Mans Search for Meaning Book Review Essay

This essay has a total of 1074 words and 5 pages.


Mans Search for Meaning Book Review





Man’s Search for Meaning: Viktor E. Frankl

“He who has a why to live for can bear any how.” The words of Nietzsche begin
to explain Frankl’s tone throughout his book. Dr. Frankl uses his experiences in
different Nazi concentration camps to explain his discovery of logotherapy. This discovery
take us back to World War II and the extreme suffering that took place in the Nazi
concentration camps and outlines a detailed analysis of the prisoners psyche. An
experience we gain from the first-hand memoirs of Dr. Frankl.


In the first half of this book, Dr. Frankl explains his theory of logotherapy through his
concentration camp experiences. He explains how his worldly possessions were striped from
him literally in the sense that his family was put to death and he himself was striped
naked and assigned to a number. Furthermore, he was made to endure endless hourly
suffering for several years. It is though the experiences that Dr. Frankl explains that
suffering is life and that to survive suffering one must find a means for the suffering.
Therefor, finding a means for ones suffering will aid that individual to survive life.
This brings us back to Nietzsche’s quote “He who has a why to live for can
bear any how.”


Dr. Frankl explains, though his psychiatric analysis of himself and other prisoners in the
concentration camps, how this theory works. "It did not really matter what we expected
from life, but rather what life expected from us. We need to stop asking about the meaning
of life, and instead to think of ourselves as those being questioned by life - daily and
hourly." With this, Dr Frankl shows how when one losses the means to look to the future
and see the possibilities that it holds, one losses the capacity to survive, because, that
individual no longer understands the meaning of his suffering. In other words, the
individual losses hope or gives up. Dr. Frankl also explains that the means for the
suffering or the hope must be one worthy of the suffering required. "A man who becomes
conscious of the responsibility he bears towards a human being affectionately waits for
him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to through away his life. He knows the
"why" for his existence, and will be able to bear any "how." With the same theory in mind
as above, one can see how easy it would be to lose hope or give up if the means of the
suffering was not worthy of the suffering.


Man's Search for Meaning also contains a message on choosing one's attitude. "Everything
Continues for 3 more pages >>




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