Officially known as the Aokigahara Forest, one of the most mysterious places on the planet is better known as the Suicide Forest. As the name suggests, this is due to the sheer number of people who have taken their own lives there. Literally hundreds of people commit suicide each year in this most frightening part of the forest.
Perhaps the forest attracts people who want to take their own lives because of their own dark suicide story – almost like a self-fulfilling prophecy. Or maybe there really is something really evil that twists people’s minds and thoughts. Or could we find that magnetic anomalies have such a macabre effect? Here are ten reasons why the suicide forest is a truly disturbing place.
10. The Place Is Littered With Ribbons
When you venture into Suicide Forest, one of the first things you’ll notice are tapes. And while that doesn’t sound very scary in itself, the background story is for them. Each essentially represents someone who at least went into the forest to kill himself. However, many people would take a long piece of colored tape with them. They would tie it to a tree when they entered the forest. The reason for this was in case the person changed his mind and could then find his way back.
But often, if you would follow these ribbons, you will often find a dead body at the end of them. Often hanging from one of the trees. It is really a dark memory, for all the other visual beauty of the region, that many people come here and never leave. 
9. Personal Items Are Scattered Everywhere
Another harrowing discovery to expect in Suicide Forest is many personal items. Such things as cell phones, notebooks and even clothing. Sometimes these items are discovered in small piles. Almost as if several people had stopped at these places at different times to go over their thoughts. Maybe one last time.
You may also discover empty beverage bottles next to crates and packages of prescription drugs. Most people who take their own lives here do so by hanging themselves. Some of the people who enter, though, choose to overdose on such medications.
What makes all these things even more frightening is once again the realization that everyone is connected to a once-living person. A person who was so desperate that they took their own life here. And just to hammer that point further home, they most likely did so near the place where the objects were found.
8. The Ghosts Of The Dead “Encourage” Suicide
As we can imagine, there are numerous stories of ghosts and spirits living in the forest. However, some legends suggest that these spirits even encourage people to take their own lives while roaming the trees. It is a widespread belief in Japanese folklore that if a person dies a sudden or violent death, this will cause them to become yuri.
These ghostly spirits are said to transfer their anger and rage to those who wonder their way. For example, many people often talk about how they suddenly feel fearful for no reason. Or how waves of fear or panic overcome them without warning.
So imagine that they have these feelings while they are already dealing with real suicidal thoughts. We might also find that there are several other places on earth where people talk about suddenly experiencing intense negative emotions. As we will explore further in our last entry, the reason for this could one day prove to be geological rather than paranormal.
7. Warning Signs Are Everywhere Discouraging Suicide
If one of the above does not hammer home the sheer number of people who have taken their own lives in the suicide forest, then perhaps the numerous warning signs dotted around people specifically NOT warning people not to commit suicide. And these signs can be found everywhere in the forest.
These signs not only contain the warnings that people are trying to convince them to change their mind against suicide, but they also advertise with several telephone numbers of organizations that try to help people in such a dark spirit.
Whether these signs make a difference to those who come to the forest with thoughts of taking their own lives or not is perhaps an open question. The fact that the authorities have taken these measures perhaps shows how seriously they take the problem. And when we look at our next point, it is easy to understand why they would do this.
6. Around 100 Bodies A Year Are Found In The Forest
It is assumed that about 100 corpses per year are removed from the macabre forest. And there are many more that remain there years before they are discovered. Special groups venture into the forest. If they find corpses, they immediately notify the police.
One member of the group – usually an older member – usually stays at the scene to make sure nothing is disturbed. If they happen to discover someone alive, and possibly still thinking about taking their own life, they will accompany that person back to “safe houses” near the forest.
Once there, they are strongly encouraged to accept the help they need to return from the dark place they are in. It is not difficult to imagine why those who fulfill these dark duties become tired of “tourists” visiting the forest and treating it as a spectacle. However, as we will examine in our next point, we cannot be completely sure of these figures, since the Japanese authorities no longer publish them.
5. Official Numbers Are No Longer Given
In another attempt to stop the sheer number of people who come to the suicide forest to take their own lives, the authorities would decide to stop publishing official numbers. And in addition to those who succeed in taking their own lives, there are hundreds of other attempts, which for various reasons may have been talked out of it or simply thought better of their planned action, that are not successful.
Not only would the numbers attract the attention of the Japanese population, but filmmakers would also set up their stories there, usually revolving around the protagonist who committed suicide or entertaining thoughts about it.
Perhaps one of the best examples would be the Gus Van Sant film Sea of Trees from 2015, which once again is perhaps a great proof of how serious the problem of suicides is. It remains to be seen whether this action has achieved a decrease in suicides in the forest.
4. Camping Overnight Is Frowned Upon And Discouraged
For those who want to pitch a tent and camp in the suicide forest, you are strongly discouraged. And even then you really have to stay on the official paths. After all, such ambitions are considered disrespectful by many Japanese. Perhaps for this reason, those who are looking for dark adventures often take themselves deep into the forest away from the trails and watch eyes.
This often leads to people getting lost and disoriented. In addition, temperatures often drop to freezing point at night, which can cause further problems for those who want to stay overnight in the forest.
However, the main reason for this is to prevent people from staying in the forest for a longer period of time. Especially if they have suicidal thoughts. And when we move on to the next point, it is more than easy to understand why.
3. Many Believe An “Evil Energy” Resides In The Forest
Similar to the legends about ghostly apparitions, many legends revolve around the idea that a suicide forest is simply a place of pure evil. Whether by ghosts or simply evil energy, some people subscribe to the theory that bad things happen there because of a supernatural force. If we believe that evil manifests itself from past events, then the fact that so many people have taken their own lives in this place would certainly contribute to this.
But even before the flood of suicides in the late 20th century, the forest had a dark past. A good example of this would be the practice in the 19th year, in which many families would take their elderly people into the forest and leave them so that they could die “with dignity” in the forest. It is certainly a fascinating, albeit gloomy thought. For our next point, however, we will turn to the history of the forest and how it was created. And finally, why it could have such a dark spiritual nature.
2. Eruption Of Mount Fuji
The forest was formed after an eruption from Mount Fuji in 864. The result was that 12 square miles of lava were dispersed where the forest stands today. Once the lava hardened nature took back the region as trees and hemlock grew in abundance. In the following centuries, the Japanese worshipped Mount Fuji as a god. In addition, a great spiritual bond was formed between the population and the region.
This eruption also led to the formation of strange cave systems and caverns in the forest. Many of them are unexplored and often have myths and legends associated with them. This itself adds further layers of intrigue to the mysterious forest.
Whether this beginning of the forest has a connection to its dark nature is speculative and worthy of discussion. For our last point, however, we will turn to science and recent discoveries that may shed light on the way the Aokigahara Forest causes or at least amplifies seemingly dark thoughts.
1. Might Magnetic Anomalies Cause The Suicides?
In recent years, some researchers have suggested that geomagnetic anomalies could trigger such dark thoughts in humans. Especially those who are already suicidal anyway. It is the thought of some researchers that these geomagnetic anomalies take place under the ground where the forest resides. And given that these anomalies are always changing, this could show us why the suicide rate in the macabre forest has apparently skyrocketed in recent decades.
The team that conducted the research also examined other records of geomagnetic activity over the years in other countries. They would find that this often led to an increase in suicides. And these in turn decreased as such geomagnetic anomalies ceased.
Perhaps a particularly interesting conclusion of the study was that these geomagnetic disturbances apparently affected men much more than women. While more research and study is required to support this theory, it is certainly a fascinating one.