The issue and role of suicide in existential

Psychotherapy, Suicide

Suicide is actually a phenomenon which enables hearts contest and confronts flush with heightened emotions. It is sarcastic how the selection of ending existence spurs feelings within our physiques that remind us what feels like to get alive. Being someone who has considered suicide several times in my life and attempted to talk about it to the people around me, I have viewed first-hand the various reactions that this brings. Costly extremely powerful theme of discussion that invites everybody to examine each of our existence and understand what life means to us. And yet, information and research on suicide are almost always focused on stating the rising charge of suicides in different parts of the world, the most common risk factors t the act, raising awareness for committing suicide attempt cctv surveillance and modelling techniques for committing suicide prevention. When these can be commendable methods of analysing and responding to suicidal tendencies, it does not dive in to the meaning of suicide to human experience.

From this essay, I would really prefer to carry out an existential analysis of suicidal thoughts and actions throughout the four universal concerns of existence: death, freedom, seclusion, and meaning(lessness) as explained by Irvin D. Yalom in his publication Existential Psychiatric therapy. I make an effort to highlight the therapeutic benefit of exploring suicidal traits to take a step towards lifting the judgment surrounding the situation.

Existential Issues Suicide


Loss of life is a assurance of human being experience. There will come a point of your time when our individual existence will cease to exist. While we all know this, the uncertainty inside the ‘how’ and ‘when’ death will find us is a matter that frequently grinds at the back of our minds. Existentially, “death is a esencial source of anxiety” (Yalom, 1980: 29). And so, it may be organic that human beings find a way to rid themselves of that stress. Suicide is seen as an individual’s attempt to conquer their fear of the doubt surrounding fatality and choosing to gain control of the final steps of their existence. This is telling through the newest World Overall health Organization statement stating that suicide rates are maximum among the older (70+) in numerous regions of the earth. Death can bring awareness to the natural weeknesses to our biology that makes all of us feel defenceless and poor. With this view, the act of suicide may be an active tv show of strength. It can possibly be possible that individuals who consider suicide see death while temporary based upon their philosophy and comprehension of life (Yalom, 1980). During these instances, it would be critical to shell out time checking out their comprehension of mind, physique, and heart to discover the objective they may be aiming to achieve by simply suicide.

Alternatively, close encounters with death can also intensify persons will and purpose to have through a major shift inside their perspective. Research on palliative and the hospice care specialists found that folks found all their work supplied them an opportunity to explore this is of lifestyle and reflect on their own mortality helping all of them learn how to live in the present and stay curious about the continuity of lifestyle (Sinclair, 2011). This may end up being evident in the tales of several suicide strive survivors where their thoughts about life have shifted positively following the connection with dying (Yalom, 1980).


Paraphrasing translations of Schopenhauer and Sartre respectively, the universal concern of liberty can be concisely, pithily stated as the situation between ‘Man can perform what he wills but he are not able to will what he wills’ and ‘Man is condemned to be free’. I believe those two quotes portray that though we have a freedom of preference regarding the actions and words, we are thrown in to this presence subject to the natural laws from the universe that may be outside our comprehension. Even as we live with this kind of ability to produce our selections and are responsible for them, were also grappled with the hefty weight of creating meaning of your own experience. This can be a alternatively overwhelming actuality to accept bringing about individuals feeling insecure or perhaps inadequately equipped to face lifestyle. Globally, committing suicide is reported to be the second leading cause of deaths amongst teenagers and young adults (15-29 years) based on the World Well being Organisation (2014). This may be caused by the fact why these are the phases of lifestyle when a large large number of decisions to be manufactured that would influence on and condition the rest with their lives.

The have trouble with the concept of independence may also be the reason for the highest volume of suicides in Europe and South East Asia (World Health Corporation, 2018). A great existential hunt for freedom within the two civilizations might remove important variations in the two experiences of suicide. While the individualistic European society may put undue pressure on their people for creating their own meaning in life, the collectivist attitudes of South East Asian neighborhoods exert pressure by improving traditional principles and structures on their people. Hence, to know suicidal thoughts and tendencies it is vital to search through an individual’s experience of their presence rather than analysing global or perhaps regional quantitative data sets to come upon generalised conclusions.


In the middle of difficult instances, loneliness and isolation is something that is commonly experienced simply by everyone. Yet , existentially, the concept of isolation is concerned with the reality that an person is limited to their embodied self: created alone, live alone and die by itself. Even while becoming fully-immersed in every area of your life and continual by rewarding relationships with others around them, humans will be bound by the fact that that they alone happen to be experiencing their particular existence and there will never be any person around them that could have exactly the same experience because they do. Being a human civilization, we continuously live within a group or perhaps family be it governed simply by our inherited genes, geography, career, religious beliefs or even personal interests. This serves as a consistent buffer within the sense of anxiety that overcomes us at the acknowledgment of existential seclusion. And so, when this protecting layer is shattered for just about any reason at all, individuals could find themselves incapable of finding meaning in their living without the meaning of their group. This isolation can challenge their belief systems and suicide is actually a way in which that they attempt to shield the view they will hold regarding themselves as part of something. Often, suicide is also an attempt of calling awareness of their existence for a anxiety about being overlooked or depending on a belief that they could live through the consciousness of another only by being recalled (Yalom, 1980).

The dilemmas due to the existential concerns of death and freedom could also lead to a sense of isolation intended for “dying is considered the most lonely man experience” and carrying the obligation of one’s personal existence would bring a deep loneliness once faced with hard or sometimes trivial selections (Yalom, 80: 356). Consequently, the problem of isolation is definitely multifaceted. Generally, it is usually thought to be a symptom or perhaps consequence of mental illnesses. While there will be research and several studies within the impact of social panic and major depression on thoughts of suicide that target the issues of loneliness in today’s world, there is a larger give attention to interpersonal isolation that may be cured through group support or perhaps fostering healthier relationships. An existential hunt for an individual’s knowledge of loneliness could help garner a deeper reference to ones’ home.


The look for meaning in an existence which in turn we are chucked into, the one that we create for ourselves through the selections we are responsible for and could cease without each of our explicit control is a confusing ordeal. And this is the primary of man experience ” finding meaning without a common goal in view. Within the human being world, a subject derives the meaning at its conception. When we do not know the intricate details that formed the start of lifestyle, how do we understand its meaning? Throughout history, humans include found a number of ways of making sense of their existence of which philosophy is usually part. If meaning is located through spirituality, objectivity and rationality, power and control or even through mere observation, humans make use of their existed experience to harness some meaning to the meaningless presence they are ruined to. Music artists across centuries have attemptedto make sense of life in unique techniques and it is interesting to note that creative work almost always obstacle meanings made by those that came before them. In a way, suicide is much exactly like it can be seen as an way to install a cement meaning to a individual’s your life. Sometimes a person could have the good belief they own fulfilled the goal of their presence and would like to maintain their were living experience since it is, so finishing their lives would give these people assurance the meaning of their existence won’t not modify through additional experience. Also, it could be the inverse, where a person queries the purpose of their life and finds zero reason to settle alive.

Nietzsche was of the judgment that the consideration of suicide is necessary for one to take your life seriously (Yalom, 1980). Within a translation of his work, Beyond Great and Wicked (1998: 70), it is stated: “The thought of suicide is a highly effective solace: by using it one particular gets through many a poor night”. At this time, I think this individual means that a chance to choose to end ones’ lifestyle can provide us with the power to face the challenges that contain the possibility of disregarding us down. While for a few it may act as a peace of mind that when all else fails additionally, they hold the choice to end their lives, for others it could be a source of meaning to foundation the rest of their life. Thoughts of suicide can be used in an effort to uncover what they value the majority of so as to declare responsibility because of their actions. In my opinion to consider the experience of nonexistence involves a separate comprehension of what it means to become alive.

Suicide: A response to the absurdity of existence

An combinations of the four existential concerns: death, freedom, isolation and meaning(lessness) qualified prospects a philosophical thinker to consider the absurdity of human living. In The Knowledge of Your life, Schopenhauer (1902: 15) identifies a spectrum of reasons for suicidal tendencies that he believes could range from “morbid intensification of innate gloom” to “entirely objective grounds to put a finish to [.. ] existence”. Both these serious positions happen to be held as being a response to the anxieties in the lived experience caused by the paradoxes covered within the individual experience while discussed previously mentioned.

Albert Camus (1955: 3), in the introduction to The Myth of Sisyphus, states: “There is although one genuinely serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Judging whether a lot more or is not really worth living quantities to giving an answer to the fundamental issue of philosophy. ” The things i believe is highlighted through Camus’ function is the fact that contemplating committing suicide is certainly not unnatural or absurd. However it is the work of committing suicide that pulls into it the absurdity. In his essay, Camus explores the relationship between the suicidal thought as well as the individual going through it sketching a differentiation between the work and the thought itself. Whilst a person may be seeking a sense of personal strength through the taking once life thought, this individual points out the act in itself reduces the feeling to nothingness as anybody would just cease to exist as well as the meaning or perhaps control they aim for can be lost.

In Research in Pessimism, Schopenhauer (1902: 404) proves his part ‘On Suicide’ by comparing it to “a clumsy experiment” concerning “the damage of the very intelligence which places the question and awaits the answer”. This, I believe, is the key to area code the therapeutic value of exploring suicidal thoughts and endeavors. It is this kind of paradox organised within the notion of suicide that plays the most important role in existential remedy. Suicide, much like every other aspect of presence, has an innate dilemma within it that demands acknowledgment and acknowledgement. But more importantly, it isn’t suicide itself that requires discussion or perhaps intervention. An open, honest exploration of an individuals’ understanding of lifestyle and loss of life would inspire individuals to philosophize on the perplexities of living rather than assigning suicide by succumbing to its stresses. With this kind of view, the void of suicide basically one that needs a solution or possibly a framework to assist those with these tendencies but something that allows us take hold of the reality of human experience.

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