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  1. #1
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    Death, Life, and suicide

    *EDIT* please excuse my horrible wording, I'm not the best at putting my thoughts into written word

    One year ago today, a long time friend of mine took his own life. I'm sitting here at my job/school staring at the computer screen and contemplating death while nursing a somach ache, and everything feels so insignificant. It's weird to say that because I almost feel like I'm saying something stereotypical of a person who has just dealt with death, but I just now understand that feeling of insignificance and frustration. It's such a strange sensation to me because this is the first death I've experienced where I was old enough to understand the feeling of loss. I've been almost disturbingly numb to the passing of loved ones in the past, even when it was my own family.

    The thing I want to discuss with everyone is death itself. We know it's inevitable, but we instinctively fear it and view it almost as the ultimate negative. Why? I mean after having given it a lot of thought over the years, the only conclusion I can reach about my opinion of death is...when it comes..at least I'll know for sure what happens when you die. But if death is so inevitable, then it's ridiculous to want to avoid it so badly right? If the only reason our instincts tell us to avoid death is so that we can enjoy life (you know....treasure every breath kinda deal) then doesn't that mean that some consciousness wants us to enjoy these moments of life? And if that's true, then does that mean there is some kind of God?

    And if we are going to die, and life is about enjoying the moments in it, then why are so many of us obsessed with health? It's just delaying the inevitable, buying more time by avoiding the foods that most people enjoy and mainting these strict diets and we as a people deem this "good." Why?! I'm not saying my opinion is for or against this way of thinking, but I keep asking myself "what the hell is the point?" To buy more time with our loved ones? Is that what it is? That's the most valid reason I can come up with, but even that is so up to chance that the point of it still doesnt make sense to me.

    We rush through this life trying to achieve our goals, most of us busting our ass to build up our art skills. I think most in this community have common dreams, a few will achieve them. I'd love to think the majority will, and that only hardwork will bring that majority closer to those dreams, but I can't bring myself to believe that the world is so fair. This rant probably makes me sound like I'm depressed or emo or some shit, but I'm not. I'm actually extremely full of eagerness and ambition to bring my dreams to fruition. I'm preparing all kinds of storylines to develop later on, I'm preparing a portfolio to apply to the atelier. I've got a great girlfriend, like-minded friends, and a growing sense discipline (which has been a pain in the ass to cultivate and maintain for a slacker/highschool drop out like me.) But today I allowed myself to consider the point of what I'm doing, and how upset I would be if I died before being able to achieve my goals.

    The reason I'm posting this here as opposed to some blog is because I really want to hear what you all think. I've been a small part of this community for years now, this forum taught me the importance of life drawing, anatomy, perspective, pretty much all the foundation stuff. This forum turned me from a 17 year old kid doodling picture out of his favorite comic books and anime, into a 22 year old guy seriously studying and practicing all the art fundamentals trying to understand the essentials of good image-making. Your opinions as a community have always fascinated me, and I feel like I want to put a part of my experiences out there and see how everyone else feels.
    Last edited by BlackGuy; December 28th, 2007 at 04:53 PM.


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  3. #2
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    When you are dead, be it after 94 years of good life, or after 17 short ones, what difference does enaything you have done in your life make? If you've had a succesful career, all you leave behind is really a good inheritance for your grand children. If you have been a famous great man, all you leave behind is your memory. You can take NOTHING of this world into the grave.

    This doesn't mean that life is a meaningless space of time before you die. Neither does it mean that with the short time you have on your hands, you should JUST make the best of it, i.e. enjoying the best pleasures, just partiyng because it doesn't matter after you're dead.

    There is a greater meaning to life.

    So PM me if you want to hear more about this Jesus thing.

  4. #3
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    No one knows for sure what happens when you die. All that we know is that it's unavoidable. Even if death can be prevented by scientific achievements, who would really want to live forever? If I could, I would love to live to be a few hundred years old, healthy and young, and finally pass away painlessly and peacefully surrounded by all my grand children. But, that ain't gonna happen.

    I think you've finally come to a point in your life (the "quarter-life crisis") where you begin to start thinking about this stuff, since you're nearing the zenith of your mental and physical health and childhood is finally behind you. I'm only 27, and I'm already freaking out about dying. How will I die? A heart attack? A stroke? Cancer? I fear death... not particularly what happens AFTER you die... just the physiological process of death. Death itself, I view it as what a monster under the bed is to a child. It's not as scary as it may seem, but to the child, it's the most frightening thing in the world. What I hope what happens is that I can still feel, think, and love. What frightens me the most is that I just become non-existant... nothing.

    Anyway, I'm working very hard because I want to leave something positive after I die, so I'm still connected to the world even after I'm gone.

  5. #4
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    Life is a finite blank sheet of paper. You can fill it with whatever you wish without worrying about what lies off the edges.
    I think you are awesome, and I wish you the best in your endeavors, but I am tired of repeating myself, I am very busy with my new baby, and I am no longer a regular participant here, so please do not contact me to ask for advice on your career or education. All of the advice that I have to offer can already be found in the following links. Thank you.

    Perspective 101, Concept Art 101, Games Industry info,Oil Paint info, Acrylic Paint info, my sketchbook.

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  7. #5
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    This time you have now may be all there is. Live it. I can't see how such an approach would make any difference to you if there was an afterlife after all. On the other hand, if there is none, then this was your only chance. Don't waste it.

    I am not saying to go nuts and abandon all sense of ethics or self preservation. I am saying savor this life that you have.

    I realize that is easier said than done sometimes. I have a laundry list of physical stuff that I have to go through on a regular basis (probably MS) but I am making the most of it. I have seen a lot of people get snuffed out way too young and leave a lot of unfinished business. It's tragic. Fight through the bad times and take your shots at the things you want to accomplish.

  8. #6
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    Nothing is truly constant- the universe will die one day, or at least be so drastically different that it has moved beyond that which we are capable of perceiving. We're apes... monkeys... tree shrews... fish with legs... complicated tubes of goo. We're probably not the most complicated things the universe has to offer, and chances are we have no higher authorities to answer to; any more powerful beings in the cosmos probably don't give a shit what we do with our dime-a-dozen gooey little planet. We have only ourselves, our hedonistic, greedy, awful selves- or was that our pleasure-seeking, altruistic, loving selves... either way, those are our instincts, and for good or ill, we're stuck with them. Evolution will happen as it will- nobody ever said it was supposed to be fair. Who was it that said "The strong do what they will, the weak suffer what they must."? It's not an ideological statement, just an observation of the way things are. We like to think we have conscious control over our own fate as a species, but the truth is that power and destruction lie in the hands of irrational beings- governments and corporations. Those entities rarely anticipate their own deaths, merely avoiding it instinctively like any animal would. We like to think we're capable of steering that, but it always ends up going its own way, heedless of the conscience that spawned it. The fact that we're even still around despite this seemingly self-destructive propensity is evidence, to me at least, of our overall inherent goodness, love of our fellow humans, and viability as a species. The best we can do as individuals is to maintain that, for the good of the species (I don't want to hear any crap from people proposing human extinction. We have just as much right to do what we do as the Deccan Traps had to kill off the dinosaurs, or the Insects had to colonize land.). This extends to maintaining our planet in a sustainable manner, of course. That's simple preservation. Death is just part of being an animal. It sucks, but we've been doing it for billions of years. Everything dies, Everything changes. Make the best of your coincidence.
    We shall not cease from exploration
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  10. #7
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    I wrote a really long ramble here, but suddenly it was gone, I must have touched the backspace or something.

    Essence:

    There is no meaning with life. The dinosaurs lived for 100 millions of years, for what? What have they left? Nothing. I don't believe in a purpose in life, and destiny is something we have made to comfort ourselves, an excuse for our mistakes.

    No one has made a purpose of your life, make it yourself. All you have is life, and time to live it, so do. Enjoy every fucking moment of it. Carpe diem, seize life.

    I don't believe in a god, I think that there's nothing after death. I don't believe in a soul, or paradise. Why can I then be optimistic about life, some ask.

    I enjoy my life, though not as much as I should do.

    I'm not afraid of death, but I am afraid of dying too soon, to not have enough time.

    Death is invincible, no one survives life. Live it while you do, enjoy yourself, your life and those people around you. Anyone can die any time, there's nothing you can do about it, just do the things you want to while you can.

    Sorry for going off a track.

  11. #8
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    Don't fear, but fear itself. A purpose in life is only what you make of it. You are one small ripple in a numerous amount of wave of events that lead to other conclusions and events. That is a purpose. for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. now to figure out whether it was good or bad is just concepts humans made up. no matter what a person does they will always influence others or things either on a big or small scale. Death is a part of life.


    ...Live long, and prosper/party hard...like it's 2099

    in other words, stop looking for a meaning to life or you will miss out on even having one.

    all I ask is to just not kill anyone intentionally in the process...Please?
    Last edited by Costau D; December 28th, 2007 at 07:20 PM.
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  12. #9
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    And, a different take on this is the natural selection one... humanity wants to live because those who want to live tend to live than those who might not, and longer life means you're better able to pass your genes on (or help others to live and do so) and over tens of thousands of years (or millions tending on how far back you look) it makes a difference. I'm not saying people only live to pass their genes on, for, because humans are social creatures, just living a productive life benefits others who continue the human race.

    Except for in some special cases, all animals spend their lives fearing and avoiding death. People are animals, (and, though there are things like suicide, war, and things like that) they generally follow that same instinctual pattern.

    I think the difference (and why people ask those kinds of questions) is that animals generally have no true knowing "record" of death (though there might be some evidence in "higher animals"), so they're only working on the "stay alive" instinct, while people have memories and evidence of loved ones dying (and the world continuing beyond that) on top of that instinct. But it's still there.

    I know your questions are a little "deeper" than that, but you've got to admit I have a point.

  13. #10
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    One thing i never could help getting out of my head. That little talk Agent Smith was giving to Morpheus in The Matrix. Because, it is so true in a way.



    We must try to be a Happy Plague though!
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  14. #11
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    There is no reverse gear on life; I guess that's why people are obsessed with health (if they are). It's not like a dvd or video,- you can't rewind or edit; there's no replay. That, for me, is the best reason to strive for a good life, whatever your definition of a "good life" is.

    Birth and death are both parts of life; nobody who experiences the first avoids the last. They're both PART of life, and they both happen when the time is right or fate or chance intervenes. Beyond taking care of our health and not doing stupid things, there is nothing we can do to influence that...
    so all we can do is make our lives as worthwhile to ourselves and as valuable to other people as we can.

    Not sure how much sense that makes to you, but I've had a scare or two myself in the past five years or so, and lost a few people who mattered to me, and that's the best I can come up with. Sorry....

  15. #12
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    Even if longer life can't be guaranteed, diet and exercise give a better quality life. You feel better physically and psychologically. Still it's unfair though, a month of hard training can get all fucked up in about 5 days of no exercise and eating junk food.
    The other stuff I can't answer, too difficult to explain over the internet without having it come across as a cry for help.
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  16. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainInsano View Post

    I think you've finally come to a point in your life (the "quarter-life crisis") where you begin to start thinking about this stuff, since you're nearing the zenith of your mental and physical health and childhood is finally behind you. I'm only 27, and I'm already freaking out about dying. How will I die? A heart attack? A stroke? Cancer? I fear death... not particularly what happens AFTER you die... just the physiological process of death. Death itself, I view it as what a monster under the bed is to a child. It's not as scary as it may seem, but to the child, it's the most frightening thing in the world. What I hope what happens is that I can still feel, think, and love. What frightens me the most is that I just become non-existant... nothing.
    holy shit,i just had a telepathic moment or something,because this is exactly where i stand. (xept that i'm 22)
    now i have to go paint not to freak out over death. (really,thinking about being non-existant freaks me the fuck out)
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  18. #14
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    1, My physical purpose is to preserve and replicate myself.

    2. My social purpose is to better the world around me.

    3. My psychological purpose is to reach and exceed my potential.

    Nothing else will make me or, I believe, anyone else truly happy. When death interferes, kick its ass in any way you can. All the rest is psychological noise.

    EDIT: I hope that didn't come across as one of those crappy kev fererra-esque "so vague it's lame" tautologies. Feel free to critique this in any way you like.
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    I think you've finally come to a point in your life (the "quarter-life crisis") where you begin to start thinking about this stuff, since you're nearing the zenith of your mental and physical health and childhood is finally behind you. I'm only 27, and I'm already freaking out about dying. How will I die? A heart attack? A stroke? Cancer? I fear death... not particularly what happens AFTER you die... just the physiological process of death. Death itself, I view it as what a monster under the bed is to a child. It's not as scary as it may seem, but to the child, it's the most frightening thing in the world. What I hope what happens is that I can still feel, think, and love. What frightens me the most is that I just become non-existant... nothing.
    Quote Originally Posted by Carnifex View Post
    holy shit,i just had a telepathic moment or something,because this is exactly where i stand. (xept that i'm 22)
    now i have to go paint not to freak out over death. (really,thinking about being non-existant freaks me the fuck out)
    I actually think I'm over that point, I've felt as you describe, but it's years ago, now my feelings about death are different. I don't agree with the 'quarter-life' thing though, I'm only 15, but I've always been thinking (way too) much.

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