Like most creative people of our time, David Bowie suffered from a divine madness fueled by what he called “demonic hell beasts,” who he said himself, “I felt like I’d fallen into the bowels of the earth.”
Bowie’s obsession with the occult, Gnostic doctrines, the paranormal, Aleister Crowley, Nazi’s and cocaine was more than he could handle.
The endless days of cocaine binges seemed to take the Thin White Duke to the dimension where the demons had dwelled, and it scared the holy hell out of him.
Like many occultists who had gone before, he stared too long into the darkness to the point where he was deep in the abyss, which often left him in a state of paranoid madness where he used pentagrams to protect himself against the dark spiritual forces that had followed him.
It seems Bowie’s trips to this hellish existence had reached a tipping point when he purchased a home in the city of Lost Angeles, AKA Los Angeles, that happened to be just a few doors down from where the Manson murders had taken place.
In a book by his former wife, Angela Bowie, she tells the story about a new home the couple had just purchased where Bowie’s self-help strategies were not helping. Angela says she “witnessed and shared it all―the bisexual orgies; David; decline at the hands of satanic cults and cocaine; and the lives and loves of Mick, Elton, Marianne, Iggy, Rod and Lou to name a few.”
He had claimed to be tormented by evil spirits in which an exorcism at his home and more appropriately of the Bowie’s pool was to take place. Here is an excerpt from “Bowie’s biography Backstage Passes: Life on the Wild Side With Bowie;”
“There was a beautiful Art Deco house on six acres, an exquisite site property and a terrific value at just $300,000, but he took one look at a detail I hadn’t noticed, a hexagram painted on the floor of a circular room by the previous owner, Gypsy Rose Lee.
“A great deal of codling and reassurance got us through that crisis, and I went and found the Doheny Drive house. Built in the late fifties or early sixties, it was a white cube surrounding an indoor swimming pool. David like the place, but I thought it was too small to meet our needs for very long, and I wasn’t crazy about the pool. In my experience, indoor pools are always a problem.
“This one was no exception, albeit not in any of the usual ways. Its drawback was one I hadn’t encountered before and haven’t seen or heard of since: Satan lived in it. With his own eyes, David said, he’d seen HIM rising up out of the water one night.”
Feeling demonic forces moving in, David felt strongly that he needed an exorcism and asked that his new found friend white witch Walli Elmlark be called upon to lend her assistance to remove the evil from his surroundings.
“A Greek Orthodox Church, in LA would have done it for us (there was a priest available for such a service, the people had told me) but David wouldn’t have it. No strangers allowed, he said. So there we stood, with just Walli’s instructions and a few hundred dollars’ worth of books, talismans, and assorted items from Hollywood’s comprehensive selection of fine occult emporia.
“There he (David Bowie) was, then, primed and ready. The proper books and doodads were arranged on a big old-fashioned lectern. The incantation began, and although I had no idea what was being said or what language it was being said in, I couldn’t stop a weird cold feeling rising up in me as David droned on and on.
“There’s no easy or elegant way to say this, so I’ll just say it straight. At a certain point in the ritual, the pool began to bubble. It bubbled vigorously (perhaps “thrashed” is a better term) in a manner inconsistent with any explanation involving air filters or the like.”
The rock and roll couple watched in amazement. Angie says she tried to be flippant – “‘ Well, dear, aren’t you clever? It seems to be working. Something’s making a move, don’t you think?’ – but I couldn’t keep it up. It was very, very strange; even after my recent experiences I was having trouble accepting what my eyes were seeing.”
Angie insists that she would peak through the glass doors leading to the pool every so often and was dumb founded by what she saw. “On the bottom of the pool was a large shadow, or stain, which had not been there before the ritual began. It was in the shape of a beast of the underworld; it reminded me of those twisted, tormented gargoyles screaming silently from the spires of medieval cathedrals. It was ugly, shocking, malevolent; it frightened me.
“I backed away from it feeling very strange, went through the doorway, and told David what I’d seen, trying to be nonchalant but not doing very well. He turned white but eventually became revived enough to spend the rest of the night doing coke. He wouldn’t go near the pool, though.
“I still don’t know what to think about that night. It runs directly counter to my pragmatism and my everyday faith in the integrity of the “normal” world, and it confuses me greatly. What troubles me the most is that if you were to call that stain the mark of Satan, I don’t see how I could argue with you.”
“David, of course, insisted that we move from the house as quickly as possible, and we did that, but I’ve heard from reliable sources (Michael Lipman for one, the property’s real estate agent) that subsequent tenants haven’t been able to remove the shadow. Even though the pool has been painted over a number of times, the shadow has always come back.”