On Suicide and Other Things

The Philippine archipelago was shocked around 8:30 to 9:00 AM this morning when its former secretary of Energy, Environment and Natural Resources, Interior and Local Government, and National Defense passed away. The drama happened at Loyola Memorial Park, right by the grave ex-AFP Chief-of-Staff Angie Reyes’  mother. After some preliminary autopsy studies, it was hinted that Reyes committed suicide.

Somehow, I imagined this as a Detective Conan murder case where the suspect’s plot involves faking the victim’s suicide. Well, as a self-confessed Holmes freak, I am not suspending this idea/possibility.

I’ve always upheld myself to this belief in life that suicide is the most cowardly thing one can attempt to do on Earth (no, make that the whole universe). It’s so selfish of those who think of killing themselves when in turn there are LOTS of people in the world who are desperately clinging for their life, no thanks to this incurable disease. They are those people who are so afraid to face their problems that they just resort to the loser way of permanently avoiding them. They are nothing more than a bunch of ugly cry babies who suddenly power off their GameBoy after getting defeated by Kamek and/or Wario for the first time.

(By the way, I looooove Wario.)

Then again, there were two instances of my life that I saw myself “at a dead end” (quoting Sec. Reyes himself, courtesy of Com. Robles). Only a few of my really close friends know this, but I’ll do myself a favor now and tell it to the rest of the world, to show that I’ve managed to move on already. The first event was during fifth year college, when flunking a specific major subject was as close as to the possibility of a hailstorm brewing up in Reykjavik, Iceland tomorrow. My former teacher told me s/he was disappointed with how I performed, especially since I was doing more than average during the first two “prequel” classes. During those times, I was contemplating on the billions of probabilities of me not graduating on time. Then Ondoy happened. In a weird way, the said natural calamity gave birth to a miracle for me. I passed the said subject in question.

The second incident involves having a row with a very close friend last year. I will not be specifying the details, but let’s just say that it involves me wronging him/her then suddenly realizing that I’ve always failed in realizing some life goal I’ve been chasing around for five years. The rest is all about me that pitying myself balderdash. Good thing that sometime during the week, we decided to settle things and s/he cleared me of things clouding my head. I then saw those things I did was not able to see during my blindedness. I wanted to live again.

Blurred lines of thinking. The culprits. Good thing I managed to apprehend them, with the help of my closest friends.

Let me make it clear though, that at those two instances I actually had no solid plans of ending my life. I was just barking and not biting. Well, hmmmm probably for the first one, I was actually considering doing something nasty, had it not been to a roommate/high school barkada who I lived with then. Of course I cannot hope to kill myself with him around haha!

But before these, I always believed that suicidals are the world’s biggest losers. That was something intensified when in the latter part of 2008, two Ateneans killed themselves and back at home I have my maternal grandfather unable to walk because of his stupid bed sore. I knew then that Lolo Abner was just months away before Death fetches him, and I felt really disgusted with how those two irresponsible kids decided to abruptly end their dreams already. Lolo wanted to extend his life to the point of seeing my children, to the point of me being a full-fledged PhD already. Unfortunately, he was unable to even hang on my head my first undergraduate cord. He died of gastric carcinoma before even I got my BS Chemistry. His body was already at the final stages of rotting when I got my BS MSE.

Then again, it was during those times that my mind started to hear other opinions on suicide as well. I quote this Commitment Theology (Th151) teacher I never had that “people who commit suicide do not necessarily go to hell. They were after all tormented by their minds by those times of great trials, and thus were unable to think properly. God does not punish such.” In a follow-up, my Moral Philosophy (Ph104) teacher also said that suicide does not really conflict with the ethics of Aristotle and Aquinas (though on a Kantian perspective, it is unacceptable). Following the same line of reason, “a suicidal does not have a rational mind by the time he thinks of committing the deed.”

Come to think of it, I learned in my Japanese Culture (JSP111/SA142) and Japanese History (Hi16) classes that for the Japanese, committing suicide is actually a noble act. This applies more to defeated warriors who choose to give up their lives instead of doing something nasty for their motherland. I am suddenly reminded that man is the architect of his own actions.

Sec. Angie Reyes used to view everything from the top of the world. He was an achiever student, officer, teacher, husband, and father. Last 2003, he could’ve pursued with his retirement when he tendered his resignation as Department of National Defense secretary but then again for him his duties were not yet finished. He went on to take three more cabinet posts, however this seemed to be a wrong move for him. Allegations and anomalies were thrown at him, front, back, right, left, and center. The man who formerly was not used to seeing mud now swam sadly in it. His life sloped in a deadly manner, as if he was journeying by the treacherous Kenon Road. And all he wanted was to retire and spend the rest of his life with his grandchildren.

I therefore think that it is improper for us Filipinos to talk of the late Reyes in ill ways, especially his death has not even passed 24 hours. No one knows (not even his best of best friends) what his real reasons are. Let the man be. His death really is of a great loss not only for his family, but for this truth-thirsty country, so let’s just pray for his peace.

And honestly, he wouldn’t have been promoted to the highest rank a military soldier can dream of had he not done splendid things in the past. I actually believe that Reyes is a man of great honor. As I was jokingly saying earlier, it’s just that he may have Japanese blood in him.

He may be guilty. He may not even be involved at all. He may have protected friends. Or he may have really not known everything  happening under his nose. We will never know. Maybe in the end that’s what Reyes wants to do — to bring back his life to the top of the pedestal by creating an illusion around himself. Whatever his reasons are, he has them. Yet his brain became clouded in darkness, sadness, and disappointment that the reason for those reasons was not a rational one anymore.

Reyes’ death then puts our justice system to the challenge of digging more for truth, now with one avenue permanently gone. They must not suck up and continue whining on Reyes committing suicide. Please, do yourselves and our country a favor. MOVE ON.

As our Lord and God Jesus Christ once said, Let him who has not sinned cast the first stone. If you think that you are a perfect human being, go to Sec. Angie Reyes’ wake and do that actual thing of throwing a stone (that is if you pass the securities). Then do yourself a favor and hang yourself by committing your first ever loser act.

Eternal rest grant upon Sec. Angie Reyes, oh Lord, and let Your perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. Amen.

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