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Suicide Rates Religion Vs Atheism


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http://www.conservapedia.com/Atheism_and_suicide

 

 

Not sure if this is the right place to post this but im wondering if anyone has any information about this?

 

Are suicide rates higher for the atheist community because its a SMALLER community?

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"There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Judging whether life is or is not worth living amounts to answering the fundamental question of philosophy. All the rest — whether or not the world has three dimensions, whether the mind has nine or twelve categories — comes afterwards."

 

"I therefore conclude that the meaning of life is the most urgent of questions. How to answer it? On all essential problems (I mean thereby those that run the risk of leading to death or those that intensify the passion of living) there are probably but two methods of thought: the method of La Palisse and the method of Don Quixote. Solely the balance between evidence and lyricism can allow us to achieve simultaneously emotion and lucidity."

 

"Living, naturally, is never easy. You continue making the gestures commanded by existence for many reasons, the first of which is habit. Dying voluntarily implies that you have recognized, even instinctively, the ridiculous character of that habit, the absence of any profound reason for living, the insane character of that daily agitation, the uselessness of suffering."

 

"But does that insult to existence, that flat denial in which it is plunged come from the fact that it has no meaning? Does its absurdity require one to escape it through hope or suicide — that is what must be clarified, hunted down, and elucidated while brushing aside all the rest. Does the Absurd dictate death? This problem must be given priority over others, outside all methods of thought and all exercises of the disinterested mind."

 

"It happens that the stage sets collapse. Rising, streetcar, four hours in the office or the factory, meal, streetcar, four hours of work, meal, sleep,  and Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday and Saturday according to the same rhythm — this path is easily followed most of the time. But one day the “why” arises and everything begins in that weariness tinged with amazement. “Begins” — this is important. Weariness comes at the end of the acts of a mechanical life, but at the same time it inaugurates the impulse of consciousness. It awakens consciousness and provokes what follows. What follows is the gradual return into the chain or it is the definitive awakening. At the end of the awakening comes, in time, the consequence: suicide or recovery. In itself weariness has something sickening about it. Here, I must conclude that it is good. For everything begins with consciousness and nothing is worth anything except through it. There is nothing original about these remarks. But they are obvious; that is enough for a while, during a sketchy reconnaissance in the origins of the absurd. Mere “anxiety,” as Heidegger says, is at the source of everything."

 

[The Myth of Sisyphus, Albert Camus]

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I think the religious taboo against suicide does have impact, but this still appears to be a rather complex issue. Why do physicians have the highest rate of suicide among the professions? Lots of answers there, too, but I'm sure that today many would blame Obamacare; in previous decades it would be due to various other liberal policies instituted by our government. 

 

Back on topic, Christians (I think that's what we're comparing atheists to here) don't want to usurp God's plan and they look forward to the "next" life. Atheists realize this is our one shot at existence, and when it goes irretrievably sour, it's time to call it quits. Atheists generally support physician assisted suicide for the terminally ill while Christians want to preserve the sacred nature of being technically alive as long as possible. Sometimes suicide is the best answer, and Christians aren't known for embracing the best answers. I suspect the argument that atheists are generally more depressed than Christians is false. Depressed Christians just throw themselves deeper into religious psychosis rather than throwing themselves off a bridge.

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TrueFreedom: "The Myth of Sisyphus" Thanks for sharing that with us. It certainly accurately describes my life up to a point. That is, my working for years and then suddenly asking myself what I was doing and

where was it leading. The author really doesn't answer those questions. I think that is because each

person must find his/her own personal answer. That, perhaps in itself is the purpose of life.

My simplistic answer is to enjoy life the best you can under the circumstances. It's not profound, but

it's the best I can do. bill

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TrueFreedom: "The Myth of Sisyphus" Thanks for sharing that with us. It certainly accurately describes my life up to a point. That is, my working for years and then suddenly asking myself what I was doing and

where was it leading. The author really doesn't answer those questions. I think that is because each

person must find his/her own personal answer. That, perhaps in itself is the purpose of life.

My simplistic answer is to enjoy life the best you can under the circumstances. It's not profound, but

it's the best I can do. bill

I'm glad that you enjoyed a shared experience, Bill.  

 

Peace. :)

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I've felt suicidal as both a Christian and non-Christian. As a teenager and dealing with a God-concept that wasn't working out very well, and believing that God hated me, it would have been a path to eternally being separated from God, since I believed that I was headed there anyway. As a Christian, I believed it was wrong to commit the act, but believed that it was okay to feel suicidal, even praying for God to kill me, because there were several people in the Bible who had done that, and it seemed that God was still accepting of them. Since deconverting, I no longer believe in a Bible-God, heaven, hell or after-life, and tend to think in terms that there are still some things left in the future that I would like to witness (my current coping mechanism).

 

So for me, it's not been dependent on my religious beliefs or the lack of them. Both sides of my family had depression, so am supposing that some of it (at least) is hereditary. Then being raised in an environment with a horrible God-concept, finished it off. I tend to think of those who commit suicide as people who were completely broken, and did so, because they believed they were doing themselves and the world a favor by exiting.

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I think the religious taboo against suicide does have impact, but this still appears to be a rather complex issue. Why do physicians have the highest rate of suicide among the professions? Lots of answers there, too, but I'm sure that today many would blame Obamacare; in previous decades it would be due to various other liberal policies instituted by our government. 

 

Back on topic, Christians (I think that's what we're comparing atheists to here) don't want to usurp God's plan and they look forward to the "next" life. Atheists realize this is our one shot at existence, and when it goes irretrievably sour, it's time to call it quits. Atheists generally support physician assisted suicide for the terminally ill while Christians want to preserve the sacred nature of being technically alive as long as possible. Sometimes suicide is the best answer, and Christians aren't known for embracing the best answers. I suspect the argument that atheists are generally more depressed than Christians is false. Depressed Christians just throw themselves deeper into religious psychosis rather than throwing themselves off a bridge.

 

Great post Florduh, many valid points there. I was one of those depressed christians that threw themselves further into psychosis. This seems to 'work' for a lot of depressed christians, and of course the fear of hell is a great motivator.

 

The doctors I have spoken to regarding suicide said that having a strong religious faith has been demonstrated to be a 'protective factor' against suicide. It does not always 'protect' christians though, as many still die by suicide every year. For me, my most serious suicide attempt occurred while I was a christian and since deconverting my mental health has improved significantly, although it certainly didn't cure the PTSD and Mood Disorder I have.

 

As it is commonly believed in christian circles that signs of mental illness are actually demonic attacks or undisciplined thinking, I can imagine many people do go into unreality and pretend to themselves and others that they are fine to avoid being told they are a mentally weak christian, or worse, demonically possessed. When I studied Pastoral Counselling at Bible College there were many students in the wider college who thought counselling to be unchristian, as we had been made 'new creations in christ' so all the bad stuff in our thinking and memories had been washed away...idiots. Although I must say that the Pastoral Counselling was equally useless and damaging.

 

My guess is that the church is a place for mental illnesses to grow and fester as they are not properly acknowledged, or adequately treated. This is covered up by the fact that it is totally acceptable to be a raving lunatic in church, as long as it has a religious flavor to it. But you are trapped in your torment as you are not encouraged to seek proper medical attention, and killing yourself is pretty much a ticket to hell, or an eternal shame in heaven.

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Religion never helped me with suicide or depression at all. If anything, it made my depression worse, since instead of actually dealing with it, I would just trust God to heal everything. I had a particularly emotional time at youth group once a few years ago where I thought I would finally not be sad anymore. I was on an emotional high, having cried my eyes out, and I even posted publicly to facebook that god had done a great thing to me and I would triumphantly not be sad anymore!

 

Not two or three days passes and I felt just the same way as before. I was so ashamed that I actually went back and removed that facebook post.

 

In the end, the Christian worldview never gave me a brighter worldview, especially since it kept on pressing into me just how many people would end up in Hell. (As I've posted here a lot, that is the thought processes that mainly destroyed by Christian faith.)

 

As for suicide, nothing much changed since I left except the motive to not do it. Before, it was out of fear of going to Hell; if I killed myself, surely I would go to Hell. I was totally, totally 100% convinced of that for most of my life. Now, it's that I feel I have too much to offer the world and other people to take myself away so selfishly, and too much that I want to experience before I go. I feel that's a much better motive to not kill myself than simply being petrified from the concept of Hell.

 

Also, awhile ago I did some solid research into this to find that there is no link specifically to Christianity to people being happy. There are some general connections of religion to happiness in some people, but that is completely indiscriminate of religion. There is NOTHING linking Christianity to a happier life. Nothing. If religion makes any difference on that end, Christianity has nothing to claim over any other religion.

 

Also, one more factor to consider is that in many places, Atheists are absolutely hated and/or horrifically misunderstood by religious people. I don't think I need to explain too deeply into that concept in a place like this.

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The suicide rate actually is higher for atheists, not just according to Conservapedia. The reasons for this discrepancy are what's debatable.

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According to the link "Unaffiliated subjects were younger, less often married, less often had children, and had less contact with family members."  Maybe those are the important factors.

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According to the link "Unaffiliated subjects were younger, less often married, less often had children, and had less contact with family members."  Maybe those are the important factors.

 

Perhaps you have a point. A strong sense of community, and a sense of belonging are very important things for good mental health and provide support when things are not so good (at least ideally). Being isolated is a BIG risk factor for suicide too. I really feel for that young man who took his life after de-converting. I have not read his blog (link did not work) but I do know that the only time I was seriously considering suicide after deconverting was in the first few months. As I was already mentally vulnerable the shock of discovering christianity was false, that I had been passionately believing a lie and had based so many crucial decisions on it and lost so much as a result was shattering. That I had run to 'god' for help, believed I was loved and being protected after years of abuse only to find out it was not real was even more devastating.

 

That man must have been deeply effected by the shock that christianity really could not be true. Christians will say he lost contact with god so it all fell apart but I say finding out you have been lied to and believed a lie all your life would be more closer to the trigger. I will say it again, christianity (all monotheistic religions too at least) is a mindfuck. All is well until you take the red pill, sincerely following truth then what you discover can be quite destabilizing for a time. That is why I love this site. It has made the transition from christian to 'spiritual' atheist so much easier. We all need community, and the sense we belong somewhere and this site provides that for exchristians. Thanks guys!! :)

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According to the link "Unaffiliated subjects were younger, less often married, less often had children, and had less contact with family members."  Maybe those are the important factors.

 

Perhaps you have a point. A strong sense of community, and a sense of belonging are very important things for good mental health and provide support when things are not so good (at least ideally). Being isolated is a BIG risk factor for suicide too. I really feel for that young man who took his life after de-converting. I have not read his blog (link did not work) but I do know that the only time I was seriously considering suicide after deconverting was in the first few months. As I was already mentally vulnerable the shock of discovering christianity was false, that I had been passionately believing a lie and had based so many crucial decisions on it and lost so much as a result was shattering. That I had run to 'god' for help, believed I was loved and being protected after years of abuse only to find out it was not real was even more devastating.

 

That man must have been deeply effected by the shock that christianity really could not be true. Christians will say he lost contact with god so it all fell apart but I say finding out you have been lied to and believed a lie all your life would be more closer to the trigger. I will say it again, christianity (all monotheistic religions too at least) is a mindfuck. All is well until you take the red pill, sincerely following truth then what you discover can be quite destabilizing for a time. That is why I love this site. It has made the transition from christian to 'spiritual' atheist so much easier. We all need community, and the sense we belong somewhere and this site provides that for exchristians. Thanks guys!! smile.png

 

 

Yeah, I have felt suicidal as both Christian and non-Christian.  As a Christian, I really think the only thing that kept me from doing myself in was the fear of Hell and my family being in Heaven while I was in Hell. Or that my sisters would think I was in Hell and be stressed about it their entire lives. As a non-Christian, I guess it is just knowing that I have to keep at it and that sometimes it's just my mind playing with me.  I've had therapy and feel much better now but sometimes I still find myself slipping; I was chronically depressed for five years before getting it addressed.  Still, ick. 

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I don't see the issue with suicide rates being higher in Atheists - this makes 100% sense to me. Roman Catholics believe that if you kill yourself you're going to purgatory for a VERY LONG time and many other Christian sects almost teach that you'll go to hell for it since you're "murdering" yourself (kind of like abortion, but it's yourself).

 

Atheists know that once you're dead you are just as aware as you were for the countless eons before you were born. For many, many people on this planet, that reality is much more palatable than living a life of hell on this planet before dying anyway. It's a tough thing to think about but it's reality.

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http://www.conservapedia.com/Atheism_and_suicide

 

 

Not sure if this is the right place to post this but im wondering if anyone has any information about this?

 

Are suicide rates higher for the atheist community because its a SMALLER community?

 

I think Xians are afraid of burning in hell forever if they commit suicide while atheists don't have that fear.

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Religion never helped me with suicide or depression at all. If anything, it made my depression worse, since instead of actually dealing with it, I would just trust God to heal everything.

 

That sounds familiar!

 

Also, as the daughter of a crazy christian mom, I had absorbed some weird ideas about female bodies, a fear of doctors (though my mom did have some legitimately awful ones), and a distrust of birth control, so I was in my mid 20s before I ever saw an obgyn. Turns out I have PMDD, which is a pretty serious medical issue that, for me, has dangerous levels of depression as a symptom.

 

As a christian and an atheist, the two reasons that I never offed myself were apathy (it would have just taken too much effort, and I'd get to the point where I couldn't even bother to stand up) and some animal instinct to not-die. Now that the medical issues are taken care of, I've had enough experience feeling sane to learn better coping mechanisms, so when sad things happen I'm less likely to give up. (With the 2 weeks out of every month that I used to feel awful, I dealt with it by going numb. Once all that calmed down to a more reasonable level of emotions I found that I hadn't had much practice working through situational pain in a healthy manner. So there was a second shock wave as I leaved to face real pain (instead of chemically induced non-situational emotional pain) head on. The nice thing about situational pain is that it makes sense and time heals and working through it actually gets you somewhere.)

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The atheist believes that his life is his his to live - or not.to live. "To be or not to be"  In chronically unhappy the Xtian volunarily  puts himself in eternal hell here on earth.  bill

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