Bono on Religion and Christianity

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Unknown source, August 1993


Interview With Bono

Some of U2's Christian fans may have sensed the absence of the Lord on Achtung Baby, despite the presence of the song "Until the End of the World," which Bono once described as "a conversation between Jesus and Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane." ("I kissed your lips and broke your heart...") Likewise in relation to ZOO TV, which probably presented a new set of questions from U2 rather than prescribing God as the answer.

"We deliberately kept the record for the most erotic form of love so as to almost exhaust it as a possibility, and I think that makes it a kind of prayer, in a strange sort of way," says Bono, pausing and choosing his words carefully. "Edge's guitar solo in 'Love is Blindness' is a more eloquent prayer than anything I could write.

"You go through phases in your attempt to work out what it is you believe. And there was a period back in the early '80s where we lived a much more ascetic life and got a great grounding in the fundamentals of what Christianity could be. It wasn't the kind of Christianity that I loosely grew up around. It wasn't particularly Catholic or Protestant, it was more the cutting edge of Christiantiy. And I'm really glad I have that base.

"At the time we probably were extreme, because you are extreme in that honeymoon period. And you're always extreme when you're defensive. So I suppose we did build a wall around us and jsut got on with what we saw as our faith. But I do remember [manager Paul] McGuinness saying to me, even back then, 'Look, I'm not sure I share your faith but I know it's the most important question to you. And that an artist, a writer, is going to have to address that in whatever way you see fit. And if you want to do so you'll get a lot of stick, but go for it.' And we did so. And we did get a lot of stick."

Surely Bono himself, when he sees news reports about atrocities in Bosnia, for example, must have doubts about the existence of God.

"I'm sure of one thing," he replies. "Like we say on Zooropa, 'There's nothing certain/ That's for certain. But if I was certain of anything, I'm certain that you can't pin our actions, the actions of man in places like Bosnia, on God. THAT is our final arrogance, that we balme God for our own state. Most people think we got kicked out of the Garden of Eden. I'm not so sure. I think we kicked God out of it. And what I don't see is evidence of God in man. There is enough food, for example, but we just won't share it. We always see this planet as belonging to God--I think it belongs to us. We probably stole it from God. But you can try and give bits of it back in any way you can."

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on August 1, 1993 10:11 PM.

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Bono Inducts Bob Marley into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is the next entry in this blog.

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