Yoko Ono offers peace message in Kyoto university lecture

“The world situation has gotten worse compared to when John and I staged ‘Bed-Ins’ [in 1969]…and I think now is the [darkness] before dawn,” said 75-year-old Ono, who was invited to give a short performance and lecture to mark the 40th anniversary of Kyoto Seika University in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto.

“It’s because I’ve lived so long that I began noticing about 10 years ago for the first time that what I did with John has finally begun to change the world little by little,” she said.

During a 90-minute lecture conducted as a question-and-answer session with the audience, Ono explained why the couple began calling for peace and talked about the many ups and downs she experienced after Lennon’s death.

Providing a penlight for each member of the audience, she also introduced her current project, Onochord, in which she encourages people to express “I love you” by blinking a flashlight in a set pattern.

She also encouraged art students at the university to believe in their own ability, even if they feel no one appreciates their work.