Man’s Search for Meaning (PDF/ePUB) by Viktor E. Frankl

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Man’s Search for Meaning Information

Book Name:Man’s Search for Meaning
AuthorViktor E. Frankl
Language:English
File Type:PDF/ePub (Downloadable)
PDF Size:6.24 MB
ePub Size
Pages187
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Viktor Frankl, a psychiatrist, wrote a memoir about his experiences in a Nazi concentration camp that has fascinated readers for decades. Frankl concludes from his own life and the accounts of his patients that while suffering is inevitable, each of us has the freedom to decide how we will respond to it. Logotherapy, his theory, is grounded in the belief that the search of meaning, rather than pleasure, is the basic human desire. To this day, Man’s Search for Meaning remains one of the most influential books in the United States, prompting readers to look for deeper meaning in their lives.

About Author Viktor E. Frankl

Neuropsychiatrist and Holocaust survivor Viktor Emil Frankl M.D., Ph.D. was Austrian. Frankl founded logotherapy, a kind of Existential Analysis, the “Third Viennese School” of psychotherapy.

His 1959 book From Death-Camp to Existentialism, Man’s Search for Meaning. His 1946 book Ein Psycholog erlebt das Konzentrationslager discusses his psychotherapy approach to finding significance in all kinds of existence, even the most vile, and a purpose to live. He helped pioneer existential therap.

Man’s Search for Meaning Book Summary

In his 1946 book, “Man’s Search for Meaning,” Holocaust survivor and therapist Viktor Frankl describes his method of helping patients find meaning in their lives by having them visualise a positive future in which they have achieved their goals.

Frankl argues that a prisoner’s outlook on the future has an impact on how long he lives. The book sets out to address the issue, “How was everyday life in a concentration camp reflected in the mind of the average prisoner?” Part One of Frankl’s book is an analysis of his time in the camps, and Part Two is an explanation of his ideas on meaning and his theory of logotherapy.

Review

I’ve been intending to read it for a long time, but the prospect of reading a book written by a Holocaust survivor that describes that period in their life at length and in gory detail hasn’t exactly piqued my interest. The suffering is boundless, and the novel is horrible, especially the first half or so.

I was also interested in hearing what he thought he had learned about how to be a decent person as a result of this ordeal. This section of the novel was the least rewarding for me. I have to admit that his explanation of logotherapy was boring to me. Books that essentially state, “This person arrived to speak to me regarding a particular issue that had plagued his daily life for decades; I said three sentences to him, and he went away with a skip and a spring in his step,” are not my cup of tea.

You know, pain isn’t a ‘and also’ in life, but frequently our major challenge is learning how to live with (rather than eliminate) suffering. So there are useful aspects to this. I believe the Buddha stated something along those lines, so yes. The idea that having a purpose in life makes it more fulfilling is not exactly ground-breaking either, yet it’s also not something the Buddha emphasised.

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A man whose life was treated with such disdain by those in authority that they took pleasure in making it abundantly clear that his continued existence was entirely at their discretion would not be expected to find meaning in “grand projects” and the like, and his psychology would reflect this. But psychology isn’t my cup of tea because I think it looks longingly through the wrong end of the telescope.

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