Friday, January 28, 2011

To be Human

Christ_after_death,photo_JerusalamImage via Wikipedia
Early this week I got the news that a friend of my had died, later on that I found out that it was suicide.

Although I hadn't seen or heard from him for a long time, the last time I was with him was intense and at the time formative for a young man like myself. He was a Christian of the evangelical charismatic persuasion. A leader who had influenced hundreds. The lead up to his death he was tortured by chronic illness and exacerbated with depression.

Christianity I don't think has ever been comfortable with suicide. I haven't.  For a Christian to die this way it retorts: Christianity is no place of peace. In many ways its the most selfish thing in the world; a complete violation of the Jesus second commandment to love your neighbour as your self.
For myself I detest the idea that it is a 'sin'. As most people in society say other than Christians (who prefer to use the word 'sin') we are only 'human'.
To be 'human', others understand the pain and suffering which a person undergoes to suicide. It casts no condemnation or judgement. Yet is still disappointed at the loss. An understanding that yes, we to maybe place in this situation one day.

Sometimes the silence of Jesus is deafening.

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urbanmonk said...

Sorry for your loss. Have lost friends to suicide myself and its a terrible thing

Scott said...

thanks urbanmonk, to be honest I hadn't seen the person for years they lived in the states and our contact was via facebook. Suicide was the shock...

Anonymous said...

'Christianity I don't think has ever been comfortable with suicide'

this has been a moral dillema for a some time now. it is interesting to study the moral taboos of different times.

look what the authorities did to poor old oscar wilde for his sexual persausion.
would that happen now? would suicide be such a taboo in his day as it is now.

LSD was legal up till 1966.

I am not making light of suicide as I could comment on the matter on a personal level.

but as a subject of the morality of our times it is an interesting subject. Never would a suicide be reported in the media for instance.
that is the expected decorum of present day media, if one can imagine present day media having much of that.
I don't know the history of that.

Anonymous said...

other moral historical stuff.
the poms used to teach smoking in schools when tobacco was first brought over from the indies.
it's a no no today.
frank Zappa declared it his favoured vegetable.
smoking was promoted and encouraged outrageously for so long and now one is branded for taking a puff.
check out Hogarths etching of beer street and Rum ally. I think it is rum. anyway that is a bit of propaganda of its day suggesting beer is the respectable mans drink.
now advertising grog is banned to quite a degree.

swearing in the media was taboo it seems up until recently and now certain swear words are legit. todays 'age' had a cartoon using a swear word in association with tony abbott. there would be an outcry a few years ago, not many years ago. electing to die gracefully or dignified and by your own decision has been a hot moral and ethical debate in the media for the last ten years or so with Nishke (cant spell his name)hot on the matter.
injecting rooms....would not be ever thought of a couple of decades ago; well it wouldn't be discussed anyway.
many many moral and ehtical issues will come and go as they always have. suicide? maybe not in our lifetime but who knows. The subjects bandied about over my life have been many.
women in the workforce was very controversial until they were needed in the war effort.
nothing in this world should surprise us. opium dens may make a comeback in little lonsdale street!
the idea of a sabbath may arise and this friday night shopping could cease as it only came about in the 1970's.
when robert helpman returned to Australia in the 30's I think, he wore seude shoes and this was such a radical declaration of his homosexuality it caused an outcry in man in australia wore suede shoes! you'd be a poof and no one would want that found out. on and on i could go but i trust you get the drift about how morals are like fashion in some way.

Anonymous said...

another world - antony and the johnsons.

have a listen on you tube

I need another place
Will there be peace
I need another world
This one's nearly gone
Still have to many dreams
Never seen the light
I need another world
A place where I can go
I'm gonna miss the sea
I'm gonna miss the snow
I'm gonna miss the bees
I miss the things that grow
I'm gonna miss the trees
I'm gonna miss the sun
I miss the animals
I'm gonna miss you all
I need another place
Will there be peace
I need another world
This one's nearly gone
I'm gonna miss the birds
Singing all there songs
I'm gonna miss the wind
Been kissing me so long
Another world
Another world
Another world
Another world

Anonymous said...

Rapture - antony and the johnsons

Eyes are falling
Lips are falling
Hair is falling to the ground
Slowly, softly
Falling, falling
Down in silence to the ground
All the world is falling, falling
All the blue
From me and you
Tear drops falling to the ground
Tear drops
I'm talkin' 'bout your tear drops
For instance
Oh my mama
She's been falling
Falling down for quite some time
And oh my papa
He's been falling
Falling down for quite some time
Oh my friends
I've watched them falling
Falling softly to the ground
Oh the leaves
The Leaves are falling
Down in silence to the ground
Is this the rapture?
Is this the rapture?
Why don't you tell me
Is this the rapture?
Is this the rapture?
Our father who art in heaven
For the kingdom, the power, the glory, yours
Now and forever

Scott said...

Interesting thoughts Anonymous. Yeah I think there is a moral component. Yet even if I wasn't a Christian I think I would struggle. Not so much the assisted suicide (euthanasia). But those of healthy people who have felt that hope has abandoned them. The issue is not that I disagree with there action but I missed there hopelessness.

Anonymous said...

I can see a life of a depressive person living kind of 2 lives in parallel where day to day living goes on with school, work, socializing etc, and at the same time the person can see this stuff they do objectively like from outside of it from the other parallel life where melancholy reigns. I think this is where others are so shocked to hear of someones actions when they appeared okay. that is because we see only the day to day life and not the other one lived in parallel that could ultimatly dictate that persons decisions. I have not read anything that describes this reality but it is my experience. so the sun can shine, spring is in the air life is beautiful....but that is not the point when one lives day to day as i picture it. life is rich and full right at our doorstep or just opening our eyes, it is that close, but so wierdly it is all objective and removed; acknowledged but the person is removed from it. their is a question here...which is the reality? both are potentially real and fearful. this is such a big subject and much has been written i am sure. i think it is just a tissue paper thinness between the two and so so many people suffer when that vulnerable partition is torn. that is a human condition.
we can believe so solidly in something and one day or year we are shaken up, the tissue is rent and we see anew and can be lost or found. phew.