Satbir Singh Kapoor
India having largest youth population in the world has become the suicide capital of the world. Out of every three cases of suicide reported every 15 minutes in India, one is committed by a youth in the age group of 15 to 29. Over 1 million people commit suicide every year and about 10 to 20 million suicide attempts takes place worldwide. It takes nine months for a life to begin but less than nine seconds to put an end to it.
The main cause of growing suicide rates is hopelessness. Inability to accept failure or loss in self-esteem leads to dejectedness and suicide. Suicide is the feeling that conditions will never improve, that there is no solution to the problem and for many a feeling that dying by suicide would be better than living. Depression is a state of low mood and feeling of sadness, anxiety, emptiness, guilt or restlessness. Depression is actually due to an imbalance of chemicals in brain and it needs mental treatment. Now the question is, is suicide really a solution to the problem? The answer is obviously a big NO. Suicide is never an option to overcome depression or hopelessness and the type of mind set that accompanies it as the best option to get rid of problems needs to be changed as soon as possible. Such people have a different type of mind set, they are suffering from some sort of mental disorder. The people with these types of mind set think that killing themselves is the only solution. They can’t think straight and positively. So, it is necessary that people with such sort of mind set get proper treatment so that they can start searching for alternative solution to their problems.
All religions of the world consider ending life of oneself or other human being as a greatest sin. Suicide is considered as a murder and is not pardonable as it is against the law of nature. Sikhism believes that life is a gift from God, and we have a duty to use life in a responsible way. Sikhism see suicide as interference in God’s plan and order. Human birth is a rare opportunity and must be taken advantage of by naamabhiyaas (meditation) and bani recitation to burn off good/bad karma and get closer to Waheguru. The final destination of every Aatma (soul) is to find and reach Paramatma (God/Super power). The soul has to travel (born differently) through 84000 Yonis to get a birth through human body and thus this life is very precious because human body is the only door for any soul from where it can attain salvation.
According to Hindu Shastras all Rishis and Munis wanted to live in the human body for so long inspite of the fact that they never enjoyed any materialistic thing of the world, they knew that departing from the human body will throw their soul again in the life cycle of 84 lakhs Yonis and whole process of birth and death and rebirth etc. is painful and 84 Lakh times it is simply unacceptable. Some scriptures state that to die by suicide (or any violent death) results in becoming a ghost, wandering earth until the time one would have otherwise died, had one not committed suicide.
Moreover body is property of soul with a purpose and not a property of mind. Hence when you decide to end your life for mental frustrations you bring the pain to no one but your own soul. Accordingly it is an act of forced theft which mortal mind do on the property of immortal soul thus certainly suicide is a sin.
When some living being is killed the soul in it experiences torture. This torture is the greatest sin and avoiding such torture is greatest among good deeds (Ahimsa paramo dharmah). For this reason only the non-vegetarian food is prohibited by scriptures because process of getting the non-vegetarian food by killing the body and torture is a sin.
In Jainism suicide is regarded as worst form of himsa (violence) and is not permitted. Ahimsa (non-violence) is fundamental doctrine of Jainism.
There were a few followers of Buddha who were mediating on why there is so much suffering in the world. They became depressed and committed suicide. The Buddha said that is not the right approach – you cannot become free of suffering by killing yourself. Buddhist believe that even when we die, we don’t stop existing, it is just the end of this life, for our mind and consciousness will continue to exist and go to another life.
Whatever suffering we experience is the result of Karma we have created in this and past lives. In order to be free of Karma, we need to perform spiritual practice not suicide. Killing one self does not necessarily end one’s Karma. The Karma that you have to suffer will be with you and it will be there in your next life. Your next life might even be worse than this one. You should stay alive as long as you can and that way you continue to create good Karma and purify your bad Karma.
All religions consider suicide as an act of cowardice and forbid to waste precious life by committing suicide. Life is a blessing of God and it is a golden opportunity to attain salvation or meet God (Paramatma). The creator has endowed us with great qualities. It is required of every human being to unfold these qualities and work for the betterment of mankind. The God’s world is full of opportunities and if someone fails in doing something he should wait and try until the conditions improve, rather the killing oneself.