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The History of society’s rejection of the act of ending it?

Waves

Well-Known Member
#1
Interested from a purely intellectual perspective how society came to condemn ending one’s existence. Sociological writings report that slave owners kept slaves from ending it because they needed the labor. And it evolved to a religious and cultural sin, for lack of a better word, since then. That being said, then there is not a spiritual reason against it necessarily but an economical reason.
 

Juella

Well-Known Member
#2
A lot of things we do today because ancient text insists that the God said so, are actually done because at least at the time when those ancient texts were written there was a practical or economical reason for behaving a certain way. The common folk just had an easier time digesting the concept of "God will be cross with you and will punish you if you do this", than understanding some far reaching risks certain behaviours might pose to society. The ban of suicide is no exception, I believe.
 

Optimistic Goatman

The woolly enigmatic one
Staff Alumni
SF Supporter
#3
I suspect people tend to have an issue with the idea of someone taking their own life more because it's a decision which causes a great deal of harm to the people in that person's life who care about them. However much a person may understand the realities behind why suicide happens, it doesn't stop it being an incredibly damaging thing to do. And most people's conception of god is a being that abhors actions which hurt other people, so it's only natural suicide would end up being seen as a sin. So i quite strongly disagree, i think there is an entirely reasonable spiritual reason for people to have an issue with suicide as a concept.
 

Juella

Well-Known Member
#5
Was the concept of God generated by man?
Now that's one loaded question!

Some believe it was, some believe it wasn't, I am not sure. But the concept of organized religion was definitely generated by man. We do not have any information that 100% came directly from God, the religious texts that say we shouldn't kill ourselves were written by humans.
 

Waves

Well-Known Member
#6
Thank you. If have no one that cares about you including no family and no friends then suicide hurts no one. That being said then from an intellectual perspective suicide is not wrong?
 

justrob

Keep on keeping on.
#7
Interested from a purely intellectual perspective how society came to condemn ending one’s existence.
When we existed in tribes it was vital for the tribe to continually replace members and very beneficial to increase numbers. This protected the tribe or in other worlds society. The survival of a small societies depended on the survival of individuals and vice versa. It was essential to the survival of the human race to increase numbers, and part of doing that is limit the lose of individuals that are being lost. Everyone was needed to collect food, build shelter, make babies and protect the small societies.

If have no one that cares about you including no family and no friends then suicide hurts no one. That being said then from an intellectual perspective suicide is not wrong?
First off, it is difficult for a person to be on SF and honestly say no one cares about them. Look at the response and effort that SF members put into helping everyone remain safe.

I will try to restrict my answer to purely intellectual arguments, but please forgive me if I stray a bit. First you assume that there is a suicide that hurts no one. Just because a person feels that no one cares about them does not make it true. I know the mind is powerful and under the influence of depression the mind can create it's own reality and a person just knows with absolute knowing that no one cares, but that is knowing from within the reality the mind created. There are people who become counselors and even join SF because they want to help ease the suffering of others. They may not know you when entering that pursuit, but they still do it because they care about you as a human being even though you are a stranger. I just read an article about a man who lives near a bridge and has talked to people that came to commit suicide and he talks them out of it. He cared about those he did not know. If someone is injured, whether by accident or not, we as humans rush to provide aid. Societies create crisis phone lines not to codemn a person, but to preserve that person's life.

Let's assume though that there is such a person who is alone, no family, no friends, no place like SF to go to and they do commit suicide. Someone is going to have to deal with that death. First responders see a lot of abuse and tragedy. That person's suicide adds to the weight on the first responder's psyche. Many first responders can not discuss with their loved ones what they see during the day because they don't want to expose their loved ones to what they have been exposed too. They wall off a significant part of their live from their loved ones and suffer alone because of it. Besides the first responders, you have some case where the person dies in an ER, affecting those in the ER who could not save them. A person's suicide can have a significant effect on complete strangers. A person's suicide can not have 0 impact on society.

Another reason society objects to suicide is because it does not want to deal with it's own mortality.

Besides casting doubt on the idea that a persons death can not harm anyone else, there is a real possible the suicide attempt will fail. Yes some attempts are not well executed, but there are plenty of cases that a person made a very good attempt and should have died, but did not. I have read many cases like that and many have not made a full recovery, becoming physically or mentally impaired for life. Now society has to take care of that person.

Society has a vested interest in preserving the life of the individual and sometimes that is expressed as condemnation.
 

Waves

Well-Known Member
#8
Valid points. Thank you for keeping your reply intellectual. I neglected to define the word care. It is a vague word. In this context I mean will provide physical aid in addition to emotional and social aid. Unless you are family and friends people do not provide ongoing physical care. As indicated by nursing home businesses. That being said people today are stressed and cannot care for other people like that. I went to a friend for emotional support, not even physical support. She said point blank, “No, you are not family.” This was after she had gotten my help and was done with me, had no use for me. I did not know that I was being used and would be rejected. I believed we were good friends even family. So intellectually I have seen firsthand the lack of care in the world. I have bad experiences and am probably in the minority in that way. But it happens and does raise intellectual questions about suicide. After all we all die. Withering away in pain does not seem useful to society, in my opinion. As for first responders, they encounter death in every form and do suffer from PTSD. It is heartbreaking and I commend them for their service. Eliminating suicide will not stop the trauma for them. Not as long as there are atrocities and devastating events. I see that everyone here in SF is in pain and that suicide is a coping mechanism or a way out of misery or a drive or a rumination etc. I don’t see suicide as the problem because we really want to live in peace and health. It is the cause of our misery that is the problem. This has been so for centuries and will probably always will be. Thank you for your respect.
 

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