Question with 3 notes
deadheartdeadworld-deactivated2 asked: Hello again,
So I have another question for you. In my world religion class we are studying Jainism and my prof started by talking about how committing suicide by fasting is considered a honorable thing in the India by Jainism followers (I apologies I am not aware of a term to refer to them) and people of other faiths. Now my question is what are your opinion on killing yourself in the name of a religion? See I personally think that they have every right to kill themselves as long as they do not harm others. I cant complain with one less religious nut on this earth.
You come up with some good questions, ones that my answer may be a bit unpopular but good ones none the less. Thank you for asking. The only reason I know anything about Jainism at all is because I used to work with a few Indian-American immigrants that were Jains. I don’t know a lot about it but one of their core beliefs is non-violence and using the power of one’s own mind. They believe that Jainism has always existed in some way, and although many people in America may of never even heard of it there are over 4 million Indians that claim it as their religion.
The sanctioned act of suicide especially in Jainism is a bit strange. It is only recommended for people that know they are reaching the end of the life and who are “spiritually” fit to commit to such a thing. They allow themselves to starve to death and believe through this passive action it helps to rid them of negative karma and is looked upon as an honorable death. It is not looked at by the Jain as an act of suicide since suicide involves passion and strong emotion where this is much more passive. It has to be an extremely long and excruciatingly painful way to commit suicide, and I don’t see how someone would be able to maintain enough mental faculty to complete it without going insane first.
Almost all religions make an effort to say that no one should ever purposely kill themselves. The Qu’ran has passages condemning it, the bible as well, and most all other religious faiths make some effort to discourage taking your own life. Yet still people find ways to justify it to themselves as for their religion and acceptable for the good of their cause. The promise of their 72 virgins or crystal raisins, those old text are so hard to translate accurately sometimes. It is something I find completely unconscionable, and can never see someone committing suicide because of a religion as a good thing. There is no such thing as an honorable suicide, and it is absolutely vile when someone kills others at the same time. Even if they were not the best of people well they were alive I could never support the deliberate act of suicide. I value life too much and would never want to wish death upon anyone. If they were a truly evil individual a lifetime of prison is a far more suiting punishment in my view.
Suicide is always a touchy subject for people, as someone who has personally both contemplated it at times and dealt with the impact of others doing it, I view it as more often then not a selfish act. There are very few if any instances where I could ever consider suicide as an acceptable option for someone. Which makes the right to kill yourself a bit of a weird topic, you can’t force someone who doesn’t want to live to live, but I’d hardly consider suicide a right. We’ll all die eventually, it’s just speeding up the process. For those that consider euthanasia a form of suicide, I think there are times that it is acceptable. If it’s for something outside of prolonged physical suffering with little to no hope of recovery then it shouldn’t be done. All people have felt low points in their life where the despair seemed inescapable. I also think that with very few exceptions most people have had at least passing thoughts of suicide at one time, but that still doesn’t mean it should be acceptable. I don’t look to disrespect the dead by calling them selfish for their actions, but the grief and despair felt by others after they’re gone should make a good case for it. Choosing your own time of death is not honorable, it’s a foolish waste of life.