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TICKETS --5th Annual JOHN DENVER CELEBRATION-Oct 4-5, 2003 | ABOUT JOHN DENVER'S LIFE & A Message from John To All Of Us | HOW DOES JOHN'S LEGACY CONTINUE? The TRUE Fans vs. FALSE fans | MEMORIES From last year's 2002 John Denver Celebration | *SEE John Denver Mountain* | Weekend Magazine Cover-Celebration | Link-VISIT HAL THAU'S OFFICIAL JOHN DENVER WEBSITE | My Father's Page | Quotes/Ideas/Prayers On Living Well, Friendship and Gratitude | Human Spirituality Articles by Christine Smith | Protect Alaska | WHY I OPPOSE THE DEATH PENALTY (& what you can do) | Dreams of Freedom Charity -helping prison inmates & others | ICC - International Criminal Court | International Radio Interviews With Christine | THE JOHN DENVER BOOK-Ordering/endorsements/author message/excerpts | ABOUT CHRISTINE--My Bio & Interests | Christine's 2003 Music CD | The Outstanding American Award | CONTACT ME


It is my observation that many celebrities have both "true" and "false" fans...a phrase I have coined to distinguish between those who truly appreciate an individual for who they are--versus those who are merely infatuated with a celebrity whom they idolize often on a very juvenile level. 


"Works, and not words, are the proof of Love." (Spanish Proverb)
John's music is fundamental...and with it, continuing his legacy is up to each of you. You are the gift. He showed you the way, and now it is up to you to ensure his message--his light--shines brightly. He gave a beautiful gift to us... And so can you.
The word "fan" has for many of us developed a negative conotation due to the shallow behavior of those who simply gossip and chat using John Denver's name to make themselves feel 'special'...they proclaim they are fans and that they agree with his message of love--but their fruitless lives prove otherwise. On the contrary, their meaningless gossip, chit-chat, and mere social gatherings are but a means to make themselves feel good without being good. They gather together on the Internet and in person using his name--but his name for them is but an excuse to group together as a gang who do very little or nothing--but all of whom wish to appear as if they are accomplishing much. Their voices are loud in their self-proclaimed love of JD...but their evil hearts and tongues prove otherwise. Their use of JD's name is but a pretext to group together with others like themselves, who do not care to actually work to accomplish anything which would honor John and continue his legacy, but all of whom share the common desperation of seeking other's approval...when they get together with other's like themselves who do little if anything--while claiming to do good works in JD's name--they feel accepted and adequate. They stroke one another's egos. They are hypocrytes; for they are everything opposite of what JD stood for: love, courage, activism on behalf of the things you profess to believe...a devotion to truth. 
Those whose shallow behavior has given a negative feel to the words "John Denver fan" may be receiving some sort of cathartic emotional feeling from their use of his name, but what they do does not honor John...on the contrary, it harms his legacy. 

Thus, such shallow behavior has given a distaste to the word "fan," yet so MANY who DO love John and put into action the things they learned from him have no other word to use but the word "fan."  I have heard from so many fans who are embarassed by the behavior of shallow fans.

Thus, I now distinguish between TRUE FANS and FALSE FANS.

A TRUE FAN implements what they learned from John's songs, message and life into their own lives--they become a channel for love. A FALSE FAN merely prides themselves on how many concerts they've attended--what memorabilia they own--or how much they can drop his name into a conversation--but THEY MISS THE POINT because they have not chosen to love all--and loving all was the message of John Denver.
True fans listen to the lyrics and try to live the message contained therein...false fans merely quote lyrics. 
False fans want to be known as people continuing his legacy without extending the effort, courage and dedication continuing his legacy requires. They hear the words of his songs and know within it is the truth, but they haven't the heart conviction to truly live what he sings of...yet, they want the appearance as if they are fans of John Denver without being TRUE FANS.
It is good to gather with others who also appreciate John--it is always beautiful to join with others who share the same or similar values...and gathering together with others who care about John can be meaningful.  I've become aware of such gatherings worldwide (Australia, Germany, UK, New Zealand, etc.) and it is a good thing to see...True fans do such things...and more!  They know that it's up to them to continue his legacy in how they choose to live -- not mere lip service to the man.  They enjoy one another's company, but they don't limit what they do to something once a year--and they don't just talk about him during the year--they live it by dedicating their lives to truth.  John was a man of integrity, and true fans are individuals of integrity--and it shows year-round. 
"Do more than hear, listen. Do more than listen, understand."
John H. Rhoades

So, how does his legacy continue...?
First and foremost, John is with us through his music--the expressions of his heart so passionately articulated in song. It is through his music he reached us--then those who understood took the message of his songs to heart--and chose, also, to make a conscious choice to love, thereby making a difference for good in this world.

I urge all who truly appreciate John to not only listen to his songs for the inspiration and encouragement it brings you, but to also share his music with those who may be receptive. So many have shared stories with me of how difficult situations in the lives of those they cared about, opened up a space for them to share John's music with someone...and blessings and miracles followed as someone in emotional/physical or spiritual need found hope and solace in John's messages.

There is power in John's music--it is far more than just pretty songs--for he was more than an entertainer. He was a messenger of truth--and through his songs--that power will continue to be communicated.

Intertwined with his music is the necessity that those of you who got the point--the TRUE FANS who understood the message--you must go out into the world and take action for the things you believe. John's music was an expression of the convictions he passionately devoted his life to--a tool to communicate the things he believed--a way of letting each of us know the tremendous gift each of us can be to this world--if we consciously choose to make a difference by bringing love to the situations we encounter.

His legacy is not any "important" person; his legacy is not any "special" organization; his legacy is not any "special" place; his legacy is not the false fans.


"In the arena of human life, the honours and rewards fall to those who show their good qualities in action."
Aristotle (Nicomachean Ethics, 4th century B.C

"Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare."
Japanese proverb

"Talk is cheap. It's the way we organize and use our lives
every day that tells what we believe
-- Cesar E. Chavez

Again, as Chavez, is cheap. FALSE FANS talk all the time--TRUE FANS LIVE LIVES ENDEAVORING TO LIVE THE LOVE JOHN SANG OF. True fans walk their talk as John did.  False fans have a mere social club; true fans do what they can to make the world a better place.
I have been asked by those who truly appreciate and love John, just how did so many false fans develop around a man devoted to peace and could so many have missed the point?  In my opinion, based on my observation and experience, I would estimate that approximately 25% of those calling themselves JD fans are TRUE FANS ...the other 75% are FALSE FANS who missed the point. 
I think this is a common phenomena around any celebrity...and the false fans of JD are mostly those who were captivated by a celebrity (JD)who was popular when they were teens or young adults.  They needed an idol--and some of them chose JD--because he was popular and "cute,"-- someone they could like the music of...then as they aged...they simply continued to say they were fans of JD...yet they never cared to grow mentally, spiritually and emotionally.  But John grew...and he expressed an important message to those with hearts who truly listened.  But shallow fans missed it...they simply continue to this day to cling to his name based on their shallow values.  Because of their emotional weaknesses they remain at the shallow level of needing an idol so they cling to JD's makes them feel good to call themselves John Denver fans and to gather with others who are at the same juvenile level as themselves--BUT THEY ARE NOT THE TRUE FANS...for all true fans appreciate John on a deeper level...true fans endeavor to understand what John was communicating and they then try to live it.  They care about what John stood for, and they want to live their lives expressing love, peace, empathy...they seek truth...they are sincere...They get the point John was here to teach us--that each of us can make a tremendous difference if we make the choice to do so.  True fans understand it's about how you live each day--it's not about what you do once a year; or what you own; or how many times you saw JD or silly insignificant stories about him; it's none of these things--It's about living what you learned. 

TRUE FANS open their hearts and listen to the guidance given them on how they, too, can be a blessing to humanity and Earth. They take to heart John's words...they know continuing John's legacy is far more than throwing around his name frequently and doing one or two seemingly altruistic actions once a year...NO, TRUE FANS CARRY HIS MESSAGE WITH THEM DAILY AND IT INFLUENCES HOW THEY LIVE THEIR LIVES. TRUE FANS CONTINUE HIS LEGACY DAILY...In the love they bring their family, friends, strangers...In the love that guides their decisions politically and socially...In the love which gives them the strength, the courage to get involved and make a difference when an opportunity is presented to the love that makes truth their highest priority in relating to their fellow's the love John sang of and lived. 

I have received thousands of letters and emails from those grieving John's death, feeling at a loss as to what to do. If you are one of those who feel as I do, that there is a power in his music and message, then it is up to you to share that with others.

You can certainly do this by sharing his music with all. I bring his music into prisons, juvenile centers, detention work camps, nursing homes, orphanages, etc...You can, too. Do this yourself right where you are...or contact me to see if the charity Dreams of Freedom can give his music to the places in your area. You are certainly welcome to join all of us at Dreams of Freedom...we need volunteers nationwide.

I think the greatest way we honor John is by living our lives in love for all--all humanity--all of Earth. Love cannot be divided. "Love is the answer," as John sang so beautifully in Wandering Soul.

What does it mean to live the love he so eloquently expressed? It means excluding none from that love. Love is unconditional. It is due all.

Many people often asked John how could they make a difference. It's easy...endeavor to live each moment of your life exuding love. Yes, you will make mistakes...but mistakes are merely for correction.

It begins each day. Toward your family, your friends and acquaintances, toward strangers. Maybe it is as simple as being friendly and understanding toward the clerk checking you out...or overlooking the apparent negative attitude of a fatigued child or partner...Maybe you are meant to be there for those in need right in your community. Love is not waiting for a once-a-year holiday to give to those in need...Love is saying I am can I help?

Love is seeing all as one. One family, one Earth. Love is realizing that our differences are minimal--that which we share is immense. As John sang, "Yet, as different as we are, we're still the same." (Spring).

Open your heart...listen to the still small voice will lead the way. Begin with realizing the divine is within you, you are a gift. It doesn't matter where you are--what you have or don't have--where you've been or what you've done--What matters is the choice you make love.

There are unique expressions of love only you can give others. Never doubt what you can accomplish. Never doubt that your work is without accomplishment. From a sincere smile to a stranger to a helping hand to an elderly a listening ear to someone in giving your time and support to environmental or social justice causes...speaking out on controversial issues...All of these things make a difference.

If we are to create heaven on Earth, it requires the willingness of each of us...Choose now to be "part of the movement, part of the growing..." (John Denver in Calypso.)

I urge each of you who truly appreciate John to let your life speak for the things you learned from him. BE A TRUE FAN-- be someone who got the point...and let your life elucidate the lessons you learned from his music and example.

It is truly about you and me together...and, yes, it's about time.


John's legacy will continue through YOU.

Many have expressed to me their desire that John's legacy will forever endure. I believe it will, but not because of those who seem most vocal and flagrant in expressing their so-called devotion to him. No. It will continue through those of you who truly understood his music and message. You are rare. There are so many I have met who say the right words and proclaim his name frequently and loudly...but their hearts are filled with darkness. Although I have come to see that the most vocal 'fans' have missed the point entirely and do not understand his significance...I have also come to see that it is the beautiful individuals, quiet, unassuming, and dedicated, such as you, who are the ones who truly continue his legacy. I am blessed to be able to meet you...THE AUTHENTIC ONES.

During the past three years I have had the beautiful experience of meeting many worldwide who appreciate John deeply. I have also had the sad experience of meeting many using his name to glorify their own egos. They proclaim his name and boast of the things they say they do in his memory--but they are not authentic. Their hearts are dark, and through time and painful personal experience with so many of them I can now sort the true from the false. It is the false fans who miss the point..."false fans" defined as those obsessed with a celebrity for the reflected glory it brings them...they talk endlessly about him and quote his lyrics, but their lives are fruitless; their behavior proves they have not taken his words to heart. False fans are immature people trying desperately to cling to something greater than themselves to feel a sense of worth. I have seen countless examples of their superficial appreciation, shallowness and deceit. They miss the point.

Those who TRULY appreciate John learned from him. They endeavor to implement the spiritual lessons communicated in his music and life's example. They realize they, too, can make a difference right where they are by dedicating themselves to the light. They do not seek recognition, though they may receive it. They do not think of themselves as better than anyone else, though they may accomplish much. They open their heart and mind to truth. They seek to love all. They are the TRUE FANS.

I urge each of you to become more than a false fan. Let your life speak for your understanding; for it proclaims your sincere appreciation of John's message.

Each year this celebration is growing because of you--THE AUTHENTIC ONES. It is becoming better every year--PROVIDING A PLACE FOR THOSE WHO TRULY APPRECIATE HIS MUSIC TO GATHER TOGETHER AS A FAMILY OF FRIENDS.

Thank you for being part of this. I pray each of you will endeavor to live your life exemplifying the love John sang of for all humanity and Earth...FOR IT IS THROUGH YOU HIS LEGACY ENDURES.
Copyright 2001, 2002, (C) Christine Smith.  All rights reserved.