Man's Search for Meaning
The Theory of Logotherapy in Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
In the following essay I will write to the third section covered in the course. That is, the section on Integrators, such as, Viktor Frankl and Erich Fromm. The focus of the paper will correlate to Frankl’s work, Man’s Search for Meaning. My goal is to properly evaluate his theory of logotherapy and explain how traces of nearly all of the human science branches we have studied can be found in this specific work. Following the said evaluation, I will briefly say what these comparisons tell me about human science. To sum it all up I will display my own personal thoughts of Integrators.
Frankl’s book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is a highly esteemed novel which lays out, as he puts it, “Logotherapy in a Nutshell” (Frankl 97). The book also has an autobiographical account of his time spent in concentration camp during the Holocaust to back up his theory. The entire book is garnished with a diversity of the separate branches of the human sciences. One may find their self asking how Frankl integrated all of these branches in spite of the contradictions between them. At first, it will seem as if we could only say he is one or two of these, but the fact that he does climb many branches of the human science tree shows why he is such a wonderful integrator.
The comparison between the branches will be shown in the order of how they were taught in the class. That is, starting with existentialism and phenomenology and ending with psychoanalysis. (It would be redundant to compare integrator to integrator insofar as they are already considered as being classified as people who have elements of other branches, so it is apparent that there would be comparison as well as contradictions.)
I could write an entire commentary of Frankl by strictly looking at him from an existential standpoint. For purposes of brevity I will only highlight the largest points and comparisons. Primarily, we can see all of Yalom’s Four Givens of Existence incorporated into Man’s Search for Meaning. However, there is one of the givens that exerts primacy in Frankl’s work. This would be Yalom’s given which states we must find meaning in a world that bares none. This basically is what Frankl calls logotherapy with a few more words. Logotherapy is the means used to diagnose a patient by asking them to look at yourself introspectively and retrospectively to work towards finding the meaning of your own life (Frankl 98). Existentialism as a whole is about the purpose and meaning of our existence. Frankl says that each man needs to have his own will to meaning (Frankl 99) whereas existentialism claims that each man is solely his own and therefore needs to aspire own his own.
Now I will discuss how Frankl is compared to phenomenology. In the section labeled “A Logodrama,” Frankl tells about a woman who attempted suicide because she had lost her first born and her second child was crippled (Frankl 117). Frankl proceeds to ask the woman to explain whether or not she has had a successful life. In spite of her attempted suicide, she does actually believe that her life is rewarding and found that she does have a meaning and purpose to continue. The phenomenological aspect of this is that Frankl did not ask her if her she believed her life was successful as a mother, parent, or woman, but that he simply asked if she believes she had a successful life. He stripped her of all the labels given to her and allowed her to answer the question from any perspective she wished to. Furthermore, the woman was allowed the opportunity to get into the core of her dilemma, which is a high mark of phenomenology.
Next, I will explain how Frankl’s work is somewhat psychoanalytic. As it is known Man’s Search for Meaning starts off with Frankl’s autobiographical account. Freud believes that we can find the essence of our meaning by looking to our past. The induction of Frankl’s autobiographical summary of his times in the concentration camps shows that he believed his past backed up his theory; gave foundation to what supported the meaning of his logotherapy.
The last section covered in class as of yet is humanistic psychology. Some of the goals of humanistic psychology are authenticity, self-actualization, and a mind-body connection. First, notice how authenticity is a goal. This can be found again in the fact that Frankl added his autobiographical account to his theory. By doing so he intended to authenticate his work and show that it has derived from genuine experiences. The next goal that was aforementioned was the idea of self-actualization; the act of coming to terms with one’s self and realizing one’s true inner self. After reading this book it is impossible to say that there is no self-actualization in it. “At that moment I saw the plain truth and did what marked the culminating point of the first phase of my psychological reaction: I struck out my whole former life” (Frankl, 14). Frankl shows that he has realized that in order to preserve his self he must first extinguish all attachments to his former self. The last goal of the humanistic psychology approach is the mind-body connection. The book flourishes with examples of this. Frankl says many times that if one did not have the will to survive he would not. “My mind still clung to the image of my wife”… “I didn’t even know if she were still alive” … “Love goes very far beyond the physical person of the beloved” (Frankl 38).
After writing this evaluation, I have come to realize something about the separate branches of the human science approach. That is, that they seem to be more worried about distinguishing why they are different than attempting to explain why they are effective. I know this may seem like a blunt, if not ignorant, statement, but I do believe there is beyond sufficient information within the integrators section that can prove my claim. As I have shown in the above work, integrators can seamlessly utilize all branches of the human science approach with little to no contradictions or conflictions. This shows how these people, who have decided to not stick to a single way of approaching the mind, are able to better tackle issues without sticking to the constraints of a single branch. Therefore, they can progress through the segregation set up by the boundaries of branches of human science.
I do believe that human science is an amazing approach to psychology; however, I additionally believe that human science, like most structured organizations, loses its meaning and effectiveness in categorizing its views. For example, look at politics. Generally things are governed by a republican or democratic decision. Unfortunately, sometimes a candidate for a position must go against their own personal opinions and go for what will get them the most acceptance and support from their specific party. This can be applied directly to these branches of human science. Each person we meet is completely individual, has an individual mind, holds individual opinions, and expresses emotions in individual ways. Because of this I believe that no therapist should ever try to stick to their ideal branch. People deserve more than pot luck of what their therapist is. They deserve what makes them overcome their issues.
How the Meaning of Life Affects on an Individual in “A Man’s Search for Meaning”
In A Man’s Search for Meaning Dr. Frankl demonstrates the way the “meaning of life” affects a person’s drive and will. Frankl’s main argument is a prisoner’s struggle to find a purpose for his suffering within a concentration camp. However, this idea can be applied to everyday situations the average person experiences. A man may endure any level of suffering, if only he has a reason to do so.
The author defines the “meaning of life” as a “‘why’ for his existence”. If a man discovers a reason for accepting his sufferings, he will be much more successful in doing so. A person who is aware of “why” he should endure it will be much better equipped to continue on and succeed. Pointless suffering of any sort is nearly unbearable to anyone.
Long after Dr. Frankl is released from the concentration camps, and has returned to practicing, an elderly gentleman was admitted to his care. The man had lost his wife, and could not overcome the grief he held. This man could not comprehend why he should attempt to deal with this tragedy. He didn’t understand what the worth was in enduring it. The doctor began to discuss with him. He guided the conversation towards the idea that, had he died first, the man’s wife would have been struck with a similar depression. Upon coming to this, Dr. Frankl offer the man a conclusion; “such a suffering has been spared her, and it was you who spared her this… At the price that now you have to survive and mourn her”. The realization gave the gentleman a reason for having to suffer this. He was saving his wife’s happiness, so to speak. Without a purpose for his struggles, he was hopeless. He saw no upside to his predicament, no silver lining. Once he found his reason, he gained a comfort in that fact. The idea that his struggling now seemed noble as opposed to pitiful was enough reason for him to accept his task.
Dr. Frankl himself found a purpose for his sufferings, even within Auschwitz and other camps. He recollects one moment where the act of walking bright so much pain that he was in tears, and his thoughts were only centered around concentrating on surviving through the rest of the week. He became appalled with his current difficulties, which followed him day after day. In an attempt to distract himself, he imagined giving a lecture about the psychology of the concentration camps. He imagined a future beyond the camp. This method worked for him – his pain became a device for which to use in the future. When he imagined a future for himself, and therefore a goal to achieve, Dr. Frankl was able to feel hope for what was beyond his “provisional existence”. For, as he states, “the prisoner who had lost faith in the future … was doomed”. This person would begin to rapidly succumb to both physical and mental decay.
“Man’s Search for Meaning” provides many examples for the effects of purpose on an individual’s personal drive. Without a meaning, life becomes futile and unimportant. Whether it be within a life – or – death scenario, or feeling the, more commonly felt, loss of a loved one, meaning provides the necessary drive for perseverance. A man may endure any level of suffering, so long as he has a reason to continue on.
Paul Kalanithi ‘when Breath Becomes Air’ Vs. Viktor Frankl’s ‘man’s Search for Meaning’
When Breath becomes Air and Mans Search for Meaning have many different ideas associated with suffering. While reading these books, you may start to compare and contrast different ideas and may have stronger opinions towards one idea than another., I believe that through suffering, it is important to remember religion to make our life significant. Through suffering, religion can be used to find meaning in the experience.
In When Breath Becomes Air, Paul Kalantithi has the idea that it is not what causes the suffering or how to get through the suffering, it is what we do to give our life meaning. He states, “I had to face my mortality and try to understand what made my life worth living” (Kalantithi 139). Suffering is not what we should focus on, especially during hardships. The important thing to focus on is what makes us happy and makes our life worth it. Without making our lives meaningful and doing what we really enjoy in life, is it even worth the suffering? Throughout his book, he mentions several times that sometimes the “right” decision is not always the best decision. He explains people on ventilators and how they will never be able to experience life as they once had. Without some of these opportunities that put meaning into our lives, they are not always worth the suffering that we go through. Man’s Search for Meaning takes a different approach to suffering. Viktor E. Frankl believes that we as humans have to go through suffering countless times in able to find meaning in our lives. He believes that we will not always find our meaning at the end of our life if we did not go through enough suffering. Victor Frankl shows this idea through his book stating, “If there is meaning in life at all, then there must be meaning in suffering” (Frankl 76). This shows that there is meaning in everything, even suffering. Just because suffering puts strain on us as people, does not mean that we will not learn a powerful message from it.
Although Paul Kalantihi and Vicktor Frankl may have many differences within their texts, there are similarities as well. In their books, both men believe that you can hear about several different experiences that people have gone through, but without going through them yourself, you do not understand how emotionally conflicting they can be. For example, Victor Frankl writes, “Those who have not gone through a similar experience can hardly conceive of the soul-destroying mental conflict and clashes of will power which a famished man experiences” (Frankl 43). This is very true for both Kalanithi and Frankl. Frankl had gone through the holocaust and had lost numerous family members through the tragedy. Kalantihi was diagnosed with terminal cancer while finishing up his residency to be a doctor. He left behind a wife and an eight-month old baby. These situations, especially, would be extremely difficult to relate to. Many of us have lost a family member to cancer, or has heard a story of someone surviving the holocaust. Do we really understand what it feels like to be suffering in their situation?
Religion also plays a huge role in suffering. As many people may not consider themselves religious, most of us turn to religion when we need help the most. During suffering, some people may ask for healing and strength, and some may pray to have their sins forgiven. Regardless of many ideas, religion can scientifically help suffering. In the article, Spiritual/Religious Needs of Adolescents with Cancer, it was scientifically proven that religion can help patients with cancer find meaning to their lives and can prevent diseases associated with their cancer. The article stated that when adolescents were suffering through a dramatic stage of their life, they were in need of many different themes. It states, “They were in need for a relationship with God; the need for a relationship with the self; the need for a relationship with others; and the need for a relationship with the environment and nature” (Amidah 13). I feel as though religion gave these patients a sense of hope and a sense of belonging. By tying themselves to religion, and engaging themselves with “religious” people, it helped them find their place and their meaning. 
There is another scientific article that states that suicidal patients that turn to religion as a sense of purpose, dramatically decreases depressive symptoms and increases life quality for the patient. In Sense of Purpose in Life and Escape from Self as the Predictors of Quality of life in Clinical Samples, it states that patients who go through suffering, such as suicide attempts, are more likely to turn to religion for help. For these patients, they are more than likely to find their meaning in life and have overall happiness compared to people who have never found religion to begin with. The article states, “The ability to maintain the feeling of sense of one’s existence seems to be a significant factor that protects from a decrease inlife quality and keeps the feeling of being able to deal in difficult situations, as well as helps to accept depression symptoms” (Magdalena 517).
Everyone expresses religion differently, but that does not mean that it will affect our ability to find our meaning.. From these books and articles, it shows that we find our meaning through the amount of suffering that we endure. Religion may be a big factor and give people a sense of meaning and belonging, but we can find our meaning through other sources. It is not all the suffering that we have gone through, but it is if we have found our meaning at the end of it.
Man’s Search for Meaning: Finding the Real Purpose of Life in Frankl’s Work
MAN’S SEARCH FOR MEANING PAPER
In the book “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor E. Frankl, he talked about ways of finding meaning in life. One of which he talked about was creating a work or doing good deeds. One can ask what is their purpose in life, what is the meaning of their existence? And a lot of people have failed, or yet to understand, what the meaning of life is to them. Everybody in has a purpose and concentration of their existence in life, but how can you tell? For some people, it is creating, or inventing, or generating something that can stand greatly and meaningful in someone else’s life.
For most people, their purpose in life might be to help others, in this sense doing good deeds, how can we tell if one is doing good deeds? Some people can’t tell how involved they are in other people’s lives. For example, taking care of the old, helping the homeless, reaching out to those people suffering from tragic situation or natural disaster; these are things people consider to be there purpose in life. Frankl also talked about how he was able to help people in the camp who was thinking of committing suicide to get out of it. This can be said to be his purpose, to help these people who really needed help to define themselves.
In many religions, people try to serve others through the belief in God. They believe if you do good to someone, good things tend to happen to you. Which can easily be said to be the law of karma. Doing good in life is one of the ways people tend to find their purpose, in Frankl’s book, he talked about how some of the guards were nice to the slaves and as to how the slaves saw them. Good deeds can be another way of defining one’s self worth. You can internally hold yourself above others based on the different charitable acts that you have accomplished throughout your lifetime. This inflated self-worth can last through many tribulations and is not sought after in vain or falsely supported. In the modern world, charitable acts don’t always come from a place pure of heart, or even of a background to find one’s purpose. Instead, theses deeds could be only to inflate one’s image to the public eye, or to reference to when trying to impress peers or employers.
Another way that people dedicate their lives with through a specific work, accomplishment, or service. They will find one thing that they thrive under and will truly sanctify the rest of their thoughts, deeds, circle of peers, and topics of discussion underneath of it. This sort of mindset can include inventions or programs. So, for example, an inventor can base their entire worth of their life over the invention that they were successful in making. Even if aspects of this person’s personal, financial, romantic, social, or even educational backgrounds of life, they can look back to this one foundational accomplishment and nothing else matters. They can still see themselves as wildly successful and can always base their self-worth over this one instance.
Frankl gives us an anecdote over the purpose of tragedy as well. In this book, we are told the story of a man in deep mourning over the loss of his wife. He was so distressed that he asked Frankl why did this have to happen to him? Why did his wife have to die before him? Why was he left in misery mourning her loss in n hellish existence of a concentration camp? He fraught over these many questions and could do nothing but keep asking why. Frankl helped this man by simply asking him if he would rather his wife die after him and be left in the miserable position he was in. He stopped and answered no. The suffering man then realized the silver lining in his wife’s death. She was not left to endure life in the concentration camp without his companionship, love, and protection. Frankl then describes to this man that there was purpose in this awful occurrence even though it seemed nothing but purposeless and tortuous at first.
In the camp, a lot of people thought their life was over, they felt they did not have anything to live for anymore. Frankl was able to convince some of his fellow prisoners not to give up and challenge them to find their purpose. Through this a lot of them was able to hold on to the struggle and survive through it, where there were good deeds in the mind of some and others could think of having that freedom to go back home. But it was tough for they never thought they would see the day they will go home as they see a lot of people get flamed every day.
Frankl then informs us that he found his sole purpose in life throughout his experience in the concertation camp. He realized that the atmosphere he was in gave him the opportunity to help many hopeless people find the will to live during this awful time. Frankl was given the chance to save many suffering, innocent people from committing suicide because they didn’t understand what they did to deserve the predicament that they were in. He was a therapist to these individuals and found his purpose through this situation. Frankl realized that even though he was suffering as well, he now had a steadfast purpose with his knowledge, his skill, his social ability and understanding, and his overall life. Even though he was put in a hellish existence, he helped many people find hope. Frankl woke up every day with an aspiration to help others, to bring even a shred of hope and happiness to this beaten peoples’ lives. This shown that one can find their purpose even in the most desolate and horrid conditions. This all is based off their self-worth seen through works. Frankl knew he was making a difference in people’s lives each day, which in turn gave him a reason to get up each day. The pass off of hope kept many people strong even though a tortuous war experience.
Many people also base every single instance and work that stems from their lifestyle. They believe that whatever they do must back up their believe system and their in depth religious background. Glory and honor must always be given to their creator and god. When one believes this type of lifestyle is crucial, they also believe that every good or bad things is connected directly to how good they did in their last act or creation. If this type of believer does not feel as if they are doing a good job in this instance of their lifestyle they begin to feel purposeless and depressed.
When I am looking at my own life through the different ideals that Frankl discussed, I begin to see my long-term purpose more clearly. For me, coming to America was a huge step in my life and was a way to search for the mean of my own existence. I came to America as a teenage boy to play basketball and get a high school education. Where I am from, not many kids get the opportunity that I received. Because I was lucky enough to receive the lifestyle that I have, I was to be able to help other children back in my home country, Nigeria. I am planning to help kids like myself through a basketball program, by providing shoes and clothes that many of these children are in desperate need of, and also by helping in any way I can to strengthen the educational system of Nigeria. I feel as if my purpose is to use this opportunity that I was given to reach out to the kids of my home community through good deeds and creating a safe atmosphere for them to grow up in.
“Man’s Search for Meaning” shows us the different ways that man positions his lifestyle to be able to find his purpose to be alive. This included the purpose to create a work or do a deed, by experiencing something or encountering someone, and by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering. Frankl gives us his personal experiences within some of these categories and how we found his purpose within the suffering situations he found himself in. Finding the true purpose of your own life can happen at any time, we must be open to accept it and be ready to embrace it whenever it is made clear to us.
Man’s Authenticity In The Search For Meaning Through Viktor Frankl’s Logotherapy
Background of the Study
Viktor Frankl‘s s most popular book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is one of the resource where one can understand his life and work. The book details Frankl‘s experiences in the concentration camps. This book of Frankl which has been translated into many different languages and sold more than millions of copies worldwide (1997). In Man‟s Search for Meaning, Frankl details not only the experiences, but also the condition out of which his basic philosophy arose with stronger conviction that life has meaning under all circumstances.
Statement of the Problem
This paper goal is to provide a substantial account of man’s authenticity in the process of claiming the wholeness of human condition in search for meaning. An existential crisis of finding meaning despite of the harshest condition in life. A crisis that may arise to an individual. A crisis that sometimes directed a person to give up and commit outrageous act that destroy one’s dignity in life. The Logotherapy of Viktor Frankl greatly aid the person who in his condition be confronted with and reoriented toward the meaning of life. Thus, in order to discuss and support the researcher’s claim, the researcher will elaborate on the authenticity of man in his search for meaning by discussing the following questions; (1) What are the essentials of life component that make life worth living for and meaningful? Is it sufficiently strong that man can commit to be goal oriented? (2) Then, is the existence of man meaningful? How can one find significance in life despite of difficulties and sufferings? (3) Lastly, what is the meaning of life or the ultimate meaning of life?
Significance of the Study
The study of Viktor Frankl’s concept of finding Meaning conveys out a vision in the authenticity of man in his will to meaning through his daily actions and beliefs that greatly determine the meaning in his life. Also as to stress on the three ways on how an individual could discover meaning as Frankl interprets it, that man does have a choice of action even in such harshest condition. Thus, the contribution of the researcher in this paper is the exploration of man’s authenticity in his search for meaning that led him to pursue for the ultimate meaning of life and that would be the concept of God. This paper is relevant because the concept of Frankl’s, Man’s Search for Meaning, has an impact in guiding any human condition in discovering meaning. He introduces it in his own way though his logotherapy that man are to be confronted with and reoriented toward the meaning of life.
Primarily, this paper focuses on Viktor Frankl’s notion of discovering meaning in human condition. Thus, this paper explores the ideas and important key points mentioned only from the following books that are related to the topic: Man’s Search for Meaning, Principles in Discovering Meaning in Life and work, and Man’s search for the Ultimate Meaning.
To elaborate on the topic, the researcher is going to describe the procedure that are being use in this paper. It will also include discussion on how the researcher explore the topic and how it is being analyze and validate. The philosopher at the same time a physician, Viktor Frankl is the one who introduces his own philosophy of logotherapy, He made the discovery of logotherapy which greatly contribute in aiding the person who in his condition be confronted with and reoriented toward the meaning of life, especially those who experience a sense of meaninglessness in life.
First, this paper will explore on the three ways to discover meaning in life. A meaning that can be found either in an active way or in passive way of enjoyment in life. An active way of enjoyment, which manifested in one’s work and deed. The passive way of enjoyment which arises in meeting someone or something.
Second, the researcher will give emphasis in which Viktor Frankl stresses his philosophy on logotherapy in which it is relevant in today’s generation where human condition of being burden by personal and family problems in comparison to a concentration camp.
Lastly, the researcher will aim to give a simple and yet substantial explanation and a deep impression to the reader through connecting each point of the said topic of man’s authenticity in the process of claiming the wholeness of human condition in search for meaning. Each chapter will end with points to ponder to highlight connections in the context of discerning meaning that aim to bridge the individual chapters, and will provide a list of the relevant sources in the bibliography.
The Significance of Man’s Life
The meaning in the life of human person is the vitality or fuel that rouses us to accomplish our maximum capacity as individuals, in our own personal, and our functioning lives. The meaning may not be constantly accessible to our human discernment, and to our perception, for the reason that we are limited individuals. Although, precisely this limit displays a test to us, which must be beaten just with an unrestricted desire to discover meaning throughout everyday life. [5: Alex Pattakos, Prisoners of our thoughts: Viktor Frankl’s principles for discovering meaning in life and work, second edition revised and updated.
Human beings are not a life form that simply seeking for pleasure or power but a life form that continually evolving and seeking meaning in life. In fact, individual make due with the quest for pleasure and power just when they fail to discover meaning in life. Actual existence of authentic life pulls in us with its clarity and aliveness. Yet, man cannot however contemplate whether such a life is too much to expect. Man essential inspiration is the will to meaning. The uniqueness that recognizes every person and gives an importance to his reality has a direction on innovative work as much as it does on human love.
Despite the fact that the preciousness of man’s life is clear to us, there are three different ways to discover meaning in man’s precious life. According to Viktor Frankl, one can realize meaning in life: by working or doing a deed, experiencing and loving something or someone, and facing unavoidable suffering as a challenge in life. To provide support of man’s authenticity in the process of claiming the wholeness of human condition in search for meaning, let us explore the first two ways of discovering meaning in man’s life; creating, and loving, per Frankl’s method.
Active Way of Enjoyment – Creating
The primary method to discover meaning is through an active way of life in which an individual make a work or complete a deed. An active life serves the reason for allowing man the chance to acknowledge esteems in innovative work. Every individual has an exceptional condition, and everyone has unique purpose in life. In that way Viktor Frankl does not believe that the significance of life can be replied in general terms because the importance of life varies from man to man, day to day, and hour to hour. Certainly, there is an open door, which anticipates through everyday life. An open door that offers an opportunity that decided one’s destiny in life. Man may discover meaning in things that really interest in his mind. He may discover meaning by being great at his particular work.
The true significance in discovering meaning in life is to dwell in the creation rather than putting oneself in a box where there is no room for improvement. Frank called this constitutive characteristic of man as “the self-transcendence of human existence,” through work or service. It means that man through the completion of his work and the deeds that he do is always point to the idea of directing it to someone or something that causes him to excel in his doing. In Frankl’s experiences in the concentration camp where his fellow prisoner strive to work hard, despite of the harsh condition, in order to please the guard or in exchange for something to eat. A driving force that made man to cast his utmost ability for someone or to something.
Man in every possible way must live in accordance with his interest and that can support him to discover meaning. For instance, if man is fond of creating then he will always do his best to achieve excellence, which directed his work to a meaning. A teacher who love to educate his own student through teaching the best possible method. An actor who loves acting will always do his best to please his audience. Thus, one may discover meaning in his own pace, in doing great at one’s particular work. By accomplishing and achieving something that put a lot of a person’s effort and time is worth it and a meaningful one that can truly be treasure.
Passive Way of Enjoyment – Loving
The second method to discover meaning is through the passive way of enjoyment. It is called the passive way of enjoyment because it is latent way of expressing. It is there like a wind that you know that it exists but apparently, it cannot be seen. This method is not an active type, rather it is a type of surrendering and giving up for love to transcend. This manages an individual the chance to get satisfaction in encountering excellence in beauty, art, or nature. It is suggesting that it arises in experiencing a person or a thing that changes how one see reality. As of now, you are alive, its mind blowing in the event of life that man could by one way or another change the manner in which one fit to see, that is by encountering the extraordinary beauty, wonder, and mystery in life. A person may be the kind of individual that can discover meaning in life by just lying in bed or just by sitting under a big tree for the whole day and getting a charge out of it. Frankl proposes that man can discover meaning in this type of remote enjoyment.
The bottom line of this method is about love. On love, Frankl states that love is the best way to get a hold on another individual in the deepest center of his identity. In Frankl’s experience in the concentration camp, he depicts on how he was consoled in his struggle by envisioning his adored spouse. He discovered significance in recollecting her love. Right then at the very moment when one is in constant recollection of latent love towards their beloved they can understand and can find meaning in living. It was not just the desire for seeing her that kept Frankl alive, however the memory, which gave him a cherishing perspective as he pondered her. He composes that the memory of holding that love before his eyes was sufficient, regardless of whether he realized that his wife was dead. Once more, this significance of life is in a method for seeing or adoring, not really doing or acting anything. Whether all expectation of seeing his significant other is gone, seeing through the eyes of affection is sufficient, that it can be counted as a wonderful meaning in one’s life. Regardless whether that memory is at some point ruined, he can at present hold it in his mind and return to an approach for seeing that it is love.
Even if an individual had carried on with a narrow-minded life. In the end, he will appreciate the experience he is presently having. Even if he has nobody to converse with aside from a book. However, as he converses with the book, he encounters something unimaginable. By having a book as a companion, he encounters meaning. The book may have meaning to the man and find life in it. This is hard to comprehend, yet one may discover significance in life in an inexpressible and lovely method for seeing that may rise above personal responsibility. That is, discovering meaning in the most notable adoration, in seeing reality with love. Human affection happens from numerous points of view. Likewise, in contrasts to the nature of individual’s close to personal and working lives that arises an impression of being related with, if not the immediate consequence of, these human affections. Individual whom by all account living and working with a sense of meaning as their essential wellspring of human affection seemed to be more passionate, involved, and resilient than those who are living and working with no sense of hope and meaning at all. Once more, as long as an individual does not surrender to lose hope, one may discover meaning in a latent method, in an experience with love. A love that transcend an individual because of softness, emptiness, and the loss of self that enabled man the experience of love to arise inside him. The main concern there is a method for being and seeing that establishes another importance and meaning of life and along these lines is typically connected with the most notable type of adoration, love.
The Meaning in Suffering
In the perspective on the likelihood of discovering meaning in suffering, life’s meaning is a genuine one. That genuine significance, nevertheless, is paralleled by a clear value of every single individual. It is what merits the enduring nature of the nobility of human person. Sometimes the gravity of the hardships or difficulties that individual faces drives man to identify the meaning of life’s moments. When there is a meaning in life, then there is also a meaning in suffering. A meaning that will incredibly transcend the nature of man. Suffering is always at man’s side, for without suffering there would be no color to life. Suffering is the partner of enjoyment. This does not mean that man ought to make suffering, rather it is about how an individual manage to handle with unavoidable suffering.
A feeling of insignificance or meaninglessness brings about sufferings. The hopeless feeling that dragged down the human person to live no more upon any condition in life. If suffering were avoidable, no individual would eventually want it in his lives. Nevertheless, in reality, suffering is unavoidable, yet man can choose to change the frames of mind to discover significance in life and put meaning in it. When we are never again ready to change a human condition, we are tested to change ourselves, which bore a striking similitude to every individual who used to think that they do not had anything more to expect from life. There are individuals who see’s life meaningless and would continue to see it meaningless unless some sort of miracle will happen along the way. Like the experience of the prisoner in the concentration camp, which as per Frankl that it is not the physical pain which hurts the most it is the mental agony caused by the injustice, the absurdity of it all.
Those individuals who experience suffering, regard suffering as a wall that cannot be surpass. An opponent that cannot be outdone. Ironically, giving up on the quest of finding significance in life is the only option they see. On the contrary, there are individuals who see suffering as an opportunity rather than a problem that needed to deal with. An opponent that must be outdone no matter what the risk is. For these individual perceives things in a different way, where the quest for finding meaning in life is their primary source of human condition. Thus, man can built up the understanding that he could change the manner in which he saw and responded to his new, discomforting conditions, and turn it to a new type of achievement and success.
Man should always remember that we might likewise discover meaning in life nevertheless when stood up to with a miserable circumstance, when confronting a destiny that cannot be change. For what will matter most at that certain moment is how an individual will handle the suffering that befall upon him and turn it into his own strength. A strength that will bring him to accomplishment and victory. A victory that even his own self cannot comprehend until he find value and meaning in it. The way man handles and acknowledges unavoidable sufferings gives an adequate chance to add understanding and importance in life. An individual can stay courageous, honorable and unselfish even in the outrageous and harshest condition. In the unpleasant battle for self-safeguarding, an individual may overlook his human pride and become more human than an animal. Here lies the possibility for a man either to utilize or to do without the chances of achieving the ethical qualities that a tough condition may manage the cost of him whether he is deserving of his sufferings or not. In the event that men are troubled for unavoidable reasons, one must stay away from those individuals who need to fulfill or attempt to make and feel hopeless for being miserable. Sometimes it is great and appropriate to be troubled, and man can in any case discover meaning throughout it in his everyday life. Discovering meaning in suffering is more important than pleasure and bliss. When an individual discover meaning in suffering, he enter in a condition of being that rises above pleasure and bliss.
Unrestrained Choice the Concept of Opportunity
Frankl expresses that, ‘what was at last in charge of the condition of the detainee’s internal identity was less the mental causes but rather more it was the aftereffect of a free choice.’ He believes that man generally has some level of opportunity, and that man can utilize this opportunity to find meaning in life.
How about we investigate a portion of the recorded occasions to more readily comprehend his concept of opportunity. In his book in titled “Mans Search for Meaning,” Frankl portrays his awful encounters in the death camp. He portrays detainees called Capos who were eager to do anything for power and survival. The experience is like the survival of the fittest, beating fellow Capos more than the guards. Frankl states, ‘Just those detainees could keep alive who, following quite a while of trekking from camp to camp, had lost all compunctions in their battle for presence; they were set up to utilize each mean, legit and something else, even severe power, burglary, and double-crossing of their companions, so as to spare themselves’.
Freedom to Discover Meaning
“That which was ultimately responsible for the state of the prisoner’s inner self was not so much the psychological causes as it was the result of a free decision.”
Authenticity of Man
Man’s life is like a labyrinth, which is not a riddle to be explain, yet a path of meaning to be experience. Authenticity finds meaning in a specific style of uniqueness in human being. Such an authentic method for living appeared differently in relation to the falsity of a basic existence where man lost in the secrecy of the group. Such an actual existence of authentic way pulls in us with its clarity and aliveness. Yet, one cannot however ponder whether such a life is not too much to anticipate.
Will to Meaning
Man in his search for meaning is the primary motivation in his life and not a ‘secondary rationalization’ of instinctual drives. This meaning is unique and specific in that it must and can be fulfilled by him alone; only then does it achieve a significance which will satisfy his own will to meaning.
Every individual face his very own conflicts each day, nothing trivial, yet there is always that thing called losing or winning. My take is we never lose; it is most likely a bypass in camouflage driving us to something better. Something meaningful that will probably change our very own view in life. When on one start not to be afraid to start over, it is a chance to build something better this time. One’s lack of dedication is an insult to those who believe in you Life is a series of millions of tiny miracles that gives meaning to one’s life. Everything in life happens for a reason, no matter how hard or how unfair it may be something better will always come out of it.
- Frankl, Viktor. Man’s Search for Meaning; An Introduction to Logotheraphy 4TH Ed. Translated by Ilse Lasch. Boston: Beacon Press, 1992.
- Pattakos, Alex. Prisoners of our thoughts: Viktor Frankl’s principles for discovering meaning in life and work. Second edition revised and updated. California: Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc., 2008.
- Frankl, Viktor. Man’s Search for Meaning, revised and updated. New York: Washington square press, 1988.
- Holmes, Jeremy. ‘Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl.’ British Journal of Psychiatry 205, no. 02 (2014): 102. doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.113.133520.
- Kovacs, George. ‘Ultimate Reality and Meaning in Viktor E. Frankl.’ Ultimate Reality and Meaning 5, no. 2 (1982): 118-39. doi:10.3138/uram.5.2.118.