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A few years back, rocker Marilyn Manson gained infamy for ripping up Bibles on stage.
Now he says he plans to read the Bible from the stage.
A community group called Citizens for Peace and Respect has called for Manson to skip the June 21st Denver stop of the heavy-metal tour Ozzfest.
During my visit to his Hollywood Hills home in 1997, Manson posed next to a gruesome crucifix for part of a filmed interview.
Later, seated on his terrace with the grid of lights that is Los Angeles twinkling in the background, he did seem seductively satanic, tempting viewers with all the kingdoms of this world--or, at least, all the potential delights of L. "Maybe I should become a Christian and make them all happy," he said.
So that was the point where I started to seek out other interpretations of God. But when people rail against me for what I do, I absolutely can understand why they would. My art is not limited to the songs I create but also to the reaction it creates.
And initially, when you rebel, you go for the obvious choices--heavy metal, Satanism. Lucifer was the angel that was kicked out of heaven because he wanted to be God. So initially I was drawn into the darker side of life. I started to learn that everything that’s considered a sin is what makes you a human being. I like to sit back and look at the whole thing as if it's a tornado that I'm controlling. When you create chaos, ideas are turned upside down, and everybody looks at things in a different way. No, I got into it to say what was on my mind, and I'm fortunate enough that people are listening.
But whenever I spent the weekend with my friend, I would have to go to these Friday night services that began at midnight. It was odd because you were starting to fall asleep--it’s the perfect time to brainwash people. Of course, you have to control them, but if you’re made to feel guilty for being human, then you’re going to be trapped in a never-ending sin-and-repent cycle that you can’t escape from. I think that could only be true if I considered myself to be the devil, because I tend to be narcissistic and believe in my own strength and my own identity. When did you begin to encounter resistance because of your beliefs?
People were tossing money onto the stage and speaking in tongues. It may have been what inspired me to become a rock musician! Well, resistance always will be the first thing to fuel the fire when you're young. They would have these seminars in Christian school saying, "This is what you're not supposed to listen to." So I immediately went out and bought it.
"But I think if I found Jesus--which, I didn't know he was lost in the first place--I don't think he would be all that different from me." Manson spoke to me recently about the current state of his soul from his home in the city of the (fallen) angels, Los Angeles. My first memories of religion were being taken to Episcopal church.
My father was Catholic, but my mother, I believe, was Episcopal.
So I sort of veered off into the watered-down version of Catholicism.
At the same time I was going to a nondenominational Christian school, where I was taught a very underhanded form of Christianity.
For example, my Bible teacher would ask the class, "Is there anyone in the room that’s Catholic? " If there was no response, she would talk about how wrong those other religions interpreted the Bible.