Suicide: What is wrong with people lately?

Every breath of a human, every moment of his or hers life in all Religious traditions, their teachings, their guidance, their viewpoints, their perspectives is worth more than a priceless gem. These breaths the human being takes in order to survive in life and the moments of life itself are like the pearls of a necklace. Just as a pearl will embellish the appearance of that neck that wears the necklace of pearls, in the same way the life of a individual is enhanced by that person who looks after the moments of his life. No Treasure trove of any Ruler, no Sultanate of any Sultan, no Kingdom of any King, no Rulership of any Queen in tantamount is equal in value to one moment of an individuals life. Life in-fact in numerous places of the Quraan, either directly or indirectly, is described by Allah as a favour on human beings.
In one verse of the Quraan, Allah says,
" How can you disbelieve? Seeing that you were dead and He gave you life. Then He will give you death, then again will bring you to life (on the Day of Resurrection) and then unto Him you will return." (Surah Al-Baqarah Verse 28)

Life in many people’s opinion is a journey. Some even sees it as a pilgrimage. In the Islamic perspective it is a journey far beyond death. It is like a trip around the world. We stop in many different Continents, Countries, Cities, Towns and Villages. Some bring happiness and some give us grief. The white beaches, beautiful rain forests, buildings etc would force a smile on the face of many a person regardless of what grief he is in, but the sight of the poor, war-stricken and weak will give one intense grief. Life is a test from Allah, He tests people in various ways and times. He tests some by blessing them with countless bounties to see if the servant appreciates what he has been blessed with by Allah and he shows gratitude towards Allah for blessing him with these bounties. At times Allah in his infinite wisdom, puts a person in intense grief, to see if the servant turns to Allah and seeks guidance and help.
Excellent examples of both situations are found in the life and story of the Prophet of Allah, Ayyub (AS). Allah granted him many bounties, then he gave him such illness that the people around him could not bear. Prophet Ayyub (AS) turned to Allah for help and Allah in his infinite mercy returned all the past bounties upon him. In some narrations it has been said that Allah gave him more bounties than the amount he had before his illness. In a surah of the Quraan Allah says regarding Prophet Ayyub (AS):"And remember Our slave Ayyub (Job), when he invoked his Lord (saying):"Verily Satan has touched me with distress (by ruining my health) and torment (by ruining my wealth)! (Allah said to him): "Strike the ground with your foot: This is (a spring of) water to wash in, cool and a (refreshing) drink". And We gave him back his family, and along with them the like thereof, as a Mercy from Us, and a Reminder for those who understand."And take in your hand a bundle of thin grass and strike therewith (your wife), and break not your oath. Truly, We found him patient. How excellent a slave! Verily, he was ever oft- returning in repentance (to Us).
Like Prophet Ayyub, each and every one of us is tested by Allah in someway or another. Some turn to Allah and seek help, as in the case of Prophet Ayyub and others turn completely to the opposite side, which leaves many in grief. These people upon whom many grieve and mourn are the people who have turned to suicide.
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The acting chief financial officer of Freddie Mac has been found dead in an apparent suicide, according to local media. Washington's WUSA-TV and WTOP Radio reported that David Kellermann was found dead in his Northern Virginia home Wednesday morning....

These are the news I woke up to this morning. This is the 3rd suicide in the MD-DC-VA region in a matter of days. On Friday, a family of 5 was found dead in Fredericks , MD in what was a murder suicide. Notes were found describing the financial hardships the family was going through. Last Sunday, another family of 4 was found dead in Towson, MD in a hotel room. Again, murder suicide and the cause was thought to be economic hardship. Since the fall of the sub prime markets,the deterioration of our banking systems,the loss of jobs, suicide rates have been skyrocketing. Which begs the question, are poor people mentally stronger than rich people? Are poor people so used to their daily struggles that they accept the way things are. Is it a question of faith? Is faith related to our economic circumstances? Do poor people have more faith than rich people? Is it that simple.... The average person looks for happiness in what this world can deliver. The basic problem is, that this world doesn't have anything, which satisfies the basic foundational spiritual needs of a human. All people are average people, regardless of the amount of material wealth they manage to acquire. And, if they look to their monetary worth as a means of gauging their own ultimate worth, eventually their entire spiritual economy fails, and they jump out the window to try and escape the glaring disappointment, which reality thrusts upon them. In any case, have you ever thought of suicide? Is there any situation that would bring you to take your life away? I wonder if I'd ever have the courage or cowardice to take my life. What thoughts go in a mind of someone as they're taking their life away? Do they think that everything ends with this world? ......

When a person commits suicide, he/she practically declares that he/she does not believe that God knows about his/her sufferings, and if God has knowledge of his/her sufferings,He does not care enough to relieve him/her of these sufferings.
This is why suicide is strictly forbidden in Islam, because it is an affront to God. It is like a person saying to God: “You have given me life and I am taking it away.” This is what is meant by the Hadith in which God is quoted as saying of the one who commits suicide: ''My servant has precipitated My will with regard to himself! Therefore, I am forbidding him entry into heaven''.
If one is thinking of committing suicide he should think about his friends and family, then he should turn to Allah and ask for his help. There is always a way! Do not disregard the life that was given to you. It is a gift and a blessing!

"Be sure We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods, lives, and the fruits of your toil. But give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere. Those who say, when afflicted with calamity, 'To Allah we belong, and to Him is our return.' They are those on whom descend blessings from their Lord, and mercy. They are the ones who receive guidance."


Jamaican Hijabi said...

Assalamu alaikum, good post Sister Hijabee, I heard the news this morning too, its sad when people base their happiness on material things and when they lose them they feel theres nothing left to live for. This economic crisis has certainly brought hardship to many, but Allah has promised after hardship will come ease. I will never understand suicide but maybe he felt such a burden because of the sub-prime mortgage crisis and he did not have faith (or patience either)that things would get better, and that there is something more than just this earthly life. So sad.

Mina said...

Great post, how sad, alot of that has been happening due to the economic crisis according to the media:/

Very sad...but those that have faith all know this is a test from Allah and after hardship there is ease, juz have patience.

Habayeb said...

That's why commiting suicide is a major sin in Islam, since, "On no soul does Allah Place a burden greater than it can bear .."- [Quran 2:286] and its also necessary to have pious friends amongst you who can guide u and help u remember Allah.

Umm Amirah said...

Asalaamu Alaikum Hijabee,
Great post. So true, it is sad. Life is so precious...and some have such a low regard for it. Its a blessing to wake up and breath, to wake up and WAKE UP.
Insha~allah Allah(swt) will comfort the families and invite the innocent into jennah firdose.

Mona said...

It is so sad when things seem so hopeless that people feel that's the only way out. Their families must be so hurt and angry too.

Lisa said...

Assalamu Alaikum.

I truly believe that these people were already battling their inner demons when these economic burdens became the final straw. Rarely is suicide impulsive. More often well planned, possibly for months. And then you couple that with the fact that MOST suicides happen in April and May, it's a recipe for disaster. April and May because people are STRONG enough to take their own lives compared to winter, crazy as it seems dearest sis.

Well of course, I have thought of suicide. My grandmother did it and it's in my genes. But her memory keeps me going. Love you.

Umm Omar said...

What has always struck me about suicide is how helpless and lost someone must feel to take their own life, often times in a gruesome/violent/painful manner-when it's human nature to fear pain and death. I, too, have noticed all the suicide in the news. I even knew a sister who committed suicide last year, and needless to say, it was shocking. Muslims, especially, need to stop being judgmental and start allowing people to talk and feel safe when they do. If societies had stronger support systems for those who suffer emotionally or mentally, perhaps suicide wouldn't be the first option for some people.

hijabee said...

Jamaican Hijabi,
Waleikum Salam . Thank you for your comment. It is sad and he probably did not see a way out. May Allah guide us to always come back to Him in times of need and despairs.

Yes, it is indeed a test from Him, most of us don't pass though coz of our lack of patience.

Having friends and family you can talk to is important. They can guide you when you feel lost and alone.

Diali said...

That is sad. You know, when I was 12, my best friend big sister commited suicide. She left behind a daughter, a husband, sisters and brothers and her mom. I remember it like it was yesterday. I loved her as a big sister and I remember us being so mad at her for being so selfish. I also remember her family feeling so guilty because they missed the signs that she was unhappy, going through some stuff… they felt like they probably could have avoided it if they paid more attention to her. I was very hurt by it and to this day I still feel like she was so selfish. I think that people who commit suicide, they do not think about the people they leave behind.
I also agree with everybody elese that talked about faith. These people also have very little faith in Allah (swt).
I hope He forgives her and grant her jannah inchallah.

hijabee said...

Umm Amirah,
Waleikum Salam. I guess as human beings we tend to forget how precious life is. Which goes back to our tendency of not valuing the things that are given to us for free....

The families must be devastated. The death of a family member is hard enough, but it's harder when the person commits suicide.

hijabee said...

Waleikum Salam. Losing a loved one through suicide must be a traumatic experience and I'm sorry you had to go through this with the death of your grandmother. That being said, I don't think it's in your genes Lisa, if anything, the pain you went through when she did what she did will give you more strength not to take your life away if the opportunity came. I'm sure that thought wouldn't come in your mind if you think of your dear Youssef. I hope God will give you strength not to even think about it. Always talk to your friends or family when you're having dark thoughts or feelings. That will help a lot, communication in times of despair is a good remedy. Love!

hijabee said...

Umm Omar,
True. Sometimes we are so selfish and blind that we don't see that the people around us are suffering. Taking your life away is a desperate act, it is the ultimate cry for help and it is sad that when people finally hear you, it is all but too late!

I am sorry that you went through that. It is really an ordeal to lose someone like this. The family is always left with tons of questions, remorse, guilt. They can't comprehend the actions and desperation of their loved one who took their life. It is a very traumatic experience for the survivors but like you said it is also selfish in a way. Probably people who commit suicide don't think about that part. They think that everything will be over once they push the trigger....

Lisa said...

Mashallah you are so sweet. Youssef definitely keeps me going. And the best gift I've ever been given is the memory of Grandma, that makes me want to live, maybe even more than most people. Love you so very much and thank you for your support sweet sis.

hijabee said...

Love you too! May Allah make it easy for you and Youssef!

Omo Oba said...

Yes, for a few hundred seconds in my short life, I have thought about suicide. Many of us have. Some of us are fortunate to be grounded in the more important things of life, rather than wealth or material possessions. It is the music that an advanced/westernized society has to dance to.

Hajar said...

Suicide entails grief and pain to the people around us.

How is that the poor and impoverished aim to risk everything they have; continuously seeking out ways in order to survive on mother earth while the rich and opulent that had it all choose to give up on life when the going gets tougher?

Even if the world comes crashing down on us and our loved ones abandon us, why do we not turn to the One? The One that governs us, provides sustenance and is capable of alleviating our hardships.

Perplexing ...

Anonymous said...

May Allah protect us all from even contemplating such acts...Ameen.

A few people I have known have committed suicide mostly because of mental illness, which was ignored by their families.

Mental illness is never seen as something real and many people are told to just "get over it." Unlike physical illness, where we can see the effects on the body. But mental illness can be so tortuous and it can be like a painful cancer that just eats away at you and blurs the lines of morals and of reality.

They are so desperate to get rid of the agony that they can envision no other way of relieving their pain.

Of course there is no excuse for suicide, but many parents and relatives turn a blind eye to it. Many people who are suicidal cry out for help and are sometimes ignored, especially in a Muslim family where merely reading the Quran is suggested as the cure. Yes, reading the Quran is great and a great source of solace, but Allah also created medication, counselors and such.

Insh'Allah we can all urge those whom we think are suicidal to seek professional help. Sometimes the task is too big for us to take on all by ourselves.

Sorry for the rant...

Melanie said...

His spiritual bankruptcy was greater than any financial burden he could have had. All he needed to do was realize that being a father to his daughter and a husband to his wife were the richest things that he could provide.

Nomad said...

It is definitely sad that anyone might kill themselves over a loss of money

Silver Ribbon said...

Assalam o ALaikum,

I recently listened to a really amazing lecture on this topic.
I blogged about my thoughts on it too. See video links here:

Travis aka. Samir said...

Really good blog, thought provoking, suicide is 1 of the most selfidh things a person can do. i look forward to reading more from you.

Sacrifice4Allah said...

As Salaamu 'alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatu,

An excellent post dear sister! Suicide whether done by a Muslim or non-Muslim is a sad affair. This life is a test and only the successful ones will pass it inshaAllah.

Nobody wants to go through any sort of hardship but certain circumstances are brought about by Allah's command that we cannot escape. We have to bear our hardships with patience inshaAllah. Sh. 'aidh Al Qarni stated in his book 'Dont Be Sad'(i paraphrase) if we don't be patient then we will be forced to be patient. Those who aren't patient in times of calamity will find that the calamity goes on longer.

Allah has promised 'With hardship there is ease, verily with every hardship is ease.'

“The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: ‘A believer, in all his affairs, is envied whether in times of adversity or in luxury, and this is a special feature for believers only. Whenever a believer wallows in luxury, he thanks Allah, and whenever he faces hardship, he commits himself to patience. In all cases, it is good for him.‘ (Reported by Muslim)”"

May Allah guide us all and help us in being obedient to Him alone. Ameen!

immanent peace said...

salaam sis..

I totally agree with you!

"The basic problem is, that this world doesn't have anything, which satisfies the basic foundational spiritual needs of a human."