The quote “dying is easy living is hard” comes from the hit musical Hamilton. And it’s also used in the writings of Gayle Forman.
An author who is known for her books for young adults.
But back to the quote.
One of the big challenges when thinking about a quote like this is its meaning. And the unpleasantness behind it.
People die each and every day from suicide. It’s sad.
If you need help, please get some.
Or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
But the challenges of life on Earth are well-documented.
And many see dying by suicide as the only way out. But you do have another option. And that option is life.
So, LIVE your life!
Even when shit gets hard and you might questions things. Or want out.
Because dying is easy living is hard.
Suicide: What Faith Teaches Us
The Old Testaments’ order against suicide is found in Exodus 20:13.
This text is normally used as the basis for the scriptural forbidding of this act.
And moving on to the Qur’an, it forbids suicide.
Because Allah has granted life in his mercy, destroying it is seen as an act specifically against the will of God.
Suicide is illegal in Muslim countries. And most likely underreported.
But when you look at the Hindu and Buddhist faiths, both offer a gentler ruling against suicide.
And the main focus of Buddhism is pretty interesting. Look into it when you get a chance. But… both faiths include a belief in reincarnation.
And many leaders of these faiths point out – suicide may end the suffering of your current body. But the suffering of the soul or spirit will continue.
At least until the true causes of the suffering, delusion, hatred, and greed are given up.
Dying is Easy Living is Hard and Fighting The Good Fight
For many, chronic pain, whether it’s physical, mental, or emotional, is the reason for suicide.
And we must separate those two words: Chronic and Pain.
Because we’ve all experienced pain.
Whether it was the heartache from a failed relationship. The mental pain from being forced to change your expectations.
Or physical pain from an accident or illness, we’ve all endured pain of some form. And the suffering that comes with it.
But, when the pain becomes chronic, things change.
You’re more aware of it. Maybe even constantly where you can’t help but focus on the pain.
If you break your arm, getting a cast is good. And you’ll most likely heal over time.
But if you pinch a nerve in your neck and have chronic pain in your arm and a burning sensation in your fingers. Well…
That makes trying to fall asleep at night much harder.
Your pain is constant. And the true suffering of chronic pain isn’t the pain. It’s the chronic part. It just won’t go away.
For example, have you ever read a book you loved so much you don’t realize just how much time has passed?
This state of happiness never happens for those suffering from chronic pain.
Because when something always hurts, you always have an awareness of the passage of time.
Whether it be physical, mental, or emotional pain.
Ways To Break The Grip of Constant Suffering
Chronic pain sufferers may have days when they know better than most dying is easy living is hard.
However, there are ways to break with this mindset.
Because death is NOT the only way out. Whether your pain is physical, emotional, or mental, you can use meditation and focus to find some calm.
Meditation allows you to create a disconnect between the reality you are facing and your understanding of it.
Plus, meditation is a portable solution. You can take it with you anywhere you go.
And once you understand there can be a gap between the pain and your response to that pain, you can widen it.
Recent science also includes “mental escape” as a way to break away from constant suffering, especially for those who struggle with anxiety and depression.
Medical marijuana use for the treatment of depression, PTSD, anxiety, and addiction is increasing. And it offers those who struggle with mental health challenges an exciting ray of hope.
There are also prescription medications available that can impact how your brain puts serotonin to work.
Serotonin, the “feel good” hormone, is a natural mood stabilizer.
And if your brain struggles to put serotonin to work effectively, you can find it hard to maintain hope about anything.
Which then cuts into your happiness to feel joy. Or look forward to anything and see a reason to strive for more.
When A Person Who Lacks:
- Hope because of depression
- Power because of crippling PTSD
- Control because of addiction
- Focus because of anxiety
Finally, finds a solution or some relief, their brain learns an important lesson.
The reality that’s been grinding you down for as long as you’ve been struggling with your illness is mostly a construct.
You need to do whatever it takes to get some help. And when you do, I hope you can see what’s constructed can be deconstructed and rebuilt.
Your brain can and will think differently and start communicating in a way it hasn’t for years.
A Quick Word On Addiction
Someone who has struggled with addiction knows better than most that dying is easy living is hard.
But… they keep showing up and trying. Why?
Because many who struggle with addiction picked up their habit as a means of self-medication.
If you struggle with depression, you may have started to use drugs to lift yourself out of a low spot.
And if you’re fighting anxiety, you may use alcohol or abuse cannabis to control the spinning wheel of unhelpful thoughts.
The difference between occasional self-medication and crippling addiction is often tied to finding something that works.
Versus finding something that works at the moment.
For someone who’s used alcohol to shut down destructive PTSD thoughts, both the body and mind have become dependent on the product.
Getting off of it without help and guidance can be fatal.
Addiction is a fatal illness.
And the inability to ask for help is a strong indicator that reliance on the addictive substance will continue until the body gives out.
And the spirit gives up.
The isolation and stigma around emotional and mental disorders are destructive aspects of our culture. And it doesn’t get enough attention.
Death Can Be Seen As An Escape.
But it’s NOT.
And unless you’ve struggled with suicidal thoughts, the pull and power of the phrase “dying is easy, it’s living that’s hard” is extremely difficult to grasp.
But, once you’ve experienced the pull of those thoughts.
And the strength it takes to acknowledge them and still move forward…
Well, each day above ground after that is something to be admired and cherished.
So even if dying is easy and living is hard, keep faith tough times don’t last.