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The Man Who Sold The World

  • October 15, 2013

I absolutely love classic rock, especially the song, The Man Who Sold The World by David Bowie.  Like many songs, the lyrics are typically up to audience interpretation.  Having listened to this song many times, specifically the cover performed by the late Kurt Cobain of Nirvana, I decided to do some research of my own.

For a long time, many people have confused the meaning of the song with Aleister Crowley (1875-1947), an English occultist, ceremonial magician, poet, and mountaineer, who was responsible for founding the religion of Thelema.

Aleister-CrowleyHowever, the reference to Aleister Crowley in the song The Man Who Sold The World is false.  Instead, the reference belongs to the song Quicksand by David Bowie.  In fact, much of David Bowie’s music at the time was influenced by religious beliefs such as Buddhism, Occultism, and Friedrich Nietzsche’s concept of the Overman.

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