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MISC-----suicide and olam haba

mevaseret Posted - 28 August 2000 14:12

Before you go checking that you're only eating chalav israel, or that you're only listening to Jewish music, make sure you're not denigrating your body. that's all I have to say.

Rationalize it all you want, tell yourselves I have a holier than thou attitude or that I’m on another level. I'm just telling it like it is. I know it's hard, I know the pressures, but that's what life is all about.

MODERATOR Posted - 28 August 2000 17:30

Anorexics and cutters, whoever they are and why-ever they do it, are still Jews and loved by Hashem. Keeping the Mitzvos will only help them not hurt them. It’s the Yetzer Horah that says, "Well, if you cut yourself then why bother with cholov yisroel?". It's like saying "You cut yourself so why bother putting on a coat in the winter?" There's no logic in that, it's just an irrational Yetzer Horah. More irrational even, than the cutting itself, for there is no gain, real or twisted, from going down in your spiritual level.

mevaseret Posted - 29 August 2000 13:06

Moderator- how can you say that? Suicide is one of the worst sins according to Judaism. all I am saying is that a person must have priorities. the underlying precept for mitzvot are "vechai bahem."

MODERATOR Posted - 29 August 2000 13:35

Nobody said suicide isn't one of the "worst sins."

But that's only if you willingly decide to kill yourself. The Chasam Sofer writes that even in a case of black and white suicide, if it can be established that the victim did it out of pressure such that it cannot be considered a rational, willing, and clearheaded decision to kill himself, he cannot be considered as committing that terrible sin.

And that's when someone kills themselves. Here we're talking about cutting which is not suicide, and anorexia, which is a very very very difficult thing to control. The doctors consider it a disease.

But never mind all this, even someone who commits suicide still has to keep Shabbos, kashrus, and yes, cholov yisroel, too. Torah is not "all or nothing". Just because the Yetzer Horah wins in one area of your life does not give you a permit to surrender in other areas as well.

Punims Posted - 01 September 2000 5:42

um if somebody commits suicide, they don’t really have to keep anything, they're dead.

MODERATOR Posted - 01 September 2000 21:26

Yes, but if he kept the other Mitzvos when he was alive, it was a zechus for him.

Chani Posted - 01 September 2000 22:58

A zechus for what??? I thought one who commits suicide is not buried in a Jewish cemetery and doesn't get olam habah.

smilehi41 Posted - 03 September 2000 7:39

This is all crazy!!! all maswhatever is trying to say (I think) is that you shouldn't hurt your body - physically or emotionally - just because you have the whole stupid messed up world telling you to... I totally agree - it's crazy to live by what the world does and get pressured in to something that the 'world' is telling you to do.

I mean look at the WORLD - it is so messed up and crazy the way the respond to things the morality or lack thereof in this American culture - look at their role models - and I hate to use the same example everyone does but it fits in with the discussion - look at the President of the United States...he seems to be a good president and run the country well but look at his morality - why would someone want to be like him?????!!!!!??? The whole world knows about his SEX LIFE!!!! What the heck???? Is this the person we want to be like???

I don't think I am any better or 'holier' then anyone else looking at this, I am not writing this to mussar anyone - especially if they don't want it - I am just saying to look at those people who are considered great, successful, looked up to, or honored in this world - I personally would not want to be like any of them - I'm waiting for Mashiach to come so we could all be looking up to the chachamim and everyone will know who is great and who is not and who you should look up to and want to emulate and who you should not look up to and want to emulate.

Today's American culture, the one that is pressuring you into being anorexic, cut yourself, commit suicide or do whatever other stupid thing you could do to yourself, is in itself not a culture that you should want to be like - just look at them - THEIR YOUR ANSWER!!!!!

MODERATOR Posted - 03 September 2000 8:10

Whether people who commit suicide lose their chelek in Olam Habah is a good question. It's common knowledge but it really doesn't say that anywhere. Meforshim try to derive it from other, indirect places. So let's say it's true. But regardless, that doesn't mean they do not get rewarded for their Mitzvos. Chazal say Hashem does not withhold reward from any creatures for their Mitzvos.

Chani Posted - 03 September 2000 15:44

if we're going along that line, that one who commits suicide does not get olem habah, then I guess the reward your talking about has to be in this world. but what if one doesn't get his full reward here, what happens? what kind of reward can a person get if he doesn't get olem habah?!?

It's interesting that you note that this fact of not getting olem habah is common knowledge but not actually written out b/c I was under the impression that was it was written in black and white although I had never seen the source. can you tell me though what the indirect source is? thanx

MODERATOR Posted - 03 September 2000 21:37

It's kinda weird to say Hashem will give the suicide victim his reward in Olam Hazeh because he committed suicide, since by the time he committed suicide and deserves to get his reward only in this world, he's not in the world anymore to get his reward.

Rashi, on the Mishna "All Jews have a share in Olam Habah . . . except the following, which do not have a share in Olam Habah . . . " says that Olam Habah means the Resurrection of the Dead. In fact, the phrase "Olam Habah" in our classic writings means the world of moshiach and Techiyas Hameisim, as opposed to what we refer today as Olam Habah, the world that you temporarily go to when you die, before you are resurrected. That is mostly called Olam HaNeshomos.

So anyone who loses their share in Olam Habah can get their reward after they die in the Olam Haneshomos, but they will not be around for Techiyas Hameisim, when the ultimate reward is dispensed to those deserving of it.

As far as the source, In the responsa Mahari Asad (see # 245) in the notes from his son, he writes that he thinks his father derived it from a Gemora in Avodah Zara:

When R. Chnina b. Teradyon was being burned alive by the Romans for the crime of learning Torah, he asked "Am I going to Olam Habah?".

Now why would he be doubtful of that? Answers the Marari Asad, that since he learned Torah when doing so could get him killed, he was worried perhaps he lost his share in Olam Habah for doing so.

To wit: If you kill yourself you lose your share in Olam Habah.

He also adds a derivation from the Gemora that someone who follows behind a woman by the river (not tzniusdik) loses his share in Olam Habah, even though the Gemora also says that someone who sleeps with a married woman sins but still retains his share in Olam Habah.

To reconcile this, you must say that its not following the woman itself that makes you forfeit olam habah, its the fact that you did it by a river, which is a dangerous place. And doing a sin in a dangerous place can be lethal, since the Satan always tries to prosecute a person when he is in a place of danger.

So the reason you lose your share in Olam Habah is not because of the woman but because you put yourself in deadly danger.

To wit: If you kill yourself you lose your share in Olam Habah.

But bottom line, the Marhari Asad rules that someone who evidence indicates that he killed himself can have Yizkor said for him, since (a) we judge him favorably, and (b) derivations notwithstanding, it says nowhere openly in Chazal that someone who kills himself loses his Olam Habah.

Also, we have the Chasam Sofer who points out that someone who kills himself may do so because of pain and duress, in which case killing himself is not a level headed decision, and he is not considered a murderer.

Me Posted - 04 September 2000 6:08

I know this probably sounds stupid, but when ppl killed themselves al kiddush Hashem was that in this topic of "suicide" also in the holocaust many ppl killed them selves rather than letting the goyim kill them well was that suicide and do the same things about olam haba apply?

Shira613 Posted - 04 September 2000 17:31

yea ME that’s sort of like Yehorag Vial Yaver.

That’s slightly different because there its a question of letting yourself be killed and not doing any of the 3 things that you are not allowed to do if you are forced to do, Idolatry, Sexual Immorality (those that would be chayiv misa , maybe karas too not sure) and Murder.

In the cases of the holocaust first of all I don’t think anyone has any right to judge them. even if you feel it was halachicly wrong and second It seems to me in many cases it was a big kiddish hashem, when they were going to be raped or killed by the nazis...they didn’t let the nazis kill them. (of course if there was any chance of them escaping I might disagree but it seems that there was no chance.)

MODERATOR Posted - 04 September 2000 20:02

The Tur writes that anyone who commits suicide under unusually pressurized circumstances is not considered a suicide, such as King Shaul.

The Chasam Sofer (YD 326) writes that if someone commits suicide under emotional pressure he is not considered as if he purposefully committed suicide.

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