Message from Yoko Ono

Trust in the power of human intellect.

The 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were a tragedy of the greatest magnitude that must never be repeated. Even now, sixty-six years later, many victims of the violence of atomic weapons are still suffering. Such is the gravity of the destruction wrought by the A-bomb.

And now the tragedy of the atom is unfolding again, this time triggered by the forces of nature in the shape of the massive earthquake and tsunami of March 11.

Yet, I believe that thanks to the remarkable scientific advances of recent years, coupled with the efforts of many, including you, Japan will go on to achieve a full recovery and one day rise again.

And just as the citizens of Hiroshima and Nagasaki overcame the tragedy of the bombings, choosing instead to lead lives of strength and resilience, Japan possesses the intelligence and courage to build a new nation triumphing over an environmental problem unprecedented anywhere on the planet.

This recent tragedy involving atomic power is not just a problem for Japan, but for many nations around the world, particularly the more developed. Thus the time has come for we Japanese to trust in our own resilience to make a new beginning, and at the same time share that strength with the rest of the international community, as, I believe, is our duty.

The strength of the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which has enabled them to overcome profound sorrow and suffering thanks to an indomitable spirit and the power of the human mind, offers a ray of hope for the world today.

Humanity’s greatest wisdom lies in its psychic energy, our superpowers, if you like, a brilliant intellectual force that emerges from the depths of our consciousness at times of crisis, and has the power to move mountains purely by hope.

The time is coming for each of us, every member of the human race, to draw on those powers, the greatest strength of our intellect.

In a message from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, this is what we must urgently remind the youth of Japan, and all the people of the world, and exercise our mutual capabilities to greatest effect, joining forces to save the planet.

We Japanese, having twice been exposed to the horror of the atom in a way experienced nowhere else, must use the wisdom gained from this painful experience, allowing our spirits to soar even higher and guide the rest of mankind along the path of hope, for the sake of the people and flora and fauna of our planet.

Hoping that my love will help you draw on your own personal superpowers.

Yoko Ono
Summer 2011

The City of Hiroshima has selected Yoko Ono as the winner of the 8th Hiroshima Art Prize