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Man's Search for Meaning - Book Report/Review Example

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8 Nov. 2011. Man’s Search for Meaning: Review Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl elaborates the psychological significance and meaning of life. Frankl has attempted to explore these objectives by reflecting upon the tough experiences from his own life…
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Mans Search for Meaning
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Download file to see previous pages In this book, Frankl has encapsulated his own experiences there as well as in several camps in the three years. It was in 1959 when the first part of this book From Death-Camp to Existentialism was available in English in the market. The second part discusses logotherapy. The autobiographical section of the book lays basis for the logotherapy principles that are summarized in the section that follows. The principles of logotherapy discussed include but are not limited to the meaning of life, philosophical concepts, paradoxical intention and such other psychotherapeutic methods. The second section of the book is made very condensed by para-by-para description of each principle of lehotherapy. Conditions in the camp for those that had not been to the gas chambers initially exposed them to intense physical and mental anxiety. The prisoners were forced to do the manual work for 12 hours a day and yet, they were kept undernourished. The prisoners had to work in the extreme cold of the winter season and yet, they were not provided with jerseys. The prisoners also did not have any information about their relatives and friends. They did not know whether they had been gassed immediately or had been taken to some other camp. Frank lost his pregnant wife, parents as well as brother. According to Frank, no more than 1 in every 28 people managed to survive through torture. Survival was near to impossible and very goof luck was needed to achieve that. One had to encounter random killings and yet escape the shot. One had to hide sufficiently so as to escape being selected for a party that would be involved in very intense labor and/or would have a nasty foreman. Apart from escaping the usual abrasions and sores, one was required to avoid acquiring the frostbite. Thus Frankl’s philosophy regarding humans and their life originates in the luck because of which, that 1 individual manages to survive while the rest of the 27 do not. Frankl uses a three stage approach to define the philosophy of humans’ life. In the first stage, Frankl draws upon the philosophy of existential endurance that was originally made by Nietzche according to which, people that have a reason to live can survive in any kinds of circumstances. The “why” defines the purpose of life for individuals. In addition to that, people derive the motivation to survive from their will to learn the meaning of their life. The opposite of this will i.e. the frustration exposes people to various kinds of psychiatric problems. This claim is supported both with the evidence of the camp incidents and also the researches that are discussed in the second part of the book. This principle of life may be called as the will’s domination upon meaning. Frankl asserts that meaning has three fundamental sources, the first one being love. Love is the most significant source of meaning in the camp. Frankl also values his love for his lost wife above all other things. Frankl also quotes the examples of various other prisoners like him whose survival was driven by their love for a relative/relatives or a friend/friends. Work is defined by Frankl as a secondary source of meaning. Again, Frankl’s own experience inside the prison exemplifies that. The manuscript Frankl had purchased for his first logotherapy book was confiscated by a guard. This provided Frankl with a “why” to exist. Since that day on, he started to make notes upon the paper scraps during his stay in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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