Viktor Frankl and Logotherapy: The Search for Meaning Through Healing
To quote the great medical doctor, psychiatrist, neurologist, and philosopher Victor Frankl; is also to quote our own lives.
“Emotion, which is suffering, ceases to be suffering as soon as we form a clear and precise picture of it.”
A line that emotes a bevy of thoughts, feelings, and questions; Viktor Frankl writes in his 1946 book, “Man’s Search for Meaning,” about finding meaning in one’s life to survive one’s suffering.
Everyone suffers. I suffer. You suffer. Your friends suffer. My ancestors suffered. Our kids will suffer. Everyone.
While not alone in suffering, we can be alone with our thoughts on each particular suffrage. My suffering may be that of financial ruin. Yours might be heartbreak. Our parents’ suffering might have included raising us.
My point is that every one of us has a story to tell. A scar to bear. A pain we must bear and defeat. We don’t reach the mountaintop without perseverance, breathing difficulties, and punishment.
We know this. We understand this. Yet, when it comes time for us to suffer, and deal with the hand we are dealt we do one of two things. We can crawl back into bed and cry and whine and do nothing, gaining nothing and learning nothing, or, we can accept our cards, face life head-on, and not give in to its woe.
Viktor Frankl survived four separate concentration camps: Theresienstadt, Auschwitz, Kaufering III, and Türkheim. His parents were a part of these camps and did not survive. Viktor’s own wife would succumb as well. Viktor would survive, and thrive, from his experiences during the 1940s, creating “Logotherapy.”
Logotherapy involves “healing through meaning,” as mentioned earlier. Logotherapy requires one to take a step back, acknowledge their situation (suffering) in life, reflect, learn, grow, and move on. There is meaning behind every moment in life. There is light at the end of every tunnel.
That light, in how brightly it shines, is entirely up to you. And me. And everyone else we know. It’s how we react to a moment in life, for what the result will be.
One example that is extremely challenging is death. When losing a loved one, we suffer. We know they are lost. Gone forever. Depending on our spiritual beliefs, the person we once knew is dead and buried. They are gone and no longer among us. It is in…