What a folly to dread the thought of throwing away life at once, and yet have no regard to throwing it away by parcels and piecemeal.
—John Howe (b.1957) Canadian Artist
O deaf to nature and to Heaven’s command, against thyself to lift the murdering hand! — Oh, damned despair, to shun the living light, and plunge thy guilty soul in endless night!
—Lucretius (c.99–55 BCE) Roman Epicurean Poet, Philosopher
If you must commit suicide… always contrive to do it as decorously as possible; the decencies, whether of life or of death, should never be lost sight of.
—George Borrow (1803–81) English Novelist, Author
Not a single star will be left in the night. The night will not be left. I will die and, with me, the weight of the intolerable universe. I shall erase the pyramids, the medallions, the continents and faces. I shall erase the accumulated past. I shall make dust of history, dust of dust. Now I am looking on the final sunset. I am hearing the last bird. I bequeath nothingness to no one.
—Jorge Luis Borges (1899–1986) Argentine Writer, Essayist, Poet
One said of suicide, “As long as one has brains one should not blow them out.” And another answered, “But when one has ceased to have them, too often one cannot.”
—F. H. Bradley (1846–1924) British Philosopher
Sometimes I wonder if suicides aren’t in fact sad guardians of the meaning of life.
—Vaclav Havel (1936–2011) Czech Dramatist, Statesman
However great a man’s fear of life, suicide remains the courageous act, the clear-headed act of a mathematician. The suicide has judged by the laws of chance — so many odds against one that to live will be more miserable than to die. His sense of mathematics is greater than his sense of survival. But think how a sense of survival must clamor to be heard at the last moment, what excuses it must present of a totally unscientific nature.
—Graham Greene (1904–91) British Novelist, Playwright, Short Story Writer