Morality of Suicide

What would you do if?

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Andre_5772
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Morality of Suicide

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Post by Andre_5772 »

For quite some time, I have been of the opinion that suicide is always immoral. This intuition arises out of my awe at how complicated and delicate the human body is, yet how elegantly all these systems work together, for the most part.

However I read something the other day which was to the effect of, "Life is for learning and growing, not for suffering through." I have to admit that this makes a lot of sense to me, too. But this leads to the possibility that at times suicide is justified. Specifically, when one can reasonably expect an excess of suffering in the future, and this condition will prevent any significant growth as a person, contribution to society, or whatever that person finds meaningful.

When I thought about this further, I realized that I probably wouldn't begrudge someone who committed suicide, provided they had rationally come to the conclusion that these criteria were satisfied. While I would never advise suicide, I think my view has changed to the point where I can accept it in certain circumstances without condemning it. I'm wondering what others think about the morality of suicide. Is it on par with murder because it ends a human life? Or is it a different act because rational beings are free to choose death for themselves although not for others?

nyan-eleven
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Post #81

Post by nyan-eleven »

Suicide is immoral; not only is it murder, it means that they might miss Facejacker on Tuesday evenings!

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Sonofason
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Re: Morality of Suicide

Post #82

Post by Sonofason »

Andre_5772 wrote: For quite some time, I have been of the opinion that suicide is always immoral. This intuition arises out of my awe at how complicated and delicate the human body is, yet how elegantly all these systems work together, for the most part.

However I read something the other day which was to the effect of, "Life is for learning and growing, not for suffering through." I have to admit that this makes a lot of sense to me, too. But this leads to the possibility that at times suicide is justified. Specifically, when one can reasonably expect an excess of suffering in the future, and this condition will prevent any significant growth as a person, contribution to society, or whatever that person finds meaningful.

When I thought about this further, I realized that I probably wouldn't begrudge someone who committed suicide, provided they had rationally come to the conclusion that these criteria were satisfied. While I would never advise suicide, I think my view has changed to the point where I can accept it in certain circumstances without condemning it. I'm wondering what others think about the morality of suicide. Is it on par with murder because it ends a human life? Or is it a different act because rational beings are free to choose death for themselves although not for others?
Honestly, what does it matter? Why do we care if suicide is morally justified? What good is justification when you're dead? So we can judge the person who commits it? So that we can say that he or she will be damned to hell for doing it? What is the purpose of knowing the answer to this question? Is it so that you can justify your own thoughts of suicide? People do what they have to do. That's it. Some people don't want to live. It's their choice. Trying to decide whether or not what they've done is justifiable is useless speculation, unless it applies to you.

Do the dead care if they are justified by men? Do the dead care if they are forgiven by mere men?

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Sonofason
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Post #83

Post by Sonofason »

Fallibleone wrote:
ChristianGuy wrote:Well, as an atheist you are not going to like my response, but you just have to trust God. No matter what the situation is.
I guess that I would find it hard to trust in a being who feels it would be better for my children to watch me slowly and painfully deteriorate into a senseless vegetable who needs to be fed through a tube than to have to come to terms with my absence, but remember me as a functioning human being who knew who they were.
You don't have to be fed through a tube. Let me rephrase this into a question. Is it suicide to refuse to be fed through a tube, if you are incapable of eating through your mouth?

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Mask of the Devil
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Post #84

Post by Mask of the Devil »

Suicide is a personal choice, if not induced. When it is, it's homicide.

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Post #85

Post by Plumbus Grumbo »

Mask of the Devil wrote: Suicide is a personal choice, if not induced. When it is, it's homicide.

That seems a bit oversimplified. If person x (or group x) is torturing someone (mentally or physically) when is that line crossed? There are several naturally occurring phenomena (certain toxins in flora and fauna) that almost always cause a person to commit suicide. The anguish is unbearable. Most people call such instances "suicide," but they grasp the reality of it being something much different than "normal" suicide. The toxin/torture caused the death as surely as the person himself.

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Post #86

Post by RightReason »

Suicide is never ok. That doesn't mean I don't understand why a person might do so, but no, it is never ok.

Most people who think there might be situations where suicide is acceptable do not IMO understand man's purpose or the meaning of suffering.

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Rather in Heaven than living under Satan and for Satan...

Post #87

Post by Aetixintro »

I think the Golden Rule supports suicide if it's done under justifiable circumstances.

If life is unbearable then suicide should be ok. Perhaps one has the duty to flag one's situation first so that the good people can have a chance to amend your situation. That should be fair.

Conclusion: I'd rather see a person who has committed suicide in Heaven than serving Satan on Earth. If the sanity/soul is threatened then suicide is fine! Golden Rule, that is, as well as 10.(?) Command: Respect your neighbour etc. so that they are allowed to go if situation requires it!

PS: I agree that induced suicide is a kind of homicide!
I'm cool! :) - Stronger Religion every day! Also by "mathematical Religion", the eternal forms, God closing the door on corrupt humanity, possibly!

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Re: Rather in Heaven than living under Satan and for Satan..

Post #88

Post by RightReason »

[Replying to post 86 by Aetixintro]

What is unbearable? Many people have had to endure what a great many of us would consider 'unbearable' and yet they do because well quite frankly anything if you really think about it is bearable -- that is until it's not and results in psychical death.

"Conclusion: I'd rather see a person who has committed suicide in Heaven than serving Satan on Earth. If the sanity/soul is threatened then suicide is fine!"

If the person was serving Satan on Earth, you will not see them in heaven. And insanity or mental illness is not a sin. Are you saying it would be better off if those among us who suffer from mental illness/depression/even psychotic tendencies were encouraged to kill themselves?

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McCulloch
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Post #89

Post by McCulloch »

RightReason wrote:Suicide is never ok.
Thank you for unsupported opinion on this matter. I know some people who have a painful terminal illness who disagree with you. I hope that you are never in their situation, but if you are, I hope that you would be allowed to choose your own end.
Examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.
First Epistle to the Church of the Thessalonians
The truth will make you free.
Gospel of John

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Post #90

Post by RightReason »

[Replying to McCulloch]

I know some people who have a painful terminal illness who disagree with YOU. I too hope you are never in a similar situation. If I ever am, I pray that I will have the strength and hope to endure until the end offering up my pain and suffering for others.

IMO, suicide sends the message that human beings are only of value if we are strong and healthy.

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