Suicide is Invisible (TDP #385)

Suicidal Thought, Blaming Religion, and more, on this weeks episode of The Distracted Philosopher.

“WARNING: there is a video of me naked circulating Facebook. This is NOT a virus. This is the real thing. DO NOT click on the link or attempt to view the video. You will never be able to scrub the images out of your brain! Please share this warning with others. We can stop this now if we all work together. Or maybe I could just stop posting the videos.” – The Distracted Philosopher

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I’m Regis Jack, and from the day I was born I’ve wanted to die. Well, maybe not the DAY I was born, but as least as far back as I can remember. It’s not because my life has been bad — it’s actually the opposite — I’ve lead a good life. A great life in fact. I have family, loved ones, shelter, food, a career, hobbies, and lots of unnecessary stuff. But my quality of life has no bearing whatsoever on why I want to die. It’s all inside my head. It’s about how I think and how I feel.

And some of you are probably asking, “So, how DO you feel?”

I’m happy. That’s how I feel. I’m a happy guy. Maybe not ALL the time, but most of the time. Other times, well, dark, depressing, sad, suicidal. But who doesn’t feel like that at one time or another? I mean, everybody does, right? Of course that doesn’t mean everyone feels dark, depressing, sad, and suicidal in the same way. Far from it.

Some people just feel sad for a brief period of time, then move on (I call these people “lucky bastards”)

Some people feel this darkness, sadness, depression, suicidal thoughts for short periods of time and it’s not a big deal; maybe they cry in their car for a while, feel better then continue on with their life as if nothing happened; at least until it happens again

Some people are driven by the darkness, driven by the depression, driven by the sadness, driven by the suicidal thoughts; some people know that’s what’s driving them and controlling them — others are not so lucky as they are absorbed and controlled by it

Some people dive in the darkness, embrace the depression, sadness, and suicidal thoughts, dig deep into them, become friends with them, accept them as normal

And some people spend their entire existence within darkness, depression, sadness, and suicidal thoughts — not knowing any other way of life

I dive into it. I embrace the darkness, the sadness, the depression, the suicidal thought as if they are the only way of life. I’d say I actually enjoy those dark, depressing times. Sounds absurd doesn’t it? But it’s true. I find solace in my depression. It’s warm embrace can protect and suffocate me at the same time. It’s just like feeling happy, only not. Some times these feelings are a small part of my life, some times a much larger part, and a few times (including a few consecutive years) it was my entire existence.

When I’m deep in my depression I write. My creativity is fueled by my emotions, positive and negative, but I’ve always felt that depression served as a great emotional basis for writing (as have other writers who used their depression along with drugs and alcohol to enhance it). During these times my words are not just made up fictional stories, they are my feelings — emotional parts of me. They are me.

When I’m depressed, I know I’m depressed. It’s not a secret. It’s not hiding, waiting to jump out at me. I know it. I feel it. But just because I know it and recognize it, doesn’t mean I can change it or fix it or even reach out for help. I’m aware, but not necessarily in control.

And while there is turmoil on the inside, on the outside I appear happy and calm — normal (what ever that means). Previously I’ve talked / written about how I have panic attacks and when they hit me hard, no one else can tell. On the inside I’m screaming, crying, yelling, running away … dying; but on the outside I’m calm and cool as my friends can confirm — they would never have know if I would not have told them (and asked them to help).

Darkness, depression, sadness, or suicidal thoughts are not always something you can see even when they are right in front of you. When you see me next, look into my eyes. Can you see it? Do you think I’m joking about this or looking for sympathy? I’m not. I don’t care what you think about me. I do care that you understand that depression, sadness, darkness, suicidal thoughts are not outliers of our society. They are common. They are every where. There are every one. And they are invisible.

When someone is drowning, they are quiet, calm, and trying to stay afloat — they know they are downing but can’t call out for help — they are NOT thrashing about, splashing, yelling, and screaming like people expect. The same goes for someone who is suicidal or contemplating suicide, they can appear normal, quiet, calm. They are not yelling for help. They can’t.

This is what so many people don’t understand. People still think that suicide only happens to someone whose life is going really bad — which is a big NOPE. It does happen when life is bad, like when you lose your job, suffer a relationship break, or lose a loved one or family member. But it also happens when everything in life appears to be great, when you are happy and content.

And this shouldn’t be a shock to people. Doesn’t everyone spend a few minutes, or hours, or days, or weeks, or more being sad over things? Doesn’t everyone feel depressed now and again? The answer is YES, even if you say no. There is no shame in these feelings. There are a part of ourselves — just a part — they are not our whole being (even if it feels like it sometimes).

When someone kills themselves, it is not a selfish act. It is not them giving up. It is not a cowards way out. Those are horrible things to say. Inside of us is an internal struggle that we are not equipped to deal with, and no one is walking around with a quick answer or solution, so we go off the deep and and go to extremes because we can’t face what’s inside. We are afraid of what the world sees when it looks at us. We are afraid of the conflict within ourselves. This fear makes us to some pretty awful things, like excessive alcohol or drugs (prescription and illegal).

But at the same time suicidal people are doing comedy, creating music, writing, making art, doing podcasts, and some people just go about their normal every lives as if nothing is wrong.

It’s interesting when you look at some of the medications that are prescribed to people with depression — many have a side effect of suicidal thoughts. Think about that. Suicidal thought are the side effect from a drug that is supposed to make you less depressed (aka happier). Why is this? Because you can be happy and have suicidal thoughts. Happy does not mean you are not depressed.

Depression, darkness, sadness, and suicidal thoughts — they are all exactly like being happy — only different. I know that may be hard for you to understand but I can’t think of a better way to put it.

So when you hear of a celebrity that committed suicide like Robin Williams, Marlyn Monroe, Kurt Cobain, Mindy McCready, Jonathan Brandis, Sawyer Sweeten, Jovan Belcher, Alexander McQueen, Lucy Gordon, Johnny Lewis, Gia Allemand, Dana Plato, Chris Benoit, Misty Upham, Ernest Hemingway, Hunter S. Thompson, Simone Battle, Vincent Van Gogh, Christine Chubbuck, Lee Thompson Young, Sylvia Plath, Aaron Swartz, Virginia Woolf, Tony Scott, Don Cornelius, Michael Hutchence, Freddy E, David Foster Wallace, Freddie Prinze, Diane Arbus, Terry Kath, Reinaldo Arenas, James Whale, Assia Wevill, Hart Crane, Wendy O. Williams, L’Wren Scott, Michael Alfonso, Alan Turing, Socrates, Sid Vicious, Herve Villechaize, Ray Combs, Simon Brint, Paul McCullough, Richard Jeni, Charles Rocket, Joshua Andrew Koenig, Chris Cornell, or any of the hundreds of celebrities I haven’t mentioned — please realize these people did not quit or give up. They cared for people, loved people, entertained people, but inside was a different story. The same goes of the rest of us. Everyone. Every. Single. Person.

If you are having suicidal thoughts and need to talk to someone and you don’t want to talk with any friends or family, then please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 24 hours a day. They will talk with you. They will listen. They will not judge. If you don’t want to talk, but like to do an online chat, they do that too just Google “suicide” and you’ll find it.

You are not alone. There are many like us. Don’t fight it alone. Even Batman needed help. Be like Batman.

You can find links to all the distractions from the show (and some not in the show) on my twitter feed @regisjack.

Read guest philosopher Mykl’s blog Rhetoric of The Idle Mind

Watch Aurelio Voltaire’s Gothic Homemaking And Other Stuff

Visit The Distracted Philosopher dot COM for this episode, other episodes, blogs, and other stuff.

This is episode s10e20(385) for Monday, May 22, 2017 and clocked in at 24 minutes, 33 seconds

Right On Schedule

From what I can tell, I publish a book about every 10 years, giving me until 2023 to complete my next one. My biggest hurdle has been how to publish. More options are available than there was the last 2 times I published (and I’ll always have free copies on my site), so hopefully that won’t be an issue this time.

Just letting you know.

Lightsabers of Eden (TDP #384)

Translating beliefs, Loyalty (with Mykl), nudity, candy, and more, on this weeks episode of The Distracted Philosopher.

“I was born with a chaotic mind and the thought of Eternal Life is terrifying to me. Being me for eternity? Thousands of years. Millions of years? Billions of years? If I’m given the choice of living forever or just ceasing to exist — I’ll choose the latter every time.” – The Distracted Philosopher

A post shared by Regis Jack (@regisjack) on

FYI – not a biblical or religious expert – just observing and attempting to learn.

There are about 2200 words (give or take) in Genesis chapters 1,2, and 3 (much less words in the original Hebrew) which covers Creation, Creation again, and the Fall of Humans (in the KJV). Twenty-two hundred words — that’s a very short story — for some pretty BIG stuff.

What we read is translated (unless you read the original Hebrew). So of those 2200 words, NONE of those are the original words (or almost none – I’m not an expert). These 2200 words are English words that have been translated through, what I would call, an extensive scientific method (basically, translated, peer reviewed, others translated, peer review, double blind translations, etc). I’m saying an IMMENSE amount of work went into these translations.

But if you change a word, it can change the meaning. Can anyone understand the true meaning? And what does true meaning even mean?

Maybe it’s allegorical?

Do the details have to be exact for you to continue to have faith? Could you still have faith if it was proven these are not about physical people or places? Or if just a portion of it was not physical?

Is Eden a physical place on Earth? Does it have to be? What if it’s another dimension? Are we every really going to find an Angel with a flaming sword (aka lightsaber) protecting the entrance?

Religions have bad reputations because there are so many variations on what biblical text means or what God means that it seems like no one knows or understands any of it. Some of it’s strong with hate, some strong with fear, some strong with love — and different people can get each of those from the EXACT SAME TEXT.

Some say marriage is between and one man and one woman – but the Bible has passages that clearly show variations, including one man and several women. Some say gays are horrible and evil, others show them love and compassion – from the same faith and bible.

Some say the King James Version is the ONLY true version of the Bible (I’ve heard that myself in church) and that’s absurd because it’s title has the word VERSION in it. And technically the ONLY non-version is the original Hebrew (for the Old Testament).

My point this week is —

There are people of faith, devot followers of their religion, people who love their God and are not bothered by any of the things I have said today — and I’m jealous of those people. Because they are happy and sure of their place in life, death, and after life.

I’m not like that, and I don’t believe I ever could be. I’m not making fun of religions and their gods simply because of different interpretations — I’m truly trying to understand it all. I’m not saying I don’t believe in something greater than the entire universe and infinity, but I don’t believe in the God of the people.

Is it possible for all Christians to agree on a single meaning? Or any religion? Obviously Jews and Christians won’t agree on everything — that whole Jesus thing seems to be a deal breaker. Or is all this nitpicking even important? Is there a single unified message we can follow?

My motto is, “Be cool and groovy to each other” — can we all just agree on that?

You can find links to all the distractions from the show (and some not in the show) on my twitter feed @regisjack.

Read guest philosopher Mykl’s blog Rhetoric of The Idle Mind

Watch Aurelio Voltaire’s Gothic Homemaking And Other Stuff

Visit The Distracted Philosopher dot COM for this episode, other episodes, blogs, and other stuff.

This is episode s10e19(384) for Monday, May 15, 2017 and clocked in at 32 minutes, 22 seconds