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Viktor Frankl is the author of the book 'Man's Search For Meaning', which describes his psychotherapeutic method.
The book identifies a purpose in life to make you feel positive and then creatively imagines that outcome to elevate. The book talks about spiritual freedom and the inner meaning of life to find purpose.
The author had to endure a lot when he was in concentration camps. His studies and practice in psychology helped him find the meaning of life, which allowed him to stay alive. Logotherapy is a word he uses to make a revelation in psychotherapy. Learn more about him and the book below.
The 1946 book 'Man's Search For Meaning' was written by Viktor Frankl, who was a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps during World War II.
Viktor Emil Frankl was born on March 26, 1905. He was an Austrian psychiatrist, neurologist, philosopher, author, and Holocaust survivor. Frankl died on September 2, 1997. He founded logotherapy, which is a school of psychotherapy that describes the search for the meaning of life as the central motivational force of a human being. Logotherapy is part of humanistic and existential psychology theories. There are other logotherapy schools by Sigmund Freud and Alfred Adler. The one established by Frankl is the third school of Viennese Psychotherapy. Frankl is known to have published 39 books in his lifetime. 'Man's Search For Meaning' is an autobiographical book that was a bestseller and talks about Frankl's experiences in different Nazi concentration camps.
Frankl was born to Gabriel Frankl and Elsa Frankl (née Lion), in a Jewish family. His father was a civil servant in the Ministry of Social Service. He had a huge interest in psychology, and this interest took flight when he started taking night classes on applied psychology during his time in junior high school. He talked with Sigmund Freud when he was a teenager and asked for his permission to publish one of his acclaimed papers.
He graduated from high school in 1923 and studied medicine at the University of Vienna. His specialization was neurology and psychiatry. He focused on suicide and depression. The International Journal of Psychoanalysis was where he published his first scientific paper, and it was published in 1924. He also became the president of the Social Democratic Party of the youth movement in Austria for high school students called Sozialistische Mittelschüler Österreich. He started questioning the approach taken by Freud on psychoanalysis.
His second scientific paper was published when he joined the circle of students of Alfred Adler. The name of the paper was 'Psychotherapy And Worldview', and it was published in the International Journal Of Individual Psychology in 1925. Frankl started insisting that in human beings, meaning was the central motivational force, and this got him expelled from the circle. He started refining his theory in 1926 and named it logotherapy.
Frankl organized many youth counseling centers when he was a medical student. He did it to make people aware of the number of suicides in teenagers taking place during the report card distributions at the end of the year. The city of Vienna sponsored the program, and it was free for the students. Other psychologists like Charlotte Bühler, Rudolf Dreikurs, and Erwin Wexberg were hired too. The record was staggering as not even one Viennese student died by suicide in 1931.
Frankl got his MD in 1930 and worked in Steinhof Psychiatric Hospital, where he was given the responsibility of treating suicidal women. He started a private practice in 1937. He joined Rothschild Hospital in 1940 as the head of the neurology department. He helped many avoid the Nazi euthanasia program before he was deported to the concentration camps himself. He and his wife were sent to the Theresienstadt concentration camp in 1942. After his father died of pneumonia and starvation, the rest of the family was sent to Auschwitz. In Auschwitz, his brother and mother were murdered in the gas chambers. Due to typhus in Bergen-Belsen, his wife also died. Frankl had to spend three years in four different concentration camps.
After the war, he joined the Vienna Polyclinic Hospital as head of the neurology department. He also made his home a center for private practice. He retired in 1970. He was given a professorship at the University of Vienna and was also a visiting professor at Harvard University, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, and Duquesne University, Pittsburgh. Viktor Frankl was vocal about the dehumanization of psychotherapy. He won the 1985 Oskar Pfister Award from the American Psychiatric Association for his contributions to psychiatry and religion.
In one sentence, the book 'Man's Search For Meaning' talks about the horrifying experiences of holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl and his psychological approach to logotherapy which guided him to survival. The book will show you can find meaning in your life.
Frankl establishes that all prisoners that arrived at concentration camps had to go through several phases. These phases are what made him and other surviving prisoners different from the ones who died. To survive, you should be okay with dying at any point in time, and that is the truth of human existence. This perspective of just existing in life and not living is what allowed the prisoners to safeguard their minds from all the horrors around them and just survive. In the concentration camps, sleep, rest, clothing, food, and all necessary amenities needed in life were severely limited. It is not natural for the human soul or human freedoms, but the prisoners gave in to the present without thinking about the future. This made them capable of hiding inside manure to avoid being taken to the gas chambers or stealing shoes from a dead body.
Chess is a game with many virtues. There is no best move in chess, but there is always a great move considering one of the pieces on the board. Finding the meaning of life is the same thing. You won't find a general meaning of life out there. There is no single meaning in your own life. The situations you are in or the decisions you make constitute the meaning of your life. Your life's tasks make the meaning of life and are unique to you. Logotherapy is all about the meaning of life.
There is a common misconception that you have to find the meaning of life first and then live your best life. Logotherapy refutes these claims and says that the meaning of life is everything needed to live your life simultaneously. It is about how you act. The amount of responsibility and sense you bring to your decisions decides how large the meaning of your life is. Frankl did the same thing by stumbling at night across puddles and icy rocks barefoot, working for the Nazi guards. He thought about his wife all the time and found bliss.
Logotherapy also focuses on enabling people to focus on their internal state of mind and not external factors. It gives a sense of control over their own life. Frankl calls this paradoxical intention, which lets you take control.
The book sold more than 10 million copies and has been translated into 24 languages.
When humans suffer, they tend to suffer with a sense of failure. This book is for them and will help them take a look at inner life and moral values to keep away those depressed feelings. It talks about human dignity and human liberty at the helm of everyday life. The meaning of life is important to stay true to yourself, and logotherapy helps you find this purpose.
The book is written by Viktor Frankl, who himself stayed in many concentration camps and had to endure a lot of torture along with other prisoners. He talks about how with the release of intense pressure on the mind, there is an endangerment to mental health. Mental Health is crucial when there is tension between the present and the past. Paradoxical intention helps overcome fears and anxieties and makes a person come face to face with what he fears.
It also talks about human kindness and says it can be found in all groups of people, even when it is easy to blame.
When Frankl was the head of the Neurological Department at the general Polyclinic Hospital, he wrote the book 'Man's Search For Meaning' in just nine days. It was released in German in 1946 and was titled 'A Psychologist Experiences The Concentration Camp'. The English translation of 'Man's Search For Meaning' became an international bestseller when it was published in 1959.
One of the most famous quotes from Viktor Frankl is "Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way", and this quote truly sums up how you should live your everyday life. The book says that you must find a way to get the meaning of your life, and that is the only thing that will save you in any circumstance. Logotherapy, as Frankl called it, is the study of this form of therapy where the meaning of life is the greatest point in any human being's life.
With love, Frankl found a way to stay alive in the concentration camps even with the physical stress he had to endure. The spiritual being in his inner self helped him find the deepest meaning. In 1991, 'Man's Search For Meaning' was called one of the ten most influential books in the United States.
What is the search for meaning according to Frankl?
A: For Frankl, meaning came from love, purposeful work, and courage in the face of difficulty.
What are the three main sources of meaning in life according to Viktor Frankl?
A: Love, purposeful work, and courage in the face of difficulty.
What is the point of 'Man's Search For Meaning'?
A: The point of the book is to identify a purpose in life that helps you feel positive about it and then imagine that outcome.
When did Viktor Frankl write 'Man's Search For Meaning'?
A: The book was written in 1946.
What happens at the end of 'Man's Search For Meaning'?
A: He ends the book with the belief that a man is capable of doing evil, but no individual human must become evil.
What is the principal question that the author tries to address in 'Man's Search For Meaning'?
A: The principle question is how everyday life in a concentration camp was reflected in the mind of the average prisoner.
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