The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has taken a harsh toll on the mental health of many worldwide. Oli Sykes, frontman of Bring Me the Horizon, has revealed that he, too sunk into depression, as a result of the lockdown, and spent a month living with monks as “spiritual rehab” after being in a “very dark place”.
“For a while I just went into a very dark place, a place that I’ve been in before, but it was the start of a beautiful thing finding myself again,” Sykes revealed in an interview with The Sun.
“I think everyone experienced some level of this during lockdown. Even the most positive of people can’t hide from the fact that these are very dark times.
“It was depression for me, for sure, but that worst kind of depression where it’s not like you’re feeling sad but where you’re feeling nothing at all. You’re really just out of touch with your own emotions.”
Sykes shared that he and his wife, Alissa Salls, headed to a monastery to help him battle his depression and restore his happiness.
“A couple of hours from where Alissa’s family lives there’s actually an ashram, a Hare Krishna ashram, and they invited us to go and stay there.
“So for the best part of a month we went and lived on an ashram, without all our devices and disconnected and basically lived as if we were Hare Krishna for a month.
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“We woke up at five in the morning and prayed to Krishna and sang and danced, to just connect with who we are.
“And these people are just the happiest people in the world, these monks, you go and meet them and they’re the most positive and spiritual people, and I just thought, I want a piece of that. I want to see what it’s like.”
Sykes did a stint in rehab in 2014 for a ketamine addiction, and the singer compares it to his recent experience at the monastery.
“It was like a rehab to be honest. I went to rehab a few years ago for drugs. But when I came here it was a detox, but from everything … emotional issues, dependency on devices, dependency on being a musician.
“I just learned how to be still and wake up and think I’ve got nothing to do today and that’s absolutely fine.”
Oli Sykes latest revelation about his depression isn’t the first time the band has touched on the grueling affects of the pandemic. In July last year, Bring Me the Horizon released an EP called ‘Parasite Eve, they began working on it before the pandemic, but found that the affect of the crisis “seeped” into the song.
“ There was this stressful feeling of not knowing whether you’d catch it, there was a lack of trust for a while, everyone was like “what the fuck is going on?” I guess that seeped into the song a bit,” keyboardist Jordan Fish revealed of the track.