Jan 11, 2009

Suicide - In The Aftermath of the financial crisis

I just don't get it -why would a rich man kill himself. I come from Nigeria - a country which is no stranger to corruption, fraud and scandals. Back home, we live in a very materialistic world - where the have's are readily distinguishable from the have nots.

People make and loose fortunes everyday - under unfortunate circumstances. We are a proud people, so when a person's fortunes take a turn for the worse, it's often deeply embarrassing for that person's entire family. However - the prospect of suicide rarely crosses our minds.

I recently read about the rising number of Suicides - apparently due to the ongoing financial crisis. An out-of-work money manager in California loses a fortune and wipes out his family in a murder-suicide. A 90-year-old Ohio widow shoots herself in the chest as authorities arrive to evict her from the modest house she called home for 38 years. In Massachusetts, a housewife who had hidden her family's mounting financial crisis from her husband sends a note to the mortgage company warning: "By the time you foreclose on my house, I'll be dead."

It's one thing for someone who loses a home, a job or perhaps one's life savings - I'm an optimistic person, so I can't understand why anyone would commit Suicide. I'm even more befuddled by the suicide deaths of a Adolf Merckle and Rene-Thierry Magon de la Villehuchet.

It would seem that both men were still wealthy - even though their assets were diminished in part by Mr. Madoff and by the ongoing financial crisis.

Perhaps I'm an internal optimist - I can't explain why anyone would commit suicide - let alone someone with hundreds of millions in the bank.

We need to strive to lead Purpose driven lives - and a life of purpose should never be about amassing material wealth. Our source of being shouldn't revolve around what we own or even our personal/professional accomplishments.

Not saying that's the case for any of these folks - I do know that if your life has true purpose, the concept of suicide should never cross your mind

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