Rosicrucian Writings Online

Solving Our Problems by Suicide

By The Imperator
[H. Spencer Lewis]
[From The Rosicrucian Digest July 1932]
NOT long ago I received a cablegram from one of our newer members who had journeyed to a distant point in search of relief from his business worries in this country, and the cablegram merely said, "Am solving my problems by transition."  In other words, he was sending us official word that he was about to commit suicide, and before we could send any word to him he had carried out his threat.  The question naturally arises as to whether he has really done what he anticipated doing or not.
Do we actually solve our problems by suicide?  Looking at the whole matter from a purely logical point of view, we would say that if our problems are of such a nature as are a result of our merely being here on earth, then by bringing an end to our earthly careers we ought to solve the problems or remove them or keep them from bothering us.  But after all is said and done, is it true and is it honest to say that any one of us is having troubles here on earth merely because he is here?  Is it true that in our lives the only error, the only mistake, the only wrong element is the fact that we are living?  If this were so, then suicide would be a logical answer; but it is not so.
I have not investigated this Brother's life completely, for since his transition has occurred there is nothing more that we can do to help him; but certain it is that there was nothing in his problems that warranted him to do what he did do.  I have never yet found in the problems of perhaps a hundred thousand persons who have sought my advice a single case where life itself was the great obstacle.  If we find that a splinter in the finger is the cause of pain and annoyance and prevents us from being happy and carrying on our work in a normal way, we remove the splinter.  If we find that a lame foot is the cause of our inability to go around and do things as we should, we have the lame foot treated; we do not simply cut off the foot, unless that is the only thing that can be done.  If we find that our lack of ability to do the work we want to do is the answer to our troubles, we usually decide to learn how to do what we want to do instead of doing nothing and waiting for some opportunity to do the things we can do.  If we find that poor eyesight is hindering us in accomplishing what we wish to accomplish, we try to remedy the eyesight; we do not feel inclined to commit suicide.  The only thing that could warrant the ending of life would be the fact that life itself was the obstacle and that its mere existence in our bodies was the detrimental factor that held us from achieving success.
Those persons who foolishly believe that this life is all there is to our existence and who believe that after transition there is nothing but one good, glorious sleep of unconsciousness during which we are neither mindful of the present or the past and know nothing of ourselves and our surroundings, represent the type of persons who thinks that suicide will bring relief from all present trials and tribulations.
The Western World religions and the modern creeds are responsible for this belief in a long, unconscious existence after transition.  I can find nothing in such religious or philosophical beliefs that are fascinating enough to compensate for the great detriment of loss of experiences in life.  What is there about the belief in a long sleep or a long period of unconsciousness in the future that is so enticing as to make such a belief more acceptable than the belief in reincarnation?  If I were convinced today or could become convinced at this moment that this life is all there is to life and that after my transition I would go into unconsciousness for an endless period, I would not commit suicide, thereby hurrying myself into that long sleep, but I certainly would become discouraged in my present work and feel that I should give more time to pleasure and the lighter things of life instead of attempting to build a great work or attempting to do something that my common sense tells me I cannot accomplish in fifty or a hundred years.  I would feel that life was cheating me and that I was being deprived of a fair opportunity to accomplish what I want to accomplish.  I would feel that the whole scheme of existence was fraudulent and unfair.  I would feel that it was not right nor kind nor good of God to bring my soul and consciousness into existence and limit me to seventy-five or a hundred years in which to accomplish what my mind can conceive.
As it is, I now feel that what I have accomplished in the past thirty or forty years is but a temporary foundation for a great structure that I wish to establish.  I feel that I am still in the period of apprenticeship and that even another fifty years will see my foundation work barely completed and that upon this I will have to start my first great structure.  The doctrine of reincarnation assures me that transition will be like going to sleep each night in the comfort of my bed and resting for a very brief period before rising again to continue the work where I left it the night before.  I, therefore, go on and plan and create without any sense or idea of permanent interruption or any interruption that will not bring in its wake increased power to continue.
The fact that there is a continuance of consciousness after transition and the fact that we do live again and know ourselves and know our surroundings and remember our experiences on earth are the reasons for our refusal to think of suicide as any solution to our present problems.  We know, first of all, that it is a cowardly act and is like unto the deserter in the army who runs away, or the man who has a yellow streak in him and who hides from the troubles he could easily master.  I know furthermore that the life I have is not something that belongs to me, but to God; and, therefore, I have no right to wilfully bring about change in the expression of that life.  And I know furthermore that any destructive or unkind thing done against my physical body or the physical body of anyone else will bring Karmic regrets and lifelong suffering and regret on the part of those that I leave behind me.
I know that because I will be conscious after transition, I will live a life of torture, self-inflicted.  I will live for years in constant regret of what I did.  I will be more nervous, more fearful, more unhappy and more miserable than I ever was here on earth, and for that reason suicide cannot attract my attention.
During the recent period of depression many have been tempted to commit suicide, and in each and every case I have found that not one of these persons understood the real principles of life, and not one of these persons had any faith in the future existence beyond the grave of this life.  The real Rosicrucian, however, and the mystic knows that more torture, more sins to compensate for, more obstacles to overcome, more hours of regret and suffering are brought into the life through suicide than are ever released from our present lives by the taking of life.

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