On Suicide and Consciousness

Edge of the Milky Way, Pemberton, BC - by  Abhimanyu

I am weird – I know that. My main goal in life is consciousness, translated on the street as a moment to moment remembering of my divinity. So when something out of the ordinary happens, I appreciate being able to mine it for the gold of awareness based on this fact:

Each and everyone of us is the Divine Incarnate, walking the earth, playing with limits and boundaries, space and time. ~ The Guys

That is a big mouthful of words, though it represents an even bigger idea. It is what I have been blogging about here, since 2004, and exploring in my life since 1993. So enough of the runway – let’s lift off, starting with a post I left on Facebook a few days ago:

I learned tonight about a precious colleague of mine who committed suicide last month. Her husband wrote the most loving and enlightened post to her memory. There were two key parts in which he was describing some of the back story, and the words he used were so powerful that I want to share them.

“The story I had told myself is that …” followed by “The story that Jen told herself is that…”

The stories we tell are reflections of so many things. They are true, but only partially. Any one person is so much bigger, deeper, just MORE than any one story could begin to encompass. And yet, one story can muster enormous power to affect one or many lives. Tonight I ask for the simple (if not easy) ability to remember not to give myself away to any story and instead to just let anything be possible.

The comments have been so loving and kind. Yet for me, there is a bigger point that I want to voice:

There is nothing inherently wrong with suicide.

This idea springs from my belief of our individual divinity. We have nowhere to go after death, except back to the divine nothingness from whence we came. There is no lord lording over us, controlling us or measuring us. We owe our lives to no one, here or there. This place called earth is a playground. So even if a story was made up, and it may or not be “true” depending on your perspective, there can be no right or wrong stories as they too are part of the game.

For me, understanding the energy that travels with the stories I make up is another touchpoint for consciousness. The stories are often generated by our kid selves; I find The Work of Byron Katie to be very useful in deflating the stories that do not support my happiness and freedom.

Another really useful way to think about stories I learned from The Guys. I use it to expose “kid thinking” when it shows up:

Making up stories.
Pretending they’re true.
Having feelings about them.
Acting on those feelings.

You can see how easily a chain reaction can get started, that can lead to a mess to be cleaned up. I want to repeat though, even messes are not “bad.” They are just messes. The sooner I get off my case when I’ve made one, the faster my confidence returns and the less spillover there is into other areas of my life.

It is often said that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. The so-called problem may be coming from the stories. But no matter, my main point in writing today is that as painful and shocking as it may be, it is still OK.

Sorting the Metaphysical from the Psychological

This big picture belief in divinity is how I approach my life on the metaphysical plane or perspective. From here, I and you are 100% safe and everything we experience is this game we consciously chose to play. It gives me great comfort and cover when events land in my life that cause pain, confusion, and consternation. It is, in other words, my soul’s point of view. Here, there is no right or wrong, no good or bad — truly, all that is here now, is the reflection of the present moment. It is this moment I strive to accept and then release, making room for another moment. It is the gift of the Present, and the Presence, no matter what it is, no matter how much other parts of me rebel and suffer against it.

Which leads me to the psychological plane or perspective. This is where my “humanity” resides, the human part of me that is having the spiritual experience. By design, by conscious and collective choice, I experience the range of human thoughts, emotions, challenges, and triumphs. It was here, that when I learned of my friend’s suicide, tears flowed and my life became hyper-focused on the now. It was here that my mind went exploring for more data, to know the what, why, how, when. It was here that many of my frustrations with a few other people melted, moving from permanent problems to just passing irritations, to disappearing altogether. So Jen and Kent, your healing powers and radiance of unconditional love have made a difference, yet again, in my life.

It was also here that I let waves of my own suicidal thoughts pass through.

It’s about the pain.

Suicide makes most sense to me as relief from pain. It is pain I have experienced as searing, knife-edge, cellular, and soulular pain. It is pain that has caused me at times in my life to literally run screaming through my house at 2 am begging to be left alone — while I was literally home alone. I was screaming at the pain, as it was such a smothering entity at that moment in time. It is pain that has caused me to crumble on the floor and sob uncontrollably. It is pain that has driven me to sit in a room as close to numb and dead as is humanly possible, emitting nearly zero life force, just to survive, literally.

So I would never begrudge anyone taking their own life, regardless of whether they had terminal cancer or massive depression or even just bizarre and brave curiosity about what comes next. Because, I know you and me and they, are 100% safe. And death of the human flesh is just a temporary state of being, a different type of transition in consciousness.

Moving Between Realms

For me, part of the art of consciousness is knowing when and how to occupy the metaphysical or the psychological. It does little good to stuff my emotions down into the darkness by hiding in the metaphysical “Heh, we’re all divine so this is cool” place. There was no reason not to cry as the tears flowed for my friend Jen and her loving husband. No reason not to cry as these tears were also for me and my pain. I want to release my pain. Too often, it causes me to act in goofy ways when I am hiding from it or it from me.

Likewise, I don’t want to get stuck in the psychological — thinking that the sky is falling — because 99.9% of the time it isn’t. This is just how limits and boundaries and space and time are showing up today. Having those notions exist side by side for me, in me and around me, allows me to experience the richness of my life and those in my world with the utmost compassion, curiosity, and at the same time, detachment. It is not a cold detachment (though trust me, I can do ice queen, often with regrets) but it is a warm glowing fire, to which I can toss today’s experiences and make room for tomorrow’s, should tomorrow choose to arrive for me.

More to Explore

I invite you to download my eBook on The Three You’s – it is a primer for moving between the metaphysical and psychological realms that I wrote last year to help me understand this more clearly. The Three You’s are Soul You, Adult You, and Kid You, FYI.

I love this old song of Alanis Morisette, Thank U. She wrote it after a retreat in India, where she acquired the wisdom that is very similar to what I share with Divine Downloads. I agree with every line in the song, literally.

Photo Credit: Edge of the Milky Way – Pemberton, BC by Abhimanyu, on Flickr

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About Roxanne

I use a specialized form of coaching to help people be more of who they are and less of who they're not. I lived in Hawaii for 17 years and now reside in Santa Fe, NM. I work with clients around the world. I invite you to join my "Get Blissed" email list for updates.


  1. Well said Roxanne and I am sorry for your loss.

    Thoughtful and eloquent post on a difficult topic. I was surprised and dismayed at some of the hostile public reaction to Brittany Maynard’s choice to die with dignity when her brain cancer advanced to a certain stage. Because, yes, she is merely transitioning.

    I think it is important to also acknowledge that feelings of anger toward a loved one who has chosen suicide is normal and natural. It is one of the first emotions that occurs when a suicide is a spouse, a child or sibling who chose to take their life due to depression (my family has quite a bit of experience with suicide loss and attempts). If ones left behind understand it is normal to feel angry at the person who has left, they can move on their grieving process. In the same way we can’t move on if we push aside sadness, we can’t move on if we don’t accept initial anger is normal. Accepting our very human emotions and reactions will help us move on so we don’t begrudge their personal decision. By understanding and accepting the initial anger emotion, we can move away from it.

  2. Tania – you raised such a good point about the anger. All of these emotions are valid – I see no reason to judge them or the actions people take. Looks like we have more “grist for the mill” to discuss next time we chat. Love, Rox