What happens after suicide?

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Empty Cloud
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What happens after suicide?

Post by Empty Cloud » Tue Nov 26, 2019 2:26 am

Dear all,

I would like to discuss the repercussions of suicide as compared to normal death conditions.

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Queequeg
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Queequeg » Tue Nov 26, 2019 2:30 am

Folks - this can be a touchy subject. Please be mindful.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Tue Nov 26, 2019 5:35 pm

Yes this is indeed a very sensitive (and possibly dangerous) subject to touch on. No wonder the lack of reply in this thread.
Anyways from what I was taught, Buddhist traditions generally frown upon suicides. The suicider is more likely to end up with more unfavourable rebirths (with respect to the Dharma), and also more likely to commit suicides again and again after each rebirth. (Eg. suicides up to 7 rebriths, as per some Aisan Mahayana Buddhist folktales).

For consultation, you can also read up other webpages:
https://spokanefavs.com/ask-a-buddhist- ... r-suicide/
"Ask A Buddhist: What happens to someone after suicide?"
https://www.urbandharma.org/udharma/suicide.html
" Buddhism and Suicide --- The Case of Channa"
- More similar webpages available in any online search.


My opinion is: do not encourage suicide, best to seek medical/professional help for all those would-be-suiciders.
Better to die trying to live a good life, then to take your own life as an quick escape from misery. It also helps to find the simple and good things in life to enjoy, and focus on those happy hobbies and moments.

tkp67
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by tkp67 » Tue Nov 26, 2019 5:53 pm

I have had to deal with the repercussions of suicide many times and it was a catalyst for me to understand buddhism. I have, had and will continue to make a conscious and even vocal effort (I asked buddha) to help me turn their karma into merit.

Even if the karma left behind effects only me, I still feel hoping to release them from that causation even on a personal level I believe to be part of the process of liberation for both myself and them. This is of course presumed through contemplation and strong belief in the compassion of the buddhas of the ten directions.

I do not think it is as productive to uncover the consequence for those who have committed suicide rather than the actions we can take to help liberate them as well as the living who where related to them.

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Thu Nov 28, 2019 6:23 pm

tkp67 wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 5:53 pm
I have had to deal with the repercussions of suicide many times and it was a catalyst for me to understand buddhism. I have, had and will continue to make a conscious and even vocal effort (I asked buddha) to help me turn their karma into merit.

Even if the karma left behind effects only me, I still feel hoping to release them from that causation even on a personal level I believe to be part of the process of liberation for both myself and them. This is of course presumed through contemplation and strong belief in the compassion of the buddhas of the ten directions.

I do not think it is as productive to uncover the consequence for those who have committed suicide rather than the actions we can take to help liberate them as well as the living who where related to them.
Hmm good points, better to pray for deceased and hope they enjoy a better afterlife, than to condemn them. Hopefully some Bodhisattav/ Buddha would rescue them from Samsara.

I do not mean any disrespect to the dead, or intend to belittle the miserable circumstance that would drive one to suicide. And I would think that often times, it is not the fault of the suicider, but they are the victims placed in a undesirable situation, that is not of their own will nor choice. We are in the Saha /Earth world after all, where suffering and strife is plenty.
Still I think it's better to prevent suicides whenever we feasibly can, do not waste lives and chances.
Feel free to ignore the folk tale I mentioned earlier, I just heard it from an older relative in my family, and it might not be true for every suicides.

upolo87
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by upolo87 » Sat Mar 28, 2020 10:10 pm

This is all the same scary. It is not worth a man to commit suicide under any circumstances.

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WesleyP
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by WesleyP » Wed Apr 01, 2020 2:50 am

It's a bad idea ~ precisely because we still deal with our consciousness and situation After death.

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kusulu
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by kusulu » Thu Apr 02, 2020 8:18 pm

When life becomes too painful to bear, people want to end that life. It is a missed opportunity to find the true end of suffering.

:buddha1:

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Grigoris
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Grigoris » Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:46 pm

What happens after suicide is the same thing that happens after any type of death: the previous mind moment influences the next mind moment that will arise when rebirth occurs.

So whichever emotion/thought/motivation/feeling was dominant in the moment before death...

In the absence of a strong emotion/thought/motivation/feeling at the moment before death, then the strongest mental habit that one had during their lifetime will manifest. In the absence of that, then the the strongest mental habit one had in their previous lifetime will manifest. Ad nauseum...

This is why phowa practice (and other practices that one is meant to do when the signs of death become apparent) is so important.

If one has the good karma to have a teacher to guide them through the bardo (and one has prepared for the bardo experience) that is also helpful.

So a person that commits suicide with a mind full of hatred or sorrow will have a different rebirth than, for example, the Arhats that committed suicide during the Buddha's time, in order to avoid relapsing into an afflicted state before their parinirvana.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:44 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:46 pm
So a person that commits suicide with a mind full of hatred or sorrow will have a different rebirth than, for example, the Arhats that committed suicide during the Buddha's time, in order to avoid relapsing into an afflicted state before their parinirvana.
Interesting point you have raised there Grigoris. Some examples about these Arhats suicides found over the internet. include tales regarding Venerable Godhika and Dabba Mallaputta:
https://suttacentral.net/sn4.23/en/sujato
https://suttacentral.net/ud8.10/en/anandajoti

This topic about historical Arahant suicides has turned into lengthy and controversial debates on Dhammawheel, with inconclusive results:

Code: Select all

https://dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=34920 
Re: Arahant's suicide
Overall those cases are very special exceptions rather than the norm. I still think it is better to not encourage suicides and pitiful waste of life. Let old age & illness naturally take it course, in order to learn the lesson about death and impermanence sufferings be known in full, in order to not repeat the horribly futile loops of samaric reincarnations of life and death again and again.
(The only reasonable exception allowed in are the noble enlightened beings Arahants / Bodhisattavs / Buddhas - beings the with the full powers of Anuttara Samyak Sambodhi - only they would be able to teach & rescue sentient beings in Samsara to get out of it, without drowning in sufferings themselves).

I strongly agree with the below statement from buddhanet, but there is no need to condemn those have already committed suicide, as salvation and liberation is much more important than condemnations. Wishing all sentient beings well and happy ~
http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/dha ... /fdd30.htm
His attitude to suicide is clear from the Vinaya where it is an offense entailing expulsion from the Sangha for a monk to encourage or assist someone to suicide, and thus on a par with murder.

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Grigoris
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Grigoris » Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:35 pm

well wisher wrote:
Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:44 pm
Let old age & illness naturally take it course, in order to learn the lesson about death and impermanence sufferings be known in full, in order to not repeat the horribly futile loops of samaric reincarnations of life and death again and again.
Experiencing suffering per se does not necessarily teach us any lessons. We have been experiencing suffering in one form of another through countless lifetimes and yet... Here we are!

If one does not have a precious human birth (with the eighteen freedoms and advantages) then there is no guarantee of liberation, no matter how much you suffer. AND one may have a precious human birth and squander it anyway.

So before condemning others or judging them because of their expressed willingness to commit suicide, it would be infinitely better to spend one's (precious) time in striving to liberate oneself.

Once you are a Buddha and can see the consequences of all actions, then you will have a solid basis for judging actions as right or wrong.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Sun Apr 05, 2020 7:14 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:35 pm
well wisher wrote:
Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:44 pm
Let old age & illness naturally take it course, in order to learn the lesson about death and impermanence sufferings be known in full, in order to not repeat the horribly futile loops of samaric reincarnations of life and death again and again.
Experiencing suffering per se does not necessarily teach us any lessons. We have been experiencing suffering in one form of another through countless lifetimes and yet... Here we are!

If one does not have a precious human birth (with the eighteen freedoms and advantages) then there is no guarantee of liberation, no matter how much you suffer. AND one may have a precious human birth and squander it anyway.

So before condemning others or judging them because of their expressed willingness to commit suicide, it would be infinitely better to spend one's (precious) time in striving to liberate oneself.

Once you are a Buddha and can see the consequences of all actions, then you will have a solid basis for judging actions as right or wrong.
I would like to add that I still think it is ok to try to talk others out of suicide , but in a courteous and friendly & compassionate manner, such as reminding them what actives or hobbies they enjoyed previously ...etc.
But definitely no condemnation or judging, and not even continuous pestering; just one friendly recommendation, and that's it - other's life are their own, conventionally speaking. There is no need to become tyrants over others' life. And no attachment to either life or death in Samsara.

Thus the safer bet to maximize that precious time you speak of, is getting killed by old age / organ failures or other natural causes outside of one's own control,. rather than actively seek to end one's own life, or any form of homicide. Life ended by Karma is natural: the toll of life is death, whilst in samsara.
I agree with the rest of your points.

Wishing all sentient beings to all quickly become Buddhas and achieve Nirvana ~ well wisher.

kausalya
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by kausalya » Sun Apr 05, 2020 7:44 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Sun Apr 05, 2020 6:35 pm
well wisher wrote:
Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:44 pm
Let old age & illness naturally take it course, in order to learn the lesson about death and impermanence sufferings be known in full, in order to not repeat the horribly futile loops of samaric reincarnations of life and death again and again.
Experiencing suffering per se does not necessarily teach us any lessons. We have been experiencing suffering in one form of another through countless lifetimes and yet... Here we are!

If one does not have a precious human birth (with the eighteen freedoms and advantages) then there is no guarantee of liberation, no matter how much you suffer. AND one may have a precious human birth and squander it anyway.

So before condemning others or judging them because of their expressed willingness to commit suicide, it would be infinitely better to spend one's (precious) time in striving to liberate oneself.

Once you are a Buddha and can see the consequences of all actions, then you will have a solid basis for judging actions as right or wrong.
:good:

I don't remember the source, but I heard once at a Dharma teaching that the completion of suicide entails wandering in constant darkness for eons, somewhere even unrecognizable as one of the lower realms.

True or not, I imagine that this statement was made to highlight the fact that even in hell, we have a remote chance to be released by the experience of compassion for others. Suicide, it seems to me, pushes that possibility even further away. Just an idea.

The key for me is that a person experiencing/expressing that wish should never be made to feel at fault, or shamed in any way. Namely, suffering causes us to say & do things we would never do in the absence of suffering, and pushes us toward increasingly inconceivable results.

Compassion from us (& for us) is enough to counter this potential, esp to the degree that we allow such feelings to be tempered by wisdom.
"For as long as space remains,
For as long as sentient beings remain,
Until then may I too remain
To dispel the miseries of the world."
(Shantideva)

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Grigoris
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Grigoris » Mon Apr 06, 2020 8:25 am

I would like to add that I still think it is ok to try to talk others out of suicide , but in a courteous and friendly & compassionate manner...
I am a psychologist working with deeply traumatised people, I talk people out of suicide almost every day.
Life ended by Karma is natural...
Everything happening in this world is natural. Nothing is outside of nature. Committing suicide is also an expression of karma.

Why do you presume that a slow and "natural" death by cancer (for example), is any more liberatory than death by suicide? I am interested to hear your logic.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Mon Apr 06, 2020 1:10 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 8:25 am
Why do you presume that a slow and "natural" death by cancer (for example), is any more liberatory than death by suicide? I am interested to hear your logic.
One possible logical explanation would be based on "time" and "ignorance".

First of all, let's start with the definition of liberation:
https://www.dictionary.com/browse/liberate
liberate
verb
to set free, as from imprisonment or bondage.
But imprisonment & bondage can mean many different things.
So for the purpose of this discussion, let's narrow down imprisonment as being stuck in repeated samsaric cycles of life and death.
What ways to become free from this? One theoretical possible way is through learning to reduce ignorance, to learn about all the possible flaws and downsides for each action, to learn proper ethics and morality so as to not repeat the same mistakes that may lead to being stuck in this horrible repetitive cycles.
One example possible lesson: To not be an intentional mass murderer with little regards to others well beings. Mass murders with no regrets likely would get punished by Karma to repeat yet another life cycle, likely this time to suffer as the victim, to learn those ethical lessons to not intentionally murder others.

Also historical motto /famous quotes like these must have existed for valid reasons: "haste make waste", "no pain no gain", and "Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it." .

The consider the degree of "one's own action and control" and "deliberateness" and "speed" in conventional terms.
Suicide is the most deliberate and direct action towards death, and also the quickest.
Cancer *might* still happen despite one's own best health practices to avoid it, based on many media / news / medical reports on internet and many other sources. And there exists many medical treatment for it, to delay or possibly cure it.

Now many complex lessons on this Earth / Saha world takes time to learn, especially direct experiences which takes the most time but have the biggest impact. Beneficial lessons helps reduce ignorance, and hopefully lead the way toward liberation of this cycle of life and death.

Thus suiciders would have less chances and time to learn the deeper impact lessons during life that could lead to liberation, thus more like getting stuck in the loop of life and death, than compared to cancer or other possible death outside of one's own direct control.

--------------------
Why "repeated samsaric cycles of life and death." is worser suffering than physical sufferings:

Because human physical pains can be endured through will power, and there also exist many modern medications / herbal remedies / best health practices that can help avoid or suppress those physical pains too. Cut wounds heal over time. The suffering of the temporary physical pains is of lesser degree then the suffering of being stuck in the seemingly-infinite loop of samsaric life and death:
One life of cancer, has less total physical suffering , than multiple lives of mixed suicides & cancers & whatever deaths..

-------------------

Anyways, kudos and highlights to the non-condemnation and non-judging parts, due to the sensitive nature of this topic overall.
The above is just logical theory anyways, it might not be true for all people and for all cases, feel free to pick out the flaws you may see.

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Grigoris
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Grigoris » Mon Apr 06, 2020 3:45 pm

well wisher wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 1:10 pm
Thus suiciders would have less chances and time to learn the deeper impact lessons during life that could lead to liberation, thus more like getting stuck in the loop of life and death, than compared to cancer or other possible death outside of one's own direct control.
Do you know many people that have had insight into the dependently originated nature of phenomena because they have died of cancer(for example)?

So where is the guarantee (where is your proof) that a long and tortuous death is better (or more beneficial) than a quick one by one's-own-hand?
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

kausalya
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by kausalya » Mon Apr 06, 2020 4:28 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 3:45 pm
well wisher wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 1:10 pm
Thus suiciders would have less chances and time to learn the deeper impact lessons during life that could lead to liberation, thus more like getting stuck in the loop of life and death, than compared to cancer or other possible death outside of one's own direct control.
Do you know many people that have had insight into the dependently originated nature of phenomena because they have died of cancer(for example)?

So where is the guarantee (where is your proof) that a long and tortuous death is better (or more beneficial) than a quick one by one's-own-hand?
We have the illusion that more time grants more opportunities. In reality, the true opportunities arise because of previously-developed karmic potentials, and nothing else. The rest is just maya.
"For as long as space remains,
For as long as sentient beings remain,
Until then may I too remain
To dispel the miseries of the world."
(Shantideva)

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well wisher
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by well wisher » Mon Apr 06, 2020 9:34 pm

kausalya wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 4:28 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 3:45 pm
well wisher wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 1:10 pm
Thus suiciders would have less chances and time to learn the deeper impact lessons during life that could lead to liberation, thus more like getting stuck in the loop of life and death, than compared to cancer or other possible death outside of one's own direct control.
Do you know many people that have had insight into the dependently originated nature of phenomena because they have died of cancer(for example)?

So where is the guarantee (where is your proof) that a long and tortuous death is better (or more beneficial) than a quick one by one's-own-hand?
We have the illusion that more time grants more opportunities. In reality, the true opportunities arise because of previously-developed karmic potentials, and nothing else. The rest is just maya.
Thanks for the responses. Looks like "I" will need more practices & experience to realize these points further about the intrinsic illusionary nature about time and opportunities then.

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Grigoris
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by Grigoris » Mon Apr 06, 2020 10:27 pm

well wisher wrote:
Mon Apr 06, 2020 9:34 pm
Thanks for the responses. Looks like "I" will need more practices & experience to realize these points further about the intrinsic illusionary nature about time and opportunities then.
Just to be straight: I am not disagreeing with your view that suicide should be avoided (where/when possible), just your reasoning.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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WesleyP
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Re: What happens after suicide?

Post by WesleyP » Tue Apr 07, 2020 2:10 am

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Apr 02, 2020 10:46 pm
What happens after suicide is the same thing that happens after any type of death: the previous mind moment influences the next mind moment that will arise when rebirth occurs.

So whichever emotion/thought/motivation/feeling was dominant in the moment before death...

In the absence of a strong emotion/thought/motivation/feeling at the moment before death, then the strongest mental habit that one had during their lifetime will manifest. In the absence of that, then the the strongest mental habit one had in their previous lifetime will manifest. Ad nauseum...

This is why phowa practice (and other practices that one is meant to do when the signs of death become apparent) is so important.

If one has the good karma to have a teacher to guide them through the bardo (and one has prepared for the bardo experience) that is also helpful.

So a person that commits suicide with a mind full of hatred or sorrow will have a different rebirth than, for example, the Arhats that committed suicide during the Buddha's time, in order to avoid relapsing into an afflicted state before their parinirvana.
Thank You for posting this! . . .

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