Dr Viktor E. Frankl is somewhat of a hero of mine. A Jewish neurologist born in 1905, Viktor Frankl was rounded up and taken to various concentration camps (including Auschwitz and other) during the Holocaust. Surviving extreme and horrible conditions beyond most people’s comprehension by the skin of his teeth, he went on to write various books and become one of the most prominent and influential psychiatrists of the 20th century. This book is his most well known.
Man’s search for meaning details Dr Frankl’s experiences throughout the war and afterward. He noticed throughout his time in the concentration camps that there seemed to be a pattern in regards to who would die and who would live. Seeing it time and time again, he realised that there was also a pattern to people’s stages of psychological deterioration. Dr Frankl went on to devise his own psychological method for treating mental health issues. He called it ‘Logotherapy’.
Google: ‘Logos, (Greek: “word,” “reason,” or “plan”) plural logoi, in Greek philosophy and theology, the divine reason implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it form and meaning.’
A book that puts our world into perspective; which shows the human condition survive and learn under the worst conditions imaginable.
Fascinatingly Dr Frankl speaks of his captors not in terms of evil, but in terms of reason. He tries to understand them. This is a book to be read and re-read.
At the end of the book Dr Frankl includes an outline as to the application of Logotherapy as a psychological method. Many people will gain actionable information in this part of the book. His method shows much parallel with eastern religions, but with a western twist.
Can’t recommend this book enough.
Watch out for the next book of the day! Here is the last book recommendation.