Towards the end of 2009, I got a message from Doog. I hadn’t heard from him in a while, since we both had quit Everything, Now the year before. I was living with my wife, Lindsay, in Chicago. The last time I had seen Doog he was going kind of crazy under the spell of Luipa.
I had heard things here and there since our last meeting. I knew he had gone back to Omega and things hadn’t gone well. Mutual friends kept calling us and asking “What happened to Doog? The last time he was here, he was so peaceful and full of light. He’s changed.” I didn’t know what to say. What do you tell people when your best friend has been diagnosed as a manic depressive schizophrenic? How do you temper that information? How do you explain it to someone who doesn’t know what it means? I didn’t say much. I sent him as much light and love as I could from where I was in Chicago.
Doog sent me a message from Hawaii. I didn’t know Doog was in Hawaii and couldn’t imagine how or why he was there. He said he wasn’t doing well and asked if we could come stay at my place over Christmas. I told him that he was definitely welcome and I anticipated healing sessions and quiet meditations.
Then I got more messages from Doog. He started sending me crazy stuff saying that he raped someone, that he killed someone, with no explanation. Lindsay started getting freaked out and told me not to let him come stay with us. I couldn’t turn him away in his time of need so when Christmas came, I went to the airport to meet Doog with very little explanation of what was going on and what had really happened in Hawaii.
He stayed at my house for a week and told me the whole story. He had been working at Omega after the Everything, Now breakup. He quickly realized that his mind was unravelling and we was not able to fulfill his work duties at Omega. Since he couldn’t work, they asked him to leave and he took his remaining money and bought a ticket to Hawaii. He spent a couple of weeks hanging around and exploring the island. He said he was in paradise but he couldn’t enjoy it because on the inside, he was in Hell.
In an email, he told me this story:
- It’s like this– that thing that possessed me in Indianapolis was not Luipa. It was a lo vibrational entitity of some sort. Low vibrational entitites cannot see the light so everything they say to you is about your lower self. I thought it was my guru and believed everything it said, in the process my vibration has gone all the way to hell and I’m surrounded by demons who are constantly telling me that i am the worst thing imaginable. they try to get me to kill and rape people. so this is echoing through my mind, creating terrible karma, spiraling out of control.
- i’m sick and covered in injuries from this happening. he’s really trying to get me to kill people. If i go to the hospital it’s because I’m a danger to other people, not because i think it’s beneficial for me. because it’s the right thing to have myself confined. really, i’m fucking scared. i’m doing everything i can to battle for the light, but whenever i’m blessed by a light being the light is sucked from my soul like a vacuum cleaner. my heart is VOID.
- do you remember that murder that happened outside of your house on the last day of tour? they did that. it was a blood sacrifice. I need to battle for myself. A shaman can help. A couple of times I’ve broken away for a second, but the karma we’ve created catches up to me and I’m sucked back down. I’m in a lot of trouble. Be careful with the spirit stuff! It’s not worth it to be a medium, i don’t think. It’s better to just be happy with what you have and leave the mystery alone.
He said that he had seen his name erased from the book of life. He said this his guardian angel had left him and that an X had been placed on his hand. He said that he was damned and doomed. He said that demons were tormenting him all day everyday. He was experiencing physical pain. He was getting shown visions of rape and murder from the first person perspective of the rapist. He said he felt it and it was so real that he basically was the one that committed those acts. He didn’t actually do any of this. I’m guessing he was laying around on the ground for most of his Hawaii trip, in physical and mental pain.
Eventually, he stumbled into an Santo Daime Ayahuasca community. He started doing Ayahuasca rituals with the shamans there in hopes that they would be able to help and heal him. He said that he thought it was helping him at first but then he realized it was making it worse. He was still being tortured constantly by demons. He had lost his hope for his life. He had lost his hope for his salvation and his afterlife. He was doomed as far as he was concerned.
His mom bought him a ticket to fly to Chicago and he arrived at my house at the end of the year. He spent a week with us and we tried to nurse him back to health as much as we could. I did daily healings on him. I did shamanic journeys with him to work with his guides but nothing seemed to have a lasting effect. Eventually he left, feeling lost and hopeless.
Back in Bloomington, Indiana, he started doing research online about his condition and eventually decided that he needed to have an exorcism. He found a healer that would do an exorcism long distance, but it was expensive. We started a fundraiser for him to get an exorcism. He was able to raise hundreds of dollars that all got sent to my bank account. I sent the money to the healer and she started his treatment of exorcisms.
She initially told him that she couldn’t get him grounded. She told him that he needed to eat a lot of heavy grounding foods. After maybe ten years of vegetarianism, Doog started eating meat again. After a week, she told him that as soon as she got him grounded she was suddenly aware of all the demons and evil spirits that were torturing him. She worked with him via email for a few weeks and eventually he said that he was feeling better and less tortured.
Also at this time, he started taking anti-psychotic drugs from the doctors. I didn’t talk to him for a few months. Eventually, I went down to Bloomington to play a show and I hung out with him. It was the worst I had ever seen him. He had gained a lot of weight from the meat oriented diet and the life and light had gone out of his eyes. He said that he had no emotions anymore. Because of the drugs, he also had no inspiration and couldn’t write songs anymore. He said that the demons were still with him but he had the option to ignore them now.
He was still convinced that he was doomed and damned. He said that he no longer cared about anything. He said that he was witnessing the events of his life without a care one way or the other. He was a passive observer of the world as it unfolded around him. It was very uncomfortable to talk to him. He was like a zombie.
He stayed like this for what seemed like two years. He spent his days working himself to the bone at a grocery store and then drinking and smoking himself into oblivion at night. He was hurting and he didn’t know what else to do. I saw him a few times over the next couple of years and he was in the same zombie-like state. I hated seeing him that way. I hated not being about to help him but I also didn’t want to be in his unfeeling, alien presence. It was terrible. He would later go on to create an album about this period in his life called “An Impossible Darkness.” To this day, it is the darkest, saddest, and honestly raw album in his discography.
In October 2011, everything changed. Occupy Wallstreet was happening in New York and somehow that broke the spell that Doog was under. It gave him hope for the future and inspired him to become interested in the actions of his life again. I went to Bloomington in October to play a show and I saw him right before he left for New York. He was completely changed. He was excited and inspired and the spark had come back into his eyes. He had a reason to live. I was happy to see him right at this turning point.
He sold everything save survival gear and found a way to New York where he lived in a tent and made food for the Occupyers all winter. But that’s another story…