Remembering John Lennon and the Message from His Song, “Crippled Inside”
December 8, 2013
December 8th, 2013 is the 33rd anniversary of the passing of John Lennon, a man who was arguably one of the most important, creative, musical influences of the Baby Boomer generation. Tragically murdered in a senseless act of insanity, John Lennon left the world a legacy of music that was entertaining and lyrically full of wisdom. I am thinking specifically of the song “Crippled Inside” on the Imagine album, released in 1971. As Lennon wrote, “One thing you can’t hide, is when you’re crippled inside.”
When it comes to hiding from a life of child abuse and domestic violence, according to the recently released ACE Study from the National Institute of Health, Lennon could not have been more accurate. The ACE Study surveyed 15,287 recipients of government-sponsored healthcare, and found that there is a very high correlation between Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and adult onset autoimmune disease. In fact, the study cites statistics indicating that among individuals responding to the survey who are 40-years of age or older and who have 3 or more ACE’s, the incidence of autoimmune disease is 100%! I’d say that’s a pretty high correlation. (If you are interested in scientific data on this subject, look up “The Bomb in the Brain-The True Roots of Human Violence”, a YouTube video about this subject.)
As much as any given person might want to, this study says that no-one can bury their history. It’s not possible. According to the authors of the study, if not dealt with, biography becomes biology. Adverse Childhood Experiences can be pushed into the subconscious; but out of sight is not out of mind. In fact, the emotional content of an ACE will fester like an infection and manifest as disease, sooner or later.
I can attest to the problems one faces when dealing with ACEs. After growing up in an environment of child abuse and domestic violence while having to bear the added burden of covering it all up because we were a famous family, I suffered from the effects that are well-documented. My life was a mess. I was depressed, sick, angry, withdrawn and I made poor lifestyle decisions. But through counseling, practicing Transcendental Meditation, facing my fears and coming out of hiding and facing the truth of my childhood, I am making it. The message is clear; deal with the pain of domestic violence and child abuse in your past, or it will deal with you.
Poet, Ezra Pound once said, “The artist is the antenna of the race.” It has taken society a long time to catch up to John Lennon, but even science is now confirming what he knew back in 1971.
You can live a lie until you die
One thing you can’t hide
Is when you’re crippled inside.