Today I learned a friend of mine apparently chose to end life abruptly. Even though this person was known to wrestle with many dark and difficult personal issues, it was a surprise nonetheless.
For all my metaphysical and spiritual desires and teachings and lessons, I have yet to sort out how I feel about suicide (as if I have to…). I have never had the desire.
Over the years I have heard opinions. Many religions consider it a sin but I have thoroughly rejected the idea that “we are bad because we have sinned and need to be punished.” Some religions believe we are not permitted to reject the life God has given us, but I do not believe in such a jealous and petty God. When you return to the original languages of the Holy Bible, the word sin just translates as “to miss the point, to make an error in judgment,” and that is what I see sin as.
I knew a man who thought suicides were courageous people, brave enough to give a big F.U. to life. The notion startled me, but I would say, based on the public domain suicide notes I have read, they don’t sound like brave or courageous people. They all seem to be in some kind of pain, physically, emotionally and/or mentally, and are unable and/or unwilling to carry on anymore.
For a long time I used to get very angry at people who took their own life. I thought of them as quitters and cowards, which is just the opposite of what the person in the previous paragraph thought. My opinion wasn’t any better than his. Perhaps I felt resentment that they got to quit? Or perhaps I empathized with those left behind still alive. I have come to realize how cold an opinion I was holding. People still alive will always champion the idea of living, but you need to be careful not to label death as a failure.
I am also a firm believer that we create our own reality, but I still struggle with accepting other people’s creations.
And some of us commit suicide in very slow motion. Individually many of us overeat, smoke cigarettes, drink too much, etc. And even at times, as a society, instead of cooperating we work at cross-purposes with no compromise. We often think destroying our enemies, or banning the views of people we disagree with, is a proper solution, but all that does is suppress and limit choices.
A philosopher I admire once said that fanatics become fanatics when they close door after door of opportunity, until there is only one available and approved course of action, so when a crisis arises, they have only one choice. And, in a way, I would imagine suicides feel the same way, closing doors until finally deciding ending life is the only possible solution.
I still don’t understand suicide, but whatever you do, keep your doors open.