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Book Review: Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl


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Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl Book Review 

Introduction  of Man's Search for Meaning 

We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life daily and hourly. Our answer must consist not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.

When Man's Search for Meaning was first published in 1959, it was hailed by Carl Rogers as "one of the outstanding contributions to psychological thought in the last fifty years." Now, more than forty years and 4 million copies later, this tribute to hope in the face of unimaginable loss has emerged as a true classic. 

Man's Search for Meaning --at once a memoir, a self-help book, and a psychology manual is the story of psychiatrist Viktor Frankl's struggle for survival during his three years in Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps. Yet rather than "a tale concerned with the great horrors," Frankl focuses on the "hard fight for existence" waged by "the great army of unknown and unrecorded."

Viktor Frankl's training as a psychiatrist allowed him a remarkable perspective on the psychology of survival. In these inspired pages, he asserts that "the will to meaning" is the basic motivation for human life. This simple and yet profound statement became the basis of his psychological theory, logotherapy, and forever changed the way we understand our humanity in the face of suffering. 

As Nietzsche put it, "He who has a why to live for can bear almost anyhow." Frankl's seminal work offers us all an avenue to greater meaning and purpose in our own lives-a way to transcend suffering and find significance in the act of living.

Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl's memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Between 1942 and 1945 Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on his own experience and the experiences of others he treated later in his practice, 

Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. Frankl's theory-known as logotherapy, from the Greek word logos ("meaning")-holds that our primary drive in life is not pleasure, as Freud maintained, but the discovery and pursuit of what we personally find meaningful.

At the time of Frankl's death in 1997, Man's Search for Meaning had sold more than 10 million copies in twenty-four languages. A 1991 reader survey for the Library of Congress that asked readers to name a "book that made a difference in your life " found Man's Search for Meaning among the ten most influential books in America.

Beacon Press, the original publisher of Man's Search for Meaning, is issuing this new paperback edition with a new Foreword, biographical Afterword, jacket, price, and classroom materials to reach new generations of readers.
book-review-mans-search-for-meaning-by-viktor-e-frankl



About the Author 

Victor E. Frankl (Frank.VE, 1905-1997), MD, professor of neurology and psychiatry at the Medical University of Vienna, and a chief specialist at the Vienna Medical School for Neurological Integrative Medicine for 25 years "And "existential analysis", it is called the third Vienna school of psychotherapy after Freud's psychoanalysis and Adler's individual psychology. 

He holds professorships at Harvard, Stanford, Dallas, and Pittsburgh, and teaches Significance at San Diego International University in California. Frankel has published 39 works that have been translated into 34 languages. His work "Live the Meaning of Life" is one of the "Top Ten Most Influential Books in America".


Book Review of Man's Search for Meaning

I saw a passage on the Internet a long time ago: "We come to this world with our own cries and leave this world with the cries of others", I remember the first time I saw it, it was still a shock. Most of us have thought about "death" and "why to live" during adolescence, and that was our first inquiry about the meaning of life, the first real meaning of our spiritual world. growth on.

One day I was hanging out on Facebook, and in three or four different groups, I saw someone posting and asking: "What is the meaning of life?", or simply saying "I don't know why I live, so I don't want to live anymore"— - At the age of thirteen, I also once did not want to live because of similar problems.

What is the meaning of life?

Some people say that the moment we fall from our mother's body, we are doomed to die. Whether you are a dignitary, a celebrity, an emperor, or a beggar on the street, you are bound to die one day. the endpoint. Immortality does not exist. All the wealth you have earned through hard work and hard work today will be turned into nothingness at the moment when your body is wiped out. No one can stop the development of this natural law, including Qin Shihuang and Chairman Mao included.

It's very frustrating to say that, no matter how much we struggle and struggle, it can't change the end of life is destined to be an empty end, whether you are a multi-millionaire or a slum alcoholic, in the end when you lie in the morgue, are nothing, and the same cold, the same naked, no difference.

That being the case, why should I live seriously? Why work so hard? Why should I bear all the pain that life has brought me? Anyway, in the end, they all have to die, and they all have to face nothing.

Yes, in fact, the original intention of my writing these words is to explore this question, that is:
  • we know that we will eventually die, why should we live so seriously?
  • We know that in the end, we must have nothing, come and go naked, why work so hard?
  • We know that the pain of life will become nothing in the end, why should we endure so much additional pain and hardship in silence?

First of all, I don't agree with Freud's "birth instinct" theory. I always feel that most of his theoretical theories are actually "first discovering the incomprehensible phenomenon, and then inventing a theory in order not to be confused by the phenomenon. to explain".

I think that the reason why people know everything is empty and still live strong is because of the ideological nature of the human species.

Humans are the only thinking species in the world. After tens of thousands of years of evolution, human beings habitually find patterns in all kinds of noisy things and make use of them. This characteristic enables human beings to have the ability to adjust themselves. At the same time, human beings are also willing to delay. Enjoy, and the interval between this extension can be very long. This is what makes humans different from other species.

Furthermore, and more importantly, I think each of us has a mission to come into this world and a task he needs to complete.

Just as an ancient prince was born, whether he liked it or not, he shouldered the mission of ruling the country and the people, so ordinary people like us, whether we like it or not, will also shoulder our own mission in life.

If you were born with a disability, your mission in life is to live a positive and optimistic life, to touch and inspire healthy people with your indomitable spirit to face the challenges of life, so that they can be more motivated by your spirit Face their own life and let them feel the beauty of life because of your actions! And your life task is to spend your whole life face and solve the various inconveniences that life brings to you, to sharpen the strong will of human beings from the body, and to experience the pride of walking with the rough destiny!

If you suddenly suffered a tragic accident and changed from a healthy person to a disabled person in an instant, this can also be understood as one of your many life problems, that is, life hopes that through this encounter, you will rethink your way of life and some inconveniences. For the belief system that you are aware of, your mission in life is to use unremitting efforts and strong will to get yourself back on your feet until one day, you successfully stand up and use the positive experience in the process of reinventing yourself. The spirit of reaching others, motivating them to face setbacks, inspiring them to meet challenges, so as to achieve the sublimation of the meaning of your life.

And we ordinary people encounter the most confusion about love. The person you love so dearly will never come back to you one day. He will either become someone else's partner or leave our world, so you feel that without him, your life seems to have no meaning. But his departure may be a life issue you have to face. Life hopes that this way will allow you to re-understand yourself, re-look at your original life, and allow you to reflect on yourself and improve yourself. Or life is to use this way to let you experience the strong emotions and experience the beauty and abundance of life due to this incomplete love. This is a life lesson that you must go through in the course of your life. Facing it with a smile, surpassing it, and accepting it is far more meaningful than escaping and sticking to it.

Yes, most of the time we are ordinary people, we are healthy, we have both parents, we have college degrees, we have good jobs, and our lives are smooth, but we can't see what the meaning of our life is, let alone find it. mission in life. Just like a story, I heard before, a white-collar worker from a foreign company with a career and family that everyone envied went to a psychiatrist because she really didn’t know why she was alive, so she was so painful that she wanted to end her life.

In fact, the meaning of life is to find your mission in life and to see those unexpected setbacks that we cannot control as life issues that we must face.

A film director's life mission is to express his outlook on life through images and have a positive impact on society, or simply tell stories to people to relax them;

a housewife's life mission is to take care of the family wholeheartedly, Create the warmth of the family, feel the happiness of peace, support the husband to make him happy, raise the children to make him healthy physically and mentally, and finally become a useful person to society.

A realist's life mission is to create wealth and achieve a great cause that can affect the world, while an idealist's life mission is to improve himself and explore the possibilities of life.

Everyone, according to their own circumstances, can find their own purpose in life. In my opinion, if you want to make your life full of value, hope, and freshness, and to achieve the sublimation of the meaning of life, the most important point is to become a person who is beneficial to others - of course, the premise is first to Be able to meet the needs of yourself and your family.

Yes, helping others as much as you can during your lifetime will make your heart softer, you will like yourself more, and you will fully feel the energy of love - this is a valid source of the meaning of life - the meaning of life is On the premise of caring for yourself, help others feel the beauty of life!

Another important meaning of life also comes from memory.

I think one of the happiest things is that one day when you are old, you look back at your life and find that you have sincerely paid for many people, you have created so many beautiful stories through your hands, I have created so many excellent castles with my heart, that kind of relief and satisfaction is the meaning of life.

And the most terrifying thing is that when you are old and remember, you find that although you have lived for eighty years, you have only lived one day, and then repeat this day for eighty years, that's all, at that time, life It really doesn't make sense.

We are indeed destined to die from birth, but on the line from birth to death, we can make him different through our own choices. I can paint him the color I like and dress him in my The clothes I like, one day, this line of mine will become colorful, and before I finally leave this world, I will tell future generations its colorful secrets, so that they can inherit my wisdom and let them because of me Wisdom and fewer detours, to create more for this world. Just as Darwin's wisdom has benefited us to this day.

There is just one fact that we must be clear about, that is, it is very likely that we have spent our entire lives and have not been able to contribute wisdom to future generations. Yes, we are too ordinary, too small, but it doesn't matter, I just need to work hard to give, work hard to create, let the final result be managed by the universe, no matter what the final result is, we will accept it calmly.

Yes, the birth and death of everything have their natural laws. Compared with the entire universe, we humans are very small. When we were young, our teachers and parents taught us to say, "Fate is in your hands", but when I grew up, I realized that fate is only partially in my hands, and I can decide whether to leave the city where I have lived for more than ten years and start anew. I have been here, but I can't decide whether the war is happening around me. I can decide whether to marry a man or a woman, but I can't decide who my parents are.

Life, before striving to create, first requires our wholehearted acceptance.

Accept the way your parents raised you, that is the best way of parenting in his era Spend a happy or painful childhood, accept yourself as you are, whether you are tall, short, fat or thin, whether you are beautiful, ugly, black and white, this is your appearance, the original appearance, he actually exists, whether you admit it or not, He is like this.

So is life. Accepting yourself is like accepting the natural comings and goings of life, accepting yourself is like accepting that we will die one day.

Finally, let me talk about my life mission.

Chatting with a friend on messenger one night, she said that I am like the sun, full of passion for life at all times, every time she sees me and chats with me, she can feel the beauty of life.
At that time, I was very moved by what she said, not by her words, but by my existence.
Is not it? If my mission in life is to give people hope, to give people the warmth and splendor of the sun, then I will do it, and I will accept the fact that I cannot be perfect, and I tell myself: I can do it Do as much as you want.


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