Is suicide a mortal sin?


#1

Is suicide a mortal sin?


#2

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=747393

In general, it appears unlikely since most would appear to do so while the "balance of their mind was disturbed" and therefore wouldn't have full culpability for their actions.

We should pray for the souls of those who have seen no other alternative in their distress as well as for peace and comfort for those who are left behind.

(I speak as someone who has lost a friend to suicide some 9 years or so ago. Not many days go by without his memory entering my thoughts)


#3

[quote="fabio_rocha, post:1, topic:313594"]
Is suicide a mortal sin?

[/quote]

It is if the three required conditions are met.

It is obviously grave matter....so the determination would rest on knowledge and consent.

The former is most likely known...that taking ones own life is wrong but the latter, of consent, is much more open.
Only God will know this for sure.

Peace
James


#4

[quote="fabio_rocha, post:1, topic:313594"]
Is suicide a mortal sin?

[/quote]

We should pray for all suicides, as we do not know the state of their souls. Only God knows - while there is cause to hope that suicides may not be in Hell, we don't want to assume anything and should pray for them as often as possible.

I also pray that anyone who is mentally fragile and thinking of suicide will ask for help, which is abundant these days.


#5

It depends on the case.

Some people are mentally disturbed or overwhelmed at the time they choose to end their lives.

Barring extenuating circumstances, suicide is, yes, a mortal sin.


#6

Anyone thinking of such --should seek out help right away…

Such is never the answer.


#7

My understanding of the teaching of the Church is that while suicide is obviously grave matter,it is not necessarily a mortal sin. Keep in mind that for a sin to be mortal it not only must involve grave matter, but it must be done with full knowledge and consent.

If someone is not in their right mind because of mental or emotional problems, they are likely not able to give full consent to their action or have full knowledge of whether it is wrong. Therefore, in those cases it would not be a mortal sin.

We worship a loving God, and he is not going to punish someone because of an action that they freely choose. We should pray for those that have committed suicide and hope that there soul has finally found the peace that it longed for. We should also pray for those who have been left behind that they may find peace as well.


#8

A suicide has murdered himself. Unless there are mitigating circumstances of mental imbalance (in most cases there surely are) it is a mortal sin. Only God knows.


#9

Three things are necessary for a sin to be mortal.
1) The person must know that it is a mortal sin.
2) The person must willingly consent to it.
3) The person must be in a sane mental state.
all three of these must be known in order for a sin to be mortal.


#10

[quote="ChicagoBearsFan, post:9, topic:313594"]
Three things are necessary for a sin to be mortal.
1) The person must know that it is a mortal sin.
2) The person must willingly consent to it.
3) The person must be in a sane mental state.
all three of these must be known in order for a sin to be mortal.

[/quote]

Actually, it's grave matter, full knowledge, and free consent of the will. Toward that end, suicide is certainly a grave matter. However, whether it is a mortal sin is mitigated by the fact that most who commit suicide are doing so under extreme psychological duress, and thus have likely not engaged in sufficient reflection so as to have full knowledge or, moreover, have free consent of the will. Per the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

Suicide

2280 Everyone is responsible for his life before God who has given it to him. It is God who remains the sovereign Master of life. We are obliged to accept life gratefully and preserve it for his honor and the salvation of our souls. We are stewards, not owners, of the life God has entrusted to us. It is not ours to dispose of.

2281 Suicide contradicts the natural inclination of the human being to preserve and perpetuate his life. It is gravely contrary to the just love of self. It likewise offends love of neighbor because it unjustly breaks the ties of solidarity with family, nation, and other human societies to which we continue to have obligations. Suicide is contrary to love for the living God.

2282 If suicide is committed with the intention of setting an example, especially to the young, it also takes on the gravity of scandal. Voluntary co-operation in suicide is contrary to the moral law.

Grave psychological disturbances, anguish, or grave fear of hardship, suffering, or torture can diminish the responsibility of the one committing suicide.

2283 We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance. The Church prays for persons who have taken their own lives.

-ACEGC


#11

[quote="fabio_rocha, post:1, topic:313594"]
Is suicide a mortal sin?

[/quote]

It depends. When Israeli soldiers in biblical times were severely wounded they would commit suicide because being disabled was a death sentence anyway. Killing yourself because your boyfriend or girl friend left you is a mortal sin.


#12

Killing ones self or killing anyone else, is all the same thing, its still killing and taking a life.


#13

Only God knows what's in your heart with any sin. It is his call. Not ours:thumbsup:


#14

The one sin for which you can't repent.


#15

[quote="NeedsMercy, post:14, topic:313594"]
The one sin for which you can't repent.

[/quote]

Any sin for which you don't want repentance is the sin for which you cannot repent.

Again, as the Catechism says, while one cannot repent of suicide (since repentance is not possible in death), we must entrust people who commit suicide to the mercy of God. While it is a grave matter to take one's life, it is not necessarily a mortal sin, the culpability of performing the act having in most cases been mitigated by severe psychological anguish. While what you say here is technically true, we have to be mindful of those who suffer to the point of such anguish that the only recourse they feel they have, the only escape they feel they have, is the escape of death. And we have to be mindful as well of the pain felt by the families and friends they've left behind. Perhaps repentance comes to such people in their final moments, consoled by the God of all mercy who does not abandon his children.

-ACEGC


#16

What about, say, a soldier who throws himself on a grenade to save his comrades?

He's not insane, and he knows what he is doing is certain death.


#17

[quote="Lost_Sheep, post:16, topic:313594"]
What about, say, a soldier who throws himself on a grenade to save his comrades?

He's not insane, and he knows what he is doing is certain death.

[/quote]

Im assuming that would depend on the reason why they are fighting the war to begin with, if it was for a just reason, then the soldier would likely be excused, but if the war was for something other than a just, like over natural resources, or greed, then probably not an excuse.

I tend to believe killing in wars is only excusable if the war/battle is considered just in Gods eyes.


#18

[quote="mikekle, post:17, topic:313594"]
Im assuming that would depend on the reason why they are fighting the war to begin with, if it was for a just reason, then the soldier would likely be excused, but if the war was for something other than a just, like over natural resources, or greed, then probably not an excuse.

I tend to believe killing in wars is only excusable if the war/battle is considered just in Gods eyes.

[/quote]

So that whole bit about "no greater love" applies to soldiers only if they're fighting in a just war, but not an unjust one? Does the love that a soldier have for his comrades, regardless of what side he's fighting on, change depending upon the intentionality of the politicians who sent them all to war? Valor is valor. Love is love. Sacrifice is sacrifice.

-ACEGC


#19

[quote="edward_george, post:15, topic:313594"]
Any sin for which you don't want repentance is the sin for which you cannot repent.

Again, as the Catechism says, while one cannot repent of suicide (since repentance is not possible in death), we must entrust people who commit suicide to the mercy of God. While it is a grave matter to take one's life, it is not necessarily a mortal sin, the culpability of performing the act having in most cases been mitigated by severe psychological anguish. While what you say here is technically true, we have to be mindful of those who suffer to the point of such anguish that the only recourse they feel they have, the only escape they feel they have, is the escape of death. And we have to be mindful as well of the pain felt by the families and friends they've left behind. Perhaps repentance comes to such people in their final moments, consoled by the God of all mercy who does not abandon his children.

-ACEGC

[/quote]

For the record, I am one of those people who have tasted "severe psychological anguish" and have considered taking my life a few times. My statement was sarcastic in nature, because previously suicide was a mortal sin. Period. End of story. It is only now that the mentally ill have been cut some slack.


#20

I truly feel people who commit sucide out of depression are not really in control at that time ive gone thru times where ive thought about it and truly did not feel in control and it takes alot to regain that control


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