The world has registered many celebrity suicides till date. The latest being the Bollywood heartthrob Sushant Singh Rajput. In the recent past too, there were many young TV artists, quite a few American movie stars, Business men, Sports persons too.
What killed Sushant? We can rule out mental disorder, chronic disease, failed affair, financial burden. Can loneliness be the cause? Can it be the vicious ‘Ambition’ that corrodes the insides continuously of someone who had successfully made it big on the silverscreen after the idiot box? Or, like Seau, Sushant also had regrets in his mind for what he had become? But he still had a lot of time to make changes. To go back and start again. So was it a whim? A stray but prolonged thought of thoughtlessness? Could anyone had prevented it? Or if the moment had passed away, would he have brushed the thought of going ahead and killing himself just as we brush off the bread crumbs from our clothes? Yes, these random thoughts are like those bread crumbs that fall from the corners of our mouth when it is full and stick to the fabric of life. They remain there if we do not brush them aside. They make our clothes dirty and our image careless. Had he been the victim of such singular thoughts?
Social media has a mixed response. A section is comparing his suicide with the death of our jawan who laid his life for the nation. His name was not contemplated by the nation the whole day. Why? Just because he was not famous and rich and privileged?
No. The difference between these two deaths is vast. The jawan had a purpose in his mind when he fought and unfortunately died. Sushant Singh could not see any purpose in his life and he surrendered. How can these two deaths be compared? People are still in a shock. And this shock is what the media is exploring.
Junior Seau was an American professional football player in the National Football League (NFL). Quite passionate and invincible in his play, he was elected posthumously to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2015. On May 2, 2012, Seau committed suicide at his home in Oceanside. There was no suicide note. The only thing he left were the words of his favorite country song, “Who I Ain’t”. The song, co-written by his friend Jamie Paulin, describes a man who regrets the person he has become. Phew!!!!
These three words tell us a lot about the reason behind the ultimate action taken by him. Of course, the apparant reason for his condition was concussions which many football players suffer in their lifetime. He did suffer from insomnia for a few years too. But what I want to draw your attention is to the song expressing ‘regret’ for the person he had become. Success or money or fame or luxury at that precise point did not stop him from taking his own life. May be some choices that he had to make in life, hunted him!!
The title of this article is borrowed from the famous poem ‘Richard Cory’ by E A Robinson written in 1897. The poem starts with the outward description of Richard Cory who is a gentleman, rich, handsome, privileged and ‘admirably schooled in every grace’. So much so that the people on the pavement earnestly wished to be like him. They were not happy with their own life. They cursed each day and constantly wished that they should have been like Richard Cory. And one calm evening, Richard Cory went to his home and put a bullet through his head!! Sigh!!!!! For the people who are on the pavement, neither the death of Seau nor of Sushant and Richard Cory have any valid explanation. We who have little, and who dream little, consider life as a blessing. Every new day is a struggle, every new achievement a time for celebration. No reason behind the suicides can be a valid reason. Let us go a step further. More reason for us to be sensitive towards people around us who are suffering in their own way. May be Richard Cory lurks in each one of us. May be sometimes he takes control of us. May be, at that precise moment, if someone talks to us, we can conquer that moment of weakness. Let us keep in touch with our near and dear ones. Who knows but our one step of connecting can save a life!!!