This week’s curiosity box has

  • How has suicide, a mental epidemic, been spreading across the world?
  • Who was Pythagoras?
  • If you want to excel as a cricket batsman, where should you go?

A mental epidemic

The news about an uprising Bollywood star’s suicide reminded me how dangerous mental health can be if left unattended. Reports after reports prompted me to dive a bit deeper into world suicide statistics published by the World Health Organisation. In the process, I found some shocking facts.

First fact

Close to 800,000 people commit suicide every year – That is 1 suicide every 40 seconds, which means by the time you read this article, 5 people would have committed suicide. Of that five, 3 or 4 would be men. 

Second fact

I was surprised to find out that men are more likely to commit suicides than women. I think that the “Don’t cry, be a man” kind of societal norm has caused this problem. I wanted to test this out.

I took the top and bottom three countries on the Masculinity score according to the Hofstede culture index. 

The top three masculine countries are Japan, Austria, and Hungary. And the top three feminine countries are Sweden, Norway, and the Netherlands. The graphs revealed just what I was expecting. There is a higher suicide rate in masculine dominated countries than the feminine countries. 

But please don’t get mistaken. This correlation does not mean causation. 

Third fact

There are other countries that have higher suicide rates than the top masculine country. Guyana topped the list because of the Jonestown incident. Jonestown incident was a horrific part in history where a cult leader, Jim Jones, led 918 to commit suicide together. 

After Guyana, the other countries that top the list in terms of suicides per 100k are Russia, Lithuania, and Sri Lanka. Majority of the suicides were because of poverty, cultural emptiness, lack of hope, and previous failed suicide attempts.

Speaking of a cult, did you know that Pythagoras was a cult leader as well? 

That is right, the guy who came up with a2+b2=c2. But there is a good chance that he was not the sole person who came up with that theory. Much of what we know about Pythogrous were written by a 300-member commune he led. The same commune happened to come by so many “discoveries”, and the theory about the hypotenuse of the right angle triangle was one of them. 

Source of this information: Philosophize This!

My friend suggested this podcast to me and I find it very interesting.

Speaking of friends, one of the most cherished sport that I would play all day long with my friends is cricket.

3 – More than a 3rd of total runs scored by Indian cricketers, come from Mumbai‘s batsmen.

What makes this city so unique for cricket batsmen? Apparently, it is the hot, humid, yucky weather many Mumbaikars complain about. Over the day, a team can create up to 5 different playing conditions. Early morning (with and without water sprinkled on the pitch), hot, humid afternoons (with and without water sprayed on the pitch), and normal evening weathers.  

**India and China were not included in this data study. India, because of its sheer population size, is the single largest contributor to the absolute number of suicides. But there is a severe lack in data accuracy. China was not included because there was no data available.

I have created more data visualisation charts for suicide stat. If you would like to see them, DM me or comment below.

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1 Comment

  1. I had just seen a cricket scene from MS Dhoni…and was feeling heavy at heard to think that this actor is no more….your article is interesting…keep it going !

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