For many years now…
Almost thirty, I have pondered why the thought of Euthanasia
And Suicide are treated almost as pariah events… It eroded my belief system of old.
I had to separate myself from man-made religions to know the dilemmas of the psychologically beleaguered.
Why do we as westerners almost always try to ignore death as if it were some type of unspeakable, maybe voodoo-like topic. Especially the act of suicide. Or even euthanasia.
I don’t endorse suicide necessarily. I am on the fence. But that is only because I want to experience more in life. And I am not yet ill enough to consider it.
Are suicide or euthanasia sins of any kind? Moral or religious?
I think not.
Why not? You might ask.
Well, I worked hospice for three years, know what war is, and like all of us have seen friends and family members die.
We speak of death in the third person and with our backs to it.
Many of my hospice patients wished to die… Living in pain, that only suicide or euthanasia, given their courage to do so, could relieve them from.
I grieved and grasped for answers when my stepdad and half-brother took their own lives within 10 months of each other. It left me devastated for some years.
Those events were buried in my psyche, but festering. Me thinking, what could I have done to prevent their self-demise. I could only project… It was futile. My wisdom and understanding immutably lacking.
Gradually, I came to understand, it’s not about me. It was entirely their choice. A choice that could only be exercised with supreme courage and “letting go” of what they could no longer tolerate. An act, anything but cowardly as so labeled by the “spooked” observers looking on sheepishly at funerals. We all feel guilty for what it is we thought we might have left undone with their passing. And can only feel uneasiness at our lack of support for them while they were alive.
Could it be their taking of their own lives was an act of their personal spirituality? Based in their free will and freedom of choice? All of which is our God given right. That is after all what we all so adamantly proclaim.
Freedom of will. The examples are endless. The Constitution, Government, Justice, and even the Eve of Adam’s eye. They all chose the apple while using their free will. Free will has no forbidden fruit attached to it does it? It wouldn’t be free will if disclaimers to free will were attached to bible quotes. The New Testament was recorded almost 200 years after Christ’s death. Mouth to mouth stories can’t circle a neighborhood block without the stories becoming clouded and fuzzy within a couple of days. Doctrine becomes self-serving for the teacher’s du jour… Doctrine becomes corrected time and time again. What teacher can resist the temptation to correct someone else’s work?
Free will allows us to digest that which we choose to ingest and digest. In Adam and Eve’s story, to choose to sin. And live or die with the consequences.
Sidebar: Is sex a sin if we are designed to do it? Resisting the obvious might be a cosmic joke lived out on the stage of earth.
And since there are not absolute answers, I will press on with my developing feelings.
I can only imagine the fatigue for some of us, wrought from physical and mental despair that leads to ending our journey here.
Intellectually we know suicide is a result of disrupted psyches and spent bodies.
It can be based in brain synapses, social alienation, loss of love, post traumatic stress, cancers, or drugs and alcohol… To name a few of the insidious causes.
Whatever the reason, whatever the cause, or however we label it… It is but for the participant to know why he acts.
I’ve wondered. Is not freeing oneself from the fear of death an individual’s declaration of liberation and the gift of what we refer to as God’s free will?
Letting go of one’s own not understanding, might possibly be the gift of self-forgiveness. And the initiation of one’s own free will.
Only the deceased may know, or not know. This, I feel, is the intended mystery of our birth incarnations. I am no longer in the judgment business on suicide and euthanasia.
When one can say without fear in the taking of their life, “enough is enough” and initiate the ending of his or her pain, I will not judge them. Nor should the law of man, or a reference to vague bible understandings that were written and revised long after the progenitors’ input was etched, necessarily be our cast-in-stone ideology.
Here we are, with an only recently evolved cerebrum and voice larynx to spout the fulminations of a “spooked” mankind’ on a subject we were perhaps not intended to understand.
I prefer one of the ways the North American Indian went off to die. They just went off, without inconveniencing others, took no food and waited until it was over. What grace… And it might be considered by our society as suicide! Trying to stay alive only because it might be a sin in the confusion of church doctrine perhaps, is not an exercise of free will. The irony is that it took one’s free will to join the church of their choice. Only to be bridled by its dictums.
I can only imagine one day that higher knowledge will be revealed to us. That knowledge from advanced intelligences in the cosmos, that the tokens we hold for our heavens entry, can be spent with our own choosing in our own time. And not what voodoo religions prescribed conduct and rules, created by man, might ask us to follow.
We are spiritually infantile in a timeless cosmos.
And if any of my assumptions or theories have merit, I will allow my free will to live and die as I see fit… Not inconveniencing any loved ones or the secular world.
I can, and will, continue to miss those who took their own lives. I will also respect their choices, which to me, are all part of “Free Will.” A gift of choice.
Be it the exercise of Euthanasia or Suicide.