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Unread 06-23-2015, 02:23 PM   #16
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As someone who has suffered from depression and lived on that edge, who has felt the flames... I honestly can't say that I know for sure that I support this view that it's a rejection of society &/or the world, but rather a response to the rejection that they feel from the world. It's not that during those times, I wanted to say "f--- the world" it's more of a "F--- me, no matter how I try, nothing I do is worthwhile, and to continue this horrible pain is an injustice to myself and to the world".

It's a feeling that you were never part of the world in the first place.

But apart from my disagreement with Wittgenstein (which I will say is likely out of the fact that he probably never stared suicide in the face), I still don't see an argument as to why this is a bad thing.

I don't think that any doctor would ever approve of Euthanasia unless this person has suffered greatly for long periods of time. And honestly, the slippery slope argument is one I never put much stock into.

Also, Autism can't be fixed. Neither can many cases of bi-polar and/or depression. I'm on pretty strong medication, and while the depression is lessened, it's not gone. It will never go away. It's now more tolerable.

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Unread 06-23-2015, 02:57 PM   #17
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Also, Autism can't be fixed. Neither can many cases of bi-polar and/or depression. I'm on pretty strong medication, and while the depression is lessened, it's not gone. It will never go away. It's now more tolerable.
Yeah, and in many cases, that is a step towards the goal. In essence to turn the flames down and to be moving towards a more full life. BPD can often be controlled to a huge extent. (My mom would be the obvious example in my life.)

In some ways it is learning to live with the depression and in other ways to lighten the load of depression.

I doubt we will see a legalization of euthanasia for mental illness in the US soon. The legal concept of competence precludes being suicidal. That in and of itself presents an issue. Americans do not like to face the reality of death and any informed conversation here should look at death. Also the US is still reeling from the forced sterilization eugenics programs of mental institutions of the last century. WWII I believe put a quash on certain possibilities that will fade in time as the horrors are forgotten. (Eugenics became a dirty topic)

But I doubt you will not see an increase in the cases of euthanasia laws like Oregon's which do have fairly strict guidelines. (However, this is still different than the Netherlands euthanasia laws, though they will turn some down.)

I believe ultimately without a moral code from a deity, the arguments against euthanasia ring fairly hollow. If radical self-determination is a virtue or value of society, (and is accepted in cases where refusal of treatment results in death.) than euthanasia is a logical consequence. In modernity, it feels like a farce to argue against it from a position of modern Western culture alone.
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Unread 06-23-2015, 04:21 PM   #18
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As someone who has suffered from depression and lived on that edge, who has felt the flames... I honestly can't say that I know for sure that I support this view that it's a rejection of society &/or the world, but rather a response to the rejection that they feel from the world. It's not that during those times, I wanted to say "f--- the world" it's more of a "F--- me, no matter how I try, nothing I do is worthwhile, and to continue this horrible pain is an injustice to myself and to the world".
I don't doubt you. And I'm not speaking to the subjective experience of a suicidal person—I simply don't know. Even if I had been suicidal at some point in my life, I wouldn't presume to know exactly what anyone else had felt. All I'm talking about is a logical consequence of affirming the permissibility of suicide, which is distinct from how it feels from the inside. Maybe there are certain exceptions (not sure, it's doubtful I've imagined every single possible contingency) but in most circumstances I can think of a suicide represents a rejection of our moral obligations to others (regardless of what the suicidal person intends) since it requires taking a path which rules out basically every possibility of fulfilling those obligations. If I'm correct this is a huge, possibly insurmountable, ethical problem with taking one's own life.

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But apart from my disagreement with Wittgenstein (which I will say is likely out of the fact that he probably never stared suicide in the face)
Actually he had moments where he contemplated suicide. And two of his brothers killed themselves. So he was well acquainted with the feeling, sadly. I can only speculate but perhaps this is why he wrote about it in the first place. As he's generally better known for his work in logic and the philosophy of language.
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Unread 06-24-2015, 08:47 AM   #19
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I don't doubt you. And I'm not speaking to the subjective experience of a suicidal person—I simply don't know. Even if I had been suicidal at some point in my life, I wouldn't presume to know exactly what anyone else had felt. All I'm talking about is a logical consequence of affirming the permissibility of suicide, which is distinct from how it feels from the inside. Maybe there are certain exceptions (not sure, it's doubtful I've imagined every single possible contingency) but in most circumstances I can think of a suicide represents a rejection of our moral obligations to others (regardless of what the suicidal person intends) since it requires taking a path which rules out basically every possibility of fulfilling those obligations. If I'm correct this is a huge, possibly insurmountable, ethical problem with taking one's own life.



Actually he had moments where he contemplated suicide. And two of his brothers killed themselves. So he was well acquainted with the feeling, sadly. I can only speculate but perhaps this is why he wrote about it in the first place. As he's generally better known for his work in logic and the philosophy of language.
Sure, I should not presume to know how everybody who feels suicidal feels, but almost every person who I've read who talked about their experiences with attempted suicides or want to commit suicides, has said something very similar to what DFW says. So in that, I just can't get behind Wittgenstein. I don't think it's a shirking of duty, at least not for many, it's that they feel like that they're either not cut out for that duty, that their duty isn't worthwhile, or they don't have a real duty... There's nothing worse than feeling useless. Good God don't I know that feeling... bends me to the core. It just doesn't let up and it makes you feel soul crushingly empty, if you even feel like you have a soul to be crushed. When you stare into that hollow in your chest, that's when you feel the flames, that's when it looks so tempting to choose, what looks like, the least painful way out and the quickest end to that pain. I don't think it's a rejection of the world, it's a reaction to being rejected (or a perception of rejection).
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Unread 06-24-2015, 09:06 AM   #20
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Most suicides are ultimately resultant from some degree of mental illness rather than a rational process. As Bill mentions, this gives rise to moments of crisis which are hard to conceptualize as anything other than a medical emergency. Reaching the conclusion of suicide strictly via discursive processes is quite rare, relatively speaking. Though I would suspect that in the case of terminal illness rational decision making is more prevalent.
I know at least two instances (in friends) where suicide attempt was a result of discursive process, though.
a) It wasn't "strictly via discursive processes"
b) Their premises were distorted truths, or incomplete truths

Finally, c) in each instance, attending to their emotional/psychological (and stress-level) concerns (i.e. contingent matters), helped undermine the premises better than re-framing the situation or telling the facts.

Anecdotal, sure. But either you're implicitly telling me my experience is atypcial, or your "quite rare, relatively speaking" needs to be adjusted.
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Unread 06-24-2015, 10:06 AM   #21
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So in that, I just can't get behind Wittgenstein. I don't think it's a shirking of duty, at least not for many, it's that they feel like that they're either not cut out for that duty, that their duty isn't worthwhile, or they don't have a real duty...
I'm making a distinction between their intentions or purported reasons and what their actions would necessarily entail. Of course, it's a valid question whether or not we have such duties to one another.

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I know at least two instances (in friends) where suicide attempt was a result of discursive process, though.
a) It wasn't "strictly via discursive processes"
b) Their premises were distorted truths, or incomplete truths

Finally, c) in each instance, attending to their emotional/psychological (and stress-level) concerns (i.e. contingent matters), helped undermine the premises better than re-framing the situation or telling the facts.

Anecdotal, sure. But either you're implicitly telling me my experience is atypcial, or your "quite rare, relatively speaking" needs to be adjusted.
By "strictly discursive processes" I'm referring to suicide that is not comorbid with mental illness or substance abuse. Or suicide that does not have a significant impulsive component (a crisis).
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Unread 06-24-2015, 10:54 AM   #22
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I'm making a distinction between their intentions or purported reasons and what their actions would necessarily entail. Of course, it's a valid question whether or not we have such duties to one another.
Sure, but what if the person doesn't recognize said duties, even if they exist. Can they be held accountable (in any way you can hold a dead person accountable) if they are unaware?
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Unread 06-24-2015, 11:02 AM   #23
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Sure, but what if the person doesn't recognize said duties, even if they exist. Can they be held accountable (in any way you can hold a dead person accountable) if they are unaware?
Choosing to take one's own life is not the same thing as affirming the moral permissibility of it (which is what I was addressing). They may happen to coincide but the former does not necessarily imply the latter. Particularly when it involves mental illness or extreme desperation of some other kind.
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Unread 06-24-2015, 12:03 PM   #24
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It would be interesting to chart this discussion in regards to the different usages of freedom, and what it means to be 'free' (positive and negative concepts of liberty as distinguished by Isaiah Berlin in the late 50s). Some understandings of liberty would certainly see being coerced into euthanasia while in a depressed state, or having depression being an ongoing state, as being an example of domination. In fact, even not being coerced, but having an illness which causes the faculties to be perverted in certain ways could be seen inn the same light.

And, also, just to note, I am also someone who suffers from depression.


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Unread 06-26-2015, 08:46 AM   #25
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I find it interesting that the scientific community still doesn't agree on the best way to treat depression. I believe much of it to be demonic attack, or the belief that our life is somehow harder than others. I think depression is often the absence of perspective. As someone who has felt the flames and been delivered from the depths I feel that had I gone on medication, I may have just masked the true problem until it grew. This is just my opinion, and will probably cause trouble, but I've been there, and I view things through the lens that there is a supernatural war going on. I also know I sound crazy. I've been on the other side of this conversation.
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Unread 06-26-2015, 08:49 AM   #26
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I'm not pointing at anyone saying taking medicine is a lack of faith. I am saying medicine will often cover the true problem.
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Unread 06-26-2015, 09:20 AM   #27
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I find it interesting that the scientific community still doesn't agree on the best way to treat depression. I believe much of it to be demonic attack, or the belief that our life is somehow harder than others. I think depression is often the absence of perspective. As someone who has felt the flames and been delivered from the depths I feel that had I gone on medication, I may have just masked the true problem until it grew. This is just my opinion, and will probably cause trouble, but I've been there, and I view things through the lens that there is a supernatural war going on. I also know I sound crazy. I've been on the other side of this conversation.
I do think in the majority of cases, while there may not be a total agreement of what treatment may work, there seems to be consensus that depression is due to chemical imbalances or various sorts and degrees.

That doesn't mean ALL that go through depression go through it the same way or with the same stimulus, though (or so I would think...).
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Unread 06-26-2015, 09:21 AM   #28
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I'm not pointing at anyone saying taking medicine is a lack of faith. I am saying medicine will often cover the true problem.
Perhaps a combination of medicine and counseling is the best approach? Personally idk...
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Unread 06-26-2015, 09:48 AM   #29
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It's the lens you view it through. I believe that the chemical imbalance can be consistent with demonic attack. Science shows chemical changes due to prayer. Science has shown chemical and brain activity changes due to meditation. I think it's important to realize medication is relatively new. 50 years from now things will be radically different
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Unread 06-26-2015, 02:59 PM   #30
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I do think in the majority of cases, while there may not be a total agreement of what treatment may work, there seems to be consensus that depression is due to chemical imbalances or various sorts and degrees.

That doesn't mean ALL that go through depression go through it the same way or with the same stimulus, though (or so I would think...).
Another problem is that depression is not very specific. There are numerous known causes, but sometimes they can be tricky to nail down. Also science is still fairly crude with the brain.
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