Over 27,000 Japanese commit suicide

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I was wondering if anyone else heard Paul Harvey News yesterday, in which he said that over 27,000 Japanese (I think the number was 27,102)have committed suicide in the LAST 10 MONTHS due to their rocky economy, the most ever in Japanese history. I was flabbergasted, to say the least. This makes me wonder what will be the response next January in that volatile country, not to mention our own good ol' U.S.A. Any thoughts?


-- jhollander (hollander@ij.net), March 19, 1999


This article came out last November:

Asia's economic crisis spurs suicides


-- @ (@@@.@), March 19, 1999.

Any statistics on how many Japanese off themselves in a normal 10-month span...?

-- just (wondering@about.it), March 19, 1999.


from the above article:

"Many Asian countries do not keep official figures for suicides, but counselors report a huge increase in demand for their services.

During the past six months, the Samaritan Suicide Hotline in Hong Kong logged 56,000 calls -- 15,000 more than it received for all of 1997."

-- @ (@@@.@), March 19, 1999.

Although the cultural taboo against suicide is stronger in western than oriental (if I understand correctly), this whole area is one that concerns me.

Rob has an excellent thread on "Why do you want to live". I think it is an important part of Y2K preparation to prepare emotionally and spiritually as well as physically.

-- Tricia the Canuck (jayles@telusplanet.net), March 19, 1999.

The estimated 30,000 suicides for the FY ending March 31, 1999 will be the highest on record. The previous high was in 1986. The deep influence of Buddhism colors most daily events. How would one quickly explain Buddhism? I'm sure others can do better, but here's my amateur attempt:

No person nor anything made by mankind will last forever. You will die. The glass you are holding will break. It may break today or 5 million years from today, but the glass will break. If you accept this, you will react calmly if the glass breaks in your lifetime. Accept this fate. A calm reaction to events or challenges allows the mind to think clearly. To react with loud emotion is a sign of immaturity. Regardless of how large your ego is, nothing you do will remembered or change the fate of the universe10 billion years from now. You cannot save yourself and you cannot save the earth. You and the earth will not exist someday. Accept this fate and live your life.

-- PNG (png@gol.com), March 19, 1999.

Substitute "seek enlightenment by following the eightfold path (right thought, right speech, right livelihood, right meditation, etc.)" for the more general phrase, "live your life," and you've got it.

Regarding self-destruction: the japanese tradition of doing oneself in when dishonored is more a remnant of the bushido warrior tradition, which while interwoven with buddhist teaching, is quite distinct. Buddhism is not fatalistic. Life is a precious opportunity to achieve liberation, and not to be wasted.


-- Dogen Smith (dogen@trailerpark.com), March 19, 1999.

'Asia's Broken Lives - Middle Class Plunging Back Into Poverty'

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp- srv/inatl/longterm/brokenlives/broken1a.htm

-- (watcher@priv.org), March 19, 1999.

Thanks Dogen. I did take a shortcut at the end. Japan accepts "parts" of everything. Religion (or the lack of persecution for not having one) and portions of everything in the world are adopted and twisted to fit Japan. Japanese have twisted Buddhism to make it "special" for Japanese people. After seven years, I still shake my head everyday at some new twisted common sense I learn here that requires head-splitting concentration to rationalize. Every day...

The power of social pressure was and is overwhelming. A shogun would issue a punishment of death. The condemmed would execute themselves. The shogun would be free of any responsibilty. "I didn't do it, he killed himself."

-- PNG (png@gol.com), March 19, 1999.

100 years from now. All new people.

-- temporal (DocMortar@think.com), March 19, 1999.

Thanks, everyone, for the feedback. This just horrified me; I couldn't help but think of the families left behind and, again, be concerned about the U.S. when/if we face such a huge economic crisis.


-- jeannie (hollander@ij.net), March 20, 1999.

THaT IS the woNDERFuL THinG ABOut amerIca!!!!! WE DOn'T JUSt kiLL OUrseLVes, We taKE OUt evERyoNE WE UsED TO worK WItH FIrsT!!!!! IDIoTS!!!!

-- Dieter (questions@toask.com), March 20, 1999.

All new people. Making the same old mistakes. The y2.1k countdown begins...

-- PNG (png@gol.com), March 20, 1999.

Hey Dieter, how's the diet going? Maybe you should ease off a bit. I think your blood sugar's getting a little low. Have a Twinkie or something.

-- gott (gott@know.now), March 20, 1999.

Just remember this---The main tenet of Buddhism is that you will continually be reborn (reincarnate ) on this Earth and suffer any number of miseries so long as you have all your afflictions and are not enlghtened.Read "The Way To Buddhahood" By Master Yin-shun (Wisdom Publictations) E-mail:info@wisdompubs.org for more info--web site:www.wisdompubs.org

-- Ted Brown (SimplyTed@webtv.net), March 20, 1999.

Sounds like I should buy stock in a Tokyo funerals company. Spike in business could make me some good money!

-- Leo (lchampion@ozemail.com.au), March 20, 1999.

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