In a new interview with Shambhala Sunspace, Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan discussed his spirituality. Here is an excerpt:
A Rolling Stone article about the life and death of the Beastie Boys’ Adam Yauch made a fleeting reference to the presence of Buddhist monks at the Tibetan Freedom Concerts (organized by Yauch, and played by the Smashing Pumpkins and others) having an impact on you, pulling you from the brink of suicidal depression. What was it about them?
“There was one monk, sort of the head guy. He and I started having these daily conversations. He would call me aside and say, with a very happy, smiley face, “Why do you look so miserable?” I would complain about whatever was on my mind—the crowds, the band, the hazards of success—and he would laugh and say, “You know, it doesn’t have to be this way.” He never preached or tried to convert me to Buddhism or anything like that. He was, like a good teacher would, creating some curiosity.
Being raised a Catholic, I grew up with Jesus, but I recognized that there was more than one teacher. That monk lit the path for me; suddenly Jesus made more sense, and Eastern modality made more sense. It all started with those daily talks about just trying to be a little more conscious in my life and how I was creating my own misery.”