Suicide

The Buddha looked on suicide as he looked on as doing harm to any living being. The living being just happens to be yourself! But the Buddha had great compassion for people who were in such suffering that they contemplated suicide. There are several stories where monks contemplate ending their life, and here is one. The following short story comes from the Theragatha, the collection of poems by the first generations of monks.

For twenty-five years,
In all the time since going forth,
I have found no peace,
Even for an instant.
My mind was never once at ease.
I was plagued by lust.
Weeping, I ran out of my hut.

Should I pick up the razor?
After all, what’s the point?
Should I give up the teaching,
And bring it all to an end?
I picked up the knife and sat down.
But at the moment when I was finally ready,
To slice the vein,
Suddenly I understood,
It all became clear,
I knew in my heart the danger,
And I was truly chastened

My mind was liberated.
I saw the perfection of the dhamma.
I gained the three knowledges,
And realized the Buddha’s teaching.

-Sap­padasa, Theragatha 6.6

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