Japanese suicide forest – Aokigahara

Have you ever wondered what is the second most popular place on Earth for people to commit suicide? Well you don’t have to wonder anymore. It’s the Aokigahara forest in Japan, on the slopes of Mount Fuji. For the past few decades, there have been hundreds, if not thousands of reported cases of suicide inside the 30 square kilometer spread of the Aokigahara forest.

Japanese suicide forest – Aokigahara

In the recent years local officials have stopped reporting the number of people that commit suicides in the forest, to discourage other people in attempting to do the same. However, since the early 2000s, when the numbers were still being reported, around 100 bodies were being discovered every year. People usually end their lives by hanging or through drug overdose.

Two main explanations exist on why so many people decide to end their lives in Aokigahara. First there’s the disturbing tale that forest was the place where ancient Japanese would send their family members during famines, to thin the herd so there’s enough food for everyone. Now the forest is still hungry for souls and it draws people in to commit suicide.

Second more down to Earth explanation talks about a novel from the 70s where the main characters, a couple, decide to end their lives. What’s confusing is the fact that the suicides were already happening even before the novel was published. Isn’t that freaky, worthy of Read Platform.