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Self-Immolation

Eitan Haber Photo: Shalom Bar Tal
Eitan Haber Photo: Shalom Bar Tal
 
 

For God's sake, stop

Op-ed: Eitan Haber urges end to self-immolations, says only the living can bring change

Eitan Haber
Published: 07.26.12, 11:05 / Israel Opinion

This is a last call to the despaired who intend to commit suicide: For God’s sake, stop! Stop it!

 

Before you douse your clothes with drops of fuel, before you touch that matchbox, stop for a moment and imagine your broken parents, your shattered wife and your child, whose taste of life will always be bitter.

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Dedicate a minute, just one minute, to thinking about the grandchildren who will not have a grandfather and to the friends who will lose a friend. For God’s sake, stop!

 

Professional psychologists tell us about people who imitate others who commit suicide; about a plague. Even those who until recently believed that these are baseless stories suddenly discovered that there is something to the claim that people emulate others when it comes to suicide. Indeed, newspapers last week and this week were full of fire and smoke. And tears. God, let it end.

 

Judaism, as we know, sanctifies life as a supreme value, as a person’s soul is not his own possession, but rather, is God’s possession. Hence, man has no permission to take his own life.

 

Indeed, many people lost their lives while fighting for the sanctity of life, during the Holocaust and in Israel’s wars. Quite a few died while attempting to save life and adhere to the value of sanctity of life. Yet it appears that in recent years, and perhaps even before that, human life has become cheaper in the State of Israel. It would be appropriate for someone up there to give this some thought.

 

Yet much before that, this is the time and place to ask, plead, demand of those who believe that self-immolation will rid them of the suffering of this foolish world - to think about the suffering they will be leaving in their wake; the sad, forever extinguished eyes of family members and children, and the futility and hopelessness of such death.

 

No match and no fuel will affect the government here. In this respect, self-immolation would be an empty gesture destined for oblivion. If we need to fight and to change, the dead will not be doing it. Only those who are alive will, even if their lives are unbearable.

 

So this is the last call: For God’s sake, stop!

 

 

 

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