The following is an essay I originally wrote with the intent of submitting to this contest. However, I learned that the essay contest was sponsored by a Christian organization and I would lose the rights to my essay upon submission. So, rather than trying to win me some damn money, I submitted to this website for free. Please understand I have no reason to lie to anyone. It is up to the reader to determine for themselves the validity of my personal account of my own life. I have added some content that was not in the original version.
I learned in the groundbreaking film, “What the Bleep Do We Know?“, that when a person experiences a “eureka” moment, the pleasure centers in that person’s brain flare and the hypothalamus sends a rush of neuropeptides through the bloodstream. The flaring of the brain’s pleasure centers is one the primary motivations for living in human beings. Experiencing a “eureka” moment has the potential to induce the same level of ecstasy as mainlining the finest dose of opium or having the most soul-shattering orgasm.
Our brains and bodies can become addicted to these internal chemical reactions in exactly the same way as a person can become addicted to opium or sex. Discovering a reason to live is perhaps the greatest of all possible “eureka” moments. What a paradox this is. If glowing pleasure centers are a person’s primary reason to live, then that person could actually become addicted to the pleasure of discovering a reason to live. In so doing, that person is achieving the highest of natural highs. I have come face to face with this paradox numerous times in my strange, tumultuous life. I have attempted suicide so many times I literally do not remember the exact number of attempts. I believe that I died and through my death, I discovered the most meaningful reason to live I have ever found. I attained the most ultimate “eureka” moment a person can attain. The purpose of this essay is to describe this moment. As well as to impart upon the reader the inspiring notion that, though absurd, life is not without meaning or purpose.
I attempted suicide for the first time at the age of twelve. I tried to suffocate myself with a plastic bag. I remember distinctly my reasoning for doing this. It went like this, “Nothing really matters because I can always just kill myself. I don’t like my parents. I don’t like my school. I don’t like my town. If I kill myself, I won’t have to worry about them or about growing up.”
For many years after this incident, I could not shake myself loose of the mindset of “nothing matters because I can just kill myself.” As I grew in to my teens, I only adopted more complex and convoluted arguments for this stance. I became obsessed with the poetry and romance of suicide. I spent every waking moment in a dense, medicated cloud of misery and hopelessness. I was constantly being picked apart by doctors, psychiatrists and therapists. I spent most of my adolescence in and out of state-run institutions. No one could help me and even if they could, I wouldn’t let them. “Suicide is an inalienable human right,” I would often say. “No one asks for life, so why do people get so upset when someone doesn’t want it anymore?”
I attempted suicide several more times before I turned eighteen. In my senior year of high school, only a few weeks after being accepted by Indiana University, I tried again, big time. I overdosed on prescription medication and I spent several days on life support. I will never be able to forget the sensation of waking up in a strange, unknown place with a breathing tube down my throat. Apparently, my parents had given up hope that I would regain consciousness. The room was empty when I woke up. Alone with my thoughts, I remember wishing someone was there. I remember wishing that someone on this planet could prove to me that it mattered to them if I lived or died.
Prior to this attempt, I was most likely ruminating on the daily ridicule and ostracism I felt, growing up as a long-haired, disaffected teen in a small, rural town during the Bush years and after the Columbine Massacre. The town I lived in pulsated with ignorance and hate. The Bush administration fostered and encouraged this ignorance and hate. Our government had plunged itself into an unsanctioned and unjust war, a war that is still waging strong today. Nearly all of the students at my school were completely swept up in the propaganda of the post-9/11 years. Many of them went on to join the military. Several of them were killed overseas. By this time in my life, I had decided I did not want to live on a planet ruled by greedy, arrogant, lying, murderous psychopaths. I felt like a person without a country or a species to call his own.
After my stint on life support, I became incredibly depressed by the fact that, unlike in movies, none of my near-death experiences had provided me with any sort of divine wisdom or intervention. I saw no tunnels of light. I heard no foreboding voices of Gods. I had no cathartic out of body experiences. I simply remember falling asleep then waking up again, in the same hellscape of loneliness I was trying to escape. I often became convinced I was in hell. Not the biblical hell made of fire and brimstone. No, a scientific version of hell. Through quantum physics I had learned that all existence is predicated on probability. Since the probability of me surviving so many suicide attempts was so low, then the universe I existed in must also have an extremely low probability of existence. I became convinced that, in this universe, evil wins. The evidence for this belief was all around me.
In our world, men commit genocide for profit. Women and children are sold in to sexual slavery every day. Banks steal our life savings and disappear to tropical islands. Religious extremists burn each other’s temples and kill each other’s children to prove their devotion to a benevolent God. Avarice is sold to the public as a virtue. Politicians lie and deceive entire populations to serve their own agendas. Industry poisons and destroys the natural beauty of the Earth itself, leaving future generations with a barren dystopia to call home. The rich and powerful call these things “progress”.
Latest posts by C.K. Golden (see all)
- Board Games (An experiment in Sorcery and Manifesting Reality) - Jul 12, 2016
- Capital K’s Conundrum:How to Be an Anonymous Porn Star - Jul 1, 2016
- Once Upon a Time in the Midwest:An Open Letter to Humanity - Jun 22, 2016