969, p. 29, cited in Noebel, The Legacy of John Lennon, p. 66). Paul McCartney told Life magazine that he was “deeply committed to the possibilities of LSD as a universal cure-all.” He went on to say, “After I took it, it opened my eyes. We only use one-tenth of our brain. Just think what all we could accomplish if we could only tap that hidden part. It would mean a whole new world. If politicians would use LSD, there would be no more war, poverty or famine” (Life, June 16, 1967, p. 105).
In 1968, Lennon and Yoko Ono were arrested for marijuana possession. The drug conviction nearly cost Lennon the right to live in the United States. In April 1969, George Harrison and his wife, Patti, were arrested at their home and charged with possession of 120 joints of marijuana. The drugs were found by a police dog. They pleaded guilty and were fined. In 1972, Paul McCartney and his wife, Linda, pleaded guilty to smuggling marijuana into Sweden. In 1973, McCartney pleaded guilty to growing marijuana on his farm in Scotland. McCartney’s wife was arrested in Los Angeles in 1975 for possession of marijuana. In 1980, McCartney was arrested by customs officials at Tokyo International Airport when nearly a half-pound of marijuana was discovered in his suitcase. He was kicked out of Japan after being detained for nine days. In 1984, McCartney and his wife, Linda, were fined 70 pounds by Barbados magistrates for possession of marijuana. A few days later, Linda McCartney was charged again, for importing marijuana into Heathrow Airport.
Drugs were involved when Mel Evans, former Beatles road manager, was shot to death by police in 1976 during an argument involving a rifle. His girlfriend had called the police and told them that Mal had taken Valium and was “totally messed up,” and when he allegedly made threatening gestures with the gun, they shot him. The rifle was not loaded. He was in his 40s.
From a biblical perspective it is obvious that the rebellion and heavy drug usage brought the Beatles into communion with demons and that their music was written under this influence. Consider this description of how John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote their music: “Into the night, stretching almost until dawn, the two most important songwriters of their generation hallucinated like madmen, staring inscrutably into each other’s eyes--‘the eye contact thing we used to do,’ Paul called it--and communing with the unknown. He imagined they ‘dissolve[d] into each other’ and envisioned John as ‘a king, the absolute Emperor of Eternity’” (Bob Spitz, The Beatles, pp. 672, 673).
The “unknown” they were communing with is identified by the Bible. It is the “darkness of this world” that is ruled over by “principalities and powers” led by the devil (Ephesians 6:12). He is called “the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:2).
The Beatles and Revolution
The Beatles promoted the revolutionary overthrow of authority in songs such as “Revolution No. 9,” “Working Class Hero,” “Back in the USSR,” “Power to the People,” “Sometime in New York City,” “Give Peace a Chance,” “Bloody Sunday” (which called British police “Anglo pigs”), “Attica State” (“now’s the time for revolution”), “Angela” (which glorified communist Angela Davis), and “Piggies.”
Lennon performed at anti-America rallies and called upon America to leave Vietnam to the communists. He said: “I really thought that love would save us. But now I’m wearing a Chairman Mao badge, that’s where it’s at. I’m just beginning to think he’s doing a good job” (cited by Jann Wenner, Lennon Remembers, p. 86). We wonder why Lennon didn’t move to China to live in Mao’s paradise instead of relocating to that terrible place called America?
Lennon gave the violent Students for Democratic Society (SDS) $5,000, hoping it would assist those who were being sought by police for bombings. Though Lennon later characterized his radicalism as “phony” and motivated by guilt for his wealth (Newsweek, Sept. 29, 1980, p. 77), “its effect was deadly real” (Noebel, The Marxist Minstrels, p. 78).
The Times characterized the Beatles movie “A Hard Day’s Night” as an “exercise in anarchy.”
Lennon said, “I like a riot” (Spitz, The Beatles, p. 522). Even as early as the beginning of 1961, before they became international rock stars, the Beatles experienced rioting at their concerts. “In most places the appearance ended in riots, especially when Paul sang ‘Long Tall Sally,’ a standard rock number but done with tremendous beat and excitement. They were beginning to realize the effect they could have on an audience and often made the most of it, until things got out of hand. Paul says that some of the early ballrooms were terrifying” (Hunter Davies, The Beatles, p. 94). The Beatles fans used fire extinguishers on each other at the Hambledone Hall. Paul McCartney said: “When we played ‘Hully Gully,’ that used to be one of the tunes which ended in fighting.” Neil Aspinall, the road manager for the Beatles, testified that “they were beginning to cause riots everywhere.” A British rock fan magazine of that time observed that the reason for the violence was that the Beatles “symbolised the rebellion of youth.”
When the Beatles broke into international fame, the rioting became even worse. Bob Spitz observes that “there was no precedent for the kind of mayhem the Beatles provoked” (The Beatles, p. 520). The concert at Shea Stadium in New York City in August 1965 was described as “mass hysteria.” The New York Times reporter said the sound from the crowd “crossed the line from enthusiasm into hysteria and was soon in the area of the classic Greek meaning of the word pandemonium--the region of all demons” (Spitz, p. 577). Even Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones described it as “frightening.”
At the San Francisco concert that month, a security guard was knocked unconscious by a Coke bottle, and the show was stopped midway so that police could rescue a pregnant woman who was being trampled (Spitz, p. 583). In Vancouver, British Columbia, a police inspector said, “These people have lost all ability to think.” One hundred and sixty girls required medical attention (Spitz, p. 524). A policeman in Adelaide, Australia, described the scene as “frightening, chaotic, and rather inhuman” (Spitz, p. 510). When they arrived back in England from their first overseas tour, a crowd of thousands of teenagers “went on a rampage through Heathrow Airport, bending steel crash barriers and demolishing car roofs as if they were made of tinfoil” (Spitz, p. 486).
The British parliament discussed “the thousands of extra policemen all around the country who were being made to do extra, and dangerous, duty because of the Beatles” (Davies, The Beatles, p. 184). During the Beatles’ last tour in the United States, the crowds surged forward and viciously bashed in the roof of the limousine they thought the Beatles were in. As it turned out, the band members had been smuggled out in an ambulance.
The Beatles and Pagan Religion
In the summer of 1967, the four Beatles and other rock stars, including Brian Jones and Mike Jagger of the Rolling Stones, visited Guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi during his trip to North Wales and listened to the teachings that he called the “Spiritual Regeneration Movement.” Maharishi claimed to have a path of regeneration other than that of being born again through faith in Jesus Christ. In 1968, the Beatles, along with Donovan, Mia Farrow, Mike Love of the Beach Boys, and others, visited the Maharishi’s ashram on the banks of the River Ganges in India to study Transcendental Meditation (TM). Though some try to deny it, TM is a Hindu practice and is based on the concept that the universe is God and man can tap into God through mysticism. Maharishi called TM “a path to God” and “the spontaneous flow of knowledge.” The TM practitioner uses a mantra to put himself into an altered state of consciousness.
The Beatles soon split with the Maharishi. One reason was his suggestion that they turn over 25 percent of their income to his work. Another was that they caught the guru eating meat, which was not allowed to his disciples, and engaging in acts of immorality with female disciples. Lennon composed a song about the Maharishi entitled “Sexy Sadie,” claiming that the guru had made a sexual advance on a female member of their group.
The Beatles also had a central role in popularizing the Hare Krishna movement in the West. In December 1966, Hindu Swami Bhaktivedanta recorded an album of chanting titled Krishna Consciousness. The recording was done in New York City, where George Harrison had been participating in Hare Krishna chanting sessions in Tompkins Square Park. He took the album back to England and the Beatles ordered 100 copies of it. Soon after that, Harrison and Lennon sang the Hare Krishna chant “for days” during a sailing trip through the Greek islands. Harrison reminisced, “Like six hours we sang, because we couldn’t stop once we got going.”
In September 1969, at the invitation of the Beatles, the Hindu Swami moved to England and set up shop at Tittenhurst Park, an 80-acre estate owned by Lennon. Three or four times a week he gave public lectures in a building at the north end of the property, about 100 yards from the main house, in which John and his second wife, Yoko, lived. A Hindu altar was set up there and eventually the building was called “the Temple.” The Swami, who took the impressive but blasphemous title of His Divine Grace, founded the Hare Krishna movement. In June of 1969, Hare Krishna followers sang with John and Yoko in Montreal, Canada, on the recording of “Give Peace a Chance,” a song that would become extremely influential. John and Yoko chanted “Hare Krishna” on that song. “The Hare Krishna devotees had been visiting with the Lennons for several days, discussing world peace and self-realization.” The Lennons recorded the song to promote the Hindu concept of world peace.
That same summer, George Harrison produced a hit single, “The Hare Krishna Mantra,” which featured Hindus from the London Radha-Krishna Temple. It rose to the Top Ten and made the idolatrous Hare Krishna chant a household word in the West. Harrison co-signed the lease on the first Hare Krishna temple in London. He also gave them a mansion outside London, which they made into an international ashram, where hundreds of thousands of people have learned about Hinduism in the heart of the old British Empire. Harrison financed the publication of Krishna magazine and put up $19,000 to print the first edition of the Krishna book in 1970. In his introduction, Harrison said, “As GOD is unlimited. HE has many Names. Allah-Buddha-Jehova-Rama: All are KRISHNA, all are ONE.”
By 1982, a leader in the Hare Krishna movement said it is “growing like wildfire” and “Krishna consciousness has certainly spread more in the last sixteen years than it has since the sixteenth century” (interview with George Harrison at the Hare Krishna web site). Today the complete works of Prabhupada are in all the major colleges and universities of the world. Millions upon millions of people have been influenced to think more favorably of pagan gods because of the Beatles.
Lennon continued to practice yoga. “If John’s energy level and ambition were running high, a half hour or more of yoga was next on the agenda. . . . Outside of walking, yoga was the only exercise he ever did. But spiritual rather than physical reasons motivated him to continue meditating. . . . [He believed yoga could help him achieve his greatest ambition, which was] a state of spiritual perfection by following The Way of The Masters: Jesus, Buddha, Mohammed, Krishna and Gandhi. . . . John believed that if he meditated long and hard enough, he’d merge with God and acquire psychic powers, like clairvoyance and the ability to fly through the air. And he wanted those powers as badly as he wanted anything” (Robert Rosen, Nowhere Man, p. 18).
Lennon defined God in Hindu terms. In an interview with the British newspaper The Daily Sketch, October 9, 1967, Lennon was asked if he believed in “a superior force, a God?” He replied:“It’s an energy. I don’t and never did imagine God as one thing. But now I can see God as a power source - or as an energy. But you can’t see any kind of energy, only track it on radar or things like that. You can be aware of your own energy and all the energy that's around you. All the energy is God. Your own energy and their energy, whether doing god-like things or ungodly things. It's all like one big jelly. We’re all in the big jelly.”
This is the Hindu concept that God is everything and everything is God and evil and good are the same.
George Harrison continued to follow Hinduism until his death. Harrison admitted toRolling Stone magazine that the drug LSD opened his mind to this pagan religion. “Although up until LSD, I never realized that there was anything beyond this state of consciousness. … I think for me it was definitely LSD. The first time I took it, it just blew everything away. I had such an overwhelming feeling of well-being, that there was a God, and I could see him in every blade of grass” (Rolling Stone, Nov. 5 - Dec. 10, 1987, p. 48). The creator of LSD, Dr. Albert Hofman, also testified that the hallucinogenic drug led him into Hindu meditation (Mark Spaulding, The Heartbeat of the Dragon, p. 75).
Harrison’s 1971 song “MY SWEET LORD,” which he published the year following the breakup of the Beatles, is a song of praise to the Hindu god Krishna. It mentions the long process of achieving Nirvana through meditation and mysticism. At the end of the song, there is a little ruse, when the words “hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah” cunningly and almost imperceptibly merge into “Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Hare Rama.” Thus the song transforms from a form of Christian praise to the praise of the Hindu god Krishna.
Harrison admitted that he did that to trick people. In his 1982 interview with the Hare Krishna organization he said, “I wanted to show that Hallelujah and Hare Krishna are quite the same thing. I did the voices singing ‘Hallelujah’ and then the change to ‘Hare Krishna’ so that people would be chanting the maha-mantra before they knew what was going on! ... MY IDEA IN ‘MY SWEET LORD,’ BECAUSE IT SOUNDED LIKE A ‘POP SONG,’ WAS TO SNEAK UP ON THEM A BIT. The point was to have the people not offended by ‘Hallelujah,’ and by the time it gets to ‘Hare Krishna,’ they’re already hooked, and their foot’s tapping, and they’re already singing along ‘Hallelujah,’ to kind of lull them into a sense of false security. And then suddenly it turns into ‘Hare Krishna,” and they will all be singing that before they know what’s happened, and they will think, ‘Hey, I thought I wasn’t supposed to like Hare Krishna! . . . IT WAS JUST A LITTLE TRICK REALLY.”
The trick worked, because when it first came out many Christians thought Harrison was glorifying the Lord of the Bible. Harrison said, “Ten years later they’re still trying to figure out what the words mean” (Ibid.).
The song was immensely popular. The album on which it appeared, All Things Must Pass, was the top-selling album in America for seven weeks straight. Another song on that album, “Awaiting on You All,” also deals with Hinduism and chanting.
Harrison sang about Krishna in three other albums: Living in the Material World(1973), Dark Horse (1974), and Somewhere in England (1982). Living in the Material World had the lyrics: “I hope to get out of this place/ By the Lord Sri Krishna’s grace/ My salvation from the material world.” The album cover contained a photo of the Hindu god Krishna and promoted the Bhagavad-gita, the Hindu scriptures. During his 1974 concerts in America, Harrison led audiences in the Hare Krishna mantra. In 1987, Harrison testified that Hinduism was still a part of his life. “I still believe the purpose of our life is to get God-realization. There’s a science that goes with that, the science of self-realization. It’s still very much a part of my life, but it’s sort of very personal, very private” (People, Oct. 19, 1987, p. 64).
The song “Tomorrow Never Knows” was inspired by John Lennon’s “drug-addled readings” from the occultic Tibetan Book of the Dead (Robert Seay, Stairway to Heaven, p. 140). The lyrics say: “Turn off your mind relax and float downstream. It is not dying. It is not dying. Lay down all thoughts, surrender to the void. It is shining. It is shining. That you may see the meaning of within. It is being. It is being.”
Lennon was strongly influenced by Van Gogh and Marcel Duchamp, depraved artists and philosophers who taught that life is meaningless. “These men were the textbook teachers of Lennon when he attended the Liverpool Art School. Both he and Yoko Ono were much involved in avant-garde art, and their music certainly reveals this fact” (H.T. Spence, Confronting Contemporary Christian Music, p. 41). In 1965, Lennon was asked, “What will you do when Beatlemania subsides?” He replied: “I don’t suppose I think much about the future. I don’t really [care]. Though now we’ve made it, it would be a pity to get bombed. It’s selfish, but I don’t care too much about humanity--I’m an escapist. Everybody’s always drumming on about the future but I’m not letting it interfere with my laughs, if you see what I mean” (Seay, Stairway to Heaven, p. 128).
Lennon and Yoko Ono were fascinated by the occult. He purchased entire sections of occult literature in bookstores (Gary Patterson, Hellhounds on Their Trail, p. 181). Occultist John Green was hired by Yoko Ono in 1974 to be her tarot card reader. “As time went on he became Lennon’s advisor, confidant and friend. Until October 1980, he worked closely with them. They did everything according to ‘the cards.’ He advised them on all of their business transactions and investments, even to the point of how to handle the problems Lennon was having with Apple, the Beatles record company” (Song Magazine, February 1984, p. 16, cited by More Rock, Country & Backward Masking Unmasked, p. 105). “People were hired and fired based on the findings of the tarot card reader, Charlie Swan; the Council of Seers, an assortment of freelance astrologers, psychics and directionalists; and Yoko’s own consultations with the zodiac and Book of Numbers” (Robert Rosen, Nowhere Man, p. 38).
Yoko followed the Asian philosophy of katu-tugai, which combined numerology with cartography. According to the tenets of katu-tugai, traveling in a westerly direction ensures good luck. In 1977, Yoko spent a week in South America studying magic with a seven-foot-tall Columbian witch, who was paid $60,000 to teach Yoko how to cast spells. “The Lennons saw magic as both an instrument of crisis management and the ideal weapon” (Rosen, p. 62). They cast magic spells against their opponents in lawsuits (Geoffrey Giuliano, Lennon in America, p. 119) and even against Paul and Linda McCartney when they simply wanted to visit the Lennons in 1980 (p. 208).
Lennon believed in UFOs, and he religiously read the tabloid reports on these. He claimed to have seen a UFO hovering over the East River in 1974, and his song “Nobody Told Me,” which appeared on his Milk and Honey album, was about UFOs over New York. Lennon was fascinated with a book called The Lost Spear of Destiny, which was about the spear used to pierce the side of Jesus Christ when He was on the cross. Lennon fantasized about finding the spear. When asked what he would do with it if he found it, Lennon replied that he could do anything in the universe (Giuliano, p. 81).
Lennon and Yoko participated in séances, and Yoko believed that she was a reincarnation of a 3,000-year-old Persian mummy that she had purchased in Switzerland (Giuliano, p. 157). She collected Egyptian artifacts, believing they possessed magical powers.
Yoko Ono believed the Hindu myth that a son born on his father’s birthday inherits his soul when the father dies. Thus, they arranged to have their son, Sean, delivered by cesarean on Lennon’s 35th birthday, October 9, 1975 (Gary Patterson, Hellhounds on Their Trail: Tales from the Rock ‘n’ Roll Graveyard, p. 183). Yoko “was convinced the baby would be a messiah who would one day change the world” (Giuliano, p. 101).
Lennon and Yoko’s prognosticators frequently gave false predictions. When Yoko was pregnant, I Ching predicted the baby was a girl; but it was actually a boy (Giuliano, p. 88). In 1976, Yoko’s psychic advisers suggested that Lennon should not resume his musical career until 1982, but he died two years before that (Giuliano, p. 108). A psychic Yoko consulted in 1977 in Rome predicted that Lennon would become musically productive again in 1980 and that this phase would last two years, but Lennon died in 1980 (Giuliano, p. 144). In 1979, only a year before Lennon’s death, Yoko’s advisers forecast that she and John would have two more children (Giuliano, p. 192).
The Beatles were immensely influential in promoting one-world, New Age thought. In 1967, for example, their song “All You Need Is Love” (referring not to the love of God through Jesus Christ or to love defined biblically, but to a vague humanistic “love”) was broadcast to more than 150 million people via a television program called Our World.
After his wife Linda’s death, Paul McCartney told the press that he was committed to “fate.” He said: “The Beatles had an expression: something will happen. That’s about as far as I get with philosophy. There’s no point mapping out next year. Fate is much more magical” (Paul McCartney, USA Today, Oct. 15, 1999, p. 8E).
The Beatles and the Occult
The Beatles had a fascination with the anti-christ occultist Aleister Crowley.
Crowley brazenly rejected the Bible and Jesus Christ. “That religion they call Christianity; the devil they honor they call God. I accept these definitions, as a poet must do, if he is to be at all intelligible to his age, and it is their God and their religion that I hate and will destroy. ... I do not wish to argue that the doctrines of Jesus, they and they alone, have degraded the world to its present condition. I take it that Christianity is not only the cause but the symptom of slavery” (Crowley, The World’s Tragedy, pp. xxx, xxxix).
Crowley’s own mother referred to him as “The Great Beast of Revelation whose number is 666,” and he was pleased with the title. The Sunday Express called him “one of the most sinister figures of modern times” and charged him with being “a drug fiend, an author of vile books, the spreader of obscene practices.”
Crowley has had a great influence on rock & roll. The International Times voted Crowley “the unsung hero of the hippies.”
This is because of Crowley’s licentious lifestyle and anti-God, anti-law philosophy, which he summarized as follows: “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.”
Crowley was one of characters who appeared on the cover of the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’salbum, and they testified that these were their “heroes.”
John Lennon said that “the whole Beatle idea was to do what you want … do what thou wilst, as long as it doesn’t hurt somebody” (Lennon, cited by David Sheff, The Playboy Interviews with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, p. 61).
Paul McCartney’s 2013 hit song “New” preached Crowley’s lie:“We can do what we want; we can live as we choose. See there’s no guarantee; we’ve got nothing to lose” (“New,” Paul McCartney, 2013).
The man who sang about love (“all you need is love”) and peace (“give peace a chance”) was actually non-compassionate, self-centered, and violent. His biographers speak of “the infamous Lennon temper.” He frequently flew into rages, screaming, smashing things, hitting people. He admitted, “I was a hitter. I couldn’t express myself and I hit. I fought men and I beat women” (Giuliano, Lennon in America, p. 20).
On one adulterous weekend fling with his secretary, May Pang, Lennon “accused her of cheating on him, and flew into a rage, trashing the room and trampling her eyeglasses” (Giuliano, p. 16). Lennon admitted: “I was a very jealous, possessive guy. A very insecure male. A guy who wants to put his woman in a little box and only bring her out when he feels like playing with her” (Giuliano, p. 16).
When the owner of a nightclub said something that upset Lennon, he “beat the poor man mercilessly” (Giuliano, p. 8). At a party in California in 1973, Lennon “went berserk, hurling a chair out the window, smashing mirrors, heaving a TV against the wall, and screaming nonsense about film director Roman Polanski being to blame” (Giuliano, p. 57). During the recording of his Rock ‘n’ Roll album, Lennon “was so out of control he began to kick the windows out of the car and later trashed the house” (Giuliano, p. 59).
Lennon confided to a friend, “I’ve always wondered what it would be like to kill a woman, many women! It was only becoming a Beatle that saved me from actually doing it” (Giuliano, p. 20). When Yoko was pregnant with their son (Sean Ono Taro Lennon), John Lennon once kicked her in the stomach during an explosive confrontation; Lennon later hit the young Sean, even kicking him once in a restaurant (Giuliano, pp. 111, 138). In 1979, Lennon flew into a rage and trashed his apartment while “filling the air with a stream of profane invective” (Giuliano, p. 179).
As for love, even Lennon’s celebrated relationship with Yoko Ono was filled with everything but love. After 1971, “John and Yoko’s great love was pretty much a public charade designed to help prop up their often flickering careers” (Giuliano, p. 147). In 1972, the Sunday Mirror described John Lennon and Yoko Ono as “one of the saddest, loneliest couples in the world . . . two people who have everything that adds up to nothing.” On their 10th wedding anniversary in 1979, Lennon thought Yoko was mocking him when she gave him a sentimental little poem referring to him as the ruler of their kingdom, and he flew into a selfish rage when she gave him an expensive pearl-and-diamond ring, claiming that “she never got him what he really wanted.” After that, Lennon retreated to his room and fell into a narcotic-induced slumber.
After Lennon’s death, his son Julian (the son by his first wife) perceptively asked: “How can you talk about peace and love and have a family in bits and pieces, no communication, adultery, divorce?” (Giuliano, p. 220).
Lennon’s Near Insanity
There were many evidences of insanity during Lennon’s final years. In the early 1970s, Lennon and Yoko underwent psychological therapy at the Primal Institute in California. Dr. Janov testified: “John was simply not functioning. He really needed help” (Giuliano,Lennon in America, p. 18). The therapy consisted of giving oneself over to hysterical outbursts in an attempt to purge the psyche. Lennon would scream and wail, weep, and roll on the floor.
“John eventually confessed to several dark sexual impulses: he wanted to be spanked or whipped and he was drawn to the notion of having a spiked boot heel driven into him. ... Later in his life, John gathered together a collection of S&M-inspired manikins, which he kept tucked away in the bowels of the Dakota. These dummies, adorned with whips and chains, also had their hands and feet manacled. John’s violent sexual impulses troubled Yoko” (Giuliano, p. 19).
Lennon was plagued by nightmares from which he awoke in terror (Giuliano, pp. 83, 137, 142).
Lennon was obsessed with his weight and when he found himself overeating, he would hide in the master bedroom and force himself to vomit (Giuliano, p. 92).
After the couple moved into the Dakota apartments in New York City in 1973, Lennon spent most of the time locked indoors. He referred to himself as Greta Hughes, referring to Greta Garbo and Howard Hughes, famous recluses. “More and more, the increasingly reclusive Lennon began to shun his friends. ... Lennon’s anxieties were rapidly getting the better of him. ... Everybody’s working-class hero was sliding steadily into a morass of hopelessness and solemnity” (Giuliano, pp. 84, 97, 105). He “quietly slipped into a dark hibernation,” spending entire days in bed (Giuliano, p. 129).
To help him conquer his $700 per day heroin habit, Yoko introduced him to a form of therapy involving self-hypnosis and “past-life regression.” He thought he was actually traveling back into his past lives. In one session he discovered that he had been a Neanderthal man. In another, he was involved in the Crusades during the Dark Ages.
Lennon was so paranoid that when he visited Hong Kong in 1976, he did not leave his suite for three days. He thought he had multiple personalities, and he would lie down and imagine that his various personalities were in other parts of the room talking to him. “In doing so, Lennon was in such a state of mind that the slightest noise or shadow would terrify him” (Giuliano, p. 122). When he went out into the crowds he would hear “a cacophony of terrible voices in his head” which filled him with terror. When he returned to New York, he became a virtual hermit, “retreating to his room, sleeping his days away, mindlessly standing at the window watching the rain. Once Yoko found him staring off into space groaning that there was no place he could go where he didn’t feel abandoned and isolated…” (Giuliano, p. 142).
In 1978, Lennon “locked himself into his pristine, white-bricked, white-carpeted Dakota bedroom. Lying on the bed, he chain-smoked Gitane cigarettes and stared blankly at his giant television, while the muted phone at his side was lit by calls he never took. . . . he stayed in a dark room with the curtains drawn…” (Giuliano, pp. 173, 174).
By 1979, at age 39, “John Lennon was already an old man haunted by his past and frightened by the future” (Giuliano, Lennon in America, p. 177). He swung radically “from snappy impatience to bouts of uncontrolled weeping” and could only sleep with the aid of narcotics. Yoko talked Lennon into visiting their Virginia farm in 1979, but he became so paranoid and shaken from the brief excursion into the public (they rode a train) that when they arrived back at their home in New York he “erupted violently, reducing the apartment to a shambles.” The man who is acclaimed as the towering genius behind the Beatles had “all but lost his creative drive and confessed he’d sunk so low he had even become terrified of composing” (Giuliano, p. 130).
The Beatles’ Blasphemy
Their press officer, Derek Taylor, testified: “They’re [the Beatles] completely anti-Christ. I mean, I am anti-Christ as well, but they’re so anti-Christ they shock me which isn’t an easy thing” (Saturday Evening Post, August 8-15, 1964, p. 25). That same year Paul McCartney stated, “We probably seem to be anti-religious ... none of us believes in God.”
We have seen that by age 11, John Lennon was permanently barred from Sunday services in his aunt’s Anglican congregation because he “repeatedly improvised obscene and impious lyrics to the hymns.” He did things even cruder and viler than that, such as urinate on members of the “clergy” from second floor windows and display homemade dummies of Christ in lewd poses.
In 1966, Lennon created a furor by claiming: “Christianity will go, it will vanish and shrink. I needn’t argue about that. I’m right and will be proved right. ... We’re more popular than Jesus now” (Newsweek, March 21, 1966). Though he claimed that he was misunderstood and gave a half-hearted apology (after learning that his remarks might financially jeopardize their United States tour), it is obvious what the head Beatle thought about Christianity.
In his 1965 book A Spaniard in the Works, which was published by Simon and Schuster, Lennon portrayed Jesus Christ as Jesus El Pifico, a “garlic eating, stinking little yellow, greasy fascist bastard Catholic Spaniard.” In this wicked book, Lennon blasphemed the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit by calling them “Fahter, Sock, and Mickey Most.”
Lennon’s 1970 album, Plastic Ono Band, contained two anti-christ songs. On “I Found Out,” Lennon sang, “I told you before, stay away from my door. Don’t give me that brother, brother, brother, brother. . . . There ain’t no Jesus gonna come from the sky.” In the song “God,” Lennon boldly said, “I don't believe in magic. I don't believe in Bible. I don't believe in tarot. I don't believe in Jesus. I just believe in me. Yoko and me. That’s reality.”
George Harrison financed Monty Python’s vile and blasphemous Life of Brian, which even Newsweek magazine described as “irreverent.” Time magazine called it an “intense assault on religion” (Sept. 17, 1979, p. 101).
Paul McCartney described himself and the other Beatles as “four iconoclastic, brass-hard, post-Christian, pragmatic realists” (Time, Sept. 5, 1968, p. 60).
The anti-christ occultist Aliester Crowley’s photo appeared on the Beatles’ Sargent Pepper’s album cover, and the Beatles testified that the characters on the album were their “heroes.” John Lennon explained to Playboy magazine that “the whole Beatles idea was to do what you want … do what thou wilst, as long as it doesn’t hurt somebody” (Lennon, cited by David Sheff, The Playboy Interviews with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, p. 61). This was precisely what Crowley taught.
Lennon claimed that the Beatles knew exactly what they wanted to do. “We know what we are because we know what we’re doing. … There were very few things that happened to the Beatles that weren’t really well thought out by us whether to do it or not” (Rolling Stone, Feb. 12, 1976, p. 92).
Lennon’s Flirtation with Christianity
In 1977, Lennon made a short-lived profession of faith in Christ while watching television evangelists. (This information was published in two different books—Robert Rosen, Nowhere Man: The Final Days of John Lennon and Geoffrey Giuliano, Lennon in America).
Lennon began to use expressions like “Praise the Lord” and “Thank you, Jesus”; attended some church services; wrote a never-released song entitled “You Saved My Soul”; took his son, Sean, to a Christian theater performance; called The 700 Club help line to request prayer for his troubled marriage; and tried to get Yoko Ono interested in Christianity. (Her first husband, Anthony Cox, had become a Christian in the 1970s, but she wanted nothing to do with it.)
Even though he briefly professed faith in Christ, Lennon did not turn from his occultism. He continued to perform magical rites, consult the horoscope and prognosticators, and celebrate Buddha’s birthday (Giuliano, p. 133).
Lennon’s repentance-less Christian profession lasted only a few weeks. When two missionaries confronted Lennon with fundamental doctrines of the Bible such as the deity of Christ and a literal fall of man, he rejected this teaching (Giuliano, p. 134).
In 1979, Lennon wrote a song titled “Serve Yourself,” in which he instructed his listeners: “You got to serve yourself/ Nobody gonna do it for you/ You may believe in devils/ You may believe in laws/ But you know you’re gonna have to serve yourself.”
In interviews in December 1980, just before his death, he described his beliefs as “Zen Christian, Zen pagan, Zen Marxist” or nothing at all (Steve Turner, “The Ballad of John and Jesus,” Christianity Today, June 12, 2000, p. 86).
Lennon testified that he had never met a Christian who wasn’t actually a sanctimonious hypocrite (Giuliano, p. 134). Lennon also said that he did not believe in the Judeo-Christian doctrine that God “is some other thing outside of ourselves” (Spin, February 1987, p. 46). Thus to the very end of his short life Lennon continued to lead his followers into eternal destruction.
Lennon was shot to death in December 1980 outside his apartment building in New York City. He was 40 years old. In an interview with Gannett News Service, Lennon’s murderer, Mark David Chapman, testified of how he prepared for the crime: “Alone in my apartment back in Honolulu, I would strip naked and put on Beatles records and pray to Satan to give me the strength. … I prayed for demons to enter my body to give me the power to kill” (interview with James Gaines, People magazine, February and March 1987). Chapman said that he heard voices telling him to murder Lennon. He told psychic investigator Chip Coffey that he was possessed by two demons (“With a Little Help from My Friends: Did Demons Force Mark David Chapman to Murder John Lennon,” Haunted Times Magazine, Winter 2007).
Just hours before he was killed, Lennon had posed naked in a photo that was published on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
At the beginning of the Beatles song “Come Together,” Lennon mutters, “Shoot me.” One of the Beatles songs was “Happiness Is a Warm Gun.” The lyrics are: “When I hold you in my arms (Oh, yeah)/ And I feel my finger on your trigger (Oh, yeah)/ I know nobody can do me no harm (Oh, yeah)/ Because happiness is a warm gun, bang, bang, shoot, shoot.”
Since Lennon’s death, Yoko Ono has attempted to contact him. The cover to her albumIt’s Alright shows Yoko and her son, Sean, standing in a park with a spirit form of Lennon standing next to them. Lennon’s other son, Julian (his only child by his first wife, Cynthia), claims in his song “Well, I Don’t Know” that he has communicated with his dead father (Muncy, The Role of Rock, p. 364).
When Lennon died, his estate was estimated to be worth $275 million. In 2006 it was estimated at $775 million.
In summarizing the influence of John Lennon, rock researcher David A. Noebel stated: “The present rock ‘n’ roll scene, Lennon’s legacy, is one giant, multi-media portrait of degradation—a sleazy world of immorality, venereal disease, anarchy, nihilism, cocaine, heroin, marijuana, death, Satanism, perversion, and orgies” (Noebel, The Legacy of John Lennon, 1982, p. 15).
Lennon released his hugely popular song “Imagine” in 1971. He described it as “an anti-religious, anti-nationalistic, anti-conventional, anti-capitalistic song.” Note the blasphemous words.“Imagine there’s no heaven, it’s easy if you try/ No hell below us, above only sky/ Imagine all the people living for today. Imagine there’s no countries; it isn’t hard to do/ Nothing to kill or die for, and no religion too/ Imagine all the people living in peace. Imagine no possessions; I wonder if you can/ No need for greed or hunger, a brotherhood of man/ Imagine all the people sharing all the world.” Chorus. “You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one/ And some day I hope you’ll join us/ And the world will be as one” (“Imagine,” John Lennon).
In an interview that appeared in the London Times, Yoko Ono said, “The whole universe was made by words. In the beginning there was a word--not ‘God’ but ‘love’” (“Leave the McCartneys Alone,” Times, June 27, 2006, “Arts,” p. 18). Thus Ono is desperately holding on to the atheism she shared with Lennon.
The 2004 YouGov survey of people in Britain found that only 44% believe in God, 33% in heaven, and 25% in hell. Thus a whopping 75% have bought into Lennon’s dream. Prior to the Beatles, 80% believed in God.
As for me, Lennon can have his dream. I believe there is a holy, loving God and there is a heaven and there is a hell and there is sin that separates man from God and there is a lovely Saviour who died for my sins so I don’t have to go there.
After Lennon was murdered, a memorial to him was set up in Central Park across from his apartment. Inscribed in the heart of the memorial is the word “Imagine.” When a crowd gathers every year to observe the anniversary of Lennon’s death, they sing this anti-christ song.
George Harrison’s Death
George Harrison died of throat cancer on November 29, 2001, at age 58, surrounded by old friends from the Hare Krishna movement. Ravi Shankar, the famous Indian musician who trained Harrison on the sitar in 1966, was with Harrison the day before he died and said Harrison “looked so peaceful” (“Harrison’s ashes to be spread in India,” Fox News, Dec. 3, 2001). Guada Chandra Das of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness told AFP that Harrison died to the sound of “chanting and praying” (“Harrison had a passion for the East,” AFP, Dec. 2, 2001).
After his body was cremated, his widow and 23-year-old son carried the ashes to India and sprinkled them in the Ganges River in Varnasi. They were accompanied by two Hare Krishna devotees who performed Hindu rites on the ashes. His widow asked fans to give a minute of meditation as a tribute to the musician at the hour of the scattering, which was 3 a.m. on Tuesday, December 4.
Harrison’s longtime friend Gavin De Becker said that the former Beatle “died with one thought in mind -- love God and love one another” (Associated Press, Nov. 30, 2001). Sadly, though, the love that the Beatles sang about is not the true love of God in Jesus Christ which offers eternal salvation for sinful men. The god that Harrison worshipped and promoted is the Hindi/New Age god of self. In an interview he said:
“The Lord, or God, has got a million names, whatever you want to call him; it doesn’t matter as long as you call him. . . . Every one of us has within us a drop of that ocean, and we have the same qualities as God, just like a drop of that ocean has the same qualities as the whole ocean. Everybody’s looking for something, and we are it” (“George Harrison’s Credo,” The Himalayan Times, Kathmandu Nepal, Dec. 17, 2001).
Harrison also said in a 1982 interview with the Hare Krishna organization: “The word ‘Hare’ calls upon the energy of the Lord. If you chant the mantra enough, you build up identification with God. God’s all happiness, all bliss, and by chanting his names, we connect with him. So it’s really a process of actually having God realization, which becomes clear with the expanded state of consciousness that develops when you chant. ... The best thing you can give is God consciousness. Manifest your own divinity first. The truth is there. It’s right within us all. Understand what you are” (George Harrison, “Hare Krishna Mantra, There’s Nothing Higher,” 1982).
As of April 2009, the Beatles were still promoting Hinduism. The two surviving Beatles headlined a benefit concert to promote Transcendental Meditation (TM) among children. The concert benefited the David Lynch Foundation, which is dedicated to “consciousness-based education and world peace.” The objective is to raise funds to teach one million children to meditate. Joining Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney were Sheryl Crow, Donovan, Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam, and others. As we have seen, TM is a Hindu practice and is based on the concept that the universe is God and man can tap into God through mysticism. One page of the David Lynch Foundation’s web site has a girl saying, “It is quiet and comfortable and I feel connected to everything and everyone.”
The Beatles generation, while rejecting the grosser rituals of Hinduism, has adopted its core philosophy, which is self choosing its own way and being its own god. In Hinduism, God is like a smorgasbord, and the individual picks and chooses his favorites from among the myriads of gods, all the while also believing that he is god, too. George Harrison spoke frequently about Jesus, but he did not mean the Jesus of the Bible but rather the “other christ” of Hinduism.
When John Lennon blurted out in 1966 that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus, he might have been right. The Beatles have had a vast influence upon the hearts and minds, not only of the unsaved, but also of professing Christians, and have helped to create a corrupt form of Christianity that merges paganism with Christ, a Christianity that believes it is wrong to judge sin or to live by strict biblical standards or to say that there is only one way of truth.
The average Christian today thinks nothing whatsoever of going to church on Sunday and then watching R-rated movies and listening to R-rated music the rest of the week; and he knows far more about Harry Potter and rock stars and sports idols and raunchy television sitcoms than he does about the Bible. Indeed, 2 Timothy chapter 3 is upon us.
This, truly, is a Beatles’ generation.
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).